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muttered between his teeth an icy 'á los pies de usted,' and ingloriously betook himself to flight.
Shame and mortification added wings to his feet. Turning neither to the right hand nor to the left, lest a chance side-glance should reveal the hateful nose, he shot swiftly forwards, haunted by an indefinable dread of something terrible to be encountered by looking back, and only to be shunned by speed of foot. A few steps brought him to the thickest of the throng, another sent him into the centre of a quadrille party. An earthquake could not have wrought direr mishaps than he did as he worked his way through it. Those who were tripping it on the fantastic toe found themselves on a sudden unceremoniously tripped up, and rolling fantastically on the hard marble pavement. As for the author of their overthrow, he was unconsciously pursuing his way with the air of a conqueror; breastplates and helmets, ruined past a tinsmith's skill, clashing at his feet; while his path was strewed with roses (artificial) from the hair of affrighted maidens. Regardless of these, and a thousand other impediments, he made no pause until he reached the outer door. There Don Manuel stopped, too breathless and faint to dive into the darkness beyond, where for ever would he gladly have entombed himself and his agitated spirits. His purpose changed, however, as the cool midnight air flowing into the heated rooms awakened calmer thoughts in his bewildered brain. The result of these deliberations was to suggest that he felt hungry-exceedingly hungry. He was in no mood to contest the point, and therefore turned away from the door, and with a slow and sober pace bent his steps towards the refreshment room. Throwing himself into a chair beside one of the nearest tables, he took up the bill of fare, and began to study it with great zeal. Nevertheless the past still engrossed his thoughts; for the waiter, whom he had summoned upon entering, had to report himself twice before the purport of his words was clearly understood.
'Ah! what do I wish to take? Hum-bring me—a nose.'
Sorry we have no noses,' said the attendant, but there are some excellent tongues at your service.'
Nonsense,' replied Don Manuel. • Vamos á ver,' he added, bring me some jamon de Asturias,' which was accordingly set before him.
While the pangs of hunger were being appeased, those of memory grew less sharp; each mouthful of savoury ham that disappeared from view falling like balm upon his vexed thoughts, and helping to banish some compunctious visitings regarding broken vows and a deserted phenomenon.
'Wonderful are the works of Nature!' was his inward remark, as he replenished his plate for the third time; but never was she so wonderful or so false as in this case, never. As for the usual specimens of her fancy which deform our streets, she seems to have been merely trying her hand at something new, and to have sent them into the world in disgust at her failure. But this is quite another thing. To chisel out a form of exquisite grace, and when nothing but a single stroke was wanting to make it faultless-to stay her hand, and pronounce her work perfect, is very inexcusable in Nature-I'm not sure
whether it isn't a decided case of malice prepense against the feelings of her children—and then to make us fancy it all loveliness, and to entrap us into loving it, and bestowing on it honied sentences! Fool that I was, to be so taken in!'
As remembrance thus touched upon the part he had so recently played, Don Manuel groaned aloud, and gnashed his teeth in a most violent manner, whereby a choice morsel of ham came to an untimely end; but, this outbreak over, his reflections by degrees rolled back to their former channel.
'Well, the fault is not mine, but Nature's; and, to speak the truth, I am afraid that now-a-days she has turned a swindler-yes, a low swindler. But if she has done me once, it shall only be once; for if she makes another attempt to impose on me, I'll immediately get up a society for putting her down. So let her beware.'
With this consoling reflection, and the aid of sundry vasos of Manzanilla, our hero's past adventure faded from his thoughts at the moment that some one proceeded to occupy a chair on the opposite side of the table. This of itself was not enough to attract his attention; but when a long black shadow crossed the board, and fell upon his plate, he lifted up his eyes with a mingled feeling of awe and amazement. Powers of grace! it was the nose. Confronting him with all its artillery of charms, and apparently in the happiest humour with itself and every one, its bright eyes sparkling with smiles appeared to invite a renewal of the conversation so abruptly terminated in the ballroom. By its side stood the tall cavalier we have alluded to before, now rather thrown into the background, and immovable and grave as a
To start up, with the intention of again escaping, was the first impulse of Don Manuel, after recovering from his astonishment; but his strength failed him as the nose, wreathed in a most fascinating smile, inquired if he was going away without inviting it to sup.
Can the force of audacity go further!' thought he, as he sank back in his chair in a state of petrifaction. To invite itself to sup with me!-me, whom it has tricked beyond endurance-whom it has seen escaping from its presence as from an accursed thing-to claim me as a friend! And then the cool familiarity of its manner: decidedly nothing human would have acted so. Have I committed some crime, and is this "goblin damn'd" sent to follow me wherever I go, as a punishment for my sins? Nothing more likely. I have heard of the evil eye that haunts people to their graves, and this must be a variety of the same tribe,-an evil nose, whose duty is to meet me unexpectedly at the corners of streets and in lone places, and to lean over my shoulder amid crowds, and make my life a chain of miseries. Pero venga loque venga, I defy its powers! and if it be of flesh,' he muttered, grasping his knife, and waving it aloft, 'bitterly shall it repent this presumption.'
Probably the nose descried the sanguinary complexion of his musings; for as his uplifted knife carved the air in dangerous vicinity, it drew back with some precipitation, doubtless unwilling to be cut down in the flower of its youth.
'I shall not cause you much expense,' were its next words: 'a glass of ponche á la romana, and nothing more.'
Thank heaven! it is flesh and blood after all,' thought Don Manuel; for I never heard of ghosts being addicted to liquor. Little mercy, however, shall I show it, for none it deserves for this impertinent freedom.'
'Senorita, he replied, 'I shall be delighted to offer you anything you choose to take; but, pardon me,' he added, in tones most cuttingly bland, will that nose permit a glass to reach your lips?'
Strange to say, the kindly interest exhibited in the question served only to augment the cheerfulness of his opposite, who laughingly requested him to be under no uneasiness on that account.
'But, talking of glasses,' she continued, had you stood before one ere enacting the runaway, you might have furnished yourself with a capital picture of horror. Being a poet, your fancy might have gleaned something new for dying scenes and speechless emotions. You do not object to copying from yourself, do you?'
Quite unpardonable was its assurance in daring even to address him; but this style of being facetious upon the awkward display he had made was doubly aggravating, and accordingly it stirred up within our hero the lowest deeps of his virtuous indignation.
What! to be treated with levity by a monstrosity like this!-a thing disowned by humanity!-it, that day after day should be sad and silent, conscious of being an outcast from kind feelings,-it, that should laugh at the shadow of a jest upon its own deformity, and be thankful for the honour done it,-that should stand afar off from the haunts of men, whose image it libels,-it to forget its place, and intrude among the well-proportioned and unblemished as an equal,nay, to launch its jest at one of them! That is a crime against society too deep to be forgiven, and therefore,' said our hero to himself, I owe it as a duty to myself and society to humble its insolence. I shall see if I cannot bring it to a proper sense of its misconduct. I believe, Senorita,' he said aloud, you have a taste for poetry?'
'You are not mistaken,' said the Serranita. Will you not favour us with a specimen of your muse? Pray translate into words the charms my mask concealed."
Hum-that is beyond my powers; but allow me, instead, to repeat a charming epigram of Alcazar. Far be it from me to insinuate anything; but it warns us to be on our guard against every face whose nose israther strongly developed.'
Having received the requisite permission, he then repeated the following lines:
Lady fair, no whisper goes
What! wondrous more! thou canst not tell?
That so interminable a feature,
Where'er it sprung, cannot end well.'
With the last line of the preceding effusion parting from his lips, Don Manuel directed a look at the delinquent organ, in expectation of seeing
it convulsed by all the agonies of remorse, or at least blushing a repentant crimson. But nothing of the kind followed. Far from being downcast, the object of his wrath, though nearly breathless from laughter, was loud in praises of his taste.
Very good, indeed,' it said.
"Where it ends"-capital! Really you are so amusing to-night, Don Manuel, that I must reward you by showing" where it ends.""
So saying, the unknown raised her hand to her head, and quick as thought the nose fell from its place, and lay on the table before our hero. How shall we paint his confusion and desperation of mind as he gazed on the astounding sight, and recalled the rudeness and unfeeling discourtesy of his previous conduct?
'Pecador de mi he exclaimed, it is of pasteboard-it is false, and the real one is not less perfect than the other features of her face. Oh, Senorita burst from his lips in the most penitent accents, and rushing forward, he was proceeding to throw himself at her feet to sue for pardon, to bewail his indiscretion in the most abject terms within the reach of language; but a gesture of impatience on the part of the unknown, blasted all his hopes. Rising from her seat, and taking the arm of her companion, she quitted the room with a slow and dignified step, very unlike the former precipitate retreat of Don Manuel, of whom she took no farther notice than by coldly bestowing on him a repelling beso á usted la mano.'
If for the rest of the night our hero wandered he knew not where, with no clear perception of anything; and if, on courting repose, he dreamt of being stabbed to the heart by a sabre-like nose, which, as he gasped his last, changed into a lovely ballet-dancer, who made his dying frame its stage, and indulged in pirouettes on the extreme tip of his own nasal feature; though his medical adviser might ascribe such unwholesome visions to indigestion, yet it is more probable that the origin of his malady might be traced to the Lonja of Seville.
Merrie England in the olden Time:
OR, PEREGRINATIONS WITH UNCLE TIM AND MR. BOSKY, OF little britaIN,
BY GEORGE DANIEL.
Dost thou think because thou art virtuous there shall be no more cakes and ale?'-SHAKSPEARE.
'My friends,'-continued Mr. Bosky, after an approving smack of the lips, Heaven bless his honour! and Thanks, my kind mistress! many happy returns of Saint Bartlemy! had testified the ballad-singer's hearty relish and gratitude for the refreshing draught over which he had just suspended his well-seasoned nose,* 'never may the mouths be stopped (except with a cup of good liquor) of these musical itinerants, from whose harmonious doggrel a curious history of men and manners might be gleaned, to humour the anti-social disciples of those devout publicans who substituted their discordant nasal twang for the solemn harmony of cathedral music; who altered St. Peter's phrase, "the Bishop of your souls," into "the Elder (!!) of your souls" for "thy kingdom come," brayed "thy Commonwealth come!" and smuggled the water into their rumpuncheons, which they called wrestling with the spirit, and making the enemy weaker! "Show me the popular ballads of the time, and I will show you the temper and tastes of the people." I delight in a
* Thom: Brewer, my Mus: Servant, through his proneness to good fellowshippe having attained to a very rich and rubicund nose, being reproved by a friend for his too frequent use of strong drinkes and sacke, as very pernicious to that distemper and inflammation in his nose. "Nay, faith," says he, "if it will not endure sacke, it is no nose for me."-L'Estrange, No. 578. Mr. Jenkins.
+Robin Conscience,' an ancient ballad (suggested by Lydgate's London Lackpenny,') first printed at Edinburgh in 1683, gives a curious picture of London Tradesmen, &c. Robin goes to Court, but receives cold welcome; thence to Westminster Hall. It were no great matter,' quoth the lawyers, if Conscience quite were knock'd on th' head.' He visits Smithfield, and discovers how the horse-coursers' artfully coerce their 'lame jades' to 'run and kick.' Then Long Lane, where the brokers hold conscience to be but nonsense.' The butter-women of Newgate Market, claw him, and the bakers brawl at him. At Pye Corner, a cook, glancing at him as the Devil did look o'er Lincoln,' threatens to spit him. The salesmen of Snow Hill would have stoned him; the 'fish-wives of Turn-again Lane rail at him; the London Prentices of Fleet Street, with their What lack you, countryman?' scamper away from him. The 'haberdashers, that sell hats; the mercers and silk-men, that live in Paternoster Row,' all set upon him. He receives no better treatment in CheapsideA cheesemonger in Bread Street; the lads that wish Lent were all the year' in Fish Street; a Merchant on the Exchange; the gallant girls,' whose brave shops of ware' were 'up stairs;' and the drapers and poulterers of Gracechurch Street, to whom con science was 'Dutch or Spanish,' flout and jeer him. A trip to Southwark, the King's Bench, and to the Blackman Street demireps, proves that conscience is nothing.' In St. George's Fields, rooking rascals,' playing at nine pins,' tell him to 'prate on till he is hoarse.' Espying a windmill hard by, he hies to the miller, whose excuse for not dealing with him was, that he must steal out of every bushel a peck, if not three gallons. Conscience then trudges on to try what would befall i' the country,' whither we will not follow him.