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numbers made it as evident, that they did not fall victims to private revenge.
It is not in the power of words to describe the astonishment of the whole city; things came at last to such a pass, that not a rogue of any rank durst walk the streets; complaint upon complaint was carried to the viceroy; and magistrates, guards, spies, and every other engine of power were employed to no manner of purpose. At last, when no less than fifty of the examples had been made, the viceroy took a serious resolution of putting a stop to such mischiefs, by the only method that seemed capable of reaching the evil; he caused public proclamation to be made, that he would give the sum of 2000 crowns to any person who should discover the author or authors of these murders; promising, at the same time, the like reward, with an absolute indemnity, to the person who had done them, if he would discover himself; and as a pledge of his sincerity, he went to the cathedral, and took the sacrament, that he would punctually perform every tittle of his proclamation.
The cobbler, having either satisfied his zeal for justice, or being now in a temper to secure his own safety, after having, in his own opinion, done so much service to the state, went directly to the palace, and demanded an audience of the viceroy; to whom, upon his declaring that he had something of great importance to communicate, he was admitted alone. He began with putting his excellency in mind of his oath, who assured him he meant to keep it religiously. The cobbler then proceeded to the following harangue: " I, sir, have been alone that instrument of justice, who despatched in so short a time, so many criminals. In doing this, sir, I have done no more than what was your duty to do. You, sir, who, in reality, are guilty of all the offences which these wretches have committed, deserved the same chastisement, and had met with it too, had I not respected the representative of my prince, who, I know, is accountable to God alone." He then entered into an exact detail of all the murders he had done, and the motives upon which he proceeded. The viceroy, who was thoroughly convinced that he told him no more than the truth, repeated his assurances of safety, and thanked him very affectionately for the tenderness he had shown him, adding, after all, he was ready to pay him the 2000 crowns.
Our cobbler returned the viceroy his compliments in his rough way; but told him, after what had passed, he believed it would be but prudent in him to make choice of some other city for his habitation, and that, too, in some corner of Italy, not under the jurisdiction of his Catholic majesty. The viceroy though his reasons had weight, and therefore, after thanking him in the most gracious terms, for supplying that power which the government wanted, he ordered a tartane to transport him, his family, his effects, and 200 crowns to one of the ports in the territory of Genoa; where this extraordinary person passed the remainder of his days in ease and quiet: and the city of Messina felt, for a long time after, the happy effects of his enthusiastic zeal for the public good, and for the strict execution of justice, without respect to persons.
This story, however strange, is exactly true; and, as Philip of Macedon kept a page, who, to moderate his ambition, and to put him in mind of his duty as a prince, was wont to awake him in the morning with this salutation, " Remember, Philip, that thou art a man;" so, I think, it would be happy for ministers, who are either entrusted by their masters, or acquire themselves a boundless authority, supported by boundless influence ; if they would write in a table-book, and refresh their memories frequently with this sentence: "What if the cobbler of Messina should revive?"
'J in: lone leaves whirl in quiet hours
From off the trembling tree,
Their whispers visit me :—
That shivers on life's spray,
To carry her away.
The sounds of men are dumb;
"Come, my Mekana! come.'"
My hunter-boy is gone to sleep,
He hears no voice at all,
No tear of duty fall ;—
Of music in the spring,
Nor feel the bliss they bring;—
Unto the spirit-home—
Come, my Mekana! come!"
He lies beside yon cocoa-tree
Sent by the Lord of life to see
And there with him I sit, and speak
In melancholy tones;
On my beloved's bones;—
Beside the spirits' home;
O! here like any mateless bird,
My mournful bower I make ;—
A-stirring in the brake?
In this sad world I know,
In all life's waste of woe.
The flower-clad vales to roam :—
I come, my love, I come I
J. B T.
STANZAS FOR MUSIC.
Seek not crowded streets or halls:
Where ladies young and fair assemble;
I have wreck'd my heedless heart
Wherefore do I not forget her?
Nor can I wish she knew me better!
THE YOUNG MAN OF NINETY.
A SKETCH FHOM THE LIVE,
"He is a citizen," thought I, " who, now, in the seventh day and sabbath of his old age,—wisely forsaking the mart, the 'change, and the populous paths surrounding the temple of all-worshipped Mammon —nestles here in this quiet village,
The town forgetting, by the town forgot."
It was an old gentleman, who had, a few moments before, entered the cozy, and cleanly parlour of " mine inn," and was now engaged in sipping his sherry and glancing through the paper, who had given birth to these reflections. He was, as I afterwards ascertained, ninety years old, though looking less than sixty—hearty and active— short, well set, and with legs that might make an Irish pavior misgive his own: these were handsomely clad in black silk stockings; and legs which would stand by a man in the handsome way which his had done, were worthy of the honour. A pair of buckles conferred additional brilliancy on the "brilliant Warren" of his shoes; and a smaller pair gave compactness to their knees. His coat was of the old-school cut, lengthy and capacious, ample in pocket and flap—in short, a reminiscence of the coat of " other days," ere tailors turned out that
Starveling in a scanty vest,
called an Exquisite. His hat was partly hat and partly umbrella, for it was wide enough in the brim to shelter his shoulders in a shower. His face was of a healthy hue: though there were as many lines in it as in Denner's master-piece. His features had somewhat of the Scottish character, and were what some physiognomists would call hard: but their severity was softened off by a frequent smile, full of good-nature, which gave a general expression of mildness and benevolence to his countenance,—such as a face with more pretensions to comeliness would perhaps have wanted.
There may be many human sights more glorious to behold, but I do not know one more interesting—I would almost say, more holy— than an old man, who has passed his active days amidst the stir and strife of the great Babel, and in the evening of his life sinks quietly and placidly back into the arms of nature,—a man in experience of the world—a child in the mildness and meekness of that knowledge.
Ihavesketchedtheoldman; I must now describe his companion, for he had one—a dog of the large spaniel breed, who seemed to have seai as much of the busy world as his master. We were very soon intimate, for Prince (that was the worthy four legged fellow's name) appeared to be of that amiable class of dogs, who, by a handsome person and winning manners, recommend themselves immediately to one's good opinion. His master apologized for his familiarities, and in mild terms expostulated with him on the impropriety of his conduct. "You are too dirty, Prince—do you hear, sir? you are too dirty." The conscientious beast seemed to be immediately made sensible that he was, and, taking the reproof in good part, very quietly laid himself down at the feet of his ancient friend. Prince, I suspected, had a great partiality to duck-ponds, for the weeds of those aquatic paradises still hung about him, and decorated him almost to the beatitude of a Sadler's Wells Neptune. To encourage him in decent behaviour, the old gentleman began rumaging his pockets; and the result was, the production of two nicely-packed papers of biscuits, which, first having swept clean a spot on the sanded floor, he deposited there for honest Master Prince's refection; and then the old gentleman resumed the newspaper. The luncheon was soon over; and the gaiete de cttur of Prince returned, but he as speedily resumed the proper degree of respect for self and company, and straightway wore as much gravity in his looks, as if he had, in his better days, held the onerous office of deputy of the dogs of Dowgate. I noticed that Prince had a trick of tucking up one leg, and running about on the other three, and this brought up a story from the old gentleman, which I shall relate, as it was short, and had some point. .#
"My dog, sir," said he, " often reminds me of my old acquaintance Jack Simpson. It was said of Jack Simpson,—but stay, I had better first relate how what was said of him came to be said; it is not a bad joke, sir. Jack, when I first knew him—let me see, that was in seventeen-sixty, not a yesterday recollection, sir!"
I stared at the antiquity of the reminiscence.
"Yes, it was in seventeen-sixty. Jack Simpson was then a blood of the first pretensions, as far as broad skirts and breeding went—the 'Ladies' Man' at the Hackney Assembly, a fashionable thing, eir, in that day; first butterfly at Tunbridge Wells, and second only at Bath; an undisputed man of pleasure and of the world; gay, full of unfeigned good humour, having wit enough for men, address and a handsome person for women, and spirit sufficient for all occasions. His fortune was but small, and this gay life of his, you may be sure, made it less. In no long time he began to find out that a spendthrift'? purse does not always keep pace with the demands on it; and so he took dinners instead of giving them, and became of Sheridan's opinion, ' that the best wine is certainly our friend's.' Now what, in heaven's name, sir, had a man of Jack's fortune and folly to do