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Eu. Let him try once again then, and take hold. B. Take hold once more. Eu. We're ready. B. Now repeat. Eu. “Speech is the temple and altar of persuasion.” AEs. “Death is a god that loves no sacrifice.” B. Let go!—See there again! This scale sinks down; No wonder that it should, with Death put into it, The heaviest of all calamities. Eu. But I put in persuasion, finely express'd In the best terms. B. Perhaps so; but persuasion Is soft and light and silly— Think of something That's heavy and huge to outweigh him, something solid. Eu. Let's see— Where have I got it? Something solid? B. “Achilles has thrown twice— Twice a deuce ace l’” Come, now, one trial more; this is the last. Eu. “He grasp'd a mighty mace of massy weight.” AEs. “Cars upon cars, and corpses heap'd pell mell.” B. He has nick'd you again— Eu. Why so? What has he done? B. He has heap'd ye up cars and corpses, such a load As twenty Egyptian laborers could not carry— AEs. Come, no more single lines—let him bring all, His wife, his children, his Cephisophon, His books, and everything, himself to boot— I'll counterpoise them with a couple of lines. B. Well, they're both friends of mine—I sha'n't decide To get myself ill-will from either party; One of them seems extraordinary clever, And the other suits my taste particularly. Pluto. Won't you decide then, and conclude the business 2 B. Suppose then I decide; what then? P. Then take him Away with you, whichever you prefer, As a present for your pains in coming down here. B. Heaven bless ye— Well—let's see now?—Can't ye advise me?
This is the case—I'm come in search of a poet—
P. With what design?,
B. With this design; to see
The city again restored to peace and wealth,
Exhibiting tragedies in a proper style.
—Therefore whichever gives the best advice
On public matters, I shall take him with
me. –First then of Alcibiades, what think ye? The city is in hard labor with the question. Eu. What are her sentiments towards him? B. What? “She loves and she detests and longs to have him.” But tell me, both of you, your own opinions. Eu. (Euripides and Æschylus speak each in his own tragical style.) I hate the man that in his country's service Is slow, but ready and quick to work her harm; Unserviceable, except to serve himself. B. Well said, by Jovel—Now you–Give us a Sentence. AEs. 'Tis rash and idle policy to foster A lion's whelp within the city walls, But when he's rear'd and grown you must indulge him. B. By Jove, then, I’m quite puzzled; one of them Has answer'd clearly, and the other sensibly: But give us both of ye one more opinion; —What means are left of safety for the state 7 Eu. To tack Cinesias, like a pair of wings, To Cleocritus's shoulders, and dispatch them From a precipice to sail across the seas. B. It seems a joke; but there's some sense in it. Eu. . . . Then being both equipt with little cruets, They might co-operate in a naval action, By sprinkling vinegar in the enemies' eyes. —But I can tell you and will. B. Speak and explain then. Eu. If we mistrust where present trust is plac'd, Trusting in what was heretofore mistrusted— B. How ! What? I’m at a loss— Speak it again,
Not quite so learnedly—more plainly and simply.
Eu. If we withdraw the confidence we plac'd
In these our present statesmen, and trans-
Fo And after such a villainous act, you
Happy is the man possessing
Let them hear and admire father Æschylus still In his office of old which again he must fill' —You must guide and direct them, Instruct and correct them, With a lesson in verse, For you’ll find them much worse; Greater fools than before, and their folly much more, And more numerous far than the blockheads of yore— —And give Cleophon this, And bid him not miss, But be sure to attend To the summons I send; To Nichomacus too And the rest of the crew That devise and invent New taxes and tribute Are summons's sent Which you'll mind to distribute. Bid them come to their graves, Or, like runaway slaves, If they linger and fail, We shall drag them to jail; Down here in the dark With a brand and a mark. AEs. I shall do as you say; But the while I’m away, Let the seat that I held, Be by Sophocles fill'd, As deservedly reckon'd My pupil and second In learning and merit And tragical spirit— —And take special care; Keep that reprobate there Far aloof from the Chair; Let him never sit in it An hour or a minute, By chance or design To profane what was mine. P. Bring forward the torches—The Chorus shall wait And attend on the poet in triumph and State With a thundering chant of majestical tone To wish him farewell, with a tune of his own. ARistophan Es.
STORY OF A NEW HAT.
A business man had purchased a new stiff hat, and he went into a saloon with half a dozen friends to fit the hat on his
head. They all took beer and passed the hat around so all could see it. One of the meanest men that ever, held a county office went to the bartender and had a thin slice of Limburger cheese cut off, and when the party were looking at the frescoed ceiling through their beer glasses, the wicked person slipped the cheese under the sweat-leather of the hat, and the man put it on and walked out. The man who owned the hat is one of your nervous people who is always complaining of being sick, and who feels as though some dreadful disease was going to take possession of him and carry him off. He went back to his place of business, took off his hat and laid it on the table, and proceeded to answer some letters. He thought he detected a smell, and when his partner asked him if he didn't feel sick, he believed he did. . He then turned pale, and said he guessed he would go home. He met a man on the sidewalk who said the air was full of miasma, and in the street car a man who sat next to him moved away to the end of the car, and asked him if he had just come from Chicago. The man with the hat said he had not, when the stranger said they were having a great deal of small-pox there and he guessed he would get out and walk, and he pulled the bell and jumped off. The cold perspiration broke out on the forehead of the man with the new hat, and he took it off to wipe his forehead, when the whole piece of cheese seemed to roll over and breathe, and the man got the full benefit of it, and he came near fainting away. He got home, and his wife met and asked him what was the matter. He said he believed mortification had set in, and she took one whiff as he took off his hat, and said that she should think it had. “Where did you get into it?” said she. “Get into it?” said the man. “I have not got into anything, but some deadly disease has got hold of me and I shall not live." She got his clothes off, soaked his feet in mustard water, and he slept. The hat was lying on the centre-table, and the children would come in and get a smell of it and look at each other with reproachful glances, and go out and play. The man slept and dreamed that a smallpox flag was hung in front of his house, and that he was riding in a butcher's wagon to the pest-house. The woman sent for a doctor, and when the man of pills arrived she told him all about the case. The doctor picked up the patient's new hat, tried it on, and got a sniff. He said the hat was picked before it was ripe. The doctor and #. wife held a post mortem examination of the hat and found the slice of Limburger. “Few and short were the prayers they said.” They woke the patient, and to prepare his mind for the revelation that was about to be made, the doctor asked him if his worldly affairs were arranged in a satisfactory condition. He gasped and said they were. The doctor asked him if he had made his will. He said that he had not, but he wanted a lawyer sent for at once. The doctor then asked him if he felt as though he was prepared to shuffle off. The man said he had always tried to lead a different life, and tried to be done by the same as he would do it himself, but that he might have made a mistake some way, and that he would like to have a minister sent for to take an account of the stock.
The doctor brought to the bedside the hat, opened up the sweat-leather, and showed the dying man what it was that smelled so, and told him he was as well as any man in the city. The man pinched himself to see if he was alive, and jumped out of bed and called for his revolver, and the doctor couldn't keep up with him on the way down town. The last we saw of the odoriferous citizen he was trying to bribe the bartender to tell him which one of those pelicans it was that put that slice of cheese in his hat lining.
THE LAWYER AND THE OYSTER.
Two comrades, as grave authors say, (But in what chapter, page, or line, Ye critics, if ye please, define)
Had found an oyster in their way.
Contest and foul debate arose,
And high words soon improved to blows.
Actions on actions hence succeed,
Pleadings are drawn, and Counsel feed.
GIL BLAS AND THE ARCHBISHOP.
[Alan René Le Saar, the famous romancist and dramatist, was born at Sarzeau, France, May 8th, 1668. He studied law and philosophy in Paris, but soon abandoned a professional career in order to devote himself to literature. His first pronounced literary success was the comedy, “Crispin Rival of his Master", (1707), and the same thus acquired was increased by “Asmodeus." His play “Turcaret," which exposed the iniquities of the revenue agents achieved a brilliant success; and it is said that he was offered one hundred thousand francs by members of the class whose misdeeds it exposed, on condition of his suppressing it. He, however, refused the bribe. Gil Blas, his next celebrated work, which was published in 1715, owes its rare success to the admirable and natural pictures of human life in all conditions and phases of which it is made up. It has been translo" d into all the languages of Europe. Le Sage was welcomed to the best social circles, and bore the reputation of a high-minded, honorable man.
Our selection is a noted passage from Gil Blas. The hero, having been suddenly thrown out of employment, journeys to Grenada, where he meets a friend whose aid he solicits in obtaining another situation. The friend heartily pledges his good offices; and how quickly he redeemed this pledge, let Gil Blas himself relate.]
AND indeed, at our very next meeting, he said, “The Archbishop of Grenada, my kinsman and friend, wants a youn man of letters, possessed of a good hand, to make fair copies of his writings; for he is a great author, has composed a vast number of homilies, and studies more every day, which he pronounces with applause. As I believe you are such an one as he wants, I proposed you to him, and he has o to take you into his service. Go and present yourself to him in my name; and you may judge by the reception which you shall receive, whether or not I have spoke in your behalf.”
This was just such a place as I desired: wherefore having dressed to the best advantage, in order to appear before that prelate, I repaired one morning to the archbishop's palace. Here, was I to imitate the authors of romance, I should give a pompous description of this episcopal palace of Grenada: I would enlarge upon the structure of the building, extol the richness of the furniture, describe the statues and pictures, and not spare the readers the least tittle of the stories the represented; but I shall content myself with observing, that it equalled the royal palace in magnificence.
I found in the apartments a crowd of ecclesiastics, and gentlemen of the sword, the greatest part whereof were the officers of his grace: his almoners, his gentlemen, his ushers, and valets de chambre. The laity were, almost all, so superbly dressed, that one would have taken them for noblemen rather than domesticks, by their haughty looks, and affectation of being men of consequence. While I beheld them, I could not help laughing, and ridiculing them within myself. “Egad, (said I,) these lo are very happy in bearing the yoke of servitude without feeling it; for, in short, if they felt it, I imagine that their behaviour would be less assuming.” Addressing myself to a raWe jo. personage, that stood at the oor of the archbishop's closet, in order to open and shut it when there was occasion: I asked civilly if I could not speak with his grace. “Wait (said he drily) till his grace comes out to go to mass, and he will give you a moment's audience in passing.” I armed myself with patience, and endeavoured to enter into conversation with some of the officers: but they began to examine me from head to foot, without deigning to speak one syllable; and then looked at one another, smilin with disdain, at the liberty which I j taken, to mingle in their discourse. I was, Iown, quite disconcerted at seeing myself treated in this manner by valets, and had scarce recollected myself from the confusion in which I was, when the closet door opened, and the archbishop appeared. Immediately a profound silence prevailed among the officers, who, all of a sudden, laid aside their insolent carriage, and assumed a respectful look in presence of their master. }. prelate was in his sixty and ninth year, pretty much of the make of my uncle the Canon Gil Perez; that is, plump and short: he was very much bandy-legged into the bargain, and so bald, that he had only a small tuft of hair remaining on the back part of his head; for which reason, he was obliged to cover his head in a fine woollen ca with long ears. In spite of all that, observed in him the air of a man of quality; doubtless, because I knew him to be one. We common people look upon all your great noblemen with a prepossession that often gives them an air of greatness which nature has refused.