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aud he took it up and hastily examined it.
fixed for Sunday-but the necessity of the case appeared to warrant ithe repaired to the magnificent minster, where the evening prayers were being read, and where were Mrs Aubrey and Kate. They were chanting the prayers as he entered, and was placed in a stall nearly opposite to where those whom he loved so fondly were standing. The psalms allotted for the evening were those in which the royal sufferer, David, was pouring forth the deepest sorrows of his heart; and their appropriateness to his own state of mind, added to the effect produced by the melting melody in which they were conveyed to his ears, excited in him, and he perceived also, in those opposite, the deepest emotion. The glorious pile was beginning to grow dusky with the stealing shadows of evening; and the solemn and sublime strains of the organ, during the playing of the anthem, filled the minds of all present who had any pretensions to sensibility, with mingled feelings of tenderness and awe. Those in whom we are so deeply interested, felt their minds at once subdued and elevated; and as they quitted the darkening fabric through which the pealing tones of the organ were yet reverberating, they could not help inquiring, Should they ever enter it again, and in what altered circumstances might it be?
To return, however, though it is, indeed, like descending from the holy mountain into the bustle and hubbub of the city at its foot-Mr Parkinson, being most unexpectedly and unfortunately summoned to Grilston that afternoon, in order to send up some deeds of one of his distinguished clients to London, for the purpose of immediately effecting a mortgage, set off in a post-chaise, at top speed, in a very unenviable frame of mind; and by seven o'clock was seated in his office at Grilston, busily turning over a great number of deeds and papers, in a large tin-case, with the words "Right Honourable the Earl of Yelverton," painted on the outside. Hav. ing turned over almost every thing inside, and found all that he wanted, he was going to toss back again all the deeds which were not requisite for his immediate purpose, when he happened to see one lying at the very bottom, which he had not before observed. It was not a large, but an old deed
We have seen a piece of unexpected good fortune on the part of Gammon and his client; and the reader will not be disappointed at finding something of a similar kind befalling Mr Aubrey, even at the eleventh hour. Mr Parkinson's journey, which he had execrated a hundred times over as he came down, produced a discovery which made him tremble all over with agitation and excitement, and begin to look upon it as almost owing to an interference of Providence. The deed he looked at bore an endorsement of the name of "Dreddlington." After a hasty glance over its contents, he tried to recollect by what accident a document, belonging to Mr Aubrey, could have found its way into the box containing Lord Yelverton's deeds; and it at length occurred to him that, about a twelvemonth before, Mr Aubrey had proposed advancing several thousand pounds to Lord Yelverton, on mortgage of a portion of his lordship's property-but which negotiation had afterwards been broken off; that Mr Aubrey's title-deeds happened to be at the same time open and loose in his office and he recollected having considerable trouble in separating the respective documents which had got mixed together. This one, after all, had been, by some accident, overlooked, till it turned up in this most timely and extraordinary manner! Having hastily effected the object which had brought him back to Grilston, he ordered a post-chaise and four, and within a quarter of an hour was thundering back, at top speed, on his way to York, which, the horses reeking and foaming, he reached a little after ten o'clock. He jumped out, with the precious deed in his pocket, the instant that his chaise-door was opened, and ran off, without saying more than"I'm gone to the Attorney-General's.' This was heard by many passers-by and persons standing round; and it spread far and wide that something of the utmost importance had transpired, with reference to the great ejectment cause of Mr Aubrey. Soon afterwards, messengers and clerks, belonging to Mr Runnington and Mr Parkinson, were to be seen running to and fro, summoning Mr Sterling, Mr Crystal, Mr Mansfield, and also Mr Aubrey, to a second consultation at the
Attorney-General's. About eleven o'clock they were all assembled. The deed which had occasioned all his excitement, was one calculated indeed to produce that effect; and it filled the minds of all present with astonishment and delight. In a word, it was a deed of confirmation by old Dreddlington, the father of Harry Dreddlington, of the conveyance by the latter to Geoffry Dreddlington, who, in the manner already mentioned to the reader, had got an assignment of that conveyance to himself. After the Attorney-General had satisfied himself as to the account to be given of the deed the custody from whence it came, namely, the attorney for the defendant; Mr Parkinson undertaking, to swear, without any hesitation, that whatever deeds of Mr Aubrey's he possessed, he had taken from the muniment-room at Yatton, the second consultation broke up. Mr Aubrey, on hearing the nature and effect of the instrument explained by the Attorney. General and Mr Mansfield, and all his counsel, in short, concurring in opinion as to the triumphant effect which this instrument would produce on the morrow, may be pardoned for regarding it, in the excitement of the moment, as almost a direct interference of Providence.
A few minutes before nine o'clock on the ensuing morning, the occasional shrill blasts of the trumpets announced that the judges were on their way to the castle, the approaches to which were crowded with carriages and pedestrians of a highly respectable appearance. As the castle clock finished striking nine, Lord Widdrington took his seat, and the swearing of the special jury commenced. The court was crowded almost to suffocation; all the chief places being filled with persons of distinction in the county. The benches on each side of the judge were occupied by ladies, who-espe cially the Countess of Oldacre and Lady De la Zouch-evinced a painful degree of anxiety and excitement in their countenances and demeanour. The bar also mustered in great force; the crown court being quite deserted, although a great murder case was going on there. The civil court was, on the present occasion, the point of attraction, not only on account of the interesting nature of the case to be tried, but of the keen contest that was
expected between the Attorney-General and Mr Subtle. The former, as he entered,—his commanding features gazed at by many an anxious eye with hope, and a feeling that on his skill and learning depended that day the destination of the Yatton property,bowed to the judge, and then nodded and shook hands with several of the counsel nearest to him; then he sat down, and opening his bag, took out his huge brief, and began turning over its leaves with a calm and attentive air, occasionally turning round and conversing with his juniors. Every one present observed that the defendant's counsel and attorneys wore the confident looks of winning men; while their opponents, quick-sighted enough, also observed the circumstance, and looked, on that account alone, a shade more anxious than when they had entered the court. Mr Subtle requested Gammon, whose ability he had soon detected, to sit immediately beneath him; next to Gammon sat Quirk, then Snap, and beside him, Mr Titmouse, with a staring sky-blue flowered silk handkerchief round his neck, a gaudy waistcoat, a tight surtout, and white kid gloves. He looked exceedingly pale, and dared hardly interchange a word with even Snap, who was just as irritable and excited as his senior partners. It was quickly known all over the court who Titmouse was. Mr Aubrey scarcely shewed himself in court all day, though he stood at the door near the bench, and could hear all that passed; Lord De la Zouch and one or two other personal friends standing with him, engaged, from time to time, in anxious conversation. The jury having been sworn, Mr Lynx rose, and in a few hurried sentences, intimated the nature of the pleadings in the cause. The Attorney-General then rose, and requested that all the witnesses might leave the court. As soon as the little disturbance occasioned by this move had ceased, Mr Subtle, rose, and in a low but distinct tone, said, " May it please your Lordship -Gentlemen of the Jury,-In this cause I have the honour to appear before you as counsel for the plaintiff; and it now becomes my duty to state, as briefly as I can, the nature of his case. It is impossible, gentlemen, not to notice the unusual interest excited by the cause; and which may be
accounted for by the very large estates in this county which are sought this day to be transferred to a comparative stranger, from the family who have long enjoyed them, and of whom I am anxious to say every thing respectful: for you will very soon find that the name on the record is that of only the nominal defendant; and although all that is professed to be this day sought for, is a very trifling portion of the property, your verdict will undoubtedly decide the question as to the true ownership and enjoyment of the large estates now held by the gentleman who is the substantial defendant-I mean Mr Aubrey, the member of Parliament for the borough of Yatton." Aware of the watchful and formidable opponent who would in due time an swer him, and also of being himself entitled to the general reply-to the last word-Mr Subtle proceeded to state the nature of the plaintiff's case with the utmost brevity and clearness. Scarcely any sound was heard but that of the pens of the short-hand writers, and of the counsel taking their notes. Mr Subtle, having handed up two or three copies of the pedigree which he held in his hand to the judge and jury, pointed out with distinctness and precision every link in the chain of evidence which he intended to lay before the jury; and having done this having presented as few salient points of attack to his opponent as he possibly could he sat down, professing his entire ignorance of what case could be set up in answer to that which he had opened. He had not been on his legs quite half an hour; and when he ceased-how he had disappointed every one present, except the judge and the bar! Instead of a speech befitting so great an occasion -impressive and eloquent-here had been a brief dry statement of a few uninteresting facts dates, births, deaths, marriages-without a single touch of feeling or ray of eloquence. The momentary feeling of disappointment in the audience, however-almost all of whom, it may easily be believed, were in the interest of the Aubreys-quickly yielded to one of satisfaction and relief; as they thought they might regard so meagre a speech - as heralding in as meagre a case. As soon as he had sat down, Mr Quicksilver rose and called the first wit
"We're safe!" whispered the Attorney-General to Mr Sterling and Mr Crystal; and the witness having been sworn they resumed their seats and their writing. He and the subsequent one established one or two preliminary and formal points-the Attorney-General scarcely rising to put a question to them. The third witness was examined by Mr Subtle with apparent unconcern, but really with exquisite anxiety, From the earnestness and attention with which the words of the witness were watched and taken down by both the judge and the counsel, who knew much better than the audience where the strain of the case commenced, it must have appeared to the latter, that either Mr Subtle under-estimated, or his opponents over-estimated, the value of the evidence now in process of being extracted by Mr Subtle, in short, easy, pointed questions, and with a smiling
"Not so fast, sir," gruffly interposed Lord Widdrington, addressing the witness.
"Take time, Mr Jones," said Mr Subtle, blandly, fearful of ruffling or discomposing an important witness. The Attorney-General rose to crossexamine; he pressed him quietly but closely; varied the shape of his questions; now he soothed, then he flattered; but sat down, evidently having produced no impression. Thus it was with one or two succeeding witnesses; the Attorney-General, on each occasion, resuming his seat after his abortive efforts with perfect com. posure. At length, however, by a very admirable and well-sustained fire of cross-questioning, he completely demolished a material witness; and the hopes of all interested in behalf of his clients rose high. Mr Subtle, who had been all the while paring his nails, and from time to time smiling with a careless air, (though you might as safely have touched a tigress suckling her cubs, as attempted at that moment to disturb Mr Subtle, so absorbed was he with intense anxiety,) knowing that he could establish the same facts by another and, as he believed, a better witness, did not re-examine; but calling that other, with an air of nonchalance, succeeded in ex. tracting from him all that the other had failed in, and in baffling all the
attempts of the Attorney-General to affect his credit, or disturb his equanimity. At length, another witness being in the box,—
"My Lord, I object to that question," said Mr Attorney-General, as Mr Subtle, amidst many indifferent and apparently irrelevant questions, quietly slipped in one of the greatest possible importance, had it been answered as he desired. 'Twas quite delightful to see the Attorney-General and his experienced and watchful ju. niors, all rise at one and the same instant; showing how vain were the tricks and ingenuity of their sly opponent. Mr Attorney-General stated his objection, briefly and pointedly; Mr Subtle answered him, followed by Quicksilver and Lynx; and then Mr Attorney-General replied, with great force and clearness. This keen encounter of their wits over
"I shall allow the question to be put," said Lord Widdrington, after a pause "But I have great doubts as to its propriety. I will therefore take a note of Mr Attorney-General's objection."
Four or five similar conflicts arose during the course of the plaintiff's case; now concerning the competency of a witness-then as to the admissibility of a document, or the propriety of a particular question. On each of these occasions there were displayed on both sides consummate logical skill and acuteness, especially by the two leaders. Distinctions the most delicate were suggested with suddenness, and as promptly encountered; the most artful manœuvres to secure dangerous admissions resorted to, and baffled; the more recondite principles of evidence brought to bear with admirable readiness on both sides. To deal with them, required indeed the practised, penetrating, and powerful intellect of Lord Widdrington. Some points he disposed of promptly, to the satisfaction of both parties; on others he hesitated, and at length reserved them. Though none but the more experienced and able members of the bar could in the least degree enter into and appreciate the nature of these conflicts, they were watched with untiring attention and eagerness by all present, both ladies and gentlemen-by the lowly and the distinguished. And though the intensity of the feelings of
all was manifest by a mere glimpse round the court, yet any momentary display of eccentricity on the part of a witness, or petulance or repartee on the part of counsel, would occasion a momentary merriment that really served only as a sort of relief to the strained feelings, and instantly disappeared. The tomb-stone part of the case was got through easily; scarce any attempt being made on the part of Mr Aubrey's counsel, to resist or interfere with it. But the great—the hottest part of the fight-occurred at that point of the case, where Titmouse's descent from Stephen Dreddlington was sought to be established. This gentleman, who had been a very wild person, whose movements were very difficult to be traced or accounted for, had entered the navy, and ultimately died at sea, as had always been imagined, single and childless. It was proved, however, that so far from such being the case, he had married a person at Portsmouth, of inferior station; and that by her he had a daughter, only two years before his death, which happened at sea, as has been stated. Both mother and daughter, after undergoing great privation, and no notice being taken of the mother by any of her late husband's family, removed to the house of a humble and distant relative, in Cumberland, and afterwards died, leaving her daughter only fifteen years old. When she grew up, she lived in some menial capacity at Cumberland, and ultimately married one Gabriel Tittlebat Titmouse; who, after living for some years a cordwainer at Whitehaven, found his way to Grilston, in Yorkshire, in the neighbourhood of which town he had lived for some years, in very humble circumstances. There he had married; and about two years afterwards his wife died, leaving a sonour friend Tittlebat Titmouse. Both of them afterwards came to London; where, in four or five years' time, the father died, leaving the little Titmouse to flutter and hop about in the wide world as best he could. The little documentary evidence of which Gammon, at his first interview with Titmouse, found him possessed, proved, at the trial, as Gammon had foreseen, of essential importance. The evidence in support of this part of the case, and which it took till two o'clock on the
ensuing afternoon to get through, was subjected to a most determined and skilful opposition by the Attorney General, but in vain. The case had been got up with the utmost care, under the excellent management of Lynx; and Mr Subtle's consummate tact and ability brought it, at length, fully and distinctly out before the jury.
"That, my lord," said he, as he sat down after re-examining his last witness, "is the case on the part of the plaintiff." On this the judge and jury withdrew, for a short time, to obtain refreshments. During their absence, the Attorney-General, Mr Sterling, Mr Crystal, and Mr Mansfield, might have been seen, with their heads all laid close together, engaged in anxious consultation—a group gazed at by the eager eyes of many a spectator whose beating heart wished their cause godspeed. The Attorney-General then withdrew for a few moments, also to seek refreshments; and returning at the same time with the judge, after a moment's pause, rose and opened the defendant's case. His manner was calm and impressive; his person was dignified; and his clear, distinct voice fell on the listening ear like the sound of silver. After an exceedingly graceful and simple allusion to the distinguished character of his friend and client, Mr Aubrey, to whose eminent position in the House of Commons he bore his personal testimony, and the magnitude of the interests now at stake, he proceeded" On every account, therefore, I feel sensible, gentlemen, to an unusual and most painful extent, of the very great responsibility now resting upon my learned friends and myself; lest any miscarriage of mine should prejudice in any degree the important interests committed to us, or impair the strength of the case which I am about to submit to you on the part of Mr Aubrey: a case which, I assure you, unless some extraordinary mischance should befall us, will I believe annihilate that which, with so much pains and ability, has just been laid before you by my learned friend Mr Subtle, and establish the defendant in the safe possession of that large property which is the subject of the present most unexpected litigation. But, gentlemen, before proceeding so far as that, it is fitting that I should call your attention to the nature of the case set
up on the part of the plaintiff, and the sort of evidence by which it has been attempted to be supported; and I am very sanguine of success, in showing you that the plaintiff's witnesses are not entitled to the credit to which they lay claim; and, consequently, that there is no case made out for the defendant to answer." He then entered into a rigorous analysis of the plaintiff's evidence, contrasting each conflicting portion with the other, with singular force and cogency; and commenting with powerful severity upon the demeanour and character of many of the witnesses. On proceeding, at length, to open the case of the defendant-" And here, gentlemen," said he, "I am reminded of the observation with which my learned friend concluded that he was entirely ignorant of the case which I meant to set up in answer to that which he had opened on the part of the plaintiff. Gentlemen, it would have been curious, indeed, had it had been otherwise-had my friend's penetrating eye been able to inspect the contents of our strongbox-and so become acquainted with the evidence on which my client rests his title to the property. He has, however, succeeded in entitling himself to information on that point; and he shall have it-and to his heart's content." Here Mr Subtle cast a glance of smiling incredulity towards the jury, and defiance towards the Attorney-General: he took his pen into his hand, however, and his juniors looked very anxious. "Gentlemen, I will now concede to him every inch of the case which he has been endeavouring to make out; that he has completely established his pedigree.Mind, gentlemen, I concede this only for the purpose of the case which I am about to lay before you." He then mentioned the conveyance by Harry Dreddlington of all his interests' "You forget that he died in his father's lifetime, Mr Attorney-General,” interposed Mr Subtle, with a placid smile, and the air of a man who is suddenly relieved from a vast pressure of anxiety.
"Not a bit of it, gentlemen, not a bit of it 'tis a part of my case. My learned friend is quite right; Harry Dreddlington did die in his father's lifetime :-but-" Here Mr Subtle gazed at the Attorney-General with unaffected curiosity; and, when the