Memoirs of Mr. Charles J. Yellowplush The Yellowplush Papers
William Makepeace Thackeray
Part 1 out of 4
This etext was prepared by Donald Lainson, firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEMOIRS OF MR. CHARLES J. YELLOWPLUSH
by WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY
MISS SHUM'S HUSBAND
THE AMOURS OF MR. DEUCEACE
MR. DEUCEACE AT PARIS:--
CHAP. I. The Two Bundles of Hay
II. "Honor thy Father"
IV. "Hitting the Nale on the Hedd"
V. The Griffin's Claws
VI. The Jewel
VII. The Consquinsies
VIII. The End of Mr. Deuceace's History. Limbo
IX. The Marriage
X. The Honey-moon
MR. YELLOWPLUSH'S AJEW
SKIMMINGS FROM "THE DAIRY OF GEORGE IV."
EPISTLES TO THE LITERATI
MEMOIRS OF MR. CHARLES J. YELLOWPLUSH
MISS SHUM'S HUSBAND.
I was born in the year one, of the present or Christian hera, and
am, in consquints, seven-and-thirty years old. My mamma called me
Charles James Harrington Fitzroy Yellowplush, in compliment to
several noble families, and to a sellybrated coachmin whom she
knew, who wore a yellow livry, and drove the Lord Mayor of London.
Why she gev me this genlmn's name is a diffiklty, or rayther the
name of a part of his dress; however, it's stuck to me through
life, in which I was, as it were, a footman by buth.
Praps he was my father--though on this subjict I can't speak
suttinly, for my ma wrapped up my buth in a mistry. I may be
illygitmit, I may have been changed at nuss; but I've always had
genlmnly tastes through life, and have no doubt that I come of a
The less I say about my parint the better, for the dear old creatur
was very good to me, and, I fear, had very little other goodness in
her. Why, I can't say; but I always passed as her nevyou. We led
a strange life; sometimes ma was dressed in sattn and rooge, and
sometimes in rags and dutt; sometimes I got kisses, and sometimes
kix; sometimes gin, and sometimes shampang; law bless us! how she
used to swear at me, and cuddle me; there we were, quarrelling and
making up, sober and tipsy, starving and guttling by turns, just as
ma got money or spent it. But let me draw a vail over the seen,
and speak of her no more--its 'sfishant for the public to know,
that her name was Miss Montmorency, and we lived in the New Cut.
My poor mother died one morning, Hev,n bless her! and I was left
alone in this wide wicked wuld, without so much money as would buy
me a penny roal for my brexfast. But there was some amongst our
naybors (and let me tell you there's more kindness among them poor
disrepettable creaturs, than in half a dozen lords or barrynets)
who took pity upon poor Sal's orfin (for they bust out laffin when
I called her Miss Montmorency), and gev me bred and shelter. I'm
afraid, in spite of their kindness, that my MORRILS wouldn't have
improved if I'd stayed long among 'em. But a benny-violent genlmn
saw me, and put me to school. The academy which I went to was
called the Free School of Saint Bartholomew's the Less--the young
genlmn wore green baize coats, yellow leather whatsisnames, a tin
plate on the left arm, and a cap about the size of a muffing. I
stayed there sicks years; from sicks, that is to say, till my
twelth year, during three years of witch I distinguished myself not
a little in the musicle way, for I bloo the bellus of the church
horgin, and very fine tunes we played too.
Well, it's not worth recounting my jewvenile follies (what trix we
used to play the applewoman! and how we put snuff in the old
clark's Prayer-book--my eye!); but one day, a genlmn entered the
school-room--it was on the very day when I went to subtraxion--and
asked the master for a young lad for a servant. They pitched upon
me glad enough; and nex day found me sleeping in the sculry, close
under the sink, at Mr. Bago's country-house at Pentonwille.
Bago kep a shop in Smithfield market, and drov a taring good trade
in the hoil and Italian way. I've heard him say, that he cleared
no less than fifty pounds every year by letting his front room at
hanging time. His winders looked right opsit Newgit, and many and
many dozen chaps has he seen hanging there. Laws was laws in the
year ten, and they screwed chaps' nex for nex to nothink. But my
bisniss was at his country-house, where I made my first ontray into
fashnabl life. I was knife, errint, and stable-boy then, and an't
ashamed to own it; for my merrits have raised me to what I am--two
livries, forty pound a year, malt-licker, washin, silk-stocking,
and wax candles--not countin wails, which is somethink pretty
considerable at OUR house, I can tell you.
I didn't stay long here, for a suckmstance happened which got me a
very different situation. A handsome young genlmn, who kep a
tilbry and a ridin horse at livry, wanted a tiger. I bid at once
for the place; and, being a neat tidy-looking lad, he took me.
Bago gave me a character, and he my first livry; proud enough I was
of it, as you may fancy.
My new master had some business in the city, for he went in every
morning at ten, got out of his tilbry at the Citty Road, and had it
waiting for him at six; when, if it was summer, he spanked round
into the Park, and drove one of the neatest turnouts there. Wery
proud I was in a gold-laced hat, a drab coat and a red weskit, to
sit by his side, when he drove. I already began to ogle the gals
in the carridges, and to feel that longing for fashionabl life
which I've had ever since. When he was at the oppera, or the play,
down I went to skittles, or to White Condick Gardens; and Mr.
Frederic Altamont's young man was somebody, I warrant: to be sure
there is very few man-servants at Pentonwille, the poppylation
being mostly gals of all work; and so, though only fourteen, I was
as much a man down there, as if I had been as old as Jerusalem.
But the most singular thing was, that my master, who was such a gay
chap, should live in such a hole. He had only a ground-floor in
John Street--a parlor and a bedroom. I slep over the way, and only
came in with his boots and brexfast of a morning.
The house he lodged in belonged to Mr. and Mrs. Shum. They were a
poor but proliffic couple, who had rented the place for many years;
and they and their family were squeezed in it pretty tight, I can
Shum said he had been a hofficer, and so he had. He had been a
sub-deputy assistant vice-commissary, or some such think; and, as
I heerd afterwards, had been obliged to leave on account of his
NERVOUSNESS. He was such a coward, the fact is, that he was
considered dangerous to the harmy, and sent home.
He had married a widow Buckmaster, who had been a Miss Slamcoe.
She was a Bristol gal; and her father being a bankrup in the
tallow-chandlering way, left, in course, a pretty little sum of
money. A thousand pound was settled on her; and she was as high
and mighty as if it had been a millium.
Buckmaster died, leaving nothink; nothink except four ugly
daughters by Miss Slamcoe: and her forty pound a year was rayther
a narrow income for one of her appytite and pretensions. In an
unlucky hour for Shum she met him. He was a widower with a little
daughter of three years old, a little house at Pentonwille, and a
little income about as big as her own. I believe she bullyd the
poor creature into marridge; and it was agreed that he should let
his ground-floor at John Street, and so add somethink to their
They married; and the widow Buckmaster was the gray mare, I can
tell you. She was always talking and blustering about her famly,
the celebrity of the Buckmasters, and the antickety of the
Slamcoes. They had a six-roomed house (not counting kitching and
sculry), and now twelve daughters in all; whizz.--4 Miss
Buckmasters: Miss Betsy, Miss Dosy, Miss Biddy, and Miss Winny;
1 Miss Shum, Mary by name, Shum's daughter, and seven others, who
shall be nameless. Mrs. Shum was a fat, red-haired woman, at least
a foot taller than S.; who was but a yard and a half high, pale-
faced, red-nosed, knock-kneed, bald-headed, his nose and shut-frill
all brown with snuff.
Before the house was a little garden, where the washin of the famly
was all ways hanging. There was so many of 'em that it was obliged
to be done by relays. There was six rails and a stocking on each,
and four small goosbry bushes, always covered with some bit of
linning or other. The hall was a regular puddle: wet dabs of
dishclouts flapped in your face; soapy smoking bits of flanning
went nigh to choke you; and while you were looking up to prevent
hanging yourself with the ropes which were strung across and about,
slap came the hedge of a pail against your shins, till one was like
to be drove mad with hagony. The great slattnly doddling girls was
always on the stairs, poking about with nasty flower-pots, a-
cooking something, or sprawling in the window-seats with greasy
curl-papers, reading greasy novels. An infernal pianna was
jingling from morning till night--two eldest Miss Buckmasters,
"Battle of Prag"--six youngest Miss Shums, "In my Cottage," till I
knew every note in the "Battle of Prag," and cussed the day when
"In my Cottage" was rote. The younger girls, too, were always
bouncing and thumping about the house, with torn pinnyfores, and
dogs-eard grammars, and large pieces of bread and treacle. I never
see such a house.
As for Mrs. Shum, she was such a fine lady, that she did nothink
but lay on the drawing-room sophy, read novels, drink, scold,
scream, and go into hystarrix. Little Shum kep reading an old
newspaper from weeks' end to weeks' end, when he was not engaged in
teaching the children, or goin for the beer, or cleanin the shoes:
for they kep no servant. This house in John Street was in short a
What could have brought Mr. Frederic Altamont to dwell in such a
place? The reason is hobvius: he adoared the fust Miss Shum.
And suttnly he did not show a bad taste; for though the other
daughters were as ugly as their hideous ma, Mary Shum was a pretty
little pink, modest creatur, with glossy black hair and tender blue
eyes, and a neck as white as plaster of Parish. She wore a dismal
old black gownd, which had grown too short for her, and too tight;
but it only served to show her pretty angles and feet, and bewchus
figger. Master, though he had looked rather low for the gal of his
art, had certainly looked in the right place. Never was one more
pretty or more hamiable. I gav her always the buttered toast left
from our brexfust, and a cup of tea or chocklate, as Altamont might
fancy: and the poor thing was glad enough of it, I can vouch; for
they had precious short commons up stairs, and she the least of
For it seemed as if which of the Shum famly should try to snub the
poor thing most. There was the four Buckmaster girls always at
her. It was, Mary, git the coal-skittle; Mary, run down to the
public-house for the beer; Mary, I intend to wear your clean
stockens out walking, or your new bonnet to church. Only her poor
father was kind to her; and he, poor old muff! his kindness was of
no use. Mary bore all the scolding like a hangel, as she was: no,
not if she had a pair of wings and a goold trumpet, could she have
been a greater hangel.
I never shall forgit one seen that took place. It was when Master
was in the city; and so, having nothink earthly to do, I happened
to be listening on the stairs. The old scolding was a-going on,
and the old tune of that hojus "Battle of Prag." Old Shum made
some remark; and Miss Buckmaster cried out, "Law, pa! what a fool
you are!" All the gals began laffin, and so did Mrs. Shum; all,
that is, excep Mary, who turned as red as flams, and going up to
Miss Betsy Buckmaster, give her two such wax on her great red ears
as made them tingle again.
Old Mrs. Shum screamed, and ran at her like a Bengal tiger. Her
great arms vent veeling about like a vinmill, as she cuffed and
thumped poor Mary for taking her pa's part. Mary Shum, who was
always a-crying before, didn't shed a tear now. "I will do it
again," she said, "if Betsy insults my father." New thumps, new
shreex; and the old horridan went on beatin the poor girl till she
was quite exosted, and fell down on the sophy, puffin like a
"For shame, Mary," began old Shum; "for shame, you naughty gal,
you! for hurting the feelings of your dear mamma, and beating your
"Why, it was because she called you a--"
"If she did, you pert miss," said Shum, looking mighty dignitified,
"I could correct her, and not you."
"You correct me, indeed!" said Miss Betsy, turning up her nose, if
possible, higher than before; "I should like to see you erect me!
Imperence!" and they all began laffin again.
By this time Mrs. S. had recovered from the effex of her exsize,
and she began to pour in HER wolly. Fust she called Mary names,
"Oh, why," screeched she, "why did I ever leave a genteel famly,
where I ad every ellygance and lucksry, to marry a creatur like
this? He is unfit to be called a man, he is unworthy to marry a
gentlewoman; and as for that hussy, I disown her. Thank heaven she
an't a Slamcoe; she is only fit to be a Shum!"
"That's true, mamma," said all the gals; for their mother had
taught them this pretty piece of manners, and they despised their
father heartily: indeed, I have always remarked that, in famlies
where the wife is internally talking about the merits of her
branch, the husband is invariably a spooney.
Well, when she was exosted again, down she fell on the sofy, at her
old trix--more screeching--more convulshuns: and she wouldn't stop,
this time, till Shum had got her half a pint of her old remedy,
from the "Blue Lion" over the way. She grew more easy as she
finished the gin; but Mary was sent out of the room, and told not
to come back agin all day.
"Miss Mary," says I,--for my heart yurned to the poor gal, as she
came sobbing and miserable down stairs: "Miss Mary," says I, "if I
might make so bold, here's master's room empty, and I know where
the cold bif and pickles is." "Oh, Charles!" said she, nodding her
head sadly, "I'm too retched to have any happytite." And she flung
herself on a chair, and began to cry fit to bust.
At this moment who should come in but my master. I had taken hold
of Miss Mary's hand, somehow, and do believe I should have kist it,
when, as I said, Haltamont made his appearance. "What's this?"
cries he, lookin at me as black as thunder, or as Mr. Phillips as
Hickit, in the new tragedy of MacBuff.
"It's only Miss Mary, sir," answered I.
"Get out, sir," says he, as fierce as posbil; and I felt somethink
(I think it was the tip of his to) touching me behind, and found
myself, nex minit, sprawling among the wet flannings and buckets
The people from up stairs came to see what was the matter, as I was
cussin and crying out. "It's only Charles, ma," screamed out Miss
"Where's Mary?" says Mrs. Shum, from the sofy.
"She's in Master's room, miss," said I.
"She's in the lodger's room, ma," cries Miss Shum, heckoing me.
"Very good; tell her to stay there till he comes back." And then
Miss Shum went bouncing up the stairs again, little knowing of
. . . . . .
I'd long before observed that my master had an anchoring after Mary
Shum; indeed, as I have said, it was purely for her sake that he
took and kep his lodgings at Pentonwille. Excep for the sake of
love, which is above being mersnary, fourteen shillings a wick was
a LITTLE too strong for two such rat-holes as he lived in. I do
blieve the famly had nothing else but their lodger to live on: they
brekfisted off his tea-leaves, they cut away pounds and pounds of
meat from his jints (he always dined at home), and his baker's bill
was at least enough for six. But that wasn't my business. I saw
him grin, sometimes, when I laid down the cold bif of a morning, to
see how little was left of yesterday's sirline; but he never said a
syllabub: for true love don't mind a pound of meat or so hextra.
At first, he was very kind and attentive to all the gals; Miss
Betsy, in partickler, grew mighty fond of him: they sat, for whole
evenings, playing cribbitch, he taking his pipe and glas, she her
tea and muffing; but as it was improper for her to come alone, she
brought one of her sisters, and this was genrally Mary,--for he
made a pint of asking her, too,--and one day, when one of the
others came instead, he told her, very quitely, that he hadn't
invited her; and Miss Buckmaster was too fond of muffings to try
this game on again: besides, she was jealous of her three grown
sisters, and considered Mary as only a child. Law bless us! how
she used to ogle him, and quot bits of pottry, and play "Meet Me by
Moonlike," on an old gitter: she reglar flung herself at his head:
but he wouldn't have it, bein better ockypied elsewhere.
One night, as genteel as possible, he brought home tickets for
"Ashley's," and proposed to take the two young ladies--Miss Betsy
and Miss Mary, in course. I recklect he called me aside that
afternoon, assuming a solamon and misterus hare, "Charles," said
he, "ARE YOU UP TO SNUFF?"
"Why sir," said I, "I'm genrally considered tolerably downy."
"Well," says he, "I'll give you half a suffering if you can manage
this bisness for me; I've chose a rainy night on purpus. When the
theatre is over, you must be waitin with two umbrellows; give me
one, and hold the other over Miss Buckmaster: and, hark ye, sir,
TURN TO THE RIGHT when you leave the theater, and say the coach is
ordered to stand a little way up the street, in order to get rid of
We went (in a fly hired by Mr. A.), and never shall I forgit
Cartliche's hacting on that memrable night. Talk of Kimble! talk
of Magreedy! Ashley's for my money, with Cartlitch in the
principal part. But this is nothink to the porpus. When the play
was over, I was at the door with the umbrellos. It was raining
cats and dogs, sure enough.
Mr. Altamont came out presently, Miss Mary under his arm, and Miss
Betsy following behind, rayther sulky. "This way, sir," cries I,
pushin forward; and I threw a great cloak over Miss Betsy, fit to
smother her. Mr. A. and Miss Mary skipped on and was out of sight
when Miss Betsy's cloak was settled, you may be sure.
"They're only gone to the fly, miss. It's a little way up the
street, away from the crowd of carridges." And off we turned TO
THE RIGHT, and no mistake.
After marchin a little through the plash and mud, "Has anybody seen
Coxy's fly?" cries I, with the most innocent haxent in the world.
"Cox's fly!" hollows out one chap. "Is it the vaggin you want?"
says another. "I see the blackin wan pass," giggles out another
gentlmn; and there was such a hinterchange of compliments as you
never heerd. I pass them over though, because some of 'em were not
"Law, miss," said I, "what shall I do? My master will never
forgive me; and I haven't a single sixpence to pay a coach." Miss
Betsy was just going to call one when I said that; but the coachman
wouldn't have it at that price, he said, and I knew very well that
SHE hadn't four or five shillings to pay for a wehicle. So, in the
midst of that tarin rain, at midnight, we had to walk four miles,
from Westminster Bridge to Pentonwille; and what was wuss, I DIDN'T
HAPPEN TO KNOW THE WAY. A very nice walk it was, and no mistake.
At about half-past two, we got safe to John Street. My master was
at the garden gate. Miss Mary flew into Miss Betsy's arms, while
master begun cussin and swearing at me for disobeying his orders,
and TURNING TO THE RIGHT INSTEAD OF TO THE LEFT! Law bless me! his
hacting of hanger was very near as natral and as terrybl as Mr.
Cartlich's in the play.
They had waited half an hour, he said, in the fly, in the little
street at the left of the theater; they had drove up and down in
the greatest fright possible; and at last came home, thinking it
was in vain to wait any more. They gave her 'ot rum-and-water and
roast oysters for supper, and this consoled her a little.
I hope nobody will cast an imputation on Miss Mary for HER share in
this adventer, for she was as honest a gal as ever lived, and I do
believe is hignorant to this day of our little strattygim. Besides,
all's fair in love; and, as my master could never get to see her
alone, on account of her infernal eleven sisters and ma, he took
this opportunity of expressin his attachment to her.
If he was in love with her before, you may be sure she paid it him
back again now. Ever after the night at Ashley's, they were as
tender as two tuttle-doves--which fully accounts for the axdent
what happened to me, in being kicked out of the room: and in course
I bore no mallis.
I don't know whether Miss Betsy still fancied that my master was in
love with her, but she loved muffings and tea, and kem down to his
parlor as much as ever.
Now comes the sing'lar part of my history.
But who was this genlmn with a fine name--Mr. Frederic Altamont? or
what was he? The most mysterus genlmn that ever I knew. Once I
said to him on a wery rainy day, "Sir, shall I bring the gig down
to your office?" and he gave me one of his black looks and one of
his loudest hoaths, and told me to mind my own bizziness, and
attend to my orders. Another day,--it was on the day when Miss
Mary slapped Miss Betsy's face,--Miss M., who adoared him, as I
have said already, kep on asking him what was his buth, parentidg,
and ediccation. "Dear Frederic," says she, "why this mistry about
yourself and your hactions? why hide from your little Mary"--they
were as tender as this, I can tell you--"your buth and your
I spose Mr. Frederic looked black, for I was ONLY listening, and he
said, in a voice hagitated by emotion, "Mary," said he, "if you
love me, ask me this no more: let it be sfishnt for you to know
that I am a honest man, and that a secret, what it would be misery
for you to larn, must hang over all my actions--that is from ten
o'clock till six."
They went on chaffin and talking in this melumcolly and mysterus
way, and I didn't lose a word of what they said; for them houses
in Pentonwille have only walls made of pasteboard, and you hear
rayther better outside the room than in. But, though he kep up his
secret, he swore to her his affektion this day pint blank. Nothing
should prevent him, he said, from leading her to the halter, from
makin her his adoarable wife. After this was a slight silence.
"Dearest Frederic," mummered out miss, speakin as if she was
chokin, "I am yours--yours for ever." And then silence agen, and
one or two smax, as if there was kissin going on. Here I thought
it best to give a rattle at the door-lock; for, as I live, there
was old Mrs. Shum a-walkin down the stairs!
It appears that one of the younger gals, a-looking out of the bed-
rum window, had seen my master come in, and coming down to tea half
an hour afterwards, said so in a cussary way. Old Mrs. Shum, who
was a dragon of vertyou, cam bustling down the stairs, panting and
frowning, as fat and as fierce as a old sow at feedin time.
"Where's the lodger, fellow?" says she to me.
I spoke loud enough to be heard down the street--"If you mean,
ma'am, my master, Mr. Frederic Altamont, esquire, he's just stept
in, and is puttin on clean shoes in his bedroom."
She said nothink in answer, but flumps past me, and opening the
parlor-door, sees master looking very queer, and Miss Mary a-
drooping down her head like a pale lily.
"Did you come into my famly," says she, "to corrupt my daughters,
and to destroy the hinnocence of that infamous gal? Did you come
here, sir, as a seducer, or only as a lodger? Speak, sir, speak!"--
and she folded her arms quite fierce, and looked like Mrs. Siddums
in the Tragic Mews.
"I came here, Mrs. Shum," said he, "because I loved your daughter,
or I never would have condescended to live in such a beggarly hole.
I have treated her in every respect like a genlmn, and she is as
innocent now, ma'm, as she was when she was born. If she'll marry
me, I am ready; if she'll leave you, she shall have a home where
she shall be neither bullyd nor starved: no hangry frumps of
sisters, no cross mother-in-law, only an affeckshnat husband, and
all the pure pleasures of Hyming."
Mary flung herself into his arms--"Dear, dear Frederic," says she,
"I'll never leave you."
"Miss," says Mrs. Shum, "you ain't a Slamcoe nor yet a Buckmaster,
thank God. You may marry this person if your pa thinks proper, and
he may insult me--brave me--trample on my feelinx in my own house--
and there's no-o-o-obody by to defend me."
I knew what she was going to be at: on came her histarrix agen, and
she began screechin and roaring like mad. Down comes of course the
eleven gals and old Shum. There was a pretty row. "Look here,
sir," says she, "at the conduck of your precious trull of a
daughter--alone with this man, kissin and dandlin, and Lawd knows
"What, he?" cries Miss Betsy--"he in love with Mary. Oh, the
wretch, the monster, the deceiver!"--and she falls down too,
screeching away as loud as her mamma; for the silly creature
fancied still that Altamont had a fondness for her.
"SILENCE THESE WOMEN!" shouts out Altamont, thundering loud. "I
love your daughter, Mr. Shum. I will take her without a penny, and
can afford to keep her. If you don't give her to me, she'll come
of her own will. Is that enough?--may I have her?"
"We'll talk of this matter, sir," says Mr. Shum, looking as high
and mighty as an alderman. "Gals, go up stairs with your dear
mamma."--And they all trooped up again, and so the skrimmage ended.
You may be sure that old Shum was not very sorry to get a husband
for his daughter Mary, for the old creatur loved her better than
all the pack which had been brought him or born to him by Mrs.
Buckmaster. But, strange to say, when he came to talk of
settlements and so forth, not a word would my master answer. He
said he made four hundred a year reglar--he wouldn't tell how--but
Mary, if she married him, must share all that he had, and ask no
questions; only this he would say, as he'd said before, that he was
a honest man.
They were married in a few days, and took a very genteel house at
Islington; but still my master went away to business, and nobody
knew where. Who could he be?
If ever a young kipple in the middlin classes began life with a
chance of happiness, it was Mr. and Mrs. Frederic Altamont. There
house at Cannon Row, Islington, was as comfortable as house could
be. Carpited from top to to; pore's rates small; furnitur elygant;
and three deomestix: of which I, in course, was one. My life
wasn't so easy as in Mr. A.'s bachelor days; but, what then? The
three W's is my maxum: plenty of work, plenty of wittles, and
plenty of wages. Altamont kep his gig no longer, but went to the
city in an omlibuster.
One would have thought, I say, that Mrs. A., with such an
effeckshnut husband, might have been as happy as her blessid
majisty. Nothing of the sort. For the fust six months it was all
very well; but then she grew gloomier and gloomier, though A. did
everythink in life to please her.
Old Shum used to come reglarly four times a wick to Cannon Row,
where he lunched, and dined, and teed, and supd. The pore little
man was a thought too fond of wine and spirits; and many and many's
the night that I've had to support him home. And you may be sure
that Miss Betsy did not now desert her sister: she was at our place
mornink, noon, and night; not much to my mayster's liking, though
he was too good-natured to wex his wife in trifles.
But Betsy never had forgotten the recollection of old days, and
hated Altamont like the foul feind. She put all kind of bad things
into the head of poor innocent missis; who, from being all gayety
and cheerfulness, grew to be quite melumcolly and pale, and
retchid, just as if she had been the most misrable woman in the
In three months more, a baby comes, in course, and with it old Mrs.
Shum, who stuck to Mrs.' side as close as a wampire, and made her
retchider and retchider. She used to bust into tears when Altamont
came home: she used to sigh and wheep over the pore child, and say,
"My child, my child, your father is false to me;" or, "your father
deceives me;" or "what will you do when your pore mother is no
more?" or such like sentimental stuff.
It all came from Mother Shum, and her old trix, as I soon found
out. The fact is, when there is a mistry of this kind in the
house, its a servant's DUTY to listen; and listen I did, one day
when Mrs. was cryin as usual, and fat Mrs. Shum a sittin consolin
her, as she called it: though, heaven knows, she only grew wuss and
wuss for the consolation.
Well, I listened; Mrs. Shum was a-rockin the baby, and missis cryin
"Pore dear innocint," says Mrs. S., heavin a great sigh, "you're
the child of a unknown father and a misrable mother."
"Don't speak ill of Frederic, mamma," says missis; "he is all
kindness to me."
"All kindness, indeed! yes, he gives you a fine house, and a fine
gownd, and a ride in a fly whenever you please; but WHERE DOES ALL
HIS MONEY COME FROM? Who is he--what is he? Who knows that he
mayn't be a murderer, or a housebreaker, or a utterer of forged
notes? How can he make his money honestly, when he won't say where
he gets it? Why does he leave you eight hours every blessid day,
and won't say where he goes to? Oh, Mary, Mary, you are the most
injured of women!"
And with this Mrs. Shum began sobbin; and Miss Betsy began yowling
like a cat in a gitter; and pore missis cried, too--tears is so
"Perhaps, mamma," wimpered out she, "Frederic is a shop-boy, and
don't like me to know that he is not a gentleman."
"A shopboy," says Betsy, "he a shopboy! O no, no, no! more likely
a wretched willain of a murderer, stabbin and robing all day, and
feedin you with the fruits of his ill-gotten games!"
More crying and screechin here took place, in which the baby
joined; and made a very pretty consort, I can tell you.
"He can't be a robber," cries missis; "he's too good, too kind, for
that: besides, murdering is done at night, and Frederic is always
home at eight."
"But he can be a forger," says Betsy, "a wicked, wicked FORGER.
Why does he go away every day? to forge notes, to be sure. Why
does he go to the city? to be near banks and places, and so do it
more at his convenience."
"But he brings home a sum of money every day--about thirty
shillings--sometimes fifty: and then he smiles, and says it's a
good day's work. This is not like a forger," said pore Mrs. A.
"I have it--I have it!" screams out Mrs. S. "The villain--the
sneaking, double-faced Jonas! he's married to somebody else he is,
and that's why he leaves you, the base biggymist!"
At this, Mrs. Altamont, struck all of a heap, fainted clean away.
A dreadful business it was--hystarrix; then hystarrix, in course,
from Mrs. Shum; bells ringin, child squalin, suvvants tearin up and
down stairs with hot water! If ever there is a noosance in the
world, it's a house where faintain is always goin on. I wouldn't
live in one,--no, not to be groom of the chambers, and git two
hundred a year.
It was eight o'clock in the evenin when this row took place; and
such a row it was, that nobody but me heard master's knock. He
came in, and heard the hooping, and screeching, and roaring. He
seemed very much frightened at first, and said, "What is it?"
"Mrs. Shum's here," says I, "and Mrs. in astarrix."
Altamont looked as black as thunder, and growled out a word which I
don't like to name,--let it suffice that it begins with a D and
ends with a NATION; and he tore up stairs like mad.
He bust open the bedroom door; missis lay quite pale and stony on
the sofy; the babby was screechin from the craddle; Miss Betsy was
sprawlin over missis; and Mrs. Shum half on the bed and half on the
ground: all howlin and squeelin, like so many dogs at the moond.
When A. came in, the mother and daughter stopped all of a sudding.
There had been one or two tiffs before between them, and they
feared him as if he had been a hogre.
"What's this infernal screeching and crying about?" says he. "Oh,
Mr. Altamont," cries the old woman, "you know too well; it's about
you that this darling child is misrabble!"
"And why about me, pray, madam?"
"Why, sir, dare you ask why? Because you deceive her, sir; because
you are a false, cowardly traitor, sir; because YOU HAVE A WIFE
ELSEWHERE, SIR!" And the old lady and Miss Betsy began to roar
again as loud as ever.
Altamont pawsed for a minnit, and then flung the door wide open;
nex he seized Miss Betsy as if his hand were a vice, and he world
her out of the room; then up he goes to Mrs. S. "Get up," says he,
thundering loud, "you lazy, trolloping, mischsef-making, lying old
fool! Get up, and get out of this house. You have been the cuss
and bain of my happyniss since you entered it. With your d----d
lies, and novvle rending, and histerrix, you have perwerted Mary,
and made her almost as mad as yourself."
"My child! my child!" shriex out Mrs. Shum, and clings round
missis. But Altamont ran between them, and griping the old lady by
her arm, dragged her to the door. "Follow your daughter, ma'm,"
says he, and down she went. "CHAWLS, SEE THOSE LADIES TO THE
DOOR," he hollows out, "and never let them pass it again." We
walked down together, and off they went: and master locked and
double-locked the bedroom door after him, intendin, of course, to
have a tator-tator (as they say) with his wife. You may be sure
that I followed up stairs again pretty quick, to hear the result of
As they say at St. Stevenses, it was rayther a stormy debate.
"Mary," says master, "you're no longer the merry greatful gal I
knew and loved at Pentonwill: there's some secret a pressin on you--
there's no smilin welcom for me now, as there used formly to be!
Your mother and sister-in-law have perwerted you, Mary: and that's
why I've drove them from this house, which they shall not re-enter
in my life."
"O, Frederic! it's YOU is the cause, and not I. Why do you have
any mistry from me? Where do you spend your days? Why did you
leave me, even on the day of your marridge, for eight hours, and
continue to do so every day?"
"Because," says he, "I makes my livelihood by it. I leave you,
and don't tell you HOW I make it: for it would make you none the
happier to know."
It was in this way the convysation ren on--more tears and questions
on my missises part, more sturmness and silence on my master's: it
ended for the first time since their marridge, in a reglar quarrel.
Wery difrent, I can tell you, from all the hammerous billing and
kewing which had proceeded their nupshuls.
Master went out, slamming the door in a fury; as well he might.
Says he, "If I can't have a comforable life, I can have a jolly
one;" and so he went off to the hed tavern, and came home that
evening beesly intawsicated. When high words begin in a family
drink generally follows on the genlman's side; and then, fearwell
to all conjubial happyniss! These two pipple, so fond and loving,
were now sirly, silent, and full of il wil. Master went out
earlier, and came home later; missis cried more, and looked even
paler than before.
Well, things went on in this uncomfortable way, master still in the
mopes, missis tempted by the deamons of jellosy and curosity; until
a singlar axident brought to light all the goings on of Mr.
It was the tenth of January; I recklect the day, for old Shum gev
me half a crownd (the fust and last of his money I ever see, by the
way): he was dining along with master, and they were making merry
Master said, as he was mixing his fifth tumler of punch and little
Shum his twelfth or so--master said, "I see you twice in the City
to-day, Mr. Shum."
"Well, that's curous!" says Shum. "I WAS in the City. To-day's
the day when the divvydins (God bless 'em) is paid; and me and Mrs.
S. went for our half-year's inkem. But we only got out of the
coach, crossed the street to the Bank, took our money, and got in
agen. How could you see me twice?"
Altamont stuttered and stammered and hemd, and hawd. "O!" says he,
"I was passing--passing as you went in and out." And he instantly
turned the conversation, and began talking about pollytix, or the
weather, or some such stuff.
"Yes, my dear," said my missis, "but how could you see papa TWICE?"
Master didn't answer, but talked pollytix more than ever. Still
she would continy on. "Where was you, my dear, when you saw pa?
What were you doing, my love, to see pa twice?" and so forth.
Master looked angrier and angrier, and his wife only pressed him
wuss and wuss.
This was, as I said, little Shum's twelfth tumler; and I knew
pritty well that he could git very little further; for, as reglar
as the thirteenth came, Shum was drunk. The thirteenth did come,
and its consquinzes. I was obliged to leed him home to John
Street, where I left him in the hangry arms of Mrs. Shum.
"How the d--," sayd he all the way, "how the d-dd--the deddy--
deddy--devil--could he have seen me TWICE?"
It was a sad slip on Altamont's part, for no sooner did he go out
the next morning than missis went out too. She tor down the
street, and never stopped till she came to her pa's house at
Pentonwill. She was clositid for an hour with her ma, and when she
left her she drove straight to the City. She walked before the
Bank, and behind the Bank, and round the Bank: she came home
disperryted, having learned nothink.
And it was now an extraordinary thing that from Shum's house for
the next ten days there was nothing but expyditions into the city.
Mrs. S., tho her dropsicle legs had never carred her half so fur
before, was eternally on the key veve, as the French say. If she
didn't go, Miss Betsy did, or misses did: they seemed to have an
attrackshun to the Bank, and went there as natral as an omlibus.
At last one day, old Mrs. Shum comes to our house--(she wasn't
admitted when master was there, but came still in his absints)--
and she wore a hair of tryumph, as she entered. "Mary," says she,
"where is the money your husbind brought to you yesterday?" My
master used always to give it to missis when he returned.
"The money, ma!" says Mary. "Why here!" And pulling out her puss,
she showed a sovrin, a good heap of silver, and an odd-looking
"THAT'S IT! that's it!" cried Mrs. S. "A Queene Anne's sixpence,
isn't it, dear--dated seventeen hundred and three?"
It was so sure enough: a Queen Ans sixpence of that very date.
"Now, my love," says she, "I have found him! Come with me to-
morrow, and you shall KNOW ALL!"
And now comes the end of my story.
. . . . . .
The ladies nex morning set out for the City, and I walked behind,
doing the genteel thing, with a nosegy and a goold stick. We
walked down the New Road--we walked down the City Road--we walked
to the Bank. We were crossing from that heddyfiz to the other side
of Cornhill, when all of a sudden missis shreeked, and fainted
I rushed forrard, and raised her to my arms: spiling thereby a new
weskit and a pair of crimson smalcloes. I rushed forrard. I say,
very nearly knocking down the old sweeper who was hobbling away as
fast as posibil. We took her to Birch's; we provided her with a
hackney-coach and every lucksury, and carried her home to Islington.
. . . . . .
That night master never came home. Nor the nex night, nor the nex.
On the fourth day an octioneer arrived; he took an infantry of the
furnitur, and placed a bill in the window.
At the end of the wick Altamont made his appearance. He was
haggard and pale; not so haggard, however, not so pale as his
He looked at her very tendrilly. I may say, it's from him that I
coppied MY look to Miss ----. He looked at her very tendrilly and
held out his arms. She gev a suffycating shreek, and rusht into
"Mary," says he, "you know all now. I have sold my place; I have
got three thousand pounds for it, and saved two more. I've sold my
house and furnitur, and that brings me another. We'll go abroad
and love each other, has formly."
And now you ask me, Who he was? I shudder to relate.--Mr. Haltamont
SWEP THE CROSSING FROM THE BANK TO CORNHILL!!
Of cors, I left his servis. I met him, few years after, at Badden-
Badden, where he and Mrs. A. were much respectid, and pass for
pipple of propaty.
THE AMOURS OF MR. DEUCEACE.
DIMOND CUT DIMOND.
The name of my nex master was, if posbil, still more ellygant and
youfonious than that of my fust. I now found myself boddy servant
to the Honrabble Halgernon Percy Deuceace, youngest and fifth son
of the Earl of Crabs.
Halgernon was a barrystir--that is, he lived in Pump Cort, Temple:
a wulgar naybrood, witch praps my readers don't no. Suffiz to say,
it's on the confines of the citty, and the choasen aboad of the
lawyers of this metrappolish.
When I say that Mr. Deuceace was a barrystir, I don't mean that
he went sesshums or surcoats (as they call 'em), but simply that
he kep chambers, lived in Pump Cort, and looked out for a
commitionarship, or a revisinship, or any other place that the Wig
guvvyment could give him. His father was a Wig pier (as the
landriss told me), and had been a Toary pier. The fack is, his
lordship was so poar, that he would be anythink or nothink, to get
provisions for his sons and an inkum for himself.
I phansy that he aloud Halgernon two hundred a year; and it would
have been a very comforable maintenants, only he knever paid him.
Owever, the young genlmn was a genlmn, and no mistake; he got his
allowents of nothing a year, and spent it in the most honrabble
and fashnabble manner. He kep a kab---he went to Holmax--and
Crockfud's--he moved in the most xquizzit suckles and trubbld the
law boox very little, I can tell you. Those fashnabble gents have
ways of getten money, witch comman pipple doan't understand.
Though he only had a therd floar in Pump Cort, he lived as if he
had the welth of Cresas. The tenpun notes floo abowt as common as
haypince--clarrit and shampang was at his house as vulgar as gin;
and verry glad I was, to be sure, to be a valley to a zion of the
Deuceace had, in his sittin-room, a large pictur on a sheet of
paper. The names of his family was wrote on it; it was wrote in
the shape of a tree, a-groin out of a man-in-armer's stomick, and
the names were on little plates among the bows. The pictur said
that the Deuceaces kem into England in the year 1066, along with
William Conqueruns. My master called it his podygree. I do bleev
it was because he had this pictur, and because he was the HONRABBLE
Deuceace, that he mannitched to live as he did. If he had been a
common man, you'd have said he was no better than a swinler. It's
only rank and buth that can warrant such singularities as my master
show'd. For it's no use disgysing it--the Honrabble Halgernon was
a GAMBLER. For a man of wulgar family, it's the wust trade that
can be--for a man of common feelinx of honesty, this profession is
quite imposbil; but for a real thoroughbread genlmn, it's the
esiest and most prophetable line he can take.
It may praps appear curious that such a fashnabble man should live
in the Temple; but it must be recklected, that it's not only
lawyers who live in what's called the Ins of Cort. Many
batchylers, who have nothink to do with lor, have here their
loginx; and many sham barrysters, who never put on a wig and gownd
twise in their lives, kip apartments in the Temple, instead of Bon
Street, Pickledilly, or other fashnabble places.
Frinstance, on our stairkis (so these houses are called), there was
8 sets of chamberses, and only 3 lawyers. These was bottom floar,
Screwson, Hewson, and Jewson, attorneys; fust floar, Mr. Sergeant
Flabber--opsite, Mr. Counslor Bruffy; and secknd pair, Mr.
Haggerstony, an Irish counslor, praktising at the Old Baly, and
lickwise what they call reporter to the Morning Post nyouspapper.
Opsite him was wrote
MR. RICHARD BLEWITT;
and on the thud floar, with my master, lived one Mr. Dawkins.
This young fellow was a new comer into the Temple, and unlucky it
was for him too--he'd better have never been born; for it's my firm
apinion that the Temple ruined him--that is, with the help of my
master and Mr. Dick Blewitt: as you shall hear.
Mr. Dawkins, as I was gave to understand by his young man, had just
left the Universary of Oxford, and had a pretty little fortn of his
own--six thousand pound, or so--in the stox. He was jest of age,
an orfin who had lost his father and mother; and having
distinkwished hisself at Collitch, where he gained seffral prices,
was come to town to push his fortn, and study the barryster's
Not bein of a very high fammly hisself--indeed, I've heard say his
father was a chismonger, or somethink of that lo sort--Dawkins was
glad to find his old Oxford frend, Mr. Blewitt, yonger son to rich
Squire Blewitt, of Listershire, and to take rooms so near him.
Now, tho' there was a considdrable intimacy between me and Mr.
Blewitt's gentleman, there was scarcely any betwixt our masters,--
mine being too much of the aristoxy to associate with one of Mr.
Blewitt's sort. Blewitt was what they call a bettin man; he went
reglar to Tattlesall's, kep a pony, wore a white hat, a blue
berd's-eye handkercher, and a cut-away coat. In his manners he was
the very contrary of my master, who was a slim, ellygant man as
ever I see--he had very white hands, rayther a sallow face, with
sharp dark ise, and small wiskus neatly trimmed and as black as
Warren's jet--he spoke very low and soft--he seemed to be watchin
the person with whom he was in convysation, and always flatterd
everybody. As for Blewitt, he was quite of another sort. He was
always swearin, singing, and slappin people on the back, as hearty
as posbill. He seemed a merry, careless, honest cretur, whom one
would trust with life and soul. So thought Dawkins, at least; who,
though a quiet young man, fond of his boox, novvles, Byron's poems,
foot-playing, and such like scientafic amusemints, grew hand in
glove with honest Dick Blewitt, and soon after with my master, the
Honrabble Halgernon. Poor Daw! he thought he was makin good
connexions and real frends--he had fallen in with a couple of the
most etrocious swinlers that ever lived.
Before Mr. Dawkins's arrivial in our house, Mr. Deuceace had barely
condysended to speak to Mr. Blewitt; it was only about a month
after that suckumstance that my master, all of a sudding, grew very
friendly with him. The reason was pretty clear,--Deuceace WANTED
HIM. Dawkins had not been an hour in master's company before he
knew that he had a pidgin to pluck.
Blewitt knew this too: and bein very fond of pidgin, intended to
keep this one entirely to himself. It was amusin to see the
Honrabble Halgernon manuvring to get this poor bird out of
Blewitt's clause, who thought he had it safe. In fact, he'd
brought Dawkins to these chambers for that very porpos, thinking to
have him under his eye, and strip him at leisure.
My master very soon found out what was Mr. Blewitt's game.
Gamblers know gamblers, if not by instink, at least by reputation;
and though Mr. Blewitt moved in a much lower speare than Mr.
Deuceace, they knew each other's dealins and caracters puffickly
"Charles you scoundrel," says Deuceace to me one day (he always
spoak in that kind way), "who is this person that has taken the
opsit chambers, and plays the flute so industrusly?"
"It's Mr. Dawkins, a rich young gentleman from Oxford, and a great
friend of Mr. Blewittses, sir," says I; "they seem to live in each
Master said nothink, but he GRIN'D--my eye, how he did grin. Not
the fowl find himself could snear more satannickly.
I knew what he meant:
Imprimish. A man who plays the floot is a simpleton.
Secknly. Mr. Blewitt is a raskle.
Thirdmo. When a raskle and a simpleton is always together, and
when the simpleton is RICH, one knows pretty well what will come of
I was but a lad in them days, but I knew what was what, as well as
my master; it's not gentlemen only that's up to snough. Law bless
us! there was four of us on this stairkes, four as nice young men
as you ever see: Mr. Bruffy's young man, Mr. Dawkinses, Mr.
Blewitt's, and me--and we knew what our masters was about as well
as thay did theirselfs. Frinstance, I can say this for MYSELF,
there wasn't a paper in Deuceace's desk or drawer, not a bill, a
note, or mimerandum, which I hadn't read as well as he: with
Blewitt's it was the same--me and his young man used to read 'em
all. There wasn't a bottle of wine that we didn't get a glass out
of, nor a pound of sugar that we didn't have some lumps of it. We
had keys to all the cubbards--we pipped into all the letters that
kem and went---we pored over all the bill-files--we'd the best
pickens out of the dinners, the livvers of the fowls, the forcemit
balls out of the soup, the egs from the sallit. As for the coals
and candles, we left them to the landrisses. You may call this
robry--nonsince--it's only our rights--a suvvant's purquizzits is
as sacred as the laws of Hengland.
Well, the long and short of it is this. Richard Blewitt, esquire,
was sityouated as follows: He'd an incum of three hundred a year
from his father. Out of this he had to pay one hundred and ninety
for money borrowed by him at collidge, seventy for chambers,
seventy more for his hoss, aty for his suvvant on bord wagis, and
about three hundred and fifty for a sepparat establishment in the
Regency Park; besides this, his pockit-money, say a hunderd, his
eatin, drinkin, and wine-marchant's bill, about two hunderd moar.
So that you see he laid by a pretty handsome sum at the end of the
My master was diffrent; and being a more fashnable man than Mr. B.,
in course he owed a deal more mony. There was fust:
Account contray, at Crockford's L3711 0 0
Bills of xchange and I. O. U.'s (but he
didn't pay these in most cases) 4963 0 0
21 tailors' bills, in all 1306 11 9
3 hossdealers' do 402 0 0
2 coachbuilder 506 0 0
Bills contracted at Cambridtch 2193 6 8
Sundries 987 10 0
L14069 8 5
I give this as a curosity--pipple doan't know how in many cases
fashnabble life is carried on; and to know even what a real gnlmn
OWES is somethink instructif and agreeable.
But to my tail. The very day after my master had made the
inquiries concerning Mr. Dawkins, witch I mentioned already, he met
Mr. Blewitt on the stairs; and byoutiffle it was to see how this
gnlmn, who had before been almost cut by my master, was now
received by him. One of the sweetest smiles I ever saw was now
vizzable on Mr. Deuceace's countenance. He held out his hand,
covered with a white kid glove, and said, in the most frenly tone
of vice posbill, "What! Mr. Blewitt? It is an age since we met.
What a shame that such near naybors should see each other so
Mr. Blewitt, who was standing at his door, in a pe-green dressing-
gown, smoakin a segar, and singing a hunting coarus, looked
surprised, flattered, and then suspicious.
"Why, yes," says he, "it is, Mr. Deuceace, a long time."
"Not, I think, since we dined at Sir George Hookey's. By-the-by,
what an evening that was--hay, Mr. Blewitt? What wine! what
capital songs! I recollect your 'May-day in the morning'--cuss me,
the best comick song I ever heard. I was speaking to the Duke of
Doncaster about it only yesterday. You know the duke, I think?"
Mr. Blewitt said, quite surly, "No, I don't."
"Not know him!" cries master; "why, hang it, Blewitt! he knows YOU;
as every sporting man in England does, I should think. Why, man,
your good things are in everybody's mouth at Newmarket."
And so master went on chaffin Mr. Blewitt. That genlmn at fust
answered him quite short and angry: but, after a little more
flummery, he grew as pleased as posbill, took in all Deuceace's
flatry, and bleeved all his lies. At last the door shut, and they
both went into Mr. Blewitt's chambers together.
Of course I can't say what past there; but in an hour master kem up
to his own room as yaller as mustard, and smellin sadly of backo
smoke. I never see any genmln more sick than he was; HE'D BEEN
SMOAKIN SEAGARS along with Blewitt. I said nothink, in course, tho
I'd often heard him xpress his horrow of backo, and knew very well
he would as soon swallow pizon as smoke. But he wasn't a chap to
do a thing without a reason: if he'd been smoakin, I warrant he had
smoked to some porpus.
I didn't hear the convysation betwean 'em; but Mr. Blewitt's man
did: it was,--"Well, Mr. Blewitt, what capital seagars! Have you
one for a friend to smoak?" (The old fox, it wasn't only the
SEAGARS he was a-smoakin!) "Walk in," says Mr. Blewitt; and they
began a chaffin together; master very ankshous about the young
gintleman who had come to live in our chambers, Mr. Dawkins, and
always coming back to that subject,--saying that people on the same
stairkis ot to be frenly; how glad he'd be, for his part, to know
Mr. Dick Blewitt, and ANY FRIEND OF HIS, and so on. Mr. Dick,
howsever, seamed quite aware of the trap laid for him. "I really
don't know this Dawkins," says he: he's a chismonger's son, I hear;
and tho I've exchanged visits with him, I doan't intend to
continyou the acquaintance,--not wishin to assoshate with that kind
of pipple." So they went on, master fishin, and Mr. Blewitt not
wishin to take the hook at no price.
"Confound the vulgar thief!" muttard my master, as he was laying on
his sophy, after being so very ill; "I've poisoned myself with his
infernal tobacco, and he has foiled me. The cursed swindling boor!
he thinks he'll ruin this poor Cheese-monger, does he? I'll step
in, and WARN him."
I thought I should bust a-laffin, when he talked in this style. I
knew very well what his "warning" meant,--lockin the stable-door
but stealin the hoss fust.
Next day, his strattygam for becoming acquainted with Mr. Dawkins
we exicuted; and very pritty it was.
Besides potry and the flute, Mr. Dawkins, I must tell you, had some
other parshallities--wiz., he was very fond of good eatin and
drinkin. After doddling over his music and boox all day, this
young genlmn used to sally out of evenings, dine sumptiously at a
tavern, drinkin all sorts of wine along with his friend Mr.
Blewitt. He was a quiet young fellow enough at fust; but it was
Mr. B. who (for his own porpuses, no doubt,) had got him into this
kind of life. Well, I needn't say that he who eats a fine dinner,
and drinks too much overnight, wants a bottle of soda-water, and a
gril, praps, in the morning. Such was Mr. Dawkinses case; and
reglar almost as twelve o'clock came, the waiter from "Dix Coffy-
House" was to be seen on our stairkis, bringing up Mr. D.'s hot
No man would have thought there was anythink in such a trifling
cirkumstance; master did, though, and pounced upon it like a cock
on a barlycorn.
He sent me out to Mr. Morell's in Pickledilly, for wot's called a
Strasbug-pie--in French, a "patty defau graw." He takes a card,
and nails it on the outside case (patty defaw graws come generally
in a round wooden box, like a drumb); and what do you think he
writes on it? why, as follos:--"For the Honorable Algernon Percy
Deuceace, &c. &c. &c. With Prince Talleyrand's compliments."
Prince Tallyram's complimints, indeed! I laff when I think of it,
still, the old surpint! He WAS a surpint, that Deuceace, and no
Well, by a most extrornary piece of ill-luck, the nex day
punctially as Mr. Dawkinses brexfas was coming UP the stairs, Mr.
Halgernon Percy Deuceace was going DOWN. He was as gay as a lark,
humming an Oppra tune, and twizzting round his head his hevy gold-
headed cane. Down he went very fast, and by a most unlucky axdent
struck his cane against the waiter's tray, and away went Mr.
Dawkinses gril, kayann, kitchup, soda-water and all! I can't think
how my master should have choas such an exact time; to be sure, his
windo looked upon the court, and he could see every one who came
into our door.
As soon as the axdent had took place, master was in such a rage as,
to be sure, no man ever was in befor; he swoar at the waiter in the
most dreddfle way; he threatened him with his stick, and it was
only when he see that the waiter was rayther a bigger man than
hisself that he was in the least pazzyfied. He returned to his own
chambres; and John, the waiter, went off for more gril to Dixes
"This is a most unlucky axdent, to be sure, Charles," says master
to me, after a few minits paws, during witch he had been and wrote
a note, put it into an anvelope, and sealed it with his big seal of
arms. "But stay--a thought strikes me--take this note to Mr.
Dawkins, and that pye you brought yesterday; and hearkye, you
scoundrel, if you say where you got it I will break every bone in
These kind of promises were among the few which I knew him to keep:
and as I loved boath my skinn and my boans, I carried the noat, and
of cors said nothink. Waiting in Mr. Dawkinses chambus for a few
minnits, I returned to my master with an anser. I may as well give
both of these documence, of which I happen to have taken coppies:
THE HON. A. P. DEUCEACE TO T. S. DAWKINS, ESQ.
"Mr. DEUCEACE presents his compliments to Mr. Dawkins, and begs at
the same time to offer his most sincere apologies and regrets for
the accident which has just taken place.
"May Mr. Deuceace be allowed to take a neighbor's privilege, and to
remedy the evil he has occasioned to the best of his power if Mr.
Dawkins will do him the favor to partake of the contents of the
accompanying case (from Strasbourg direct, and the gift of a
friend, on whose taste as a gourmand Mr. Dawkins may rely), perhaps
he will find that it is not a bad substitute for the plat which Mr.
Deuceace's awkwardness destroyed.
"It will also, Mr. Deuceace is sure, be no small gratification to
the original donor of the 'pate', when he learns that it has fallen
into the hands of so celebrated a bon vivant as Mr. Dawkins.
"T. S. DAWKINS, Esq., &c. &c. &c."
FROM T. S. DAWKINS, ESQ., TO THE HON. A. P. DEUCEACE.
"MR. THOMAS SMITH DAWKINS presents his grateful compliments to the
Hon. Mr. Deuceace, and accepts with the greatest pleasure Mr.
Deuceace's generous proffer.
"It would be one of the HAPPIEST MOMENTS of Mr. Smith Dawkins's
life, if the Hon. Mr. Deuceace would EXTEND HIS GENEROSITY still
further, and condescend to partake of the repast which his
MUNIFICENT POLITENESS has furnished.
Many and many a time, I say, have I grin'd over these letters,
which I had wrote from the original by Mr. Bruffy's copyin clark.
Deuceace's flam about Prince Tallyram was puffickly successful. I
saw young Dawkins blush with delite as he red the note; he toar up
for or five sheets before he composed the answer to it, which was
as you red abuff, and roat in a hand quite trembling with pleasyer.
If you could but have seen the look of triumph in Deuceace's wicked
black eyes, when he read the noat! I never see a deamin yet, but I
can phansy 1, a holding a writhing soal on his pitchfrock, and
smilin like Deuceace. He dressed himself in his very best clothes,
and in he went, after sending me over to say that he would except
with pleasyour Mr. Dawkins's invite.
The pie was cut up, and a most frenly conversation begun betwixt
the two genlmin. Deuceace was quite captivating. He spoke to Mr.
Dawkins in the most respeckful and flatrin manner,--agread in every
think he said,--prazed his taste, his furniter, his coat, his
classick nolledge, and his playin on the floot; you'd have thought,
to hear him, that such a polygon of exlens as Dawkins did not
breath,--that such a modist, sinsear, honrabble genlmn as Deuceace
was to be seen nowhere xcept in Pump Cort. Poor Daw was complitly
taken in. My master said he'd introduce him to the Duke of
Doncaster, and heaven knows how many nobs more, till Dawkins was
quite intawsicated with pleasyour. I know as a fac (and it pretty
well shows the young genlmn's carryter), that he went that very day
and ordered 2 new coats, on porpos to be introjuiced to the lords
But the best joak of all was at last. Singin, swagrin, and
swarink--up stares came Mr. Dick Blewitt. He flung opn Mr.
Dawkins's door, shouting out, "Daw my old buck, how are you?" when,
all of a sudden, he sees Mr. Deuceace: his jor dropt, he turned
chocky white, and then burnin red, and looked as if a stror would
knock him down. "My dear Mr. Blewitt," says my master, smilin and
offring his hand, "how glad I am to see you. Mr. Dawkins and I
were just talking about your pony! Pray sit down."
Blewitt did; and now was the question, who should sit the other
out; but law bless you! Mr. Blewitt was no match for my master: all
the time he was fidgetty, silent, and sulky; on the contry, master
was charmin. I never herd such a flo of conversatin, or so many
wittacisms as he uttered. At last, completely beat, Mr. Blewitt
took his leaf; that instant master followed him; and passin his arm
through that of Mr. Dick, led him into our chambers, and began
talkin to him in the most affabl and affeckshnat manner.
But Dick was too angry to listen; at last, when master was telling
him some long story about the Duke of Doncaster, Blewitt burst out--
A plague on the Duke of Doncaster! Come, come, Mr. Deuceace, don't
you be running your rigs upon me; I ain't the man to be bamboozl'd
by long-winded stories about dukes and duchesses. You think I
don't know you; every man knows you and your line of country. Yes,
you're after young Dawkins there, and think to pluck him; but you
shan't,--no, by ---- you shan't." (The reader must recklect that
the oaths which interspussed Mr. B.'s convysation I have left out.)
Well, after he'd fired a wolley of 'em, Mr. Deuceace spoke as cool
"Hark ye, Blewitt. I know you to be one of the most infernal
thieves and scoundrels unhung. If you attempt to hector with me, I
will cane you; if you want more, I'll shoot you; if you meddle
between me and Dawkins, I will do both. I know your whole life,
you miserable swindler and coward. I know you have already won two
hundred pounds of this lad, and want all. I will have half, or you
never shall have a penny." It's quite true that master knew
things; but how was the wonder.
I couldn't see Mr. B.'s face during this dialogue, bein on the
wrong side of the door; but there was a considdrable paws after
thuse complymints had passed between the two genlmn,--one walkin
quickly up and down the room--tother, angry and stupid, sittin
down, and stampin with his foot.
"Now listen to this, Mr. Blewitt," continues master at last. "If
you're quiet, you shall have half this fellow's money: but venture
to win a shilling from him in my absence, or without my consent,
and you do it at your peril."
"Well, well, Mr. Deuceace," cries Dick, "it's very hard, and I must
say, not fair: the game was of my startin, and you've no right to
interfere with my friend."
"Mr. Blewitt, you are a fool! You professed yesterday not to know
this man, and I was obliged to find him out for myself. I should
like to know by what law of honor I am bound to give him up to
It was charmin to hear this pair of raskles talkin about HONOR. I
declare I could have found it in my heart to warn young Dawkins of
the precious way in which these chaps were going to serve him. But
if THEY didn't know what honor was, I did; and never, never did I
tell tails about my masters when in their sarvice--OUT, in cors,
the hobligation is no longer binding.
Well, the nex day there was a gran dinner at our chambers. White
soop, turbit, and lobstir sos; saddil of Scoch muttn, grous, and
M'Arony; wines, shampang, hock, maderia, a bottle of poart, and
ever so many of clarrit. The compny presint was three; wiz., the
Honrabble A. P. Deuceace, R. Blewitt, and Mr. Dawkins, Exquires.
My i, how we genlmn in the kitchin did enjy it. Mr. Blewittes man
eat so much grous (when it was brot out of the parlor), that I
reely thought he would be sik; Mr. Dawkinses genlmn (who was only
abowt 13 years of age) grew so il with M'Arony and plumb-puddn, as
to be obleeged to take sefral of Mr. D's. pils, which 1/2 kild him.
But this is all promiscuous: I an't talkin of the survants now, but
Would you bleeve it? After dinner and praps 8 bottles of wine
between the 3, the genlm sat down to ecarty. It's a game where
only 2 plays, and where, in coarse, when there's only 3, one looks
Fust, they playd crown pints, and a pound the bett. At this game
they were wonderful equill; and about supper-time (when grilled am,
more shampang, devld biskits, and other things, was brot in) the
play stood thus: Mr. Dawkins had won 2 pounds; Mr. Blewitt 30
shillings; the Honrabble Mr. Deuceace having lost 3L. l0s. After
the devvle and the shampang the play was a little higher. Now it
was pound pints, and five pound the bet. I thought, to be sure,
after hearing the complymints between Blewitt and master in the
morning, that now poor Dawkins's time was come.
Not so: Dawkins won always, Mr. B. betting on his play, and giving
him the very best of advice. At the end of the evening (which was
abowt five o'clock the nex morning) they stopt. Master was
counting up the skore on a card.
"Blewitt," says he, "I've been unlucky. I owe you, let me see--
yes, five-and-forty pounds?"
"Five-and-forty," says Blewitt, "and no mistake!"
"I will give you a cheque," says the honrabble genlmn.
"Oh! don't mention it, my dear sir!" But master got a grate sheet
of paper, and drew him a check on Messeers. Pump, Algit and Co.,
"Now," says master, "I've got to settle with you, my dear Mr.
Dawkins. If you had backd your luck, I should have owed you a very
handsome sum of money. Voyons, thirteen points at a pound--it is
easy to calculate;" and drawin out his puss, he clinked over the
table 13 goolden suverings, which shon till they made my eyes wink.
So did pore Dawkinses, as he put out his hand, all trembling, and
drew them in.
"Let me say," added master, "let me say (and I've had some little
experience), that you are the very best ecarte player with whom I
ever sat down."
Dawkinses eyes glissened as he put the money up, and said, "Law,
Deuceace, you flatter me."
FLATTER him! I should think he did. It was the very think which
"But mind you, Dawkins," continyoud he, "I must have my revenge;
for I'm ruined--positively ruined by your luck."
"Well, well," says Mr. Thomas Smith Dawkins, as pleased as if he
had gained a millium, "shall it be to-morrow? Blewitt, what say
Mr. Blewitt agreed, in course. My master, after a little
demurring, consented too. "We'll meet," says he, "at your
chambers. But mind, my dear fello, not too much wine: I can't
stand it at any time, especially when I have to play ecarte with
Pore Dawkins left our rooms as happy as a prins. "Here, Charles,"
says he, and flung me a sovring. Pore fellow! pore fellow! I knew
what was a-comin!
But the best of it was, that these 13 sovrings which Dawkins won,
MASTER HAD BORROWED THEM FROM MR. BLEWITT! I brought 'em, with 7
more, from that young genlmn's chambers that very morning: for,
since his interview with master, Blewitt had nothing to refuse him.
Well, shall I continue the tail? If Mr. Dawkins had been the least
bit wiser, it would have taken him six months befoar he lost his
money; as it was, he was such a confunded ninny, that it took him a
very short time to part with it.
Nex day (it was Thursday, and master's acquaintance with Mr.
Dawkins had only commenced on Tuesday), Mr. Dawkins, as I said, gev
his party,--dinner at 7. Mr. Blewitt and the two Mr. D.'s as
befoar. Play begins at 11. This time I knew the bisness was
pretty serious, for we suvvants was packed off to bed at 2 o'clock.
On Friday, I went to chambers--no master--he kem in for 5 minutes
at about 12, made a little toilit, ordered more devvles and soda-
water, and back again he went to Mr. Dawkins's.
They had dinner there at 7 again, but nobody seamed to eat, for all
the vittles came out to us genlmn: they had in more wine though,
and must have drunk at least two dozen in the 36 hours.
At ten o'clock, however, on Friday night, back my master came to
his chambers. I saw him as I never saw him before, namly reglar
drunk. He staggered about the room, he danced, he hickipd, he
swoar, he flung me a heap of silver, and, finely, he sunk down
exosted on his bed; I pullin off his boots and close, and making
When I had removed his garmints, I did what it's the duty of every
servant to do--I emtied his pockits, and looked at his pockit-book
and all his letters: a number of axdents have been prevented that
I found there, among a heap of things, the following pretty
I. O. U.
THOMAS SMITH DAWKINS.
Friday, 16th January.
There was another bit of paper of the same kind--"I. 0. U. four
hundred pounds: Richard Blewitt:" but this, in corse, ment nothink.
. . . . . .
Nex mornin, at nine, master was up, and as sober as a judg. He
drest, and was off to Mr. Dawkins. At ten, he ordered a cab, and
the two gentlmn went together.
"Where shall he drive, sir?" says I.
"Oh, tell him to drive to THE BANK."
Pore Dawkins! his eyes red with remors and sleepliss drunkenniss,
gave a shudder and a sob, as he sunk back in the wehicle; and they
That day he sold out every hapny he was worth, xcept five hundred
. . . . . .
Abowt 12 master had returned, and Mr. Dick Blewitt came stridin up
the stairs with a sollum and important hair.
"Is your master at home?" says he.
"Yes, sir," says I; and in he walks. I, in coars, with my ear to
the keyhole, listning with all my mite.
"Well," says Blewitt, "we maid a pretty good night of it, Mr.
Deuceace. Yu've settled, I see, with Dawkins."
"Settled!" says master. "Oh, yes--yes--I've settled with him."
"Four thousand seven hundred, I think?"
"That makes my share--let me see--two thousand three hundred and
fifty; which I'll thank you to fork out."
"Upon my word--why--Mr. Blewitt," says master, "I don't really
understand what you mean."
"YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT I MEAN!" says Blewitt, in an axent such as I
never before heard. "You don't know what I mean! Did you not
promise me that we were to go shares? Didn't I lend you twenty
sovereigns the other night to pay our losings to Dawkins? Didn't
you swear, on your honor as a gentleman, to give me half of all
that might be won in this affair?"
"Agreed, sir," says Deuceace; "agreed."
"Well, sir, and now what have you to say?"
"Why, THAT I DON'T INTEND TO KEEP MY PROMISE! You infernal fool
and ninny! do you suppose I was laboring for YOU? Do you fancy I
was going to the expense of giving a dinner to that jackass yonder,
that you should profit by it? Get away, sir! Leave the room, sir!
Or, stop--here--I will give you four hundred pounds--your own note
of hand, sir, for that sum, if you will consent to forget all that
has passed between us, and that you have never known Mr. Algernon
I've seen pipple angery before now, but never any like Blewitt. He
stormed, groaned, belloed, swoar! At last, he fairly began
blubbring; now cussing and nashing his teeth, now praying dear Mr.
Deuceace to grant him mercy.
At last, master flung open the door (heaven bless us! it's well I
didn't tumble hed over eels into the room!), and said, "Charles,
show the gentleman down stairs!" My master looked at him quite
steddy. Blewitt slunk down, as misrabble as any man I ever see.
As for Dawkins, heaven knows where he was!
. . . . . .
"Charles," says my master to me, about an hour afterwards, "I'm
going to Paris; you may come, too, if you please."
It was a singular proof of my master's modesty, that though he had
won this andsome sum of Mr. Dawkins, and was inclined to be as
extravygant and osntatious as any man I ever seed, yet, when he
determined on going to Paris, he didn't let a single frend know of
all them winnings of his; didn't acquaint my Lord Crabs his father,
that he was about to leave his natiff shoars--neigh--didn't even so
much as call together his tradesmin, and pay off their little bills
befor his departure.
On the contry, "Chawles," said he to me, "stick a piece of paper on
my door," which is the way that lawyers do, "and write 'Back at
seven' upon it." Back at seven I wrote, and stuck it on our outer
oak. And so mistearus was Deuceace about his continental tour (to
all except me), that when the landriss brought him her account for
the last month (amountain, at the very least, to 2L. 10s.), master
told her to leave it till Monday morning, when it should be
properly settled. It's extrodny how ickonomical a man becomes,
when he's got five thousand lbs. in his pockit.
Back at 7 indeed! At 7 we were a-roalin on the Dover Road, in the
Reglator Coach--master inside, me out. A strange company of people
there was, too, in that wehicle,--3 sailors; an Italyin with his
music-box and munky; a missionary, going to convert the heathens in
France; 2 oppra girls (they call 'em figure-aunts), and the figure-
aunts' mothers inside; 4 Frenchmin, with gingybred caps and
mustashes, singing, chattering, and jesticklating in the most
vonderful vay. Such compliments as passed between them and the
figure-aunts! such a munshin of biskits and sippin of brandy! such
"O mong Jews," and "O sacrrres," and "kill fay frwaws!" I didn't
understand their languidge at that time, so of course can't
igsplain much of their conwersation; but it pleased me, nevertheless,
for now I felt that I was reely going into foring parts: which, ever
sins I had had any edication at all, was always my fondest wish.
Heavin bless us! thought I, if these are specimeens of all
Frenchmen, what a set they must be. The pore Italyin's monky,
sittin mopin and meluncolly on his box, was not half so ugly, and
seamed quite as reasonabble.
Well, we arrived at Dover--"Ship Hotel" weal cutlets half a ginny,
glas of ale a shilling, glas of neagush, half a crownd, a
hapnyworth of wax-lites four shillings, and so on. But master paid
without grumbling; as long as it was for himself he never minded
the expens: and nex day we embarked in the packit for Balong sir-
mare--which means in French, the town of Balong sityouated on the
sea. I who had heard of foring wonders, expected this to be the
fust and greatest: phansy, then, my disapintment, when we got
there, to find this Balong, not situated on the sea, but on the
But oh! the gettin there was the bisniss. How I did wish for Pump
Court agin, as we were tawsing abowt in the Channel! Gentle
reader, av you ever been on the otion?--"The sea, the sea, the open
sea!" as Barry Cromwell says. As soon as we entered our little
wessel, and I'd looked to master's luggitch and mine (mine was rapt
up in a very small hankercher), as soon, I say, as we entered our
little wessel, as soon as I saw the waives, black and frothy, like
fresh drawn porter, a-dashin against the ribs of our galliant bark,
the keal like a wedge, splittin the billoes in two, the sales a-
flaffin in the hair, the standard of Hengland floating at the mask-
head, the steward a-getting ready the basins and things, the
capting proudly tredding the deck and giving orders to the salers,
the white rox of Albany and the bathin-masheens disappearing in the
distans--then, then I felt, for the first time, the mite, the
madgisty of existence. Yellowplush my boy," said I, in a dialogue
with myself, "your life is now about to commens--your carear, as a
man, dates from your entrans on board this packit. Be wise, be
manly, be cautious, forgit the follies of your youth. You are no
longer a boy now, but a FOOTMAN. Throw down your tops, your
marbles, your boyish games--throw off your childish habbits with
your inky clerk's jackit--throw up your--"
. . . . . .
Here, I recklect, I was obleeged to stopp. A fealin, in the fust
place singlar, in the next place painful, and at last compleatly
overpowering, had come upon me while I was making the abuff speach,
and now I found myself in a sityouation which Dellixy for Bids me
to describe. Suffis to say, that now I dixcovered what basins was
made for--that for many, many hours, I lay in a hagony of exostion,
dead to all intense and porpuses, the rain pattering in my face,
the salers tramplink over my body--the panes of purgatory going on
inside. When we'd been about four hours in this sityouation (it
seam'd to me four ears), the steward comes to that part of the deck
where we servants were all huddled up together, and calls out
"Well," says I, gurgling out a faint "yes, what's the matter?"
"Your master's wery ill," says he, with a grin.
"Master be hanged!" says I, turning round, more misrable than ever.
I woodn't have moved that day for twenty thousand masters--no, not
for the Empror of Russia or the Pop of Room.
Well, to cut this sad subjik short, many and many a voyitch have I
sins had upon what Shakspur calls the "wasty dip," but never such a
retched one as that from Dover to Balong, in the year Anna Domino
1818. Steemers were scarce in those days; and our journey was made
in a smack. At last, when I was in a stage of despare and
exostion, as reely to phansy myself at Death's doar, we got to the
end of our journey. Late in the evening we hailed the Gaelic
shoars, and hankered in the arbor of Balong sir-mare.
It was the entrans of Parrowdice to me and master: and as we
entered the calm water, and saw the comfrabble lights gleaming in
the houses, and felt the roal of the vessel degreasing, never was
two mortials gladder, I warrant, than we were. At length our
capting drew up at the key, and our journey was down. But such a
bustle and clatter, such jabbering, such shrieking and swaring,
such wollies of oafs and axicrations as saluted us on landing, I
never knew! We were boarded, in the fust place, by custom-house
officers in cock-hats, who seased our luggitch, and called for our
passpots: then a crowd of inn-waiters came, tumbling and screaming
on deck--"Dis way, sare," cries one; "Hotel Meurice," says another;
"Hotel de Bang," screeches another chap--the tower of Babyle was
nothink to it. The fust thing that struck me on landing was a big
fellow with ear-rings, who very nigh knock me down, in wrenching
master's carpet-bag out of my hand, as I was carrying it to the
hotell. But we got to it safe at last; and, for the fust time in
my life, I slep in a foring country.
I shan't describe this town of Balong, which, as it has been
visited by not less (on an avaridg) than two milliums of English
since I fust saw it twenty years ago, is tolrabbly well known
already. It's a dingy melumcolly place, to my mind; the only thing
moving in the streets is the gutter which runs down 'em. As for
wooden shoes, I saw few of 'em; and for frogs, upon my honor I
never see a single Frenchman swallow one, which I had been led to
beleave was their reg'lar, though beastly, custom. One thing which
amazed me was the singlar name which they give to this town of
Balong. It's divided, as every boddy knows, into an upper town
(sitouate on a mounting, and surrounded by a wall, or bullyvar) and
a lower town, which is on the level of the sea. Well, will it be
believed that they call the upper town the Hot Veal, and the other
the Base Veal, which is on the contry, genrally good in France,
though the beaf, it must be confest, is excrabble.
It was in the Base Veal that Deuceace took his lodgian, at the
Hotel de Bang, in a very crooked street called the Rue del Ascew;
and if he'd been the Archbishop of Devonshire, or the Duke of
Canterbury, he could not have given himself greater hairs, I can
tell you. Nothink was too fine for us now; we had a sweet of rooms
on the first floor, which belonged to the prime minister of France
(at least the landlord said they were the premier's); and the Hon.
Algernon Percy Deuceace, who had not paid his landriss, and came to
Dover in a coach, seamed now to think that goold was too vulgar for
him, and a carridge and six would break down with a man of his
weight. Shampang flew about like ginger-pop, besides bordo,
clarit, burgundy, burgong, and other wines, and all the delixes of
the Balong kitchins. We stopped a fortnit at this dull place, and
did nothing from morning till night excep walk on the bench, and
watch the ships going in and out of arber, with one of them long,
sliding opra-glasses, which they call, I don't know why, tallow-
scoops. Our amusements for the fortnit we stopped here were boath
numerous and daliteful; nothink, in fact, could be more pickong, as
they say. In the morning before breakfast we boath walked on the
Peer; master in a blue mareen jackit, and me in a slap-up new
livry; both provided with long sliding opra-glasses, called as I
said (I don't know Y, but I suppose it's a scientafick term)
tallow-scoops. With these we igsamined, very attentively, the
otion, the sea-weed, the pebbles, the dead cats, the fishwimmin,
and the waives (like little children playing at leap-frog), which
came tumblin over 1 another on to the shoar. It seemed to me as if
they were scrambling to get there, as well they might, being sick
of the sea, and anxious for the blessid, peaceable terry firmy.
After brexfast, down we went again (that is, master on his beat,
and me on mine,--for my place in this foring town was a complete
shinycure), and putting our tally-scoops again in our eyes, we
egsamined a little more the otion, pebbils, dead cats, and so on;
and this lasted till dinner, and dinner till bedtime, and bedtime
lasted till nex day, when came brexfast, and dinner, and tally-
scooping, as before. This is the way with all people of this town,
of which, as I've heard say, there is ten thousand happy English,
who lead this plesnt life from year's end to year's end.
Besides this, there's billiards and gambling for the gentlemen, a
little dancing for the gals, and scandle for the dowygers. In none
of these amusements did we partake. We were a LITTLE too good to
play crown pints at cards, and never get paid when we won; or to go
dangling after the portionless gals, or amuse ourselves with slops
and penny-wist along with the old ladies. No, no; my master was a
man of fortn now, and behayved himself as sich. If ever he
condysended to go into the public room of the Hotel de Bang--the
French (doubtless for reasons best known to themselves) call this a
sallymanjy--he swoar more and lowder than any one there; he
abyoused the waiters, the wittles, the wines. With his glas in his
i, he staired at every body. He took always the place before the
fire. He talked about "my carridge," "my currier," "my servant;"
and he did wright. I've always found through life, that if you
wish to be respected by English people, you must be insalent to
them, especially if you are a sprig of nobiliaty. We LIKE being
insulted by noblemen,--it shows they're familiar with us. Law
bless us! I've known many and many a genlmn about town who'd
rather be kicked by a lord than not be noticed by him; they've even
had an aw of ME, because I was a lord's footman. While my master
was hectoring in the parlor, at Balong, pretious airs I gave myself
in the kitching, I can tell you; and the consequints was, that we
were better served, and moar liked, than many pipple with twice our
Deuceace had some particklar plans, no doubt, which kep him so long
at Balong; and it clearly was his wish to act the man of fortune
there for a little time before he tried the character of Paris. He
purchased a carridge, he hired a currier, he rigged me in a fine
new livry blazin with lace, and he past through the Balong bank a
thousand pounds of the money he had won from Dawkins, to his credit
at a Paris house; showing the Balong bankers at the same time, that
he'd plenty moar in his potfolie. This was killin two birds with
one stone; the bankers' clerks spread the nuse over the town, and
in a day after master had paid the money every old dowyger in
Balong had looked out the Crabs' family podigree in the Peeridge,
and was quite intimate with the Deuceace name and estates. If
Sattn himself were a lord, I do beleave there's many vurtuous
English mothers would be glad to have him for a son-in-law.
Now, though my master had thought fitt to leave town without
excommunicating with his father on the subject of his intended
continental tripe, as soon as he was settled at Balong he roat my
Lord Crabbs a letter, of which I happen to have a copy. It ran
"BOULOGNE, January 25.
"MY DEAR FATHER,--I have long, in the course of my legal studies,
found the necessity of a knowledge of French, in which language all
the early history of our profession is written, and have determined
to take a little relaxation from chamber reading, which has
seriously injured my health. If my modest finances can bear a two
months' journey, and a residence at Paris, I propose to remain
there that period.
"Will you have the kindness to send me a letter of introduction to
Lord Bobtail, our ambassador? My name, and your old friendship
with him, I know would secure me a reception at his house; but a
pressing letter from yourself would at once be more courteous, and
"May I also ask you for my last quarter's salary? I am not an
expensive man, my dear father, as you know; but we are no
chameleons, and fifty pounds (with my little earnings in my
profession) would vastly add to the agremens of my continental
"Present my love to all my brothers and sisters. Ah! how I wish
the hard portion of a younger son had not been mine, and that I
could live without the dire necessity for labor, happy among the
rural scenes of my childhood, and in the society of my dear sisters
and you! Heaven bless you, dearest father, and all those beloved
ones now dwelling under the dear old roof at Sizes.
"Ever your affectionate son,
"THE RIGHT HON. THE EARL OF CRABS, &c.,
SIZES COURT, BUCKS."
To this affeckshnat letter his lordship replied, by return of
poast, as follos:--
"MY DEAR ALGERNON,--Your letter came safe to hand and I enclose you
the letter for Lord Bobtail as you desire. He is a kind man, and
has one of the best cooks in Europe.
"We were all charmed with your warm remembrances of us, not having
seen you for seven years. We cannot but be pleased at the family
affection which, in spite of time and absence, still clings so
fondly to home. It is a sad, selfish world, and very few who have
entered it can afford to keep those fresh feelings which you have,
my dear son.
"May you long retain them, is a fond father's earnest prayer. Be
sure, dear Algernon, that they will be through life your greatest
comfort, as well as your best worldly ally; consoling you in
misfortune, cheering you in depression, aiding and inspiring you to
exertion and success.
"I am sorry, truly sorry, that my account at Coutts's is so low,
just now, as to render a payment of your allowance for the present
impossible. I see by my book that I owe you now nine quarters, or
450L. Depend on it, my dear boy, that they shall be faithfully
paid over to you on the first opportunity.
"By the way, I have enclosed some extracts from the newspapers,
which may interest you: and have received a very strange letter
from a Mr. Blewitt, about a play transaction, which, I suppose, is
the case alluded to in these prints. He says you won 4700L. from
one Dawkins: that the lad paid it; that he, Blewitt, was to go what
he calls 'snacks' in the winning; but that you refused to share the
booty. How can you, my dear boy, quarrel with these vulgar people,
or lay yourself in any way open to their attacks? I have played
myself a good deal, and there is no man living who can accuse me of
a doubtful act. You should either have shot this Blewitt or paid
him. Now, as the matter stands, it is too late to do the former;
and, perhaps, it would be Quixotic to perform the latter. My
dearest boy! recollect through life that YOU NEVER CAN AFFORD TO BE
DISHONEST WITH A ROQUE. Four thousand seven hundred pounds was a
great coup, to be sure.
"As you are now in such high feather, can you, dearest Algernon!
lend me five hundred pounds? Upon my soul and honor, I will repay
you. Your brothers and sisters send you their love. I need not
add, that you have always the blessings of your affectionate
"P.S.--Make it 500, and I will give you my note-of-hand for a
. . . . . .
I needn't say that this did not QUITE enter into Deuceace's
eyedears. Lend his father 500 pound, indeed! He'd as soon have
lent him a box on the year! In the fust place, he hadn seen old
Crabs for seven years, as that nobleman remarked in his epistol; in
the secknd he hated him, and they hated each other; and nex, if
master had loved his father ever so much, he loved somebody else
better--his father's son, namely: and sooner than deprive that
exlent young man of a penny, he'd have sean all the fathers in the
world hangin at Newgat, and all the "beloved ones," as he called
his sisters, the Lady Deuceacisses, so many convix at Bottomy Bay.
The newspaper parrografs showed that, however secret WE wished to
keep the play transaction, the public knew it now full well.
Blewitt, as I found after, was the author of the libels which
appeared right and left:
"GAMBLING IN HIGH LIFE--the HONORABLE Mr. D--c--ce again!--This
celebrated whist-player has turned his accomplishments to some
profit. On Friday, the 16th January, he won five thousand pounds
from a VERY young gentleman, Th-m-s Sm-th D-wk-ns, Esq., and lost
two thousand five hundred to R. Bl-w-tt, Esq., of the T-mple. Mr.
D. very honorably paid the sum lost by him to the honorable whist-
player, but we have not heard that, BEFORE HIS SUDDEN TRIP TO
PARIS, Mr. D--uc--ce paid HIS losings to Mr. Bl-w-tt."
Nex came a "Notice to Corryspondents:"
"Fair Play asks us, if we know of the gambling doings of the
notorious Deuceace? We answer, WE DO; and, in our very next
Number, propose to make some of them public."
. . . . . .
They didn't appear, however; but, on the contry, the very same
newspeper, which had been before so abusiff of Deuceace, was now
loud in his praise. It said:--
"A paragraph was inadvertently admitted into our paper of last
week, most unjustly assailing the character of a gentleman of high
birth and talents, the son of the exemplary E-rl of Cr-bs. We
repel, with scorn and indignation, the dastardly falsehoods of the
malignant slanderer who vilified Mr. De--ce-ce, and beg to offer
that gentleman the only reparation in our power for having thus
tampered with his unsullied name. We disbelieve the RUFFIAN and
HIS STORY, and most sincerely regret that such a tale, or SUCH A
WRITER, should ever have been brought forward to the readers of
This was satisfactory, and no mistake: and much pleased we were at
the denial of this conshentious editor. So much pleased that
master sent him a ten-pound noat, and his complymints. He'd sent
another to the same address, BEFORE this parrowgraff was printed;
WHY, I can't think: for I woodn't suppose any thing musnary in a
Well, after this bisniss was concluded, the currier hired, the
carridge smartened a little, and me set up in my new livries, we
bade ojew to Bulong in the grandest state posbill. What a figure
we cut! and, my i, what a figger the postillion cut! A cock-hat, a
jackit made out of a cow's skin (it was in cold weather), a pig-
tale about 3 fit in length, and a pair of boots! Oh, sich a pare!
A bishop might almost have preached out of one, or a modrat-sized
famly slep in it. Me and Mr. Schwigshhnaps, the currier, sate
behind in the rumbill; master aloan in the inside, as grand as a
Turk, and rapt up in his fine fir-cloak. Off we sett, bowing
gracefly to the crowd; the harniss-bells jinglin, the great white
hosses snortin, kickin, and squeelin, and the postilium cracking
his wip, as loud as if he'd been drivin her majesty the quean.
. . . . . .
Well, I shan't describe our voyitch. We passed sefral sitties,
willitches, and metrappolishes; sleeping the fust night at Amiens,
witch, as everyboddy knows, is famous ever since the year 1802 for
what's called the Pease of Amiens. We had some, very good, done
with sugar and brown sos, in the Amiens way. But after all the
boasting about them, I think I like our marrowphats better.
Speaking of wedgytables, another singler axdent happened here
concarning them. Master, who was brexfasting before going away,
told me to go and get him his fur travling-shoes. I went and toald
the waiter of the inn, who stared, grinned (as these chaps always
do), said "Bong" (which means, very well), and presently came back.
I'M BLEST IF HE DIDN'T BRING MASTER A PLATE OF CABBITCH! Would you
bleave it, that now, in the nineteenth sentry, when they say
there's schoolmasters abroad, these stewpid French jackasses are so
extonishingly ignorant as to call a CABBIDGE a SHOO! Never, never
let it be said, after this, that these benighted, souperstitious,
misrabble SAVIDGES, are equill, in any respex, to the great
Brittish people. The moor I travvle, the moor I see of the world,
and other natiums, I am proud of my own, and despise and deplore
the retchid ignorance of the rest of Yourup.
Back to Full Books