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whom you so highly honour by your condescension.”
What a charming person! mentally ejaculated Miss Ryland.
“I am, madam, an old bachelor: an odd volume of a set of books,' as Franklin would say; or the odd half of a pair of scissors, which, although it cannot cut any thing, may possibly serve to scrape a trencher.” — But be seated, ladies; pray be seated.
I am a man of no ceremony, and never suffer
in my presence.”
“ Not even the ceremony of matrimony," observed Miss Ryland, with a significant smile.”
“ True, madam, true. My business has been with matches of a very different description - quick matches, madam; quick matches, and balls have been my delight.”
“ Well am I assured, most gallant major, that the military character is ardent and precipitous; love at first sight,” added she, with a deep sigh, “and short courtships have ever met with powerful advocates in your profession. I wonder not, therefore, at your partiality to balls, which as you justly remark, have lighted many a match ; and such, according to my experience, have generally been quick matches.”
" Why zounds ! madam,” ejaculated the major, as he started from his seat, “ we are skirmishing in the dark, - you misunderstand me; I speak of the matches of war, not of love, and of the balls of cannon, not of Almack's; although I am ready to admit that in one respect these different matches should agree in not hanging fire, madam; and yet,” added the major, lowering his voice, as if suddenly affected by some painful reflection, “my precepts and practice have strangely differed. Harry! Harry! could thy noble spirit be conscious of the remorse of thy broken-hearted uncle !-- but, ladies, I entreat your pardon.”
At this allusion to the memory of the nephew, Miss Kitty unfurled her white flag, and was preparing to display some other signals of distress ; which the major no sooner perceived, than in a hurried manner he begged the ladies to abstain from any allusion to the agonising subject.
For reasons, which the reader will not have much difficulty in appreciating, these few words removed a load of anxiety from the breast of
Miss Kitty. Her feelings might be compared to those of the mariner, whose ship suddenly veers round by a change of wind, at the very moment it approaches a rocky lee shore. The conversation immediately took a new direction; the ladies enumerated the several families in the neighbourhood ; descanted upon the pride of the Seymours, the eccentricities of the vicar, the mysterious conduct of Mr. Richdale, the wonderful cures of Dr. Doseall, the curious inventions of Will Snaffle, the critical acumen of Jerry Styles ; in short, the poor major was assailed by a battery more incessant in its operations than that which opened upon him at the siege of Badajoz; at length, however, the fire began to slacken, the assailants having discovered that the citadel was not to be taken by assault. Upon their departure, Jacob was angrily summoned into the major's presence, in order to receive the explosions of indignation with which his master was doubly charged; and who, upon such occasions, employed the faithful servant, as he had formerly used a target when he had no better object to fire at.
May the old one fly away with thee, and toss thee in his bag of nails !” exclaimed the major ; “ all this comes of your chattering at the publichouse. That woman's tongue runs as fast, and with as much clattering, as a dog with an empty canister at its tail : but take care that I am not exposed to a repetition of this annoyance. Should the spinsters honour me with another call, inform them that I am from home; or tie up the knocker, and tell them I am sick, dead, buried; say any thing, but, for mercy's sake, spare me from such another visitation."
ELASTICITY. SPRINGS, THE GAME OF RICO
chet," OR DUCK AND DRAKE. -REFLECTED MOTION EXEMPLIFIED IN THE REBOUND OF A BALL. — ANIMALS THAT LEAP BY MEANS OF AN ELASTIC APPARATUS. — MR. TWADDLETON'S ARRIVAL. —A NEW SPECIES OF PUFFING, BY WHICH THE VICAR IS MADE TO CHANGE COUNTENANCE. THE DANCING BALLS. THE PEASHOOTER, -A FIGURE THAT DANCES ON A FOUNTAIN. - COMPOUND FORCES.
Early on Monday morning did the young group assemble in the library; they expected to have met the vicar, in order to resume those philosophical recreations in which they took so