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of an immediate supply of napkins, my black silk breeches were not stout enough to save me from the painful effects of this sudden fomentation, and for some minutes my legs and thighs seemed stewed in a boiling cauldron; but recollecting how Sir Thomas had disguised his torture when I had trod upon his toes, I firmly bore my pain in silence, and sat with my lower extremities parboiled, amidst the stifled giggling of the ladies and the servants. I will not relate the several blunders which I made during the first course, or the distress occasioned by my being desired to carve a fowl, or help to various dishes that stood near me, spilling a sauce-boat, and knocking down a salt-cellar; rather let me hasten to the second course, where fresh disasters overwhelmed me quite!
I had a piece of rich sweet pudding on my fork, when Miss Louisa Friendly begged to trouble me for some of a pigeon that stood near me. In my haste, scarce knowing what I did, I whipped the pudding into my mouth, hot as a burning coal: it was impossible to conceal my agony; my eyes were starting from their sockets.
At last, in spite of shame and resolution, I was obliged to drop the cause of my torment on my plate. Sir Thomas and the ladies all compassionated my misfortune, and each advised a different application. One recommended oil, another water, but all agreed that wine was the best for drawing out the heat; but, oh! how shall I tell the sequel ? The butler, by accident, gave me the strongest brandy, with which I filled my mouth, already flayed and blistered. With my tongue, throat, and palate, raw as beef, what could I do? I could not swallow; and clapping my hands upon my mouth, the cursed liquor squirted through my nose and fingers, like a fountain, over all the dishes. In vain did Sir Thomas reprimand the servants, and Lady Friendly chide her daughters; for the measure of my shame, and their diversion, was not yet complete. To relieve me from the intolerable state of perspiration which this accident had caused, without considering what I did, I wiped my face with that ill-fated handkerchief, still wet from the fall of Xenophon, and covered my features with streaks of ink in
every direction. The Baronet himself could not support this shock, but joined his lady in the general laugh; while I sprung from the table in despair, rushed out of the house, and ran home in an agony of confusion and disgrace.
THE DEATH OF KEELDAR.
Sir Walter Scott.
Up rose the sun o'er moor and mead;
Career'd along the lea;
They were a jovial three !
Man, hound, or horse, of higher fame, To wake the wild deer never came, Since Alnwick's Earl pursued the game
On Cheviot's rueful day ; Keeldar was matchless in his speed, Than Taurus ne'er was stauncher steed, A peerless archer Percy Rede:
And right dear friends were they.
The chase engross’d their joys and woes,
By fountain or by stream ;
Still hunted in his dream.
The signs the hunters know;-
The archer strings his bow. The game's afoot !-Halloo! halloo ! Hunter, and horse, and hound pursue ; But woe the shaft that erring flew
That e'er it left the string ! And ill betide the faithless yew! The stag bounds scatheless o'er the dew, And gallant Keeldar's life-blood true
Has drench'd the grey-goose wing. The noble hound-he dies, he dies ! Death, death has glaz’d his fixed eyes, Stiff on the bloody heath he lies,
Without a moan or quiver. Now day may break, and bugle sound, And whoop and hollow ring around, And o'er his couch the stag may bound,
But Keeldar sleeps for ever.
Nor what is death ; but still
Some mystic tale of ill.
But he that bent the fatal bow,
In speechless grief recline;
Dear master, was it thine ?
And if it be, the shaft be bless'd,
I in your service die;
So true a guard as I."
And to his last stout Percy rued
And fell amid the fray,
I had not died to-day !”
SCENE FROM JANE SHORE,
Enter GLOCESTER and HASTINGS.
Gloc. My lord, you're well encountered; here has been A fair petitioner this morning with us : Believe me, she has won me much to pity her : Alas ! her gentle nature was not made To buffet with adversity. I told her How worthily her cause you had befriended; How much for your good sake we meant to do, That
you had spoke, and all things should be well. Hast. Your highness binds me ever to your service.
Gloc. You know your friendship is most potent with us, And shares our power. But of this enough, For we have other matters for your ear ; The state is out of tune; distracting fears, And jealous doubts, jar in our public councils; Amidst the wealthy city murmurs rise,
Loud railings, and reproach on those that rule,
Hast. The lazy knaves are over-run with ease,
Gloc. Beshrew my heart! but you have well divin'd
Hast. 'Tis true, the king is young; but what of that?
Gloc. The council (much I'm bound to thank them fort!)
Hast. Of this I am to learn; as not supposing
Gloc. Ay, marry, but there is
Hast. Ill befall
Did not the king,
Gloc. What if some patriot, for the public good,
from your scheme, new-mould the state ?
Gloc. You go too far, my lord.
Hast. Your highness' pardon
Gloc. How now! so hot!
hand against my life?
Gloc. Oh, noble Hastings ! Nay, I must embrace you ;