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I sometimes passed hours in study- excitement roused me into someing a move, whilst my antagonist thing akin to actual enjoyment. sat with the patience of a hundred We exchanged shots without effect; Jobs waiting for my decision and I apologized, and so the affair endcogitating his own. In process of ed. I invited him to renew our time I had a perfect chess-board game, but he shook his head, and delineated on my sensorium, and good-humoredly observed that, completely lost the tedium of too much as he loved chess, he feared much leisure in playing games as I broken heads and bullets more. walked the streets, or sat smoking The story took wind, nobody would a cigar in my easy chair. Nay, I venture to play chess with me after sometimes played games in my this, and thus I lost my main chance sleep, which, if I could only re- for killing time. member them, would shame a Phi- 6. Too much care will turn lidor. While I considered myself young man gray,” as the old song a mere scholar, I suffered myself to says, and too little is as bad as too be beaten with perfect docility ; but, much. For want of something else

. in process of time, as I began to to think about, I began to think fancy myself a proficient, and my wholly of myself. I grew to be exwhole soul was absorbed in the ceedingly tenacious of my health, game, I did not bear a heating my accommodations, my raiment, with so much philosophy. I began and my food. I ate much, walked to be testy, and to revive my old little, slept enormously, and got the doctrine of chances, insisting upon dyspepsia. Having nothing to love, it that chance governed this as to call forth my affections, or to well as every other game. My excite my ardent hopes and fears, master bore all this good-humor- I concentred them all upon myself. edly, and, even when I grew at The object of our exclusive love is length so irritable as not to bear a ever the focus of all our solicitudes, defeat, he would slily get up, open and never fails to call up fears, the door, and retire on the outside, whether real or imaginary. I had before he cried check-mate, for fear now reached the high hill of life, I should throw the chess-board at and was beginning to descend. The his head. It is inconceivable what little changes of feeling, the slight trifles will overcome a man who stiffness of the joints, the impaired has no serious business in this activity of the limbs, and the waning world. It happened one hot sum- vivacity of the whole system, which mer day, we got warmly engaged at mark this epoch in the life of man, a game, and had locked ourselves struck me with dismay. I had up, that we might remain undis- nothing else for my mind to prey turbed. It lasted eight mortal hours, upon, and it fed upon that with the at the end of which my antago- avidity of a diseased appetite. I nist treacherously drew me into a consulted a doctor, and that did my stale mate, when I actually had the business. A dose will convince à game in my power. Unfortunately man he is sick, if he only imagined his retreat was cut off by the door it before. No physician, who knows being locked ; the consequence his business, will take a fee, withwas, that I discharged the chess- out giving a prescription in exboard, men, castles, elephants, and change ; for a good workman knows all, at his head, with so unlucky an how to make business. However, aim that it checkmated him flat on mine turned out a pretty honest the floor. The result of this great fellow. Finding, after a twelvemove was a duel, which I honestly month, that I complained worse confess was one of the pleasantest than ever, he advised me to take events of my life. I had something exercise, eat sparingly, and ride a to do and something to fear, and the hard-trotting horse.

1 A hard-trot

ting horse !” exclaimed I in inex- mortified my pride ; it roused my pressible horror, “ I'd as soon ride anger; it inflamed my vanity-in a race through the city of Gotham.” short, it created a turmoil, a com“ Very well, then get married ; plete bouleversement in my system; there is nothing like real evils to the atoms were set in inotion, the banish imaginary ones, and matri- waters had broken loose, nature mony is a sovereign cure.” “ The was convulsed, and subsided into a remedy is worse than the disease," newly-constituted world. I started replied I, and left him in condign up with a degree of energy undespair.

known for many a year ; 1 paced

I The horrors of a life of perfect the room with unnatural activity, ease now crowded thickly upon me, and asked myself if it were possible and I became the most miserable of that I had passed forty years of my all miserable men, that have nothing life without quite living ; that I had to trouble them. I grew fat, le- been thus far a burden to myself, thargic, and was teased with a per- useless to the world, and an object petual desire to eat. I ate till eat- of laughter to my companions. The ing became a burden ; and slept struggle was a painful one, and put till sleep was little better than a me into a fine perspiration-but I nightmare, bringing all the horrors felt all the better for it

. That night of indigestion in her train. I rolled I had something to think of besides from side to side, I tried to find a my aches and infirmities, and the soft place in the bed, I rubbed my night-mare eschewed my couch. I feet and hands together to restore made up my mind to begin the the circulation of my blood, and world anew, and, falling fast asleep, tried to think about something to did not awake till the broad beams relieve my mind from vague and of morning darted into my windows. undefinable horrors. But what can I made an unheard-of effort, and, a man think about, who has nothing getting up, dressed myself, and was to trouble him but himself ? I be- actually down stairs before breakcame at last unwilling, or more fast was over-whereupon they pretruly, afraid, to go to bed, lest I dicted an earthquake. should be hag-ridden, and quarreled From this day I resolved to do with my fellow boarders, who, hav- something and be useful. “I'll let ing something to do by day, could them see," quoth I, “I can quite not afford to sit up with me all live as well as other people. I will night. The consequence of this qualify myself to defend my counloss of rest was that, when I sat try; there is a speck of war in the still a few minutes during the day, horizon, and every citizen ought to I was sure to fall asleep in my be prepared.” I'enrolled myself in chair. It was one warm summer a volunteer corps, the captain of day, the crisis of my fate, when, which, having a mistress in a distant having taken a huge walk of half a part of the town, always marched mile to see a picture of Leslie's, I us home that way after every turnreturned overwhelmed with lassi- out, which was every day. The tude, and fell asleep in my chair : reader may possibly form some rewhen I awoke, I found a piece of mote conception of what I underpaper pinned to my sleeve, on went in the service of my country, which I read the following lines, though he can never realize the They say Tom is dead, but the truth I deny, extent of my sufferings. Conceive

So cease all his friends to be grieved ; the idea of a man of ny habits carHow can it be said that a man can quite die,

rying a musket of fourteen pounds Who ne'er in his life has quite lived ?

three hours before breakfast, and I never knew who played me this marching through thick and thin, trick, but I shall ever feel grateful mud, diri, and glory, three miles to 'for the lesson, severe as it was.

It pass muster before Dulcinea's win

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dows. I felt inclined to mutiny, ened-I at the thought of gaining and certainly broke the articles of trouble, and he of losing profit. war ten times a day, by privately Finding me, however, peremptory, wishing my captain and his mistress he in a few days presented me as well married as any couple could with a statement of his accounts, possibly be. But the recollection which exhibited a balance against of the man that never in his life had me of a couple of thousands. quite lived caused me to swear, on puzzled me how this could be ; but the altar of patriotism, that I would it would have puzzled me ten thoucarry arms till the speck of war sand times more to find out. I was removed, though I plunged up thought of applying to some expeto the middle in mud before the rienced friend to examine into the windows of the beautiful damsel. affair ; but I had no such friend, I continued, therefore, to trudge and to trust to a stranger was to inright gallantly up one street and cur the risk of still greater imposidown another, with my musket, tions. Accordingly, I paid the that seemed like the world on the money, glad to get off so well, and shoulders of Atlas, solacing myself resolved hereafter to trust only to by privately cursing the captain for myself, even though I should be leading us every day such a dance. cheated every day. Fatigue and vexation combined, No one knows the trouble I had however, worked a surprising effect from misunderstanding my affairs, upon me; I could sleep comfortably or the losses I sustained in conseat night, I felt no inclination to quence of my utter ignorance of sleep in the day, I enjoyed my din- the most common transactions of ner with wonderful gusto, and be- business, and the inevitable suspigan to hold the nightmare, the blue cions consequent upon it. I did devils, and the dyspepsia, in defi- not know what to do with my money,

In process of time the speck or how to invest it securely, and beof war disappeared from the horizon. gan seriously to contemplate buying Our company

laid down its arms, an iron chest, and hoarding in imiand I was in great danger of back- tation of my father. However, I sliding, having declined an invita- blundered on, daily diminishing my tion to become a corporal of artil- property by mismanagement, and lery ; but whenever I found myself fretting over my losses ; but all this relapsing into my old habits, I un- time I was consoled, by the gradual locked my secretary, took out the improvement of my health and spimischievous epigram, and felt my- rits. My thoughts ceased, by deself inspired to mind my own busi- grees, to prey upon myself, and ness, ride a hard-trotting horse, get were drawn off to my affairs. I married, or any other deed of became busy, brisk, and lively. I daring.

defied the nightmare and all her I determined to take the manage- works. I began to relish ease at ment of my property into my own proper intervals, and, in spite of all hands, and attend to my own affairs, the troubles and vexations of busiwhich I had hitherto entrusted to ness, I was ten times better off than the management of a man who had, when I had nothing on the face of I believe, been pretty reasonable in the earth to trouble me—but mynot cheating me out of more than self, I began to comprehend the was sufficient to provide for himself possibility of a man, without any and his family. I went to him, and thing to vex him, being the most desired a statement of my accounts, miserable creature upon earth. with a degree of trepidation that Cheered by this unexpected regave me the heart-burn. The man sult of a little salutary worldly vexlooked at me with equal dismay. ation, I went on with renewed zeal, Never were two people more fright- and took courage to add to a little



troubling of the spirit a little shak- the freezing point. My health daiing of the body. I actually purchas- ly improved-my spirits expanded ed a horse, and trotted valiantly their wings, and fluttered like birds among the dandy equestrians, very released from their iron cages-and little at first to the recreation of my nerves were actually braced up mind or body ; for nothing could to the trial of looking a woman full equal the aching of my bones but in the face, an enormity I was never the mortification of my spirit, in see- capable of before. Between my ing, as I fancied, everybody laugh- vexations in managing my business, ing at my riding. I should have and my rides on horseback, I was a observed, that it was this natural new man, and had an idea of proshyness, which formed a part of my posing my horse as a member of the character, that always stood in the College of Physicians, had I not way of my exertions. It kept me apprehended that they might think from going into company, from the I was joking. never-to-be-forgotten night, when, Still there were intervals in which being seduced into a tea-party, I got my old infirmity of sitting becalmwell nigh roasted alive, for want of ed at home, doing nothing, and sufficient intrepidity to change my nursing blue devils, would come position by crossing the room. It over me like a spider's web, and prevented my taking refuge in the condemn me to my chair, as if by excitement of dress; for I never enchantment. These relapses were put on a new coat that I did not terrible, and discouraged me befeel as if I had got into a straight yond measure, for I began to fear waistcoat, and kept clear of all my that I never should be radically acquaintances, lest they should cured. Sitting thus stupified, one think I wanted to exhibit my finery. summer evening, I was startled by In short, I was too bashful for a a smart slan on my shoulder, and a beau, too timid for a gambler, too hearty exclamation of, “What, Tom, proud for a politician, and thus I es- at your old tricks—hey !-giving caped the temptations of the town, audience to the blues.” This was more from a peculiarity of disposi- spoken by a merry, careless fellow, tion than from precept or example. who was always full of what the

I think I have somewhere read— world calls troubles, and who, eveor perhaps only dreamed—that the rybody said, was to be pitied, bepride of man waxed exceeding cause he had a wife and twelve great, from the moment that he had children, and was not worth a groat. subjected the horse to his domin- But he belied the world and his ion. It certainly is a triumph to destiny to boot, was always as busy sit on such a noble animal, tamed as a bee by day, and as merry as a perfectly to our will, and to govern lark in the evening, and the more his gigantic strength and fiery met- children he had the blither was he. tle with silken rein, or a whispered Nature had decreed he should be a aspiration. It strengthens the nerves happy man, and fortune had co-opeand emboldens the spirits, at least rated with her in making him poor. it did mine. By degrees, as I “Come," said he, “ what are you began to be accustomed to the sad- sitting here for, biting your lips, dle, the pains in my bones subsid- and eating up your own soul-for ed, and, feeling myself easy, I no want of something else ? Why don't longer suspected people of laugh- you sally out somewhere, and do ing at my awkwardness. In the something ?” warm season I was out in the coun- “ What can I do and where try to see the sun rise, and in the shall I go ?-I know nobody abroad winter I galloped in the very teeth - and have no ties at home-no of the north-west wind, till I defied fire-side to cheer me of evenings.” Jack Frost, and snapt my fingers at

“Why, become either a beau


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bachelor, or get married at once, And


have been married which is better."

thirteen years ?“ Married ! pshaw."

“Yes, and have twelve children, “Ay, married--if your wife turns yet I can talk of love—ay, and feel out a scold, that is all you want. it too. Come, I have a little party You then will have a motive for at home this evening ; come—see going abroad. If she is amiable, and be conquered." that is still better—then you will “Well,” said I, starting up, have a motive for staying at home.” “ wait till I make myself a little

“Faith, there is something in amiable." that.”

“No-no-I know you of old. “Something - It is wisdom in a If you once have time to consider nutshell. There's more philoso- you 'll get becalmed as sure as a phy in it than in three hundred fo- gun. Now or never—this is the lios."

crisis of your fate.” “Well, if I thought-"

Riding on horseback had made “ Thought! never think of it at me bold, and I suffered myself to all-you have been all your life be carried off to the party by my thinking to no purpose--it is time merry friend ; who predicted fifty for you to act now. Haven't I prov- times by the way, that I should be ed that you must be a gainer either married in less than three weeks.

It was fortunate the distance was “Well, well-I believe—I think small, or my courage would have -I'll think of it."

served me as it did Bob Acres, and " Think of a fiddlestick. Do « oozed out of the palms of my you think a man is the better pre- hands,” before we arrived. My pared for a cold bath, by standing friend hurried me on, talking all the hour shivering on


way, without giving me time to brink! No-no--fall in love ex- think, so that I was in the middle tempore ; you have no time to study of his little drawing-room before characters—and if you had, do you I could collect sufficient courage to think a man is the wiser for study- run away. I made my bow to the ing a riddle he is destined never to lady, sat down as far as I could find out ? Mark what the poet from all the females in the room, and says."

felt-nobody can describe what a « What poet ?”

bashful man feels in such a situa“Hang me if I know, or care, tion. I fancied every laugh levelbut he sings directly to my purpose, ed directly at me, and, because I and is therefore a sensible fellow. felt strange myself, believed that

List-list-0 list,' as the tailor everybody considered me a stransaid.

ger. Luckily there was no fire in the

room, or I should have undergone
Love is no child of time, unless it be a second roasting ; for I am of opin-
The offspring of a moment-0, true love
Requires no blowing of the lingering spark

ion, if an earthquake had happened,
To light it to a wild consuming flame. I could not have found the use of
To linger on through years of sighing dolours, my legs sufficiently to run out of
To write, to reason, to persuade, to worry,
Some cold heart into something like an ague-

the room, unless it had previously An icy shivering fit- this is not love; been deserted by the awful assem'Tis habit, friendship, such as that we feel blage. The recollection of this For some old tree because we've known it horrible probation, even at this dis

No, this is but to put the heart at nurse, tance of time, makes me shudder.
Or send it like a lazy school-boy forth Had I an enemy in the world, which
Unwillingly to learn his A BC,
Under some greybeard, flogging pedagogue,

Į hope I have not, all the harm I
Time's office is to throw cold water on,

wish him would be to be cursed Not feed the flame with oil."

with that sensitive bashfulness, the

half an

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