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to talk so to your officer.” So saying, he of the surgeon's mates : and when he had bestowed on me several severe stripes with a shown me their berth (as he called it), I was supple-jack he had in his hand ; and going to filled with astonishment and horror. We the commanding officer, made such a report of descended by divers ladders to a space as me, that I was immediately put in irons by dark as a dungeon, which I understood was the master at arms, and a centinel placed immersed several feet under water, being over me. Honest Rattlin, as soon as he immediately above the hold. I had no sooner heard of my condition, came to me, and ad- approached this dismal gulf, than my nose ministered all the consolation he could, and was saluted with an intolerable stench of then went to the surgeon in my behalf, who putrified cheese and rancid butter, that issued sent one of his mates to dress my wounds. from an apartment at the foot of the ladder, This mate was no other than my old friend resembling a chandler's shop, where, by the Thomson, with whom I became acquainted faint glimmering of a candle, I could perat the navy-office, as before mentioned. If ceive a man with a pale meagre countenance, I knew him at first sight, it was not easy sitting behind a kind of desk, having specfor him to recognise me, disfigured with blood tacles on his nose, and a pen in his hand. and dirt, and altered by the misery I had un. This (I learned of Mr Thomson) was the dergone. Unknown as I was to him, he ship's steward, who sat there to distribute surveyed me with looks of compassion, and provision to the several messes, and to mark handled my sores with great tenderness. what each received. He therefore presented When he had applied what he thought pro- my name to him, and desired I 'might be per, and was about to leave me, I asked him entered in his mess; then, taking a light in if my misfortunes had disguised me so much his hand, conducted me to the place of his that he could not recollect my face? Upon residence, which was a square of about six this address, he observed me with great ear- feet, surrounded with the medicine chest, nestness for some time, and at length pro- that of the first mate, his own, and a board, tested he could not recollect one feature of by way of table, fastened to the after powder. my countenance. To keep him no longer room: it was also inclosed with canvas in suspense, I told him my name; which, nailed round to the beams of the ship, to when he heard, he embraced me with affec- screen us from the cold, as well as from the tion, and professed his sorrow at seeing me view of the midshipmen and quarter-masters, in such a disagreeable situation. I made who lodged within the cable tiers on each him acquainted with my story; and, when side of us. In this gloomy mansion he enhe heard how inhumanly I had been used tertained me with some cold salt pork, which in the tender, he left me abruptly, assuring he brought from a sort of locker fixed above me I should see him again soon. I had the table; and, calling for the boy of the scarce time to wonder at his sudden depar- mess, sent for a can of beer, of which he ture, when the master at arms came to the made excellent flip to crown the banquet. place of my confinement, and bade me follow By this time I began to recover my spirits, him to the quarter-deck, where I was exam. which had been exceedingly depressed by ined by the first lieutenant, who commanded the appearance of every thing about me, and the ship in the absence of the captain, touch- could no longer refrain from asking the par, ing the treatment I had received in the ten- ticulars of Mr Thomson's fortune, since I had der from my friend the midshipman, who seen him in London. He told me, that, was present to confront me. I recounted being disappointed in his expectations of the particulars of his behaviour to me, not borrowing money to gratify the rapacious only in the tender, but since my being on secretary at the navy-office, he found himboard the ship, part of which being proved self utterly unable to subsist any longer in by the evidence of Jack Rattlin and others, town, and had actually offered his service, in who had no great devotion for my oppressor, quality of mate, to the surgeon of a merchant's I was discharged from confinement, to make ship bound to Guinea on the slaving trade, way for him, who was delivered to the mas- when one morning a young fellow with whom ter at arms, to take his turn in the bilboes. he had some acquaintance came to his lodgAnd this was not the only satisfaction I en- ings, and informed him that he had seen a joyed; for I was, at the request of the sur- warrant made out in his name at the navy, geon, exempted from all other duty than that office, for surgeon's second mate of a third of assisting his mates in making and admin. rate. This unexpected piece of good news istering medicines to the sick. This good he could scarcely believe to be true, more office I owed to the friendship of Mr Thom- especially as he had been found qualified at son, who had represented me in such a surgeons' hall for third mate only; but, that favourable light to the surgeon, that he de. he might not be wanting to himself, he went manded me of the lieutenant to supply the thither to be assured, and actually found it place of his third mate, who was lately dead. so; whereupon demanding his warrant, it When I had obtained this favour, my friend was delivered to him, and the oaths admin. Thomson carried me down to the cock-pit, istered immediately. That very afternoon which is the place allotted for the habitation he went to Gravesend in the tilt-boat,
whence he took a place in the tide-coach for your master says.” Here he was interrupted Rochester; next morning got on board the with—"Splunter and oons ! you lousy tog, Thunder, for which he was appointed, then who do you call my master? get you gone to lying in the harbour at Chatham; and the the doctor, and tell him my birth, and educa. same day was mustered by the clerk of the tion, and my abilities, and moreover my becheque. And well it was for him that such haviour, is as good as his, or any shentleman's expedition was used; for, in less than twelve (no disparagement to him) in the whole world. hours after his arrival, another William Got pless my soul! does he think, or con. Thomson came on board, affirming that he ceive, or imagine, that I am a horse, or an was the person for whom the warrant was ass, or a goat, to trudge backwards and for. expedited, and that the other was an impos- wards, and upwards, and downwards, and by tor. My friend was grievously alarmed at sea and by land, at his will and pleasure ? go the accident, the more so as his namesake your ways, you rapscallion, and tell Dr Athad very much the advantage over him both kins, that I desire and request that he will in assurance and dress. However, to acquit give a look upon the tying man, and order himself of the suspicion of imposture, he pro- something for him if he be tead or alive, and duced several letters written from Scotland I will see him take it by and by, when my to him in that name, and recollecting that craving stomach is satisfied, look you.” At his indentures were in a box on board, he this the other went away, saying, that if they brought them up, and convinced all present would serve him so when he was dying, by that he had not assumed a name which did G-d he would be foul of them in the other not belong to him. His competitor, enraged world. Here Mr Thomson let me know that that they should hesitate in doing him justice the person we heard was Mr Morgan, the (for, to be sure, the warrant had been de- first mate, who was just come on board from signed for him), behaved with so much inde- the hospital, whither he had attended some cent heat, that the commanding officer (who of the sick in the morning. At the same was the same gentleman I had seen), and time I saw him come into the birth. He was the surgeon, were offended at his presump- a short thick man, with a face garnished with tion, and, making a point of it with their pimples, a snub-nose turned up at the end, an friends in town, in less than a week got the excessive wide mouth, and little fierce eyes, first confirmed in his station. “I have been surrounded with skin puckered up in innuon board,” said he, “ever since, and, as this merable wrinkles. My friend immediately way of life is become familiar to me, have made him acquainted with my case; when no cause to complain of my situation: the he regarded me with a very lofty look, but surgeon is a good-natured indolent man: the without speaking, set down a bundle he had first mate, who is now on shore on duty, is in his hand, and approached the cupboard, indeed a little proud and choleric, as all which, when he had opened, he exclaimed, Welchmen are, but in the main a friendly in a great passion,—“Cot is my life! all the honest fellow: the lieutenants I have no pork is gone, as I am a Christian.” Thom. concern with; and as for the captain, he is son then gave him to understand, that as I too much of a gentleman to know a surgeon's had been brought on board half famished, he mate even by sight.”
could do no less than entertain me with what was in the locker; and the rather as he had
bid the steward enter me in the mess. Whe. CHAPTER XXV.
ther this disappointment made Mr Morgan
more peevish than usual, or he really thought The behaviour of Mr Morgan—his pride, himself too little regarded by his fellow mate,
displeasure, and generosity-the economy I know not, but after some pause, he went of our mess described – Thomson's further on in this manner,—“Mr Thomson, perhaps friendship--the nature of my duty ex- you do not use me with all the good manners, plained-lhe situation of the sick. and complaisance, and respect, look you, that
becomes you, because you have not vouchWhile he was thus discoursing to me, we safed to advise with me in this affair. I have, heard a voice on the cock-pit ladder pro- in my time, look you, been a man of some nounce with great vehemence, in a strange weight and substance, and consideration, and dialect,-“ The devil and his dam blow me have kept house and home, and paid scot and from the top of Mounchdenny, if I go to him lot, and the king's taxes; ay, and maintained before there is something in my pelly; let his a family to boot. And moreover, also, I am nose be as yellow as saffron, or as plue as a your senior, and your elder, and your petter, pell (look you), or green as a leek, 'tis all Mr Thomson.” “My elder I'll allow you
To this declaration somebody an- to be, but not my better,” cried Thomson, swered,"So it seems my poor mess-mate with some heat. “ Cot is my saviour and must part his cable for want of a little assis- witness too,” said Morgan, with great vehe. tance. His fore-top-sail is loose already; mence, “that I am more elder, and therefore and besides, the doctor ordered you to over- more petter by many years than you.” Fearhaul him ; but I see you don't mind what I ing this dispute might be attended with some
bad consequence, I interposed, and told Mr way." “ Passion of my heart !" cried Mor.
ner by my friend Jack Rattlin ; and as I had over the ship, to the utter discomposure of no bed-clothes, procured credit for me with the every body who tarried on the same deck: purser for a mattrass and two blankets. At neither was the consequence of this disgrace seven o'clock in the evening, Morgan visited confined to my sense of smelling only ; for the sick, and having ordered what was pro- I felt my misfortune more ways than one. per for each, I assisted Thomson in making That I might not, however, appear altogether up his prescriptions; but when I followed disconcerted in this my first essay, I got up,
I him with the medicines into the sick berth or and pushing my head with great force between hospital, and observed the situations of the two hammocks, towards the middle, where patients, I was much less surprised that peo- the greatest resistance was, I made an openple should die on board, than that any sick ing, indeed, but, not understanding the knack person should recover. Here I saw about of dexterously turning my shoulder to mainfifty miserable distempered wretches, sus- tain my advantage, had the mortification to pended in rows, so huddled one upon another, find myself stuck up as it were in a pillory, that not more than fourteen inches space was and the weight of three or four people bearallotted for each, with his bed and bedding; ing on each side of my neck, so that I was and deprived of the light of the day, as well in danger of strangulation. While I remainas of fresh air ; breathing nothing but a noi- ed in this defenceless posture, one of the sick some atmosphere of the morbid steams ex- men, rendered peevish by his distemper, was haling from their own excrements and dis- so enraged at the smell I had occasioned, and eased bodies, devoured with vermin hatched the rude shock he had received from me in in the filth that surrounded them, and desti- my elevation, that, with many bitter reproachtute of every convenience necessary for peo- es, he seized me by the nose, which he ple in that helpless condition.
tweaked so unmercifully, that I roared with anguish. Thomson, perceiving my condition,
ordered one of the waiters to my assistance, CHAPTER XXVI.
who with much difficulty disengaged me from
this situation, and hindered me from taking A disagreeable accident happens to me in vengeance of the sick man, whose indisposi
the discharge of my ofice-Morgan's tion would not have screened him from the nose is offended-a dialogue between him effects of my indignation. and the ship's steward-upon examina- After having made an end of our ministry tion, I find more causes of complaint than for that time, we descended to the cock-pit, one-my hair cut off — Morgan's cook- my friend comforting me for what had hapery—the manner of sleeping on board— pened with a homely proverb, which I do I am waked in the night by a dreadful not choose to repeat. When we had descendnoise.
ed half way down the ladder, Mr Morgan,
before he saw us, having intelligence by his I could not comprehend how it was possible nose of the approach of something extraordifor the attendants to come near those who nary, cried, “Cot have mercy upon my senhung on the inside towards the sides of the ses ? I believe the enemy has porded us in a ship, in order to assist them, as they seemed stink-pot !" Then directing his discourse to barricadoed by those who lay on the outside, the steward, from whom he imagined the and entirely out of the reach of all visitation. odour proceeded, he reprimanded him severe. Much less could I conceive how my friendly for the freedoms he took among gentleThomson would be able to administer clys- men of birth, and threatened to smoke him ters, that were ordered for some in that situ. like a padger with sulphur, if he ever should ation; when I saw him thrust his wig into presume to offend his neighbours with such his pocket, and strip himself to his waistcoat smells for the future. The steward, conin a moment, then creep on all four under the scious of his own innocence, replied, with hammocks of the sick, and, forcing up his some warmth,—“I know of no smells but bare pate between two, keep them asunder those of your own making.” This repartee with one shoulder until he had done his duty. introduced a smart dialogue, in which the Eager to learn the service, I desired he would Welchman undertook to prove, that though give me leave to perform the next operation the stench he complained of did not flow of that kind; and he consenting, I undressed from the steward's own body, he was, nevermyself after his example, and crawling along, theless, the author of it, by serving out damthe ship happened to roll ; this motion alarm- aged provisions to the ship’s company; and, ed me, I laid hold of the first thing that came in particular, putrified cheese, from the use within my grasp, with such violence, that I of which only, he affirmed, such unsavoury overturned it, and soon found, by the smell steams could arise. Then he launched out that issued upon me, I had not unlocked a into the praise of good cheese, of which he box of the most delicious perfume: it was well gave the analysis : he explained the different for me that my nose was none of the most deli- kinds of that commodity, with the methods cate, else I know not how I might have been practised to make and preserve it ; and conaffected by this vapour, which diffused itself all cluded with observing, that, in yielding good
cheese, the county of Glamorgan might vie where they seemed to lie concealed, very with Cheshire itself, and was much superior much at their ease. But it was some time to it in the produce of goats and putter. I before I could prevail upon myself to trust my gathered from this conversation, that, if I carcass at such a distance from the ground, in entered in my present pickle, I should be no a narrow bag, out of which I imagined I welcome guest : and therefore desired Mr should be apt, on the least motion in my sleep, Thomson to go before, and represent my ca- to tumble down, at the hazard of breaking my lamity; at which the first mate expressing bones. I suffered myself, however, to be some concern, went upon deck immediately, persuaded, and, taking a leap to get in, threw taking his way through the cable tier, and by myself quite over, with such violence, that, the main hatchway, to avoid encountering me, had I not luckily got hold of Thomson's desiring me to clean myself as soon as possi- hammock, I should have pitched upon my ble, for he intended to regale himself with a head on the other side, and in all likelihood dish of salmagundy and a pipe. According- fractured my skull. After some fruitless ly I set about this disagreeable business, and efforts, I succeeded at last ; but the apprehen. soon found I had more causes of complaint sion of the jeopardy in which I believed mythan I at first imagined; for I perceived some self, withstood all the attacks of sleep, till guests had honoured me with their company, towards the morning watch; when, in spite whose visit I did not at all think seasonable; of my fears, I was overpowered with slumber, neither did they seem inclined to leave me in though I did not long enjoy this comfortable a hurry, for they were in possession of my situation, being aroused with a noise so loud chief quarters, where they fed without re- and shrill, that I thought the drums of my serve at the expense of my blood. But con- ears were burst by it ; this was followed by a sidering it would be much easier to extirpate dreadful summons pronounced by a hoarse this ferocious colony in the infancy of their voice, which I could not understand. While settlement, than after they should be multi- I was debating with myself whether or not I plied and naturalized to the soil, I took the should wake my companion, and inquire into advice of my friend, who, to prevent such the occasion of this disturbance, I was in. misfortunes, went always close shaved, and formed by one of the quarter-masters, who made the boy of our niess cut off my hair, passed by me with a lantern in his hand, that which had been growing since I left the ser- the noise which alarmed me was occasioned vice of Lavement, and the second mate lent by the boatswain's mates, who called up the me an old bob-wig, to supply the loss of that larboard watch, and that I must lay my accovering
count with such interruption every morning This affair being ended, and every thing at the same hour. Being now more assured adjusted in the best manner my circum- of my safety, I addressed myself again to rest, stances would permit, the descendant of Car- and slept till eight o'clock, when rising, and actacus relurned, and ordering the boy to breakfasting with my comrades on biscuit and bring a piece of salt beef from the brine, cut brandy, the sick were visited and assisted as off a slice, and mixed it with an equal quanti- before ; after which visitation my good friend ty of onions, which seasoning with a mode- Thomson explained and performed another rate proportion of pepper and salt, he brought piece of duty to which I was a stranger. At it into a consistence with oil vinegar; a certain hour in the morning, the boy of the then tasting the dish, assured us it was the mess went round all the decks, ringing a best salmagundy that ever he made, and re- small hand-bell, and, in rhymes composed for commended it to our palates with such heart- the occasion, invited all those who had sores iness, that I could not help doing honour to to repair before the mast, where one of the his preparation. But I had no sooner swal. doctor's mates attended, with applications to lowed a mouthful, than I thought my entrails dress them. were scorched, and endeavoured, with a deluge of small beer, to allay the heat it occasioned. . Supper being over, Mr Morgan hay
CHAPTER XXVII. ing smoked a couple of pipes, and supplied the moisture he had expended with as many I acquire the friendship of the surgeon, cans of flip, of which we all partook, a cer- who procures a warrant for me, and makes tain yawning began to admonish me, that it me a present of clothes--a battle between was high time to repair by sleep the injury I a midshipman and me--the surgeon leaves had suffered from want of rest the preceding the ship—the captain comes on board with night ; which being perceived by my com- another surgeon-a dialogue between the panions, whose time of repose was now arri. captain and Morgan—the sick are order. ved, they proposed we should turn in, or, in ed to be broughi upon the quarter-deck other words, go to bed. Our hammocks, and examined the consequences of that which hung parallel to one another, on the order-a madman accuses Morgan, and is outside of the berth, were immediately un. set at liberty by command of the captain, lashed, and I beheld my mess-mates spring whom he instantly attacks and pummels with great agility into their respective nests,