« ZurückWeiter »
Mr. Oldham* lets us know, that he was affrighted from the thought of such an employment, by the scandalous sort of treatment which often accompanies it :
Some think themselves exalted to the sky, If they light in some noble family: Diet, a horse, and thirty pounds a year, Besides th' advantage of his lordship's ear, The credit of the business, and the state, Are things that in a youngster's sense sound great. Little the unexperienc'd wretch does know What slavery he oft must undergo. Who, though in silken scarf and cassock drest, Wears but a gayer livery at best. When dinner calls the implement must wait With holy words to consecrate the meat, But hold it for a favour seldom known, If he be deigu'd the honour to sit down. Soon as the tarts appear ; • Sir Crape, withdraw, Those dainties are not for a spiritual maw. Observe your distance, and be sure to stand Hard by the cistern with your cap in hand : There for diversion you may pick your teeth, Till the kind voider comes for your relief.' Let others, who such meannesses can brook, Strike countenance to every great man's look ; I rate my freedom higher. This author's raillery is the raillery of a friend, and does not turn the sacred order into ridicule; but is a just censure on such persons as take advantage, from the necessities of a man of merit, to impose on him hardships that are by no means suitable to the dignity of his profession.
* In · A Satire addressed to a Friend that is about to leave the University,' &c.
N° 256. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 1710.
Nostrum est tantas componere lites.
Virg. Ecl. iii. 108. 'Tis ours such warın contentions to decide.-R. WYNNE.
The Proceedings of the Court of Honour, held in
Sheer-lane, on Monday, the twentieth of November, 1710, before Isaac BICKERSTAFF, Esquire,
Censor of Great Britain. PETER PLUMB, of London, merchant, was indicted by the honourable Mr. Thomas Gules, of Gule-hall in the county of Salop, for that the said Peter Plumb did, in Lombard-street, London, between the hours of two and three in the afternoon, meet the said Mr. Thomas Gules, and, after a short salutation, put on his hat, value five-pence, while the honourable Mr. Gules stood bare-headed for the space of two seconds. It was farther urged against the criminal, that, during his discourse with the prosecutor, he feloniously stole the wall of him, having clapped his back against it in such a manner, that it was impossible for Mr. Gules to recover it again at his taking leave of him. The prosecutor alleged, that he was the cadet of a very ancient family; and that, according to the principles of all the younger brothers of the said family, he had never sullied himself with business, but had chosen rather to starve, like a man of honour, than do any thing beneath his quality. He produced several witnesses, that he had never employed himself beyond the twisting of a whip, or the making of a pair of nut-crackers, in which he only worked for his diversion, in order to make a
present now and then to his friends.
The prisoner being asked, “what he could say for himself,' cast several reflections upon the honourable Mr. Gules; as, “ that he was not worth a groat; that nobody in the city would trust him for a halfpenny; that he owed him money which he had promised to рау.
him several times, but never kept his word; and, in short, that he was an idle, beggarly fellow, and of no use to the public.' This sort of language was very severely reprimanded by the Censor, who told the criminal, that he spoke in contempt of the court, and that he should be proceeded against for contumacy, if he did not change his style. The prisoner, therefore, desired to be heard by his counsel, who urged in his defence, 'that he put on his hat through ignorance, and took the wall by accident. They likewise produced several witnesses, that he made several motions with his hat in his hand, which are generally understood as an invitation to the person we talk with to be covered; and that, the gentleman not taking the hint, he was forced to put on his hat, as being troubled with a cold. There was likewise an Irishman, who deposed, that he had heard him cough three-and-twenty times that morning. And as for the wall, it was alleged, that he had taken it inadvertently, to save himself from a shower of rain which was then falling. The Censor, having consulted the men of honour who sat at his right hand on the bench, found they were all of opinion, that the defence made by the prisoner's counsel did rather aggravate than extenuate his crime; that the motions and intimations of the hat were a token of superiority in conversation, and therefore not to be used by the criminal to a man of the prosecutor's quality, who was likewise vested with a double title to the wall at the time of their conversation, both as it was the upper hand, and as it was a shelter from
the weather. The evidence being very full and clear, the jury, without going out of the court, declared their opinion unanimously,
by the mouth of their foreman, that the prosecutor was bound in honour “ to make the sun shine through the criminal,' or, as they afterward explained themselves, to whip him through the lungs.'
The Censor, knitting his brows into a frown, and looking very sternly upon the jury, after a little pause, gave them to know, that this court was erected for the finding out of penalties suitable to offences, and to restrain the outrages of private justice; and that he expected they should moderate their verdict.' The jury therefore retired, and being willing to comply with the advices of the Censor, after an hour's conversation, delivered their opinion as follows:
That, in consideration this was Peter Plumb's first offence, and that there did not appear any malice prepense in it, as also that he lived in good reputation among his neighbours, and that his taking the wall was only se defendendo, the prosecutor should let him escape
with life, and content himself with the slitting of his nose, and the cutting off both his ears.' Mr. Bickerstaff, smiling upon the court, told them, “ that he thought the punishment, even under its present mitigation, too severe; and that such penalties might be of ill consequence in a trading nation. He therefore pronounced sentence against the criminal in the following manner :—that his hat, which was the instrument of offence, should be forfeited to the court; that the criminal should go to the warehouse from whence he came, and thence, as occasion should require, proceed to the Exchange, or Garraway's coffee-house, in what manner he pleased; but that neither he, nor any of the family of the Plumbs, should hereafter appear in the streets of London out of their coaches, that so the footway might be left
and undisturbed for their betters.' Dathan, a pedling Jew, and T. R -, a Welshman, were indicted by the keeper of an alehouse in Westminster, for breaking the peace and two earthen mugs, in a dispute about the antiquity of their families, to the great detriment of the house, and disturbance of the whole neighbourhood. Dathan said for himself,' that he was provoked to it by the Welshman, who pretended that the Welsh were an ancienter people than the Jews; whereas,' says he, • I can shew by this genealogy in my hand, that I am the son of Mesheck, that was the son of Naboth, that was the son of Shalem, that was the son of
- The Welshman here interrupted him, and told him, that he could produce shennalogy as well as himself;' for ' that he was John. ap Rice, ap Shenken, ap Shones. He then turned himself to the Censor, and told him in the same broken accent, and with much warmth, that the Jew would needs uphold, that King Cadwallader was younger than Issachar.' Mr. Bickerstaff seemed very much inclined to give sentence against Dathan, as being a Jew; but finding reasons, by some expressions which the Welshman let fall in asserting the antiquity of his family, to suspect that the said Welshman was a Præ-Adamite, he suffered the jury to go out, without any previous admonition. After some time they returned, and gave their verdict, that it appearing the persons at the bar did neither of them wear a sword, and that consequently they had no right to quarrel upon a point of honour; to prevent such frivolous appeals for the future, they should both of them be tossed in the same blanket, and there adjust the superiority as they could agree on it between themselves.' The Censor confirmed the verdict.
Richard Newman was indicted by Major Punto,