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as well as for the whimsical account he gave of me. The next morning at day-break we were all called ; and I, who know my own natural shyness, and endeavour to be as little liable to be disputed with as possible, dressed immediately, that I might make no one wait. 5 The first preparation for our setting out was, that the captain's half-pike was placed near the coachman, and a drum behind the coach. In the mean time the drummer, the captain's equipage, was very loud, " that none of the captain's things should be placed so as to be spoiled ;” 10 upon which his cloak-bag was fixed in the seat of the coach ; and the captain himself, according to a frequent, though invidious behaviour of military men, ordered his man to look sharp, that none but one of the ladies should have the place he had taken fronting the coach-box. 15
We were in sume little time fixed in our seats, and sat with that dislike which people not too good-natured usually conceive of each other at first sight. The coach jumbled us insensibly into some sort of familiarity: and we had not moved above two miles, when the widow 20 asked the captain what success he had in his recruiting? The officer, with a frankness he believed very graceful, told her, “that indeed he had but very little luck, and had suffered much by desertion, therefore should be glad to end his warfare in the service of her or her fair 25 daughter. In a word,” continued he, “I am a soldier, and to be plain is my character: you see me, Madam, young, sound, and impudent; take me yourself, widow, or give me to her, I will be wholly at your disposal. I am a soldier of fortune, ha ! - This was followed by 30 a vain laugh of his own, and a deep silence of all the
rest of the company. I had nothing left for it but to fall fast asleep, which I did with all speed. “Come,” said he,“ resolve upon it, we will make a wedding at the next town: we will wake this pleasant companion who 5 is fallen asleep, to be the brideman; and,” giving the Quaker a clap on the knee, he concluded," this sly saint, who, I'll warrant, understands what's what as well as you or I, widow, shall give the bride as father.” The Quaker, who happened to be a man of smartness, answered,
Friend, I take it in good part that thou hast given me the authority of a father over this comely and virtuous child; and I must assure thee, that if I have the giving her, I shall not bestow her on thee. Thy mirth, friend,
savoureth of folly; thou art a person of a light mind; 15 thy drum is a type of thee - it soundeth because it is
empty. Verily, it is not from thy fulness, but thy emptiness, that thou hast spoken this day. Friend, friend, we have hired this coach in partnership with thee, to carry
us to the great city ; we cannot go any other way. This 20 worthy mother must hear thee if thou wilt needs utter thy
follies; we cannot help it, friend, I say: if thou wilt, we must hear thee; but if thou wert a man of understanding, thou wouldst not take advantage of thy courageous coun
tenance to abash us children of peace. — Thou art, thou 25 sayest, a soldier; give quarter to us, who cannot resist
thee. Why didst thou fleer at our friend, who feigned himself asleep? He said nothing ; but how dost thou know what he containeth? If thou speakest improper
things in the hearing of this virtuous young virgin, con30 sider it as an outrage against a distressed person that
cannot get from thee; to speak indiscreetly what we are
obliged to hear, by being hasped up with thee in this public vehicle, is in some degree assaulting on the high road."
Here Ephraim paused, and the captain with a happy and uncommon impudence (which can be convicted and 5 support itself at the same time) cries, “ Faith, friend, I thank thee, I should have been a little impertinent if thou hadst not reprimanded me. Come, thou art, I see, a smoky old fellow, and I will be very orderly the ensuing part of my journey. I was going to give myself to airs, but, ladies, I beg pardon.”
The captain was so little out of humour, and our company was so far from being soured by this little ruffle, that Ephraim and he took a particular delight in being agreeable to each other for the future; and assumed 15 their different provinces in the conduct of the company. Our reckoning, apartments, and accommodation fell under Ephraim; and the captain looked to all disputes on the road, as the good behaviour of our coachman, and the right we had of taking place, as going to London, of 20 all vehicles coming from thence. The occurrences we met with were ordinary, and very little happened which could entertain by the relation of them: but when I considered the company we were in, I took it for no small good-fortune, that the whole journey was not spent 25 in impertinences, which to one part of us might be an entertainment, to the other a suffering. What therefore Ephraim said when we were almost arrived at London, had to me an air not only of good understanding, but good breeding. Upon the young lady's expressing her 30 satisfaction in the journey, and declaring how delightful
it had been to her, Ephraim declared himself as follows : “There is no ordinary part of human life which expresseth so much a good mind, and a right inward man, as his behaviour upon meeting with strangers, especially 5 such as may seem the most unsuitable companions to him : such a man when he falleth in the way with persons of simplicity and innocence, however knowing he may be in the ways of men, will not vaunt himself
thereof, but will the rather hide his superiority to them, 10 that he may not be painful unto them. My good friend,"
continued he, turning to the officer, “thee and I are to part by and by, and peradventure we may never meet again ; but be advised by a plain man: modes and
apparel but trifles to the real man, therefore do not 15 think such a man as thyself terrible for thy garb, nor
such a one as me contemptible for mine. When two such as thee and I meet, with affections as we ought to have towards each other, thou shouldst rejoice to
see my peaceable demeanour, and I should be glad to 20 see thy strength and ability to protect me in it."
SIR ROGER AND SIR ANDREW FREEPORT.
No. 174. — WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 1711.
HÆC memini et victum frustra contendere Thyrsin.
- VIRG. Ecl. vii. 69.
THERE is scarce any thing more common than animosities between parties that cannot subsist but by their agreement: this was well represented in the sedition of the members of the human body in the old Roman fable. It is often the case of lesser confederate states 5 against a superior power, which are hardly held together, though their unanimity is necessary for their common safety; and this is always the case of the landed and trading interest of Great Britain : the trader is fed by the product of the land, and the landed man cannot be 10 clothed but by the skill of the trader; and yet those interests are ever jarring.
We had last winter an instance of this at our club, in Sir Roger de Coverley and Sir Andrew Freeport, between whom there is generally a constant, though 15 friendly opposition of opinions. It happened that one of the company, in an historical discourse, was observing,
1 Livii, Hist. Dec. 1, Lib. ii. cap. ii.