صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

and the hidden virtue of this wand, I perceive you have lost a horse.

Cred. You have cast your figure right. My poor Trot has been gone ever since the twentieth day of June.

Conj. [Moving his wand over the circle, and touching particular characters.] Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer; that is it precisely. You are under a little mistake, Sir; it was on the twentieth night of June.

Bluster. You are right, you are right, Mister Conjurer. The same night I had my watch stolen.

Conj. Aries, March; Taurus, April; Gemini, May; Cancer, June. On the night of June twentieth, precisely at twenty-three minutes past twelve, the horse was stolen from your pasture by a thief.

Blust. There, brother Credulous, you have it as exact as the multiplication table.

Cred. Strange what learning will do! [Giving a piece of money to the Conjurer.] Now, Sir, be so good as to tell me where the horse is, and how I shall find the very thief. Rascal! I shall have you now,

[To himself. Conj. [Making characters in his book.] The stars are inauspicious at present. Mercury, the patron of thieves, bears rule to-night. I shall be able to detect him to-morrow. Hah! that is a lucky figure. Quod erat demonstrandum. I have got a clue to the watch in spite of Mercury.

Blust. Put me in a way of finding it, and you shall be well paid. We must secure our houses, brother Credulous, or this rogue of a Mercury will have our very beds from under us, before morning.

Conj. It shall be forthcoming immediately. [Figuring in his book.] One hundred and twenty-seven rods northeasterly from this table, in Chinese measure, lies a hollow tree; in that tree lies your watch. Enter LONGSTAFF, an OFFICER, two WITNESSES,

and THINKWELL. Betty. Bless me! half the town will be here: it is time for me to go.

[Exit.

Blust. Mr. Longstaff, be so good as not to interrupt the Conjurer. He has just told me where my watch is, and will detect the thief with a few figures

more.

Longstaff. My duty obliges me to interrupt him. We have your watch, and are come to secure the thief. [To the Conjurer.] You have run at large, and defrauded the honest and ignorant long enough. By virtue of this warrant, you are the state's prisoner.

Conj. What trick shall I try now! I am detected at last.

[Aside. Cred. You must be misinformed, Mr. Longstaff. This man is so far from being a thief, that he is a greater torment to them than their own consciences.

Long. Hear the evidence of these gentlemen, and you may alter

your

mind. 1st Witness. I suppose this watch to be yours, Mr. Bluster.

Blust. It is the very same; the chain only changed.

1st Wit. I happened to overhear him talking with one of his gang last evening. This watch, with a number of other articles, was to be hidden in a hollow tree. This impostor, to maintain the credit of a Conjurer was to inform the owners, on inquiry, where they were, upon their paying him for the imposition. I have been so fortunate as to secure one of the partners in this trade. And as I heard this gentleman, for whom you have so much regard, had taken up lodgings at your house, I did not choose to interrupt you till there was full proof of his guilt. The stolen goods which he described, and we have found, are sufficient evidence against him. · Cred. Villain! a halter is too good for your neck. May I be taught common sense by a monkey, if ever I am duped again in such a manner.

2d Wit. My evidence tends rather to impeach the character of my townsmen, than this worthless fellow's. All I can say, is that several months ago, he travelled this road in character of a tinker; and now all our young girls, old maids, and ignorant fellows, are run

3

ning after this wise Conjurer to buy the history of their lives, which a little while since, they were weak enough to give him for nothing.

Think. I hope the impostor will be brought to justice, and we to our senses; and that after paying this infatuated devotion to vice and ignorance, virtue and true knowledge may have our more serious veneration.

LongGentlemen, assist me to conduct him to prison.

[Exeunt omnes.

W

EXTRACT FROM MR. PITT'S SPEECH IN THE BRI

TISH PARLIAMENT, JAN. 20, 1775.
THEN your lordships look at the papers trans-

mitted to us from America; when you consider their decency, firmness and wisdom, you cannot but respect

their cause and wish to make it your own. For myself, I must declare and avow, that in all my read. ing and observation, and it has been my

favourite study: I have read Thucydides, and have studied and admired the master-states of the world:) I say I must declare, that, for solidity and reasoning, force of sagacity, and wisdom of conclusion, under such a complication of difficult circumstances, no nation, or body of men can stand in preference to the General Congress at Philadelphia. I trust it is obvious to your lordships, that all attempts to impose servitude upon such men, to establish despotism over such a mighty continental nation, must be vain, must be fatal.

We shall be forced, ultimately, to retract; let us retract while we can, not when we must. I say we must necessarily undo these violent oppressive acts. They must be repealed. You WILL repeal them. I pledge myself for it, that you will in the end repeal them. I stake my reputation on it. I will consent to be taken for an idiot, if they are not finally repealed.

Avoid, then, this humiliating, disgraceful necessity. With a dignity becoming your exalted situation, make

the first advances to concord, peace and happiness: for it is your true dignity, to act with prudence and justice. That you should first concede, is obvious from sound and rational policy. Concession comes with better grace, and more salutary effects from superior power; it reconciles superiority of power with the feelings of men; and establishes solid confidence on the foundations of affection and gratitude.

Every motive, therefore, of justice and of policy, of dignity and of prudence, urges you to allay the ferment in America, by a removal of your troops froin Boston; by a repeal of your acts of Parliament; and by demonstration of amicable dispositions towards your colonies. On the other hand, every danger and every hazard impend, to deter you from perseverance in your present ruinous measures. Foreign war hange ing over your heads by a slight and brittle thread: France and Spain watching your conduct, and wait. ing for the maturity of your errors; with a vigilant eye to America, and the temper of your colonies, more than their own concerns, be they what they may.

To conclude, my lords; if the ministers thus persevere in misadvising and misleading the King, I will not say, that they can alienate the affections of his subjects from his crown; but I will affirm, that they will make the crown not worth his wearing: I will not say that the King is betrayed; but I will pronounce, that the kingdom is undone.

SPEECH OF GALGACHUS TO THE CALEDONIAN

ARMY.
Countrymen, and Fellow-Soldiers,
HEN I consider the cause, for which we have

drawn our swords, and the necessity of striking an effectual blow before we sheathe them again, I feel joyful hopes arising in my mind, that this day an opening will be made for the restoration of British

liberty, and for shaking off the infamous yoke of Ro.
man slavery. Caledonia is yet free. The all-grasping
power of Rome has not yet been able to seize our
liberty. But it is to be preserved only by valor.
You are not to expect to escape

the
ravage

of the general plunderers of mankind, by any sentiment of justice in them. When the countries which are more accessible have been subdued, they will then force their way into those which are harder to be overcome. And if they should conquer the dry land, over the whole world, they will then think of carrying their arms beyond the ocean, to see whether there be not certain unknown regions, which they may attack, and reduce under sabjection to the Roman empire.

For we see that if a country is thought to be powerful in arms, the Romans attack it because the conquest will be glorious; if inconsiderable in the military art, because the victory will be easy; if rich, they are drawn thither by the hope of plunder; if poor, by the desire of fame.

The east, and the west, the south, and the north, the face of the whole earth is the scene of their military achievments. The world is too little for their ambition, and their avarice. Their supreme joy seems to be ravaging, fighting, and shedding of blood; and when they

have unpeopled a region, so that there are none left alive to bear arms, they say they have given peace to that country,

Our distance from the seat of government, and our natural defence by the surrounding ocean, render us obnoxious to their suspicions: for they know that Britons are born with an instinctive love of liberty: and they conclude that we must naturally be led to think of taking the advantage of our detached situation, to disengage ourselves, one time or other, from their oppression.

Thus, my countrymen and fellow-soldiers, suspected and hated as we ever must be by the Romans, there is no prospect of our enjoying even a tolerable

« السابقةمتابعة »