ePub 版

Antony in Egypt amidst his lascivious vassals, lights with all possible speed, and not to waste the midoutdoes him only in the grandeur of the matter ! night oil for the gratification of their two spectators.

Kean and Hughes therefore came forward, hand in " Thou didst drink

hand, bowed in dumb show and retired. The whole of The stale of horses, and the gilded puddle

the evening's performance was condensed into this panWhich beasts would cough at: thy palate then did deign tomime; except that they afterwards (very reluctantly) The roughest berry on the rudest hedge;

returned their visiters the eighteen pence that lay at the Yea, like the stag, when snow the pasture sheets, bottom of the money-taker's box. That night, as par. The bark of trees thou browsed'st on the Alps : | liamentary reporters say, there was no house." It is reported thou didst eat strange flesh,

This romance of starvation appears to have Which some did die to look on-"

been too much for Kean at last, and he made -It is unnecessary to carry our hero as far as desperate efforts for a decent engagement. He this, any more than to liken Clarges street and had lost several, we should mention, by his own Mrs. Kean to Egypt and Cleopatra, but Kean's outrageous profligacy of conduct. destitution was sufficiently frightful :

“ He wrote to Dublin, but received no answer : he “At York, as we have said, he arrived utterly desti. wrote to Edinburgh : he wrote to Mr. John Kemble, for tute. So extreme was his need, that he wished to enlist a third line of business, and received no answer! He as a common soldier, and actually presented himself, for offered to teach fencing—to teach dancing : but no one that purpose, to an officer attached to a regiment at would become his pupil. At last, Mr. Fisher engaged York, who very goodnaturedly dissuaded him from his him to act for four nights at the Teignmouth Theatre, design. He was, perhaps, as desperate of attaining the and laid the foundation of his fortunes.” objects of his ambition, at this particular time, as at any The accomplished Dr. Drury saw him first al period of his chequered life. And with his despair, his Teignmouth, was startled by his acting, and prowife's despondency naturally kept pace. She saw no mised to interest himself with Grenfell and hope of extricating her infants from the load of misery Whitbread. The following scene which occurand want which oppressed them. More than has knelt down by the side of her bed, in which the two red shortly after at Dorchester, was the dawn of half-famished children lay, and prayed that they and her. what followed :self might at once be released from their sufferings.

"One night, after having dressed for his part at home, Happily, they were relieved by the intervention of a he threw a large cloak over his theatrical attire, and friend. The wife of a Mr. Nokes (then a dancing.mas. took his way gloomily to the play-house. He was to ter at York), heard of their extreme distress, and went act Octavian in The Mountaineers,' and 'a Savage' in with a heart brim full of benevolence to their aid. She some farce-Kankoo, it is believed, in · Perouse.' Mrs. was shown up to the room where Mrs. Kean and the chil. Kean remained at home. She was employed, nursing dren were, and after having ascertained the report con- their sick child in the only little room they had, when cerning their condition, she spoke kindly to them all about midnight she heard a quick step approaching the put something in Mrs. Kean's hand, wished her good door. Suddenly Kean himself entered : he was in a morning, and left the house. On her departure, Mrs. state of extreme agitation, and could scarcely speak. Kean opened the paper which this excellent woman had At last he made an effort and cried out, “My fortune is left, and discovered that she had given her a five pound made ! my fortune is made!'. His eye at that moment bank note! She threw herself on her knees, and falling on his suffering child, he qualified his cxultation fainted. They had been rescued from absolute starva. Let but Howard live,' said he, in a gentler voi tion. Mrs. Nokes's kindness did not stop here. She we shall all be happy yet.' To Mrs. Rean's inqu...es as interested her husband on behalf of her protégés; and to what had caused this tumult, he replied nearly to the he (who seems to have deserved such a wife) lent Kean following effect. [The events of this night had such a the room in which he received his pupils. An impedi- prodigious effect upon the fortunes of himself and bis ment, indeed, was unexpectedly thrown in the way of family, that almost every particular (many of which this kind act, by Nukes's landlord (a person by the name would else have been, at this distance of time indistinct) of Flower, a clergyman), who said that no theatrical remains clear and unforgotten.) people should have the room ;' but this was finally sur. mounted by the independent spirit of Nokes. He re. wretched house. A few people in the pit and gallery,

“ • When the curtain drew up,' Kean began, 'I saw a solved that Kean should have the use of the room, and and three persons in the boxes, showed the quantity of accordingly the tragedian had it, gave his recitations in attraction that we possessed. In the stage-box, how. it, and cleared 91. by his exertions."

ever, there was a gentleman who appeared to understand Hope sometimes whispered something, but it acting. He was very attentive to the performance. was always a flattering tale. The scene is Glou- Seeing this, I was determined to play my best. The cester:

strange man did not applaud; but his looks told me that

he was pleased. After the play, I went to the dress“ In this hungry season, when there was a failure of room,' (this was under the stage] 'to change my dress the general harvest, it occurred to the sufferers that for the "Savage,' so that I could hear every word that something might still be forced, perhaps out of the usual was said over head. I heard a gentleman (who I course ; at all events, it was necessary to make the ex- supposed was the gentleman of the stage-box) ask periment. Two of them therefore resolved to take a Lee the name of the performer who played the prinbencfit: Kean and Jack Hughes were the adventurers. cipal character. • Oh!' answered Lee, his name is They put up, Cure for the Heartache' (a play implying Kean-a wonderful clever fellow; a great little man. hope, at least), and Kean was to enact Young Rapid. The He's going to London. He has got an engagement bills were printed and distributed with more than ordi- from Mr. Whitbread ;-a great man, sir.' Indeed!' nary diligence; the doors were unclosed, the lamps replied the gentleman, 'I am glad to hear it. He is cerlighted, the curtain drawn up, when, behold!—in boxes, tainly very clever ; but he is very small. His mind is pit

, and gallery, there appeared the staggering sum of large : no matter for his heighi,' returned Lee to this. onc shilling and sixpence in hard cash! A privy coun- By this time I was dressed for the "Savage,' and I there. cil was held ; and it was resolved to extinguish the fore mounted up to the stage. The gentlemen bowed to

[ocr errors]

me, and complimented me slightly upon my play, ob- grace his entrance into the metropolis. Elliston, as the serving, 'Your manager says you are engaged for Lon. principal person of the company, led the procession. don ? I am offered a trial,' said I, and if I succeed, The actors followed, according to rank, and al due time I understand that I am to be engaged.' • Well,' said the arrived at Barnet. This was the place which Kean had gentleman, 'will you breakfast with me in the morn. appointed for receiving them. They were all to breaking? I am at the

hotel. I shall be glad to fast there, and then to return, in the tragedian's train, to see you.

My name is Arnold ; I am the-Manager of London. On encountering the great actor, they were Drury lane Theatre. I staggered as if I had been shot. about to welcome him, each after his own fashion, when My acting in the "Savage' was done for. However, I he stopped them, with a serious air.

· Before you say a stumbled through the part, and-here I am.''

word, my merry men,' said he— Behold! fall down,

and kiss this relic! This is the toe-bone of the greatest We have no desire, after the remarks we have creature that ever walked the earth—of George Fredefelt it a duty to make, to dwell more particularly ric Cooke. He was lying without a monument, till I on the few details of Mr. Kean's private history put one over him. Come, down with you all, and kiss (after his eminence) which are given in these the bone !' Elliston, between doubt and reverence, fell volumes. It inspires as much disgust, as the upon his knees and kissed the ridiculous relic. Another illiterate gabble, with which he seems, on all oc- dropped down with difficulty—("Our son was fat.") casions, to have stuffed the landlords of inns, and Then another came, and another; and thus actor after the members of the Drury lane Theatrical Fund, actor followed, from the beginning to the end of the line, inspires contempt. We cannot help expressing, down to breakfast, with what appetite' we cannot prehowever, our very warm admiration of the con- tend to say. In an hour or two, the procession formed duct of Mr. Charles Kean, as it is indicated, with again, and, with Kean at its head, took the road to Loninfinite delicacy, a few lines towards the con- don. 'Our hero, still a treasurer (of relics), although he clusion of the work. The tenderness of a son, had given up the post of master and treasurer to the and the conscious firmness of a gentleman, were Drury lane Fund, led the way to his house in Clarges never more forcibly displayed. We would cor- street. Arrived there, the greater part of his brother dially join in the hope expressed for his future actors left him, and Kean proceeded to the library. His success in his profession, but that we have every first words were (to his wife,, 'I have brought Charles a reason to believe his success already assured by fortune. I have brought something that the Directors his own exertions, beyond the reach of hope or of the British Museum would give ten thousand pounds fear. We should like to know, by the bye, whe- for; but-they shan't have it. Mrs. Kean, lost in won.

Look here!' said he, prother the interesting letter to Mrs. Kean, quoted der, inquired what it was

. at the end of the work, was really written at the ducing it. Here it is. Here is the toe-bone of the

greatest man that ever lived—the illustrious George time mentioned, and answered as stated. We Frederic Cooke! With that he proceeded to deposit it more than doubt this, though it does not inter- gently on the mantel-piece, saying, in caution, · Now, fere, one way or the other, with the propriety of observe, I put this on the mantel-piece; but let no one the course adopted by Mrs. Kean, whose conduct dare to touch it. You may all look at itat a distance; we think to have been irreproachable. It is merely but be sure that no one presumes to handle it. Here right that, as a matter of interest, the circum- it remained for several months. Occasionally (to an instance should be given correctly.

telligent visiter) he would explain the merits of the There are some points in the book which we bone; but otherwise, it was honoured only by his own mean to take another opportunity of adverting to. single admiration. His wife detested the bone. The Meanwhile we leave it with every wish for its servants hated it. The maids were afraid of it. They success; sure that it deserves it, and grateful to thought (probably) that it would get up and act. But the author (Mr. Barry Cornwall) for the way in meddling with it. At last-it was one dull evening, which he has acquitted himself of a very delicate when Kean had been absent from home for several days, and difficult task. We should mention that an and his wife was tired of waiting and watching for interesting introduction prefaces the life, retro- him—the detestable toe-bone presented itself to her sight. spective of actors and acting. It was a pity, A few bitter words escaped her. She felt inclined to however, to forget in it the great artist, Le Kain, commit profanation on the relic, but contented herself who restored nature to the French stage.

with walking up and down, eyeing the object of her hus.

band's adoration with the most sincere disgust. She apWe now copy a Transatlantic anecdote : proached again ; and finally seized the bone (protecting

her fingers by a piece of paper), and cauted it without "Cooke was buried in New York; and when Kean ceremony into the adjoining garden. This garden bewas there, he visited what was supposed to be his grave. longed to the Duke of Portland, and contained a well, Being a great admirer of the dead tragedian, he caused which was dry; and it was into this well that the illushis body to be taken up and removed to another place, trious bone descended. In an instant, the House of and over the new grave he erected a monument, in ho. Portland was unconsciously richer, by ten thousand tour of the actor's genius. In the transition, from the pounds, than it had been the hour before. The tse-bone old grave to the new, Kean abstracted one of the toe. I was theirs ! Was, do we say? Nay, it is theirs still, bones. It was a little black relic, and might have passed up to this present writing. It may easily be sup. for a tobacco slopper. Some persons even said, ' How posed, that a deed of this sort could not have been perpe. do you know that this belonged to Cooke?' but the in- trated without important consequences. Accordingly, dignation of Kean at such scepticism, stifled all further Mrs. Kean soon began to experience some fearful questioning. He deposited the bone in his dressing- alarms; and these were not allayed by a thundering rap case, perfectly satisfied with its identity, locked it care at the door, which announced the tragedian's return. fully up, and brought it to England. When he arrived The door was opened, and he went straight into the here

, the Drury lane Company, rejoicing at the return library,-very drunk.' Whenever he was drunk, he of their head, resolved to meet and welcome him at went to the toe for consolation. But now,--the loe was some 'distance from London, and (by their presence) not there! He rang the bell furiously. His wife an

VOL. XXVI. AUGUST, 1835-22

i Whal! you

greatest of abominations s—a wig. A male wig is found in him tbe sole representative of the bloom to my fancy a bad business; it never makes any- which time had so ruthlessly wiped away from body look younger or better than he would look all the rest of the family. He seemed to take to without it; it deceives nobody, and yet every- me too, and my spirits began to rise; but, accibody who wears one flatters himself that not one dentally, as I left the room, I heard him say to in a hundred discovers his secret. When a man my sister, " I say aunt, what can we do to amuse above forty is pointed out as good-looking, he is the old gentleman ?" and that was a damper ! invariably the man without the wig; but a female My disappointments were many, but to describe wig is a hundred times worse! a wig with a long them in detail would be tedious. At balls I tail, which is twisted up to act youth! a wig with found that nobody expected me to dance, unless a flower stuck in it! It is like a garland on a indeed there happened to be a lack of beaux, and tombstone, for a wig, after all, is but a memorial then my "good-naturein standing up was reof departed youth! and such a wig was my sis- marked, or some pert girl said, ter Mary's, with a bit of lily of the valley hitched figuring away !". under one of the curls. I longed to snatch it off, I was advised by all my family to marry, by all and throw it into the fire, but thought perhaps means the very thing I wished; but I never that might not be taken in good part, and I de- dreamed of proposing for any woman that was sisted.

not young and pretty ; I did propose for one that I felt miserably out of spirits, wofully disap- was decidedly both, and was rejected. pointed, and I could not tell one of the family the And had I spent the twenty best years of my cause of my depression. I felt relieved when it life, incessantly toiling to obtain wealth, in order was time to take my candle and go to bed, and, that I might return home to enjoy myself? and after so long a journey in the open air, I soon fell had I returned at last only to discover that the fast asleep. The next morning I awoke by no season for enjoyment had passed away? So it means a giant refreshed ; my wetting of the pre- would appear; but I had committed one great vious day had given me a lúmbago and pains in error, and these little confessions of an elderly all my limbs, and when I entered the breakfast- gentleman may prove a warning to others who room, with my back bent, and one leg following are similarly situated. the other with considerable difficulty, I saw Let no one dream of “beginning life at forty;" clearly that my mother and sisters looked at me were I to start again at the age of nineteen, to with compassion, and considered me a prema- play the same part, on the same stage, I should ture Methusalem.

know that on that slage my scene of youth must There was, however, an old gentleman stand-be enacted, and there the heroine of my loveing by the fire to keep me in countenance, and story must be wooed and won. If it be your lot by his side a remarkably fine young man, who, to pass so many years in a foreign land, that land on turning round at my entrance, displayed the must be the scene of your hopes and fears-your very face of my dear elder brother, just as I had joys and sorrows-your loves-your friendshipleft him twenty years before. I shuffled up to your associations.' Toil and climate may thin the lad without an instant's hesitation, and, call- the hair and tan the cheek, but the married man ing him by his name, caught him in my arms; and the father is not expected to return unto my surprise the young man laughed rather changed-he has assumed a new character; good-humouredly, but as it appeared rather with while one who, like myself, returns at the end of a feeling of awkwardness, and, without by any twenty years en garcon, to dance quadrilles and means reciprocating my endearments, walked look for a wise, will find that, in his matrimonial away to the window. The elderly gentleman, researches, it behoves him not to be over partihowever, endeavoured to make amends; he shook cular.

T.H. B. me most paternally by the hand, and apologized for my nephew's coldness. My nephew! yes, he was born two years after I left England ! and

Prom Fraser's Magazine. there was my brother, who, having now been

RETURN FROM LEAVE. married near twenty years, and possessing moreover a numerous family, had left off being a BY C. O'DONOGHUE, LATE ENSIGN (1871) ROYAL IRISH. young man, and might, as the phrase goes, be The moment an Irishman says, "Never fear, is taken for any age.

your honour: I'll engage!" depend upon it there Some men leave off being young much earlier is every reason 10 tremble, every prospect that than others; a great deal depends upon the con- his engagement will be broken; and that the stant habit of making up to go into society. By vociferations of confidence-invariably in an inmaking up, I by no means infer the use of cos verse ratio to even perhaps his expectations of metics, dyes, &c., but merely the very innocent ultimate success in the object on hand, whatever endeavour to make oneself " look one's best.” | it may be-always increase till the obvious imWhen once this babit is given up, whether from possibility of accomplishing the desired end ill-health or the withdrawing from society, there's stares him, and you, too fully in the face for furan end of the matter-there's no resuming it;ther self-deception. Then he tries to look as look in the glass, and the elderly gentleman much like an idiot as he can; and scratching his stands before you!

head, ejaculates, “That's too bad, now;" just as Here was another disappointment, and a bitter if he were quité astonished at failure. His simone; however, I made the best of it. I took a plicity is the armour in which he trusteth, and he

at fancy to my nephew, perhaps because I dons it whenever it suits his purpose-which is

always. If honest, his simplicity is genuine; if |hunters to Ennis, where I slept, from whence I a rogue, 'tis so ably counterfeited, that it defies was to procure some species of conveyance to the detection of the common observer; and, not- Limerick. Next morning, the 24th day of Dewithstanding his protestations, in all probability cember, some five or six-and-thirty years ago, the he does not care a fraction whether you succeed dawn found me on the road, occupying the only or fail-though, perhaps, he would sympathise in means of transport I could procure, viz. a hired your good fortunes, and rather wish you well, jingling jaunting-car, drawn by a blindish, lamish ihrough his constitutional good humour, than the sort of a mare, which, however, I was assured reverse. Then he depends so much on fate. by the owner and driver, was one of the best in Onwards, blundering, slapdash-headlong he Clare county, and when once warm in the collar, rushes in the teeth of common reason, with the would trot like a shot. Oh, I'll engage your blindness of a Musselman fatalist, or the insou- honour,” he said more than once, 6 we'll make siance of an eastern opium-eater ;-utterly re- out the road finely, never fear!" And, accordgardless of consequences is he in his devil'may ingly, we ended our journey twenty minutes after care career, hoping, in spite of probability, that the Cork coach, which was to have dropped me his “luck,"'" that jewel in his dower,” will be- at Fermoy, began ilshe of the jingling, jauntfriend him to the end. And if he so acts in his ing-car laying the blame as usual on his hard own affairs, will he be more circumspect in those fortune-for he swore the coach had always been of others ?' If he swims with the current, hoping at least half an hour late in starting till that very the stream may turn with his all afloat, can it be morning, "bad luck to it!" expected he will buffet the tide for you? If he Time, tide, and the 24th, never yet waited for starts in a wrong direction, he is sure to gallop a subaltern : a cock-and-bull story about the lame like fury—'tis the fault of his stars. He carries mare, though she was the best in Clare county, his stone up hill with the vigour of a dray-borse would prove but a sorry. reason in writing and pertinacity of a Sysiphus, till within a (when any thing went amiss in the regiment, we stride from the summit, when he wonders at its were asked by the commanding officer for reasons slipping from his grasp, and thundering into the in writing); and Gauntlet's reports to the Horse vale below, he sees it sink in gurgite vasto, while Guards were not waste paper. Therefore, though he exclaims, “ To the devil I pitch all bad luck!" | but as slenderly provided with cash as an Irish His bad luck is bad calculation; and you who country gentleman's son could decently be, I was trust to Paddy's luck, are but a bad calculator too. obliged to hire a chaise and proceed: which I did Yet, all things considered, it is not unpleasant without any extraordinary mishap till I arrived at being buoyed up by hope, however contrary to Kildorrery, one stage from my destination. Here right reason, arising from his cheerfully confidant the winter's night set in ; and my chance of getaffirmations of succeeding, instead of sinking to ling post-horses on to Fermoy, was but small, despair, which would be the case were he too seeing that a Charleyville chaise was standing joined in our doleful forebodings. Let not the quietly in the street, while from within a gruff stranger in Ireland, then, think himself safe voice soundly rated mine host for not having any when he is requested to "never fear, your hon- means of taking him forward to the very place Í our," nor put implicit faith in promises coupled wished to go. No horses for one traveller, still with "I'll engage.” Even when Paddy despairs less for two; we might join company,

to be sure, of accomplishing your purpose, so sweet has yet still be only united in misfortune.' The gruff been the delusion of hope in his own mind, that voice swore roundly enough, and I sympathised he cannot for the life of him find it in his heart with it; which the voice appeared to like, for it to destroy them in yours by telling you so. At invited me to join it in ihe chaise if animals the end he can always shift the responsibility could be procured. A pair had been kept by the from his shoulders by laying the fault on “luck." landlord ; but unfortunately one of the pair had

A two months' leave of absence, the first I had expired of the glanders that very morning, and received from the regiment, having expired, it was nothing could persuade its disconsolate mate to incumbent on me to rejoin the head-quarters of draw a chaise alone. The idlers about the yard, che 18th, or Royal Irish, then stationed at Fer- of which in Erin there is a plentiful abundance, moy; and as we were commanded by Col. Gaunt- suggested divers steeds; but one man's horse had let, whose name I had occasion to mention in a been carting turf all day, another's had “divil a previous paper, as being a particularly taut hand shoe to her foot,” and that of a third was averred of the old martinet school, I felt exceedingly by the owner to possess "a quare sort of a weaknervous lest some untoward circumstance should ness about her after nightfall.” At last a “cowlt,” occur to prevent my appearance at muster; belonging to an absent neighbour, was mentioned especially as my stay in the paternal mansion of as a substitute for the defunct. This suggestion dear old Bally beg had been prolonged to the last was like a spark to gunpowder. The colt was moment by my loving mother, rest her soul! who caught, harnessed, and put to with great despatch; thought she never saw enough of her darling first- but who was to drive seemed a question in the born.

yard : though why any hesitation was shown we Though the highroad from Galway to Limerick had yet to learn. At the end of five minutes' passed my father's door, no mail coach ran upon whispering, however, a loose-looking character it in those unsophisticated times. . Almost all swallowed a couple of glasses of whisky, rolled our journeys in that part of Ireland were made on his cottamore about his person, flourished a cudhorseback; and therefore, according to the usual gel, with a rope tied to it by way of a whip, ak. mode of traveling, I took one of my father's his head, seized the reins, crammed his hat VOL. XXVII.

AUGUST 1835.-21



as it was, down over his ears, and having perched I was obliged, literally speaking, to grin and bear himself on the driving-bar, gave an encouraging it. “hellups!" to the nags; but he might as well When this desperate work had continued for a have thus invoked spirits from the vasty deep- couple of minutes, Carty suddenly, altered his the chaise did not stir. “Drive on!” cried my tactics. He ceased to strike; and one of the companion, whom I had perceived by the light spectators, thinking him vanquished in the strife, from the soi-disant hotel to be a downcast, black- exclaimed, “By Gor, boy-o! the bastes have foglooking genius, like a half-washed coal-porter. ged you entirely."

“ Drive on!" was the sentiment echoed from “Divil a hap'orth, you spalpeen with an ugly the crowd in several voices id in different mod face!" ret ned our driver, “I'll start 'em yet, of phraseology. For instance: “Can't ye be never fear! Padreen agra, fetch me a sprig of after starting ?” cried one: “Hit 'em, Jack,” ex- furze out of the gap; and, little Thady, my blessclaimed another : “Baste the hide of the cowlt, ings on you!- just rowl a taste of red turf in a John Carty ; 'tis he have the raal go in his bones,” whisp of straw, and bring it hither to me, I'll roared a third : “Quilt 'em both your sowl to engage, your honour, we'll go by an' by, if we glory, Johnny !” exclaimed a fourth : "Strike him have any luck.”' strong," was the enthusiastic advice of a fifth. His emissaries performed the parts assigned; Accordingly John Carty, as it seemed our phæton one bringing a branch of a furze bush, and the junior was called, struck the old horse a thwack other appearing with a bundle of straw; but for with the butt end of his whip, which I thought what purposes these adjuncts to his cudgel were must have splintered three of his ribs at least, paraded I could not guess. Now, boys,” said with about as much and no more effect than the Carty, one of ye's howld the head of the cowlt Abbess of Andouillet's address to her mules in firm till I give the word. Are ye ready with the the Sentimental Journey, the smited steed would whisp ?not budge. He whisked the lash lightly over the “We are," answered little Thady. other's loins; the cowlt, putting its head between “Give it a whisk in the wind till it lights, my its forelegs, kicked at him like fury. But it ap-bouchal ; and, Padreen, lift up the old horse's peared that John Carty had too much of a tho- tail, and shove the sprig between it and the rough-going Jehu in his composition to be scared crupper.” by such trifles as horses' heels, for with a

“By George I wont stand this !" cried I; "these mon dioul !" he returned the colt's compliments vagabonds will have us dashed to pieces. You, in style with his cudgel, to the extreme gratifi- Carty, Carty, you scoundrel! don't you hear ?" cation of the lookers-on, who audibly encouraged “I do, your honour,” answered Jack; “but I'll both combatants. But though this interlude was engage we wont keep you long now, any way.” choice amusement to them, and even, perhaps, “I'll not pay you a'farthing," I roared; "I'll might have been fun for Jack Carty, I was by no break your head; I'll”means delighted with the prospect of a capsize. “Ah now, sir, sit aisey, can't you ?" interrupted Bang! bang! went the colt's feet against the my companion, in a most dissatisfied tone. splinter bar and front part of the post-chaise, for “When I screach Off,' thrust the whisp under that I did not much care ; whack! whack! sound the cowlt's belly, in God's name !" cried Carty, ed the driver's whip-handle on the horse's ribs in and his myrmidons promised to obey him. reply, neither did that give me pain : but I expect I endeavoured to let down the front window, ed plunging and bolting to follow, which would which, by the way, was nearly all panel, with a have upsei us in a twinkling; and accordingly little square pane of glass at top, in order to check mentioned my fears to my companion, who, how- the driver's hand with mine, but it was immovable. ever, did not appear to be at all fearful of per- Padreen had the old horse's tail in his left band, sonal accidents, as he only told me to “sit aisey.” the furze-bush in his right; a flickering flame be

To "sit aisey,” indeed, when I expected a gan to wreath round little Thady's handful of broken neck, was not part of my system at all, straw; Carty again crammed his hat down on his so I tried to open the chaise door next to me; brows, and 'held his reins tight; I expected but it was as hermetically closed (with ten-penny almost immediate annihilation; and the crowd nails I verily believed) as was the black-hole in was hushed in expectation of the eventful "ofl.” Calcutta. I cried for emancipation as vigorously "Hellups !” roared Carty ; it did as well as as a Roman catholic; I besought my friend with off.” Padreen applied his prickles to the unthe gruff voice to try the door on his side, by fortunate brute's crupper; little Thady's straw. which I had entered this unhallowed vehicle ; I blazed between the colts hind legs; and with a cursed Jack Carty from the very bottom of my jerk which I should have thought sufficiently soul, with curses both loud and deep: but my violent to break five pairs of traces, we dashed cries were unheeded amidst the din of delight forward into the gloom at a rate that in a few that rose wildly among the idlers; my new ac- seconds left the shouters of Kildorrery far behind. quaintance was obdurate ; Jack Carty was mind- It was pitch dark; I could scarcely distinguish ing his cudgel play and shifting his shins: my the outline of our driver's figure; the horses I imprecations were as froth in the tempest. The could not see; yet on we rushed, swifter than did cowlt was, typical of my lively country, lashed any chaise before, Carty hallooing to his steeds, into rage by the arch-agitator, Jack Carty: the whacking them with his cudgel, though they were chaise, the constitution it wished to kick to pieces. already at the top of their speed, as if impatient How fervently and for the only time did I pray for the moment. of our murder and his suicide. for an immediate repale of our union ! In short, I was in an agony of tremor; but my companion,

« 上一頁繼續 »