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" Who is he?" said the man.
I told you, and a common copy is not worth five shillings; but this Esop ?”
is a first edition, and a copy of the first edition is worth its weight in “No, I know what that it: Esop's cant for a hunchback; but gold." t'other?"
“So, after all, they outwitted you," I observed. "You should know," said I.
"Clearly,” said the man; “ I might have got double the price had “Never saw the man in all my life.”
I known the value; but I don't care; much good may it do them, it “Yes, you have,” said I, “and felt him, too; don't you remember has done me plenty. By means of it I have got into an honest rethe individual from whom you took the pocket-book ?”
spectable trade, in which there's little danger and plenty of profit, "Oh, that was he; well, the less said about that matter the bet and got out of one which would have got me lagged sooner or later." ter; I have left off that trade, and taken to this, which is a much “ But," said I, “you ought to remember that the thing was not better. Between ourselves, I am not sorry that I did not carry yours; you took it from me, who had been requested by a poor old off that pocket-book; if I had, it might have encouraged me apple-woman to exchange it for a Bible.” in the trade, in which, had I remained, I might have been lagged, “Well,” said the man, "did she ever get her Bible ?” sent abroad, as I had been already imprisoned; so I determined to “Yes," said I, "she got her Bible." leave it off at all hazards, though I was hard up, not having a penny "Then she has no cause to complain; and, as for you, chance or in the world.”
something else has sent you to me, that I may make you reasonable “And wisely resolved," said I, “it was a bad and dangerous trade; amends for any loss you may have had. Here am I ready to make I wonder you should ever have embraced it.”
you my bonnet, with forty or fifty shillings a week, which you say " It is all very well talking," said the man, but there is a reason yourself are capital wages." for everything; I am the son of a Jewess, by a military officer,”—and “I find no fault with the wages,'' said I, “but I don't like the emthen the man told me his story. I shall not repeat the man's story; ploy." it was a poor one, a vile one. At last he observed, “So that affair "Not like bonneting?" said the man; “ah, I see, you would like which you know of determined me to leave the filching trade, and to be principal; well, a time may come—those long white fingers of take up with a more honest and safe one; so at last I thought of the yours would just serve for the business." pea and thimble, but I wanted funds, especially to pay for lessons at “Is it a difficult one?” I demanded. the hands of a master, for I knew little about it."
Why. it is not very easy; two things are needful-natural talent, “Well," said I, “how did you get over that difficulty ?"
and persistent practice; but I'll show you a point or two connected “Why," said the man, “I thought I should never have got over with the game;" and, placing his table between his knees as he sat it. What funds could I raise? I had nothing to sell; the few clothes over the side of the pit, he produced three thimbles and a small I had I wanted, for we of the thimble must always appear decent, or brown pellet, something resembling a pea. He moved the thimble nobody would come near us. I was at my wits' ends; at last I got and pellet about, now placing it to all appearance under one, and over my difficulty in the strangest way in the world."
now under another. “Under which is it now?" he said at last. " What was that?"
“Under that,” said I, pointing to the lowermost of the thimbles, " By an old thing which I had picked up some time before--a which, as they stood, formed a kind of triangle. “No," said he, “it book."
is not, but lift it up;” and when I lifted up the thimble, the pellet, in "A book ?" said I.
truth, was not under it. “ It was under none of them,” said he," it “Yes, which I had taken out of your lordship's pocket one day as was pressed by my little finger against iny palm;" and then he you were walking the streets in a great hurry. I thought it was a showed me how he did the trick, and asked me if the game was not pocket-book, at first, full of bank notes, perhaps," continued he. a funny one, and on my answering in the affirmative, he said, “I laughing. “It was well for me, however, that it was not, for I am glad you like it, come along and let us win some money." should have soon spent the notes; as it was, I had fung the old thing Thereupon, getting up, he placed the table before him, and was down with an oath, as soon as I brought it home. When I was moving away; observing, however, that I did not stir, le asked so hard up, however, after the affair with that friend of yours, I me wha' I was staying for. Merely for my own pleasure,” said I, took it up, one day, and thought I might make something by it to “I like sitting here very well.” " Then you won't close ?" said the support myself a day with. Chance or something else led me into a
' By no means," I replied, “your proposal does not suit me." grand shop; there was a man there who seemed to be the master, “ You may be principal in time,” said the man. "That makes no talking to a jolly, portly old gentleman, who seemed to be a country difference," said I; and sitting with my legs over the pit, I forthsquire. Well, I went up to the first, and offered it for sale; he took with began to decline an Armenian noun. " That a'n't cant,” said the book, opened it at the title-page, and then all of a sudden his the man; “no, nor gypsy, either. Well, if you won't close, another eyes glistened, and he showed it to the fat, jolly gentleman, and his will, I can't lose any more time," and forth with he departed. eyes glistened, too, and I heard him say, 'How singular!' and then And after I had declined four Armenian nouns, of different dethe two talked together in a speech I didn't understand-I rather clensions, I rose from the side of the pit and wandered about thought it was French, at any rate it wasn't cant; and presenıly the amongst the various groups of people scattered over the green. first asked me what I would take for the book. Now I am not alto Presently I came to where the man of the thimbles was standing, gether a fool, nor am I blind, and I had narrowly marked all that with the table before him, a'id many people about him. 'Them had passed, and it came into my head that now was the time for who finds, wins, and them who can't find, loses," he cried. Various making a man of myself, at any rate I could lose nothing by a little individuals tried to find the pellet, but all were unsuccessful, till at confidence; so I looked the man boldly in the face, and said, 'I will last considerable dissatisfaction was expressed, and the terms rogue have five guineas for that book, there a’n't such another in the and cheat were lavished upon him. “Never cheated anybody in all whole world.' 'Nonsense,' said the first man, 'there are plenty of my life,” he cried; and, observing me at hand, “Didn't I play fair, them; there have been nearly fifty editions to my knowledge; I will my lord ?” he inquired. But I made no answer. Presently some give you five shillings.' 'No,' said I, “I'll not take it, for I don't like to more played, and he permitted one or two to win, and the eagerness be cheated, so give me my book again;' and I attempted to take it to play with him became greater. After I had looked on for some away from the fat gentleman's hand. “Stop,' said the younger man, time, I was moving away. Just then I perceived a short, thick per‘are you sure that you won't take less ?' Not a farthing.' said I; sonage, with a staff in his hand, advancing in a great hurry; where which was not altogether true, but I said so. “Well,' said the fat upon, with a sudden impulse. I exclaimed, gentleman, I will give you what you ask;' and sure enough he pres
"Shoon thimble-engro; ently gave me the money; so I made a bow and was leaving the
A vella gorgio.' shop, when it came into my head that there was something odd in The man who was in the midst of his pea and thimble process no all this, and as I had got the money in my pocket, I turned back, and sooner heard the last word of the distich, than he turned an alarmed making another bow, said, . May I be so bold as to ask why you gave look in the direction of where I stood; then, glancing around, and me all this money for that 'ere dirty book? When I came into the perceiving the constable, he slipped forth with his pellet and thimbles shop I should have been glad to get a shilling for it; but I saw you into his pocket, and, lifting up his table, he cried to the people wanted it, and asked five guineas.' Then they looked at one another about him, “Make way!” and with a motion with his head to me, and smiled, and shrugged up their shoulders. Then the first man, as if to follow him, he darted off with a swiftness which the short, ooking at me, said, · Friend, you have been a little too sharp for us; pursy constable could by no means rival; and whither he went, or however, we can afford to forgive you, as my frieri here has long what became of him, I know not, inasmuch as I turned away in anbeen in quest of this particular book; there are plenty of editions, as other direction.
"Then the half of it!" And, as I wandered along the green, I drew near to a place where
“Nor the half of it; but it is getting toward evening, I must go
back to the great city." several men, with a cask beside them, sat carousing in the neighborhood of a small tent. “Here he comes," said one of them, as I ad
“And what will you do in the Boro Foros?''
“I know not," said I. vanced, and standing up, he raised his voice and sang:
"If I can."
"And if you can't?"
"Starve!" It was Mr. Petulengro, who was here diverting himself with sev
“You look ill brother," said Mr. Petulengro. eral of his comrades; they all received me with considerable frank
"I do not feel well; the great city does not agree with me. Should “Sit down, brother," said Mr. Petulengro, “and take a cup of I be so fortunate as to earn some money, I would leave the big city, good ale."
and take to the woods and fields." I sat down, “ Your health, gentlemen," said I, as I took the cup “You may do that,” said Mr. Petulengro, "whether you have which Mr. Petulengro handed to me.
money or not. Our tents and horses are on the other side of yonder “Aukko tu pios adrey Rommanis. Here is your health in Rom
wooded hill, come and stay with us; we shall all be glad of your many, brother,” said Mr. Petulengro; who, having re-filled the cup, company, but more especially myself and my wife Pakomovna."
“What hill is that?" I demanded. now emptied it at a draught.
“Your health in Rommany, brother," said Tawno Chikno, to And then Mr. Petulengro told me the name of the hill. “We stay whom the cup came next.
on t'other side of the hill a fortnight,” he continued ; "and as you "The Rommany Rye,” said a third.
are fond of lil writing, you may employ yourself profitably whilst "The Gypsy gentleman," exclaimed a fourth, drinking.
there. You can write the lil of him whose dook gallops down that And then they all sang in chorus,
hill every night, even as the living man was wont to do long ago."
“Who was he?" I demanded.
“Jemmy Abershaw," said Mr. Petulengro; “one of those whom we Rome and dree, rum and dry
call Boro drom engroes, and the gorgois highwaymen. I once heard Rally round the Rommany Řye.”
a rye say that the life of that man would fetch much money; so come "And now, brother," said Mr. Petulengro, “ seeing tlat you have to the other side of the hill and write the lil in the tent of Jasper drunk and been drunken, you will perhaps tell us where you have and his wife Pakomovna." been, and what about??'
At first I felt inclined to accept the invitation of Mr. Petulengro; a “I have been in the Big City,' said I, “writing lils."
little consideration, however, determined me to decline it. I had “How much money have you got in your pocket, brother ?" said always been on excellent terms with Mr. Petulengro, but I reflected Mr. Petulengro.
that people might be excellent friends when they met occasionally “Eighteen pence," said I, “all I have in the world."
in the street, or on the heath, or in the wood; but that these very “I have been in the Big City, too,” said Mr. Petulengro; "but I people when living together in a house, to say nothing of a tent, have not written lils—I have fought in the ring--I have tifty pounds might quarrel. I reflected, moreover, that Mr. Petulengro had a in my pocket-I have much more in the world. Brother, there is wife. I had always, it is true, been a great favorite with Mrs. Petuconsiderable difference between us."
lengro, who had frequently been loud in her commendation of the “I would rather be the lil-writer, after all," said the tall, handsome young rye, as she called me, and his turn of conversation; but this black man; “ indeed, I would wish for nothing better."
was at a time when I stood in need of nothing, lived under my "Why so ?” said Mr. Petulengro.
parents' roof, and only visited at the tents to divert and be diverted. “ Because they have so much to say for themselves," said the black The times were altered, and I was by no means certain that Mrs. man, "even when they are dead and gone. When they are laid in Petulengro, when she should discover that I was in need both of the churchyard, it is their own fault if people a'n't talking of them. shelter and subsistence, might not alter her opinion both with reWho will know, after I am dead, or bitchadey pawdel, that I was spect to the individual and what he said--stigmatizing my conversaonce the beauty of the world, or that you, Jasper, were—"
tion as saucy discourse, and myself as a scurvy companion, and that “The best man in England of my inches. That's true, Tawno she might bring over her husband to her own way of thinking, prohowever, here's our brother will perhaps let the world know some vided, indeed, he should need any conducting. I, therefore, though thing about us."
without declaring my reasons, declined the offer of Mr. Petulengro, “Not he," said the other, with a sigh; "he'll have quite and presently, after shaking him by the hand, bent again my course enough to do writing his own lils, and telling the world how hand toward the great city. some and clever he was; and who can blame him ? Not I. If I I crossed the river at a bridge considerably above that hight of could write lils every word should be about myself and my own London; for, not being acquainted with the way, I missed the turntacho Rommanis-my own lawful wedded wife, which is the same ing which should have brought me to the latter. Suddenly I found thing. I tell you what, brother, I once heard a wise man say in myself in a street of which I had some recollection, and mechanically Brummagem, that there is nothing like blowing one's own horn,' stopped before the window of a shop at which various publications which I conceive to be much the same thing as writing one's own lil." were exposed; it was that of the bookseller to whom I had last ap
After a little more conversation, Mr. Petulengro arose and plied in the hope of selling my ballads or Ab Gwilym, and who had motioned me to follow him. “Only eighteen pence in the world, given me hopes that, in the event of my writing a decent novel, or a brother!” said he, as we walked together.
tale, he would prove a purchaser. As I stood listlessly looking at "Nothing more, I assure you. How came you to ask me how the window, and the publications which it contained, I observed a much money I had?”
paper affixed to the glass by wafers with something written upon it. “Because there was something in your looks, brother, something I drew yet nearer for the purpose of inspecting it; the writing was very much resembling that which a person showeth who does not in a fair round hand—“A Novel or Tale is much wanted," was what carry much money in his pocket. I was looking at my own face was written, this morning in my wife's looking-glass-I did not look as you do." “I believe your sole motive for inquiring," said I, "was to have an
CHAPTER XXX. opportunity of venting a foolish boast, and to let me know that you "I must do something," said I, as I sat that night in my lonely were in possession of fifty pounds."
apartment, with some bread and a pitcher of water before me. “What is the use of having money unless you let people know Thereupon taking some of the bread, and eating it, I considered you have it?” said Mr. Petulengro. “It is not every one who can what I was to do. "I have no idea what I am to do." said I, as I read faces, brother; and, unless you knew I had money, how could stretched my hand toward the pitcher, “unless"--and here I took a you ask me to lend you any?"
considerable draught-"I write a tale or a novel--That bookseller," "I am not going to ask you to lend me any."
I continued, speaking to myself, “is certainly much in need of a tale “Then you may have it without asking; as I said before, I have or a novel, otherwise he would not advertise for one. Suppose I fifty pounds, all lawfully earnt money, got by fighting in the ring -I write one, I appear to have no other chance of extricating myself will lend you that, brother."
fronu my present difficulties; surely it was fate that conducted me to You are very kind," said I, “but I will not take it."
"I will do it,” said I, as I struck my hand againt the table; "I will I had better begin at once, thought I; and removing the bread do it.” Suddenly a heavy cloud of despondency came over me. and the jug, which latter was now empty, I seized pen and paper, Could I do it? Had I the imagination requisite to write a tale or a and forth with essayed to write the life of Joseph Sell, but soon disnovel! “Yes, yes," said I, as I struck my hand again against the covered that it was much easier to resolve upon a thing than to table, “I can manage it; give me fair play, and I can accomplish achieve it, or even to commence it; for the life of me I did not know anything."
how to begin, and, after trying in vain to write a line, I thought it But should I have fair play? I must have something to maintain would be as well to go to bed, and defer my projected undertaking
I in the world." Would that maintain me whilst I wrote my tale? Yes, "So I went to bed, but not to sleep. During a greater part of the I thought it would, provided I ate bread, which did not cost much, night I lay awake, musing upon the work which I had determined and drank water, which cost nothing; it was poor diet, it was true. to execute. For a long time my brain was dry and unproductive; I but better men than myself had written on bread and water; had could form no plan which appeared feasible. At length I felt within not the big man told me so? or something to that effect, months be my brain a kindly glow; it was the commencement of inspiration; fore?
in a few minutes I had formed my plan; I then began to imagine It was true there was my lodging to pay for; but up to the present the scenes and incidents. Scenes and incidents flitted before my time I owed nothing, and perhaps, by the time the people of the mind's eye so plentifully, that I knew not how to dispose of themı; house asked me for money, I should bave written a tale or a novel, I was in a regular embarrassment. At length I got out of the diffiwhich would bring me in money: I had paper, pens, and ink, and, culty in the easiest manner imaginable, namely, by consigning to let me not forget them, I had candles in my closet, all paid for, to the depths of oblivion all the feebler and less stimulant scenes and light me during my night work. Enough, I would go doggedly wo incidents, and retaining the better arid more impressive ones. Bework upon my tale or novel.
fore morning I had sketched the whole work on the tablets of my But what was the tale or novel to be about? Was it to be a tale of mind, and then resigned myself to sleep in the pleasing conviction fashionable life, about Sir Harry Somebody, and the Countess Some that the most difficult part of my undertaking was achieved. thing? But I knew nothing about fashionable people, and cared less; therefore how should I attempt to describe fashionable life?
CHAPTER XXXI. What should the tale consist of? The life and adventures of some Rather late in the morning I awoke; for a few minutes I lay still; one. Good-but of whom? Did not Mr. Petulengro mention one my imagination was considerably sobered; the scenes and situations Jemmy Abershaw? Yes. Did he not tell me that the life and ad which had pleased me so much over night appeared to me in a far ventures of Jemmy Abershaw would bring in much money to the less captivating guise that morning. I felt languid and almost hope. writer? Yes, but I knew nothing of that worthy. I heard, it is less--the thought, however, of my situation soon roused me-I must true, from Mr. Petulengro, that when alive he committed robberies make an effort to improve the posture of my affairs; there was no on the hill, on the side of which Mr. Petulengro had pitched his time to be lost; so I sprang out of bed, breakfasted on bread and tents, and that his ghost still haunted the hill at midnight; but water, and then sat down doggedly to write the life of Joseph Sell. those were scant materials out of which to write the man's life. It It was a great thing to have fotmed my plan, and to have arranged is probable indeed, that Mr. Petulengro would be able to supply me the scenes in my head, as I had done on the preceding night. The with further materials if I should apply to him, but I was in a hurry, chief thing requisite at present was the mere mechanical act of comand could not afford the time which it would be necessary to spend mitting them to paper. This I did not find at first so easy as I could in passing to and from Mr. Petulengro, and consulting him. More wish I wanted mechanical skill; but I persevered; and before •ver, my pride revolted at the idea of being beholden to Mr. Petu evening I had written ten pages. I partook of some bread and walengro for the materials of the history. No, I would not write the ter; and, before I went to bed that night, I had completed fifteen history of Abershaw'. Whose then-Harry Simms? Alas, the life pages of my life of Joseph Sell. of Harry Simms had been already much better written by himself The next day I resumed my task-I found my power of writing than I could hope to do it; and, after all, Harry Simms, like Jemmy considerably increased; my pen hurried rapidly over the paper-Abershaw, was merely a robber. Both, though bold and extraordi my brain was in a wonderful teeming state; many scenes and visnary men, were merely highwaymen. I questioned whether I coul ! ions which I had not thought of before were evolved, and, as fast as compose a tale likely to excite any particular interest out of the ex evolved, written down; they seemed to be more pat to my purpose, ploits of a mere robber. I want a character for my hero, thought I, and more natural to my history than many others which I had something higher than a mere robber; some one like-like Colonel imagined before, and which I now made give place to these newer B. By the way, why should I not write the life and adven- creations; by about midnight I had added thirty fresh pages to my tures of Colonel B of Londonderry, in Ireland?
“Life and Adventures of Joseph Sell.” A truly singular man was this same Colonel B of London. The third day arose-it was dark and dreary out of doors, and I derry, in Ireland; a personage of strange and incredible feats and passed it drearily enough within; my bram appeared to have lost daring, who had been a partizan soldier, a bravo---who, assisted by much of its former glow, and my pen much of its power; I, howcertain discontented troopers, nearly succeeded in stealing the crown ever, toiled on, but at midnight had only added seven pages to my and regalia from the Tower of London; who attempted to hang the history of Joseph Sell. Duke of Ormond, at Tyburn; and whose strange eventful career
On the fourth day the sun shone brightly-I arose, and, having did not terminate even with his life, his dead body, on the circula breakfasted as usual, fell to work. My brain was this day wondertion of an unfounded report that he did not come to his death by fully prolific, and my pen never before or since glided so rapidly fair means, having been exhumed by the mob of his native place, over the paper; toward night I began to feel strangely about the where he had retired to die, and carried in a coffin through the back part of my head, and my whole system was extraordinarily streets.
affected. I likewise occasionally saw double--a tempter now seemed Of his life I had inserted an account in the Newgate Lives and to be at work within me. Trials; it was bare and meagre, and written in the stiff awkward "You had better leave off now for a short space,” said the tempstyle of the seventeenth century; it had, however, strongly capti ter, "and go out and drink a pint of beer; you have still one shilling vated my imagination, and I now thought that out of it something left-if you go on at this rate, you will go mad-go out and spend better could be made; that, if I added to the adventures, and puri. sixpence, you can afford it, more than half your work is done." I fied the style, I might fashion out of it a very decent tale or novel. was about to obey the suggestion of the tempter, when the idea On a sudden, however, the proverb of mending old garments with struck me that, if I did not complete the work whilst the fit was on new cloth occurred to me. "I am afraid," said I, “any new adven me, I should never complete it; so I held on. I am almost afraid to wire which I can invent will not fadge well with the old tale; one state how many pages I wrote that day of the life of Joseph Sell. will but spoil the other.” I had better have nothing io do with Col From this time I proceeded in a somewhat leisurely manner; but, onel B thought I, but boldly and independently sit down and as I drew nearer and nearer to the completion of my task, dreadful write the life of Joseph Sell.
fears and despondencies came over me. It will be too late, thought This Joseph Sell, dear reader, was a fictitious personage who had I; by the time I have finished the work, the bookseller will have just come into my head. I had never even heard of the name, but been supplied with a tale or novel. It is probable that, in a town just at that moment it happened to come into my head; I would like this, where talent is so abundant-hungry talent too-a bookwrite an entirely fictitious narrative, called the Life and Adventures seller can advertise for a tale or a novel, without being supplied with of Joseph Sell, the great traveler.
half a dozen in twenty-four hours. I may as well fling down my
pen-I am writing to no purpose. And these thoughts came over iors in age. Well, I think your book will do, and so does my wife, my mind so often, that at last, in utter despair. I flung down the for whose judgment I have a great regard; as well I may, as she is pen. Whereupon the tempter within me sa d—"And, now you have the daughter of a first-rate novelist, deceased. I think I shall ven. flung down your pen, you may as well fling yourself out of the win. ture on sending your book to the press.” “But,” said I, "we have dow; what remains for you to do?” Why, to take it up again, not yet agreed upon terms.” “Terms, terms,” said the bookseller; thought I to myself, for I did not like the latter suggestion at all "ahem! well, there is nothing like coming to terms at once. I will and then forth with I resumed the pen, and wrote with greater vigor | print the book, and give you half the profit when the book is sold.” than before, from about six o'clock in the evening until I could “That will not do." said I; I intend shortly to leave London; I must hardly see, when I rested for awhile, when the tempter within me have something at once." "Ah, I see," said the bookseller, “in disagain said, or appeared to say—“All you have been writing is stuff, tress; frequently the case with authors, especially young ones. it will never do-a drug-a mere drug;" and methought these last Well, I don't care if I purchase it of you, but you must be moderwords were uttered in the gruff tones of the big publisher. “A ate; the public are very fastidious, and the speculation may prove thing merely to be sneezed at," a voice like that of Taggart added; a losing one, after all. Let me see, will five-hem”—he stopped. and then I seemed to hear a sternutation,
, -as I probably did, for, I looked the bookseller in the face; there was something peculiar in recovering from a kind of swoon, I found myself shivering with it. Suddenly it appeared to me as if the voice of him of the thimble cold. The next day I brought my work to a conclusion.
sounded in my ear, “Now is your time, ask enough, never such anBut the task of revision still remained; for an hour or two I other chance of establishing yourself; respectable trade, pea and shrank from it, and remained gazing stupidly at the pile of paper thimble.” “Well," said I at last, "I have no objection to take the which I had written over. I was all but exhausted, and I dreaded, offer which you were about to make though I really think five-andon inspecting the sheets, to find them full of absurdities which I had twenty guineas to be scarcely enough, everything considered." paid no regard to in the furor of composition. But the task, how "Five-and-twenty guineas !" said the bookseller; “are you--what ever trying to my nerves, must be got over; at last, in a kind of des. was I going to say-I never meant to offer half as much-I mean & peration I entered upon it. It was far from an easy one; there quarter. I was going to say five guineas-I mean pounds; I will, were, however, fewer errors and absurdities than I had anticipated. however, make it up guineas." "That will not do," said I ; but, as About twelve o'clock at night I had got over the task of revision. I find we shall not deal, return me my manuscript, that I may carry "To.morrow, for the bookseller," said I, as my head sank on the it to some one else." The bookseller looked blank. "Dear me, pillow. "Oh me!''
said he, "I should never have supposed that you would have made
any objection to such an of I am quite sure that you would have CHAPTER XXXII.
been glad to take five pounds for either of the two huge manuscripts On arriving at the bookseller's shop, I cast a nervous look at the of songs and ballads that you brought to me on a former occasion." window, for the purpose of observing whether the paper had been "Well," said I, “if you will engage to publish either of those two removed or not. To my great delight the paper was in its place; | manuscripts, you shall have the present one for five pounds." "God with a beating heart I entered, there was nobody in the shop; as I torbid that I should make any such bargain," said the book: eller; stood at the counter, however, deliberating whether or not I should “I would publish neii her on any account; but, with respect to this call out, the door of what seemed to be a back parlor opened, and last book I have really an inclination to print it, both for y ur sake out came a well-dressed, lady-like female, of about thirty, with a and mine; suppose we say ten pounds." "No," said I, “ten pounds good-looking and intelligent countenance. “What
will not do; pray restore me my manuscript." "Stay," said the young man?" said she to me, after I had made her a polite bow. "I bookseller, my wife is in the next room, I will go and consult her." wish to speak to the gentleman of the house," said I. “My husband Thereupon he went into his back room, where I heard him conversis not within at present,” she replied; "what is your business?" "I ing with his wife in a low cone; in about ten minutes he returned. have merely brought something to show him," "but I will call "Young gentleman,' said he, “perhaps you will take tea with us again.” “If you are the young gentleman who has been here be this evening, when we will talk further over the matter." fore," said the lady, "with poems and ballads, as, indeed, I know That evening I went and took tea with the bookseller and his wife, you are," she added, smiling, “for I have seen you through the both of whom, particularly the latter, overwhelmed me with civility. glass door, I am afraid it will be useless; that is,” she added with It was not long before I learned that the work had already been sent another smile, "if you bring us nothing else." "I have not brought to the press, and was intended to stand at the head of a series of enyou poems and ballads now," said I, "but something very different; tertaining narratives, from which my friends promised themselves I saw your advertisement for a tale or a novel, and have written considerable profit. The subject of terms was again brought forsomething which I think will suit; and here it is," I added, showing ward. I stood firm to my first demand for a long time; when, howthe roll of paper which I held in my hand. “Well," said the book. ever, the bookseller's wife complimented me on my production in seller's wife, you may leave it, though I can not promise you much the highest terms, and said that she discovered therein the germs of chance of its being accepted. My husband has already had several genius, which she made no doubt would some day prove ornamental offered to him; however, you may leave it; give it me.
to my native land, I consented to drop my demand to twenty pounds, afraid to intrust it to me?" she demanded somewhat hastily, observ stipulating, however, that I should not be troubled with the correcing that I hesitated. “Excuse me," said I, “but it is all I have to tion of the work. depend upon in the world; I am chiefly apprehensive that it will not Before I departed I received the twenty pounds, and departed be read.” “On that point I can reassure you," said the good lady, with a light heart to my lodgings. smiling, and there was now something sweet in her smile. "I give Reader, amidst the difficulties and dangers of this life, should you you my word that it shall be read; come again to-morrow morning ever be tempted to despair, call to mind these latter chapters of the at eleven, when, if not approved, it shall be returned to you." life of Lavengro. There are few positions, however difficult, from
I returned to my lodging, and forth with betook myself to bed, which dogged resolution and perseverance may not liberate you. notwithstanding the earliness of the hour. I felt tolerably tranquil; I had now cast my last stake, and was prepared to abide by the re
CHAPTER XXXIII. sult. Whatever that result might be, I could have nothing to re I had long determined to leave London as soon as the means proach myself with; I had strained all the energies which nature should be in my power, and, now that they were, I determined to had given me in order to rescue myself from the difficulties which leave the great city; yet I felt some reluctance to go. I would fain surrounded me. I presently sank into a sleep, which endured dur have pursued the career of original authorship, which had just ing the remainder of the day, and the whole of the succeeding night. opened itself to me, and have written other tales of adventure. The I awoke about nine on the morrow, and spent my last threepence on bookseller had given me encouragement enough to do so; he had asa breakfast somewhat more luxurious than the immediately pre sured me that he should be always happy to deal with me for an ceeding ones, for one penny of the sum was expended on the pur article (that was the word) similar to the one I had brought him, chase of milk.
provided my terms were moderate; and the bookseller's wife, by her At the appointed hour I repaired to the house of the bookseller; complimentary language, had given me yet more encouragement. the bookseller was in his shop. "Ah," said he, as soon as I entered, But for some months past I had been far from well, and my original “I am glad to see you." There was an unwonted heartiness in the indisposition. brought on partly by the peculiar atmosphere of the bookseller's tones, an unwonted benignity in his face. “So," said big city, partly by anxiety of mind, had been much increased by the he, after a pause, “you have taken my advice, written a book of ad exertions which I had been compelled to make during the last few venture; nothing like taking the advice, young man, of your super days. I felt that, were I to remain where I was, I should die, or be
come a confirmed valetudinarian. I would go forth into the country, age ?'' said Francis Ardry, reproachfuily, after he had with some traveling on foot, and, by exercise and inhaling pure air, endeavor difficulty brought the mare to order." to recover my health,'leaving my subsequent movements to be de Lifting my hand, in which I held my stick, I took off my hat. termined by Providence
“How beautiful!" said I, looking the lady full in the face. But whither should I bend my course? Once or twice I thought “Comment?'' said the lady, inquiringly. of walking home to the old town, stay some time with my mother “Il dit que vous êtes belle comme un an je," said Francis Ardry, emand my brother, and enjoy the pleasant walks in the neighborhood; phatically. but, though I wished very much to see my mother and my brother, “Mais, à la bonne heure! arrêtez, mon ami,” said the lady to Francis and felt much disposed to enjoy the said pleasant walks, the old Ardry, who was about to drive off; “je voudrais bien causer un motown was not exactly the place to which I wished to go at this pres ment avec lui; arrêtez, il est délicieux.-Ext-ce bien ainci que vous traitez ent juncture. I was afraid the people would ask: Where are your vos amis?'' said she, passionately, as Francis Ardry lifted up his Northern Ballads? Where are your alliterative translations from whip. “Bon jour, Monsieur, bon jour," said she, thrusting her head Ab Gwilym--of which you were always talking, and with which you from the side and looking back, as Francis Ardry drove off at the promised to astonish the world? Now, in the event of such interro rate of thirteen miles an hour. zations, what could I answer? It is true I had compiled Newgate Lives and Trials, and had written the life of Joseph Sell, but I was
CHAPTER XXXIV. afraid that the people of the old town would scarcely consider these In about two hours I had cleared the great city, and got beyond as equivalents for the Northern Ballads and the songs of Ab Gwilym. the suburban villages, or rather towns, in the direction in which I I would go forth and wander in any direction but that of the old was traveling. I was in a broad and excellent road, leading I knew town.
not whither. I now slackened my pace, which had hitherto been But how one's sensibility on any particular point diminishes with great. Presently, coming to a milestone on which was graven nine time; at present, I enter the old town perfectly indifferent as to miles, I rested against it, and looking toward the vast city, which what the people may be thinking on the subject of the songs and had long ceased to be visible, I fell into a train of meditation. ballads. With respect to the people themselves, whether, like my I thought of all my ways and doings since the day of my first sensibility, their curiosity has altogether evaporated, or whether, arrival in that vast city-I had worked and toiled, and though I had which is at least equally probable, they never entertained any, one accomplished nothing at all commensurate with the hopes I had thing is certain, that never in a single instance have they troubled entertained previous to my arrival, I had achieved my own living, me with any remarks on the subject of the songs and ballads. preserved my independence, and become indebted to no one. I was
As it was ny intention to travel on foot, with a bundle and a stick, now quitting it, poor in purse, it is true, but not wholly empty: I despatched my trunk containing some few clothes and books to rather ailing, it may be, but not broken in health; and, with hope the old town. My preparations were soon made; in about three days within my bosom, had I not cause upon the whole to be thankful ? I was in readiness to start.
Perhaps there were some who, arriving at the same time under not Before starting, however, I bethought me of my old friend the more favorable circumstances, had accomplished much more, and apple-woman of London Bridge. Apprehensive that she might be whose future was far more hopeful-Good! But there night be laboring under the difficulties of poverty, I sent her a piece of gold others who, in spite of all their efforts, had been either trodden by the hands of a young maiden in the house in which I lived. The down in the press, nevermore to be heard of, or were quitting the latter punctually executed her commission, but brought me back mighty town broken in purse, broken in health, and oh! with not the piece of gold. The old woman would not take it; she did not one dear hope to cheer them. Had I not, upon the whole, abundant want it, she said. “Tell the poor thin lad,” she added, "to keep it cause to be grateful? Truly, yes! for himself, he wants it more than I."
My meditation over, I left the milestone and proceeded on my way Rather late one afternoon / departed from my lodging, with my in the same direction as before until the night began to close in. I stick in one hand and a small bundle in the other, shaped my course had always been a good pedestrian; but now, whether owing to into the southwest: when I first arrived, somewhat more than a year disposition or to not having for some time past been much in the before, I had entered the city by the northeast. As I was not going habit of taking such lengthy walks, I began to feel not a little weary. home, I determined to take my departure in the direction the very Just as I was thinking of putting up for the night at the next inn or opposite to home.
public house I should arrive at, I heard what sounded like a coach Just as I was about to cross the street called the Haymarket, at coming vp rapidly behind me. Induced, perhaps, by the wear ness the lower part, a cabriolet, drawn by a magnificent animal, came which I felt, I stopped and looked wistfully in the direction of the dashing along at a furious rate; it stopped close by the curb-stone sound. Presently up came a coach, seemingly a mail, drawn by four where I was, a sudden pull of the reins nearly bringing the spirited | bounding horses—there was no one upon it but the coachman and .animal upon its haunches. The Jehu who had accomplished this the guard. When nearly parallel with me it stopped. “Want to feat was Francis Ardry. A small beautiful female, with flashing get up?" sounded a voice, in the true coachman like tone-half eyes, dressed in the extremity of fashion, sat beside himn.
querulous, half authoritative. I hesitated; I was tired, it is true, "Holloa, friend," said Francis Andry, "whither bound?”
but I had left London bound on a pedestrian excursion, and I did “I do not know," said I; "all I can say is, that I am about to not much like the idea of having recourse to a coach after accomleave London."
plisbing so very inconsiderable a distance. “Come, we can't be stay“And the means ?'' said Francis Ardry.
ing here all night," said the voice, more sharply than before. “I “I have them," said I, with a cheerful smile.
can ride a little way, and get down whenever I like," thought I, and "Qui est celui-ci?'' demanded the small female, impatiently.
springing forward I clambered up the coach, and was going to sit "C'est -mon ami le plus intime; so you were about leaving London down upon the box, next the coachman. “No, no," said the coachwithout telling me a word,” said Francis Ardry, somewhat angrily. man, who was a man about thirty, with a hooked nose and a red
" I intended to have written to you,' said I. “ What a splendid face, dressed in a fashionably cut great coat, with a fashionable black mare that is !"
castor on his head. “No, no, keep behind-the box a'n't for the “ Is she not?” said Francis Ardry, who was holding in the mare like of you,' said he, as he drove off;
the box is for lords, or genwith difficulty; "she cost a hundred guineas."
tlemen at least." I made no answer. "D that off-hand leader!" "Qu'est ce qu'il dit?'' demanded his companion.
said the coachman, as the right-hand front horse made a desperate “Il dit que le jument est, bion beau.”'
start at something he saw in the road; and, half rising, he with great “Allons, mon ami, il est tard,” said the beauty, with a scornful toss dexterity hit with his long whip the off-hand leader a cut on the off - of her head; " allons!"
cheek. These seem to be fine horses," said I. The coachman "Encore un moment," said Francis Ardry; " and when shall I see made no answer. " Nearly thoroughbred," I continued; the coachyou again ?"
inan drew his breath, with a kind of hissing sound, through his teeth. "I scarcely know," I replied. I never saw a more splendid turn "Come, young fellow, none of your chaff. Don't you think, because .out."
you ride on my mail, I'm going to talk to you about 'orses. I talk "Qu'est ce qu'il dit?” said the lady again.
to nobody about ’orses except lords." Well," said I, "I have been “Il dit que tout l'équipage est en assez bon goût.”
called a lord in my time." "It must have been by a thimble-rigger, “ Allons, c'est en ours," said the lady; le cheval même en a peur," then," said the coachman, bending back, and half turning his face added she, as the mare reared up on high.
round with a broad leer. “You have hit the mark wonderfully," "Can you find nothing else. to.admire but the mare and the equip said I. “You coachmen, whatever else you may be, are certainly