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"Tell him," said I, "never to use that again, except for cheese-toasting, picking his teeth, and so forth." "Yes, massa; me tell him you say so." "I say, Snowball," added I, "hadn't you better put a little oil on his face, to keep off the mosquitos? If they get at him as he is now, they'll drive him mad.” “Ah no, massa," said Blackey, regretfully; "no muskitto here, dis tree, five week; dis place too cold, mosh very. Let alone, no muskitto on de wottah here, nebber at no time."

I hurried back, and found Captain Gabion supporting the Major, who stood with both hands spread out over his right eye, and, to all appearance, suffering intense agony. Blood was visible between his fingers, and on his cheek. The Captain, solicitous to ascertain the amount of injury, made a gentle attempt to withdraw the Major's hands.

"Don't! don't!" gasped the Major. "Has he got my eye-in his pocket?"

"All right, all right," replied the Captain; " you have still a spare eye to wink with. Near thing, though."

"To-night I meant to have slept at Villa Franca," said the Major, still speaking as if his agony was extreme. "My man is waiting just by with the horses, at the chafriz."

"Nonsense, nonsense!" said Captain Gabion; "to-night you must sleep at our quarters. Pledget is there, and will look at your eye. Mr Y-, there's the chafriz; that stone fountain, where you see the open space."

I stepped in that direction, and found an English servant, holding two horses. The Major had intended to "polish off" the skipper, mount forthwith, and away for Sacavem at a hand-gallop. So he might; only that the skipper, according to his own ideas of manly combat, having got his opponent undermost, and secured a grip of

the Major's love-lock with his four fingers, had hooked his thumb-nail, and eke a portion of his thumb, in the

but enough. I brought up the man and horses, and with some difficulty we got the Major to the hotel.

Pledget was there, examined the eye, did not consider the injury serious, but deferred giving any decided opinion. Ordered the Major to bed, and prescribed leeches: wanted to apply a poultice, but the patient couldn't bear the pressure. For a few days he remained a prisoner. After that, I met him in the streets with a green shadeeye doing well. Next spring, saw him on duty. No damage was then visible, save and except a small scar at the inner corner of the eye.

How soon, or how slowly, the skipper recovered from his polishing I never learned. The skipper, it appears, a year or two before the American war broke out, had put into the Tagus in a vessel from New Orleans, damaged. She was detained for repairs; and he, not liking an idle life, had procured employment in a Falmouth ship. After the war commenced, he chose to continue in the packet line. The exact nature of his offence, offered to the Major, I never ascertained. But it was something connected with the pumping of bilgewater, when the Major was suffering from sea-sickness, prostrate on the deck. Some years after, I heard of the skipper again. He had left Falmouth, and had obtained the command of a packet running between Southampton and the coast of France. He still had a bad name for insulting and ill-treating his passengers; and, what is curious, he again received a polishing from an English officer, at Dieppe. On this occasion, if I mistake not, the operator was an officer of the engineers. Whether said officer came out of the mêlée a Cyclopsthe little dog forgot to mention.


The morning after our landing from the packet, I sought out, and with some difficulty discovered, my uncle's office; where I was very cordially received by both uncles, and very politely by the other gentlemen of the department. I announced myself

prepared to start forthwith for headquarters; fully expecting to be off that night, or next day at latest. Uncle No. 1 told me I must go home with him to dinner, and see my aunt and cousins. Uncle No. 2 advised me to look out for a billet.

All this sounded ominous. The sympathising reader is already advised, that my progress from Lisbon to headquarters was not quite so expeditious as I had anticipated. The cause of the delay was this.

My dear mother, as I have already related, had overruled all objections to my joining the Peninsular army; and through her influence, my honoured father gave his reluctant consent. Shortly after, he was ordered to sea his ship left the Downs; and he did not return, till after my departure from England. As the time of my departure drew nigh, my dear mother, left to her own cogitations, began to view the subject in a very different light. In short, she was perfectly frightened at her own act; and, when it came to the last, wrote off, without my knowledge, a letter to my uncle No. 2, entreating him by all means to detain me at Lisbon, not for the world to send me up the country-in short, to keep me far beyond the sound, let alone the range, of hostile cannon. Her letter, posted at Deal the very day I started thence for London, came out to Lisbon by the same conveyance with myself; and was doubtless in my uncle's hands, when I presented myself at the office. Many years after, in looking over some old correspondence, I found a letter of hers to my father at sea, revealing the whole plot.

Next morning, I again presented myself, still expecting to receive my orders, and be off slick to headquarters. Uncle No. 2 was there; hoped I had not been much tormented with bugs and fleas; pointed out a desk with a high seat; and informed me-that was my place!

The scene, which would have instantly appalled the whole department, had I given expression to my feelings, was happily prevented by one reflection, which struck me just in time; viz., that I was now an employé, bound to obedience by military law, and that Nunky was my commanding officer.

I sulkily took my seat; and Nunky left me for a few minutes, to the pleasing process of mental digestion. Presently, he stood by my side with a huge bundle of papers:-laid the papers on my desk.

"A fortnight," said he, "will probably elapse ere you can proceed to headquarters. I wish, in the mean time, you would just see what you can do, in arranging these convalescent accounts. We could not spare a hand for them, and they have got sadly into arrear. Do try what you can make of them."

I went to work;-worked hard for a fortnight. At the end of that time, with occasional directions from my uncle, the confused mass of accounts was reduced to something like order. Still nothing was said about my journey to headquarters. Fresh work was given me, which took another week. I began to get regularly savage-was rapidly turning misanthrope-sympathised with George Barnwell. Nunky requested my company in a private room.

"You came out," said he, pecting to go up the country.

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"Yes; and on that understanding I applied for the appointment, as I expressed in my letter from England. On that understanding too, unless I mistook the reply, my services were accepted."

"Well, G-," said he, "I put it to yourself. The fact is, those plaguy convalescent accounts have given us more trouble than all the business of the office besides. Till you came out, we never have had a clerk that could do them. You do them excellently. Of course, you are well aware the public service is the first thing. The long and the short of it is, you perform this duty so much to our satisfaction, your uncle J- and I have come to the determination—we must keep you with us at Lisbon.

This, my dear madam, with the exception of being crossed in loveand to that, you know, we all are liable-was my first serious disappointment in life. Baulked in my schemes of military glory-for already, in imagination, I was a gentleman volunteer, had mounted a breach, and won a commission-I had now but one remedy; to resign my clerkship, and return forthwith to England. And this, under other circumstances, I should doubtless have done. But the case, as I then viewed it, stood thus. Here were my two dear uncles, with enormous responsibility-that of

dispensing and accounting for the whole ready-money transactions of the Peninsular army; here was one miserable branch of accounts, which gave them more trouble than all the rest; and here was I, the only lad that could tackle it. Though that, by the bye, was just so much soft solder; for there were at least a dozen gentlemen in our department, who could have made up and kept the convalescent books quite as well as myself, and probably far better.

Well; bad luck to the shilling. There was no remedy; so I settled to my work; devoting my leisure hours, as a safety-valve, to the furious study of Portuguese and Spanish. blew off my wrath, and in after years proved of good service.


But I rather suspect, gentle reader, you're a bloody-minded fellow, and want to get away without further bother from Lisbon to the seat of war, among shot and shells, grape, canister and congreves. So, cutting it short, I shall just tell you how, at last, I out-generalled my dear uncle, and broke from bondage. After that, if you've no objection, we'll be off at once to join the army.

Please to bear in mind, then, that I was utterly unconscious of any wish that I should remain at Lisbon, on the part of my honoured parents, or either of them. Had I been aware, I would have acquiesced. My position, according to the view which I now took of it, was this. My parents had acceded to my scheme of joining the army my uncles had brought me out upon that understanding, and upon no other and yet, on my arrival, instead of forwarding me up the country, had, for no earthly reason that I could discover, detained me at Lisbon, to discharge a duty which, it was now perfectly clear, might quite as well have been committed to other hands. This, I say, being my actual view of the case, you will not think it strange that I deemed it perfectly fair to employ all lawful means for my own enlargement and emancipation.

An opportunity presented itself, in the early part of 1814. The Allied army was now in the Pyrenees and south of France. Convoys of specie had been, from time to time, despatched to headquarters; and were

always accompanied by a clerk or conductor of our department, who went in charge. While headquarters remained in Portugal, or were not far advanced into Spain, this duty was considered an agreeable change, and was rather sought than shunned. But, as the distance lengthened, the departmental view of the subject became different. The journey was now tedious, and began to be deemed unsafe. Reports occasionally reached us of British officers ill treated, robbed, or murdered on the road, by our brave Spanish allies. Our conductors, who were for the most part natives, began to be very subject to the fever of the country. Whenever their turn came to take the charge of treasure to headquarters, they were sure to have it. Well; how could they help that? You see, it was an intermittent fever. In this condition of affairs, another large amount of specie was counted out, packed, and all ready for remittance: and-no conductor being forthcoming-one of my fellow-clerks received directions to make the usual preparations for attending it to headquarters. Obeyed, as a matter of course; but didn't like it at all. Communicated to me his secret sorrowswas really far from strong-would much prefer remaining at Lisbon. My determination was taken: I volunteer, as his substitute. Proposed my plan, to which he assented with hilarity.

Still, there was need of management. Had I spoken to Nunky in private, I knew full well I should be foiled. Combining persuasion with authority, he would discourage the scheme, and I should have no course but acquiescence. So, waiting till office-hours, I took my usual place, expecting his appearance in the great room, where half-a-dozen of us were seated together at our desks.

His step was heard in the passage. Half-a-dozen tongues ceased to wag, and half-a-dozen pens went hard to work, while half-a-dozen noses came into close contiguity to half-a-dozen official documents. Nunky entered, took his seat, and commenced the perusal of a pile of letters. I stood beside him.

“Well, G-?"

"I believe, sir, Mr N- has re

ceived instructions to prepare for a journey to headquarters. Not being in very good health, he would be glad, with your permission, to remain at Lisbon. I therefore beg leave to offer myself as his substitute."

Nunky gave me a look :-saw at once that he was beat. In private, he might have urged his objections but, before the whole office, he could not appear to dissuade me from taking my turn at a duty, now considered anything but agreeable. No course, then, remained for him, but to signify his consent. "Oh, very well," said he, "if that's the way you've settled it between yourselves. Of course, I can have no objection. Get the usual advance, then; draw your allowance for a mule; and have all ready for starting the day after tomorrow."

Exchanging winks with my fellowsubs, right and left, I returned triumphant to my seat. Nunky remained a few minutes at his desk, evidently in a little bit of a fidget. How could I tell that, do you think, when I sat with my back to him? Oh, I suppose you never were a clerk in a public office. Else you wouldn't require to be informed, that office-clerks have eyes in the back of their heads. When the governor is present, his actions, each and all, are seen and chronicled by every subordinate in the room. And a great relief it is, let me tell you, to the tedium of public business, to recount, criticise, and dramatise them, the moment he's off. Nunky took up a letter, and began to read it-laid it down unread-took up another-rose from his seat-sat down again-put on his hat-and bolted.

Dicky Gossip-a Portuguese clerk commonly so called-rushed forthwith to the front office, and returned with equal rapidity. "Ah, Mister Y-, you is doane. You no sall go up to de coantree deece toim. Your oankle I vos see him git into him coashe. Ah, him gallop down de treet, faster as four mules can carry him. Ah, Mister Y-, I sall tell you vot!"

In the course of the afternoon, I received a message to attend my uncle in another apartment. He met me

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'Well, G-," said he, "I wish you had mentioned that business this morning in private. Then, you know, we would have talked it over together. As, however, you chose to tender your services in the public room, of course I was forced to view the thing officially, and there's no remedy for it. You have volunteered for headquarters, and to headquarters you must go."

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"Oh, thank you, sir! thank you. That's just what I always wished."

"Just what you always wished? Of course I know that, as well as you can tell me, Mr G. Happy to say, though, I have effected one arrangement, which will make matters far safer, and more agreeable too."

"I fear, sir, if you send me off without the treasure, you will have some difficulty-"

"No, no, G-; you and the treasure will go together; that of course. But the fact is, I've been thinking those Spanish fellows behave so ill, I'm hardly justified in forwarding so large an amount of specie by land, all the way from Lisbon to the Pyrenees. In short, since you spoke to me this morning, I have been on board the flag-ship-seen the admiral. You and the treasure go to Passages in a frigate. Beautiful vessel— passed under her stern in coming ashore."

Alas, my object, then, was only half effected! I was to join the army, but not to travel through Spain. Nunky saw my chagrin, and chuckled.

"Come, come, Mr G-," said he, "you beat me this morning; now I've beat you. So make up your mind to a voyage by his Majesty's frigate the M-. Be quick with your arrangements, for she's prepared to sail at a moment's warning. We shall ship the treasure instanter. So everything is ready, when you are."

The next day, at noon, I stood on the deck of the M-, a silent and admiring spectator of a grand peristrephic panorama, as we glided down the Tagus under easy sail.


No occurrence worthy of record signalised our voyage from Lisbon to Passages. As you are a member of the Yacht Club, though, and passionately fond of romantic scenery, follow my advice, and treat yourself, some fine week in the summer, to a run along the north coast of Spain-say from Cape Finisterre to the mouth of the Bidassoa. By the bye, hadn't you better reverse it? An awkward thing you'd find it, to catch an on-shore wind at the head of the Bay of Biscay. What would become of you— ah, and what would become of that clever little craft of yours, the Water Wagtail, with her dandified rig, and her enormous breadth of beam, and her six pretty little brass popguns as bright as candlesticks, should a stiff north-wester surprise you on that horrid coast? Won't it be better, then, to secure some safe roadstead-the Gironde for instance-make that your starting-point; choose your weather; and, coasting along the shores of Biscay and Asturias, have the pleasure of feeling that you are running out of the Bay, and not running into it?

That I leave to you. But depend upon it, if you visit that coast, you will see not merely rocks, not merely mountains, not merely wild scenery; but scenery so peculiar in character, that you will not easily find the like. Such was the scenery which, on a fine day towards the beginning of March, 1814, I viewed one morning early, standing by the side of the Hon. Mr Beckenham, third lieutenant of the M-. Mr B., having the morning watch, and thinking it dull alone, had persuaded me to turn out, long, long before breakfast ;-as he said the night before, "to view that magnificent coast at daybreak ;" but, as he obligingly informed me when I came on deck, “that he might enjoy the pleasure of my agreeable society."

The scene, at a first glance, rather disappointed my expectations. "Stupendous ridge of mountains those Santillanos, though," said Mr B.; "equal, I should think, to the Pyrenees themselves-of which, in fact, they are a continuation, though some maps of Spain don't show it."

The view, as I viewed it, had a threefold character. First, there was the coast itself; a black line, occasionally diversified with specks of white; this line a ledge of rocks, extending along shore as far as the eye could reach, both east and west. The ocean-swell, incessantly rolling in, though the morning was still, thundered on this eternal sea-wall: and the surf, of which, at our distance, the eye distinguished nothing but those white specks, visible from time to time, presented, when viewed with a glass, every conceivable variety and vagary of breaking waves: the foam now rushing up some sloping shelf, like troops storming a breach; now arched sublime in a graceful curve, that descended in a smoking deluge of spray; now shooting vertically to a columnar height, as though the breaker had first dashed downwards into some dark abyss, and then, reverberated, flew sky-high in a pillar of froth. Beyond this line of rocks, appeared, sccondly, a ridge of low hills, presenting nothing very remarkable, either in aspect or in outline. And beyond these again, further up the country, appeared, thirdly, a very respectable and loftier range mountains, if you're a Lincolnshire man, and choose to call them so.

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"So, this is your ridge of mountains," said I. Stupendous? I don't call twelve or fourteen hundred feet stupendous, anyhow. And I'm inclined to think you might look down on most of them, at that altitude."

"You don't see them," said he. "You are looking at the coast range. Do you perceive nothing beyond ?"

"Nothing but a few light clouds," said I, "in the sickly blue of the morning sky."

"Well, look at them," replied Mr B. "View those clouds attentively. Watch whether they change their shape, as clouds usually do, when seen near the horizon."

I watched, but there was no visible change. The clouds were fixtures! Sure enough, those faint, pale streaks above the hills, that gleamed like aerial patches of silver vapour, were no other than the lofty summits of

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