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contres ? Nothing of the kind. Ren- " Your mother, probably, is totally contres? You talk like a militia unconscious of the fact; and, should she officer. Rencontres? You'll soon hear any one else assert such a thing, dismiss all that kind of thing from would deny it most strenuously.” your thoughts, after you have seen "Nay, but," said Gingham," though two or three rencontres with the I have neither sister nor wife, and French. Rencontres ? No, no; no supposing my dear mother to be blind field of forty footsteps at headquarters. to my personal defects, I have-in Rencontres? It would be a perfect short, Mr Y-, before I left Lonabsurdity, where men have the chance don, I took a tender leave of her of being shot gratis every day of their whom I hope to persuade, on my next lives, without going out of the way return from the Peninsula, to accept for it. Rencontres ? No; I did not the hand and the heart of a Gingham. mean that.
What I meant to say She did not tell me that my nose was was this: you would infallibly be crooked. She mentioned various obmade a general butt. Rencontres ? stacles to our union; but she never Why, Mr Y if you show any mentioned that." nonsense of that sort, you'll be tor- “ Then,” said I, “ depend upon it, mented to death. Rencontres ? Oh, she means to have you. And depend what lots of fun they'll take out of upon this, too; she will tell you your you! Meanwhile, think yourself for- nose is crooked when you have made tunate that you are now getting a her Mrs Gingham, if she does not tell seasoning. I am truly glad, for your you so before." sake, that you have had the opportu- " As to my walking sideways," nity here at Falmouth, and will have said Gingham, “that's a palpable the opportunity on your passage out, fiction." of seeing something of military men Here," said I, come to this exand modes before you join. You tremity of the room, and place yourmay, and probably will be dubbed, self opposite the glass." He came, on your arrival, a Jobany Newcome. and placed himself accordingly. But, at any rate, you will not be a “Now walk straight down upon Johnny Raw."
the glass, keeping your eye fixed upon Gingham closed the conference by your reflected nose.” walking to the other end of the room, “ What nose? Which nose?” said and steadfastly contemplating his own Gingham, in a state of obvious alarm. beautiful physiognomy in the glass. “Do you mean the nose in my During our conversation, his hand face ?" had frequently visited his nose. He “I mean your nose in the glass.". now stood opposite the mirror, slew. He walked as I had directed. ing his head first this way, then that, " Well, really,” said Gingham, and at length broke silence :
"it's extraordinary; it's very curious. “Well, I was not aware of it; but when I walk and look at my nose in I do think that my nose is a little the glass, it appears quite straight crooked.”
again-just as it ought to be, in the “ I presume," said I, “ you have no middle of my face.” sisters ?”
“That's just it,” said I.
" Then “I have none,” replied Gingham. you walk sideways. Depend upon it,
“Nor are you, I apprehend, a mar- if you walked straight, your nose ried man?"
would appear crooked." “There, alas, you are right again," He repeated the experiment again said Gingham; " but what has that and again, muttering to himself
, to do with it?"
“Very remarkable, very curious ; " Your wife, or your sisters, if you quite a natural phenomenon." had any, would have told you that “Don't distress yourself about your you have a very crooked nose." nose," said I; “it is a good enough
" Well, but," said Gingham, nose, in magnitude respectable, though "there's my mother. My dear not strictly rectilinear. Make yourmother never told me that my nose self easyand say, with Erasmus, was crooked."
* Nihil me pænitet hugeous nasi.?"
Where Gingham got his classical -screw-pneumatic chemistry-soda knowledge, I had not at this time water-pop !" He left with us the ascertained. Certain it is, he was a odour of a very bad cigar, which led very fair classic. But there was one Gingham to remark that he was dreadful drawback to his character, “backy plenus” in more senses than and, in a man of his gravity, a strange one: I mean his offensive, horrid The influence of bad example is practice of making most atrocious dreadful. Emerging from the town in Latin puns. A pun in English he our way to the castle, we met a merry viewed with utter contempt. It party, male and female, all equestristirred his bile. No English pun ans save some six or eight, who occuescaped his lips. But for a Latin pied the interior and exterior of a pun, be scrupled not to lay under post-chaise. Gingham, who saw into contribution even the first-rate Latin a thing at once, pronounced them a poets, Virgil, Ovid-nay, his favour wedding party ; and a buxom dame, ite author, Horace; and if I, influ- who was mounted on a lively little enced by bad example, was weak west country galloway, the bride. enough, in an unguarded moment, to “Pony subit conjux," said I. “ Yes," commit the same offence, he stole my said Gingham ; “ but if that dear lady puns, and made them again as his rides so near the carriage, oh! oh!
oh! she will infallibly be capsized! On the eve of our embarkation we 'Pony sub curru nimium propinqui !"" strolled forth, after an early dinner, We reached the bill in time, saw & for a parting view of the sunset from glorious sunset, and returned to letthe castle. Walking up town, we ter-writing, and a light supper on met the man of rum, the sleep-murder- hashed duck. ing Macbeth of the mail-coach. Still As Gingham appears more than he was talking--for want of company, once upon the stage in the course of talking to himself. But his eyes were my Peninsular adventures, and I set, half-closed, and dim ; his aspect should really be sorry to annoy the was peculiarly meditative, and his reader, as much as I was annoyed course curvilinear. He had taken on myself, with his perpetual and abomiboard plus æquo of his own samples. nable perversions of classic latinity, I Perceiving our approach, he gave a beg leave to dispose of this part of the lurch to clear us. But his legs, being subject at once, before we get to sea. not altogether under management, Suffice it to say, then, that in the brought him exactly in the direction spring of the year 1838, just a quarter which he sought to shun; bis sto- of a century after the period of which mach, which had already suffered so I am now writing, I once more left many assaults in the coach, most un- London for Falmouth, en route to Lisfortunately impinged upon my elbow; bon, though with an object far diffeand again it was "ugh !" His gummy rent from that of my voyage now to eyes expanded, and gleamed on us be recorded, and in a far different calike two fresh-opened oysters. Awhile pacity. Science, in these five-andhe gazed with drunken gravity ; then, twenty years, bad done wonders ; and turning round, bent over the roadside I had secured my passage in London, gutter, as if about to tumble in, and not by a miserable tub of a sailing jocosely imitated the operation of packet, but by a well-found and fast drawing a cork. His organs of vision Peninsular steamer. The day before then assumed a slow movement of the steamer was to start from Falhorizontal oscillation, and gradually mouth, I walked down to the water's settled on a pastry-cook's shop over side to take a view of her. On the the way. Towards this point he di- quay stood Gingham. By one of rected his zigzag approaches, recom- those strange coincidences which somemencing his agreeable conference with times happen in life, we had again met himself, in terms of which we could at Falmouth, and were again to cross catch only the words—" Archimedes the Bay of Biscay in company. I recognised him : he did not recognise reticule one size less than a pannier; me. Time had somewhat changed emerging from which pannier appeared his look, his dress very little. Its the ugly mug of an enormous Portupredominant aspect was still white. guese red ram cat, the pet of the His nose, too, was unmistakeable. stewardess, and the constant compaPerceiving at once that he was, like nion of her Peninsular voyages. myself, a passenger to the Peninsula, “My cat inter omnes," said GingI availed myself of the freedom con- ham. ceded in such cases, and commenced a conversation by some remark on the But I have rambled, and am a steamer.
quarter of a century wide of the mark. “I presume, sir," said he, “ you are The period of which I have now to a passenger ?”
write, the important period to which "Yes, Mr Gingham, and so are my present narrative refers, is not the you. Glad to meet you.” He stared, more recent year, 1838, but the rebut admitted the fact.
moter year, 1813, glorious in the “But, sir," said he, "you have the annals of England ; the year that saw advantage of me."
the commencement of Napoleon's "Well, well,” said I, “ you'll find downfal; the year of triumph and me out to-morrow on board the Gua- rout beneath the walls of Vittoria ; dalquivir. Fine ship that. To-mor- the year of a still sterner and equally row, you know, as Horace said, when successful conflict at St Sebastian ; he was off by the steamer :-. Cras, the year, too, that furnished a name ingins ! iterabimus æquor!"
for a princess of a royal line, that The effect was instantaneous. Ging- QUEEN VICTORIA who, in her high ham did not speak, he shouted: estate and royal clemency, remem“Dine with me: I have got a john dory.” bered and rewarded the long-forgotten
We walked off to the town-I rub- and long unrecompensed heroes of bing my shoulder, which Gingham those bygone times. In the early shook, when he shook my hand-he, spring of that year, 1813, I was there for a few paces, thoughtful and silent. at Falmouth, a raw youth, launched I expected a burst of sentiment. on the wide world in search of adven
" By the bye,” said Gingham, ture, burning to reach the headquar" while your hand was in, you might ters of the Peninsular army, fully just as well have quoted the other line, capable of making a fool of myself for that, also, refers to our voyage." when I got there, and anxiously wait" The other line ?"
ing for the sailing of the Princess “ Yes, the other line. Don't you Wilhelmina gun-brig, whicb, for want see that pair of rooks flying over the of a better, performed the office of barbour ?"
Lisbon packet. It was well for me “ Rooks fly in droves. I see no that, at Falmouth, I had already fallen rooks."
into friendly hands. “Right,” said he ; they are a On the morning of our embarkation, couple of crows."
March the —th, 1813, Gingham went “But the line from Horace, referring, early on board the packet, for his perto our voyage ?"
sonal baggage was bulky and various, “Not only referring to it," said to see to its stowage-part in his berth, Gingham, “but highly encouraging. part in the hold. It was settled be• Nil desperandum two crow duce, et tween us that he was to return ashore, auspice two crow."
that we were to breakfast together at "Gingham, you are incorrigible." the hotel, and afterwards go off to
To reach the street from the water's gether to the packet, which was still side we had to pass through a narrow lying in the harbour, and was to sail passage, and there met the stewardess
about noon. of the steamer, who was going on I waited breakfast for Gingham, but board. She stalked along in clogs on no Gingham came. At length I retiptoe, her left hand gathering up, be- ceived a long note from him, dated on hind, her cloak, gown, petticoat, &c., board the packet. It began by stating while her right hand bore an umbrella that an attempt had been made to one size larger than a parasol, and a impose upon him, and that he was determined not to stand it. The at- board, he was on board himself, and tempted imposition, as I learned from his note advised me respecting his rehim afterwards, was this :
maining matters ashore. He contingGingham walked down from the ed below, having resolved, as he told hotel to the water's side, and engaged me afterwards, to keep the boatmen a boat, which was to take him on waiting alongside till the packet was board the packet for eighteenpence; off, and then give them ninepence. he, Gingham, understanding thereby, Meanwhile he sent up, by the steward, according to the tenor of many previ- an injunction to the people on deck, ous bargains at the same rate of pay- who enjoyed not a little the false posiment, that he was to be taken on tion of the two boatmen, not on any board, and put on shore again. On account to let them come on board. this, however, the last day of our Gingham's note to me, which was, abode at Falmouth, the two boatmen, as I have already intimated, a beauthinking they might safely try it on, tiful specimen of commercial permanand conjecturing also that Gingham's ship, was to the following effect :time might possibly be too valuable to That he was detained on board by be wasted in discussion, determined to his determination to resist a gross take a different view of the subject, imposition; that the laundress had and exact a second fare for landing still in her keeping a small quantity him. The boat reached the packet, of his linen, which she was to bring Gingham went on board, the boatmen to the hotel about breakfast-time; made fast to a harbour-buoy, and that he had settled with the servants waited the result. Gingham went that morning; and that the landlady below, made his arrangements, came was indebted to him in the sum of on deck, and hailed bis boat to take two shillings, he having paid his bill him ashore. The elder boatman the night before, in which bill was civilly touched his hat, and remarked, included the charge of two shillings with a winning smile, that they hadn't for a cold-meat breakfast, which he been paid "nuffiri” for bringing him should not take; that he requested on board. Gingham replied, that he me to get back the two shillings from should pay as usual when they had the landlady; that he would also got back to the quay. The boatman, thank me to receive the linen from courteous as before, again touched his the laundress, see that it was correct hat, and answered, simpering, “ Beg per invoice, (washing-bill
, I presume,) your pardon, sir, but this ear last day, check her account, liquidate it, and when the peckit's hoff, jeddlemen hol- bring the linen on board with me. ways pays bofe ways, cummin aboord, Meanwhile a circumstance arose, and gooin back again.” “Oh, do which was of great moment in itself, they ?" said Gingham, and walked and gave Gingham a further advandown into the cabin, where he quietly tage in his affair with the two Falwrote his note to me, in a hand that mouth lads. An extra mail for beat copperplate ; and breakfasted Lisbon had arrived from London, upon sea biscuit, junk, and ship’s sent off by despatch to catch the cocoa, the steward not having yet got packet before she sailed; and, by off his stock of groceries for the voyage management of Gingham's partners, Everybody on board knew Gingham, who were influential people, brought and he had no difficulty in getting Gingham letters on a matter of some his note brought ashore in the ship's importance. These letters were taken boat, without the knowledge of the off to Gingham by a trusty drabtwo 'longshore fellows, who were riding coated Falmonth "Friend,” in another at the buoy, and who still thought 'longshore boat, and rendered it abthey had the best of the bargain-as it solutely requisite that he should go is a rule in harbour, or at any rate was ashore, and perhaps defer his voyage. in those days, that no private passen. The packet at this time was surger by a packet passed or repassed rounded with boats and bustle, the except by 'longshore boats. Gingham two boatmen still fast to the buoy ; was now all right, and did not care and Gingham had no difficulty in one farthing for the boatmen; for he returning ashore by the boat which already had the bulk of his things on brought off his mercantile friend,
without being observed by them. soil—two ancient, expressive, and In fact, they were half asleep, still kindred languages, which I had secure, as they thought, of their conned rudimentally on the banks victim, and affording no small sport of Cam. Nor did I dream that I to the crew of the packet, who saw went to earn a prospective claim to how things were going. I shall only a Peninsular Medal; and jot down mention here, that the communica- mental memoranda, still vividly legition, received by Gingham from Lon- ble, of all I heard and saw, for the indon, related to a grand financial formation and amusement of readers speculation, an idea of his own, then unborn. 6 Gooin' off to the having reference to the monetary peckit, sir? Here, Bill, hand the transactions at headquarters, which jeddleman's boxes.' Then, when we were very large, and as well conducted were half way to the brig,~" Wherry as circumstances permitted, but at- 'ot on the worter, sir. Ope you'll be tended with great difficulties, and ginnerous a little hextry for the lugconsiderable loss to the British gov- gidge, sir. Wherry dry work pullin', ernment. Gingham's plan would have sir." been backed by private capital to any Gingham, when I reached the amount. It was knocked on the head packet, was not on board. The cause by the peace of 1814: but I have more of his absence was explained to me to say about it hereafter.
by the steward, who assisted in stowTrue to her time, the laundressing away the contents of the two arrived at the hotel ; not bringing, as buckbaskets in Gingham's berth. Gingham had described it, a small During this operation, the steward, quantity of linen, but attended by a who fully participated in the antiman with a barrow, wheeling two pathy to 'longshore boatmen common large buckbaskets, each piled with an to his class, communicated to me, immense heap of shirts, white in- with no small glee, the occurrences of expressibles, white double-breasted the morning; and begged me to take dimity waistcoats, — in short every a sight, when I went on deck, of the thing white,--a stock for a voyage to two expectant gentlemen at the buoy. China. On the interior of the collar There they were, sure enough, very of one of the said white double- much at their ease-quite satisfied breasted dimity waistcoats, I noticed that Gingham would want to be taken the cypher * !-No. 1 of the fourth that theirs was the boat that must
ashore again before the packet sailed, dozen! So profuse was Gingham in take him, and that they had the game his provision for the habiliment of his in their own hands. own elegant exterior. I settled with On deck I met our three breakfast the laundress, engaged the barrow- guests of the day before. They man to go off with me in charge of greeted me cordially, made many the linen, and take back the baskets, inquiries after Gingham, and introfinished my breakfast, paid my bill, duced me, as a particular old crony and went on board. Such was my of theirs,' to Staff-Surgeon Pledget, first embarkation for the Peninsula. who had arrived by the mail overLittle dreaming that there was a night, and was also a passenger to spoke in my wheel, and that some time Lisbon, on his return to the British was still to elapse between my depar- army. I soon began to perceive that ture from Falmouth and my arrival it was a standing rule with my three at the British headquarters, I had new acquaintances, regular “Peninlonged for the day of the packet's sulars," to extract fun from even the sailing. But now, when the wished- most common incidents-in fact, from for moment had arrived, a lot of little everybody and everything.
Staffthings, coming upon me at the last Surgeon Pledget, as able a man in quite put it out of my head that I was his profession as any staff-surgeon quitting my native land, and about to attached to the Peninsular army, was enter on new scenes, mingle with matter-of-fact personified; and the strangers, embark in active life, dignified cordiality with which he and master-where alone they could received an old crony of theirs, evibe mastered, on their vernacular dently afforded the three hoaxers