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destroy and put to death not only all the Big-endian exiles, but likewise all the people of that empire,. who would not immediately forsake the Big-endian heresy: he the said Flestrin, like a false traitor. against his most auspicious, serene and imperial majesty, did petition to be excused from the said service upon pretence of unwillingness to force the consciences, or destroy the liberties and lives of an innocent people.
Art. 3. That, whereas certain ambassadors arrived from the court of Blefuscu to sue for peace in his majesty's court: he the said Flestrin did, like a false traitor, aid, abet, comfort, and divert the said ambassadors, although he knew them to be servants to a prince, who was lately an open enemy to his imperial majesty, and in open war against his said majesty.
Art. 4. That the said Quimbus Flestrin, contrary to the duty of a faithful subject, is now preparing to make a voyage to the court and empire of Blefuscu, for which he hath received only verbal licence from bis imperial majesty; and under colour of the said licence doth falsely and traiterously intend to take the said voyage, and thereby to aid, comfort, and abet the emperor of Blefuscu, so late an enemy, and in open war with his imperial majesty aforesaid.
There are some other articles, but these are the most important of which I have read you an ab
In the several debates upon this impeachment it must be confessed that his majesty gave many marks of his great lenity, often urging the services. had done him, and endeavouring to extenuate your
your crimes. The treasurer and admiral insisted that you should be put to the most painful and ignominious death, by setting fire on your house at night, and the general was to attend with twenty thousand men armed with poisoned arrows to shoot you on the face and hands. Some of your servants were to have private orders to strew a poi-sonous juice on your shirts and sheets, which would soon make you tear your own flesh, and die in the s utmost torture. The general came into the same opinion; so that for a long time there was a ma jority against you: but his majesty resolving, if possible, to spare your life, at last brought over the chamberlain.
Upon this incident Reldresal, principal secretary for private affairs, who always approved himself your true friend, was commanded by the emperor to deliver his opinion, which he accordingly did; and therein justified the good thoughts you have of him. He allowed your crimes to be great, but. that still there was room for mercy, the most commendable virtue in a prince, and for which his majesty was so justly celebrated. He said, the friendship between you and him was so well known to the world, that perhaps the most honourable board might think him partial; however, in obedience to the command he had received, he would freely offer his sentiments. That if his majesty, in consideration of your services, and pursuant to his own merciful disposition, would please to spare your life, and only give order to put out both your eyes, he humbly conceived, that by this expedient justice
justice might in some measure be satisfied, and all the world would applaud the lenity of the emperor, as well as the fair and generous proceedings of those who have the honour to be his counsellors. That the loss of your eyes would be no impediment to your bodily strength, by which you might still be useful to his majesty that blindness is an addition to courage, by concealing dangers from. us; that the fear you had for your eyes, was the greatest difficulty in bringing over the enemies fleet; and it would be sufficient for you to see by the eyes of the ministers, since the greatest princes do no more.
This proposal was received with the utmost disapprobation by the whole board. Bolgolam the admiral could not preserve his temper; but rising up in fury said, he wondered how the secretary. durst presume to give his opinion for preserving the: life of a traitor: that the services you had performed were, by all true reasons of state, the great aggravation of your crimes that you, who was able to extinguish the fire by ****** in her majesty's apartment (which he mentioned with horror) might at another time raise an inundation by the same means to drown the whole palace; and the same strength, which enabled you to bring over the enemies fleet, might serve upon the first discontent to carry it back that he had good reasons to think you even a Big-endian in your - heart; and as treason begins in the heart, before it appears in overt acts, so he accused you as a traitor ha od on
on that account, and therefore insisted be put to death.
The treasurer was of the same opinion: he showed to what streights his majesty's revenue was. reduced by the charge of maintaining you, which would soon grow insupportable: that the secretary's expedient of putting out your eyes was so far from being a remedy against this evil, that it would probably increase it, as is manifest from the common practice of blinding some kind of fowl, after which they feed the faster and grow sooner fat that his sacred majesty and the council, who are your judges, were in their own consciences fully convinced of your guilt, which was a sufficient argument to condemn you to death without the formal proofs required by the strict letter of the law.
But his imperial majesty, fully determined against capital punishment, was graciously pleased to say, that since the council thought the loss of your eyes too easy a censure, some other may be inflicted hereafter. And your friend the secretary, humbly desiring to be heard again, in answer to what the treasurer had objected concerning the great charge his majesty was at in maintaining you, said, that his excellency, who had the sole disposal of the emperor's revenue, might easily pro vide against that evil by gradually lessening your establishment; by which, for want of sufficient food, you would grow weak and faint, and lose your appetite, and consume in a few months; neither
neither would the stench of your carcase be then so dangerous, when it should become more than half diminished; and immediately upon your death five or six thousand of his majesty's subjects might in two or three days cut your flesh from your bones, take it away by cart loads, and bury it in distant parts to prevent infection, leaving the skeleton as a monument of admiration to posterity.
Thus by the great friendship of the secretary the whole affair was compromised. It was strictly enjoined, that the project of starving you by degrees should be kept a secret, but the sentence of putting out your eyes was entered upon the books; none dissenting except Bolgolam the admiral, who, being a creature of the empress, was perpetually instigated by her majesty to insist upon your death, she having borne perpetual malice against you, on account of that infamous and illegal method you took to extinguish the fire in her apartment.
In three days, your friend the secretary will be directed to come to your house, and read before you the articles of impeachment; and then to signify the great lenity and favour of his majesty and council, whereby you are only condemned to the loss of your eyes, which his majesty doth not question you will gratefully and humbly submit to; and twenty of his majesty's surgeons will attend in order to see the operation weli performed, by discharging very sharp pointed arrows into the balls of your eyes, as you lie on the ground.