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fray, did not tarry to take leave of his master, 1 perceiving the discomfiture of their leader, but made the most of his way to Greavesbury- armed themselves with stones; the serjeant hall, where he appeared hardly with any ves- raised his halbert in a posture of defence, and tige of the human countenance, so much had immediately a severe action ensued. By he been defaced in this adventure. He did this tiine Crabshaw had drawn his sword, and not fail to raise a great clamour against Sir began to lay about him like a devil incarnate; Launcelot, whom he cursed as a coward in but, in a little time, he was saluted by a volley plain terms, swearing he would never serve of stones, one of which knocked out two of him another day: but whether he altered his his grinders, and brought him to the earth, mind on cooler reflection, or was lectured by where he had liked to have found no quarter; his wife, who well understood her own in- for the whole company crowded about him, terest, he rose with the cock, and went with their cudgels brandished; and perhaps again in quest of Sir Launcelot, whom he he owed his preservation to their pressing found on the eve of a very hazardous enter. so hard that they hindered one another from prise.
using their weapons. “ In the midst of a lane, the knight hap- “Sir Launcelot seeing, with indignation, pened to meet with a party of about forty the unworthy treatment his squire had rerecruits, commanded by a serjeant, a corpo-ceived, and scorning to stain bis lance with ral, and a drummer, which last had his drum the blood of plebeians, instead of couching it slung at his back; but seeing such a strange in the rest, seized it by the middle, and figure mounted on a high-spirited horse, he fetching one blow at the serjeant, broke in was seized with an inclination to divert his twain the halbert, which he had raised as a company. With this view, he braced his quarter-staff for his defence. The second drum, and hanging it in its proper position, stroke encountered his pate, which being began to beat a point_of war, advancing the hardest part about him, sustained the under the very nose of Bronzomarte; while shock withont damage ; but the third, lightthe corporal exclaimed,—D—n my eyes, ing on his ribs, be honoured the giver who have we got here !-Old King Stephen, with immediate prostration. The general from the horse armoury in the tower, or the being thus overthrown, Sir Launcelot ad. fellow that rides arıned at my lord mayor's vanced to the relief of Crabshaw, and handled show?' The knigḥt's steed seemed at least his weapon so effectually, that the whole as well pleased with the sound of the drum, body of the enemy were disabled or routed, as were the recruits that followed it; and before one cudgel had touched the carcass signified his satisfaction in some curvetings of the fallen squire. As for the corporal, and caprioles, which did not at all discom- instead of standing by his commanding offipose the rider, who, addressing himself to cer, he had overleaped the hedge, and run the serjeant,— Friend,' said he, 'you ought to the constable of an adjoining village for to teach your drummer better manners. I assistance. Accordingly, before Crabshaw would chastise the fellow on the spot for could be properly remounted, the peacehis insolence, were it not out of the respect officer arrived with his posse; and by the I bear to his majesty's service.' •Respect corporal was charged with Sir Launcelot mine ! cried this ferocious commander, and his squire as two highwaymen. The what, d’ye think to frighten us with your constable, astonished at the martial figure pewter piss-pot on your skull, and your lac-of the knight, and intimidated at sight of the quered pot-lid on your arm? get out of the havoc he had made, contented himself with way, and be dd, or I'll raise with my standing at a distance, displaying the badge halbert such a clatter upon your target, that of his office, and reminding the knight that you'll remember it the longest day you have he represented his majesty's person. to live. At that instant Crabshaw arriving “Sir Launcelot, seeing the poor man in upon Gilbert,-_So, rascal,' said Sir Laun- great agitation, assured him that his design celot, «you are returned. Go and beat in was to enforce, not violate the laws of his that scoundrel's drum-head.'
country; and that he and his squire would “The squire, who saw no weapons of attend him to the next justice of peace; offence about the drummer but a sword, but, in the mean time, he, in his turn, which he hoped the owner durst not draw, charged the peace-officer with the serand being resolved to exert himself in making jeant and drummer, who had begun the atonement for his desertion, advanced to exe- fray. cute his master's orders; but Gilbert, who • The justice had been a pettifogger, and liked not the noise, refused to proceed in the was a sycophant to a nobleman in the neighordinary way. Then the squire turning his bourhood, who had a post at court. He tail to the drummer, he advanced in a retro- therefore thought he should oblige his patron grade motion, and with one kick of his heels, by showing his respect for the military; and not only broke the drum into a thousand treated our knight with the most boorish pieces, but laid the drummer in the mire, insolence; but refused to admit him into his with such a blow upon his hip-bone, that he house, until he had surrendered all his wea. halted all the days of his life. The recruits, 1 pons of offence to the constable. Sir Laun.
celot and his squire being found the aggressors, the justice insisted upon making out
CHAPTER VI. their mittimus, if they did not find bail immediately; and could hardly be prevailed In which the reader will perceive that in upon to agree that they should remain at the some cases madness is catching. house of the constable, who being a publican, undertook to keep them in safe custody, Mr Clarke having made an end of his until the knight could write to his steward. narrative, the surgeon thanked him for the Meanwhile he was bound over to the peace; entertainment he had received ; and Mr Fer. and the serjeant with his drummer were told ret shrugged up his shoulders in silent disapthey had a good action against him for assault probation. As for Captain Crowe, who used and battery, either by information or indict. at such pauses to pour in a broadside of disment.
membered remarks, linked together like “ They were not, however, so fond of the chain-shot, he spoke not a syllable for some law as the justice seemed to be. Their sen- time; but, lighting a fresh pipe at the can. timents had taken a turn in favour of Sir dle, began to roll such voluminous clouds of Launcelot, during the course of his examina- smoke as in an instant filled the whole apart. tion, by which it appeared that he was really ment, and rendered himself invisible to the a gentleman of fashion and fortune; and whole company. Though he thus shrouded they resolved to compromise the affair with himself from their view, he did not long re, out the intervention of his worship. Accord- main concealed from their hearing. They ingly, the serjeant repaired to the constable's first heard a strange dissonant cackle, which house, where the knight was lodged, and the doctor knew to be a sea-laugh, and this humbled himself before his honour, protest- was followed by an eager exclamation ofing with many oaths, that, if he had known “ Rare pastime, strike my yards and tophis quality, he would have beaten the drum- masts ;-I've a good mind—why shouldn'tmer's brains about his ears, for presuming to many a losing voyage I've—smile my taffrel give his honour or his horse the least dis- but I wool turbance; thof the fellow, he believed, was By this time he had relaxed so much in his sufficiently punished in being a cripple for fumigation, that the tip of his nose and one life.
eye re-appeared ; and as he had drawn his “Sir Launcelot admitted of his apologies, wig forwards, so as to cover his whole fore. and taking compassion on the fellow who head, the figure that now saluted their eyes had suffered so severely for his folly, resolved was much more ferocious and terrible than to provide for his maintenance. Upon the the fire-breathing chimera of the ancients. representation of the parties to the justice, Notwithstanding this dreadful appearance, the warrant was next day discharged; and there was no indignation in his heart, but, the knight returned to his own house, at- on the contrary, an agreeable curiosity, tended by the serjeant and the drummer which he was determined to gratify. mounted on horseback, the recruits being Addressing himself to Mr Fillet, —-" Priyleft to the corporal's charge.
thee, doctor,” said he, “can'st tell whether “ The halberdier found the good effects of a man, without being rated a lord or a baron, Sir Launcelot's liberality; and his companion or what dy'ye call um, d'ye see, mayn't take being rendered unfit for his majesty's service, to the highway in the way of a frolic d'ye by the heels of Gilbert, is now entertained see ? Adad ! for my own part, brother, I'm at Greavesbury-hall, where he will probably resolved as how to cruise a bit in the way of remain for life.
an arrant-ifso be as I can't at once be com. “ As for Crabshaw, his master gave him mander, mayhap I may be bore upon the to understand, that if he did not think him books as a petty officer or the like, d'ye see.” pretty well chastised for his presumption and “ Now, the Lord forbid !" cried Clarke, Alight, by the discipline he had undergone in with tears in his eyes, “I'd rather see you the last two adventures, he would turn him dead than brought to such a dilemma." out of his service with disgrace. Timothy Mayhap thou would'st,” answered the unsaid, he believed it would be the greatest cle; " for then, my lad, there would be some favour he could do him to turn him out picking-aha ! do'st thou tip me the travel. of a service in which he knew he should ler, my boy?" Tom assured him he scorned þe rib-roasted every day, and murdered at any such mercenary views :-"I am only last.
concerned,” said he, “ that you should take “ In this situation were things at Greaves- any step that might tend to the disgrace of bury-hall about a month ago, when I crossed yourself or your family ; and I say again, I the country to Ferrybridge, where I met my had rather die than live to see you reckoned uncle; probably this is the first incident of any other ways than compos.
“ Die and their second excursion; for the distance be-bed- -d! you shambling half timbered son tween this here house and Sir Launcelot's of a ," cried the choleric Crowe, “ do'st estate does not exceed fourscore or ninety talk to me of keeping a reckoning and commiles."
pass ! I could keep a reckoning, and box
my compass long enough before thy keel. | as well as the nephew. Clarke seemed to stone was laid-Sam Crowe is not come relish the scheme ; and observed, that his here to ask thy counsel how to steer his uncle, though endued with courage enough
Lord, sir," resumed the nephew, to face any human danger, had at bottom a “consider what people will say—all the world strong fund of superstition, which he had will think you mad.” “Set thy heart at acquired, or at least improved, in the course ease, Tom,” cried the seaman, “I'll have a of a sea life. Ferret, who perhaps would trip to and again in this here channel. Mad! not have gone ten paces out of his road to what then, I think for my part one half of save Crowe from the gallows, nevertheless the nation is mad—and the other not very engaged as an auxiliary, merely in hope of sound—I don't see why I han't as good a seeing a fellow-creature miserable; and even right to be mad as another man. But, doc. undertook to be the principal agent in this tor, as I was saying, I'd be bound to you, if adventure. For this office, indeed, he was you would direct me where I can buy that better qualified than they could have imasame tackle that an arrant must wear; as for gined. In the bundle which he kept under the matter of the long-pole, headed with his great coat, there was, together with diiron, I'd never desire better than a good vers nostrums, a small phial of liquid phosboat-hook, and I could make a special good phorus, sufficient, as he had already observed, target of that there tin sconce that holds the to frighten a whole neighbourhood out of candle-mayhap any blacksmith will hammer their senses. me a scull-cap, d’ye see, out of an old brass In order to concert the previous measures, kettle ; and I can call my horse by the name without being overheard, these confederates of my ship, which was Mufti."
retired with a candle and lanthorn into the The surgeon was one of those wags who stable ; and their backs were scarce turned, can laugh inwardly, without exhibiting the when captain Crowe came in loaded with least outward mark of mifth or satisfaction. pieces of the knight's armour, which he had He at once perceived the amusement which conveyed from the apartment of Sir Launcemight be drawn from this strange disposition lot, whom he had left fast asleep. of the sailor, together with the most likely Understanding that the rest of the compameans which could be used to divert him ny were gone out for a moment, he could not from such an extravagant pursuit. He there. resist the inclination he felt of cominunicatfore tipped Clarke the wink with one side of ing his intention to the landlady, who, with his face, while the other was very gravely her daughter, had been too much engaged in turned to the captain, whom he addressed to preparing Crabshaw's supper, to know the this effect.--"It is not far from hence to purport of their conversation.
The good Sheffield, where you might be completely woman, being informed of the captain's defitted in half a day—then you must wake sign to remain alone all night in the church, your armour in church or chapel, and be began to oppose it with all her rhetoric. She dubbed. As for this last ceremony, it may said it was setting his Maker at defiance, be performed by any person whatsoever. Don and a wilful running into temptation. She Quixote was dubbed by his landlord ; and assured him that all the country knew that there are many instances on record of er- the church was haunted by spirits and hobrants obliging and compelling the next per- goblins; that lights had been seen in every son they met to cross their shoulders, and corner of it, and a tall woman in white had dub them knights. I myself would under one night appeared upon the top of the take to be your godfather; and I have inter- tower; that dreadful shrieks were often est enough to procure the keys of the parish heard to come from the south aisle, where a church that stands hard by ; besides, this is murdered man had been buried ; that she the eve of St Martin, who was himself a herself had seen the cross on the steeple all knight-errant, and therefore a proper patron a-fire ; and one evening as she passed on to noviciate. I wish we could borrow Sir horseback, close by the stile at the entrance Launcelot's armour for the occasion." into the church-yard, the horse stood still,
Crowe, being struck with this hint, started sweating and trembling, and had no power up, and, laying his fingers on his lips to en- to proceed until she had repeated the Lord's join silence, walked off softly on his tiptoes, prayer. to listen at the door of our knight's apart
These remarks made a strong impression ment, and judge whether or not he was on the imagination of Crowe, who asked, in asleep. Mr Fillet took this opportunity to some confusion, if she had got that same tell his nephew that it would be in vain for prayer in print? She made no'answer, but him to combat this humour with reason and reaching the prayer-book from a shelf, and argument; but the piost effectual way of di- turning up the leaf, put it into his hand ; then verting him from the plan of knight-errantry the captain, having adjusted his spectacles, would be to frighten him heartily while he began to read, or rather spell aloud, with should keep his vigil in the church. To- equal eagerness and solemnity. He had rewards the accomplishment of which purpose, freshed his memory so well as to remember he craved the assistance of the misanthrope I the whole, when the doctor, returning with
his companions, gave him to understand that devotion, and returned to the public house in he had procured the key of the chancel, order to execute the essential part of their where he might watch his armour as well as project. in the body of the church, and that he was ready to conduct him to the spot. Crowe was not now quite so forward as he had ap
CHAPTER VII. peared before to achieve this adventure : he began to start objections with respect to the In which the knight resumes his importance. borrowed armour; he wanted to stipulate the comforts of a can of flip, and a candle's end, DOCTOR FILLET having borrowed a couple during his vigil ; and hinted something of of sheets from the landlady, dressed the misthe damage he might sustain from your ma- anthrope and Tom Clarke in ghostly apparel, licious imps of darkness.
which was reinforced by a few drops of liquid The doctor told him, the constitutions of phosphorus, froin Ferret's vial, rubbed on the chivalry absolutely required that he should be foreheads of the two adventurers. Thus left in the dark alone, and fasting, to spend equipped, they returned to the church with the night in pious meditations; but if he had their conductor, who entered with them softly any fears which disturbed his conscience, he at an aisle which was opposite to a place had much better desist, and give up all where the novice kept watch. They stole thoughts of knight-errantry, which could not unperceived through the body of the church; consist with the least shadow of apprehen- and though it was so dark that they could sion. The captain, stung by this remark, not distinguish the captain with the eye, replied not a word ; but, gathering up the they heard the sound of his steps, as he armour into a bundle, threw it on his back, walked backwards and forwards on the pave. and set out for the place of probation, pre- ment with uncommon expedition, and an ceded by Clarke with the lanthorn. When ejaculation now and then escaped in a mur. they arrived at the church, Fillet, who had mur from his lips. procured the key from the sexton, who was The triumvirate having taken their station his patient, opened the door, and conducted with a large pew in their front, the two our novice into the middle of the chancel, ghosts uncovered their heads, which, by help where the armour was deposited; then bid of the phosphorus, exhibited a pale and ding Crowe draw his hanger, committed him lambent flame, extremely dismal and ghastly to the protection of Heaven, assuring him he to the view: then Ferret, in a squeaking would come back, and find him either dead tone, exclaimed, -"Samuel Crowe! Samuel or alive by daybreak, and perform the re- Crowe!” The captain hearing himself acmaining part of the ceremony. So saying, costed in this manner, at such a time, and in he and the other associates shook him by the such a place, replied, “hilloa !” and, turnhand, and took their leave, after the surgeon ing his eyes towards the quarter whence the had tilted up the lanthorn to take a view of voice seemed to proceed, beheld the terrible his visage, which was pale and haggard. apparition. This no sooner saluted his view,
“Before the door was locked upon him, than his hair bristled up, his knees began to he called aloud," hilloa! doctor, hip-knock, and his teeth to chatter, while he another word, d'ye see-" They forthwith cried aloud, --" In the name of God, where returned to know what he wanted, and found are you bound, ho ?" To this hail the misanhim already in a sweat. “ Hark ye, brother," thrope answered,—“We are the spirits of said he, wiping his face, “I do suppose as thy grandmother Jane and thy aunt Bridget.” how one may pass away the time in whistling At mention of these names Crowe's terrors the Black Joke, or singing Black Ey'd Susan, began to give way to his resentment, and he or some such sorrowful ditty.”. “By no pronounced, in a quick tone of surprise, means," cried the doctor, “such pastimes mixed with indignation,—“What d'ye want? are neither suitable to the place nor the oc- what d'ye want? what d'ye want, ho ?" casion, which is altogether a religious exer- The spirit replied, "We are sent to warn cise. If you have got any psalms by heart, thee of thy fate." • From whence, ho ?” you may sing a stave or two, or repeat the cried the captain, whose choler had by this Doxology." “Would I had Tom Laverick time well nigh triumphed over his fear. here," replied our noviciate," he would sing " From heaven,” said the voice. “ Ye lie, you anthems like a sea-mew—a had been a ye b—s of hell !" did our novice exclaim, clerk ashore—many's the time and often I've ye are damned for heaving me out of my given him a rope's end for singing psalms in right, five fathom and a half by the lead, in the larboard watch-would I had hired the burning brimstone. Don't I see the blue son of a b— to have taught me a cast of flames come out of your hawse holes-mayhis office-but it cannot be holp, brother-if hap you may be the devil himself for aught I we can't go large, we must haul upon a wind, know-but I trust in the Lord, dy'e see-1 as the saying ismif we can't sing, we must never disrated a kinsman, dy'e see, so don't pray." The company again left him to his come alongside of me-put about on t'other
tack, d’ye see--you need not clap hard | releasing him instantly from his grasp aweather, for you'll soon get to hell again “ Bodikins !" cried he, “ I believe as how this with a flowing sail.”
hause is haunted—who thought to meet with So saying, he had recourse to his paternos-Measter Laawyer Clarke at midnight, and ter; but perceiving the apparitions approach, so far from hoam." The landlady could not he thundered out," Avast, avast, sheer off, comprehend the meaning of this encounter; ye babes of hell, or I'll be foul of your fore- nor could Tom conceive how Crabshaw had lights.” He accordingly sprung forwards transported himself thither from the room with his hanger, and very probably would below, in which he saw him quietly reposed. have set the spirits on their way to the other Yet nothing was more easy than to explain world, had he not fallen over a pew in the this mystery : the apartment below was the dark, and entangled himself so much among chamber which the hostess and her daughter the benches, that he could not immediately reserved for their own convenience: and this recover his footing. The triumvirate took particular having been intimated to the squire this opportunity to retire ; and such was the while he was at supper, he had resigned the precipitation of Ferret in his retreat, that he bed quietly, and been conducted hither in the encountered a post, by which his right eye absence of the company. Tom, recollecting sustained considerable damage ; a circum- himself as well as he could, professed himstance which induced him to inveigh bitterly self of Crabshaw's opinion, that the house against his own folly, as well as the imperti- was haunted, declaring that he could not nence of his companions, who had inveigled well account for his being there in the dark ; him into such à troublesome adventure. and, leaving those that were assembled to Neither he nor Clarke could be prevailed discuss this knotty point, retired down stairs, upon to revisit the novice. The doctor him in hope of meeting with his charmer, whom self thought his disease was desperate, and, accordingly he found in the kitchen just risen, mounting his horse, returned to his own ha- and wrapped in a loose dishabille. bitation.
The noise of Crabshaw's cries had awa. Ferret, finding all the beds in the public kened and aroused his master, who, risiny house were occupied, composed himself to suddenly in the dark, snatched up his sword sleep in a Windsor chair at the chimney that lay by his bed-side, and hastened to corner; and Mr Clarke, whose disposition the scene of tumult, where all their mouths was extremely amorous, resolved to renew were opened at once to explain the cause his practices on the heart of Dolly. He had of the disturbance, and make an apology reconnoitered the apartments in which the for breaking his honour's rest. He said bodies of the knight and his squire were de- nothing, but, taking the candle in his hand, posited, and discovered, close by the top of beckoned his squire to follow him into his the stair-case, a sort of closet or hovel, just apartment, resolving to arm and take horse large enough to contain a truckle-bed, which, immediately. Crabshaw understood his from some other particulars, he supposed to meaning; and while he shuffled on his clothes, be the bed-chamber of his beloved Dolly, who yawning hideously all the while, wished the had by this time retired to her repose. Full lawyer at the devil for having visited him so of this idea, and instigated by the demon of unseasonably; and even cursed himself for desire, Mr Thomas crept softly up stairs, the noise he had made, in consequence of and, lifting the latch of the closet door, his which he foresaw he should now be obliged heart began to palpitate with joyous expecta- to forfeit his night's rest, and travel in the tion ; but before he could breathe the gentle dark, exposed to the inclemencies of the effusions of his love, the supposed damsel weather. “Pox rot thee, Tom Clarke, for started up, and, seizing him by the collar a wicked lawyer !" said he to himself, with an Herculean gripe, uttered, in the voice " hadst thou been hanged at Bartelmey-tide, of Crabshaw,—“ It wan't for nothing that I I should this night have slept in peace, that dreamed of Newgate, sirrah : but I'd have I should—an I would there were a blister on thee to know, an arrant squire is not to be this plaguy tongue of mine for making such robbed by such a peddling thief as thee- a hollaballoo, that I do,five gallons of cold here I'll howld thee vast, and the devil were water has my poor belly been drenched with in thy doublet-help! murder ! vire! help!" since night fell, so as my reins and my liver
It was impossible for Mr Clarke to disen- are all one as if they were turned into ice, gage himself
, and equally impracticable to and my whole harslet shakes and shivers speak in his own vindication; so that here like a vial of quicksilver. I have been drag. he stood trembling and half-throttled, until ged, half drowned like a rotten ewe, from the whole house being alarmed, the landlady the bottom of a river; and who knows but and her ostler ran up stairs with a candle. I may be next dragged quite dead from the When the light rendered objects visible, an bottom of a coal-pit—if so be as I am, I equal astonishment prevailed on all sides : shall go to hell to be sure, for being con. Crabshaw was confounded at sight of Mr sarned like in my own moorder, that I will, Clarke, whose person he well knew; and, Iso I will; for a plague on it, I had no busi