The Project Gutenberg eBook, The Surprising Adventures of Bampfylde Moore Carew, by Unknown This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org Title: The Surprising Adventures of Bampfylde Moore Carew King of the Beggars; containing his Life, a Dictionary of the Cant Language, and many Entertaining Particulars of that Extraordinary Man Author: Unknown Release Date: November 9, 2008 [eBook #27210] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-646-US (US-ASCII) ***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THE SURPRISING ADVENTURES OF BAMPFYLDE MOORE CAREW***
Transcribed from the 1850’s Thomas Allman and Son edition by David Price, email firstname.lastname@example.org
THOMAS ALLMAN AND SON.
W. WALKER AND SON, OTLEY.
Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew was descended from the ancient family of the Carews, son of the Reverend Mr. Theodore Carew, of the parish of Brickley, near Tiverton, in the county of Devon; of which parish he was many years a rector, very much esteemed while living, and at his death universally lamented. Mr. Carew was born in the month of July 1693; and never was there known a more splendid attendance of ladies and gentlemen of the first rank and quality at any baptism in the west of England, than at his: the Hon. Hugh Bampfylde, Esq., who afterwards died of an unfortunate fall from his horse, and the Hon. Major Moore, were both his illustrious godfathers, both of whose names he bears; who sometime contending who should be the president, doubtless presaging the honour that should redound to them from the future actions of our hero, the affair was determined by throwing up a piece of money, p. 6which was won by Mr. Bampfylde; who upon this account presented a large piece of plate, whereon was engraved, in large letters,
BAMPFYLDE MOORE CAREW.
The reverend Mr. Carew had several other children, both sons and daughters, besides Mr. Carew, all of whom he educated in a tender and pious manner; and Mr. Carew was at the age of twelve sent to Tiverton school, where he contracted an intimate acquaintance with some young gentlemen of the first rank in Somersetshire, Devonshire, Cornwall, and Dorsetshire.
The desire of the reader to be informed of the person of the hero of whom they are reading is so natural, we should be guilty of a great neglect, were we to omit satisfying our readers in this respect, more particularly as we can, without making use of a figure in rhetoric, (which is of very great service to many authors,) called amplification; or, in plain English, enlarging, present our readers with a very amiable picture.
The stature of our hero was tall and majestic, his limbs strong and well-proportioned, his features regular, his countenance open and ingenuous, bearing all those characteristical marks which physiognomists assert denote an honest and good-natured mind.
During the first four years of his continuance at Tiverton school, his close application to, and delight in his studies, gave his friends great hopes that he might one day make a good figure in that honourable profession which his father became so p. 7well, for many years, and for which he was designed.
He attained, for his age, a very considerable knowledge in the Latin and Greek tongues; but soon a new exercise or accomplishment engaged all his attention; this was that of hunting, in which our hero soon made a surprising progress; for, besides that agility of limb and courage requisite for leaping over five-barred gates, &c., our hero, by indefatigable study and application, added to it a remarkable cheering halloo to the dogs, of very great service to the exercise, and which, we believe, was peculiar to himself; and, besides this, found out a secret, hitherto known but to himself, of enticing any dog whatever to follow him.
The Tiverton scholars had at this time the command of a fine cry of hounds, whereby Mr. Carew had frequent opportunity of gratifying his inclinations in that diversion. It was then that he entered into a very strict friendship and familiarity with John Martin, Thomas Coleman, John Escott, and other young gentlemen of the best rank and fortune.
The wise Spaniards have a proverb, Tell me who you are with, and I will tell you what you are; and we ourselves say, Birds of a feather flock together. It is generally allowed that proverbs are built upon experience, and contain great truths; and though at this time very young, he contracted no acquaintance, and kept no company, but with young gentlemen of birth and fortune, who were rather superior to himself than beneath him.
p. 8It happened that a farmer, living in a county adjacent to Tiverton, who was a great sportsman, and used to hunt with the Tiverton scholars, came and acquainted them of a fine deer, which he had seen with a collar about his neck, in the fields about his farm, which he supposed to be the favourite deer of some gentleman not far off; this was very agreeable news to the Tiverton scholars, who, with Mr. Carew, John Martin, Thomas Coleman, and John Escott, at their head, went in a great body to hunt it; this happened a short time before the harvest. The chase was very hot, and lasted several hours, and they ran the deer many miles, which did a great deal of damage to the fields of corn that were then almost ripe. Upon the death of the deer and examination of the collar, it was found to belong to Colonel Nutcombe, of the parish of Clayhanger.
Those farmers and gentlemen that sustained the greatest damage came to Tiverton, and complained heavily to Mr. Rayner, the schoolmaster, of the havock made in their fields, which occasioned strict enquiry to be made concerning the ringleaders, who, proving to be our hero and his companions, they were so severely threatened, that, for fear, they absented themselves from school; and the next day, happening to go in the evening to Brick-house, an alehouse, about half a mile from Tiverton, they accidentally fell into company with a society of gipseys, who were there feasting and carousing. This society consisted of seventeen or eighteen persons of both sexes, who that day met there with a full purpose of merriment and jollity; and after a plentiful p. 9meal upon fowls, and other dainty dishes, the flowing cups of October, and cider, went most cheerfully round, and merry songs and country dances crowned the jovial banquet; in short, so great an air of freedom, mirth, and pleasure, appeared in this society, that our youngsters from that time conceived a sudden inclination to enlist into their company; which, when they communicated to the gipseys, they, considering their appearance, behaviour, and education, regarded as only spoke in jest; but as they tarried there all night in their company, and continued in the same resolution the next morning, they were at length induced to believe them to be serious, and accordingly encouraged them, and admitted them into their number; the requisite ceremonials being first gone through, and the proper oaths administered.
The reader may perhaps be surprised at the mention of oaths administered, and ceremonials used, at the entrance of these young gentlemen; but his surprise will lessen when we inform him, that these people are subject to a form of government and laws peculiar to themselves, and though they have no written laws, by which means they avoid all perplexity with lawyers, yet they pay obedience to one who is styled their king; to which great honour we shall hereafter see our hero arrive, having first proved himself worthy of it, by a great number of necessary achievements.
There are, perhaps, no people so completely happy as they are, or enjoy so great a share of liberty. The king is elective by the whole people, p. 10but none are allowed to stand as candidates for that honour, but such as have been long in their society, and perfectly studied the nature and institution of it; they must likewise have given repeated proofs of their personal wisdom, courage and capacity; this is the better known, as they always keep a public record or register of all remarkable (either good or bad) actions performed by any of the society; and they can have no temptation to make choice of any but the most worthy, as their king has no titles or lucrative employments to bestow, which might influence or corrupt their judgment.
The only advantage the king enjoys is, that he is constantly supplied with whatever is necessary for his maintenance, from the contributions of his people; whilst he, in return, directs all his care to the defending and protecting his people from their enemies, in contriving and planning whatever is most likely to promote their welfare and happiness, in seeing a due regard paid to their laws, in registering their memorable actions, and making a due report of all these things at their general assemblies; so that, perhaps, at this time, it is amongst these people only that the office of a king is the same as it was at its first institution;—viz. a father and protector of his people.
The laws of these people are few and simple, but most exactly and punctually observed; the fundamental of which is, that strong love and mutual regard for each member in particular, and for the whole community in general, which is inculcated into them from their earliest infancy; p. 11so that this whole community is connected by stronger bands of love and harmony, than oftentimes subsist even in private families under other governments; this naturally prevents all oppressions, fraud, and over-reachings of one another, so common amongst other people, and totally extinguishes that bitter passion of the mind (the source, perhaps, of most of the other vices) envy; for it is a great and certain truth, that Love worketh no evil.
Their general meetings at stated times, which all are obliged to be present at, is a very strong cement of their love, and indeed of all their other virtues; for, as the general register of their actions, which we have before spoken of, is read at these meetings, those who have deserved well of the community, are honoured by some token or distinction in the sight of all the rest; and those who have done any thing against their fundamental laws, have some mark of ignominy put upon them; for they have no high sense of pecuniary rewards, and they think the punishing of the body of little service towards amending the mind. Experience has shown them, that, by keeping up this nice sense of honour and shame, they are always enabled to keep their community in better order than the most severe corporeal punishments have been able to effect in other governments.
But what has still more tended to preserve their happiness is, that they know no other use of riches than the enjoyment of them; but, as the word is liable to be misconstrued by many of our readers, we think it necessary to inform them, we p. 12do not mean by it that sordid enjoyment which the miser feels when he bolts up his money in a well-secured iron chest, or that delicious pleasure he is sensible of when he counts over his hoarded stores, and finds they are increased with a half-guinea, or even a half-crown; nor do we mean that enjoyment which the well-known Mr. K---,  the man-eater, feels when he draws out his money from his bags, to discount the good bills of some honest but distressed tradesman at fifteen or twenty per cent.
The people we are speaking of are happily ignorant of such enjoyment of money, for they know no other use of it than that of promoting mirth and good humour; for which end they generously bring their gains into a common stock, whereby they whose gains are small have an equal enjoyment with those whose profits are larger, excepting only that a mark of ignominy is affixed on those who do not contribute to the common stock proportionably to their abilities, and the opportunities they have of gain; and this is the source of their uninterrupted happiness; for by this means they have no griping usurer to grind them, lordly possessor to trample on them, nor any envyings to torment them; they have no settled habitations, but, like the Scythians of old, remove from place to place, as often as their conveniency or pleasure p. 13requires it, which renders their life a perpetual scene of the greatest variety.
By what we have said above, and much more that we could add, of the happiness of these people, and of their peculiar attachment to each other, we may account for what has been matter of much surprise to the friends of our hero, viz., his strong attachment, for the space of above forty years, to this community, and his refusing the large offers that have been made to quit their society.—But to return to our history.
Thus was Mr. Carew initiated into the mysteries of a society, which, for antiquity, need give place to none, as is evident from the name, as well as their origin, which they derive from the Egyptians, one of the most ancient and learned people in the world, and that they were persons of more than common learning, who travelled to communicate their knowledge to mankind. Whether the divine Homer himself might not have been of this society, will admit of a doubt, as there is much uncertainty about his birth and education, though nothing is more certain than that he travelled from place to place.
Mr. Carew did not continue long in it before he was consulted in important matters: particularly Madam Musgrove, of Monkton, near Taunton, hearing of his fame, sent for him to consult in an affair of difficulty. When he came, she informed him, that she suspected a large quantity of money was buried somewhere about her house, and if he would acquaint her with the particular place, she would handsomely reward him.
Our hero consulted the secrets of his art upon p. 14this occasion, and after long toil and study informed the lady, that under a laurel-tree in the garden lay the treasure she anxiously sought for; but that her planet of good fortune did not reign till such a day and hour, till which time she should desist from searching for it; the good lady rewarded him very generously with twenty guineas for his discovery. We cannot tell whether at this time our hero was sufficiently initiated in the art, or whether the lady mistook her lucky hour, but the strict regard we pay to truth obliges us to confess, that the lady dug below the roots of the laurel-tree without finding the hidden treasure.
When he was further initiated in the art, he was consulted upon several important matters, and generally gave satisfaction by his sagacious answers. In the meantime, his worthy parents sorrowed for him as one that was no more, not being able to get the least tidings of him, though they publicly advertised him, and sent messengers after him in every direction; till, at the expiration of a year and a half, our hero having repeated accounts of the sorrow and trouble his parents were in upon his account, his heart melted with tenderness, and he repaired to his father’s house, at Brickley, in Devonshire. As he was much disguised, both in habit and countenance, he was not at first known by his parents; but when he discovered himself, joy gushed out in full streams, stopping the power of speech; but the warm tears they bedewed his cheeks with, whilst they imprinted them with kisses, performed the office of the tongue with more expressive eloquence; but the good heart and tender parent will feel this much better than p. 15we can describe. The whole neighbourhood, partook of this joy; and there was nothing for some time but ringing of bells, with public feasting, and other marks of festive joy.
Mr. Carew’s parents did every thing possible to render home agreeable to him; every day he was engaged in some party of pleasure or other, and all his friends strove who should entertain him, so that there seemed nothing wanting to his happiness. But the uncommon pleasure that he had enjoyed in the community he had left, the freedom of their government, the simplicity and sincerity of their manners, the frequent changes of their habitation, the perpetual mirth and good humour that reigned amongst them, and perhaps some secret presages of that high honour which he has since arrived at; all these made too deep an impression to be effaced by any other ideas; his pleasure therefore grew every day more and more tasteless, and he relished none of those entertainments which his friends daily provided for him.
For some time these unsatisfied longings after the community of gipseys preyed upon his mind, his heart being too good to think of leaving his fond parents again, without reluctance. Long did filial piety and his inclinations struggle for the victory; at length the last prevailed, but not till his health had visibly suffered by these inward commotions. One day, therefore, without taking leave of any of his friends, he directed his steps towards Brick-house, at Tiverton, where he had at first entered into the community of the gipseys; and finding some of them there, he joined their company, to the great satisfaction of them, as well as p. 16of himself; they rejoiced greatly at having regained one who was likely to be so useful a member to their community.
We are now entering into the busy part of our hero’s life, where we shall find him acting in various characters, and performing all with propriety, dignity, and decorum.—We shall, therefore, rather choose to account for some of the actions of our hero, by desiring the reader to keep in mind the principles of the government of the mendicants, which are, like those of the Algerines, and other states of Barbary, in a perpetual state of hostility with most other people; so that whatsoever stratagems or deceits they can over-reach them by, are not only allowed by their laws, but considered as commendable and praise-worthy; and, as the Algerines are looked upon as a very honest people by those who are in alliance with them, though they plunder the rest of mankind; and as most other governments have thought that they might very honestly attack any weak neighbouring state, whenever it was convenient for them, and murder forty or fifty thousand of the human species; we hope, to the unprejudiced eye of reason, the government of the gipseys in general, and our hero as a member of it, will not appear in so disadvantageous a light, for exercising a few stratagems to over-reach their enemies, especially when it is considered they never, like other states, do any harm to the persons of their enemies, and nothing considerable to their fortunes.
Our hero being again admitted at the first general assembly of the gipseys, and having taken the proper oaths of allegiance to the sovereign, was p. 17soon after sent out by him on a cruise upon their enemies.
Our hero’s wit was now set to work, by what stratagems he might best succeed. The first that occurred to his thoughts was that of equipping himself with an old pair of trowsers, enough of a jacket to cover his nakedness, stockings such as nature gave, shoes (or rather the body of shoes, for soles they had none) which had leaks enough to sink a first rate man of war, and a woollen cap, so black that one might more safely swear it had not been washed since Noah’s flood, than any electors can that they receive no bribes. Being thus attired, our hero changed his manners with his dress; he forgot entirely his family, education, and politeness, and became neither more nor less than an unfortunate shipwrecked seaman.
Here, if we may be allowed to compare great things with small, we could wish that all orders of men were strict imitators of our hero; we mean that they would put on the characteristics and qualifications of their employment, at the same time they invest themselves with the ensigns of it; that the divine, when he puts on his sacred and venerable habit, would clothe himself with piety, goodness, gentleness, long-suffering, charity, temperance, contempt of filthy lucre, and other godlike qualifications of his office; that the judge, at the time he puts on his ermined robes, would put on righteousness and equity as an upper garment, with an integrity of mind more white and spotless than the fairest ermine; that the grave physician, when he puts on his large perriwig, would put p. 18under it the knowledge of the human frame, of the virtues and effects of his medicines, of the signs and nature of diseases, with the most approved and experienced forms of cure; that the mechanic, when he puts on his leather or woollen apron, put on diligence, frugality, temperance, modesty, and good nature; and that kings themselves, when the crown, which is adorned with pearls and many precious stones, is put on their heads, would put on at the same time the more inestimable gems of all the precious virtues; that they would remember at times, they were invested with the dalmatica at their coronation, only as an emblem of the ornament of a good life and holy actions; that the rod they received was the rod of virtue and equity, to encourage and make much of the godly, and to terrify the wicked; to show the way to those that go astray, and to offer the hand to those that fall; to repress the proud, and to lift up the lowly; and the sword they were girt with, was to protect the liberties of their people, to defend and help widows and orphans, restore the things which have gone to decay, maintain those which are restored, and confirm things that are in good order.
As to our hero, he so fully put on the character of a shipwrecked seaman, that in his first excursion he gained a very considerable booty, having likewise ingeniously imitated the passes and certificates that were necessary for him to travel with unmolested.
After about a month’s travel, he accidentally, at Kingsbridge, in Devonshire, met with Coleman, his late school-fellow, one of those who entered p. 19with him into the community, as before related, but had, after a year and a half’s sojourn, left them and returned to his friends: however, not finding that satisfaction among them as with the gipseys, he had again joined that people—great was the joy, therefore, of these two friends at their meeting, and they soon agreed to travel together for some time; and accordingly proceeded to Totness, from thence to the city of Exeter, where they raised a contribution in one day amounting to several pounds.
Having obtained all he could desire from this stratagem, his fruitful invention soon hinted another. He now became the plain honest country farmer, who, living in the Isle of Sheppy, in Kent, had the misfortune to have his grounds overflowed, and all his cattle drowned. His habit was now neat but rustic; his air and behaviour simple and inoffensive; his speech in the Kentish dialect; his countenance dejected; his tale pitiful—wondrous pitiful; a wife and seven helpless infants being partakers of his misfortunes; so that if his former stratagem answered his wishes, this did still more so, he now getting seldom less than a guinea a day.
Having raised a considerable booty by these two stratagems, he made the best of his way towards Straton, in Devonshire, where was soon to be held a general assembly of the gipseys: here he was received with great applause, on account of the successful stratagems he had executed, and he had an honourable mark of distinction bestowed upon him, being seated near the king.
Though our hero, by means of these stratagems, abounded with all the pleasures he could desire, p. 20yet he began now to reflect with himself on that grand and noble maxim of life, that we are not born for ourselves only, but indebted to all mankind, to be of as great use and service to them, as our capacities and abilities will enable us to be; he, therefore, gave a handsome gratuity to a famous rat-catcher (who assumed the honour of being rat-catcher to the king,) to be initiated into that, and the still more useful secret of curing madness in dogs or cattle.
Our hero, by his close application, soon attained so considerable a knowledge in his profession, that he practised with much success and applause, to the great advantage of the public in general, not confining the good effects of his knowledge to his own community only, but extending them universally to all sorts of people, wheresoever they were wanted; for though we have before observed that the mendicants are in a constant state of hostility with all other people, and Mr. Carew was as alert as any one in laying all manner of schemes and stratagems to carry off a booty from them; yet he thought, as a member of the grand society of human kind, he was obliged to do them all the good in his power, when it was not opposite to the interest of that particular community of which he was a member.
Mr. Carew’s invention being never at a loss, he now formed a new stratagem; to execute which, he exchanged his habit, shirt, &c., for only an old blanket; shoes and stockings he laid aside, because they did not suit his present purpose. Being thus accoutred, or rather unaccoutred, he was now no more than Poor Mad Tom, whom the foul fiend p. 21had led through fire and through flame, through ford and whirlpool, over bog and quagmire, that hath laid knives under his pillow, and halters in his pew, set ratsbane by his porridge, made him proud at heart to ride on a bay trotting horse over four-inch bridges, to curse his own shadow for a traitor; who eats the swimming frog, the toad, the tadpole, the wall-newt, and the water-newt; that in the fury of his heart, when the foul fiend rages, swallows the old rat and ditch dog, drinks the green mantle off the standing pool;
And mice and rats, and such small gear,
Have been Tom’s food for seven long year.
O do, de, do, de, do, de; bless thee from whirlwind, star-blasting, and taking; do poor Tom some charity, whom the foul fiend vexes; there could I have him now, and there, and there again, and there; through the sharp hawthorn blows the cold wind; Tom’s a-cold! who gives any thing to poor Tom?—In this character, and with such like expressions, our hero entered the house both of great and small, claiming kindred to them, and committing all manner of frantic actions; such as beating himself, offering to eat coals of fire, running against the wall, and tearing to pieces those garments that were given him to cover his nakedness; by which means he raised very considerable contributions.
But these different habits and characters were still of farther use to our hero, for by their means he had a better opportunity of seeing the world, and knowing mankind, than most of our youths p. 22who make the grand tour; for, as he had none of those petty amusements and raree-shows, which so much divert our young gentlemen abroad, to engage his attention, it was wholly applied to the study of mankind, their various passions and inclinations; and he made the greater improvement in his study, as in many of his characters they acted before him without reserve or disguise. He saw in little and plain houses hospitality, charity and compassion, the children of frugality; and found under gilded and spacious roofs, littleness, uncharitableness and inhumanity, the offspring of luxury and riot; he saw servants waste their master’s substance, and that there were no greater nor more crafty thieves than domestic ones; and met with masters who roared out for liberty abroad, acting the arbitrary tyrants in their own houses:—he saw ignorance and passion exercise the rod of justice; oppression, the handmaid of power; self-interest outweighing friendship and honesty in the opposite scale; pride and envy spurning and trampling on what was more worthy than themselves;—he saw the pure white robes of truth sullied with the black hue of hypocrisy and dissimulation; he sometimes, too, met much riches unattended by pomp and pride, but diffusing themselves in numberless unexhausted streams, conducted by the hands of two lovely servants, Goodness and Beneficence;—and he saw honesty, integrity and goodness of mind, inhabitants of the humble cot of poverty.
All these observations afforded him no little pleasure, but he felt a much greater in the indulgence of the emotions of filial piety, paying his parents frequent visits, unknown to them, in different p. 23disguises; at which time, the tenderness he saw them express in their inquiries after him (it being their constant custom so to do of all travellers) always melted him into real tears.
It has been remarked, that curiosity, or the desire of knowledge, is that which most distinguishes man from the brute, and the greater the mind is, the more insatiable is that passion: we may, without flattery, say no man had a more boundless one than our hero; for, not satisfied with the observations he had made in England and Wales, (which we are well assured were many more than are usually made by gentlemen before they travel into foreign parts,) he now resolved to see other countries and manners. He was the more inclined to this, as he imagined it would enable him to be of greater service to the community of which he was a member, by rendering him capable of executing some of his stratagems with much greater success.
He communicated this design to his school-fellow, Escott, one of those who joined the gipseys with him, (for neither of the four wholly quitted the community). Escott very readily agreed to accompany him in his travels, and there being a vessel ready to sail for Newfoundland, tying at Dartmouth, where they then were, they agreed to embark on board her. Nothing remarkable happened in their passage which relates to our hero; we shall therefore pass it by, and land him safe in Newfoundland. Having remained there during the fishing season, he acquired all the information he possibly could, and which he thought might be useful to him, and returned in the same vessel to Dartmouth, from whence he had at first sailed, p. 24bringing with him a surprising fierce and large dog, which he had enticed to follow him, and made as gentle as a lamb, by an art peculiar to himself. Our hero was received with great joy by his fellow gipseys, and they were loud in his praises, when they understood he had undertaken this voyage to enable him to deceive his enemies with the greater success. He accordingly, in a few days, went out on a cruise in the character of a shipwrecked sailor, lost in a vessel homeward bound from Newfoundland, sometimes belonging to Pool, sometimes to Dartmouth, at other times to other ports, and under such or such commander, according as the newspapers gave account of such melancholy accidents.
If the booty he got before under this character was considerable, it was much more so now, for being able to give an exact account of Newfoundland, the settlements, harbours, fishery, and the inhabitants thereof, he applied with great confidence to masters of vessels, and gentlemen well acquainted with those parts; so that those to whom before his prudence would not let him apply, now became his greatest benefactors, as the perfect account he gave of the country engaged them to give credit to all he asserted, and made them very liberal in his favour.
It was about this time our hero became sensible of the power of love; we mean of that sort which has more of the mind than the body, and is tender, delicate and constant; the object of which remains constantly fixed in the mind, and will not admit of any partner with it. It was in the town of Newcastle, so famous for its coal-works, which p. 25our hero visited out of curiosity, appearing there undisguised and making a very genteel appearance, that he became enamoured with the daughter of Mr. Gray, an eminent surgeon there. This young lady had charms perhaps equal to any of her sex; and we might in that style, which one, who calls himself an author of the first rate, calls the sublime, say, “Here was whiteness, which no lilies, ivory, nor alabaster could match. The finest cambric might be supposed from envy to cover that bosom, which was much whiter than itself;” but we must confess we always feel a cold horror shoot through our limbs at the reading of this puerile sublime, and we make no doubt but many other readers do the same, as it greatly tends to make our hearts ache by putting us in mind of what our posteriors have suffered for us at school. We shall therefore content ourselves by saying, this lady had charms sufficient to captivate the heart of any man not unsusceptible of love; and they made so deep an impression upon our hero, that they wholly effaced every object which before had created any desire in him, and never permitted any other to raise them afterwards; and, wonderful to tell, we have after about thirty years enjoyment, seen him lament her occasional absence almost with tears, and talk of her with all the fondness of one who had been in love but three days. Our hero tried all love’s soft persuasions with his fair one in an honourable way; and, as his person was very engaging, and his appearance genteel, he did not find her greatly averse to the proposals. As he was aware that his being of the community of the gipseys might prejudice her against him without p. 26examination, he passed with her for the mate of a collier’s vessel, in which he was supported by Captain L---n of Dartmouth, an old acquaintance of our hero’s, who then commanded a vessel lying at Newcastle, and acknowledged him for his mate. These assertions satisfied the young lady very well, and she at length consented to exchange the tender care and love of a parent for that of a husband. The reader may perhaps be surprised that she did not make any farther inquiries about him; it is therefore necessary that we should inform him, that our hero had engaged on his side a very eloquent and persuasive advocate or counsellor, for we know not which denomination most properly belongs to him; one, though still beardless, existed as soon as the first woman was created, and has had ever since, till within this last century, very great practice in the business of uniting both sexes for life; but of late years a neighbouring counsellor, named self-interest, has by underhand dealings, false insinuations, and mean suggestions, taken away the greatest part of his business, so that he is seldom retained on either side. Our hero, however, engaged him in his service, and he pleaded so strongly for him in the young lady, that he removed all her objections, and silenced all her scruples, and at last persuaded her to leave her home and venture on board Captain L---n’s vessel with her lover; for, though this counsellor, according to a very good picture of him drawn by a famous master, has more of the wanton roguish smiles of a boy in his countenance, than the formality, wisdom, and gravity of those counsellors whom thou hast perhaps seen in Westminster-hall; p. 27and never wore one of those ponderous perukes which are so essential to the knowledge, wisdom, and eloquence of those gentlemen; yet we are assured none of them ever equalled him in persuasive arguments, removing of difficulties, and silencing of doubts; for he indeed differs in practice from most of the counsellors we ever heard of: for, as these are apt to puzzle and perplex their clients by their answers, and make intricate what was plain before, on the contrary, the gentleman we are speaking of had a wonderful faculty of making the greatest difficulties plain and easy, and always answered every objection and scruple to the entire satisfaction of his client.
The lover and his fair one being on board, they soon hoisted sail, and the very winds being willing to favour these two happy lovers, they had an exceeding quick passage to Dartmouth, where they landed. Our hero being now no longer able to conceal his being a member of the community of gipseys, after some previous introduction, declared it to the young lady, who was not a little surprised and troubled at it; but the counsellor we have already spoken of being near at hand, soon composed her mind, by suggesting to her the worthy family her lover was sprung from; that the community of the gipseys was more happy, and less disreputable than she imagined, that the person of her lover was quite amiable, and that he had good nature, and love enough to make her happy in any condition.
As these suggestions entirely satisfied her, the lovers in a few days set out for Bath, where they lawfully solemnized their nuptials with great gaiety p. 28and splendour, and were those two persons whom many of the old slanders at Bath remembered for many years after to have made such an eclat, but nobody could, at the time, conjecture who they were, which was the occasion of much speculation and many false surmises.
We cannot conclude on this head, but with the deserved praises of our hero, from whose mouth we have had repeated assurance, that, during their voyage to Dartmouth, and their journey from thence to Bath, not the least indignity was offered to the innocence or modesty of his dear Miss Gray.
Our lovers began to be at length weary of the same repeated rounds of pleasure at Bath, for at that time the wit of man had not reached so high as the invention of that most charming, entertaining, never-cloying diversion, called E, O, which seems to have been reserved among the secrets of fate to do honour to the present age; for upon the nicest scrutiny, we are quite convinced it is entirely new, and cannot find the least traces of its being borrowed from any nation under the sun; for, though we have with great pains and labour inquired into all the games and diversions of the ancients; though we have followed untutored Indians through all their revels, and though we have accurately examined into the dull pleasures of the uncouth Hottentots; yet in all these we find either some marks of ingenuity to exercise and refresh the mind, or something of labour to invigorate the body;—we therefore could not avoid interrupting our history, to do honour to this truly interesting and original game.
Our lovers having left Bath, visited next the p. 29city of Bristol, where they stayed some time, and caused more speculation there than they had before done at Bath, and did as much damage to that city as the famous Lucullus did at Rome, on his return from his victorious expedition; we have some reason to think they first introduced the love of dress among those plain and frugal citizens. After some stay here, they made a tour through Somerset and Dorset to Hampshire, where they paid a visit to an uncle of our hero’s living then at Dorchester, near Gosport, who was a clergyman of distinguished merit and character; here they were received with great politeness and hospitality, and abode a considerable time.
His uncle took this opportunity of making use of every argument to persuade him to quit the community of the gipseys; but our hero was so thoroughly fixed in his principles, that even that argument which oftentimes convinces patriots in a few hours, that all they said and did before was wrong, that kings have a divine right to grind the faces of their subjects, and that power which lays its iron hand on Nabal’s goodly vineyard, and says, “This is mine, for so I will,” is preferable to heavenly liberty, which says to every man, “Possess what is thine own, reap what thou hast sown, gather what thou hast planted, eat, drink, and lie down secure;” even this powerful argument had no effect upon our hero; for, though his uncle made him very lucrative offers for the present, and future promises of making him heir of all his possessions, yet remembering his engagements with the gipseys, he rejected them all; and reflecting that he had long lived useless to that community, p. 30he began to prepare for his departure from his uncle’s, in order to make some incursions on the enemy.
To do this with more effect, he bethought himself of a new stratagem. He therefore equipped himself in a loose black gown, puts on a band, a large white peruke, and a broad-brimmed hat;—his whole deportment was agreeable to his dress;—his pace was solemn and slow, his countenance thoughtful and grave, his eyes turned on the ground—but now and then raised in seeming ejaculations to heaven: in every look and action he betrayed his want, but at the same time seemed overwhelmed with that shame which modest merit feels, when it is obliged to solicit the cold hand of charity; this behaviour excited the curiosity of many gentlemen, clergy, &c., to inquire into the circumstances of his misfortunes; but it was with difficulty they could engage him to relate them, it being with much seeming reluctance that he acquainted them with his having exercised for many years the sacred office of a clergyman at Aberistwith, a parish in Wales; but that the government changing, he had preferred quitting his benefice, to taking an oath contrary to his principles and conscience. This relation he accompanied with frequent sighs, deep marks of adoration of the ways of Providence, and warm expressions of his firm trust and reliance in its goodness and faithfulness, with high encomiums on the inward satisfaction of a good conscience. When he discoursed with any clergyman, or other person of literature, he would now and then introduce some Latin or Greek sentences, that were applicable to what they were p. 31talking about, which gave his hearers a high opinion of his learning; all this, and his thorough knowledge of those persons whom it was proper to apply to, made this stratagem succeed even beyond his own expectations. But now, hearing of a vessel bound to Philadelphia, on board of which were many Quakers, being cast away on the coast of Ireland, he laid aside his gown, cassock, and band, clothes himself in a plain suit, pulls the button from his hat, and flaps it on every side; his countenance was now demure, his language unadorned with any flowers of speech, and the words You and Sir, he seemed to hold in abomination; his hat was moved to none, for, though under misfortunes, he would not think of bowing the knee to Baal.
With these qualifications, he addressed himself to persons of the denomination of Quakers with great success (for indeed it is to be wished that all other sects would imitate them in their readiness to relieve their brethren); and hearing that there was to be a great meeting of them from all parts, at a place called Thorncombe, in Devonshire, he makes the best of his way there; and with a demure look and modest assurance enters the assembly, where, making his case known, and satisfying them, by his behaviour, of his being one of their sect, they made a very considerable subscription for his relief.
So active was the mind of our hero, that he was never more happy than when engaged in some adventure or other; therefore, when he had no opportunity of putting any great stratagem in execution, he would amuse himself with those which did not require so great a share of art and ingenuity. p. 32Whenever he heard of any melancholy accident by fire; he immediately repaired to the place where it happened, and there, remarking very accurately the spot, inquired into the cause of it, and getting an exact information of the trades, characters, families, and circumstances of the unhappy sufferers, he immediately assumed the person and name of one of them; and burning some part of his coat and hat, as an ocular demonstration of his narrow escape, he made the best of his way to places at some distance, and there passed for one who had been burnt out; and to gain credit, showed a paper signed with the names of several gentlemen in the neighbourhood of the place where the fire happened, recommending him as an honest unhappy sufferer, by which he got considerable sums.
Under this character, he had once the boldness to address Justice Hall, of Exmouth, in Devon, the terror and professed enemy of every order of the gipseys; however, our hero managed so artfully, though he went through a strict examination, that he at last convinced his worship that he was an honest miller, whose house, mill, and whole substance had been consumed by fire, occasioned by the negligence of an apprentice boy, and was accordingly relieved by the justice.
Coming one day to Squire Portman’s, at Brinson, near Blandford, in the character of a famous rat-catcher, with a hairy cap upon his head, a buff girdle about his waist, and a tame rat in a little box by his side, he boldly marched up to the house in this disguise, though his person was well known by the family, and meeting in the court with Mr. Portman, the Rev. Mr. Bryant, and several other p. 33gentlemen whom he well knew, but did not suspect he should be known by them, he accosted them as a rat-catcher, asking if their Honours had any rats to kill. Do you understand your business well? replied Mr. Portman. Yes, and please your honour; I have followed it many years, and have been employed in his majesty’s yards and ships. Well, go in and get something to eat; and after dinner we will try your abilities.
Our hero was accordingly placed at the second table to dinner, and very handsomely entertained; after which he was called into a great parlour, among a large company of gentlemen and ladies. Well, honest Mr. Rat-catcher, said Mr. Portman, can you lay any schemes to kill the rats, without hurting my dogs? Yes, boldly replied Mr. Carew, I shall lay it where even cats can’t climb to reach it. And what countryman are you, pray? A Devonshire man, please your honour. What may be your name? Our hero now perceiving, by the smiles and whispering of the gentlemen, that he was known, replied very composedly, B, a, m, p, f, y, l, d, e, M, o, o, r, e, C, a, r, e, w. This occasioned a good deal of mirth; and Mr. Carew asking what scabby sheep had infected the whole flock? was told, Parson Bryant was the man who had discovered him, none of the other gentlemen knowing him under his disguise: upon which, turning to the parson, he asked him if he had forgotten good king Charles’s rules? Mr. Pleydell, of St. Andrew’s, Milbourn, expressed a pleasure at seeing the famous Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew, saying he had never seen him before. Yes, but p. 34you have, replied he, and gave me a suit of clothes. Mr. Pleydell testified some surprise at this, and desired to know when it was. Mr. Carew asked him if he did not remember a poor wretch met him one day at his stable-door with an old stocking round his head instead of a cap, and a woman’s old ragged mantle on his shoulders, no shirt on his back, nor stockings to his legs, and scarce any shoes on his feet; and that he asked him if he was mad? to which he replied No; but a poor unfortunate man, cast away on the coast, and taken up, with eight others, by a Frenchman, the rest of the crew, sixteen in number, being all drowned; and that Mr. Pleydell having asked what countryman he was, gave him a guinea and a suit of clothes. Mr. Pleydell said he well remembered such a poor object. Well, replied our hero, that object was no other than the rat-catcher now before you: at which all the company laughed very heartily. Well, said Mr. Pleydell, I will bet a guinea I shall know you again, come in what shape you will: the same said Mr. Seymour, of Handford. Some of the company asserting to the contrary of this, they desired our hero to try his ingenuity upon them, and then to discover himself, to convince them of it.
This being agreed upon, and having received a handsome contribution of this company, he took his leave; but Parson Bryant followed him out, and acquainted him that the same company, and many more, would be at Mr. Pleydell’s on such a day, and advised him to make use of that opportunity to deceive them all together; which our hero soon resolved to do. He therefore revolved p. 35in his mind what stratagem was most likely to succeed: at length he fixed upon one, which he thought could not fail answering his purpose.
When the day was come, the barber was called in to make his face as smooth as his art could do, and a woman’s gown and other female accoutrements of the largest size were provided for him. Having jumped into his petticoats, pinned a large dowde under his chin, and put a high-crowned hat on his head, he made a figure so comical that even Hogarth’s humour can scarcely parallel; yet our hero thought himself of something else to render his disguise more impenetrable: he therefore borrowed a little hump-backed child of a tinker, and two more of some others of his community. There remained now only in what situation to place the children, and it was quickly resolved to tie two to his back, and to take the other in his arms.
Thus accoutred, and thus hung with helpless infants, he marched forwards for Mr. Pleydell’s; coming up to the door, he put his hand behind him, and pinched one of the children, which set it a roaring; this gave the alarm to the dogs, so that between their barking and the child’s crying, the whole family was sufficiently disturbed. Out came the maid, crying, Carry away the children, old woman, they disturb the ladies. God bless their ladyships, I am the poor unfortunate grandmother to these poor helpless infants, whose dear mother and all they had was burnt at the dreadful fire at Kirton, and hope the good ladies, for God’s sake, will bestow something on the poor famishing starving infants. This moving story was accompanied with tears; upon which, the maid ran in to acquaint p. 36the ladies with this melancholy tale, while the good grandmother kept pinching one or other of the children, that they might play their parts to greater perfection; the maid soon returned with a half crown from the ladies, and some good broth, which he went into the court-yard to eat, (understanding the gentlemen were not in the house,) and got one of the under-servants, whom he met, to give some to the children on his back. He had not long been there, before the gentlemen all came in together, who accosted him with, Where did you come from, my good old woman? From Kirton, please your honours, where the poor unfortunate mother of these helpless babes was burnt to death by the flames, and all they had consumed.
D---n you, said one of the gentlemen, (who is well known by the name of Worthy Sir, and was particularly acquainted with Mr. Carew,) there has been more money collected for Kirton than ever Kirton was worth; however, he gave this good old grandmother a shilling, the other gentlemen likewise relieved her, commiserating her age, and her burden of so many helpless infants; not one of them discovering our hero in the old woman, who received their alms very thankfully, and pretended to go away.
But the gentlemen were not got into the house before their ears were saluted with a “tantivy, tantivy,” and halloo to the dogs, upon which they turned about, supposing it to be some brother sportsman, but seeing nobody, Worthy Sir swore the old woman they had relieved was Carew; a servant therefore was dispatched to bring her back; and she was brought into the parlour among the p. 37gentlemen, where, being examined, she confessed herself to be the famous Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew, which made the gentlemen very merry, and they were now all employed in untying the children from his back, and observing the features and dress of this grandmother, which afforded them sufficient entertainment. They afterwards rewarded our hero for the mirth he procured them.
In the same manner he raised a contribution of Mr. Jones, of Ashton near Bristol, twice in one day, who had maintained, with a gentleman of his acquaintance, that he could not be so deceived. In the morning, with a sooty face, leather apron, a dejected countenance, and a woollen cap, he was generously relieved as an unfortunate blacksmith, whose all had been consumed by fire: in the afternoon he exchanged his logs for crutches; his countenance was now pale and sickly, his gestures very expressive of pain, his complaints lamentable, a poor unfortunate tinner, disabled from maintaining himself, a wife, and seven children, by the damps and hardships he had suffered in the mines; and so well did he paint his distress, that the disabled tinner was now as generously relieved as the unfortunate blacksmith had been in the morning.
Being now near the city of Bath, where he had not long before made so great a figure with his new married bride, he was resolved to visit it in a very different shape and character; he therefore tied up one of his legs behind him, and supplied its place with a wooden one, and putting on a false beard, assumed the character of a poor old cripple. In this disguise he had an opportunity of entertaining p. 38himself with the different receptions he met with from every order of men now, from what he had done before in his fine rich clothes. The rich, who before saluted him with their hats and compliments, now spurned him out of their way; the gamesters overlooked him, thinking he was no fish for their net; the chairmen, instead of Please your honour, d---d him; and the pumpers, who attentively marked his nod before, now denied him a glass of water. Many of the clergy, those disciples of humility, looked upon him with a supercilious brow; the ladies too, who had before strove who should be his partner at the balls, could not bear the sight of so shocking a creature: thus despised is poverty and rags, though sometimes the veil of real merit; and thus caressed and flattered is finery, though perhaps a covering for shame, poverty of soul, and abandoned profligacy. One character alone vouchsafed to look upon this contemptible object; the good man looked upon him with an eye melting into tenderness and soft compassion, while at the same time the hand which was stretched out to relieve him, showed the heart felt all the pangs which it supposed him to feel. But, notwithstanding the almost general contempt, he raised very considerable contributions; for, as some tossed him money out of pride, others to get rid of his importunity, and a few, as above, out of a good heart, it amounted to no small sum by the end of the season.
It is almost unnecessary to inform the reader, that these successful stratagems gained him high applause and honour in the company of the gipseys: he soon became the favourite of their king, p. 39who was very old and decrepid, and had always some honourable mark of distinction assigned him at their public assemblies. These honours and applauses were so many fresh spurs to his ingenuity and industry; so certain it is, that wherever those qualities are honoured, and publicly rewarded, though but by an oaken garland, there industry will outwork itself, and ingenuity will exceed the common bounds of art. Our hero, therefore, was continually planning new stratagems, and soon executed a very bold one on his grace the Duke of Bolton. Coming to his seat near Basingstoke, in Hampshire, he dressed himself in a sailor’s ragged habit, and knocking at the gate, desired of the porter, with a composed and assured countenance, admittance to the duke, or at least that the porter would give his grace a paper which he held in his hand; but, as he did not apply in a proper manner to this great officer, (who we think may not improperly be styled the turnkey of the gate) as he did not show him that passport which can open every gate, pass by the surliest porter, and get admittance even to kings, neither himself nor paper could gain any entrance. However, he was not disheartened with this, but waiting near the gate for some time, he at last saw a servant come out, whom he followed, and, telling him that he was a very unfortunate man, desired he would be so kind as to introduce him where he might speak to his grace. As this servant had no interest in locking up his master, for that belonged to the porter only, he very readily complied with his request, as soon as the porter was off his stand; which he accordingly did, introducing him into p. 40a hall, where the duke was to pass through soon. He had not been long there before the duke came in, upon which he clapped his knee to the ground, and very graciously offered a paper to his hand for acceptance, which was a petition, setting forth that the unfortunate petitioner, Bampfylde Moore Carew, was supercargo of a large vessel that was cast away coming from Sweden, in which were his whole effects, and none of which he had been able to save. The duke seeing the name of Bampfylde Moore Carew, and knowing those names to belong to families of the greatest worth and note in the west of England, inquired of what family he was, and how he became entitled to those honourable names? He replied, they were those of his godfathers, the Honourable Hugh Bampfylde, and the Honourable Major Moore. The duke then asked him several questions about his friends and relations, all of which he answers very fully; and the duke expressing some surprise that he should apply for relief in his misfortunes to any but his own family, who were so well able to assist him, he replied, he had disobliged them by some follies in his youth, and had not seen them for some years, but was now returning to them. Many more questions did the duke, and a lady who was present, ask him; all of which he answered to their satisfaction.
As this was not a great while after his becoming a member of the community of the gipseys, the duke had never heard that any of the noble family of the Carews was become one of those people; and was very glad to have it in his power to oblige any of that family; he therefore treated p. 41him with respect, and called a servant to conduct him into an inner room, where the duke’s barber waited on him to shave him. Presently after came in a footman, who brought in a good suit of trimmed clothes, a fine Holland shirt, and all the other parts of dress suitable to these. As soon as he had finished dressing, he was introduced to the duke again, who complimented him on his genteel appearance, and not without reason, as few did more honour to dress. He was now desired to sit down by the duke, with whom were many other persons of quality, who were all greatly taken with his person and behaviour, and very much condoled his misfortunes; so that a collection was soon made for him to the amount of ten guineas. The duke, being engaged to go out in the afternoon, desired him to stay there that night, and gave orders that he should be handsomely entertained, leaving his gentleman to keep him company; but Mr. Carew, probably not liking his company so well as the duke’s, took an opportunity, soon after the duke was gone, to set out unobserved towards Basingstoke, where he immediately went into a house which he knew was frequented by some of his community. The master of the house, who saw him entering the door, cried out, Here’s his Grace the Duke of Bolton coming in! upon which there was no small hurry amongst the company. As soon as he entered, he ordered the liquor to flow very plentifully at his private cost; his brethren discovering who he was, were greatly amazed at the appearance he made, so different from the usual custom of their order; but when he had informed them fully of the bold stratagem he had p. 42executed, the whole place resounded with applause, and every one acknowledged he was the most worthy of succeeding their present good old and respected king.
As our hero’s thoughts were bent on making still greater advantage of his stratagem, he did not stay long with his brethren, but went to a reputable inn, where he lodged, and set out the next morning for Salisbury; here he presented his petition to the mayor, bishop, and other gentlemen of great note and fortune, (applying to none but such who were so,) and acquainted them with the favours he had received from his grace the Duke of Bolton. The gentlemen, having such ocular demonstration of the duke’s great liberality, treated him with great complaisance and respect, and relieved him very generously, not presuming to offer any small alms to one whom the Duke of Bolton had thought so worthy of his notice. In the same manner, and with the same success, he visited Lord Arundel, Sir Edward Bouverie, and many other gentlemen in the counties of Wilts, Dorset, and Somerset. Coming into Devonshire, his native country, he visited all his friends and most intimate acquaintance in that part, and was relieved by them, not one of them discovering this unfortunate supercargo to be Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew. Being one morning near the seat of his friend Sir William Courtney, he was resolved to pay him three visits that day: he went therefore to a house frequented by his order, and there pulled off his fine clothes, and put on a parcel of rags; in this dress he moved towards Sir William’s: there, with a piteous moan, a dismal countenance, p. 43and a deplorable tale, he got half-a-crown of that gentleman, as a man who had met with misfortunes at sea; at noon he put on a leather apron, a coat which seemed scorched by the fire, with a dejected countenance applied again, and was relieved as an unfortunate shoemaker, who had been burned out of his house, and all he had; in the afternoon he went again in his trimmed clothes, and desiring admittance to Sir William, with a modest grace and submissive eloquence he repeated his misfortunes as the supercargo of a vessel which had been cast away, and his whole effects lost, at the same time mentioning the kindness he had received from his grace the Duke of Bolton. Sir William, seeing his genteel appearance and behaviour, treated him with that respect which the truly great will always pay to those who supplicate their assistance, and generously relieved him, presenting him with a guinea at his departure. There happened to be at that time a great number of the neighbouring gentlemen and clergy at dinner with Sir William, not one of whom discovered who this supercargo was, except the Reverend Mr. Richards, who did not make it known till he was gone; upon which Sir William dispatched a servant after him, to desire him to come back. When he entered the room again, Sir William and the rest of the company were very merry with him, and he was desired to sit down and give them an account by what stratagem he had got all his finery, and what success he had with it, which he did; after which he asked Sir William if he had not bestowed half-a-crown that morning on a beggar, and at noon relieved a poor unfortunate p. 44shoemaker. I remember, replied Sir William, that I bestowed such alms on a poor ragged wretch. Well, said Mr. Carew, that ragged wretch was no other than the supercargo now before you. Sir William scarcely crediting this, Mr. Carew withdrew, and putting on the same rags, came again with the same piteous moan, dismal countenance, and deplorable tale, as he had done in the morning, which fully convinced Sir William that he was the same man, and occasioned much diversion in the company; he was however introduced again, and seated among them in his rags; Sir William being one of the few who pay a greater regard to the man than the dress, can discern and support merit under rags, and despise poverty of soul and worthlessness in embroidery; but, notwithstanding the success of this stratagem, our hero always looked upon it as one of the most unfortunate in his whole life; for, after he had been at Sir William’s, as above-mentioned, coming to Stoke Gabriel, near Totness, on a Sunday, and having done that which discovered the nakedness of Noah, he went to the Reverend Mr. Osburn, the minister of the parish, and requested the thanksgivings of the church for the wonderful preservation of himself, and the whole ship’s crew, in the imminent danger of a violent tempest of thunder and lightning, which destroyed the vessel they were aboard of. Though Mr. Osburn knew him very well, yet he had no suspicion of its being him in disguise, therefore readily granted his request; and not only so, but recommending him to his parishioners, a handsome collection was made for him by the congregation, which he had generosity p. 45enough to distribute among the poor of the parish, reserving but a small part to himself. Though this was bringing good out of evil, he still speaks of it (after above thirty years lapse since the commission) with the greatest regret and compunction of mind; for he is sensible, that though he can deceive man, he cannot deceive God, whose eyes penetrate into every place, and mark all our actions, and who is a Being too awful to be jested with.
It was about this time the good old king of the mendicants, named Clause Patch, well known in the city of London, and most parts of England, finished a life of true glory, being spent in promoting the welfare of his people. A little before his death, finding the decays of nature increase every day, and his final dissolution approach, he called together all his children, to the number of eighteen, and summoned as many of his subjects as were within a convenient distance, being willing that the last spark of his life should go out in the service of his people; this summons was obeyed with heavy hearts by his loving subjects, and, at the day and place appointed, a great number assembled together.
The venerable old king was brought in a high chair, and placed in the midst of them, his children standing next to him, and his subjects behind them. Reader, if thou hast ever seen that famous picture of Seneca bleeding to death in the bath, with his friends and disciples standing round him, then mayest thou form some idea of this assembly: such was the lively grief, such the profound veneration, such the solemn attention that appeared in every countenance; but we can give p. 46thee no adequate idea of the inward joy which the good old king felt at his seeing such unfeigned marks of love in his subjects, which he considered as so many testimonies of his own virtues; for, certain it is that, when kings are fathers of their people, their subjects will have for them more than the filial love or veneration of sons. The mind of man cannot conceive any thing so august, as that of a king beloved by his subjects. Could kings but taste this pleasure at their first mounting the throne, instead of drinking of the intoxicating cup of power, we should see them considering their subjects as children, and themselves the fathers, to nourish, instruct, and provide for them as a flock, and themselves the shepherds to bring them to pleasant pastures, refreshing streams, and secure folds; for some time the king of the mendicants sat contemplating these emotions of his subjects, then bending forward, thus addressed them:—
“Children and friends, or rather may I call you all my children, as I regard you all with a parental love, I have taken you from your daily employments, that you may all eat and drink with me before I die. I am not courtier enough yet, however, to make my favours an honest loss to my friends; but, before you depart, the book shall be examined, and every one of you shall receive from my privy purse, the same sum that you made by your business this day of the last week. Let not this honest act of generosity displease my heirs; it is the last waste I shall make of their stores: the rest of what I die possessed of is theirs by right, but my counsel, though p. 47directed to them only, shall be of public good to all. The good success, my dear children, with which it has pleased heaven to bless my industry in this our calling, has given me the power of bestowing one hundred pounds on each of you, a small, but improvable fortune, and of most use, as it is a proof that every one of you may gain as much as the whole, if your own idleness or vice prevent it not;—mark by what means! Our community, like people of other professions, live upon the necessities, the passions, or the weaknesses of their fellow-creatures. The two great passions of the human breast are vanity and pity; both these have great power in men’s actions, but the first the greater far; and he who can attract these the most successfully, will gain the largest fortune.
“There was a time when rules for doing this were of more worth to me than gold; but now I am grown old, my strength and senses fail me, and I am past being an object of compassion. A real scene of affliction moves few hearts to pity: dissembled wretchedness is what most reaches the human mind, and I am past dissembling. Take therefore among you, the maxims I have laid down for my own guide, and use them with as much success as I have done.
“Be not less friends because you are brothers, or of the same profession: the lawyers herd together in their inns, the doctors in their college, the mercers on Ludgate-hill, and the old clothes-men in Monmouth-street: what one has not among these another has; and among you the heart of him who is not moved by one lamentable p. 48object, will probably be so by another; and that charity which was half awakened by the first, will relieve a second, or a third. Remember this, and always people a whole street with objects skilled in scenes of different distress, placed at proper distances: the tale that moves not one heart, may surprise the next,—the obdurate passer-by of the first must be made of no human matter if he feels no part of the distress that twenty different tales have heaped together; and be assured, that where it is touched with a kindred misfortune, it will bestow.
“Remember, that where one gives out of pity to you, fifty give out of kindness to themselves, to rid them of your troublesome application; and for one that gives out of real compassion, five hundred do it out of ostentation. On these principles, trouble people most who are most busy, and ask relief where many see it given, and you’ll succeed in your attempt. Remember that the streets were made for people to walk, and not to converse in: keep up their ancient use; and whenever you see two or three gathered together, be you amongst them, and let them not hear the sound of their own voices till they have bought off the noise of yours. When self-love is thus satisfied, remember social virtue is the next duty, and tell your next friend where he may go and obtain the same relief, by the same means.
“Trouble not yourselves about the nobility: prosperity has made them vain and insensible: they cannot pity what they cannot feel.
“The talkers in the street are to be tolerated on different conditions, and at different prices; if p. 49they are tradesmen, their conversation will soon end, and may be well paid for by a halfpenny: if an inferior clings to the skirt of a superior, he will give twopence rather than be pulled off; and when you are happy enough to meet a lover and his mistress, never part with them under sixpence, for you may be sure they will never part from one another.
“So much regards communities of men; but when you hunt single, the great game of all is to be played. However much you ramble in the day, be sure to have some street near your home, where your chief residence is, and all your idle time is spent, for the night. Here learn the history of every family, and whatever has been the latest calamity; of that provide a brother or a sister that may pretend the same. If the master of one house has lost a son, let your eldest brother attack his compassion on that tender side, and tell him he has lost the sweetest, hopefullest, and dutifullest child, that was his only comfort: what would the answer be, but, aye, poor fellow! I know how to pity thee in that; and a shilling be in as much haste to fly out of his pocket as the first tear from his eye.
“Is the master of a second house sick? waylay his wife from morning till night, and tell her you will pray, morning, noon, and night for his recovery. If he dies, grief is the reigning passion for the first fortnight, let him have been what he would: grief leads naturally to compassion, so let your sister thrust a pillow under her coats, tell her she is a poor disconsolate widow, left with p. 50seven small children, and that she lost the best husband in the world; and you may share considerable gains.
“Whatever people seem to want, give it them largely in your address to them: call the beau Sweet Gentleman, bless even his coat or perriwig, and tell him they are happy ladies where he is going. If you meet with a schoolboy-captain, such as our streets are full of, call him Noble General; and if the miser can be any way got to strip himself of a farthing, it will be by the name of Charitable Sir.
“Some people show you in their looks the whole thoughts of their heart, and give you a fine notice how to succeed with them: if you meet a sorrowful countenance with a red coat, be sure the wearer is a disbanded officer: let a female always attack him, and tell him she is the widow of a poor marine, who had served twelve years, and then broke his heart because he was turned out without a penny; if you see a plain man hang down his head as he comes out of some nobleman’s gate, say to him, Good worthy sir, I beg your pardon, but I am a poor ruined tradesman, that once was in a good business, but the great people would not pay me. And if you see a pretty woman with a dejected look, send your sister that is at hand, to complain to her of a bad husband, that gets drunk and beats her; that runs to whores, and has spent all her substance: there are but two things that can make a handsome woman melancholy: the having a bad husband, or the having no husband at all; if the first of these is the case, one of the former crimes will touch her to the p. 51quick, and loosen the strings of her purse; in the other, let a second distressed object tell her she was to have been married well, but that her lover died a week before; one way or other the tender heart of the female will be melted, and the reward will be handsome. If you meet a homely, but dressed-up lady, pray for her lovely face, and beg a penny; if you see a mark of delicacy by the drawing up of the nose, send somebody to show her a sore leg, a scalded head, or a rupture. If you are happy enough to fall in with a tender husband leading his big wife to church, send companions that have but one arm, or two thumbs, or tell her of some monstrous child you have brought forth, and the good man will pay you to be gone, if he gives slightly, it is but following, getting before the lady, and talking louder, and you may depend upon his searching his pocket to better purpose a second time. There are many more things of which I have to speak, but my feeble tongue will not hold out. Profit by these: they will be found sufficient, and if they prove to you, my children, what they have been to me these eighteen years, I shall not repine at my dissolution.”
Here he paused for some time, being almost spent: then, recovering his voice and spirits, he thus began again: “As I find the lamp of life is not quite extinguished, I shall employ the little that remains in saying a few words of my public conduct as your king. I call heaven to witness, that I have loved you all with a paternal love: these now feeble limbs and broken spirits have been worn out in providing for your welfare, and p. 52often have these dim eyes watched while you have slept, with a father’s care for your safety. I call you all to witness that I have kept an impartial register of your actions, and no merit has passed unnoticed. I have, with a most exact hand, divided to every man his due portion of our common stock, and have had no worthless favourite nor useless officer to eat the honey of your labour. And for all these I have had my reward, in seeing the happiness, and having the love of all my subjects. I depart, therefore, in peace, to rest from my labours; it remains only that I give you my last advice, which is, that in choosing my successor, you pay no partial regard to my family, but let him only that is most worthy rule over you.” He said no more, but, leaning back in his chair, died without a sigh.
Never was there a scene of more real distress, or more unfeigned grief, than now appeared among his children and subjects. Nothing was heard but sighs and exclamations for their loss. When the first transports of their grief were over, they sent the sorrowful news to all the houses that were frequented by their community in every part of the kingdom; at the same time summoning them to repair to the city of London on a certain day, in order to proceed to the election of a new king.
Before the day appointed for the election a vast concourse of mendicants flocked from all parts of the kingdom to the city of London; for every member of the community has a right to vote in the choice of their king, as they think it inconsistent with that of natural liberty, which every p. 53man is born heir to, to deny any one the privilege of making his own choice in a matter of so great importance.
Here, reader, as thou wilt be apt to judge from what thou hast seen, thou already expectest a scene of riot and debauchery; to see the candidates servilely cringing, meanly suing, and basely bribing the electors, depriving themselves of sense and reason, and selling more than Esau did for a mess of pottage; for, what is birthright, what is inheritance, when put in the scale against that choicest blessing, public liberty! O, Liberty! thou enlivener of life, thou solace of toils, thou patron of virtue, thou encourager of industry, thou spring of justice, thou something more than life, beyond the reach of fancy to describe, all hail! It is thou that beamest the sunshine in the patriot’s breast; it is thou that sweetenest the toil of the labouring mechanic! thou dost inspire the ploughman with his jocund mirth, and thou tunest the merry milk-maid’s song; thou canst make the desert smile, and the barren rock to sing for joy; by thy sacred protection the poorest peasant lies secure under the shadow of his defenceless cot, whilst oppression at a distance gnashes with her teeth, but dares not show her iron rod; and power, like the raging billows, dashes its bounds with indignation, but dares not overpass them. But where thou art not, how changed the scene! how tasteless, how irksome labour! how languid industry! Where are the beauteous rose, the gaudy tulip, the sweet-scented jessamine? where the purple grape, the luscious peach, the glowing nectarine? wherefore smile not the valleys with their beauteous verdure, p. 54nor sing for joy with their golden harvest? All are withered by the scorching sun of lawless power! Where thou art not, what place so sacred as to be secure? or who can say, this is my own! This is the language only of the place where thou delightest to dwell; but, as soon as thou spreadest thy wings to some more pleasing clime, power walks abroad with haughty strides, and tramples upon the weak, whilst oppression, with its heavy hand, bows down the unwilling neck to the yoke. O, my Country! alas, my Country! thou wast once the chosen seat of liberty; her footsteps appeared in thy streets, thy palaces, thy public assemblies: she exulted in thee: her voice, the voice of joy and gladness was heard throughout the land: with more than a mother’s love she held forth her seven-fold shield to protect thee, the meanest of her sons; whilst justice, supported by law, rode triumphant by her side with awful majesty, and looked into fear and trembling every disturber of the public quiet. O, thou whom my soul loveth, wherefore dost thou sit dejected, and hidest thy face all the day long? Canst thou ask the reason of my grief? See, see, my generous hardy sons are become foolish, indolent, effeminate, thoughtless; behold, how with their own hands they have loaded me with shackles: alas! hast thou not seen them take the rod from my beloved sister, Justice, and give it to the sons of blood and rapine? Yet a little while I mourn over lost and degenerate sons, and then with hasty flight fix my habitation in some more happy clime.
Though the community of the gipseys at other times give themselves up to mirth and jollity with p. 55perhaps too much licence, yet nothing is reckoned more infamous and shameful amongst them than to appear intoxicated during the time of an election, and it very rarely happens that any of them are so, for they reckon it a choice of so much importance, that they cannot exert in it too much judgment, prudence, and wisdom; they therefore endeavour to have their faculties strong, lively, penetrating, and clear at that time. Their method of election is different from that of most other people, though, perhaps, it is the best contrived of any, and attended with the fewest inconveniences. We have already observed, that none but those who have long been members of the community, are well acquainted with the institution of it, and have signalized themselves by some remarkable actions, are permitted to offer themselves as candidates. These are obliged, ten days before the election, to fix up in some place of their public resort an account of those actions, upon the merit of which they found their pretensions of becoming candidates; to which they must add their opinions on liberty, and the office and duties of a king. They must, during these ten days, appear every day at the place of election, that their electors may have an opportunity of forming some judgment from the lineaments and prognostics of their countenance. A few days before the election, a little white ball, and as many black ones as with the white one will equal the number of candidates, are given to each elector.
When the day of election is come, as many boxes are placed as there are candidates, with the name of the particular candidate written on the p. 56box which is appropriated to him; these boxes are quite closed, except a little opening at the top, which is every night, during the election, locked up under the keys and seals of each candidate, and of six of the most venerable old men in the community; it is in the little opening at the top of these boxes, that the elector puts in the little ball we have just now mentioned; at the same time he puts his white ball into the box of the candidate whom he chooses to be his king, he puts a black ball into the boxes of all the other candidates; and when they have all done so, the boxes are broken open, and the balls counted in presence of all the candidates, and of as many electors as choose it, by the old men above mentioned; and he who has the greatest number of white balls is always duly chosen. By this means no presiding officer has it in his power to make one more than two, which sometimes happens in the elections amongst other communities, who do not use this form. There are other innumerable advantages attending this manner of election, and it is likely to preserve public liberty the longest; for, first, as the candidates are obliged to fix up publicly an account of those actions upon the merit of which they become candidates, it deters any but those who are truly worthy from offering themselves; and, as the sentiments which each of them gives upon public liberty, and the duty and office of a king, is immediately entered in their public register, it stands as a public witness against, and a check upon that candidate who is chosen, to deter him from a change of sentiments and principles; for, though in some countries this is known to have little p. 57effect, and men have on a sudden, without any alteration in the nature of things, shamelessly espoused those principles and sentiments, which they had vehemently all their life before opposed, yet in this community, where there is so high a sense of honour and shame kept up, it must necessarily be none of the least binding obligations. Secondly, by this method of balloting, or giving their votes by balls, the elector’s choice is more free and unbiassed; for, as none but himself can know the candidate he gives his white ball to, there can be no influence of fear, interest, ties of blood, or any other cause, to oblige him to give his vote contrary to his judgment; even bribes, if they were known amongst these people, would lose their effect under this method of voting; because few candidates would choose to bribe, when they could have no security or knowledge whether the bribed elector might have put a black ball instead of a white one into his box.
Our hero was now one of the candidates, and exhibited to the electors so long a list of bold and ingenious stratagems which he had executed, and made so graceful and majestic an appearance in his person, that he had a considerable majority of white balls in his box, though there were ten candidates for the same honour; upon which he was declared duly elected, and hailed by the whole assembly, King of the Mendicants. The public register of their actions being immediately committed to his care, and homage done him by all the assembly, the whole concluded with great feasting and rejoicing, and the electors sang the following ode:
At the crowning of our king,
Thus we ever dance and sing;
Where’s the nation lives so free,
And so merrily as we!
We enjoy our ease and rest,
To the field we are not press’d;
And when taxes are increased,
We are not a penny sess’d.
Nor will any go to law
With a Maunder [58e] for a straw;
All which happiness, he brags,
Is only owing to his rags.
p. 59Though Mr. Carew was now privileged by the dignity of his office from going out on any cruise, and was provided with every thing necessary, by joint contributions of the community, yet he did not give himself up to the slow poison of the mind, indolence, which, though its operations are imperceptible, is more hurtful and fatal than any of the quicker passions; for we often see great virtues break through the cloud of other vices, but indolence is a standing corrupted pool, which always remains in the same state, unfit for every purpose. Our hero, therefore, notwithstanding the particular privilege of his office, was as active in his stratagems as ever, and ready to encounter any difficulties which seemed to promise success, of which the following is an instance.
Happening to be in the parish of Fleet, near Portland Race, in Dorsetshire, he happened to hear in the evening of a ship in imminent danger of being cast away, she having been driven on some shoals. Early in the morning, before it was well light, he pulled off his clothes, which he flung into a deep pit, and then unseen by any one swam to the vessel, which now parted asunder; he found only one of the crew alive, who was hanging by his hands on the side of the vessel, the rest being either washed overboard, or drowned in attempting to swim to the shore. Never was there a more piteous object than this poor wretch hanging between life and death; Mr. Carew immediately offered him his assistance to get him to shore, at the same time inquiring the name of the vessel, and her master, what cargo on board, whence she came, and whither bound.
p. 60The poor wretch replied, she belonged to Bristol, captain Griffin, master, came from Hamburg, was bound to Bristol with a cargo of Hamburg goods, and had seven men and a boy on board; at the same time our hero was pressing him to let go his hold, and commit himself to his care, and he would endeavour to swim with him to shore: but, when the danger is so imminent, and death stands before our eyes, it is no easy matter to be persuaded to quit the weakest stay; thus the poor wretch hesitated so long before he would quit his hold of the vessel, that a large sea broke upon the wreck, and overwhelmed him in the great deep. Mr. Carew was in no little danger, but, being an excellent swimmer, he with great difficulty got to shore, though not without hurt, the sea throwing him with great violence on the beach, whereby one of his arms was wounded. By this time a great number of spectators were gathered on the strand, who rejoiced to see Mr. Carew come ashore alive, supposing him to be one of the poor wretches belonging to the ship. Naked, spent with fatigue, and wounded, he raised a feeling of pity in all the spectators; for, so strongly is this tender passion connected with our frame by the beneficent Author of Nature, to promote the assistance of each other, that, no sooner does the eye see a deplorable object, than the heart feels it, and as quickly forces the hand to relieve it; so that those whom the love of money, for we think that the greatest opposite to pity, has rendered unfeeling of another’s woes, are said to have no hearts, or hearts of stone; as we naturally conclude no one can be void of that soft and Godlike passion—pity, but either one p. 61who by some cause or other happens to be made up without a heart, or one in whom continual droppings of self-love or avarice have quite changed the nature of it; which, by the most skilful anatomist, is allowed in its natural state to be fleshy, soft, and tender; but has been found, without exception, upon inspection into the bodies of several money lovers, to be nothing but a callous stony substance, from which the chemists, by most intense fires, have been able to extract nothing but a caput mortuum, or an earthy, dry, useless powder.
Amongst the spectators of Mr. Carew, was the housekeeper of Madam Mohun, in the parish of Fleet, who had a heart made of the softest substance; for she immediately, agreeable to the beneficent precepts of the gospel, pulled off her own cloak to give to him that had none: and, like the good Samaritan, giving him a handkerchief to bind up his wounds, bid him follow her, and led him to her mistress’s house, where, placing him before a good fire, she gave him two large glasses of brandy, with loaf sugar in it; then bringing him a shirt and other apparel, she went up stairs and acquainted Madam Mohun, her venerable mistress, in the most feeling manner, with the whole affair.
Here, could we hope our work would last to future ages, we might immortalize this generous woman.—Her mistress was so affected with her relation, that she immediately ordered a warm bed to be prepared for the poor wretch, and that he should be taken great care of, which was accordingly soon done, and Mr. Carew lay very quiet p. 62for three or four hours; then waking, he seemed to be very much disturbed in his mind; his talk was incoherent, his groans moving, and he tossed from one side of the bed to the other, but seemed to find ease in none: the good people seeing him so uneasy in bed, brought him a good suit of clothes, and he got up. Being told the bodies of some of his shipmates were flung up by the sea on the shore, he seemed greatly affected, and the tears dropped from his eyes. Having received from Justice Farwell, who happened to be there, ill of the gout, a guinea and a pass for Bristol, and considerable contributions from the great number of people who flocked to see him, to the amount of nine or ten pounds, he expressed an inclination of making the best of his way to Bristol: and the good Justice Farwell lent him his own horse to ride as far as the town of Dorchester, and the parson of the parish sent his man to show him the way.
Mr. Carew would have been gladly excused from going through Dorchester, as he had appeared there but four or five days before in the character of a broken miller, and had thereby raised a contribution of the mayor and corporation of that place; but as it lay in the direct road to Bristol, and he was attended by a guide, he could not possibly avoid it. As soon as they came there, his guide presented the pass in behalf of Mr. Carew to the mayor, who thereupon ordered the town-bell to be rung, and assembled the heads of the corporation. Though he had been so lately with them, yet, being now in a quite different dress, and a pass which they knew to be signed by Justice p. 63Farwell, and the guide testifying that he was an unfortunate shipwrecked seaman, escaped from the most imminent danger, they had no notion of his being the broken miller who had been with them a few days before; they therefore treated him with great humanity, and relieved him very generously. After this, the guide took his leave of him with a great many good wishes for his safe arrival at Bristol; but Mr. Carew, instead of pursuing his way thither, steered his course towards Devonshire, and raised contributions by the way, as a shipwrecked seaman, on Colonel Brown of Framton, Squire Trenchard, and Squire Falford of Tolla, Colonel Broadrip, Colonel Mitchell, and Squire Richards of Long Britty, and several other gentlemen.
It was not long after this, that, being in the city of Bristol, he put in execution a very bold and ingenious stratagem. Calling to mind one Aaron Cook, a trader of considerable worth and note, at St. John’s in Newfoundland, whom he resembled both in person and speech, he resolved to be the son of Aaron Cook for some time; he therefore went upon the Tolsey, and other places of public resort for the merchants of Bristol, and there modestly acquainted them with his name, as well as his misfortunes; that he was born and lived all his life at St. John’s in Newfoundland; that he was bound for England, in the Nicholas, Captain Newman; which vessel springing a leak, they were obliged to quit her, and were taken up by an Irishman, Patrick Pore, and by him carried into Waterford; whence he had got passage, and landed at King’s Road; that his business in England p. 64was to buy provisions and fishing craft, and to see his relations, who lived in the parish of Cockington, near Torbay, where, he said, his father was born.
Captains Elton, Galloway, Masters, Thomas, Turner, and several other Newfoundland traders, many of whom personally knew his pretended father and mother, asked him many questions about the family, their usual place of fishing, &c., particularly if he remembered how the quarrel happened at his father’s (when he was but a boy) which was of so unhappy a consequence to Governor Collins? Mr. Carew very readily replied, that though he was then very young, he remembered that the governor, the parson and his wife, Madam Short, Madam Bengy, Madam Brown, and several other women of St. John’s, having met together, and feasting at his father’s, a warm dispute happened among the men in the heat of liquor, concerning the virtue of women, the governor obstinately averring that there was not one honest woman in all Newfoundland. What think you then of my wife? said the parson. The same as I do of all other women, all whores alike, answered the governor roughly. Hereupon the women, not able to bear this gross aspersion on their honour, with one accord attacked the governor, who, being overpowered by their fury, could not defend his face from being disfigured by their nails, nor his clothes from being torn off his back; and what was much worse, the parson’s wife thinking herself most injured, cut the hamstring of his leg with a knife, which rendered him a cripple his whole life after.
p. 65This circumstantial account, which was in every point exactly as the affair happened, and many other questions concerning the family which the captains asked him, and he as readily answered, (having got every particular information concerning them when in Newfoundland,) fully convinced them that he must really be the son of their good old friend Mr. Aaron Cook; they therefore not only very generously relieved him, but offered to lend him any moderate sum, to be paid again in Newfoundland, the next fishing season; but Mr. Carew had too high a sense of honour to abuse their generosity so far; he therefore excused himself from accepting their offer, by saying he would be furnished with as much as he should have occasion for, by merchant Pemm of Exeter. They then took him with them to Guildhall, recommending him to the benevolence of the mayor and corporation, testifying he was a man of reputable family in Newfoundland. Here a very handsome collection was made for him; and the circumstances of his misfortunes becoming public, many other respectable ladies and gentlemen gave him that assistance according to their abilities, which is always due to unfortunate strangers. Three days did the captains detain him by their civilities in Bristol, showing him all the curiosities and pleasures of the place to divert his melancholy. He then set out for Cockington, where his relations lived, and Bridgewater being on his road, he had a letter, from one of the Bristol captains, to Captain Drake in that place.
As soon as he came to Bridgewater, he went p. 66directly to the mayor’s house, and knocking at the gate, it was opened to him by madam mayoress, to whom he related his misfortune; and the good lady, pitying him as an unfortunate stranger, so far distant from his home, gave him half-a-crown, and engaged her daughter, a child, to give him a shilling.
We cannot pass by this amiable lady, without paying her the due tribute of praise; for tenderness and compassion ought to be the peculiar ornament of every female breast; and it were to be wished that every parent would betimes, like this good lady, instil into their children a tender sense of humanity, and feeling for another’s woes, they would by this means teach them the enjoyment of the most godlike and pleasing of all other pleasures, that of relieving the distressed; and would extinguish that sordid selfish spirit, which is the blot of humanity. The good lady not content with what she had already done, ushered him into the room, where her husband, an aged gentleman, was writing; to whom she related Mr. Cook’s misfortunes in as moving a manner as she was able; the old gentleman laid aside his spectacles, and asked him several questions, then dispatched his servant into the town, who soon returned with two Newfoundland captains, one of whom happened to be Captain Drake, to whom our hero had a letter of recommendation given him by one of the Bristol captains; and the other Captain Morris, whose business having called him to Bristol, he had there been already informed by the captains of the circumstances of Mr. Cook’s misfortunes; and he repeating the same now to the p. 67mayor, Captain Morris confirmed this relation, told them how he had been treated at Bristol, and made him a present of a guinea and a greatcoat, it being then very rainy weather; Captain Drake likewise gave him a guinea, for both these gentlemen perfectly well knew Mr. Cook’s father and mother; the mayor likewise made him a present, and entertained him very hospitably in his house.
In the same character he visited Sir Haswell Tent, and several other gentlemen, raising considerable contributions.
This activity and ingenuity of their new king was highly agreeable to the community of the mendicants, and his applauses resounded at all their meetings; but, as fortune delights to change the scene, and of a sudden to depress those she had most favoured, we come now to relate the misfortunes of our hero, though we know not whether we should call them by that name or not, as they gave him a large field of action, and greater opportunities of exercising the more manly virtues—courage and intrepidity in dangers.
Going one day to pay a visit to Mr. Robert Incledon, at Barnstaple in Devon, (in an ill hour which his knowledge could not foresee,) knocking at the door softly, it was, opened to him by the clerk, with the common salutation of How do you do, Mr. Carew? where have you been? He readily replied, that he was making a visit to Squire Bassar, and in his return had called to pay his respects to Mr. Incledon.
The clerk very civilly asked him to walk in; but no sooner had he entered than the door was shut upon him by Justice Leithbridge, a very p. 68bitter enemy to the whole community of mendicants, who concealed himself behind it, and Mr. Carew was made a prisoner;—so sudden are the vicissitudes of life; and misfortunes spring as it were out of the earth.
Thus suddenly and unexpectedly fell the mighty Cæsar, the master of the world; and just so affrighted Priam looked when the shade of Hector drew his curtains, and told him that his Troy was taken.
The reader will, undoubtedly, be at a loss to comprehend why he was thus seized upon, contrary to the laws of hospitality; it is therefore our business to inform him, that he had, some time before this, in the shape of a poor lame cripple, frightened either the justice or his horse on Hilton bridge; but which of the two it was, cannot be affirmed with any certainty. However, the justice vowed a dire revenge, and now exulted greatly at having got him in his power; fame had no sooner sounded with her hundred prattling tongues that our hero was in captivity, but the justice’s house was crowded with intercessors for him:—however, Justice Leithbridge was deaf to all, and even to the entreaties of beauty,—several ladies being likewise advocates for him; whether it was that the justice was past that age when love shoots his darts with most success, or whether his heart was always made of that unmalleable stuff which is quite unassailable by love, or by his cousin-german, pity, we cannot well determine.
Amongst the rest who came to see him, were some captains of collier vessels, whom the justice espying, very probably taking some disgust at their p. 69countenances, demanded who they were, and immediately discharging the guard which had been before placed over Mr. Carew, charged the captains with the care of him, though they affirmed their vessels were to sail the next tide; however the justice paying as little regard to their allegations as he had done to their petitions for Mr. Carew, they found they had no other hope but from the good-natured dame—Patience; a good woman, who is always ready to render our misfortunes less, and was, in all his adventures, a great friend to our hero.
At length a warrant was made out for conveying him to Exeter, and lodging him in one of the securest places in that city; but, as it was now too late to set forward on their journey that night, they were ordered to a public house at Barnstaple; and the justice remembering the old proverb, “fast bind, fast find,” would fain have locked the door of the room where Mr. Carew was, and taken the key with him; but the honest landlord offering to become security for his appearance in the morning, the justice was at last persuaded to be content without a jailor.
Mr. Carew, notwithstanding his situation, was not cast down, but bravely opposed his ill fortune with his usual courage, and passed the night with great cheerfulness in the company of the collier captains, who were his guard.
The next day Mr. Carew was conducted to Exeter, without any thing remarkable happening on the road; here, to his great annoyance, he was securely lodged for upwards of two months, before he was brought to trial at the quarter sessions, p. 70held at the castle, when Justice Bevis was chairman; but that awful appearance,
The judges all met—a terrible show,
did not strike any terror into his breast; though loaded with chains, he preserved his usual firmness of mind, and saluted the court with a noble assurance. Being asked by the chairman what parts of the world he had been in? he answered Denmark, Sweden, Muscovy, France, Spain, Portugal, Newfoundland, Ireland, Wales, and some parts of Scotland. The chairman then told him he must proceed to a hotter country:—he inquired into what climate, and being told Merryland, he with great composure made a critical observation on the pronunciation of that word, implying, that he apprehended it ought to be pronounced Maryland, and added, it would save him five pounds for his passage, as he was very desirous of seeing that country: but, notwithstanding, he with great resolution desired to know by what law they acted, as he was not accused of any crime; however, sentence of banishment was passed upon him for seven years; but his fate was not singular, for he had the comfort of having fellow companions enough in his unmerited sufferings, as, out of thirty-five prisoners, thirty-two were ordered into the like banishment.
Whether at that period of time mankind were more profligate than usual, or whether there was a more than ordinary demand for men in his majesty’s colonies, cannot by us be determined. Mr. Carew was not, as is most commonly the p. 71case, deserted by his friends in adversity, for he was visited during the time of his imprisonment by many gentlemen, who were exceedingly liberal to him; and no sooner did the news of his captivity reach the ears of his subjects, than they flocked to him from all parts, administered to his necessities in prison, and daily visited him till his departure.
This, and the thoughts of the many new scenes and adventures which he was likely to encounter, whereby he might have an opportunity of making his name as famous in America as it was already in Europe, often filled his mind with too-pleasing reflections to regret his fate, though he could have liked to have performed the voyage under more agreeable circumstances; whenever the thought of being cruelly separated from his beloved wife and daughters glanced on his mind, the husband and father unmanned the hero, and melted him into tenderness and fear; the reflection too of the damage his subjects might sustain by his absence, and the disorder the whole community would be put in by it, filled him with many disquietudes.
Thus, between pleasing ideas and heartfelt pangs, did he pass his time till the day arrived that he was to be conducted on board the Julian, Captain Froade, commander. But how, gentle reader, shall I describe the ceremony of parting—the last farewell of that dreadful day!
Leaving the reader, therefore, to suppose all these fine things, behold the sails already spread, and the vessel cutting the waves; but, as if fate had opposed itself to the banishment of our hero, the winds soon proved contrary, and they were p. 72obliged to stay more than a fortnight in Falmouth harbour for a fair wind, and from thence, in eleven weeks, they arrived safely at Maryland, after a disagreeable voyage.
The first place they touched at was Hampton, between Cape Charles and Cape Henry, where the captain went on shore and got a pilot; and after about two days stay there, the pilot brought the vessel down Mile’s River, and cast anchor in Talbot county, when the captain ordered a gun to be fired as a signal for the planters to come down, and then went ashore. He soon after sent on board a hogshead of rum, and ordered all the men prisoners to be close shaved against the next morning, and the women to have their best head-dresses put on, which occasioned no little hurry on board; for, between the trimming of beards, and putting on of caps, all hands were fully employed.
Early in the morning the captain ordered public notice to be given of the day of sale; and the prisoners, who were pretty near a hundred, were all ordered upon deck, where a large bowl of punch was made, and the planters flocked on board; their first inquiry was for letters from old England, what passage he had, how their friends did, and the like.
The captain informed them of the war being declared against Spain, that it was expected it would soon be declared against France; and that he had been eleven weeks and four days in his passage.
Their next inquiry was, if the captain had brought them good store of joiners, carpenters, blacksmiths, weavers, and tailors; upon which p. 73the captain called out one Griffy, a tailor, who had lived at Chumleigh, in the county of Devon, and was obliged to take a voyage to Maryland, for making too free with his neighbour’s sheep. Two planters, who were parson Nicholas and Mr. Rolls, asked him if he was sound wind and limb? and told him it would be worse for him if he told them an untruth; and at last purchased him from the captain. The poor tailor cried and bellowed like a bell-wether, cursing his wife who had betrayed him. Mr. Carew, like a brave man, to whom every soil is his own country, ashamed of his cowardice, gave the tailor to the devil; and, as he knew he could not do without them, sent his shears, thimble, and needle, to bear him company. Wherefore all these wailings? said our hero: have we not a fine country before us? pointing to the shore. And indeed in this he was very right, for Maryland not only affords every thing which preserves and confirms health, but also all things that are charming. The beauty of the prospect, the fragrancy of the fields and gardens, the brightness of the sky, and the serenity of the air, affect the ravished senses; the country being a large plain, and hills in it so easy of ascent, and of such a moderate height, that they seem rather an artificial ornament to it, than one of the accidents of nature. The abundance of rivers and brooks is no little help to the almost incredible fertility of the soil.
But to return.—When all the best tradesmen were bought up, a planter came to Mr. Carew, and asked him what trade he was of. Mr. Carew, to satisfy him of his usefulness, told him he was a p. 74rat-catcher, a mendicant, and a dog merchant.—What the devil trades are these? inquired the planter in astonishment; for I have never before heard of them: upon which the captain thinking he should lose the sale of him, takes the planter aside, and tells him he did but jest, being a man of humour, for that he was a great scholar, and was only sent over on account of having disobliged some gentlemen; that he had no indenture with him, but he should have him for seven years, and that he would make an excellent school-master; however, he did not buy him.
The next day the captain asked him to go on shore with him to see the country, but with a view of getting a purchaser for him among the planters. As they were walking, several people came up to Mr. Carew, and asked him what countryman he was, &c. At length they went to a tavern, where one Mr. David Huxter, who was formerly of Lyme in Dorset, and Mr. Hambleton, a Scotchman, seemed to have an inclination to buy him between them; soon after came in one Mr. Ashcraft, who put in for him too, and the bowl of punch went merrily round. In the midst of their mirth, Mr. Carew, who had given no consent to the bargain they were making for him, thought it no breach of honour or good manners to seize an opportunity of slipping away without taking leave of them; and taking away with him about a pint of brandy and some biscuit cakes, which by good luck he chanced to put his hand on, he immediately betook himself to the woods as the only place of security for him.
Mr. Carew, having found he had eluded their p. 75search, congratulated himself on his happy escape and deliverance; for he now made no doubt of getting to old England again, notwithstanding the difficulties which lay in his way, as he knew his courage was equal to every danger; but we are too often apt, as the proverb says, “to reckon without our host,” and are sometimes near danger when we think ourselves most secure: and so it happened to our hero at this time; for, amidst his joyful reflections, he did not know that none were allowed to travel there, unless when known, without proper passes, of which he was not provided; and there is moreover a reward of five pounds for any one who apprehends a runaway.
It therefore happened, that one morning early, passing through a narrow path, he was met by four timbermen, going to work; he would fain have escaped their observation, but they soon hailed him, and demanded where he was going, and where his pass was? These were questions which he would willingly have been excused from answering; however, as his wit was always ready, he immediately told them he belonged to the Hector privateer, (which he knew then lay upon the coast,) and that he was going on some business for the captain to Charles’ county:—but, as he could produce no pass, this would not satisfy them, so they seized upon him, and conducted him to one Colonel Brown’s, a justice of the peace in Anne Arundel county.
But here, most gentle reader, that thou mayest not form a wrong idea of this justice, and, as is too often the case, judge of what thou hast not seen, from what thou hast seen, it will be necessary p. 76to inform thee, that he was not such a one as Hudibras describes:
An old dull sot, who told the clock,
For many years at Bridewell dock.
Neither was he such a one as that excellent artist, Mr. Hogarth, has depicted in his picture of a Modern Midnight Conversation;—nor such a one as the author of Joseph Andrews has, above all authors, so inimitably drawn to the life; nor yet was he such a one as thou hast often seen at a quarter sessions, with a large wig, a heavy unmeaning countenance, and a sour aspect, who gravely nods over a cause, and then passes a decision on what he does not understand; and no wonder, when he, perhaps, never saw, much less read the laws of his country; but of Justice Brown, I can assure the reader, he could not only read, but upon occasion write a mittimus, without the assistance of his clerk; he was thoroughly acquainted with the general duties of his office, and the particular laws of Maryland; his countenance was an awful majesty, tempered with a humane sweetness, ever unwilling to punish, yet always afraid of offending justice; and if at any time necessity obliged him to use the rod, he did it with so much humanity and compassion, as plainly indicated the duties of his office forced, rather than the cruelty or haughtiness of his temper prompted to it; and while the unhappy criminal suffered a corporeal punishment, he did all that lay in his power, to the end that it might have a due effect, by endeavouring to amend the mind p. 77with salutary advice; if the exigencies of the state required taxes to be levied upon the subjects, he never, by his authority or office, excused himself from bearing his full proportion; nor even would he meanly submit to see any of his fellow-justices do so.
It was before such a justice Mr. Carew had the good fortune to be carried: they found him in his court-yard, just mounting his horse to go out, and he very civilly inquired their business; the timbermen told him they had got a runaway: the justice then inquired of Mr. Carew who he was: he replied he was a sea-faring man, belonging to the Hector privateer of Boston, captain Anderson, and as they could not agree, he had left the ship. The justice told him he was very sorry it should happen so, but he was obliged by the laws of his country to stop all passengers who could not produce passes; and, therefore, though unwillingly, he should be obliged to commit him; he then entertained him very plentifully with victuals and drink, and in the mean time made his commitment for New Town gaol. Mr. Carew, finding his commitment made, told the timbermen, that, as they got their money easily, he would have a horse to ride upon, for it was too hot for him to walk in that country. The justice merrily cried, Well spoken, prisoner. There was then a great ado with the timbermen to get a horse for him; but at last one was procured, and our hero, mounted on a milk-white steed, was conveyed in a sort of triumph to New Town, the timbermen performing the cavalcade on foot.
The commitment was directed to the under-sheriff p. 78in New Town, a saddler by profession, who immediately waited on him to the prison; he found it well peopled, and his ears were confused with almost as many dialects as put a stop to the building of Babel. Mr. Carew saluted them, and courteously inquired what countrymen they were: some were from Kilkenny, some Limeric, some Dublin, others of Somerset, Dorset, Devon, and Cornwall; so that he found he had choice enough of companions, and, as he saw he had no remedy but patience, he endeavoured to amuse himself as well as he could.
Looking through the bars one day, he espied a whipping-post and gallows, at which he turned to his companions, and cried out, A fine sight truly this is, my friends! which was a jest many of them could not relish, as they had before tasted of the whipping; looking on the other side, he saw a fine house, and demanding whose it was, they told him it was the assembly-house. While he was thus amusing himself, reflecting on the variety of his fate, fortune was preparing a more agreeable scene for him. A person coming up to the window, asked where the runaway was, who had been brought in that day, Mr. Carew composedly told him he was the man; they then entered into discourse, inquiring of each other of what country they were, and soon found they were pretty near neighbours, the person who addressed him being one out of Dorsetshire. While they were talking, our hero seeing the tops of some vessels riding in the river, inquired what place they belonged to. The man replied, To the west of England, to one Mr. Buck of Biddeford, to whom most of the p. 79town belonged. Our hero’s heart leaped for joy at this good news, and he hastily asked if the captains Kenny, Hervey, Hopkins, and George Bird were there; the man replying in the affirmative, still heightened his satisfaction. Will you have the goodness to be an unfortunate prisoner’s friend, said he to the person he was talking with, and present my humble duty to any of them, but particularly to Captain Hervey, and inform them I am here. The man very civilly replied he would do it; and asked what he should tell them was his name? Carew, replied our hero. Away ran the messenger with great haste, but before he got half way, forgetting the name ran back again to ask it. Tell them my name is Carew, the rat-catcher; away went the man again, repeating all the way, Carew, the rat-catcher, lest he should forget it a second time; and he now executed his message so well, that very soon after came the captains to the gaol door.
Inquiring for Carew, the rat-catcher, as they wanted to speak with him; our hero, who heard them, answered with a tantivy, and a halloo to the dogs; upon which Captain Hervey swore it was Carew, and fell a laughing very heartily, then coming to the window, they very cordially shook hands with him, saying, they should as soon have expected to have seen Sir Robert Walpole there as him. They then inquired by what means he came there; and he informed them circumstantially of every thing as already mentioned. The captains asked him if he would drink a glass of rum, which he accepted of very gladly in his present condition; one of them quickly sent down to p. 80the storehouse for a bottle of rum and a bottle of October, and then they all went into the gaol, and sat down with him.
Thus did he see himself once more surrounded by his friends, so that he scarcely regretted his meeting with the timbermen, as they had brought him into such good company. He was so elevated with his good fortune, that he forgot all his misfortunes, and passed the evening as cheerfully as if he was neither a slave nor a prisoner. The captains inquired if he had been sold to a planter before he made his escape; he replied in the negative, when they informed him, that unless his captain came and demanded him, he would be publicly sold the next court-day. When they took their leaves, they told him they would see him the next morning.
Accordingly they returned very early, and having got admittance into the prison, hailed him with the pleasing sound of liberty, telling him, they had agreed among themselves to purchase him, then give him his release, and furnish him with proper passes; but instead of receiving this joyful news with the transports they expected, our hero stood for some time silent and lost in thought. During this while, he reflected within himself, whether his honour would permit him to purchase his liberty on these terms: and it was indeed no little struggle which passed in his breast on this occasion. On the one side, Liberty, with all her charms, presented herself, and wooed to be accepted, supported by Fear, who set before his eyes all the horrors and cruelties of a severe slavery; on the other side, dame Honour, with a majestic p. 81mein, forbade him, sounding loudly in his ears how it would read in future story, that the ingenious Mr. Carew had no contrivance left to regain his lost liberty, but meanly to purchase it at his friends’ expense. For some time did these passions remain in equipoise; as thou hast often seen the scales of some honest tradesman, before he weighs his commodity; but at length honour preponderated, and liberty and fear flew up and kicked the beam; he therefore told the captains he had the most grateful sense of this instance of their love, but that he could never consent to purchase his freedom at their expense: and therefore desired they would only do him the favour to acquaint Captain Froade of his being there. The captains were quite amazed at this resolution, and used great entreaties to persuade him to alter it, but all in vain; so that at last they were obliged to comply with his earnest request, in writing to Captain Froade.
Captain Froade received with great pleasure the news of his being in custody in New Town, and soon sent round his long-boat, paid all costs and charges, and brought him once more on board his ship. The captain received him with a great deal of malicious satisfaction in his countenance, telling him in a taunting manner, that, though he had promised Sir William Courtney to be at home before him, he should find himself damnably mistaken; and then with a tyrannic tone bade him strip, calling the boatswain to bring up a cat-o’-nine-tails, and tie him fast up to the main geers; accordingly our hero was obliged to undergo a p. 82cruel and shameful punishment. Here, gentle reader, if thou hast not a heart made of something harder than adamant, thou canst not choose but melt at the sufferings of our hero; he, who but just before, did what would have immortalised the name of Cæsar or Alexander, is now rewarded for it with cruel and ignominious stripes, far from his native country, wife, children, or any friends, and still doomed to undergo severe hardships. As soon as the captain had satisfied his revenge, he ordered Mr. Carew on shore, taking him to a blacksmith, whom he desired to make a heavy iron collar for him, which in Maryland they call a pot-hook, and is usually put about the necks of runaway slaves. When it was fastened on, the captain jeeringly cried, Now run away if you can; I will make you help to load this vessel, and then I’ll take care of you, and send you to the ironworks of Susky Hadlam.
Captain Froade soon after left the vessel, and went up to a storehouse at Tuckhoe, and the first mate to Kent island, whilst the second mate and boatswain kept the ship; in the mean time our hero was employed in loading the vessel, and doing all manner of drudgery. Galled with a heavy yoke and narrowly watched, he began to lose all hopes of escape; his spirits now began to fail him, and he almost gave himself up to despair, little thinking his deliverance so near at hand, as he found it soon to be.
One day, as he was employed in his usual drudgery, reflecting within himself upon his unhappy condition, he unexpectedly saw his good friends, Captains Hervey and Hopkins, two of the p. 83Biddeford captains, who, as has been before related, had offered to redeem him from the prison at New Town; he was overjoyed at the sight of them, not that he expected any deliverance from them, but only as they were friends he had been so much obliged to.
The captains came up and inquired very kindly how it fared with him, and how he bore the drudgery they saw him employed in; adding, that he had better have accepted the offer they made him at New Town. Our hero gallantly replied, that however severe the hardships he underwent, and were they still more so, he would rather choose to suffer them, than purchase liberty at their cost. The captains, charmed with his magnanimity, were resolved to make one attempt more to get him his liberty. They soon after sounded the boatswain and mate; and finding them not greatly averse to give him an opportunity to escape, they took him aside, and thus addressed him:—Friend Carew, the offer we made you at New Town may convince you of the regard we have for you; we therefore cannot think of leaving the country before we have, by some means or other, procured your liberty; we have already sounded the boatswain and mate, and find we can bring them to wink at your escape; but the greatest obstacle is, that there is forty pounds penalty and half a year’s imprisonment, for any one that takes off your iron collar, so that you must be obliged to travel with it, till you come among the friendly Indians, many miles distant from hence, who will assist you to take it off, for they are great friends with the English, and trade with us for lattens, kettles, p. 84frying-pans, gunpowder and shot; giving us in exchange buffalo and deer skins, with other sorts of furs. But there are other sorts of Indians, one of which are distinguished by a very flat forehead, who use cross-bows in fighting; the other of a very small stature, who are great enemies, and very cruel to the whites; these you must endeavour by all means to avoid, for if you fall into their hands, they will certainly murder you.
And here the reader will, we make no doubt, be pleased to see some account of the Indians, among whom our hero was treated with so much kindness and civility, as we shall relate in its proper place.
At the first settling of Maryland, there were several nations of them governed by petty kings. Mr. Calvert, Lord Baltimore’s brother having been sent by him to make the first settlement in Maryland, landed at Potowmac town; during the infancy of Werowance, Archibau, his uncle, who governed his territories in his minority, received the English in a friendly manner. From Potowmac the governor proceeded to Piscataqua, about 20 leagues higher, where he found many Indians assembled, and among them an Englishman, Captain Henry Fleet, who had lived there several years in great esteem with the natives. Captain Fleet brought the prince on board the governor’s pinnace to treat with him. Mr. Calvert asked him, whether he was agreeable that he and his people should settle in his country. The prince replied, I will not bid you go, neither will I bid you stay, but you may use your own discretion. The Indians, finding their prince stay longer on board than they expected, p. 85crowded down to the water-side to look after him, fearing the English had killed him, and they were not satisfied till he showed himself to them, to please them. The natives, who fled from St. Clement’s isle, when they saw the English come as friends, returned to their habitations; and the governor, not thinking it advisable to settle so high up the river in the infancy of the colony, sent his pinnaces down the river, and went with Captain Fleet to a river on the north side of the Potowmac, within four or five leagues, in his long-boat, and came to the town of Yoamaco, from which the Indians of that neighbourhood are called Yoamacoes. The governor landed, and treating with the prince there, acquainted him with the occasion of his coming, to whom the Indian said little, but invited him to his house, entertained him kindly, and gave him his own bed to lie on. The next day he showed him the country, and the governor determining to make the first settlement there, ordered all his ships and pinnaces to come thither to him.
To make his entry the more safe and peaceable, he presented the Werowance and Wilsos, and principal men of the place, with some English cloth, axes, hoes and knives, which they accepted very kindly, and freely consented that he and his company should dwell in one part of the town, and reserving the other for themselves. Those Indians who inhabited that part which was assigned to the English, readily abandoned their houses to them; and Mr. Calvert immediately set hands to work to plant corn. The natives agreed further to leave the whole town to the English as soon as their p. 86harvest was in; which they did accordingly, and both English and Indians promised to live friendly together. If any injury was done on either part, the nation offending was to make satisfaction. Thus, on the 27th March, 1634, the governor took possession of the town, and named it St. Mary’s.
There happened an event which much facilitated this with the Indians. The Susquehanocks, a warlike people, dwelling between Chesapeak Bay and Delaware Bay, were wont to make incursions on their neighbours, partly for dominion and partly for booty, of which the women were most desired by them. The Yoamacoes, fearing these Susquehanocks, had a year before the English arrived, resolved to desert their habitations, and remove higher into the country; many of them were actually gone, and the rest prepared to follow them. The ships and pinnaces arriving at the town, the Indians were amazed and terrified at the sight of them, especially at hearing their cannon thunder, when they came to anchor.
The first thing that Mr. Calvert did was to fix a court of guard, and erect a storehouse; and he had not been there many days before Sir John Harvey, governor of Virginia, came there to visit him, as did several of the Indian Werowances, and many other Indians, from several parts of the continent; among others, came the king of Patuxent, and, being carried aboard the ship, then at anchor in the river, was placed between the governor of Virginia and the governor of Maryland, at an entertainment made for him and others. A Patuxent Indian coming aboard, and seeing his king p. 87thus seated, started back; thinking he was surprised, he would have fain leaped overboard, and could not be persuaded to enter the cabin, till the Werowance came himself, and satisfied him he was in no danger. This king had formerly been taken prisoner by the English of Virginia. After the storehouse was finished and the ship unladen, Mr. Calvert ordered the colours to be brought ashore, which was done with great solemnity, the gentlemen and their servants attending in arms: several volleys were fired on board and on shore, as also the cannon, at which the natives were struck with admiration, such at least as had not heard the firing of pieces of ordnance before, to whom it could not be dreadful.
The kings of Patuxent and Yoamaco were present at this ceremony, with many other Indians of Yoamaco; and the Werowance of Patuxent took that occasion to advise the Indians of Yoamaco to be careful to keep the league that had been made with the English. He staid in town several days, and was full of his Indian compliments; when he went away he made this speech to the governor: “I love the English so well, that, should they go about to kill me, if I had so much breath as to speak, I would command my people not to revenge my death, for I know they would not do such a thing, except it were through my own fault.”
This infant colony supplied themselves with Indian corn at Barbadoes, which, at their first arrival, they began to use to save their French store of flour and oatmeal. The Indian women, perceiving that their servants did not know how to p. 88dress it, made their bread for them, and taught them to do it themselves. There was Indian corn enough in the country, and these new adventurers soon after shipped off 10,000 bushels for New England, to purchase salt fish and other provisions. While the English and Indians lived at St. Mary’s together, the natives went every day to hunt with the new comers for deer and turkeys, which, when they had caught, they gave to the English, or sold for knives, beads, and such like trifles. They also brought them good store of fish, and behaved themselves very kindly, suffering their women and children to come among them, which was a certain sign of their confidence in them.
Most of the Indians still follow the religion and customs of their ancestors; and are not become either more pious or more polite by the company of the English.
As to their religion, they have all of them some dark notions about God; but some of them have brighter ones, if a person may be believed who had this confession from the mouth of an Indian: “That they believed God was universally beneficent; that his dwelling was in heaven above, and the influence of his goodness reached to the earth beneath; that he was incomprehensible in his excellence, and enjoyed all possible felicity; that his duration was eternal, his perfection boundless, and that he possessed everlasting happiness.” So far the savage talked as rationally of the existence of a God as a Christian divine or philosopher could have done; but when he came to justify their worshipping of the Devil, whom they call Okee, his notions were very heterodox. He said, “It is true p. 89God is the giver of all good things, but they flow naturally and promiscuously from him; that they are showered down upon all men without distinction; that God does not trouble himself with the impertinent affairs of men, nor is concerned at what they do, but leaves them to make the most of their free will, and to secure as many as they can of the good things that flow from him; that therefore it was to no purpose either to fear or worship him; but, on the contrary, if they did not pacify the evil spirit, he would ruin their health, peace, and plenty, he being always visiting them in the air, thunders, storms, &c.”
As to the idol which they all worship, and is kept in a temple called Quiocasan, he seemed to have a very different opinion of its divinity, and cried out against the juggling of the priests.—This man did not talk like a common savage, and therefore we may suppose he had studied the matter more than his countrymen, who, for the generality, paid a great deal of devotion to the idol, and worshipped him as their chief deity.
Their priests and conjurors are highly reverenced by them. They are given extremely to pawning or conjuring; and one of them very lately conjured a shower of rain for a gentleman’s plantation, in a time of drought, for two bottles of rum. We are not apt to give credit to such supernatural events; and, had we not found this in an author who was on the spot, we should have rejected it as a fable.
Their priests promise fine women, eternal spring, and every pleasure in perfection in the p. 90other world, which charmed them in this; and threaten them with lakes of fire, and torments by a fairy in the shape of an old woman. They are often bloody in their sacrifices, and offer up young children to the devil. They have a superstitious ceremony among them, which they call Huskanawing, and is performed thus: they shut up ten or twelve young men, the most deserving among them, about twenty years of age, in a strong inclosure, made on purpose, like a sugar loaf, and every way open like a lattice, for the air to pass through; they are kept for several months, and are allowed to have no sustenance but the infusion or decoction of poisonous intoxicating roots, which turn their brains, and they run stark mad.
By this it is pretended they lose the remembrance of all former things, even of their parents, treasure, and language, as if they had drunk of the water of oblivion, drawn out of the lake of Lethe. When they have been in this condition as long as their custom directs, they lessen this intoxicating potion; and, by degrees, the young men recover the use of their senses; but before they are quite well, they are shown in their towns; and the youths who have been huskanawed are afraid to discover the least sign of their remembering any thing of their past lives; for, in such a case, they must be huskanawed again, and they are disciplined so severely the second time, that it generally kills them.
After the young men have passed this trial, they are Coucarouses, or men of quality in their nations; and the Indians say they do it to take away p. 91from youth all childish impressions, and that strong partiality to persons and things which is contracted before reason takes place.
The Indian priests, to command the respect of the people, make themselves look as ugly and as terrible as they can; the conjurors always share with them in their deceit, and they gain by it; the Indians consult both of them before they go on any enterprise. There are no priestesses or witches among them. They erect altars on every remarkable occasion, and have temples built like their common cabins, in which their idol stands, and the corpses of their kings and rulers are preserved.
They have no sort of literature among them; and their way of communicating things from one to another is by hieroglyphics. They make their accounts by units, tens, hundreds, &c., as the English do; but they reckon their years by cohonks, or winters, and divide every year into five seasons; the budding time, the earing of the corn, the summer, the harvest, and the winter.
Their months they count by moons. They divide the day into three parts, the rise, power, and lowering, of the sun; and keep their accounts by knots on a string, or notches on a stick, of which Captain Smith relates a very pleasant story; that, when the princess Pocahonta went for England, a Coucarouse, or lord of her own nation, attended her; his name was Uttamaccomack: and king Powhatan, Pocahonta’s father, commanded him, when he arrived in England, to count the people, and give him an account of their number. Uttamaccomock, when he came ashore, got a stick, intending to count them by notches; but he p. 92soon found that his arithmetic would be to no purpose, and threw away his stick. At his return, the king asked him how many people there were? and he replied, count the stars of the sky, the leaves upon the trees, and the sand upon the seashore, and you will know how many are the people in England.
They esteem the marriage-vow as the most sacred of all engagements, and abhor divorces; adultery is the most unpardonable of all crimes amongst them, and seldom occurs without exemplary punishment.
Their maidens are very chaste; and if any one of them happen to have a child before marriage, her fortune is spoiled. They are very sprightly and good humoured, and the women generally handsome. Their manner of handling infants is very rough: as soon as the child is born, they plunge it over head and ears in cold water, and they bind it naked to a board, making a hole in the proper place for evacuation. Between the child and the board they put some cotton, wool, or fur, and let it lie in this posture till the bones begin to harden, the joints to knit, and the limbs to grow strong; they then loosen it from the board, and let it crawl about where it pleases. From this custom, it is said, the Indians derive the neatness and exactness of their limbs, which are the most perfect in the world. Some of them are of a gigantic stature, live to a great age, and are stronger than others; but there is not a crooked, bandy-legged, or ill-shaped, Indian to be seen. Some nations of them are very tall and large limbed, but others are short and small; their complexion p. 93is a dark brown and tawny. They paint themselves with a pecone root, which stains them a reddish colour. They are clear when they are young, but greasing and sunning make their skin turn hard and black. Their hair, for the most part, is coal black; so are their eyes; they wear their hair cut after several whimsical modes, the persons of note always keep a long lock behind; the women wearing it very long, hanging at their backs, or twisted up with beads; and all the better sort adorn their heads with a kind of coronet. The men have no beards, and, to prevent their having any, use certain devices, which they will not communicate to the English.
Their clothes are a mantle girt close in the middle, and underneath a piece of cloth tied round their waist, and reaching down to the middle of the thigh. The common sort only tie a piece of cloth or skin round the middle. As for their food they boil, broil, or roast, all the meat they eat; honomy is the standing dish, and consists of Indian corn soaked, broken in a mortar, and then boiled in water over a gentle fire ten or twelve hours together. They draw and pluck their fowls, skin and paunch their quadrupeds, but dress their fish with the scales on, and without gutting; they leave the scales, entrails, and bones, till they eat the fish, when they throw the offal away. Their food is chiefly beeves, turtle, several species of snakes, broth made of deer’s humbles, peas, beans, &c. They have no set meals: they eat when they are hungry, and drink nothing but water. Their bread is made of Indian corn, wild oats, or p. 94the seed of the sun-flower; they eat it alone, and not with meat.
They travel always on foot with a gun or bow. They live upon the game they kill, and lie under a tree upon a little high grass. The English prohibit them to keep corn, sheep, or hogs, lest they should steal their neighbour’s.
When they come to rivers, they presently patch up a canoe of birch bark, cross over in it, and leave it on the river’s bank, if they think they shall not want it; otherwise they carry it along with them.
Their way of receiving strangers is by the pipe, or calumet of peace. Of this Pere Henepin has given a long account in his voyage, and the pipe is as follows: they fill a pipe of tobacco, larger and bigger than any common pipe, light it, and then the chief of them takes a whiff, gives it to the stranger, and if he smoke of it, it is peace; if not, war; if peace, the pipe is handed all round the company.
The diseases of the Indians are very few, and easy to be cured: they for the most part arise from excessive heats and colds, which they get rid of by sweating. As for aches, and settled pains in the joints or limbs, they use caustics and scarifying. The priests are their physicians, and from their childhood are taught the nature and use of simples, in which their knowledge is excellent; but they will not communicate it, pretending it is a gift of God; and by this mystery they make it the more valuable.
Their riches consist of furs, peak, roenocke, and pearl. Their peak and roenocke are made of p. 95shells; the peak is an English bugle, but the roenocke is a piece of cockle, drilled through like a bead. Before the English came among them, the peak and the roenocke were all their treasure; but now they set a value on their fur and pearl, and are greedy of keeping quantities of them together. The pearl is good, and formerly was not so rare as it is at this time.
They had no iron tools till the English brought them over: their knives were sharpened reeds or shells, their axes sharp stones. They rubbed fire, by turning the end of a hard piece of wood upon the side of one that is soft and dry, which at last would burn. They felled great trees by burning them down at the root, having ways of keeping the fire from ascending. They hollowed them with a gentle fire, and scraped the trunk clean, and this made their canoes, of which some were thirty feet long. They are very good handicraft men, and what they do is generally neat and convenient.
Their kingdoms descended to the next heir, male or female, and they were exact in preserving the succession in the right line. If, as it often happened, one great prince subjected the other, those conquests commonly were lost at his death, and the nation returned again to the obedience of their natural princes. They have no written laws, neither can they have any, having no letters.
Their lands are in common, and their Werowances, or judges, are all lord-chancellors, deciding causes and inflicting punishments according as they think fit. These Werowances and the Coucarouses are their terms to distinguish the men of p. 96quality; the former are their war-captains, and the latter such as have passed the trial of huskanawing. Their priests and conjurors have great authority among them. They have servants whom they call black boys, and are very exact in requiring the respect that is due to their several qualities.
Most of the Indians live on the eastern shore, where they have two or three little towns; some of them go over to the other side, in winter time, to hunt for deer, being generally employed by the English. They take delight in nothing else, and it is very rare that any of them will embrace the Christian way of living and worship. There are about 500 fighting Indians in all the province; the cause of their diminution proceeded not from wars with the English, for they have none with them worth speaking of, but from the perpetual discords and wars among themselves. The female sex have always swept away a great many.
One thing is observed in them, though they are a people very timorous and cowardly in fight, yet when taken prisoners and condemned, they will die like heroes, braving the most exquisite tortures that can be invented, and singing all the time they are upon the rack.
We find several of the Indians doing actions which would do honour to the greatest heroes of antiquity: thus captain Smith, who was one of the first adventurers in planting the colony of Virginia, being taken prisoner, while he was making discoveries, by king Oppecamcanough, he not only spared Mr. Smith’s life, but carried him to his town and feasted him; and afterwards presented him p. 97to Powhaton, the chief king of the savages, who would have beheaded him, had he not been saved by the intercession and generosity of his daughter, Pocahonto, who, when Mr. Smith’s head was on the block, and she could not prevail with her father to give him his life, put her own head upon his, and ventured receiving the blow to save him, though she was scarce then sixteen years of age.
Some time after, Sir Thomas Dale sent captain Argall to Patowmac to buy corn, where he met with Pocahonta. He invited her to come aboard his ship, which with some difficulty she consented to, being betrayed by the king of Postcany, brother to the king of Patowmac, with whom she then resided.
Argall, having got her into his custody, detained her, and carried her to James’s Town, intending to oblige her father, king Powhaton, to come to what terms he pleased for the deliverance of his daughter. Though the king loved her tenderly, yet he would not do any thing for her sake which he thought was not for his own and the nation’s interest; nor would he be prevailed upon to conclude a firm treaty of peace till he heard his daughter, who had turned a Christian, was christened Rebecca, and married to Mr. John Rolfe, an English gentleman, her uncle giving her away in the church.
Powhaton approved of the marriage, took it for a sincere token of friendship, and was so pleased with it, that he concluded a league with the English in the year 1613.
Captain Smith, hearing the lady who had been so kind to him was arrived in England, and being engaged at that time in a voyage to New England, which hindered his waiting on her himself, petitioned queen Anne, consort to king James, on her behalf, setting forth the civilities he had received from her, and obligations she had laid upon the English, by the service she had done them with her father.
The queen received this petition very graciously; and before Captain Smith embarked for New England, Mr. Rolfe came with his wife from Plymouth to London. The smoke of the city offending her, he took lodgings for her at Brentford, and thither Captain Smith went with several friends to wait on her.
Pocahonta was told all along that Captain Smith was dead, to excuse his not coming to Virginia again; from which he had been diverted by settling a colony in New England. Wherefore, when this lady saw him, thinking the English had injured her in telling her a falsity, which she had ill deserved from them, she was so angry that she would not deign to speak to him: but at last, with much persuasion and attendance, was reconciled, and talked freely to him: she then put him in mind of the obligations she had laid upon him, and reproached him for forgetting her, with an air so lively, and words so sensible, that one might have seen nature abhors nothing more than ingratitude—a vice that even the very savages detest.
p. 99She was carried to court by the Lady Delaware, and entertained by ladies of the first quality, towards whom she behaved herself with so much grace and majesty, that she confirmed the bright character Captain Smith had given of her. The whole court was charmed with the decency and grandeur of her deportment so much, that the poor gentleman, her husband, was threatened to be called to an account for marrying a princess royal without the king’s consent; though in that king James showed a very notable piece of kingcraft, for there was no likelihood that Mr. Rolfe, by marrying Pocahonta, could any way endanger the peace of his dominions; or that his alliance with the king of Wicomaco could concern the king of Great-Britain; indeed, we are told, that upon a fair and full representation of the matter, the king was pleased to be satisfied.
The lady Pocahonta, having been entertained with all manner of respect in England, was taken ill at Gravesend, where she lay in order to embark for Virginia; she died there with all the signs of a sincere Christian and true penitent.
She had one son by Mr. Rolfe, whose posterity are at this day in good repute in Virginia, and inherit lands by descent from her.
The language of the Indians is lofty, but narrow; the accent and emphasis of some of their words are great and sweet, as Okorocston, Rancoce, Oriston, Shakameton, Poquiffin, all names of places, and as sonorous as any in Attica; then for sweetness they have their anna, mother, issimus, brother, nelapsin and usque oret, very good, pone, p. 100bread, morridge walk, a burying-place, scaw, a woman, salop, a man, pappoes, a child.
The captains acquainted Mr. Carew, that the unfriendly Indians were not the only enemies he had to fear, for he must expect to encounter with great dangers and difficulties, as rattle-snakes, horn-snakes, black-snakes, lions, leopards, bears, wolves, and wild cats. However this did not dishearten our hero, for he was resolved to attempt regaining his liberty, let the consequence be what it would. The captains then gave him a pocket-compass to steer by, a steel and tinder-box, a bag of cakes, a cheese, and some rum, telling him, he must leave the three-notched road a little way off, and steer to his left hand; (in Maryland they distinguish the roads by letters or notches cut on the trees;) that he must travel by night, and lie concealed in the day, for forty miles, and then he would come to a part of the country quite uninhabited; from thence he would enter the Indian country. They likewise told him, that all the wild beasts were afraid of fire, so that his best defence would be to strike a light and kindle some sticks whenever he was apprehensive of being attacked by any of them.
Our hero having received these and some other necessary instructions, and having returned his generous benefactors many thanks for their kindness, bidding them farewell with tears, set out on his dangerous journey about three o’clock in the afternoon. He had not travelled far, before he began to reflect on his melancholy condition, alone, unarmed, unacquainted with the way, galled with p. 101the heavy yoke, exposed every moment to the most imminent dangers, and dark tempestuous night approaching with all its horrors, increased its terrors; his ears were now assailed with the dismal yells and crying of wild beasts of different sorts, but, remembering the instructions he had received from the captains, he soon struck fire, and kindled some sticks, and was obliged the whole night to swing a fireband round his head; the sight of which kept the wild beasts from coming near, for, though they often came and looked at him, yet they soon turned tail again, seeing the fire.
However it was with great joy he saw day-light appear, at first dawn of which he was quite freed from those troublesome guests; he had nothing to do but to seek the thickest tree he could find, and, climbing up into it, he took some refreshment of sleep, which he had great need of, having travelled hard all night. He afterwards eat sparingly of his cheese and biscuit, fearing they might not last till he could get a fresh supply, and then took a very large dram of rum, with which, finding his spirits much refreshed, and night coming on, he began his journey again, travelling in the same manner as the preceding night, with a firebrand whirling round his head. In this manner travelling by night, and concealing himself by day, he went on four days, when he reached the Blue Mountains, where he thought himself out of all danger of pursuit, or being stopped for want of a pass. He now travelled by day, meeting with great multitudes of buffaloes, black bears, deer, wolves, and wild turkeys, the latter being so p. 102large as to weigh thirty or forty pounds; none of these creatures offered to attack him; but walking one day on the side of a small rivulet, almost lost in thought, he was suddenly alarmed by something he heard plunging into the water, and turning his head to the side from whence the noise came, he was struck with the sight of a great white bear, which, being likewise disturbed, raised itself immediately and made towards him. Our hero now thought there was no way to escape; however, with great presence of mind, he stepped aside to a furze bush, and, striking a light with all the haste he could, set it on fire; at the sight of which the bear, who was now within a very small distance of him, turned about, and went away roaring hideously.
Some time after this he was comically alarmed by an inoffensive animal; as he was walking along a deer-track, he chanced to spy a very fine tortoise-shell box, as he imagined, though he could not conceive how it could be dropped there; and, thinking he might make good advantage of it among the Indians, claps it into his pocket; he had not gone far before he heard a hissing noise, which seemed to be very near; he immediately thought it to be some venomous snake, and endeavoured to avoid it by going out of the path he was in; but still the noise seemed to pursue him; at last looking down, he sees a little ugly black head peeping out of his pocket, which he found came out of what he had picked up for a box: he with much ado slips his fingers into his pocket, takes out his supposed box, and flings it to the ground, when the creature, opening the upper p. 103from the under shell, marched away; this was, as he afterwards found, no other than a land-tortoise.
He found his journey very often obstructed by rivers and rivulets, which he was obliged either to wade through or swim over. At length, after many days’ tiresome travel, being grievously galled by his yoke, or collar, he discovered several tracks of the Indians. Never did more different passions agitate the breast of any man than did the breast of our hero at this time; on the one side he was overjoyed at the sight of the track of any human creature, thinking he should now get rid of his heavy collar, as well as get some refreshment of provisions, his own having been exhausted for almost two days past; but he had not pleased himself long with this reflection before the idea of the barbarous and unfriendly Indians struck into his mind, for he was quite uncertain whether the footsteps he discovered might lead him to the good and friendly Indians, or to those barbarous and inhuman wretches; he now represented himself as set upon by these, against whom he had no arms to defend himself, cruelly tormented, and at last slain as a victim in some of their bloody sacrifices.
It was about the evening when he discovered these footsteps, and he passed the whole night in this tormenting suspense. Very early in the morning he discovered five Indians at a distance; his fears represented them in the most frightful colours; they seemed of a gigantic stature, that he thought he could perceive their faces to be very flat and broad, which was the characteristic or mark of the unfriendly Indians. This struck him with unusual dread, and he now gave himself over for lost, when p. 104he saw they had espied him, and were making towards him: they coming nearer, he perceived them to be clothed in deer skins, their hair to be exceeding long, hanging down a great way over their shoulders; and, to his inexpressible joy, he distinguished they had guns in their hands, which was a sure sign they were the friendly Indians. This raised his spirits, and he approached them in a suppliant manner, making signs that he craved their assistance. The Indians accosted him with clapping their hands on their heads, and crying hush me a top, which in their language signifies good-morrow; then taking hold of his collar, they repeated one to another, in broken English, a runaway! a runaway! Presently after came up two more Indians, one of whom was a person of fine majestic appearance, whose dress was by far more magnificent than any of the others. His habit being a most beautiful panther’s skin faced with fur: his hair was adorned with a great variety of fine feathers, and his face painted with a great many colours. By these marks of distinction, Mr. Carew supposed him to be their king or prince, and indeed such he was; he spoke very good English, and accosted him as the others had done before. He then brought him to the wigwam, which is a name they give their houses, which are no more than stakes driven into the ground, covered over with deer or other skins. Here, observing that our hero was grievously hurt by his collar, this good king immediately set himself about freeing him from it; but, as he had no proper tool for that purpose, he was at a great loss how to execute it; but at last, taking the steel of p. 105Mr. Carew’s tinder-box, he jagged it into a kind of saw, with which he cut off his collar, but not without much labour, his majesty sweating heartily at the work. He then carried him into his own wigwam, which appeared very handsomely furnished. Here he ordered some Indian bread, and other refreshments, to be set before Mr. Carew, who ate very heartily. During this the prince acquainted him his name was George Lillycraft; that his father was one of those kings who were in England in the reign of Queen Anne; and then showed him some fine laced clothes, which were made a present of to him by the late king George of England (meaning his late majesty king George the First); he expressed a great affection for his brother kings of England, as he called them, and for the English nation in general. Soon after came in the queen, dressed in a short jacket, leading in her hand a young prince, who both repeated the word runaway twice.
Next day the king presented him to the wisos, or chief men of the town, who received him with a great deal of civility, and tokens of high esteem. He ate every day at the king’s table, and had a lodging assigned to him in his wigwam, and grew every day more and more in esteem among them, being consulted in all matters of difficulty. Thus sudden are the scenes of life shifted and changed; for a brave man will never despair under whatsoever misfortunes; for our hero, who but a few weeks before was treated like a beast of burden, heavily loaded, cruelly whipped, coarsely fed, and all by the insolence and inhumanity of his own countrymen, is now seated, in a strange country, p. 106with kings and princes, and consulted by a whole nation.
King Lillycraft, who was a man of very good natural sense, used to discourse with, and ask Mr. Carew many questions of the customs and manners of his brother kings in England. Being told one day that the king of England never stirred abroad without being surrounded with a great number of armed men, whom he paid for defending him, and fighting for him, he very simply asked whom he was afraid of? or whether he was constantly at war with any neighbouring king, who might fall upon him unawares? Being told to the contrary, he expressed very great surprise, and could not conceive of what use these armed men were, when the king had no enemy, adding, when I am at war, my people are my guard, and fight for me without being paid for it, and would each of them lay down his life to defend mine; and when I am at peace, I can fear no evil from my own people, therefore I have no need of armed men about me. Being told another time that the king of England kept himself generally in his wigwam, or palace, surrounded by certain officers, who permitted no one to come near him but by their permission, which was the greatest difficulty in the world to obtain, and that not a thousandth part of the people, who lived in the town where the palace was, had ever seen him in their lives, he turned away from Mr. Carew in a passion, telling him, He was certain he deceived him, and belied his good brother of England: for how, added he, can he be the king of a people whom he hath no knowledge of? or how can he be beloved by p. 107his subjects who have never seen him? how can he redress their grievances, or provide for their wants? how can he lead his people against their enemies? or how know what his subjects stand in need of, in the distant parts of the kingdom, if he so seldom stirs out of his wigwam? Being told that the king of England was informed of, and transacted all this by means of the officers that were about him, he replied, It might be so; but if he should ever chance to go to England, he should talk with his good friend the king upon these matters, as he could not clearly apprehend how they could be. For my part, added he, I know and am known by all my subjects. I appear daily among them, hear their complaints, redress their grievances, and am acquainted with every place in my kingdom. Being told the people of England paid their king, yearly, vasts sums out of the profits of their labour, he laughed, and cried, O poor king! adding, I have often given to my subjects, but never received any thing from them.
Hunting being the principal employment and diversion of the Indians, at which they are very expert, Mr. Carew had an opportunity of gratifying, to the utmost, his taste for this diversion, there scarcely passing a day but he was a party amongst them at some hunting match or other, and most generally with the king himself. He was now grown into such great respect among them, that they offered him a wife out of the principal families of the place, nearly related to the king; but our hero, notwithstanding these honours, could not forget his native country, the love of which glowed within his breast; he had therefore, p. 108for some time, formed the design of leaving them, and, very soon after, found an opportunity of doing so.
One day, being out a hunting, they chanced to fall in company with some other Indians, near the river Delaware. When the chase was over, they sat down to be merry together, and having got some rum amongst them, they drank pretty freely, and fell to singing and dancing after their country fashion.
Mr. Carew took this opportunity of slipping away, and, going down to the river side, seized one of the canoes. Though he was entirely unacquainted with the method of managing them, he boldly pushed from shore, landing near Newcastle in Pennsylvania; the place he crossed over being called Duck’s Creek, which communicates with the great Delaware. Mr. Carew being now got, as it were, among his countrymen again, soon transformed himself into a quaker: pulling off the button from his hat, and flapping it on every side, he put on as demure and precise a look, as if his whole family had been quakers, and he had never seen any other sort of people. Here, reader, it will be necessary to remark, that, as our hero is no longer amongst simple honest Indians, neither polite, lettered, nor deceitful, but among polished people, whose knowledge has taught them to forget the ways of nature, and to act every thing in disguise; whose hearts and tongues are as far distant asunder, as the North from the South pole, and who daily over-reach one another in the most common occurrences of life; we hope it will be no disgrace to our hero if among such he appears p. 109polished as the best, and puts on a fresh disguise as often as it suits his convenience.
The first house he went to was a barber’s, of whose assistance he had indeed need enough, not having shaved his beard since he left the ship: here he told a moving story, saying his name was John Elworth, of Bristol; that he had been artfully kidnapped by one Samuel Ball, of the same place, and gone through great hardships in making his escape. The good barber moved by his tale, willingly lent his assistance to take off his beard; during the operation, he entered into a good deal of chat, telling him his father was of Exeter; and, when he went away, gave him a half-crown bill, and he recommended him to Mr. Wiggil, a quaker of the same place. Here he told his moving story again, and got a ten-shilling bill from Mr. Wiggil, with recommendations to the rest of the quakers of the place, among whom he got a great deal of money. When he took his leave, he was recommended by them to the quakers of a town called Castile. Here he found a great deal of favour, and made the best of his way to Brandywine-Ferry, in which is room enough to lay up the whole royal navy of England; and from thence to Chester, so called, because the people who first settled there came for the most part from Cheshire. It contains above a hundred houses, and a very good road for shipping, the Delaware, on which it stands, being about three miles over. Here are a court-house and a prison. This place is also called Upland, and has a church dedicated to St. Paul, with a numerous congregation of those whom, exclusive of all other Christians, we call p. 110orthodox. Mr. Carew came here on Sunday, staid all the night, and the next morning he enquired out one Mrs. Turner, a quaker, who formerly lived at Embercomb, by Minehead, in Somersetshire; from her he got a bill, and a recommendation to some quakers at Derby, about five miles further, where she told him he would find Mr. Whitfield. On hearing this, he set out for Derby; but, before he reached there, was overtaken by hundreds of people going to hear Mr. Whitfield preach. Friend, says he to one of them, where are you going so fast? Hast thou not heard, friend, says the other, the second Christ is come? He then joined them, and they all proceeded to Derby, where he found Mr. Whitfield preaching in an orchard, but could not get near enough to hear his discourse, by reason of the great concourse of people; however, he seemed to be affected with it, and strictly imitated the quakers in all their sighs, groans, lifting up of the eyes, &c. Leaving them, he went to the sign of the ship, and enquiring where Mr. Whitfield lodged that night, was told at the justice’s, who was a miller; he then asked if he could have a bed there that night, and being told that he might, he passed the evening very cheerfully.
In the morning he asked for pen, ink, and paper, soon drew up a moving petition in the name of John Moore, the son of a clergyman, who had been taken on board the Tiger, Captain Matthews, and carried into the Havannah, from whence he had got his redemption by means of the governor of Annapolis; that he was in the most deplorable circumstances, having nothing to p. 111help himself with, and hoped he would commiserate his condition. Having finished his petition, away he went to the miller’s house, where Mr. Whitfield lodged, and found a hundred people waiting at the door to speak to that gentleman. Looking narrowly around, he espied a young lad, whom he found belonged to Mr. Whitfield, and going up to him very civilly, he begged he would do an unfortunate man the kindness to present that paper (giving him his petition) to Mr. Whitfield: and as soon as they perceived him, the quakers pressed round him, one crying, Pray thee, friend, come and pray by my dear wife; and another, Pray thee, friend, come and see my dear brother. Mr. Whitfield made his way through them all, as well as he could, towards Mr. Carew, whom the young lad pointed out to him. When he came up to him, he kindly said that he was heartily sorry for his misfortunes, but that we were all liable to them, that they happened by the will of God, and therefore it was our duty to submit to them with patience and resignation; then, pulling out his pocket-book, he gave him three or four pounds of that county paper-money. Mr. Carew returned him thanks with all the marks of the most lively gratitude, and Mr. Whitfield wishing him well to England, went away singing psalms with those that were about him; and we make no doubt but Mr. Carew joined with them in the melody of the heart for the good success he had had with Mr. Whitfield.
From hence Bampfylde was only seven miles to the city of Philadelphia, which is one of the finest in all America, and one of the best laid out cities p. 112in the world. It is the capital of Pennsylvania, and, were it full of houses and inhabitants, according to the proprietor’s plan, it would be a capital fit for a great empire; yet it is a large city, considering its late foundation, most commodiously situated between two navigable rivers, the Delaware and Schuylkill. He designed the town in form of an oblong square, extending two miles in length from one river to the other. The long streets, eight in number, and two miles in length, he cut in right angles by others of one mile in length, and sixteen in number, all straight and spacious. He left proper spaces for markets, parades, quays, meeting-houses, schools, hospitals, and other public buildings. There are a great number of houses, and it increases every day in buildings, which are all carried on regularly, according to the first plan. The city has two fronts on the water, one on the east side facing to Schuylkill, and the other on the west, facing the Delaware, which is near two miles broad, and navigable three hundred miles, at least for small vessels. The eastern part is the most populous, on account of the Schuylkill, which is navigable eight hundred miles above the falls. We have observed, that each front of the street was to be two miles from river to river, as it was at first laid out; but one cannot suppose that it is finished in that manner. The streets that run against the Schuylkill are three quarters of a mile in length; the houses are stately, the wharfs and warehouses numerous and convenient. This city flourished so much at first, that there were near a hundred houses, great and small in it, in less than a year’s time; and it has made answerable progress since p. 113that period; the number of houses, at this time, being about two thousand, and, generally speaking, better edifices than in the cities of England, a few excepted, and those only in a few streets. All the houses have large orchards and gardens belonging to them; the land on which the city stands is high and firm, and the convenience of covered docks and springs have very much contributed to the commerce of this place, where many rich merchants now reside, some of whom are so wealthy that they keep their coaches. Ships may ride in six or seven fathoms water, with a very good anchorage; the land about it is a dry wholesome level. All owners of one thousand acres and upwards have their houses in the two fronts, facing the rivers, and in the High-street, running from the middle of one front to the middle of the other. Every owner of one thousand acres has about an acre in front, and the smaller purchasers about half an acre in the back streets, by which means the least has room enough for a house-garden and small orchard. High-street is a hundred feet broad, so is Broad-street, which is in the middle of the city, running from north to south. In the centre is a square of ten acres, for the state-house, market-house, and school-house, as before hinted. The names of the streets here denote the several sorts of timber that are common in Pennsylvania, as Mulberry-street, Sassafras-street, Chesnut-street, Walnut-street, Beech-street, Ash-street, Vine-street, Cedar-street. There are also King-street, Broad-street, High-street. Their court-house is built of brick, and under it is a prison: several houses on the quay are worth four or five thousand p. 114pounds; and thirteen ships have been on the stocks at a time: some hundreds have been built there. The cellars and warehouses, on the quay, are made over the river three stories high. Here are two fairs in a year, and two markets in a week. It sends two members to the assembly.
The inhabitants were at first mostly quakers, and so they continue. It was some time before there was a church built after the manner of England; but as soon as one was built, it was called Christchurch. It had, in a few years, a very numerous congregation, and King William ordered an allowance of fifty-three pounds a-year to the minister; which, with voluntary contributions, made a very handsome provision for him. There are about twelve hundred of the inhabitants that are of this congregation, who have for some years had the benefit of the organ; and though it looked and sounded strange to the quakers at first, yet they are now so far reconciled to it, as to bear with their neighbours having it without grumbling. There are, besides this, several meeting-houses; viz., for the quakers, who are properly the church as by law established, being the originals; the presbyterians, the baptists, and a Spanish church.
According to the plan, there is in each quarter of the city a square of eight acres, intended for the same uses as were Moorfields in London—walks and exercises for the citizens. The great dock is formed by an inlet of the river Delaware, at the south corner of the front of the wharfs, and has a bridge over it at the entrance: several creeks run into the city out of the two rivers; and there is no city in Holland that is so naturally p. 115accommodated with fine and commodious canals, as this might very easily be. The quay is beautiful, about two hundred feet square, to which a ship of five hundred tons may lay her broadside; and, as these surprising advantages have already rendered it one of the best trading towns in the British empire out of Europe, so in all probability it will continue to increase in commerce, riches, and buildings, till for number and magnificence it will have no equal in America; where the French have not, nor are likely to have, any thing like it. Here are almost all sorts of trades and mechanics, as well as merchants and planters. Here the assemblies and courts of judicature are held, and the business of the province is chiefly managed, as in all capitals. Here are printing-houses, and several newspapers published. In a word, here are all things necessary for an Englishman’s profit and pleasure.
Mr. Carew, walking through the High-street, had a mind to refresh himself with a nip of punch; the first public house he chanced to come to was kept by an Irishman, and asking him if he sold punch, Yes, my dear honey, replied the man. Arrah, says Mr. Carew, are you my countryman, dear joy? quite in the Irish brogue. Yes, replied the man: What, do you belong to one of our vessels?—No, but I belong to Captain Dubois, of Dublin, who was taken off the Capes, and carried into the Havannah.—Arrah, dear joy, I know Captain Dubois very well, replied the Irishman, come in. Accordingly in went Mr. Carew: the Irishman was so well pleased with his countryman, (for, giving a very particular account of many p. 116places in Ireland, and counterfeiting the brogue extremely well, he did not suspect him to be any other,) that he entertained him kindly, and they passed the day merrily together.
The next morning his host takes him out to see the city: Mr. Carew did not content himself with idly gazing, as most of our modern travellers do; but diligently inquired the names of the principal merchants and places, and informed himself of all those circumstances, which could be of any service to him. At length, seeing a very fine house, he inquired whose it was; and being told Proprietor Penn’s, who was just come from England with his brother-in-law, Captain Frame, he takes leave of his host, telling him he had a little business to transact, and would be at home presently, for he should be able to find his way back without his staying for him.—Having thus got rid of the Irishman, he claps his right hand into his coat, as if he had lost the use of it; and then, going up to the proprietor’s, knocks at the door, which was opened to him by a negro, with a silver collar round his neck: he inquired if the proprietor lived there, and if he was at home: being told he was, Pray tell him, says he, that a poor man desires the favour of speaking with him. The negro then bid him come into the court: soon after, out came the proprietor, very plainly dressed, and his brother, Captain Frame, in his regimentals. The proprietor came up to him, inquiring who he was, and what he wanted with him: he replied he was a poor unfortunate man, who craved his honour’s charitable assistance: that his name was John Dawkins, of the city of Exeter; and that he p. 117belonged to Captain Davis’s ship of that place, who was taken near the Capes. Captain Frame, seeing him a lusty tall fellow, presently cries out, revenge! revenge! my brave boy! you shall go along with me, and fight the dogs! Mr. Carew replied with a sigh, that he should be glad to do that, but that, it was his misfortune, by the severities and hardships in prison, to have lost the use of his right arm by the dead palsy. This moved their compassion so much, that each of them gave him a guinea; the proprietor telling him he would take care to send him home with Captain Read, who would sail, very soon; then asking him if he had been at the governor’s, and he replying in the negative, the proprietor told him he should go there, for he was a very good-natured man, and would assist him; then calling to the black, he bid him show the poor man to the governor’s. As they were going along, he informed himself of the black what countryman the governor was; and being told a Welshman, and his name Thomas, he took care to make his advantage of it. When he came to the governor’s and inquired for him, he was told he was walking in the garden; while he was waiting for his coming out, in came the proprietor and his brother; and, going into the garden, they represented his case to the governor, who, coming in, inquired where he was born, &c.; he told him, as he had before done the proprietor, and added, that he had married Betty Larkey, parson Griffy’s maid, of Wales, and that the parson had a son at Bishop’s Nympton, in Devon: the governor replied he knew the parson very well, and likewise Betty Larkey; and p. 118after he had asked him some questions about them, which Mr. Carew answered very readily, he gave him two guineas.
In this manner did he apply to the most of the principal merchants of Philadelphia, always suiting some circumstances of his story in particular to the person he applied to; which he did, by diligently inquiring what places they came from in England, who were their friends and acquaintance, and the like, which he knew how to suit most to his purpose.
Captain Read being now ready to sail, and Mr. Carew having a curiosity of seeing more of the country, he thought proper to leave Philadelphia without taking leave of any of his good friends there. From this place he went into Buckingham county, where he inquired for one George Boon, a justice of the peace in that county, who formerly lived at Bradnich, in Devon, his father being a weaver there. Here he went by his own name, telling him, he had been taken prisoner, and carried into the Havannah, where he had lain many months. The justice having known his father very well, entertained him generously, showed him the country, and gave him three guineas at his departure, to help to pay his passage.
From thence he went to Burlington, the first town in West New-Jersey, which contains about two hundred and fifty families, and has an answerable number of acres laid out for plantations. The houses are well built, and almost all of brick. The market affords plenty of all sorts of provisions, which are as good here as any where in America.
p. 119From thence to Perth Amboy, so called in honour of the Duke of Perth. It is at the mouth of the Rantan, which runs into Sandyhook bay, and is able to contain five hundred ships. The plan of this city was laid out very regularly and spaciously. The plot of ground was divided into one hundred and fifty shares, for purchasers to build upon. Four acres are preserved for a market-place, and three for public wharfage—very useful things, if there had been inhabitants, trade, and shipping. The town being thus skilfully and commodiously laid out, some Scots began building, especially a house for the governor, which was then as little wanted as a wharf or a market. The whole plan of the city consists of one thousand and seventy-nine acres, and there are two good roads from it to Piscataqua and Woodbridge. Ships in one tide can come up to the port, and be at the merchants’ doors, though of three hundred tons burden; but the Perth city has not above two or three hundred men, women, and children.
From thence over a ferry, into a town called Trent-town, in Staten-island; and from thence over Brunswick ferry to East Jersey, where he found out a Mr. Matthews, a miller, who formerly lived at Whitechurch, near Lime, in Dorset; and, making use of his old story of having been taken, he was received by Mr. Matthews with great hospitality; he kept him three days in his house, and would have entertained him still longer. At his departure he gave him a guinea, with several letters of recommendation, and remitted letters by him to his friends in England, sending his servant p. 120with him as far as Elizabeth town, which is three miles within a creek opposite to the west end of Staten-island. Here the first English settlement was made, and if any place in the Jerseys may be said to have thriven, it is this; for, notwithstanding the endeavours of the proprietors to make a capital of Perth, by calling it a city, Elizabeth town has near six times the number of inhabitants, containing above two hundred and fifty families, and forty thousand acres of land laid out. Here the proprietors have a plantation, which goes by the name of their farm. The government of the province is here managed, courts are kept, assemblies held, and the greatest part of the trade of the colony carried on. Here he met with one Mr. Nicholas, a Cornish man, who gave him a ten-shilling bill, and recommended him to one Mr. Anderson, in Long-island, sometimes called Nassau-island, stretching from Fairfield county, in a fine spot of ground, one hundred and fifty miles in length, and twenty in breadth. Here he changed his religion, and turned Presbyterian, most of the inhabitants being of that denomination: he travelled quite through the island, and then crossed over a ferry into Block-island, from whence there are great quantities of timber transported to the town of Boston.
Soon after, crossing another ferry, he came into New York, which is a very fine city. There are now about one thousand one hundred houses, and near seven thousand inhabitants in it. The houses are well built, the meanest of them is said to be worth one hundred pounds, which cannot be said of any city in England. The great church here p. 121was built in the year 1695, and is a very handsome edifice. Here are also a Dutch church, a French church, and a Lutheran church. The inhabitants of the Dutch extraction make a very considerable part of the town; but, most of them speaking English, one may suppose they went pretty much to the great church, especially all those that are and hope to be in offices. Here he was surprised at the sight of a great number of gibbets, with blacks hanging upon them; but, upon inquiring, he found the negroes had not long before entered into a conspiracy for burning the whole city; however, the plot being timely discovered, great numbers were executed and hung up to terrify others. His first care here was to inquire the names, circumstances, families, and countries, of the principal inhabitants of the city; amongst the rest he inquired out Captain Lush, who was formerly of Carmouth, by Lime, in Dorsetshire, to whom he had recommendatory letters from Mr. Matthews, of East Jersey. He was received very hospitably by Captain Lush, who likewise gave him two shirts, and informed him, there was no ship ready to sail for England there, but that he would find one at New London. Having found there was one Mr. Lucas, formerly of Taunton, in Somersetshire, in New York, and judging he was brother to Mr. Lucas, of Brampton, in Devon, whom he knew very well, he went boldly to his house, which was in the fish-shambles, and knocking at the door, it was opened to him by a negro; he enquired if Mr. Lucas was at home; and, before the negro could give him an answer, out came Mr. Lucas with a little boy, and demanded what p. 122he wanted: he replied he was an Englishman, born in Devonshire, who had the misfortune to be cast away in a ship behind Long-island, and hearing his name was Lucas, he had made bold to apply to him for his assistance, as he was very well acquainted with his brother, Mr. Lucas, of Brampton. Mr. Lucas asked him, if he could tell him whom his brother married; he replied, Mrs. Mary Tristam. Do you know Huntsham? Yes, replied he, and Mr. Beer, who first courted Mrs. Tristam. And how many children has my brother? To this likewise Mr. Carew answered very exactly; and Mr. Lucas, being convinced by this of his being no imposter, bid him come in, telling him, he expected his youngest brother there in three weeks time. He was entertained here very generously, and at his departure Mr. Lucas gave him two guineas.
From thence he went through Seabrake and Seaford to New London, which is situated on a river called the Thames. The first branch of which river goes by the name of Glass river, the next branch by that of Russel’s Delight, and the third by that of Indian river. There is a small river which falls into the sea at Manchester. The trade of ship building flourishes here. He now inquired if there were none of the name of Davy in that city; and being asked why, he replied, they were near heirs to a fine estate near Crediton in Devon, formerly belonging to Sir John Davy. He was then shown to two ancient sisters of Sir John Davy, whose sons were timbermen: they asked a great many questions about the family, and he told them that Sir John Davy was dead, p. 123and his eldest son also, who had left two sons; that the youngest brother, Humphrey Davy, was then living at Creedy-house, and the little boys somewhere about Exeter. Then they gave him two letters to give to Mr. Humphrey Davy; after which, each gave him a guinea, with recommendations to one Justice Miller and Captain Rogers, who was bound for England. Justice Miller received him very kindly, with whom he agreed to take a run to England for ten gallons of rum, ten pounds of sugar, ten pounds of tobacco, and ten pipes.
Captain Rogers having taken in his lading, which consisted of rice, tobacco, and pipe staves, set sail with a fair wind from New London, and run to Lundy in a month and three days. Nothing happened material on their voyage, and the sailors passed this time very joyfully, having so favourable a gale; but our hero, who knew that fortune, like a common jilt, often puts on the fairest smiles when she is about to discard you, thought it prudent to provide against her slippery tricks as much as lay in his power; he therefore pricked his arms and breast with a needle, and then rubbed it with bay salt and gunpowder, which made it appear like the small-pox coming out; in the night-time he groaned very dismally, till at length the captain called to him to know the reason of his groaning so in his sleep. Alas! Sir, replied he, I have been dreaming my poor wife was dead, and that she died of the small-pox. Be of good cheer, man, says the captain, dreams are but fables; and, for your comfort, I believe we shall quickly make land: however, they did not do this as soon as the p. 124captain expected; for, towards the next evening, the wind springing up a fresh gale, the captain ordered to stand out to sea again: during all the day, Mr. Carew did not stir out of his hammock, pretending to be very ill. Towards the morning, the wind was somewhat laid, and they stood in before it; but it being very hazy weather, the captain ordered a good look-out, crying, my brave boys, take care we don’t run foul of some ship, for we are now in the channel. The men replied, all is well.
Now the cocks began to crow on board, and Sol took his last embrace of Thetis, to begin his daily stage; for, indeed, already had his equipage waited near an hour for him. Reader, if thou art acquainted with the inimitable history of Tom Jones, thou mayest perhaps know what is meant by this; but, lest thou shouldest not, we think it not improper to inform thee, that we mean no more than what we might have told thee in three words, that it was broad day-light. The captain called out, how goes the glass, my brave boys? Eight glasses are just run, replied the men; then look out sharp for land. Soon after, the cabin boy hallooing out, land, land! the captain ran nimbly to see if it was so, saying, I am afraid we are embayed. No, replied the mate, I will be bound for it, it is Lundy-island. The captain ran up immediately to the main-topmast head, to look out for other lands to the right and left, and found it to be indeed Lundy-island; upon which several sailors ran up the rigging, and, among the rest, Mr. Carew creeps out with nothing but a blanket upon his shoulders, and makes an attempt to run up the p. 125rigging; which the captain seeing, he hastily cries out, where is old John going? take care of the old man, he is light-headed: upon which, some of the sailors took him down, and carried him back to his hammock. They then crowded all the sail they could for Lundy. When they came near, they perceived several ships laying at anchor there, and made a signal for a pilot. Soon after comes up a pilot of Clovelly, who was then upon the island, waiting to pilot ships up to Bristol. The captain welcomed him on board, and agreed for seven guineas to be pilotted up to Bristol: then the captain asked him what news, and if any New-England men were gone up the channel? He replied, that none had passed, but that he could inform him of bad news for his men, which was, the Ruby man-of-war, Captain Goodyre, lay then in King-road, and pressed all the men he could lay hold of. Mr. Carew, hearing this, immediately comes upon deck, with his blanket upon his shoulders, and pretended to vomit over the ship’s side. The pilot, observing him, asked what was the matter with the old man. I believe, replies the captain, he has got the small-pox; he dreamed the other night that his wife was dead of them, which frightened him so much, that I think the small-pox is come out upon him. The pilot then stepped up and asked him to let him look upon him, which he complying with, and showing him his arms, the pilot swore he had got the small-pox heavily upon him, and Mr. Carew kept on groaning very mournfully. They then sailed by Appledore, Biddeford, and Barnstaple, (where Mr. Carew, notwithstanding his having the small-pox p. 126so heavily, wished himself on shore, drinking some of their fat ale,) so to the Holmes, and into King-road early in the morning. He then thought it advisable to take a pretty large quantity of warm water into his belly, and soon after, to their concern, they saw the Ruby man-of-war lying in the road, with jack, ensign, and pendant hoisted.
Now were all the sailors, who had been so jovial before, struck with a dreadful panic; but our hero, secure of the favour and protection of the goddess prudence, was quite easy at heart.—Soon they perceived the man of war’s boat making towards them, upon which Mr. Carew grew sicker and sicker: the captain ordered the ropes to be flung out for a man-of-war’s boat, and the stanchions and red ropes to be got ready for the lieutenant, as though they had been to receive some good visitor on board; such are the polished arts of the world; for we think we may venture to say, that both the captain and the crew, at the time they were making these preparations to receive the lieutenant, had rather have seen him gone to the bottom of the sea, than come on board their vessel. At length the man-of-war’s boat came along side of the ship, when Mr. Carew went down into the steerage with his belly full of hot water, and the lieutenant came on board. Sir, you are welcome on board, says the captain; or, rather, that little part of the captain called the tongue; for the heart, mind, and every other particle, of the captain wished him at the d---l at the same time. The lieutenant inquired from whence they came and what passage. The captain replied, from Boston, in a month and four p. 127days; and then asked him to walk aft, and take a drop of rum; but, before he did so, the lieutenant asked how many hands there were on board. The captain answered, he had only fifteen, for men were very scarce. Of what burden is your ship?—Two hundred and fifty tons. I must have your hands, sir, said the lieutenant: come in, barge crew, and do your duty. No sooner were the words spoken, than the crew leaped upon the deck, and the lieutenant ordered all the ship’s company aft, saying he wanted to talk with them. He then accosted them with an oratorial harangue: “Gentlemen sailors,” said he, “I make no doubt but you are willing to enter voluntarily, and not as pressed men; if you go like brave men, freely, when you come round to Plymouth and Portsmouth, and get on board your respective ships, you will have your bounty money, and liberty to go on shore and kiss your landladies.” Though this oration was pronounced with as much self-applause as Cicero felt when, by the force of his eloquence, he made Cæsar the master of the world to tremble; or as the vehement Demosthenes, when used to thunder against king Philip; yet we are not quite certain whether it was the power of eloquence alone persuaded the men to enter voluntarily, or whether being seated between the two rocks of Scylla and Charybdis, it was indifferent to them which they dashed upon; however this was, all but one of them entered (though with sad hearts) without being pressed, which we make no doubt the lieutenant attributed to the eloquence of his oration.
The lieutenant observing a stout fellow, in a p. 128frock and trowsers, who did not come aft with the other men, asked the captain who he was. The captain replied, he was an Indian, and a brave sailor, so called him by his name. Wat ye want wit mee, replies the Indian, mee wont come, dammee. Upon which the lieutenant sent some of the barge crew to bring him forward which the brave Indian perceiving, he caught hold of a handspike, and put himself in a posture of defence, crying out to the barge crew who came up towards him, dammee, ye meddle wit mee, mee dash your brains out. The crew, finding him resolute, did not think proper to attack him: upon which the lieutenant asked him, if he would serve king George. Dam king George, mee know no king George: mee be an Indian, mee have a king in my own country, whom mee love and fightee for, because he be de very good king: at which the lieutenant and captain fell a laughing, and left him.
Are these all your men? says the lieutenant. Yes, replied the captain, except an old man, who dreamed the other night that his wife died of the small-pox, and was so much frightened, that the small-pox is come out upon him. The captain then ordered the bills to be made for what was due to the men, and asked the lieutenant in the mean while to walk down and taste his rum. Accordingly down comes the lieutenant, humming a tune. Mr. Carew, hearing this, prepared himself, and, taking an opportunity of putting his finger down his throat, discharges his stomach just under the lieutenant’s feet, crying out in a most lamentable tone at the same time, O, my head! p. 129O my back! What! cried the lieutenant very hastily, is this the fellow who has the small-pox? No, no, replied Carew; I have had the small-pox many years ago, and have been with Sir Charles Wager and Sir George Walton up the Baltic; and now, for God’s sake, take me on board your ship, noble captain, for I want only to be blooded. The lieutenant whipped out his snuff box, and clapped it to his nose, swearing, he would not take him on board for five hundred pounds, for he was enough to infect a whole ship’s crew; that the devil should take him before he would—hurrying at the same time as fast as he could into the great cabin. When he came there, Mr. Carew heard him complaining how unfortunate it was that he should come on board, as he had never had the small-pox himself. When the rest of the men had had their bills made out, the captain, willing to get rid of Mr. Carew, said to him, come, old John, I will have your bill made to; which was accordingly done, and it amounted to seven pounds ten shillings, for which the captain gave him a draught on merchant Tidiate of Bristol. The captain then ordered the boat to put him on shore; but he besought the captain to let him die on board. No, no, says the captain; by all means take him on shore. Ay, ay, says the lieutenant, take him on shore. Then the captain called to some of the sailors, to help the poor old man over the side of the ship, and out came Mr. Carew, with the blanket wrapped about his shoulders, and so well did he counterfeit, that he seemed a most deplorable object of compassion. The boat having p. 130got a little distance from the ship, was called back again, and the lieutenant tossed him half-a-guinea, charging him not to go into the city of Bristol, as he was enough to infect the whole city.
Thus our hero, after seeing many cities and men, undergoing great hardships, and encountering many dangers and difficulties, once more set foot on his beloved country. Notwithstanding the joy he felt at being safe on shore, he did not lay aside his small-pox, but travelled on towards Bristol as one very bad in that distemper. Coming to Justice Cann’s, near Derham Downs, he met with the gardener, whom he asked if the justice lived there, and was at home? Being told he was, he made a most lamentable moan, and said, he was just come from New England, and had the small-pox on him. The gardener went into the house, and, soon returning, told him the justice was not at home; but gave him half-a-crown. He still kept crying, I am a dying man, and I beseech you let me lie and die in some hay-tallet, or any place of shelter. The gardener, seeing him so ill, went in again, and brought out a cordial dram, and a mug of warm ale, which Mr. Carew made shift to swallow. The gardener then left him, being so much affrighted at his appearance and lamentable moans, that he let both glass and mug fall to the ground, before he reached the house. Mr. Carew then made a shift, notwithstanding his dying condition, to reach the city of Bristol; and being now freed from his apprehensions of being pressed, at the first barber’s he came to he got rid of his beard, and bid adieu to the small-pox; he then p. 131made the best of his way to the mendicants’ hall, on Mile-hill. Just as he came there, the landlady and an old croney, a tinker’s wife, were standing at the door; as soon as the landlady espied him, she clapped her hands, and swore it was either Mr. Carew or his ghost. As soon as they were convinced he was flesh and blood, great were the kisses, hugs, and embraces, of the three. Our hero’s first inquiry was, when they had seen his dear Polly, meaning his wife: the landlady told him she had not seen her lately, but had heard that she and his daughter were well; but that his wife never expected to see him more.
Mr. Carew soon called for a room above stairs, ordered an elegant dinner to be provided, and passed the afternoon very merrily. The next morning he waited on the merchant with his bill, and received the money for it; then weighed anchor, and steered for Bridgewater, where he arrived at night. He immediately repaired to a mumper’s house, kept by a one-eyed woman, named Laskey, from whence he went to the Swan, where several gentlemen were passing the evening together, viz. Mr. More, Dr. Deptford, Counsellor Bedford, and others, all of whom were particularly acquainted with him; however, he pretended to be a West Indian who had been cast away in a ship, coming from Antigua, which foundered behind Cape Clear; that he was taken up by an Irishman, and afterwards put on board a Bristol ship. Having by this story raised a handsome contribution from the gentlemen, he discovered himself, knowing them to be his good friends; but the gentlemen could scarcely credit him, till he p. 132gave them sufficient proofs of his being the real Bampfylde Moore Carew.
The next morning he went to Sir John Tynte, and made the same complaint he had done the night before at the Swan in Bridgewater: the servant telling him Sir John would come forth soon, he waited till he did so, and then discovered himself; Sir John would not believe him, but at last made him a present. He afterwards visited Justice Grose, of Bromfylde, who presently knew him, and made him very welcome; from whence, setting out for Exeter, he visited on the road Mr. John Bampfylde, of Hesticomb, the Rev. Mr. Boswell, and Dr. Hildyard, of Taunton, the Rev. Mr. Manifee, Squire Bluet, of Melcombe Regis, the Rev. Mr. Newt, of Tiverton, Squire Blundel, and Major Worth, in the neighbourhood of that place, who, being all his particular friends, were very glad to see him return, and treated him very handsomely. Major Worth took a hunting with him: but he soon found an opportunity of slipping away, and directed his steps to his own parish of Bickley. Here he happened to meet Lady Carew; but so great was his respect for her, that he, who used to attempt every thing, had not courage to accost this lady, and therefore turned off to a place called Codbury, the seat of Mr. Fursdon. As soon as he came there, he was known to Mr. Fursdon’s sister, who told him he should not stir thence till her brother came home; soon after Mr. Fursdon returned, and brought with him one Mr. Land, of Silverton: he was very much surprised to see him, and treated him very generously, making him a very handsome present, as did also Mr. p. 133Land. He abode there that night, went a hunting with Mr. Fursdon the next day, and likewise to see Mr. Bampfylde Rode, at Stoke, who would not believe Mr. Carew had been in America; he treated him handsomely, and made him a present at his departure. He came next into Exeter, the place he had sailed from to Maryland, and going into St. Peter’s church-yard, saw Sir Henry Northcote, Dr. Andrews, and two other gentlemen, who were walking there; he accosted them with a God bless you, Sir Harry, Dr. Andrews, and the rest of the company. Sir Harry, staring very wistfully at him, cried, are you flesh and blood? why you can never have been in America? Dr. Andrews then asked if it was Carew; and the report being spread that he was in Exeter, it drew a number of spectators to see him; and amongst the rest merchant Davy himself, who asked him, in a very great hurry, if the ship was cast away. No, no, said he, I have been in America, have had the honour of seeing your factor, Mr. Mean, and saw Griffiths sold for a thousand weight of tobacco: did I not tell you that I would be at home before Captain Froade? He then gave an account of several particulars, which convinced the gentlemen he had really been in America. Mr. Davy asked him, if he had been sold before he ran away; and he replying he had not, the merchant told him jeeringly, that he was his servant still, that he should charge him five pounds for his passage, and five pounds for costs and charges, besides Captain Froade’s bill. He next inquired where he had left Captain Froade. Mr. Carew told him he had left him in Miles’s river. The gentlemen p. 134then gave him money, as did likewise merchant Davy.
Two months after this came home Captain Froade, laden with tobacco. As soon as he came to an anchor, several gentlemen of Exeter went on board, and inquired what passage, and where he left Mr. Carew? Damn him, replied the captain, you will never see him again: he ran away, was taken, put into New Town gaol, brought back again, and whipped, had a pot-hook put upon him, ran away with it on his neck, and has never been heard of since; so that, without doubt, he must either be killed by some wild beast, or drowned in some river. At this the gentlemen fell a laughing, telling the captain he had been at home two months before him. Captain Froade swore it could never be; however, they confirmed it to him that it was so.
Soon after this Mr. Carew went and paid his respects to Sir William Courtenay, returning him many thanks for what he had furnished him with when he sailed for Maryland; adding, he had been as good as his word, in coming home before Captain Froade. Sir William told him he thought he had; and then called to his butler to give him something to drink. In a little time Sir William came to him again, with his brother, Mr. Henry Courtenay, who conducted him to a noble parlour, where was a great company of fine ladies sitting, whom our hero accosted with all that respect which is ever due to beauty and merit. Sir William then asked him jocosely if he could find out which was his dove. He replied, he knew some of the ladies there; and that, unless his p. 135judgment deceived him, such a lady, (singling out one of them) was the happy person. You are right, replied Sir William; this is indeed my dove, and turtle-dove. Sir William then put a piece of money in his hat, as did Mr. Courtenay, and bid him go round to the ladies, which he did, addressing them in a very handsome manner; and, we need not add, gathered a plentiful harvest, as the fair sex are, in general, so much inclined to humanity and good-nature. Sir William asked him if he would not drink to the ladies’ health? and filled him up a bumper of excellent wine; he then took his leave of this truly noble and hospitable gentleman.—Here, reader, if my pen were equal to the task, I would describe to you one whom, in this degenerate age, thou mayest gaze at as a prodigy; one who, like the phœnix rising from the ashes of his father, inherits all the virtues of his glorious ancestors; I would describe to you magnificence without extravagance, pomp without ostentation, plenty without luxury or riot, and greatness undiminished by little pride; I would set before you something more than a king, surrounded and imprisoned by worthless and impervious favourites, fawning sycophants, and tasteless grandeur. Such are the scenes within thy walls, such thy master, happy Powderham!
From hence our hero went to Squire Bell’s, of Mamheap; in the way he met with Mr. Jackson, his steward, who was lame with the gout; he presently knew Mr. Carew, gave him half-a-crown, and told him, he would hop back on his crutches to give him something to drink. While they were drinking a glass, the steward advised p. 136him to make application to the squire. Presently after, he came out, and Mr. Carew soon began his attack upon him. Pray, who are you? said the justice. I am a poor unfortunate West Indian, replied he, who has been shipwrecked on the coast of Ireland, and was taken up by a Bristol ship. Ay, ay, you are one of Carew’s gang, I suppose, said the justice, but he is transported. Bless your honour, returned he, I am no impostor; I have heard that he was a very great one, and I think deserved more than transportation. Well, well, there’s a shilling for you, replied the justice, and go about your business.
From hence he steered towards Mr. Oxenham’s, at New-house: when he came near the house, he pulled off his shirt, and gave it to an old man he met, as though he had been amazed: then marched up to the house, and just at the stable met Mrs. Oxenham and another lady, whom he immediately accosted with a doleful complaint of being a poor shipwrecked mariner. Mrs. Oxenham told him, she should have taken him for Bampfylde Moore Carew, but she knew him to be transported. He was not disconcerted at this, but readily told her, with great composure, that his name was Thomas Jones, belonging to Bridport, in Dorsetshire. The ladies gave each a shilling, and then bid him to go into the house, where he had victuals set before him; before he went away the lady sent him a Holland shirt. Being thus equipped, he inquired out the churchwardens of the parish, and by the same story got a crown of them. From hence he went to Lord Clifford’s, at Uggbroke, in the parish of Chudleigh: here he sent in a petition to my p. 137Lord as an unfortunate Roman Catholic, and received a guinea; he lay that night at Sandy-gate, and behaved as a Roman Catholic, under the name of William Passmore.
The next day, at Moll Upton’s, in Newton Bushel, he met with one of the sisters of that order of mendicants commonly called cousin Betties; and he, having an inclination to pay a visit to Sir Thomas Carew, at Hackum, soon made an agreement with the cousin Betty to exchange habits for that day. The barber was then called in to make his beard as smooth as his art and razor could make it, and his hair was dressed up with ribbons; thus metamorphosed, our hero set out, having a little dog under his arm. Being come to Sir Thomas Carew’s, he rushed into the house without ceremony, demanding his rent in an imperious tone. None of the men-servants being in the way, the women first ran one way and then another; but he, taking notice of this confusion, continued to act the mad woman, beating his head against the wall, kissing the dog, and demanding his rent; at last, one of the women-servants came out, crying, lady, you are welcome to the rent, and gave him a crown; but he was not to be removed so easily, for now he fell a raving again, and demanded some merry-go-down; they then brought him some ale, which having drunk, he took his leave, thanking them with a very low courtesy. From hence he returned in his progress to parson Sandford’s, of Stoke, in Tinney, where, having entered the house with as little ceremony as before, he not only demanded his rent, as usual, but a gown for some of his cousins: neither would he take his leave p. 138till he had got a shilling for rent, a good gown, and some pinners. He next called upon parson Richards, at Coombe, in Tinney, where he got a shilling and a shift. Having thus succeeded in his new adventure, he returned to his quarters at mother Upton’s, in Newton-Bushel, where he divided the profits of the day with his good cousin Betty, and also passed the night very merrily with her.
The next day he restored his borrowed accoutrements to cousin Betty, and, calling for a pen and ink, wrote a petition in the character of a poor unfortunate soap-boiler, whose house was set on fire by the carelessness of an apprentice, in the parish of Monksilver, not forgetting to sign it with the names of several neighbouring gentlemen. With this fictitious petition he went to Justice Taylor’s, at Dembury, where he was handsomely relieved: thence he went to Justice Neil’s, and finding upon inquiry the justice himself was at home, he did not venture to deliver his petition, but begged as an unfortunate man, and was relieved with a cup of cider, and some bread and cheese. At Darlington he assumed the character of a rat-catcher, and sold a receipt to a gentleman’s steward for a crown: and under this character he travelled forward to Plymouth. Here, learning that there was to be a great cock-match, he laid aside his rat-catcher’s habit, and put on that of a gentleman, and not the habit only, as too many do, but the manners and behaviour likewise. At the cock-match, he betted several wagers with Sir Coventry Carew, and his own brother Mr. Henry Carew, the minister of Saltash, which he had p. 139the good fortune to win, and left the cock-pit undiscovered by any one. Thus great is the power of dress, which transforms and metamorphoses the beggar into a gentleman, and the cinder wench into a fine lady; therefore let not the little great (I mean those who have nothing to recommend them but their equipage) pride themselves as though they had something superior in them to the poor wretch they spurn with so much contempt; for, let me tell them, if we are apt to pay them respect, they are solely indebted for it to the mercer and tailor; strip them of their gaudy plumes, and we shall not be able to distinguish them from the lowest order of mumpers. This puts us in mind of a remarkable adventure of our hero’s life, which he always told with a great deal of pleasure.
One day, as he was begging in the town of Maiden Bradley, from door to door, as a poor shipwrecked seaman, he saw on the other side of the street a mendicant brother-sailor, in a habit as forlorn as his own, begging for God’s sake, just like himself. Seeing Mr. Carew, he crossed the way, came up to him, and in the cant language, asked where he lay last night, what road he was going, and several other questions; then, whether he would brush into a boozing-ken and be his thrums; to this he consented, and away they went; where, in the course of their conversation, they asked each other various questions concerning the country, the charitable and uncharitable families, the moderate and severe justices, the good and queer corporations. This new acquaintance of Mr. Carew’s asked him if he had been at Sir Edward p. 140Seymour’s? He answered, yes, and had received his alms: the stranger, therefore, not having been there, left him at the alehouse, and went thither himself, where, having received the same alms that his new companion had, he returned to him again.
The next day they begged through the town, one on one side of the street, and the other on the other, each on his own separate story and account: they then proceeded to the houses of several gentlemen in the neighbourhood, both in one story, which was that of the stranger. Among many others, they came to Lord Weymouth’s, where it was agreed that Mr. Carew should be spokesman: upon their coming up to the house, the servants bid them begone, unless they could give a good account of themselves and the countries in which they pretended to have been, for, should Lord Weymouth come and detect them in any falsehood, he would horse-whip them without mercy, which was the treatment to all those whom he found to be counterfeits met with from him, and he had detected great numbers of them, having been abroad himself. Our travellers were not the least daunted, Mr. Carew being conscious in himself that he could give a satisfactory account of Newfoundland, and the other affirming that he had been at Rome, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, &c. and could give as good a description of those countries as his lordship himself. Therefore up they went to the kitchen door, and Mr. Carew broke ice, telling the deplorable story of their misfortune in his usual lamentable tone. The housekeeper at first turned a deaf ear to their supplication and entreaty; but Mr. Carew, at the instigation of his p. 141companion, redoubled his importunity, kneeling on one knee, and making use of all the methods of exciting charity, of which he was capable; so that at last the housekeeper gave them the greatest part of a cold shoulder of mutton, half a fine wheaten loaf, and a shilling, but did it with great haste and fear, lest his lordship should see her, and be angry. Of the butler they got a copper of good ale, and then, both expressing their thankfulness, departed.—Having reached some distance from the house there arose a dispute who should carry the victuals, both being loath to incumber themselves with it, as having neither wife nor child near to give it to. Mr. Carew was for throwing it into the hedge, but the other urged that it was both a sin and a shame to waste good victuals in that manner, so they both agreed to go to the Green Man, about a mile from my lord’s, and there exchange it for liquor. At this alehouse they tarried for some time, and snacked the argot; then, after a parting glass, each went his way.
The reader cannot but be surprised when we assure him that this mendicant companion of his was no less a person than my Lord Weymouth himself, who, being desirous of sounding the tempers and dispositions of the gentlemen and other inhabitants of the neighbourhood, put himself into a habit so vastly beneath his birth and fortune, in order to obtain that discovery. Nor was this the first time that this great nobleman had metamorphosed himself into the despicable shape and character of a beggar, as several of that neighbourhood can testify; but, when he went abroad into the world in this disguise, he took especial care to p. 142conceal it even from his own family, one servant only, in whose secrecy he greatly confided, being entrusted therewith; and this was his valet-de-chambre, who used to dress, shave, and perform other such offices about his lordship’s person.
Mr. Carew and his noble companion having thus parted from each other, he took his way into the woodlands towards Frome; and the disguised lord, by a private way through the park and gardens, returned to his own house, and there, divesting himself of his rags, put on his embroidered apparel, and re-assumed the dignity and state to which both his birth and fortune entitled him. I am informed, said his lordship, that two sailors have been at my house; and, inquiring which way they went, he ordered two men and horses to go after them, with a strict charge to bring them back to his house, for he had heard they were impostors; and, if he found them such, he would treat them accordingly. The servants obeyed his commands without the least suspicion of the intricacy of this affair, and soon came up with Mr. Carew, whom they forcibly brought up to my lord. His lordship accosted him in a very rough stern manner, asking where the other fellow was, and told him he should be made to find him. Mr. Carew in the mean time stood thunder-struck, expecting nothing less than a commitment to prison, but, upon examination, made out his story as well as he could.
After having thus terrified and threatened him for a considerable time, his lordship went out, and, divesting himself of the habit and character of a nobleman, again put on his rags, and was, by his p. 143trusty valet-de-chambre, ushered into the room where his brother-beggar stood sweating for fear, when they compared notes together, whispering to each other what to say, in order that their accounts might agree when examined apart, as in effect they were. The steward took Mr. Carew aside into a private chamber, and there pretending that the other fellow’s relation contradicted his, and proved them both to be counterfeits, he said that a prison must be the portion of both; and indeed nothing was omitted that might strike Mr. Carew with the greatest terror and confusion. By this time my lord having thrown off his rags, and put on his fine apparel, Mr. Carew was again brought into his presence to receive his final sentence; when his lordship, having sufficiently diverted himself with the fear and consternation of his brother mumper discovered himself to him.
We might have mentioned before, that, while my lord and Mr. Carew travelled together, they asked each other whence they came, and what their names were. Mr. Carew ingeniously confessed his, but my lord disguised both his name and country; so that having accidentally met with a mendicant of the greatest note in England, his lordship thought fit to treat him in the manner aforesaid, which he would not have done to every common vagrant.—However, to satisfy himself that this was the famous and true Bampfylde Moore Carew, for many impostors had usurped his name, he sent for Captain Atkins, a gentleman of his acquaintance in the neighbourhood, who went to school with Mr. Carew at Tiverton. This gentleman was very glad to see his old school-fellow, p. 144and assured his lordship that it was really Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew, upon which his lordship very nobly entertained him at his house for the space of three days, and gave him an excellent suit of clothes and ten guineas; but, remembering the trouble they had, and the loss they were at to dispose of the shoulder of mutton and bread which the housekeeper had given them, as likewise the resolution Mr. Carew had once taken to throw it away, he called his housekeeper, and strictly charged her never to give away a morsel of victuals more, but bestow the alms in money only, rightly judging that to be more acceptable to beggars than the best of provisions, the greatest part of which they either waste, give away, or exchange for an inconsiderable quantity of drink, as my lord and Mr. Carew had done. His lordship took Mr. Carew to Warminster horserace, and there recommended him to many honourable gentlemen, who were very liberal to him. He several times after made bold to call upon his lordship in his rounds, and at every visit received a guinea, and a hearty welcome at his house. His lordship would frequently make himself merry with the story, and jocosely say, that he was more expert in the science of mumping than even Mr. Carew himself.
Not long after this, Mr. Carew came to Biddeford again, where he had been some time before, and delivered the compass to Captain Haley’s wife, who immediately burst into tears upon seeing it, supposing her husband was dead: he then went to the Dolphin, where, as he was drinking, he saw some gentlemen in the Butchers’ Row, and asked p. 145the landlord who they were. Being told they were the Captains Harvey, Hopkins, and Burd,—Go, said he, and give my duty, and tell them Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew is at your house. The landlord went accordingly, and soon returned with the captains. They were glad to see our hero, who returned them thanks for the favours he had received from them in America. The captains asked him a great many questions respecting his travels through the Indians’ country, &c., and told him they never thought he could have gone through that dangerous undertaking, but expected to have seen him return again. He then gave them an account of every thing to their satisfaction, telling them he had followed their directions in every point. They afterwards treated him very handsomely, and made a collection for him. The captains then going out, and reporting that he was in town, a great concourse of people assembled to see him, to the no little profit of the landlord; for our hero ordered that no one should be admitted to see him, till he had first drunk a quart of ale in the house.
Some time after this, he disguised himself like a poor miserable decrepid old man, and took to selling of matches and gathering old rags. Happening to meet a brother ragman at Wiveliscombe, they joined company, and agreed to travel to Porlock together. Just as they came to Gutter-Hall, night coming on a-pace, they proposed taking up their quarters there. The landlord told them he had no lodging to spare, but if they would go half-a-mile farther, and lie in a haunted house, they should have their lodging free cost, and good bread, p. 146cheese, and cider, with a rasher of bacon into the bargain. The ragmen very readily accepted this offer, and, accompanied by the landlord, repaired to Farmer Liddon’s house. When they came there the landlord told the farmer he had brought two men who would lie in the haunted house. The farmer received them very gladly, and asked them if they were sure they had courage enough to do it, adding he would give them twenty shillings if they could lay the old woman. Never fear, farmer, replied Mr. Carew; we have not only courage to speak to, but learning enough to lay, the old woman, so that you shall never hear of her more. Things being thus agreed on, the farmer’s son, a great stout fellow, willing to show his courage, in a very bold manner offered to keep them company. Having provided themselves with firing, cider, bread, cheese, and bacon, they adjourned to the haunted house, but not before Mr. Carew had taken an opportunity of going into the yard, and filling his pockets with large stones. When they came to the haunted house, they made a good fire, and he and his companion sat down, eating and drinking very merrily; but the farmer’s son, beginning to have some terrors upon him, had little stomach to eat. About the middle of the night, when every thing is most silent and solemn, at that time when every whisper of the mind is apt to create fear, Mr. Carew took an opportunity of throwing a stone unseen up the stairs, which, coming rumbling down again with a frightful noise, might have at that time struck a panic into the most courageous heart. The farmer’s son turned pale, and leaped from his chair in a great fright, p. 147believing that the old woman was making her entrance; but nothing appearing, the same awful silence and stillness as before took place, only fear staid behind in the farmer’s breast, and Mr. Carew and his companion kept mute, as though in expectation of what would follow; but soon this solemn silence was disturbed by a loud thump at the door; again the farmer leaped from his seat, crying out, O Lord! save and deliver us! At the same time, unable to command those passages at which fear is apt to issue out, he caused a smell almost as bad as Satan himself is said to bring along with him. Mr. Carew caught him in his arms, and, holding his head close to his breast, cried, don’t be afraid, Mr. Liddon, for I will make the old woman fly; at the same time, pretending to conjure her, he repeated three times very solemnly, “Hight spirito diabolico rubro oceano,” whilst his companion went a little aside, and answered in a squeaking tone, like Joan Liddon, unless my will is fulfilled, I will tear them in pieces.
Soon after cock-crowing, there was another huge blow at the door, and then they bid the farmer look up, telling him the old woman was gone; however, he would not let go his hold of Mr. Carew. Just as day-light appeared, his companion went forth, and picked up the stones from the stairs, entry, &c. He had scarce done this, before the old farmer came down, to see if his son was alive, and if they had seen old Joan. He accosted them with, How do you do? how have you spent the night? O father, replied the son, most terribly indeed. You can’t conceive what rattlings and noises we heard; but this good man secured p. 148me in his arms. But what smell is this? replied the father; sure old Joan stinks of brimstone, or something worse, if she brought this along with her. Ay, father, father, said the son, I believe you would have raised as bad a smell as I have done, if you had been here. Well, well, said the father, perhaps I might; but have you spoken to old Joan? Yes, indeed, replied Mr. Carew. And what does the old woman say? she says, if her will is not exactly fulfilled as she desired, she will never leave haunting you; but, if it be, all shall be well and quiet. They then went to the farmer’s house, where they were made very welcome, and received the twenty shillings, according to promise, the farmer requesting they would stay the next night by themselves, for he believed his son would have no stomach to go with them, and tell the old woman every thing should be fulfilled according to her will, and they should be satisfied to their content. They accordingly passed the next night there very merrily, and received another twenty shillings in the morning, which was well bestowed too by the farmer; for ever after the house had the reputation of being quiet.
Mr. Carew and his companion then set forward for Porlock, where they parted company; and Mr. Carew coming into Porlock, met Dr. Tanner, a relation of old Joan Liddon’s, and his brother, Parson Tanner, who was with him. After the usual salutations, he very composedly asked if they had heard the news of the conjuring old Joan? The doctor replied they had heard something of it, and that he was resolved either to send or take a ride over himself, to inquire into the truth of it. He p. 149confirmed it to them, which occasioned a great deal of discourse about it, and who these two conjurers could be.
We should, perhaps, have passed over in silence this adventure of our hero’s, but that an author of the first rate has taken a great deal of pains to frighten a poor soldier, and entertain his readers by dressing up his hero in a white coloured coat, covered with streams of blood; though we cannot well conceive how those streams of blood, which ran down the coat in the morning, should appear so very visible twenty hours after, in the middle of the night, and at a distance by the light of a single candle; notwithstanding this great author has very judicously acquainted us with a light-coloured coat; but however this may be, we are of opinion that the farmer’s son in the above adventure is a more entertaining character than the soldier in the renowned history we are speaking of; and that our hero, whenever it was needful, could make a much more tremendous figure than Mr. Jones in his white-coloured coat covered with streams of blood. The following is a sufficient instance.
Mr. Carew being in the town of Southmolton, in Devon, and having been ill used by a great officer, vulgarly called the bellman, was resolved to take comical revenge. It was about that time reported and generally believed, that a gentleman of the town, lately buried, walked by night in the church-yard; and, as the bellman was obliged by his nightly duty to go through it just at the hour of one, that well-known accustomed time of spectres issuing from their graves, Mr. Carew repaired p. 150there a little before the time, and, stripping to his shirt, lay down upon the gentleman’s grave. Soon after, hearing the bellman approach, he raised himself up with a solemn slowness; which the bellman beholding, by the glimmering light of the moon through some thick clouds, he was harrowed up (as Shakspeare expresses it) with fear and wonder, and an universal palsy seized every limb; but, as nature most commonly dictates flight in all such cases, he retreated with as much haste as his shaking limbs would allow; yet, as fear naturally inclines us to look back upon the object we are flying from, he several times cast his eyes behind him, and beheld the ghost follow him with a solemn march. This added fresh vigour to his flight, so that he tumbled over graves and stones, not without many bruises, and at length dropped his bell, which the ghost seized upon as trophy, and forbore any farther pursuit. The bellman, however, did not stop till he reached home, where he obstinately affirmed he had seen the gentleman’s ghost, who had taken away his bell, which greatly alarmed the whole town; and there were not wanting many who afterwards frequently heard the ghost ringing the bell in the church-yard.
It was some time before the bellman had the courage to resume his usual nightly rounds through the church-yard; but after a while, his fear abating, he ventured upon it again, and met with no interruption. Mr. Carew happening about a year afterwards to be in Southmolton again, was afresh insulted by the bellman, which made him resolve to give him a second meeting in the church-yard; taking therefore the opportunity of a very dark p. 151night, he dressed himself in a black gown, put a great fur cap upon his head, and at the usual time of the bellman coming, repaired to the church-yard, holding in his mouth, by the middle, a stick lighted at both ends, at the same time rattling a heavy iron chain. If the bellman’s terror before was great, it was now much greater; and indeed the appearance, joined to the rattling of the chain, was so hideous, that the boldest soldier might have been terrified by it, without any imputation of cowardice. The bellman fled away with all the wings of fear, the spectre following him at a distance, rattling the chain with a most hideous noise; hence the bellman concluded himself to be haunted by the devil, and declined ever after his nocturnal employment.
About this time Mr. Carew met with one Mr. Philips, a celebrated limner in Porlock, who showed him a great many pictures of different likenesses, and asked him if he knew any of them. He pointed out his old school-fellow, Edward Dyke, Esq., and Sir Thomas Carew. Mr. Philips then asked him if he would sit for his picture, as he had been desired to draw it for Mr. Copplestone Bampfylde; which our hero agreeing to, he went the next day, and the following, to sit for the picture, undisguised. When it was finished, Mr. Philips desired him to come again another time in his mumping dress, which he accordingly promised to do.
After this he went to Minehead, and called on several of his old acquaintance, viz. Dr. Bell, Parson Beer, and the Collector, who all treated him very kindly. Having raised contributions from p. 152these gentlemen, he repaired to his quarters, and desired them to lend him a pair of trowsers. Having a mind to try some of the neighbouring country parishes, he pretended to be a cast-away seaman, 3500 miles from home, and picked up a great deal of money, and seven or eight pounds of bacon, which he brought to his quarters, and gave as a recompense for the loan of the trowsers.
Some days after he met with an old female acquaintance, who had a young child with her, at a place called Embercomb, with whom joining company, they came into Dunster, and lay at private lodgings. The next day, being willing to indulge his companion, he borrowed her child, a gown, and one of her petticoats. Thus accoutred, with the child in his arms, he returned to Minehead among the gentlemen he had so lately received contributions from; and pretending to be an unfortunate woman, whose house had been burnt at Chadleigh, and giving a good account of that place and its inhabitants to those who questioned him, coughing very violently, and making the child cry, he got a great deal of money, clothes for the child, and victuals. On his return to Dunster, he gave the mother of the child the clothes, and the greatest part of the money he had obtained in his trip; neither was this method new to him, for he had long before this taught his own daughter, a little infant, to say, “drowned in a boat,” as often as he or any other person asked her what was become of her mother, or mammy. Having made her perfect in this lesson, he set out with her upon his back, and pretended to have been a sailor on board a vessel that had been lately lost on the p. 153coast of Wales, when most of the ship’s crew and passengers were drowned, among whom, he said, was the mother of the tender infant at his back, and that he had saved himself and the infant by swimming. By this story he pocketed a great deal of money every where, especially, as by way of confirmation, when he was telling of it, he would turn and ask the babe, where is your poor mammy, my dear, my jewel? To which the babe would reply, drowned in the boat; which so affected all that heard it, that it not only drew their purse but their tears also.
From Dunster he went through the country to Ilfracombe, where he inquired for a passage to Ireland. He was told there was no vessel going to Ireland, but that he might have a passage for Wales, which he soon resolved upon, and, after waiting upon the collector and some other friends in Ilfracombe, set sail for Swansea. He had no sooner landed there, than he repaired to the Rev. Mr. Griffy of that place, in the character of a cast-away seaman, a native of Devonshire; and, as he gave a particular account of Mr. Griffy’s son, the minister of Bishop’s Nympton, he was made very welcome, and handsomely relieved, and by his recommendations obtained a great deal of money in the town.
From thence he went in the same character to Lord Mansell’s, at Cowbridge, and other places, and returned to Swansea. Thence he set out again, travelling through the country to Tenby, where, hearing of one Captain Lott, he waited upon him with the same story, but with the addition of his name being John Lott, whereby he soon p. 154got half-a-crown and a good welcome. He next set out for Carmarthen, and raised a great deal of money from the Welsh gentry, pretending now to be an unfortunate sailor belonging to Ireland, who had been cast away near Portland Race, coming from Bilboa. He proceeded upon the same story to Aberystwyth and Port Ely, where he chanced to meet with a brother of the mendicant order, to whom he was well known; they inquired of each other’s success, and many other particulars, and agreed to join company for some time. Mr. Carew now got a cere-cloth of pitch, which he laid to his arms, with a raw beef-steak at the top, covered over with white bread and tar, which has the exact appearance of a green wound. They still continued in the same story of being cast away, but, added to it, that he had fallen off the rigging, and wounded his arm in that manner. They travelled together with good success as far as Shadwell, where they parted company.
Our hero made the best of his way to Holyhead, and begging a passage on board the packet to Dublin, after a fine trip landed at King’s End, near that city. His first inquiry here was for an old acquaintance, and in particular for one Mr. Crab, and Lord Annesly, who had been schoolfellows with him at Tiverton. He found my Lord Annesly lived a mile from the town, but did not see him the first day, being gone to Blessington, as the servants told him. Accordingly he set out for that town the next day, where he found my lord at a tavern with several officers; he went in, and told the tavern-keeper he wanted to speak with his lordship; but, as his appearance was none of p. 155the best, the tavern-keeper did not like to deliver this message to my lord, but asked what his business was. Tell him, said he, that I am an old school-fellow of his, and want to see him. My lord, being told this, came out with two gentlemen, and inquired who he was; which our hero told him. Ha! Mr. Carew, said his lordship, is it you, mon? walk in, walk in. What, said one of the captains, is this old Carew? the very same, replied my lord. After he had sat down for some time, and talked over several old affairs with my lord, one of the captains asked him if he could get him a good pointer. Ay, ay, that he can, replied his lordship; for, by my saul, mon, he and I have stolen many a dog, and lain in many a hay tallet, in our youthful days. Then turning to Mr. Carew, he told his fame was spread as much in Ireland as in England. Indeed it is so, replied one of the captains. His lordship then asked him how he found him out there. He replied, he had been directed there by their old school-fellow, Crab. Well, said my lord, you shall go home along with me. He desired to be excused, as he designed to go and see lord St. Leger, who was another of his school-fellows; but my lord swore by his saul he should go home along with him, and visit Lord St. Leger another time; accordingly a good horse was provided for him, and they all set out for Dublin.
The next day my Lord Annesly took him to his own house. During his abode here, which was about a fortnight, our hero received great civilities from the Irish gentry; Lord Annesly introducing him to all the chief company in the city, p. 156as the man they had heard so much talk of. One day Mr. O’Brien, a gentleman of great fortune, being in company, asked Mr. Carew if he had ever been on board the Yarmouth man-of-war; he replied, that he had been in her up the Baltic. The gentleman asked if he remembered a young gentleman about fourteen years of age, very fat, and who had a livery-servant to wait on him. He replied, that he remembered him very well, and that he was blest with as beautiful a face as any youth he ever saw. The gentleman then asked him if he recollected what became of him; which he answered, by saying he died at Gosport a day or two after they landed; and that Mr. Price, of Pool, composed a Latin epitaph for him; at which the gentleman could not refrain letting fall some tears, it being his own brother he was speaking of. He then asked what men-of-war were with them at that time; all which he gave a very good account of, saying, Sir Charles Wager and Rear-Admiral Walton commanded; Sir Charles carrying a red flag at the fore-topmast head of the Torbay, and the latter a blue at the mizen of the Cumberland, both eighty-gun ships. The gentleman replied, he was satisfied, for he had given a very faithful account of every thing; he then made Mr. Carew a present to drink his health when he came to England, as Lord Annesly said he would supply him while he was in Ireland. A great hunting-match being proposed, Lord Annesly told them that Mr. Carew could make one with the best of them at the diversion, upon which he was desired to make one of the party. Accordingly, they set out very early next morning, and had fine p. 157sport, he exerting all his abilities, though he was afraid of riding into some bogs, of which the country is full. When the chase was ended, they all went to Lord Annesly’s to dinner, and the company allowed him to be an excellent sportsman.
Lord Annesly afterwards took him to Newry and many other places, introducing him to much company. At length he desired liberty to go and see his old school-fellow, Lord St. Leger, at Donnerail, which Lord Annesly would not consent to, unless he promised to call upon him again on his return; which agreeing to do, he sent his servant with him as far as Blessington. Parting with the servant here, he travelled to Kilkenny; thence to Cashel, (where is a fine seat belonging to Lord Mark Ker,) Clonmel, and Cahir, where our hero was taken dangerously ill. It would be unpardonable not to mention the hospitality he was treated with here. His good landlady, finding him so ill, sent for the minister of the place to come and pray by him, which he accordingly did, and at going away clapped half-a-crown into his hand, and soon after sent an apothecary to him, who administered what medicines were proper for him, which had so good an effect as to enable him to get upon his legs: however, they would not let him proceed forward for several days, lest he should relapse; and before he set out, the minister of the parish sent his clerk round the place to make a collection for the stranger. At length, being perfectly recovered, he set out for Lord St. Leger’s. When he came there, and was introduced, my lord presently recollected him, and cried, Why sure, and doubly sure, it is Carew! p. 158He then asked how long he had been in Ireland; adding, he hoped he would stay with him for some time. His lordship made him very welcome, and they talked over some of the merry pranks they had played together. Mr. Carew inquired if Sir Matthew Day, another of their old schoolfellows, was alive. His lordship told him he was dead; but that there was a young gentleman would be glad to see any old friend of his father’s. He abode with Lord St. Leger about a fortnight, being entertained in the kindest manner possible; at his departure, my lord made him a handsome present, and gave him a good suit of clothes, with a recommendatory letter to young Mr. Day.
Here he was received with great civility, as well upon account of Lord St. Leger’s letter, as being an old school-fellow of Mr. Day’s father. The conversation happening to turn upon dogs, Mr. Day told him he had heard he was very famous for enticing dogs away, and that Sir William Courtenay’s steward had told him there was not a dog could resist his allurements; however, he believed he had one that would; he then ordered a surly morose dog to be brought out, and offered to lay a wager he could not entice him away, which he readily accepted, and began to whistle to the dog, but found him very surly; upon which he took out a little bottle, and dropping a few drops upon a bit of paper, held it unseen to the dog, and then told Mr. Day the dog would follow him to England. Away then he went, and the dog after him. Mr. Day and his servants all followed, calling Roger, Roger, which was the name of the dog; but Roger turning a deaf ear to all they p. 159could say, not thinking proper to turn about once. Mr. Carew having diverted himself sufficiently, by leading Mr. Day and his servants above half-a-mile, turned back again, with the dog still following him. Having abode here some days, he took his leave, receiving a handsome present from Mr. Day; he then returned back to Lord Annesly, and thence to Kinsale, where he took the first opportunity of a vessel, and landed at Padstow, in Cornwall, after a short and pleasant passage.
From this place he went to Camelford; thence to Great Torrington, where he met with his wife, and then proceeded to Biddeford: and on the next day, being Sunday, he strolled down to one Holmes, who kept a public-house between Biddeford and Appledore, where he passed great part of the day drinking pretty freely; and money being at a low ebb with him, he desired landlord Holmes to lend him a good suit of clothes, which he accordingly did. Being thus gallantly equipped, he went and planted himself at the church-door in Biddeford, and pretending to be the supercargo of a vessel which had been a few days before cast away near the Lizard, he got a very handsome contribution. From thence he travelled to Barnstaple, where he had great success, none suspecting him in his dress, as it was certainly known such a ship had been really cast away near the Lizard a few days before. Returning back, he called upon Squire Ackland, at Tremington, where he got half-a-crown of the lady upon the same story; then, steering to Appledore, he met with landlord Holmes, who had been in no little fear about his clothes; however, he would not disrobe till he got p. 160to Appledore, where also he added to his store, and then returning to Holmes, he restored him his clothes, and gave him some small part of the profit of the excursion.
It was about this time Mr. Carew became acquainted with the Hon. Sir William Wyndham in the following manner.—Being at Watchet, in Somersetshire, near the seat of this gentleman, he was resolved to pay him a visit; putting on, therefore, a jacket and a pair of trowsers, he made the best of his way to Orchard Wyndham, Sir William’s seat; and luckily met with him, Lord Bolingbroke, and several other gentlemen and clergy, with some commanders of vessels, walking in the park. Mr. Carew approached Sir William with a great deal of seeming fearfulness and respect; and with much modesty acquainted him he was a Silverton man, (which parish chiefly belonged to Sir William,) and that he was the son of one of his tenants, named Moore; that he had been at Newfoundland, and in his passage homeward, the vessel was run down by a French ship in a fog, and only he and two more saved; and, being put on board an Irish vessel, he was carried into Ireland, and from thence landed at Watchet. Sir William, hearing this, asked him a great many questions concerning the inhabitants of Silverton, who were most of them his own tenants, and of the principal gentlemen in the neighbourhood, all of whom Mr. Carew was perfectly well acquainted with, and therefore gave satisfactory answers. Sir William at last asked him if he knew Bickley, (which is but a small distance from Silverton,) and if he knew the parson there. Mr. Carew replied p. 161he knew him very well, and indeed so he might, as it was no other than his own father. Sir William then inquired what family he had, and whether he had not a son called Bampfylde, and what was become of him. Your honour, replied he, means the mumper and dog-stealer: I don’t know what has become of him, but it is a wonder he is not hanged by this time. No, I hope not, replied Sir William; I should be very glad, for his family’s sake, to see him at my house. Having satisfactorily answered many other questions, Sir William, generously relieved him with a guinea, and Lord Bolingbroke followed his example; the other gentlemen and clergy contributed according to their different ranks, which they were the more inclined to do, as the captains found he could give a very exact account of all the settlements, harbours, and most noted inhabitants of Newfoundland. Sir William then ordered him to go to his house, and tell the butler to see him well entertained, which he accordingly did; and he set himself down with great content and satisfaction; but our enjoyments are often so suddenly dashed, that it has become a proverb, “that many things happen between the cup and the lip,” and Mr. Carew found it so; for, while he was in the midst of his regale, he saw enter, not the ghost of bloody Banquo to take his seat from him, nor yet the much more tremendous figure of Mr. Tom Jones, in a light-coloured coat covered with streams of blood; no, but the foot-post from Silverton, with letters to Sir William. This proved to be little less than a very sharp sword hanging by a hair over Mr. Carew’s head, p. 162for, as he thought it natural Sir William would ask him some questions about Mr. Moore, and as he did not choose, though he had passed Sir William’s strict examination, to undergo a fresh one, he made great haste to rise from table, and set out without using much ceremony. A few miles distant from hence he met Dr. Poole going from Dulverton to Sir William’s, who, knowing Mr. Carew, stopped his horse to talk to him. Amongst other conversation at Sir William’s, the Dr. happened to mention whom he had met that day (not knowing that he had been lately there); it was soon known by the description he gave of his person and habit, to be no other than the unfortunate Silverton man, to whom Sir William and his friends had been so generous, which occasioned a great deal of mirth. About two months after, Mr. Carew again ventured to pay his honour a second visit, in the habit and character of an unfortunate grazier; he met the worthy baronet and his lady taking the air in a chaise, in a meadow where some haymakers were then at work; he approached them with a great deal of modest simplicity, and began a very moving tale of the misfortunes he had met with in life. In the midst of his oration, Sir William called to the haymakers to secure him; which struck his eloquence dumb, or at least changed it from the pathetic to the tragic style, for he could not conceive what might be the end of this; however, the baronet soon gave him a choice of either a true confession of his name and profession, or a commitment to prison; he made choice of the former, and confessed himself to be Bampfylde Moore Carew, sovereign of the whole p. 163community of mendicants. Sir William, with a great deal of good-nature, treated him with all that respect which is due to royalty; entertained him generously at his house, and made him a very handsome present at his departure, desiring him to call upon him as he came that way; and he was ever a constant friend and benefactor to him.
Soon after this he planned a new design, which he put into execution with great success. Dressing himself up in a chequered shirt, jacket, and trowsers, he went upon Exeter quay, and, with the rough but artless air and behaviour of a sailor, inquired for some of the king’s officers, whom he informed that he belonged to a vessel lately come from France, which had landed a large quantity of run goods, but the captain was a rascal, and had used him ill, and damn his blood if he would not ---. He was about to proceed, but the officers, who with greedy ears swallowed all he said, interrupted him by taking him into the custom-house, and filling him a bumper of cherry brandy, which when he had drunk, they forced another upon him, persuading him to wet the other eye, rightly judging that the old proverb, ‘In wine there is truth,’ might with equal propriety be applied to brandy, and that they should have the fuller discovery, the more the honest sailor’s heart was cheered; but, that no provocation should be wanting to engage him to speak the truth, they asked him if he wanted any money. He with much art answered very indifferently, no; adding, he scorned to make such a discovery out of a mercenary view, but that he was resolved to be revenged of his captain. They then ordered him to the sign p. 164of the Boot, in St. Thomas’s, Exeter, whither they soon followed him, having first sent to Mr. Eastwood, an exciseman, to ask what he would have for dinner, and what liquor he would have to drink. A fire was lighted up stairs in a private room, a couple of ducks roasted, and full glasses of wine and punch went cheerfully round; they then thrust four guineas into his hand, which at first he seemed unwilling to accept of, which made them the more pressing. He now began to open his mind with great freedom, gave a particular account of the vessel, where they had taken in their cargo at France, and what it consisted of; the day they sailed, and the time they were on their passage; and at last concluded with acquainting them they had landed and concealed part of their valuable cargo in the out-houses of Squire Mallock, of Cockington, and the remainder in those of Squire Cary, of Tor-abbey, both which houses, upon account of their situation on the sea-side, were very noted for such concealments. The officers, having now got on the scent, were like sagacious hounds for pursuing it forthwith, and also thought proper the sailor should accompany them; and, to prevent all suspicion, resolved he should now change his habit; they therefore dressed him in a ruffled shirt, a fine suit of broad cloth belonging to the collector, and put a gold-laced hat on his head; then, mounting him on a fine black mare, away they rode together, being in all seven or eight of them; they that night reached Newton-Bushel, and slept at the Bull; nothing was wanting to make the night jovial; the greatest delicacies the town afforded were served up at their table, the best liquors p. 165were broached for them, and music, with its enlivening charms, crowned the banquet; the officers’ hearts were quite open and cheerful, as they already enjoyed, in imagination, all the booty they were to seize on the morrow. Thinking they could not do enough for the honest sailor, they inquired if he knew any thing of accounts; promising, if he did, to get him a place in the customs. In the morning, after a good hearty breakfast, they set forward for Tor-abbey; and, being arrived in Tor-town, they demanded the constables’ assistance, who was with the utmost reluctance prevailed on to accompany them in making this search; Squire Gary being a gentleman so universally beloved by the whole parish, (to which he always behaved as a father,) that every one was very backward in doing any thing to give him the least uneasiness. Did gentlemen of large estates in the country but once taste the exalted pleasure of making the whole neighbourhood happy, and consider how much honest industry they might support, how much misery they might alleviate, and how many daily blessings they might have poured forth upon their heads from hearts overflowing with love, respect and gratitude, almost to adoration, we should not so often see them leave their noble country mansions to repair to noise and folly; nor exchange the heart-enlivening pleasure of making numbers happy, for the beguiling smiles and unmeaning professions of a prime minister.
Being come to the house, they all dismounted, and the collector desired the sailor to hold his horse, but he replied he would rather go round the garden, and meet them on the other side of the p. 166house, to prevent any thing from being conveyed away, and that it would be proper he should be present to show the particular place where every thing was deposited. This appeared quite right to the collector; he therefore contented himself with fastening his horse to the garden rails, and proceeded with the rest of the officers, in great form, to search the dog-kennel, coal-house, dove-house, stables, and all other suspicious places, expecting every minute to see the informing sailor, who by this time had nearly got back to Newton-Bushel, having turned his horse’s head that way as soon as he was out of sight of the collector. He stopped at the Bull, where they had been the preceding night, and drank a bottle of wine; then, ordering a handsome dinner to be got ready for his company, whom he said he had left behind, because his business called him with urgent haste to Exeter, he clapped his spurs to his horse, and did not stop till he reached that city, where he put up at the Oxford inn, then kept by Mr. Buckstone, to whom both himself and friends were well known; he acquainted Mr. Buckstone that he was now reformed, and lived at home with his friends, and spent the night very jovially, calling for the best of every thing. In the morning he desired Mr. Buckstone to do him the favour of lending him a couple of guineas, till he could receive some of a merchant in the city upon whom he had a bill, for the merchant was gone out of town. As Mr. Buckstone had a mare in his custody worth ten or twelve pounds, he made no scruple of doing it; and soon after Mr. Carew thought proper to change his quarters, without bidding the landlord good-bye. p. 167Leaving the mare to discharge the reckoning and the loan he had borrowed, he repaired immediately to a house of usual resort for his community, where he pulls off the fine clothes the collector had lent him, and rigged himself again in a jacket and trowsers; then setting out for Topsham, about three miles from the city of Exeter, he there executed the same stratagem upon Mr. Carter and the other officers there; informing them also of some great concealments at Sir Coppleston Bampfylde’s house, at Poltimore, for which they rewarded him with a good treat and a couple of guineas.
The Exeter officers (whom, as we have before said, he left without the least ceremony at Squire Gary’s) having searched all the out-houses, and even in the dwelling-house, very narrowly, without finding any prohibited goods, began to suspect the sailor had outwitted them; therefore they returned in a great hurry to Newton-Bushel, all their mirth being turned into vexation, and their great expectations vanished into smoke. Soon after they had dismounted from their horses, the landlord brought in the dinner, which he said their companion had ordered to be got ready for them; but though it was a very elegant one, yet they found abundance of faults with every thing; however, as it was too late to reach Exeter that night, they were obliged to take up their quarters there; but, instead of the jollity and good humour that reigned among them the night before, there now succeeded a sullen silence, interrupted now and then by some exclamations of revenge, and expressions of dislike of every thing that was brought them: when they came into Exeter the next day, they had intelligence p. 168brought them of the mare, which was safe enough at the Oxford inn; but they were obliged to disburse the money Mr. Carew had made her surety for.
From Topsham Mr. Carew proceeded to Exmouth, where he also succeeded, and from thence to Squire Stucky’s, a justice of peace at Brandscombe, about four miles from Sidmouth; and, being introduced, acquainted his worship with several discoveries he could make; the justice thereupon immediately dispatched a messenger for Mr. Duke, an officer in Sidmouth; in the mean time he entertained him very handsomely, and pressed him to accept of two guineas, as a small token of kindness, often shaking him by the hand, and saying, he thought himself very much obliged to him for making this discovery: and that, as a reward for his loyalty to the king, he would engage to get him a place, having many friends at London. About two o’clock the next morning, Mr. Duke, the sailor, and servant of the squire’s, set forward towards Honiton, it being at Squire Blagdon’s, near the town, where they were to find the hidden treasure. Mr. Carew was mounted on a good horse of Justice Stucky’s, and, while the officer and servant were very busy in searching the out-houses and stables, Mr. Carew gave them the slip, and posted away to Honiton, and took some refreshment at the Three Lions; then leaving the justice’s horse to answer for it, hasted away to Lime, in Dorsetshire; where he applied to Mr. Jordan, the collector of the place, whom he sent upon the same errand some miles off, to Colonel Brown’s, at Frampton; but the collector, not judging it proper p. 169for him to accompany him, for fear of creating suspicion, left him at his own house till his return, giving his servant orders to let him want for nothing; at the same time making him a handsome present, as an earnest of a greater reward when he returned. Mr. Carew enjoyed himself very contentedly at the collector’s house for several hours, both eating and drinking of the best, as he knew Frampton was at too great a distance for him to return presently; but he prudently weighed his anchor when he thought the collector might be on his return, and steered his course towards Weymouth, where he made his application to the collector, and after being handsomely treated, and a present given to him, sent the officers to Squire Groves’s, near White-street, and Squire Barber’s, on the Chase, both in Wiltshire. And as soon as they were gone, he set out for Poole; and sent the collector and officers of that place to Sir Edward Boobey’s, who lived in the road between Salisbury and Hendon; they gave him two guineas in hand, and a promise of more upon their return with the booty; in the mean time they recommended him to an inn, and gave orders that he should have any thing the house afforded, and they would make satisfaction for it; but this adventure had like not to have ended so well for him as the former; for, being laid down upon a bed to nap, having drunk too freely, he heard some people drinking and talking in the next room of the great confusion there was in all the sea-ports in the west of England, occasioned by a trick put on the king’s officers by one Bampfylde Carew, and that this news was brought p. 170to Poole by a Devonshire gentleman, who accidently came that way. Mr. Carew hearing this, rightly judged Poole was no proper place to make a longer stay in; he therefore instantly arose, and, by the help of a back door, got into a garden, and with much difficulty climbed over the wall belonging thereto, and made the best of his way to Christchurch, in Hampshire; here he assumed the character of a shipwrecked seaman, and raised considerable contributions. Coming to Ringwood, he inquired of the health of Sir Thomas Hobbes, a gentleman in that neighbourhood, who was a person of great hospitality; he was told that some of the mendicant order, having abused his benevolence, in taking away a pair of boots, after he had received a handsome present from him, it had so far prejudiced Sir Thomas, that he did not exercise the same hospitality as formerly. This greatly surprised and concerned Mr. Carew, that any of his subjects should be guilty of so ungrateful an action: he was resolved therefore to inquire strictly into it, that, if he could find out the offender, he might inflict a deserved punishment upon him; and therefore resolved to pay a visit to Sir Thomas the next morning, hoping he should get some light into the affair. When he came to the house, it was pretty early in the day, and Sir Thomas had not come out of his chamber; however, he sent up his pass, as a shipwrecked seaman, by one of the servants, who presently returned with half-a-crown. As he had been always wont to receive a large present from Sir Thomas, whenever he had applied to him, he thought there was some unfair practice at the bottom; he therefore p. 171asked the footman for a copper of ale to drink the family’s health, hoping Sir Thomas might come down by that time; the servant pretended to be in so great a hurry, that he could not attend to draw any, but he was of too humane a nature to permit the poor sailor to suffer by his hurry, so gave him a shilling out of his own pocket to drink at the next public-house. This extraordinary generosity of the footman increased Mr. Carew’s suspicion; he therefore kept loitering about the door, and often looking up at the window, in hopes of seeing Sir Thomas, which accordingly happened, for at length he flung up the sash, and accosted him in a free familiar manner, called him Brother Tar, and told him he was very sorry for his misfortunes, and that he had sent him a piece of money to assist him in his journey towards Bristol. Heaven bless your honour, replied he, for the half-crown your honour sent me; upon which Sir Thomas ran down in his morning gown, and with great passion seized the footman by the throat, and asked him what he had given the sailor. The fellow was struck dumb with this, and indeed there was no need for his tongue on the present occasion, as his looks, and the trembling of his limbs, sufficiently declared his guilt; however he at last owned it with his tongue; and excused himself by saying, he knew there was an ill use made of the large bounties his honour gave. Sir Thomas, enraged at the insolence of his servant, bestowed upon him the discipline of the horse-whip, for his great care and integrity in not seeing his bounty abused; adding, he now saw by whose villany he had lost his boots. He then made the footman return the p. 172whole guinea to the sailor, and discharged him from any further service in his family; upon which Mr. Carew took his leave with great thankfulness, and went his way, highly pleased with his good success in this adventure.—Here we cannot forbear wishing that there was no higher character in life than Sir Thomas’s footman, to whose hands gold is apt to cling in passing through them; that there was no steward who kept back part of his master’s rent, because he thinks he has more than he knows what to do with; no managers of charities, who retain part of the donors’ benefactions in their own hands, because it is too much for the poor; nor officers of the public, who think they may squander the public treasure without account, because what is everybody’s is nobody’s.
Mr. Carew having laid aside his sailor’s habit, put on a long loose vest, placed a turban on his head, dignified his chin with a venerable long beard, and was now no other than a poor unfortunate Grecian, whose misfortunes had overtaken him in a strange country. He could not utter his sorrowful tale, being unacquainted with the language of the country; but his mute silence, his dejected countenance, a sudden tear that now and then flowed down his cheek, accompanied with a noble air of distress, all pleaded for him in more persuasive eloquence than perhaps the softest language could have done, and raised him considerable gains; and indeed benevolence can never be better exerted than towards unfortunate strangers, for no distress can be so forlorn as that of a man in necessity in a foreign country; he has no friends to apply to, no laws to shelter him under, no means to provide p. 173for his subsistence, and therefore can have no resource but in those benevolent minds who look upon the whole world as their own brethren.
We have already mentioned Mr. Carew’s being on board the Yarmouth man-of-war up the Baltic; it will not, therefore, be improper here to relate the occasion of that voyage, which was as follows:—He and his friend, Coleman, being at Plymouth, and appearing to be able-bodied men, some officers seeing them there, thought them extremely fit to serve his majesty, therefore obliged them to go on board the Dunkirk man-of-war: but they not liking this, Coleman pricked himself upon the wrists, between his fingers, and other joints, and inflamed it so with gunpowder, that every one thought it to be the itch; he was therefore carried ashore, and put into the hospital, from whence he soon made his escape. Mr. Carew tried the stragem, but too late; for the Lively and Success men-of-war now arriving from Ireland with impressed men, they were all of them carried immediately (together with the impressed men lying at Plymouth) to the grand fleet, then lying at Spithead; they were first put on board the Bredau, Admiral Hosier, to choose whom he liked of them: and their names being called over, the Irishmen were all refused; which Mr. Carew seeing declared himself, in a true Irish brogue, to be a poor Irish weaver, and disabled in one arm, whereupon he was also refused: the Irish, among whom he was now ranked, were carried from ship to ship, and none would accept of them, which made them all expect to be discharged; but they were disappointed in their hopes, for they were p. 174put on board the Yarmouth, Captain O’Brien, being one of the squadron destined for the Baltic. Mr. Carew finding Captain O’Brien refused no Irishmen, when he came to be examined changed his note, and declared himself to be an Englishman, but crippled in one arm: however, the captain accepted of him, and putting a sword in his hand, made him stand sentry at the bitts, which easy post he liked very well; and during all the time he was on board, every one supposed him really disabled in his arm.
The fleet, sailing from Spithead with a fair wind, anchored safely at Copenhagen, and then the king of Denmark came on board Sir Charles Wager: the moment he set his foot on board, both the flag-ships were covered with an infinite number of colours of every hue, which, waving in the wind, made a most gallant sight: upon his departure, the colours were all taken down in an instant, and every ship fired eighteen or twenty guns. Sailing from Copenhagen, they anchored next in Elson Cape, in Sweden; from hence they sailed to Revel, in a line of battle, in form of a rainbow, and anchored there: the sick men were carried ashore to Aragan island, which Mr. Carew observing, and burning with love to revisit his native country, counterfeited sickness, and was accordingly carried ashore to this island, which lies near Revel, belonging to the Muscovites, from whence boats came every day to fetch wood. He prevailed upon an Englishman, who was a boatswain to one of the Czarina’s men-of-war, to give him a passage in his boat from that island to Revel town; when he came there, the boatswain used great endeavours p. 175to persuade him to enter her majesty’s service, but it was all in vain, being resolved to return to his beloved country; the boatswain, therefore, having entertained him a day and a night at his house, gave him, at his departure, a piece of money, and engaged several Englishmen of his acquaintance to do the same; he likewise furnished him with a bag of provisions, a bottle of excellent brandy, a tinder-box, and a few lines wrote in that country language, which he was to show to those he met, to inform him of the road he was to go; and then conducted him out of the town. That night he took up his lodgings in the woods, and, by the help of his tinder-box, made a large fire all round him, to secure himself from any visits from the wild beasts, then broiled a piece of flesh, drank a dram, and rested very quietly till morning, it being the middle of summer.
The whole country here is wild, full of large woods and uninhabited deserts, the towns and villages lying very thin. In the morning, finding his way out of the woods, he espied a lonely hut, to which he made up, and making signs of hunger and thirst, they gave him some rusk bread and cabereta, or goat’s flesh, to eat, and some goat’s milk to drink, which is the usual fare amongst those people, who are most of them Lutherans by religion, and lead very sober lives; of some of them he got small bits of money, which they call campekes, and are of silver, something larger than a barley-corn, being of a penny value; he likewise frequently got drams of excellent brandy amongst them, and his shoes being worn-out by travelling, p. 176they gave him a pair of good wooden ones, which sat very awkwardly on his English feet.
After six or seven days’ travel through this wild country he came to Riga, a large town and famous sea-port: here he met with many English merchants and commanders of vessels, who were very kind to him; he tarried two days in Riga, to rest and refresh himself: during which the English merchants and commanders provided lodgings and other accommodations for him, collecting upwards of fifty shillings for him. Having expressed his utmost gratitude towards his good benefactors, he again pursued his journey, subsisting himself sometimes on the charity of the inhabitants of the country, and at other times milking the cows upon the mountains or in the woods. The next place of note he arrived at was the city of Dantzic, in the kingdom of Poland: here he found a great number of English merchants who traded to Exeter, and Bristol, and had many correspondents living in those places, several of whom Mr. Carew being acquainted with, he gave a particular account of.
Having been entertained here very hospitably for several days, he set out again, having first received some handsome presents from the English merchants. From Dantzic he got a passage on board an English brigantine bound for Copenhagen, but through stress of weather was obliged to put into Elson Cape, where he went on shore, and travelled by land to Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, but in his road thither he lost his way in this wild and desert country, and for the space of three days and nights saw neither house, hut, nor human p. 177creature, the weather being very thick and foggy. Nothing could be more melancholy and dreadful than these three days’ travel; his provisions were exhausted, and every step he took he was uncertain whether it might lead him farther into the woods, as he could make no observation how the country lay, the fog intercepting the light of every thing. Sometimes fancy would paint to him a hut through the fog at a little distance, to which he would direct his steps with eager haste, but when he came nearer, found it nothing but an illusion of sight, which almost drove him to despair. The fourth day he was exceedingly hungry, when, to his great joy, he espied two she-goats fastened together with ropes of straw: he ran to them with great eagerness, and drunk very heartily of their milk; after this he began to consider that there must be some hut at least hard by, as the goats could not have strayed in that manner any great distance; he therefore resolved to stay upon the spot for some time; and soon after the fog clearing up, he espied a hut just before him, to which he directly repaired, and there got a belly-full of their homely fare, and directions to find his way to Stockholm.
The religion of this country being chiefly Lutheran, he passed for the son of a presbyterian parson, and his name Slowly, pretending to have been cast away in a vessel bound for Revel. The Lutherans at Stockholm were exceedingly kind to him and raised a handsome contribution for him. He likewise chanced there to meet with a relation of Dr. Bredaw, a Swiss gentleman, that resided at p. 178Dartmouth, in Devonshire, who asked several questions about him; and as Mr. Carew was well acquainted with him, he gave very satisfactory answers, upon which account that gentleman gave him a guinea, a great fur cap, a coat, and a fine dog, with a letter to carry to his relation at Dartmouth.
From Stockholm he went to Charles-town, and after a short stay there continued his journey to Copenhagen, the metropolis of Denmark; here he met with one Captain Thomas Giles, of Minehead in Somersetshire, who knew him, and was surprised to see him in that part of the world, and not only liberally relieved him himself, but recommended him to several English commanders there, and also to several inhabitants of the city. From Copenhagen he went to Elsinburgh, thence to Elsinore, where he got a passage for England, and once more arrived in his native country. Landing at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, he visited his wife’s relations, and then set forward for Devonshire, travelling all the way in the character of a shipwrecked seaman. Meeting at Exeter with his beloved wife, and likewise with his friend Coleman and his wife, they travelled together for some time, during which Coleman’s wife was delivered of a daughter; but as they found so helpless an infant a great hindrance to their travelling, Mr. Carew contrived a stratagem to get rid of it, and at the same time advanced the fortune of the child.
There was in the town, where they then were, a gay bachelor, who lived with his mother and sisters, and was a great admirer of that order of female travellers called Cousin Betties. Coleman’s p. 179wife had been with him some months before in that character, was very well entertained, and, amongst other favours, received a present of a silk handkerchief. They therefore dressed up the babe very neatly, wrapped it up exceeding warm, and put it in a hand-basket, taking care to put in the handkerchief Coleman’s wife had received from this gay bachelor; then getting a large boar cat, in the dusk of the evening they tied it to the knocker of the door, setting down before it the basket with the helpless infant. The cat, not liking the treatment, made a hideous squalling, and with his struggling, rap, rap, rap, went the knocker of the door; out ran the gentleman, with his mother, sisters, and servants, and the neighbourhood gathered about the door to see what this noise could mean. Mr. Carew and Coleman mingled among them to learn what would be the event of their stratagem. The cat, by long struggling, got free of the knocker, and ran away, only leaving part of the tail behind. The basket alone now engaged the attention of every one, and being delivered to the gentleman to open, the feeble cries of an infant soon reached their ears. The mother and sisters, alarmed at this unexpected salutation, snatched the basket from him, and upon the child’s breast found a note in these words:
“Remember, sir, where you last met me, you have not been so kind as you often promised and swore you would: however, it justly belongs to you. I have made bold to send you the fruits of our meeting, and this handkerchief which you made me as a token. Be kind to our infant daughter; p. 180and the unfortunate mother on her part, will forgive you.
The horrid squalling of the cat did not grate so disagreeably upon the gentleman’s ears, as the reading of these words; so that his hat and wig were flung off, and he ran about stamping and swearing that the child was none of his, neither did he know any thing of the mother. On the other hand, his mother and sisters flew into a violent rage, assailing his ears on every side with reproaches; so that he would at that time have thought deafness preferable to any one of the senses. “Dost thou deny the child to be thine?” cried the mother: “has it not thy very eyes, nose, and mouth? and is this not thy very handkerchief? this thou canst not deny, for I can safely swear it was thine.” The poor gentleman, thus beset on all sides, was obliged to quit the field; the child was taken into the house, and brought up and educated there, and is at this day a very accomplished fine lady.
Some time after this adventure, Mr. Carew took passage at Folkstone, in Kent, for Boulogne in France, where he arrived safe, and proceeded to Paris and other cities in that kingdom. His habit was now tolerably good, his countenance grave, his behaviour sober and decent, pretending to be a Roman-catholic, who left England, his native country, out of an ardent zeal of spending his days in the bosom of the catholic church. This story readily gained belief; his zeal was universally applauded, and handsome contributions made for him; but at the same time he was so zealous a p. 181Roman-catholic, with a little change of habit, he used to address those English he heard of in any place as a protestant shipwrecked seaman. He had the good fortune, in this character, to meet an English physician at Paris, to whom he told his deplorable tale, who was so much affected by it, that he not only relieved him very handsomely, but, what was more, recommended him to that noble pattern of unexhausted benevolence, Mrs. Horner, who was on her travels, from whom he received ten guineas, and from some other company with her, five more.
Here, reader, if thou hast a good heart, we cannot entertain thee better, than by drawing a true though faint picture of this generous lady; for, were benevolence and generosity real beings, we are persuaded they would act just like her; with such an unsparing hand would they bestow their bounties, and with such magnificence reward desert; with such godlike compassion cheer the afflicted, and just so make happy all around them: but thou canst form no adequate idea, unless thou hast been in the neighbourhood of that noble mansion, the seat of Mrs. Horner, at Mulberry, Dorsetshire, where benevolence has fixed her seat. Permit me, therefore, to transport thee thither, to bless thy sight with the delightful scene. See, already, the parish church, rebuilt at her expense, strikes the eye; it is she that has erected it to the honour of her God. Thou art surprised, I see, to behold an eminent physician, who is allowed a constant salary by her to visit the poor sick in her neighbourhood, coming out of his chariot to enter the wretched huts of poverty; but know, she has p. 182already paid his fees: see here another compounding the choicest drugs and medicines for a whole neighbourhood; it is her bounty that has supplied them. Cast your eye the other way, and behold that company of aged and decrepid poor; they are going to receive their daily bread at her table. But let us enter the poor cottage; see, here are the holy Scriptures and other books of pious instruction; and, hark! the lisping child is reading distinctly in one of them; her munificence has bestowed these useful gifts, and instilled instruction into that tender mind. Behold, with how dejected a look and grief-swollen heart, with what a load of care, yon person enters the mansion: but see, he returns—how changed his aspect! joy sparkles in his eye, and thankfulness swells his exulting heart; content sits cheerful upon his brow, and he no longer bends under his care: what wonderful magic has wrought this sudden change?—the opening only of her beneficent hand has done it.
What we are now going to relate will raise an honest indignation in the breast of every true lover of liberty; for all such know that the beauteous flower of liberty sickens to the very root (like the sensitive plant) at the lightest touch of the iron hand of power upon any one of its most distant branches.
Mr. Carew being in the city of Exeter with his wife, and, having visited his old friends there, he walked to Topsham, about three miles distant, leaving his wife in Exeter. Alas! little did he think this walk would end in a long and cruel separation from his friends and country; little did he imagine, that, in the land of freedom and justice, p. 183he should be seized upon by the cruel grasp of lawless power: though poor, he thought himself under the protection of the laws, and, as such, liable to no punishment till they inflicted it. How far he thought right in this, let the sequel tell. Going down to Topsham, and walking upon the quay there, enjoying the beauties of a fine evening, meditating no harm, and suspecting no danger, he was accosted by merchant D---y, accompanied with several captains of vessels, in some such words as these: Ha! Mr. Carew, you are come in a right time! As you came home for your own pleasure you shall go over for mine. They then laid hands on him, who found it in vain to resist, as he was overpowered by numbers; he therefore desired to be carried before some magistrate, but this was not hearkened to, for they forced him on board a boat, without the presence or authority of any officer of justice, not so much as suffering him to take leave of his wife, or acquaint her with his misfortune, though he begged the favour almost with tears. The boat carried him on board the Phillory, Captain Simmonds, bound for America with convicts, which then lay at Powderham-castle waiting for a fair wind. Here, had my pen gall enough, I would put a blot of eternal infamy on that citizen of liberty, who usurped so much power over a fellow-citizen, and those who suffered a brother of liberty, however undeserving, to be dragged to slavery by the lawless hand of power, without the mandate of sovereign justice. Foolish wretch! dost thou not know that thou oughtest to be more careful of keeping all usurping power within its bounds, than thou wouldst the raging p. 184sea ready to overflow and overwhelm them all; for thou who hast consented to see power oppress a fellow-heir of glorious liberty, how canst thou complain, if its all-grasping iron hand should seize upon thyself, or whatever thou holdest most dear? then wouldst thou, too late, bewail that thou hadst ever suffered power wantonly to set foot on the neck of liberty.
But to return: Mr. Carew was no sooner put on board, than he was strictly searched, and then taken between decks, where he was ironed down with the convicts. There was at the same time a violent fever raging among them, and Mr. Carew, by being chained with them night and day, was soon infected, and taken very ill; however, he had not the liberty of sending to his wife, nor any of his friends, though they lay three weeks in the roads for a fair wind. In the mean time, his wife, not hearing any thing from him, and uncertain what was become of him, or whether he was alive or dead, abandoned herself to an excess of grief, for he had always been a kind and affectionate husband to her; she therefore sought him up and down, at all the houses of his usual resort, but in vain, for no news could she gain of her beloved husband.
The wind coming fair, they hoisted sail, and soon bid adieu to the English coasts. We need not describe what passed in Mr. Carew’s breast at this time; anger and grief prevailed by turns, sometimes resentment, for being thus treated, fired his bosom, and he vowed revenge: at other times the thoughts of his being thus unexpectedly separated from his country and friends, and doomed p. 185to an ignominious slavery, filled him with sad and melancholy reflections; however, he had the pleasure, before it was long, of knowing he was not entirely deserted; for Captain Simmonds, the commander of the Phillory, a humane compassionate man, came down to him between decks, soon after they were under sail, and bid him be of good cheer, for he should want for nothing; and though he had strict orders from merchant D---y never to let him return, yet he would be a friend to him, and provide for him in the best manner he could. Mr. Carew returned thanks to his generous and unexpected benefactor in as handsome a manner as he was able.
Soon after this, he had liberty allowed him of coming upon deck, where the captain entered into conversation with him, and jocosely asked if he thought he could be at home before him. He generously replied he thought he could, at least he would endeavour to be so; which the captain took all in good part.
Thus did Mr. Carew spend his time, in as agreeable a manner as could be expected under his present circumstances: but, alas! all our happiness is too fleeting, and we scarcely taste the pleasure before it is ravished from us: and thus it happened to our hero; for they had scarcely been under sail five weeks before the good Captain Simmonds was taken ill, which increased every day with too many fatal symptoms; till at last death, who regards alike the good and virtuous, and the bad and vicious, struck the fatal blow: but the approaches of the grisly tyrant were not so dreadful to this man, as the distress it would occasion p. 186to his wife and family, whom he cried out for during his whole illness. Mr. Carew bewailed the loss of this generous benefactor with more than outward sorrow. Every thing in the vessel was now in confusion by the death of the captain; at length the mate, one Harrison of Newcastle, took charge of the vessel and the captain’s effects; but had not enjoyed his new honours before he was taken dangerously ill, so that the vessel was obliged to be left to the care of the common sailors, and was several times in great danger of being lost. At last, after sixteen weeks passage, in the grey of the morning, they made Cape Charles, and then bore away to Cape Henry: at Hampton they took in a pilot. The vessel having several times run upon the sand, and was not got off again without great difficulty; the pilot soon after brought them to Kent-island, where they fired a gun, and Harrison, who was now recovered, went on shore, near Annapolis, and made a bargain with one Mr. Delany of that place, for Mr. Carew, as an expert gardener. He was then sent on shore, and Mr. Delany asked him if he understood gardening. Being willing to get out of Harrison’s hands, he replied in the affirmative; but Mr. Delany asking him if he could mow, he replied in the negative. Then you are no gardener, replied Mr. Delany, and so refused to buy him. Then one Hilldrop, who had been transported about three years before from Exeter, for horse stealing, and had married a currier’s widow in Annapolis, had a mind to purchase him, but they could not agree about the price, whereupon he was put on board again, and they sailed from Miles-river.
p. 187Here they fired a gun, and the captain went on shore; in the mean time the men prisoners were ordered to be close shaved, and the women to have clean caps on: this was scarcely done, before an overseer belonging to Mr. Bennet, in Way-river, and several planters, came up to buy. The prisoners were all ordered upon deck, and Mr. Carew among them: some of the planters knew him again, and cried out, “Is not this the man Captain Froade brought over, and put a pot-hook upon?” Yes, replies Mr. Harrison, the very same: at which they were much surprised, having an account he had been either killed by the wild beasts or drowned in some river. Ay, ay, replied Harrison with a great oath, I’ll take care he shall not be at home before me. By this time several of the prisoners were sold, the bowl went merrily round, and many of the planters gave Mr. Carew a glass, but none of them chose to buy him.
During this, Mr. Carew, observing a great many canoes and small boats lying along-side the vessel, thought it not impossible to make himself master of one them, and by that means reach the shore, where he supposed he might conceal himself till he found an opportunity of getting off; though this was a very hazardous attempt, and, if unsuccessful, would expose him to a great deal of hard usage, and probably put it out of his power of ever regaining his liberty, yet he was resolved to venture. He now recollected the common maxim, that ‘fortune favours the bold,’ and therefore took an opportunity, just as it grew dark, of slipping nimbly down the ship’s side into one of the canoes, which he paddled with as much p. 188silence and expedition as possible towards the shore: but he had not gone far before the noise he made gave the alarm, that one of the prisoners had escaped. Harrison immediately called out to inquire which of them, and where Carew was; and, being told that he was gone off, swore that he would much rather have lost half of the prisoners than him.
All hands were then called upon to pursue; the captain and planters left their bowl; the river was soon covered with canoes, and every thing was in confusion. Mr. Carew was within hearing of this, but, by plying his canoe well, had the good fortune to get on shore before any of them; he immediately took himself to the woods as soon as he landed, and climbed up into a great tree, where he had not been many minutes before he heard the captain, sailors, and planters, all in pursuit of him; the captain fretted and stormed, the sailors d---d their blood, and the planters endeavoured to pacify every thing, by telling the captain not to fear his getting off. He heard all this, though not unmoved, yet without taking notice of it: at last, finding their search fruitless, the captain, sailors, and planters returned; the planters still assuring the captain they would have him in the morning.
As soon as they were gone he began to reflect upon his present situation, which, indeed, was melancholy enough, for he had no provisions, was beset on every side, quite incapable of judging what to undertake, or what course to steer: however, he at last resolved to steer farther into the woods, which he accordingly did, and got up into another tree: here he sat all the succeeding day, p. 189without a morsel of food; but was diverted with a great multitude of squirrels he saw skipping from tree to tree; and had he had a gun, he could have shot hundreds of pigeons, there was so great a plenty of them. The next day, towards night, hunger became too powerful, and he was almost spent for want of food; in this necessity he knew not what to do; at last, happening to spy a planter’s house at a distance, he was resolved to venture down in the night, thinking he might chance to find food of some sort or other, in or about the house: agreeable to this resolution, he came down the tree in the middle of the night, and, going into the planter’s yard, to his great joy he found there a parcel of milk cows penned in, which he soon milked in the crown of his hat, making a most delicious feast, and then retired to the woods again, climbing up into a tree, where he passed the day much more easy than he had the preceding one.
Having found out this method of subsisting, he proceeded forwards in the same manner, concealing himself in a tree in the day-time, and travelling all the night, milking the cows as often as he had an opportunity; and steering his course as near as he could guess towards Duck’s Creek.
On the fifth night he heard the voices of several people near him in the woods, upon which he stepped on one side, and concealed himself behind a tree, till they had passed by. When he came near enough to distinguish their words, he heard them say, we will make the best of our way to Duck’s Creek, and there we shall certainly have him. He now judged that these were some men in pursuit p. 190of him, therefore thought himself very happy in having so narrowly escaped them.
On the eighth day, being upon a tree, he discovered a lone house, near the skirts of the woods, and saw all the family (as he supposed) going out to hoe tobacco, and the dog following them; this was a joyful sight to him, for he had not, the two preceding nights, met with any cows, and consequently had been without food. As soon, therefore, as the family were out of sight, he came down from the tree, and ventured in the house, where he found not only enough to satisfy his hunger, but what might be deemed luxury in his present condition: for there was a jolly cake, powell, a sort of Indian corn bread, and good omani, which is kidney-beans ground with Indian corn, sifted, then put into a pot to boil, and eat with molasses. Seeing so many dainties, he did not hesitate long, but, hunger pressing, sat down and ate the omani with as much composure as if he had been invited thereto by the owner of it: and knowing that hunger and necessity are bound by no laws of honour, he took the liberty of borrowing the jolly cake, powell, and a leg of fine pork, then hastened back to the tree with his booty. What the people thought when they returned at night with good appetites, and found their dainty omani, their jolly cake, and their pork, all vanished, we know not, but suppose they were not a little surprised.
Being thus stocked with provisions, he made the best of his way to Ogle-town that night, and so to Old-town. In the dawn of the morning of the eleventh day, he came in sight of Duck’s p. 191Creek; but being afraid he might fall into the hands of his pursuers, he struck a great way into the woods towards Tuck Hoe; where staying all the day in a tree, he came again in the middle of the night to Duck’s Creek. As soon as he came here, he ran to the water side to seek for a canoe, but found them all chained; he immediately set himself about breaking the chain, but found it too strong, and all endeavours to break it were in vain. Never was man more thunder-struck than he was now, just at the time when he expected to be out of danger, to meet with so unforeseen and insurmountable an obstacle. He knew there was no way of escaping, but by passing the river Delaware, and could not think of a method of effecting it. Several hours did he pass in this agitation of mind: sometimes he had a mind to try his strength in swimming, but the river being so wide, he thought he could not reach the opposite shore; at last, reflecting what one of his ancestors had done in swimming a horse over Teignmouth bar, and seeing some horses grazing thereabout, he resolved to attempt passing the Delaware in that manner; for, let the worst happen, he thought death preferable to slavery. Being thus resolved, he soon caught one of the horses, and, making a sort of bridle with his handkerchief, brought the horse to the water side; he walked for some time on the banks, looking for a proper place to enter the horse: at last, espying a little stream, which ran into the great river Deleware, he stripped himself, and, tying his frock and trowsers about his shoulders, mounted the horse, and putting him forward a little, the horse soon lost his footing, and the water came p. 192up to Mr. Carew’s middle, who kept his legs as near as possible to the horse, and in this manner launched into the great river Delaware.
The horse snorted and neighed to his companions, but made for the opposite shore with all the strength he could. Mr. Carew did not imagine the horse would be able to reach it, but proposed to save himself by swimming when the horse failed, for the river was three miles over: however the horse reached the shore, but finding no place to land, it being a sandy mud, he was obliged to swim him along the shore, till he came to a little creek, which the horse swimming into, soon got sure footing, to the great joy of Mr. Carew, who, dismounting, kissed the horse, telling him he must now turn quaker as well as himself, and so let him go into the woods.
His clothes were not very wet; however, he staid on the banks some time to dry them with the morning sun, then went up into the country. The first house he came to was a miller’s, whose wife came out and asked him from whence he came? He told her he had been a prisoner some time in the Havannah, from whence he had been released by an exchange of prisoners, and was now going home.
The good woman pitied him much, and told him he looked very melancholy; but her husband coming in, said, he believed he was an Irishman. This he denied, averring he was of the West of England; so they gave him a piece of that country money, and a mug of rum, which he drinking greedily, being very thirsty, it threw him into such a violent fever, that he was obliged to stop at a p. 193neighbouring house, where he lay sick for three or four days. From hence he went to Newcastle, where he raised contributions from several gentlemen, as he had done before, but not under the former name, from hence to Castle, Brandywine Ferry, Chester, and Derby, where he got relief from the same miller that Mr. Whitfield was with when he was there before, and lodged at the same house, but took care to disguise himself so as not to be known: he there got a pass from the justice as a sick man bound to Boston. From hence he proceeded to Brunswick, where he got relief from Mr. Matthews, the miller, who treated him so hospitably the first time he was there, but did not know him again now.
From hence he proceeded to New London, where he chanced to see the captain who had taken him home before, but he avoided him. From New London he proceeded to Groten, where he got a twenty-shilling bill from one Mr. Goyf, and several half-crown bills from other people. He then inquired of his landlord his way to Rhode-island, who accompanied him about two miles of the way, when they chanced to fall into the company of some drovers, who were driving a number of bullocks, for the use of some privateers that lay at Rhode-island; he therefore joined them, and, after about nine or ten miles travelling, they came to a ferry, where they stopped at a public-house for some time, till the bullocks were taken over; but neither the tavern-man nor drovers would suffer him to pay any thing, they pitying his unfortunate condition: and passing over this ferry, they came to Rhode-island.
p. 194Rhode-island, by the natives called Aquetnet, near the Narraganset Bay, is fourteen or fifteen miles long, and four or five miles abroad. It was first inhabited by the English in the year 1639. Those that withdrew to this island were such as espoused the covenant of grace, and were under great persecution from them that sided with the covenant of works. There is a very considerable trade from Rhode-island to the sugar colonies for butter and cheese, a sure sign of the fruitfulness and beauty of the place, for horses, sheep, beef, pork, tallow, and timber, from which the traders have been enriched. It is deservedly called the Paradise of New England, for the great fruitfulness of the soil, and the temperature of the climate, which, though it be not above fifty-five miles from Boston, is a coat warmer in winter, and, being surrounded by the ocean, is not so much affected in summer with the hot land-breezes as the towns on the continent. They live in great amity with their neighbours, and, though every man does what he thinks right in his own eyes, it is rare that any notorious crimes are committed by them, which may be attributed in some measure to their great veneration for the Holy Scriptures, which they all read, from the least to the greatest, though they have neither ministers nor magistrates to recommend it to them.
Here Mr. Carew found many of his old acquaintance, particularly one Mr. Perkins, a stay-maker, and Mr. Gidley and his mother, who kept several negroes for distilling rum, and Mr. Southeon Lingworthy, a pewterer, all natives of Exeter, and one Mr. Martin, of Honiton, in Devon, they were all p. 195very glad to see him; he telling them, that he was taken by the Spaniards, and had escaped from prison, they treated him with very great kindness, and gave him letters to carry to their friends in England.
From hence he went through Piscataqua and Marblehead to Boston, the capital of New England, and the largest city in America, except two or three on the Spanish continent. It is pleasantly situated on a peninsula, about four miles in compass, at the bottom of a fine bay, (the Massachusets,) guarded from the roughness of the ocean by several rocks appearing above water, and by above a dozen islands, many of which are inhabited. One of these, called Nettle’s island, within these few years, was esteemed worth two or three hundred pounds a year to the owner, Colonel Shrimpton. There is but one common and safe passage into the bay, and that not very broad, there being hardly room for three ships to come in abreast; but, being once in, there is room for the anchorage of five hundred sail.
The most remarkable of these islands is called Castle-island, from the castle there built. It stands about a league from the town, upon the main channel leading to it, and is so conveniently situated, that no ship of burden can approach the town, without the hazard of being torn in pieces by its cannon. It was now called Fort William, being mounted with one hundred pieces of ordnance: two hundred more which were given to the province of Queen Anne, are placed on a platform near high water mark, so as to rake a ship fore and aft, before she can bring her broadsides p. 196to bear against the castle. Some of these cannon are forty-two pounders. Five hundred able men are exempt from all military duty in time of war, to be ready to attend the service of the castle at an hour’s warning, upon any signal of the approach of an enemy, of which there seems to be no great danger at Boston; where in twenty-four hours’ time, ten thousand effective men, well armed, might be ready for their defence. To prevent all possible surprise, there is a light-house built on the rock appearing above water, about a long league from the town, which in time of war makes a signal to the castle, and the castle to the town, by hoisting and lowering the union flag, so many times as there are ships approaching, which, if they exceed a certain number, the castle fires three guns, to alarm the town of Boston; and the governor, if need be, orders a beacon to be fired, which alarms all the adjacent country; so that unless an enemy can be supposed to sail by so many islands and rocks in a fog, the town of Boston must have six or more hours to prepare for their reception; but, supposing they might pass the castle, there are two batteries at the north and south end of the town that command the whole bay, and make it impossible for an enemy’s ship of any burden to ride there in safety, while the merchant-men and small craft may retire up into Charles-river, out of the reach of cannon.
It is equally impossible for any ship to be run away with out of this harbour by a pirate; for the castle suffers no ships outward-bound to pass, without a permit from the governor, which is never granted without a clearing from the custom-house, p. 197and the usual notice of sailing, by loosening the fore-top sail.
The bay of Boston is spacious enough to contain, in a manner, the whole navy of England. The masts of ships here, at the proper season of the year, make a kind of a wood of trees, like that which we see upon the river Thames about Wapping and Limehouse, which may be easily imagined, when we consider, that, by the computation given in by the collectors of his majesty’s light-house, it appeared that there were twenty-four thousand tons of shipping cleared annually.
There is a larger pier at the bottom of the bay, one thousand eight hundred, or two thousand feet in length, with a row of warehouses on the north side. The pier runs so far into the bay, that ships of the greatest burden may unload without the help of boats and lighters. The chief streets of the town come down to the head of the pier. At the upper end of it is the town-house, or exchange, a fine building, containing, besides the walk for merchants, the council-chambers, the house of commons, and a spacious room for the courts of justice. The exchange is surrounded with booksellers’ shops, who have a good trade. There are several printing-houses, where the presses are generally full of work, which is in a great measure, owing to the colleges and schools for useful learning in New England.
The town of Boston lies in the form of a half-moon round the harbour, consisting of between three and four thousand houses, and makes an agreeable prospect; the surrounding shore being high, the streets long, and the buildings beautiful. p. 198The goodness of the pavement may compare with most in London; to gallop a horse on it is three shillings and fourpence forfeit.
It is computed the number of inhabitants is not less than twenty-four thousand, which is one-third more than the computation of the city of Exeter, and consequently Boston is one-third bigger than that city, which is pretty near the matter.
There are ten churches in Boston, viz. Old Church, North Church, South Church, New Church, New North Church, New South Church, the Church of England Church, the Baptist Meeting, and the Quakers’ Meeting.
The conversation in this town is as polite as in most of the cities and towns in England; many of their merchants having traded in Europe, and those that stay at home having the advantage of society with travellers; so that a gentleman from London would think himself at home in Boston, when he observes the number of people, their furniture, their tables, their dress, and conversation, which perhaps is as splendid and showy as that of the most considerable tradesmen in London. Upon the whole, Boston is the most flourishing town for trade and commerce in all America. Near six hundred sail of ships have been laden here in a year for Europe and the British plantations. Here the governor commonly resides, the general court and assembly meet, the courts of judicature sit, and the affairs of the whole province are transacted.
The streets are broad and regular; some of the richest merchants have very stately, well built, convenient houses. The ground on which the town stands is wonderfully high; and very good p. 199water is found all over it. There are several wharfs built, which jet into the harbour, one of which is eight hundred feet in length, where large ships with great ease may load and unload. On one side are warehouses almost the whole length of the wharf, where the merchants stow their goods; and more than fifty ships may load and unload there at the same time.
Coming into the city, Mr. Carew was surprised at the grandeur of it; and seeing a green hill at the end of the great street, much like Glastonbury Tower, he went up to it, and had a most beautiful prospect of the city from the top of it, where was placed the mast of a ship, with pullies to draw up a lighted barrel of tar to alarm the country in case of an invasion. Going down the hill again he met two drummers, a sergeant, and several soldiers and marines, who were, by the beat of drum, proclaiming, that the taverns and shopkeepers might safely credit the soldiers and marines to a certain value. Some of the soldiers presently knew him, and, accosting him, persuaded him to go along them to one Mother Passmore’s, a house of rendezvous, where they were very merry together. While they were drinking, in came Captain Sharp, who commanded them, and who was an old acquaintance of our hero’s. What, Mr. Carew! cried the captain in a surprise, who could think of seeing you here? When did you see my brother? I saw him, replied he, about six months ago, but his lady is dead. Is she so? said the captain, I have heard nothing of it. The captain having asked him several other questions, treated him very handsomely, and kept him some time at his own p. 200charge: but his heart glowing to see his native country, he once more resolved to ship himself for old England. He accordingly agreed to take the run with Captain Ball, of the Mary, for fifteen pounds, fifteen gallons of rum, ten pounds of sugar and tobacco, and ten pipes. They were two months on their voyage before they made Lundy, nothing material happening on their passage worthy of being recorded in this true history. The captain would not stop at Lundy for a pilot, but made for Combe, and there took one in, who brought the ship safe to King Road, and the next tide up to the quay at Bristol; and having moored the vessel, the crew spent the night on shore with their jolly landladies.
The next morning early they all got on board, and soon after the captain came with some Bristol merchants. The captain gave Mr. Carew a bill on his brother who lived at Topsham, and having received payment thereof, he soon turned his back on Bristol.
Mr. Carew, having left Bristol, made the best of his way to Bridgewater, and from thence unto Taunton, and so to Exeter, supporting his travelling expenses by his ingenuity as a mendicant. As soon as he arrived at Exeter, he made the best of his way to the house of an old acquaintance, where he expected to hear some news of his beloved wife; but going through East-gate, he was met by two gentlemen, who immediately cried out, Here’s our old friend Carew! They then laid hold of him, and took him back to the Oxford Inn, where they inquired where he had been this long time. He acquainted them in what manner he had been p. 201seized, on Topsham quay, and carried to Maryland; he likewise informed of Captain Simmonds’s death, (which they were sorry to hear of,) and that the vessel had been carried into port by Harrison, the mate, who was afterwards drowned, in company with some planters, in Talbot river.
Fame having soon sounded the arrival of our hero through every street in Exeter, several gentlemen flocked to the Oxford Inn to visit him, and amongst the rest merchant Davy. What! have you found your way home again? said the merchant. Yes, yes, replied he; as you sent me over for your pleasure, I am come back for my own; which made the gentlemen laugh very heartily. The merchant then asked him several questions about Captain Simmonds and Harrison, where he left the vessel, and if he had been sold. No, no, replied he, I took care to be out of the way before they had struck a bargain for me; and, as to the vessel, I left her in Miles river. The gentlemen could not help being surprised at his ingenuity and expedition, in thus getting home twice before the vessel which carried him out. Merchant Davy then proposed making a collection for him, and began it himself with half-a-crown; having therefore received a handsome contribution, he returned the gentlemen thanks, and took his leave, being impatient to hear some news about his wife. He went directly to his usual quarters, at Kitty Finnimore’s, Castle-lane, where he occasioned no little terror to his landlady, she believing it to be his ghost, as she heard he was certainly dead; however, our hero soon convinced her he was real flesh and blood. He then inquired when she heard from p. 202his wife, who informed him, to his great joy, that both his wife and daughter were there a few days before, and were going towards Newton-Bushel; but they had given over all thoughts of seeing him any more, as they thought him dead.
He now set forward immediately for Newton-Bushel. Calling at Lord Clifford’s in his way, he was told by Mrs. Ratcliffe, the housekeeper, and Mr. Kilshaw, the steward, (who were quite surprised to see him,) that his wife had been there just before, supposing him to be dead; and that he would find her at Newton-Bushel. Though it was then night, our hero, impatient of seeing his wife and daughter, set forward for Newton-Bushel, where he arrived late in the night. Going directly to his usual quarters, he found them all in bed, and calling out to the woman of the house, his wife, hearing his voice, immediately leaped out of bed, crying, it was her poor Bampfylde. A light was then struck with as much expedition as possible, and his wife, daughter, and landlady, all came down to open the door to him.
Here, how shall I find words to express the transports of our hero, the tender embraces of his wife, the endearing words of his daughter, and hearty congratulations of the landlady! Unable for the task, most gentle reader, I must imitate that celebrated painter who painted Agamemnon with a covering over his face, at the sacrifice of his daughter, and draw a veil over this scene of tenderness; let it suffice to say, that their joy was too full to be contained, and, not finding any other passage, gushed out in tears.
The next morning, accompanied by his wife and p. 203daughter, he went and paid his respects to Sir Thomas Carew, at Hackum, where they were received with great kindness; and Sir Thomas told him, if he would forsake the mendicant order, he would take care to provide for him and his family. He returned Sir Thomas a great many thanks, but declared, that, as he had entered himself into the mendicant order, he was resolved to continue therein as long as he lived; but hoped if any accident happened to him, he would extend his goodness to his dear wife and daughter.
It was about this time, that one of the greatest personages in the kingdom being at Bath, Mr. Carew was drawn thither with the rest of the world to see her, but to more advantage indeed to himself than most others reaped from it; for making himself as much an Hanoverian as he could in his dress, &c., he presented a petition to her as an unfortunate person of that country; and as every one is inclined to be kind to their own countryfolks, he had from her a very princely benefaction.
Some time after this, Squire Morrice, who succeeded to the fine seat and estate of Sir William Morrice, near Launceston, in Cornwall, coming to reside there, and hearing much talk of Mr. Carew, was very desirous of seeing him; and he happening to come soon after into that neighbourhood, some of the servants, who knew their master’s inclinations, chancing to see him, soon conducted him to the house, and showed him immediately into the parlour, where Mr. Morrice was with a good deal of company. Mr. Carew was made very welcome, and the company had a great deal of conversation with him, during which Mr. Morrice very nicely p. 204examined every feature in his countenance, and at last declared, that he would lay any wager that he should know him again, come in what shape he would, so as not to be imposed upon by him. One of the company took Mr. Morrice up, and a wager was laid that Mr. Carew should do it within such a limited time; this being agreed upon, Mr. Carew took his leave. He soon began to meditate in what shape he should be able to deceive the circumspection of Mr. Morrice; and in a few days came to the house, and endeavoured in two or three different shapes, and with as many different tales, to obtain charity from Mr. Morrice, but he, remembering his wager, would hearken to none. At last, understanding that Mr. Morrice was to go out a hunting one morning with several of the company who were present when the wager was laid, he dressed himself like a neat old woman, and walking in the road where they were riding along, all of a sudden he fell down, and so well counterfeited all the distortion of the most violent fits in such a terrible manner, that Mr. Morrice was greatly affected with the poor creature’s condition, ordering his servants to get down and assist her, staying himself till she was brought a little to herself, then gave her a piece of money, and ordered one of his servants to show her his house, that she might have some refreshment there; but Mr. Carew, having obtained what he desired, flung off the old woman, and discovered himself to Mr. Morrice and the rest of the company, wishing them all a good-morrow: upon which he owned that he had fairly lost the wager.
Mr. Carew, some time after this, steered his p. 205course for Oxford, where he visited Messrs. Treby, Stanford, Cooke, and other collegians, his particular friends, of whom he got a trencher-cap.—Having staid at Oxford as long as was agreeable to his inclinations, he set out for Abington, and from thence to Marlborough, having put on a pair of white stockings, a grey waistcoat, and the trencher-cap. Thus equipped, he pretended to be disordered in his mind; and, as his knowledge of the Latin tongue enabled him to intermix a few Latin phrases in his discourse, which he made very incoherent, he was in no fear of being discovered. Under this character he, therefore, went to the minister of Marlborough, who, seeing his dress, and finding he could talk Latin, made no doubt but he was an Oxford scholar, whose brain was turned, either by too much study or some misfortune; he therefore talked to him a good deal, endeavouring to find out the cause; telling him, that, though he was unfortunate now, things might go better with him hereafter; but he could get nothing but incoherent answers from him: however, he gave him half-a-crown. From hence he went to Market-Lavington, where he likewise deceived the minister; and going forward to Warminster, he met with Dr. Squire, and his brother, the Archdeacon of Bath, who both took him for an Oxford scholar whose brain was turned, and relieved him as such.
The next morning he went in the same dress to Mrs. Groves, at Wincanton, and from thence to the Rev. Mr. Birt’s, at Sutton, at both of which places he was much pitied, and handsomely relieved. He then steered for Somerton, and visited p. 206the Rev. Mr. Dickenson; but this mask would not avail him here, for the parson discovered him through it; but he desired him to keep it secret till he was gone out of town, which he accordingly did: he therefore went boldly to the Rev. Mr. Keat, and pretended to be a scholar of Baliol College, which Mr. Keat believing, and pitying his condition, he gave him a crown.
Next day he went to Bridgewater in the same habit, and from thence to Sir Charles Tynte’s, at Haswell: going into the court, he was met by the Rev. Mr. Standford, who immediately knew him, and accosted him with, How do you do, friend Carew! Soon after that came Sir Charles, who accosted him also in the same manner. Mr. Standford and he made themselves very merry at the character he had assumed. Well, said Sir Charles, we will make you drink, but unless you can deceive my Bess, (so he was pleased to call his lady,) you shall have nothing of me; but whatever she gives, I’ll double. He was then ordered into the hall, and exchanged his cap for a hat with one of the servants; after waiting some time lady Tynte came down. It will here be proper to observe, that this lady, though of a very charitable disposition to her poor neighbours, having been often deceived by mendicants, and finding few of them deserving of her charity, had resolved to relieve no unknown objects, however plausible their tale; but our hero, depending upon his art, was not afraid to accept of Sir Charles’s challenge. From the servants’ hall he watched a proper opportunity of accosting the lady, and she passed and repassed several times before he could speak to her. At last, seeing her p. 207standing in the hall talking with Sir Charles, he came behind her, and accosted her with—God bless you, most gracious lady. The lady turned about and asked him pretty hastily from whence he came? I am a poor unfortunate man, replied he, who was taken by two French privateers coming from Boston, and carried into Boulogne, where we were teased day and night to enter into the French service, but refused to do it. And how got you from thence? asked the lady. We took an opportunity of breaking out of the prison, and seized upon a fishing-boat in the harbour, with which we got safe to Lymington, being in all twenty-five of us, where we sold our boat. What do you beg for then? if you sold your boat, you must have money. Several of us were sick, replied he, which was very expensive. But what countryman are you? I am an Old England man, please you, my lady, but I have my wife in Wales. From what part? says the lady, who was a native of Wales herself. I married, replied he, one Betty Larkey, who lived with Sir John Morgan, and afterwards with parson Griffy, at Swansea. Ay, did you marry Betty Larkey?—how many children have you by her? Only one daughter, replied he. In the mean time Sir Charles and the parson were ready to burst with containing their laughter, to see how he managed my lady to bring her to; for his assertion of having married Betty Larkey, who was a country-woman of my lady’s, and formerly known to her, was a loadstone which presently drew my lady’s hand to her purse; then turning to Sir Charles, she asked him if he had any small money about him? I have none, replied Sir p. 208Charles, pretty bluntly, being scarce able to contain himself from bursting out into laughter; so she went up stairs, and soon returning, gave him five shillings, and asked him to eat and drink, going out herself to call the butler. In the mean time Sir Charles stepped nimbly into the servant’s hall, and fetched the Oxford cap, which he put on Mr. Carew’s head. The lady and butler came in immediately after, and she, seeing the cap upon his head, cried out, God bless me! what, did you bring that from France? It is just like one of our Oxford scholar’s caps. Ay, so it is indeed, my lady, replied Sir Charles; why don’t you know who it is? It is Bampfylde Moore Carew. Ay, ay, this is your doings, Sir Charles, said the lady; and went away somewhat disgusted at the trick that had been put upon her. Sir Charles, however, was as good as his word, in doubling the money his lady gave, and parson Standford gave him half-a-crown.
Some time after this, he called upon the Miss Hawkers, of Thorn, near Yeovil, who treated him very hospitably, and inquired what news he had heard, it being in the late rebellion. Whilst he was talking with them, he observed a new house almost opposite, and inquired who lived there. They told him one parson Marks, a dissenting clergyman; upon which, taking leave of the ladies, he stept over the way, and knocked boldly at the door, which was opened by the parson himself. Sir, said Mr. Carew, pulling off his hat, and accosting him with a demure countenance, I have come three miles out of my road on purpose to call upon you. I believe, Sir, you are acquainted with my brother, Mr. John Pike, of Tiverton, teacher p. 209of a dissenting congregation of that place; and you have undoubtedly heard something of his brother Roger Pike, which unfortunate man I am, having been taken prisoner coming from Boston in New England, by two French privateers, and carried into Boulogne, where we were cruelly treated. Alack, alack! said the parson; pray come in, good Mr. Roger. I am indeed very well acquainted with that worthy servant of God, your brother, Mr. John Pike, and a gracious man he is; I have likewise heard him mention his brother Roger. He then ordered some victuals and drink to be instantly brought out for good Roger Pike. While he was eating, he inquired how he got away from Boulogne. He replied, that twenty-five of them had broken out of prison, and seized upon a vessel, in the harbour, by which they had got safe to the English coast. Well, said the parson, what news did you hear in France? It is reported there, replied he, that the rebels are very powerful in Scotland, and that great numbers are gone over to them safe from France. Stop a little, Roger, cried the parson; and running up stairs, soon after came down with a letter in his hand, which he read to him, wherein it was said that the rebels were very powerful; then shaking his head very sorrowfully, cried, indeed, Mr. Pike, I cannot be at ease, for they say they will make us examples, on account of the 30th of January. Never fear them, Sir, said Mr. Carew; we shall be a match for them in Devonshire and Cornwall. I am afraid not, cries the parson, shaking his head again; I have had no rest for thinking of them these several nights past. p. 210After some farther discourse, he fetched Mr. Pike a good Holland shirt, and clapped a half-guinea into his hand, entreating him to take a bed with him that night, for that he should be heartily welcome; but he desired to be excused, and took his leave with many thanks, and returned to Miss Hawker’s again. Well, Mr. Carew, cried the ladies, you have had a very long conference with the parson. Ay, ay, replied he, and to good purpose too, for this shirt and a half-guinea are the fruits of it; and then told them in what manner he had deceived the parson, which made them laugh very heartily; they then gave him five shillings, and promised to keep Mr. Pike’s secret for a day or two.
A few days after, the parson going over to see the ladies, they asked him if a poor seaman had been at his house. Yes, replied the parson, it was one Roger Pike, whose brother had a congregation in Tiverton, and whom I am very well acquainted with. And did you give him any assistance? Yes, I gave him a shirt and a half-guinea: and we gave him five shillings, said the ladies, not as being Roger Pike, but as Mr. Bampfylde Moore Carew; at which the parson was in a very great hurry, and would scarce be convinced but that it was old Roger Pike. Thus had Mr. Carew the happy art of suiting his eloquence to every temper and every circumstance; for his being the brother of good Mr. Pike, of Tiverton, was as powerful a loadstone to attract the parson, as his marrying of Betty Larkey had been to Lady Tynte.
From hence he went to parson White’s, at Cocker, where he found Justice Proctor: here he p. 211passed for an unfortunate sailor, who had been cast away coming from the Baltic, and was now travelling to his native place, Tintagel, in Cornwall. Parson White asked who was minister there, he replied, that one Atkins was curate, and that there was no other there at that time. The justice asked but few questions, and told him he ought to have a pass, and asked where he landed. He replied, at Dover. Had you a pass, then, from the mayor there? We had one, said he, very readily; but some of our company being sick, and myself in good health, I left them the pass, and came forward by myself, they not being able to travel so fast. Why then, says the justice, you are liable to be taken up as a vagrant, for begging without a pass: however, we will relieve you; and if you call upon gentlemen only, they will scarcely molest you. He returned them a great many thanks for this civility, and then went to a tanner’s hard by, where he changed his story, and passed for a bankrupt tanner. Here he was likewise relieved, as he touched upon the right string; for had he passed here for an unfortunate sailor, probably his eloquence would have had no effect.
From hence he went to the parson of East Chinock, and told him that he belonged to a man-of-war, in which his brother was lieutenant. Being then about dinner time, the parson asked if he could eat sea provisions, such as pork and peas, which he readily accepting of, they sat down together, and had a great deal of discourse about the lieutenant. Next he went to Madam Philips, of Montacute, where happened to be Parson Bower, of Martock, who asked him if he knew Bampfylde p. 212Moore Carew? Sir, replied he, I am of Tintagel, in Cornwall, and know the Carews there very well, and have heard of the wanderer you speak of, who, I’m told, is a great dog stealer, but know not what has become of him; for some say he is hanged. God forbid he is hanged, cried the parson, upon account of his family; and after some other questions, he was relieved with sixpence. Leaving Montacute, he went forward to Yeovil, having appointed to meet his wife and daughter at the sign of the Boot, Sherborne, and from Yeovil to Squire Hellier’s, at Leweston, who treated him very handsomely, and would have had him stay there all night, but he excused himself, being impatient to see his wife and daughter.
As soon as he came to Sherborne, he went to his usual quarters, the sign of the Boot, where he inquired for his wife and daughter; but how was he thunder-struck, when he was told they were in hold, at Webb’s the bailiff! He inquired for what reason, and was informed, that four officers had been walking all through the town to take up all strangers, such as chimney-sweepers, tinkers, pedlars, and the like. What could our hero do? he revolved it over and over in his mind, and at last determined to go to Webb’s, resolving either to free his wife and daughter, or else to share their fate. When he came there, he asked to see the prisoners, and demanded upon what account they had apprehended his wife, as she had neither stolen nor begged in the town: this occasioned high words, and at last ended in blows. Long did our hero maintain an unequal fight with great valour. At length, being overpowered with numbers, he p. 213fell, but not till his assailants had felt the force of his arms. He was kept in safe custody that night, and the next morning taken, with the rest of the prisoners, before Thomas Medlycott, Esq., at Milbourn Port, where they were all examined, and all maintained their professions to be extremely useful. The chimney-sweeper alleged, he preserved houses from taking fire, whereby he saved whole towns, and consequently was a useful member to his country. The tinker harangued on the usefulness of kettles, brass pans, frying-pans, &c., and of consequence, what use he was of to the public: and our hero declared he was the famous Bampfylde Moore Carew, and had served his king and country both by sea and land.
The justice thought proper to send these useful men to their respective parishes, at the public expense: accordingly Mr. Carew, with his wife and daughter, were ordered to Bickley, in Devonshire. The Sherborne people waited upon them to Yeovil, where they were delivered to the care of the chief magistrate. The next day, horses being provided, they set out for Thomas Proctor’s, Esq., at Cocker: but, he refusing to sign the pass, they proceeded to Axminster, where the magistrate refused to receive them, on account of the pass not being signed; upon which they would have left Mr. Carew, but he insisted upon being accomodated to the end of his journey, they therefore adjourned to Mr. Tucker’s, about two miles from Axminster, who asked him if he had a mind to have his attendants dismissed, or chose to have their company to Bickley; and he replying that he did not choose to have them dismissed, Mr. Tucker signed the warrant, p. 214and our hero, with his wife and daughter, rode all the way very triumphantly into Bickley, where, as soon as they arrived, the bells were set a ringing, and the greatest joy spread through all the place.
Mr. Carew remained some time at Bickley, but fresh news arriving every day of the progress of the rebels, that insatiable curiosity which had always actuated his breast, prompted him to go and see the army of the rebels: he therefore, taking his leave of his wife and daughter, though they entreated him with tears not to go to the North, made the best of his way towards Edinburgh.
After some days travel, Mr. Carew arrived at the city of Edinburgh, which lies in a sort of a valley, between two hills, one of which is called Salisbury Crags, the other marks the foundation of the castle. It was strongly walled, and is adorned with public and private buildings. At the extremity of the east end of the city stands the palace of Holyrood house; leaving which, a little to the left, you come through a populous suburb to the entrance, called the Water-port. From hence, turning west, the street goes on in a straight line through the whole city to the castle, which is above a mile in length, and is said by the Scots to be the largest and finest street for buildings and number of inhabitants in Europe. From the palace door, which stands on a level with the lowest of the plain country, this street begins to ascend very gradually, being no where steep; but this ascent being continued for so long a way, it is easy to understand that the furthest part must be necessarily very high; for the castle, which stands as it were at the p. 215extremity, west, as the palace does east, makes on all sides (that only excepted which joins it to the city) a frightful and inaccessible precipice. The castle is situated on a high rock, and strongly fortified with a great number of towers, so that it is looked upon as impregnable. In the great church they have a set of bells, which are not rung out as in England, (for that way of ringing is not now known in this country,) but are played on by the hand with keys, like a harpsichord, the person playing having great leather covers for his fists, which enables him to strike with the more force; and for the larger bells there are treddles, which he strikes with his feet.
They play all manner of tunes very musically; and the town gives a man a yearly salary for playing upon them, from half-an-hour after eleven till half-an-hour after twelve every day, Sundays and holidays excepted. On the south side of this church is a square of very fine buildings, called the Parliament Close, the west and south side of which are mostly taken up with the Parliament house, the several courts of justice, the council chamber, the exchequer, the public registers, the lawyers’ library, the post-office, &c. The great church makes up the north side of the square, and the east, and part of the south side, is built into private dwellings, very stately, lofty, and strong, being seven stories high to the front of the square, and the hill that they stand on having a very deep descent; some of them are no less than fourteen stories high backwards. Holyrood house is a very handsome building, rather convenient than large; it was formerly a royal palace and an abbey, founded p. 216by King David I. for the canons regular of St. Austin, who named it Holyrood-house, or the house of the Holy Cross, which was destroyed by Oliver Cromwell, but nobly re-edificed by King Charles the second, and of which his grace the Duke of Hamilton is hereditary keeper; it is now almost entirely neglected.
The entrance from the great outer court is adorned with pillars of hewn stone, under a cupola, in form of an imperial crown, balustrated on each side at the top. The fore part has two wings, on each side of which are two turrets; that towards the north was built by King James V. whose name it bears in letters of gold; and that towards the south (as well as the rest) by Charles II, whereof Sir William Bruce was the architect. The inner court is very stately, all of free-stone, well hewn, with a colonade round it, from whence are entries into the several apartments; but above all, the long gallery is very remarkable, being adorned with the pictures of all the Scotch kings, from Fergus the first, done by masterly hands. Here Mr. Carew met the rebels, but having no mind to join them, he pretended to be very sick and lame; however, he accosted them with, God bless you, noble gentlemen! and the rebels moving on to Carlisle, he hopped after them, and from thence to Manchester, and there had a sight of the Pretender’s son, and other commanders. He afterwards accompanied them to Derby, where a report was spread, that the Duke of Cumberland was coming to fight them; upon which, their courage failing, though the Pretender’s son was for fighting, they retreated back to Carlisle; upon which p. 217he thought it time to leave them, and hopped homewards on his crutches, taking care to change his note to “God bless King George, and the brave Duke William!” Coming into Bristol, he met with one Mr. P---, an apothecary, who had formerly known him at St. Mary Ottery, in Devon. Mr. P--- was very glad to see him, and took him to a tavern, where he treated him very handsomely, and then sent for his wife, sister, and other friends, to come and see him. They were all highly pleased to see a man they had heard so much talk of, and, after spending some hours very merrily with him, they would have him to try his fortune in that city, but to take care of the mint. Accordingly he went to a place of rendezvous of the brothers of the mendicant order in Temple-street, equipped himself in a very good suit of clothes, and then went upon the Exchange, as the supercargo of a ship called the Dragon, which had been burnt by lightning off the Lizard point. By this story he raised a very handsome contribution on the merchants and captains of vessels, it being well known that such a ship had been burnt in the manner he described. He then returned to his friend Mr. P---, the apothecary, and, knocking at the door, asked if he was at home; upon which Mr. P---, came forth, and, not knowing him again in his supercargo’s dress, made him a very low bow, and desired him to walk in. Mr. Carew asked him if he had any fine salve, as he had met with an accident, and burnt his elbow; upon which Mr. P--- ran behind his counter, and reached down a pot of salve, desiring, with a great deal of complaisance, p. 218the favour of looking at his elbow; he then discovered himself, which occasioned no little diversion to Mr. P--- and his family, who made him very welcome.
Going back to his quarters, he laid aside his finery, and dressed himself more meanly, like to a labouring mechanic; he then went into the street, and acted like a madman, talking in a raving manner about Messrs. Whitfield and Wesley, as though he was disordered in his mind by their preaching; calling in a furious manner at every step upon the Virgin Mary, Pontius Pilate, and Mary Magdalen, and acting the part of a man religiously mad. Sometimes he walked with his eyes fixed upon the ground, and then, of a sudden, he would break out into some passionate expressions about religion. This behaviour greatly excited the curiosity and compassion of the people, some of whom talked to him, but he answered every thing they said in a wild and incoherent manner; and, as compassion is generally the forerunner of charity, he was relieved by the most of them.
The next morning he appeared in a morning-gown, still acting the madman, and carried it so far now, as to address himself to all the posts in the streets, as if they were saints, lifting up his hands and eyes in a fervent though distracted manner to heaven, and making use of so many extravagant gestures, that he astonished the whole city. Going through Castle-street, he met the Rev. Mr. B---c, a minister of that place, whom he accosted with his arms thrown round him; and insisted, in a raving manner, he should tell him who was the father of the morning star; which frightened p. 219the parson so much, that he took to his heels and ran for it, he running after him, till he took shelter in a house.
Having well recruited his pockets by this stratagem, he left the city next day, and travelled towards Bath, acting the madman all the way till he came to Bath. As soon as he came there, he inquired for Dr. Cooney’s, and being directed to his house, found two brother mendicants at the door; after they had waited some time, the servant brought each of them a halfpenny, for which his brother mendicants were very thankful; but Mr. Carew gave his halfpenny to one of them; then knocking at the door, and the maid coming out again, Tell your master, said he, I am not a halfpenny man, but that my name is Bampfylde Moore Carew, king of the mendicants, which being told, the Dr. came out with one of his daughters, and gave him sixpence and a mug of drink, for which he returned thanks.
The next day he went to Mr. Allen’s seat, near Bath, and sent in a petition as from a poor lunatic, by which he got half-a-crown. From thence he made the best of his way to Shepton Mallet, when, calling at Mr. Hooper’s, and telling the servant who he was, the mistress ordered him in, and inquired if he was really the famous Bampfylde Carew; she then gave him five shillings, and ordered him to be well entertained. At Shepton Mallet our hero had the pleasure of meeting with his beloved wife, to their mutual joy and satisfaction; and finding several brethren of the order there, they passed some days together with much mirth and harmony.
p. 220Going near Rye, in Sussex, (where, upon account of their extraordinary merit, the two brothers L---d are perpetually mayors,) he met two of his mendicant subjects, who acquainted him there was no entering the town, but with extreme hazard to his person, upon account of the severity which the mayor exercised towards all of their community. Mr. Carew’s wife hearing this, entreated him in the most tender manner not to venture into the town; but as his great heart always swelled when any thing hazardous presented, and as he was willing to show his subjects, by example, that nothing was too difficult for industry and ingenuity to overcome, he was resolved to enter Rye; which he did with a very slow, feeble, and tottering pace, stopping every minute by the most violent fits of coughing, whilst every limb shook with an universal palsy, his countenance appearing rather to be the property of some one among the dead than to belong to any living body: in this manner he crept along to the mayor’s house, and in a most lamentable moan begged some relief. The mayor, seeing so deplorable a figure, said he was indeed a real object of pity; and therefore gave him a shilling, and liberty to go through the town; which he did with no little profit, and with great applause from the mendicants, when they heard of his success.
Steering from thence to Dungeness, he found a vessel ready to sail for Boulogne, on board of which he embarked, and landed safe there; and found it so thronged with English soldiers, (it being soon after the reducing of the army,) that had he not known the contrary, he should have p. 221thought himself in some town in England. Some of the soldiers knowing him, cried out, Here’s Bampfylde Moore Carew! upon which they took him along with them to their quarters, and they passed the day very merrily: the soldiers expressed great discontent at their being discharged, swearing they would never come over to England any more, saying, if they had not come over then, they should have been either starved or hanged. He then inquired how they lived in France? They replied, never better in their lives. From Boulogne he set off for Calais; where he likewise found a great multitude of English soldiers, and more were daily coming in. Whilst he was here, the Duke of Richmond arrived, in his way to Paris; who, seeing many English soldiers, asked some of them why they came there? to which they replied, they should have been either starved or hanged if they had staid in England. Mr. Carew intended to have paid his respects to his grace, but had not an opportunity; and soon after, being taken very ill, was obliged to desist from his intended design of making a tour through France, Germany, &c.
He therefore took a passage in the packet-boat from Calais, and landed at Dover; from hence he went to Folkstone, where he got a pass and relief from the mayor, under the name of John Moore, a native of St. Ives, in Cornwall, who had been cast away on the coast of France, in a vessel coming from Ireland. Having borne this character as long as suited his inclination, he metamorphosed himself again, and appeared in quite a different shape. He now wore a full handsome tie-wig, but a little p. 222changed by age; a good beaver hat, somewhat duffy; a fine broad-cloth coat, but not of the newest fashion, and not a little faded in its colour. He was now a gentleman of an ancient family and good estate, but reduced by a train of uncommon misfortunes. His venerable looks, his dejected countenance, the visible struggles between the shame of asking and the necessity which forced him to it, all operated to move the pity of those he applied to, which was generally shown by handsome contributions, for few could think of offering mites to a gentleman of so ancient a family, and who had formerly lived so well; and indeed how much soever we may envy the great in their prosperity, we are as ready to relieve them in their misfortunes.
Mr. Carew happening to be in the city of Wells, in Somersetshire, on a Sunday, was told that the bishop was to preach that morning: upon which he slips on a black waistcoat and morning-gown, and went out to meet the bishop as he was walking in procession, and addressed himself to his lordship as a poor unhappy man, whose misfortunes had turned his brain; which the bishop hearing, gave him five shillings. From Wells he steered to Bridgewater, but did not appear in the day-time, and went only in the evenings upon his crutches, as a poor lame man, not being known by any one till he discovered himself.
Having heard that young Lord Clifford, his first cousin, (who had just returned from his travels abroad,) was at his seat at Callington, about four miles from Bridgewater, he resolved to pay him a visit. In his way thither resided Parson p. 223C---, who being one whom nature had made up in a hurry without a heart, Mr. Carew had never been able to obtain any thing of him, even under the most moving appearance of distress, but a cup of small drink. Stopping now in his way, he found the parson was gone to Lord Clifford’s, but being saluted at the door by a fine black spaniel, with almost as much crustiness as he would have been, had his master been at home, he thought himself under no stronger obligation of observing the strict laws of honour, than the parson did of hospitality; and therefore soon charmed the crossness of the spaniel, and made him follow him to Bridgewater; for it is very remarkable “that the art has been found of taming the most savage and ill-natured brutes, which is generally attended with success; but it requires a much higher skill, and is but seldom successful, to soften the ill-nature and inhumanity of man: whether it is that the brutes are more capable of receiving instruction, or whether the ill-nature of man exceeds that of the brutes, we cannot well determine.”
Having secured the spaniel, and passed the night merrily in Bridgewater, he set out the next morning for Lord Clifford’s, and in his way called upon the parson again, who very crustily told him he had lost his dog, and supposed some of his gang had stolen him: to which Mr. Carew very calmly replied, What was he to his dog, or what was his dog to him? if he would make him drink it was well, for he was very dry: at last, with the use of much rhetoric, he got a cup of small drink; then, taking leave of him, he went to the Red Lion, in the same parish, where he staid some time. In p. 224the mean time down ran the parson to my Lord Clifford’s, to acquaint him that Mr. Carew was in the parish, and to advise him to take care of his dogs; so that Mr. Carew, coming down immediately after, found a servant with one dog in his arms, and another with another: here one stood whistling and another calling, and both my lord and his brother were running about to seek after their favourites.
Mr. Carew asked my lord what was the meaning of this hurry, and if his dogs were cripples, because he saw several carried in the servants’ arms: adding, he hoped his lordship did not imagine he was come to steal any of them. Upon which his lordship told him, that parson C--- had advised him to be careful, as he had lost his spaniel but the day before. It may be so, replied he: the parson knows but little of me, or the laws of our community, if he is ignorant that with us ingratitude is unknown, and the property of our friends always sacred. His lordship, hearing this, entertained him very handsomely, and both himself and his brother made him a present.
There being about this time a great fair at Bridgewater, in the county of Somerset, our hero appeared there upon crutches as a poor miserable cripple, in company with many of his subjects that were full as unfortunate as himself, some blind, some deaf, some dumb, &c., among whom were his old friends and school-fellows Martin, Escott, and Coleman. The mayor of that corporation, a bitter enemy to their community, jocosely said, that he would make the blind see, the deaf hear, and the lame walk; and by way of preparation or p. 225beginning to this intended cure, he had them all apprehended and confined in a dark hole, which greatly terrified them with the apprehension of severe punishment. After one night’s repose in limbo, he sent a physician or surgeon of most profound skill and judgment to them, who brought the keys of their melancholy apartments, and pretending greatly to befriend them, advised them, if there were any of them counterfeits, to make haste out of the town, or otherwise they must expect no mercy from the mayor, unknown to whom he had privately stolen the keys; then, unlocking the door, forth issued the disabled and infirm prisoners; the lame threw aside their crutches and artificial legs, and made an exceeding good use of their natural ones: the blind made shift to see the way out of town; and the deaf themselves, with great attention, hearkened to this their friend, and followed his advice with all possible speed. The mayor, with the aldermen and several gentlemen, planted themselves opposite to the prison, and were spectators to this diverting scene, calling out to stop them, not with an intention to do them any prejudice, but only of adding a spur to their speed: however there were some who were ready enough to lay hold on them, and our hero, in a struggle of this nature, left a skirt of his garment behind him, which might be done without much violence, as we may reasonably conclude it to have been none of the soundest; and Coleman was so closely pursued, that he plunged into the river, and swam to the opposite shore: in short, so well did these cripples ply their limbs, that none of them p. 226could be taken, excepting a real object, a lame man, who, in spite of the fear and consternation he was in, could not mend his decrepid pace: he therefore was brought before the mayor, who, after slightly rebuking him for his vagrant course of life, ordered him to be relieved in a very plentiful and generous manner, and the whole corporation was exceeding kind to him.
One method of gaining his ends our hero had peculiar to himself. He used with great intent to read the inscriptions on tombs and monuments in church-yards, and when the deceased person had a character for piety and charity, he would with the greatest importunity apply to his or her surviving relations: and, if they refused an alms, he would, in the most moving terms imaginable, implore their charity for the sake of their deceased relation, praying they would follow the laudable and virtuous example of their dead husband, wife, father, mother, or the like; hoping there was the same God, the same spirit of piety, religion, and charity, still dwelling in the house as before the death of the person deceased. These and the like expressions, uttered in a most suppliant and pathetic voice, used to extort not only very handsome contributions, but tears from the person to whom he applied.
Some time after this, he engaged, at Burton, in Somersetshire, in the habit and character of a seaman, cast away in coming from Newfoundland, with a captain, who, by his great severity, had rendered himself the terror of all the mendicant order; but he, relying upon his perfect acquaintance with the country, ventured up to him, p. 227had the best entertainment his house afforded, and was honourably dismissed with a considerable piece of money. Captains H---h and N---n, with both of whom our hero had sailed, were intimate acquaintances of this captain, of whom he asked many questions, and also about Newfoundland, which country trade he had used the most part of the time; to all which questions he gave very satisfactory answers. This captain had detected so many impostors, that he concluded they were all so; but, not being able to find Mr. Carew in any one error, he was very proud of it, pitied and relieved him in an extraordinary manner, went with him himself to the principal people of the town, wrote him letters of recommendation to his distant relations and friends, that lay in his road, and acted with such extraordinary kindness, as if he thought he could never do enough; it is to be remarked, that he passed rather for a passenger than a seaman.
In the same town lived Lord B---y, who had a son, who was captain of the Antelope man-of-war, stationed in the West Indies, and who died on the passage; Mr. Carew informed himself of every circumstance relating thereto, and made it his business to meet his lordship as he came out of church. After his first application, he gave his lordship to understand, that he was a spectator of the burial of his son on board the Antelope; at the same time came up this critical captain, who gave him the character of a man of great veracity, so that his lordship gave him a guinea, his eldest son five shillings, and also good entertainment from the house. This happened to be a fair day; he p. 228thereupon, going into the town, was accosted by an apothecary, who whispered him in the ear, saying, that he knew him to be the famous Bampfylde Moore Carew, and had most grossly imposed upon the captain and the town, but at the same time assured him that he would not injure him, but faithfully keep the secret. In the mean time there was an Irish quack-doctor in view, who had gathered the whole market around him, and who, with more strength of lungs than sense of argument, most loudly harangued, entertaining them in a very florid manner with the sovereign virtues of his pills, plasters, and self; and so far did he impose upon them, as to vend his packets pretty plentifully, which the apothecary could not forbear beholding with an envious eye, and jocularly asked Mr. Carew if he could not help him to some revenge upon this dangerous rival and antagonist of his; which he promised him to do effectually.
Accordingly he got a little phial, and filled it up with spirits of turpentine; he then mixed in with the gaping auditory of this Irish itinerant physician, who was in the midst of them, mounted on his steed adorned with a pompous curb-bridle, with a large parcel of all-curing medicines in his bags behind him, and was with a great deal of confidence and success, Æsculapius like, distributing health around him: we must observe, that our physician had taken his stand among the stalls of orange and gingerbread merchants, shoemakers, glovers, and other such retailers.
Mr. Carew therefore approached him, and planted himself close by the horse, and, wetting p. 229his fingers with the spirits, rested his hand upon the steed, as an unconcerned person might have done; at the same time putting aside the hair, he rubbed the turpentine upon the bare flesh, which immediately beginning to burn and smart, the afflicted quadruped began to express his sense of pain, by flinging his hinder legs, gently shaking himself, and other restless motions, which made the poor mountebank wonder what had befallen his horse; but the pain increasing, the disorderly behaviour of the steed increased proportionably, who now began to kick, prance, stand on end, neigh, immoderately shake himself, utterly disregarding both his bridle and rider, and running a tilt against the stalls of oranges, gingerbread, gloves, breeches, shoes, &c., which he overthrew and trampled under foot; this occasioned a scramble among the boys for the eatables, and there were some who were but too unmerciful to the scattered goods of the poor shoemakers and glovers, who, enraged by their several losses, began to curse the doctor and his Rosinante, who was all this while capering, roaring, and dancing among their oranges, panniers of eggs, &c., to the entire ruin of the hucksters, who now began to deal very heavy blows, both on the unfortunate horse and his distressed master. This odd spectacle and adventure attracted the eyes and attention of the whole fair, which was all in an uproar, some laughing, some crying, (particularly the poor suffering pedlars,) some fighting, and others most unmercifully cursing and swearing; to make short of the story, the doctor rode about the fair, without either hat or wig, at the pleasure and discretion of his p. 230horse, among the ruined and overturned stalls and the dissipated mob, who concluded both the quack and the steed to be either mad or bewitched, and enjoyed their frolicsome situation.
The doctor, being no longer able to keep his seat, fell headlong into the miry street; the horse ran into a river, and rolled himself over several times, to the entire confusion and ruin of the inestimable pills and plasters; the doctor employed a good farrier, and after some time the horse came to himself again. The reader may very easily judge what glorious diversion this was for the apothecary and Mr. Carew, who were spectators of the whole scene. He was treated handsomely upon this account, not only by the apothecary, but all others of the same profession in the town, and several other gentlemen.
Upon Mr. Carew’s departure from Burton, the generous captain befriended him with many recommendatory letters to friends and acquaintance, that lay in his road, as he pretended: nay, indeed, he was never out of it; thence he proceeded to Bristol, and other places where the letters were directed to, and received considerable sums of money from many, on account of these letters, which were mostly to captains of vessels, and gentlemen that had been at sea, with whom he several times passed muster very well; it being by desire of the captain, as was mentioned in the letters, that they examined him.
Sometimes he and his wife, in conjunction with Coleman and his wife, being all dressed genteelly, passed for gipseys of extraordinary knowledge and reputation: many a poor credulous unsuspecting p. 231person became their prey, and many a good booty they got in almost every town of the counties of Cornwall and Devon. Once in particular, himself and Coleman, with both their spouses, being in Buckford-sleigh, near Exeter, one Mr. Collard, a wealthy but simple shoemaker, came to their quarters, to consult them on a very intricate and important affair; he told them, “that it was the opinion of every body in the country, that his grandmother had somewhere concealed very large sums of money before her death, and that himself, by several dreams, was confirmed in the same opinion, and that he thought proper to advise with them upon the affair; not doubting but they, by the help of their profound learning and knowledge, for which they were so famous through the west, were capable of informing him in what particular place he might find this particular treasure, which if they would discover to him, he would give them thirty guineas.”
Our magicians, after long deliberation and consultation with their books, told him, “that if he would that night take a walk with one of them, he would see the spirit of his grandmother; that he must not be afraid of the apparition, but follow it till it vanished away, and in that individual spot of ground from which the ghost vanished, there he would find the hidden treasure.”
In order for the execution of this scheme, Coleman put a woman’s cap on his head, washed his face, and sprinkled meal on it while wet, stuck the broken pieces of a tobacco-pipe between his teeth, and wrapping his body in a white sheet, planted himself in the road that Collard and Mr. Carew p. 232were to come; the moon at this time shone very bright, which gave an additional horror to the pretended spectre. Our hero, by virtue of his supposed profound learning and most mysterious science, spoke to it in an unknown language, to the following effect:—“High, wort, bush rumley to the toggy cull, and ogle him in the muns;” at which command the terrific hobgoblin fiercely advanced up to poor Collard, and with a most ghastly look stared him in the face; the shoemaker was greatly terrified thereat, and shook and trembled as if a fit of the ague had been upon him, and, creeping close to Mr. Carew, laid fast hold of his clothes, imagining he had sufficient power to protect him from the threatening appearance of this insolent apparition; whereupon he bid the ghost, “hike to the vile;” and would have persuaded the frightened Collard to have followed his departing grandmother, in order to observe the particular place from which she vanished; but no persuasions of his could induce him to move from his side.
They then returned to the alehouse they had left, and Mr. Carew (this method of conjuration miscarrying through the shoemaker’s fear,) cast a figure, and informed Crispin, that, if he took up two or three planks of the floor of his little parlour, he would there find the concealed treasure, at the depth of about three or four feet: upon his hearing this joyful news, the shoemaker instantly disbursed the thirty guineas, highly extolling them as people of the profoundest skill that he had ever heard of or conversed with: but whether he was of the same opinion when he came to dig for the p. 233treasure, we will not take upon us to say—but we may suppose the contrary.
Happening, a short time after this, to be in Brakeness, near Lymington, in the character of a cast-away seaman, he went to the house of Mr. Joseph Haze, an eminent and wealthy presbyterian parson, of whom he begged relief, in the most earnest manner he was able, for God’s sake, with uplifted eyes and hands, and upon his bended knee; but could not with all his importunity and eloquence obtain a crust of bread, or a draught of small beer. Mr. Carew, not accustomed to be unsuccessful in his applications, could by no means brook this churlishness of the parson, and thought it highly necessary, for the benefit of his community, that it should not go unpunished. He was a great sportsman, and had two fine greyhounds, the one named Hector, the other Fly; and two excellent spaniels, Cupid and Dido, and an admirable setting dog, called Sancho. Our hero, therefore, about twelve o’clock on the same night, paid a second visit to the parson’s house, and brought away all these fine dogs with him. And afterwards he sent a letter to the parson, to this purpose:—
“You err, if you suspect yourself to have been wronged of your dogs by any of your neighbours; the cast-away seaman, who begged so earnestly, for the love of God, to whom you would not vouchsafe a crust of bread, or a draught of small beer, took them away, to teach you another time to behave to unfortunate strangers more p. 234as becomes your profession, and your plentiful circumstances.”
The mayor of Weymouth, in Dorsetshire, fared little better at his hands. This gentleman was an implacable enemy to all Mr. Carew’s subjects. He therefore, happening to be in that town, and overhearing the mayor talking to a gentleman in the street, and saying that he was going to dine with Captain Colloway, of Upton, he thought this a proper opportunity for taking some revenge of the mayor, for the many indignities he had put on his subjects. Having soon got intelligence what suits of clothes the mayor had, and understanding he had a good snuff-coloured suit, he went to his house, and informed the lady mayoress that he was a seaman under misfortunes, had met with the mayor, as he was going to dinner at Captain Colloway’s, of Upton, and his honour had sent him to her, giving him orders to receive his snuff-coloured suit of clothes from her; which the good natured gentlewoman hearing, without the least scruple, quickly brought him the coat, waistcoat, and breeches. Thus our hero, by turning his natural ingenuity to account, procured a handsome suit of clothes, while, at the same time, he was revenging himself upon his enemy; fulfilling the old proverb of killing two dogs with one stone. It is unnecessary to say, that our hero departed from Weymouth forthwith.
Mr. Carew being in Bristol, at a time when there was a hot press, wherein they not only impressed seamen, but able-bodied landmen they could any where meet with, which made some fly p. 235one way, and some another, putting the city into a great rout and consternation, he, among the rest, knowing himself to have a body of rather a dangerous bigness, he was willing to secure himself as effectually as he possibly could, greatly preferring his own ease to the interest and honour of his king. He therefore set his wife and landlady to work, who with all speed, and proper attention to cleanliness, made a great number of small mutton-pies, plum-puddings, cheesecakes, and custards, which our hero, in the ordinary attire of a female vender of these commodities, hawked about the city, crying, Plum-pudding, plum-pudding, plum-pudding; hot plum-pudding; piping hot, smoking hot, hot plum-pudding. Plum-pudding echoed in every street and corner, even in the midst of the eager press-gang, some of whom spent their penny with this masculine pie-woman, and seldom failed to serenade her with many a complimentary title, such as bitch and whore.
Arriving at Squire Rhodes’s seat, near King’s-bridge in Devonshire, and knowing the squire had married a Dorsetshire lady, he thought proper also to become a Dorsetshire man, and of Lyme, which was the place of the lady’s nativity, and applied himself to the squire and his lady, whom he met both together, giving them to understand that he was lost in a vessel belonging to Lyme. The squire and his lady gave him five shillings each, for country’s sake, and entertained him very well at their own house. This was early in the forenoon, and he wished to put off his time a little, before proceeding upon another adventure.
Going from hence, he went to a public-house, p. 236called Malston-cross, about a quarter of a mile from the squire’s; he there fell into company with Squire Reynolds, Squire Ford, Dr. Rhodes, brother to the squire, and several other gentlemen, who were met there to make happy after a hunting-match, in which they had been uncommonly successful, and were much inclined to be jovial. In the afternoon there was a terrific storm of rain, thunder, and lightning, that continued with great violence for several hours: in the midst of this tempestuous weather, he (having a great mind to clear his afternoon’s expenses) stripped off all his apparel, except his nightcap, shoes, and breeches, and went to Squire Rhodes’s. Nothing could possibly look with a more deplorable appearance than this naked and wretched spectacle, in such dreadful weather: the landlord with pity regarding his destitute appearance, fetched him a shirt, as he thought, to cover his nakedness; but upon his endeavouring to put it on, it proved to be a smock belonging to the good woman of the house, which afforded a great deal of diversion to the good squire and his benevolent lady, who happened to be looking from their window enjoying the mistake; when, calling to him, and inquiring from whence he came, he pretended to have been cast away at Bigbury-bay, during the late violent tempest, in a vessel belonging to Poole, and he was the only person on board that had escaped. Squire Rhodes ordered a fine Holland shirt, and a suit of good clothes to be given to him, as also a hearty refreshing dram; and then, kindly giving him five shillings, dismissed him with every mark of commiseration for his unfortunate condition, not p. 237in the least suspecting him to be the poor Lyme man, whom both his lady and himself had been so generous in relieving his wants in the morning. Having succeeded so much to his satisfaction in levying two contributions, in one day, on the benevolent Squire Rhodes and his lady, he quickly determined on making another trial upon their good-nature: for which purpose he retired to the nearest house which was frequented by the members of his community, where he dressed himself as a farmer, and speedily returned to the squire’s, to whose presence he was admitted. He stated that he had been a tenant on the estate of Squire H---, (a gentleman between whom and Squire Rhodes he knew there was a disagreement of long standing,) for many years, where he had reared a numerous and happy family in respectability: that about three years ago the squire had seduced his eldest daughter, a handsome girl of eighteen years, who died in giving birth to a still-born son: that his wife had died shortly after of a broken heart, and he was left to struggle through the world with a helpless family of young children: that, through bad crops and bad debts, he had fallen in arrears of his rent; and his cruel landlord had seized upon his whole stock, and turned him out of his favourite home, to become a destitute wanderer—destitute of food, shelter or clothing for himself and family. The benevolent Squire Rhodes whose ear was ever open to the tale of pity—whose heart was ever ready to relieve the unfortunate, after venting many imprecations on the hard-hearted squire, bestowed a guinea on the poor farmer.
p. 238Having obtained this third contribution from the unsuspecting squire, he returned to the public-house, where the gentlemen waited for him (for they were the principal occasion of this last adventure); and being informed how he had fared, diverted themselves exceedingly with the stratagem; and shortly after, meeting with Squire Rhodes, they discovered the various impositions that had been practised upon him, and very heartily bantered him thereupon.
Some time after this, Mr. Carew, exercising his profession at Modbury (where squire Rhodes’s father lived), among other houses made his application to Legassick’s, where he by chance was visiting. Mr. Carew knocked at the kitchen door, which being opened, he saw his old friend the squire, who was then alone, and in a careless manner swinging his cane about. As soon as he began to tell his lamentable tale, Mr. Rhodes said, “I was three times in one day imposed on by that rogue, Bampfylde Moore Carew, to whose gang you may very likely belong; furthermore, I do not live here, but am a stranger.” Mean time in comes Mr. Legassick, with a bottle of wine in his hand, giving Mr. Carew a private wink, to let him understand that he knew him, and then very gravely inquired into the circumstances of his misfortune, as also of the affairs and inhabitants of Dartmouth, from whence he pretended to have sailed several times; of all which he gave a full and particular account; upon which Mr. Legassick gave him five shillings, and recommended him as a real object to Mr. Rhodes, who also made the same present; upon which Mr. Legassick burst p. 239out laughing; and, being asked the reason thereof, he could not forbear telling him, even in Mr. Carew’s presence; when Mr. Rhodes, finding himself a fourth time imposed upon by the same person, with a great deal of good nature made himself very merry therewith.
Mr. Carew being now advanced in years, and his strength beginning to fail, he was seized with a violent fever, which confined him to his bed for several weeks; on recovering he reflected how idly he had spent his life, and came to the resolution of resigning the Egyptian sceptre. The assembly finding him determined, reluctantly complied, and he departed amidst the applause, as well as the regrets of his subjects, who despaired of ever again having such a king.
Our hero returned home to the place of his nativity, but finding the air of the town not rightly to agree with him, and the death of some of his relations rendering his circumstances quite easy, he retired to the west country, where he purchased a neat cottage, which he embellished in a handsome style, and lived in a manner becoming a good old English gentleman, respected by his neighbours, and beloved by the poor, to whom his doors were ever open. Here he died, full of years and honours, regretted by all.
Having left his daughter a handsome fortune, she was married to a neighbouring gentleman of good family, by whom she had a numerous family of promising children.
We shall now conclude our true history, by observing, that we consider Mr. Carew to have as good a claim to fame and immortality as any of p. 240the heroes of the present age. We acknowledge he had his faults, but every body knows a perfect character is quite out of fashion, and that the authors of the present age hold it as an absurdity to draw even a fictitious hero without an abundance of faults.
As the Language of the Community of Gipseys is very expressive, and different from all others, we think we shall gratify the curious by publishing a specimen of it.
* * * * *
ABRAM, naked, without clothes, or scarce enough to cover the nakedness.
Ambi-dexter, one that goes snacks in gaming with both parties; also a lawyer that takes fees of a plaintiff and defendant at once.
Alel-Wackets, blows given on the palm of the hand with a twisted handkerchief, instead of a ferula; a jocular punishment among seamen, who sometimes play at cards for wackets, the loser suffering as many strokes as he has lost games.
Abram Cove, among thieves signifies a naked or poor man; also a lusty strong rogue.
Adam, Tiler, a pickpocket’s associate, who receives the stolen goods.
Air and Exercise. He has had air and exercise, i.e., has been whipped at the cart’s tail; or, as it is generally expressed, at the cart’s arse.
Alls, the Five Alls is a country sign, representing five human figures, each having a motto under him. The first is a king in his regalia; his motto, I govern all: the second a bishop in his pontificals; motto, I pray p. 242for all: third, a lawyer in his gown; motto, I plead for all: fourth, a soldier in his regimentals, fully accoutred; with the motto, I fight for all: and the fifth, a poor countryman with his scythe and rake; motto, I pay for all.
Amen Curler, a parish clerk.
Anodyne Necklace, a halter.
Arch Rogue, or Dimber Damber Upright Man, the chief of a gang of gipseys.
Arch Doxy, signifies the same in rank among the female canters or gipseys.
Autumn Mort, a married woman; also a female beggar with several children, hired to excite charity.
Autumn, a church; also married.
Autumn bawler, a preacher.
Autumn cacklers or prick-ears, dissenters of whatever denomination.
Autumn divers, church pickpockets; but often used for churchwardens, overseers of the poor, sidesmen, and others, who manage the poor’s money.
Autumn jet, a parson.
Babes in the Wood, criminals in the stocks.
Badge Coves, parish pensioners.
Bam, a jocular imposition, the same as humbug.
Bandog, a bailiff, or his followers; a sergeant, or his yeomen; also a fierce mastiff.
Bandero, a widow’s mourning peak; also a musical instrument.
Baptised, rum, brandy, or any other spirits that have been lowered with water.
Barker, a salesman’s servant that walks before the shop, and cries, coats, gowns, &c., what d’ye buy?
Barking irons, pistols, from their explosion resembling the barking of a dog.
Barnacles, a good job, or a snack easily got; also, the irons worn by felons in gaols.
Barrel Fever, he died of the barrel fever; he killed himself by drinking.
Battner, an ox.
Bawbee, a halfpenny.
Beak, a justice of peace, or magistrate.
Beard splitter, a whoremaster, or a beadle.
Beater cases, boots.
Bellows, the lungs.
Belly cheat, an apron.
Bill of sale, a widow’s weeds.
Bing, to go, bing avast; get you gone. Binged avast in a darkmans; stole away in the night. Bing we to Rumvilck; shall we go to London.
Bingo, brandy, or other spirituous liquor.
Bingo boy, a dram drinker.
Bingo mort, a female dram drinker.
Bingowaste, get you hence.
Black fly, the greatest drawback on the farmer is the black fly, i.e. the parson.
Bleating rig, sheep-stealing.
Blind harpers, beggars counterfeiting blindness, playing on fiddles, &c.
Black box, a lawyer.
Black Indies, Newcastle, from whence the coals are brought.
Black spy, the devil.
Blind cheek, the breech.
Blowen, a whore.
Bluffer, an innkeeper, or victualler.
Boarding school, Bridewell, Newgate, or any other prison, or house of correction.
Bob, a shoplifter’s assistant, or one that receives and carries off stolen goods.
Bob ken, or a Brownmanken, a well furnished house.
Bone, to apprehend, seize, or arrest.
Bone box, the mouth.
Bone Darkmans, a good night.
Bone setter, a hard-trotting horse.
Booby hutch, a one-horse chaise, noddy, buggy, or leathern bottle.
Borde, a shilling.
Bouncing cheat, a bottle.
Bracket face, ugly, ill-favoured.
Brown George, an ammunition loaf.
Buck’s face, a cuckold.
Bufe, a dog.
Butt’s eye, a crown, or five shilling piece.
Bur, a hanger-on, a dependant.
Bum bailiff, a sheriff’s officer who arrests debtors; so called perhaps from following his prey, and being at their bums, or as the vulgar phrase is, hard at their a---s. Blackstone says it is a corruption of bound bailiff, from their being obliged to give bond for their good behaviour.
Bum brusher, a schoolmaster.
Bus-napper, a constable.
Bus-napper’s kenchin, a watchman.
Bye-blow, a bastard.
Calle, a cloak or gown.
Canniken, the plague.
Cap, to swear.
Captain Queernabs, a fellow in poor clothes.
Caravan, a good round sum of money about a man.
Case, a house, shop, or warehouse.
Caster, a cloak.
Calfskin fiddle, a drum. To smack calfskin; to kiss the book in taking the oath. It is held by the St. Giles’s casuists, that by kissing one’s own thumb instead of smacking calfskin, the guilt of taking a false oath is avoided.
Canticle, a parish clerk.
Canting, preaching with a whining affected tone, perhaps a corruption of chaunting; some derive it from Andrew Cant, a famous Scotch preacher, who used that whining manner of expression. Also, a kind of gibberish used by thieves and gipseys, called, likewise, pedlar’s French.
Catamaran, an old scraggy woman; from a kind of float, made of spars and yards lashed together, for saving shipwrecked persons.
Catch Club, a member of the catch club; a bum bailiff.
Chanticleer, a cock.
Charactered, or Lettered, burnt in the hand. They have palmed the character upon him, they have burned him in the hand.
Charm, a picklock.
Chates, the gallows.
Chanter culls, grub-street writers, who compose songs and carrols for ballad singers.
Cherubims, peevish children, because cherubim and seraphim continually do cry.
Cheat-the-devil, a dicky.
Chife, a knife, file, or saw.
Chosen Pells, highwaymen who rob in pairs, in the streets and squares of London; to prevent being followed by the sound of their horses’ shoes on the stones, they shoe them with leather.
Chuck farthing, a parish clerk.
Clank napper, a silver tankard.
Clickman Toad, a watch; also, an appellation for a west-countryman, said to have arisen from the following—a westcountryman, who had never seen a watch, found one on a heath near Pool, which, by the motion of the hand, and the noise of the wheels, he concluded to be a living creature of the toad kind; and, from its clicking, he named it a clickman toad.
Cloy, thief, robber, &c.
Cloyes, thieves, robbers, &c.
Cly, money; also, a pocket. He has filed a cly; he has picked a pocket.
Cold burning, a punishment inflicted by private soldiers, on their comrades, for any trifling offences of their mess laws; it is administered in the following manner—the prisoner is set against the wall, with the arm which is to be burned tied as high above his head as possible; the executioner then ascends a stool, and having a bottle of cold water, pours it slowly down the sleeve of the delinquent, patting him, and leading the water gently down his body, till it runs out at the bottom of his trowsers—this is repeated to the other arm, if he is sentenced to be burned in both.
Cloak, a silver tankard.
Coach wheel, or a fore coach wheel, half-a-crown; a hind coach wheel, a crown.
Cobblecotter, a turnkey.
Collar day, execution day.
Colquarron, a man’s neck.
Comefa, a shirt, or shift.
Comfortable impudence, a wife.
Cooler, a woman.
Costard, the head.
Court card, a gay fluttering coxcomb.
Cow’s baby, a calf.
Cow-handed, awkward, not dextrous.
Crab shells, shoes.
Cramp word, sentence of death passed on a criminal by a judge:—he has just undergone the cramp word; sentence has just been passed upon him.
Crew, a knot or gang: the canting crew are thus divided into twenty-three orders:—
2. Upright Men.
3. Hookers, or Anglers.
5. Wild Rogues.
6. Priggers, or Prancers.
9. Jarkmen, or Patricoes.
10. Fresh Water Mariner’s or Whip Jackets.
12. Drunken Tinkers.
13. Swaddlers, or Pedlars.
1. Demanders for Glimmer or Fire.
2. Bawdy Baskets.
4. Autumn Morts.
5. Walking Morts.
8. Kinchin Morts.
9. Kinchin Coves.
Croker, a groat, or fourpence.
Croppen, the tail of any thing.
Cuffin cove, a drunken fellow.
Cull, a fellow.
Cut his stick, run away.
Culp, a kick, or blow.
Cup hot, drunk.
Cursitors, pettyfogging attornies.
Cussin, a man.
Darby, ready money.
Dace, twopence;—tip me a dace; lend me twopence.
Dag, a gun.
Damber, or Dimber, a rascal.
Dash, a tavern drawer.
Dawbe, a bribe or reward for secret service.
Decus, a crown.
Degen, a sword.
Dimber Damber, a top-man among the canting crew; also the chief rogue of the gang, or the greatest cheat.
Dimbermort, a pretty wench.
Doash, a cloak.
Dobin rig, stealing ribbons from haberdashers early in the morning, or late at night, generally practised by women in the disguise of maid-servants,
Doctor, milk and water, with a little rum and some nutmeg; also the name of a composition used by distillers, to make spirits appear stronger than they really are.
Doctors, loaded dice that will run but two or three chances—they put the doctors upon him; they cheated him with loaded dice.
Dodsey, a woman; perhaps a corruption of Doxey.
Downy cove, a smart fellow.
Drumbelow, a dull fellow.
Dunnikin, a necessary, or little-house.
Dunaker, a stealer of cows and calves.
Eriffs, rogues just initiated, and beginning to practise.
Facer, a bumper without lip room.
Fastener, a warrant.
Fawney, a ring.
Feeder, a spoon:—to nab the feeder; to steal a spoon.
Fermerdy beggars, all those who have not the sham sores or clymes.
Ferret, a pawnbroker or tradesman, that sells goods to young spendthrifts upon trust, at excessive rates, and then hunts them without mercy, and often throws them into jail, where they perish for their debt.
Fidlam Ben, general thieves; called also St. Peter’s sons, having every finger a fish-hook.
Flag, a groat.
Flash, a periwig.
Flaybottomist, a bum-thrasher, or schoolmaster.
Flick, old-fashioned, or sly.
Flicker, a drinking-glass.
Flicking, to cut, cutting; as flick me some panea and cassan, cut me some bread and cheese.
Flute, the recorder of London, or any other town.
Flyers, shoes or boots.
Fogus, tobacco: tip me a gage of fogus; give me a pipe of tobacco.
Frummagemmed, choked, strangled, or hanged.
Gaberlunzie, a beggar.
Gan, a mouth.
Gans, the lips.
Gage, a liquor pot, or a tobacco pipe.
George, a half-crown piece.
Gem, a fire.
Gentry cove, a gentleman.
Gibberish, the cant language of thieves and gipseys, called pedlars’s French, St. Giles’s Greek, and the Flash tongue: also the mystic language of Geber, used by chemists. Gibberish likewise means a sort of disguised language, formed by inserting any consonant between each syllable of an English word; in which case it is called the gibberish of the letter inserted; if f, it is p. 249the f gibberish; if g, the g gibberish; as in the sentence, How do you do? Howg dog youg dog?
Gigg, a nose: snitchell his gigg; fillip his nose: grunter’s gigg; a hog’s snout. Gigg is also a high one-horse chaise.
Gipseys, a set of wandering vagrants found in the country. When a fresh recruit is admitted into this fraternity, he is to take the following oath, administered by the principal maunder, after going through the annexed forms:—
First, a new name is given him, by which he is ever after to be called; then standing up in the middle of the assembly, and directing his face to the dimber damber, or principal man of the gang, he repeats the following oath, which is dictated to him by some experienced member of the fraternity:
I, Crank Cuffin, do swear to be a true brother, and that I will in all things obey the commands of the great tawney prince, and keep his council, and not divulge the secrets of my brethren.
I will never leave nor forsake the company, but observe and keep all the times of appointment, either by day or night in every place whatever.
I will not teach any one to cant, nor will I disclose any of our mysteries to them.
I will take my prince’s part against all that shall oppose him, or any of us, according to the utmost of my ability: nor will I suffer him, or any one belonging to us, to be abused by any strange abrams, rufflers, hookers, pailliards, swaddlers, Irish toyles, swigmen, whip jacks, jarkmen, bawdy baskets, domerars, clapper dogeons, patricoes, or curtails; but will defend him or them, as much as I can, against all other outliers whatever. I will not conceal aught I win out of libkins, or from the ruffmans, but I will preserve it for the use of the company. Lastly, I will cleave to my doxy-wap stiffly, and will bring her duds, margery praters, goblers, grunting cheats, or tibs of the buttery, or any thing else I can come at, as winnings for her wappings.
Gigger, a door.
Glim, a dark lantern.
Glim, a candle.
Glimstick, a candlestick.
Gaoler’s coach, a hurdle.
Goose Riding: a goose, whose neck is greased, being suspended by the legs to a cord tied to two trees or high posts, a number of men on horseback, riding full speed, attempt to pull off the head; which if they effect, the goose is their prize. This has been practised in Derbyshire within the memory of persons now living.
Grannan gold, old hoarded coin.
Green bag, a lawyer.
Grig, a farthing.
Gropers, blind men.
Gutter-lane, the throat.
Hammer, a great lie, a rapper.
Halberhead, a silly foolish fellow.
Half nab, at a venture, unsight, unseen, hit or miss.
Hamlet, a high constable.
Hand-me-downs, second-hand clothes.
Hanktel, a silly fellow, a mere cod’s-head.
Hansan kelder, a jack in the box, the child in the womb, or a health to it.
Harman, a constable.
Harmanbeck, a beadle.
Hawk, a sharper.
Hazel gold, to beat any one with a stick.
Heaver, the breast.
Hell, the place where the tailors lay up their cabbage or remnants, which are sometimes very large.
Hempen widow, one whose husband was hanged.
Henfright, those commanders and officers who are absolutely swayed by their wives.
High tide, when the pocket is full of money.
Hocus, disguised in liquor, drunk.
Hoggrubber, a close-fisted, narrow-minded, sneaking fellow.
Hop-merchant, a dancing-master.
Hum-box, a pulpit.
Humpty-dumpty, ale boiled with brandy.
Hums, persons at church.
Huskylour, a job, a guinea.
Iron doublet, a parson.
Jackrum, a licence.
Jack Adams, a fool.
Jack-a-dandy, a little insignificant fellow.
Jack-in-a-box, a sharper or cheat.
Jack-at-a-pinch, a poor hackney parson.
Jacobites, sham or collar shirts.
Jack, a seal.
Jet, a lawyer
Ken, a house.
Kill devil, row.
Kinchin, a little child.
King’s pictures, money of any description.
Laced mutton, a woman.
Lag, last; lagging behind, to be hindmost.
Lage duds, a buck of clothes.
Lambskin men, the judges of several courts.
Lansprisado, he that comes into company with only two-pence in his pocket.
Lantern. A dark lantern, the servant or agent that receives the bribe at court.
Libben, a private dwelling-house.
Libbege, a bed.
Lifter, a crutch.
Lightmans, the day, or day-break.
Line of the old author, a dram of brandy.
Little Barbary, Wapping.
Lop’d, run away; he lop’d up the dancers, he whipped up the dancers.
Loge, a watch.
Louse-trap, a comb.
Low tide, when there’s no money in a man’s pocket.
Lushy cove, a drunken man.
Mannikin, a dwarf or diminutive fellow.
Maundering breath, scolding.
Meet, to spend money.
Millclapper, a woman’s tongue.
Mist, a contraction of commission, signifying a shirt, smock or sheet.
Mishtopper, a coat or petticoat.
Moabites, sergeants, bailiffs, and their crew.
Moon-curser, a link-boy.
Mower, a cow.
Muck, money, wealth.
Muttonmonger, a lover of women.
Mutton in long coats, women; a leg of mutton in a silk stocking, a woman’s leg.
Nab, a hat, cap, or head; also a coxcomb.
Ne’er a face but his own, not a penny in his pocket.
Nim gimmer, a doctor, a surgeon, an apothecary.
Nubbing cheat, the gallows.
Nut-crackers, a pillory.
Oak, a rich man of good substance and credit.
Old flick a knowing fellow.
One in ten, a parson.
Pad-the-hoof, journeying on foot.
Panter, a heart.
Pantler, a butler.
Peaches, discovers, informs.
Peeper, a looking-glass.
Peter, a portmanteau, or cloak-bag.
Peg tandrums, as, gone to peg tandrums, dead.
Penance boards, a pillory.
Penthouse nab, a very broad-brimmed hat.
Periwinkle, a peruke or wig.
Philistines, sergeants, bailiffs, and their crew.
Porker, a sword.
Property, a mere tool or implement to serve a turn; a cat’s foot.
Prig, a thief.
Quail pipe, a woman’s tongue.
Rabbit suckers, young spendthrifts, taking goods on tick of pawnbrokers or tallymen, at excessive rates.
Rattling cove, a coachman.
Red rag, a tongue; your red rag will never lie still, your tongue will never be quiet.
Regraters, forestallers in markets.
Rotan, a coach, or wagon, or any thing that runs upon wheels, but principally a cart.
Royster, a rude roaring fellow.
Ruffin, the devil.
Ruffmans, the woods or bushes.
Rumbeck, a justice of peace.
Rumbo, a prison.
Rumboozling welts, bunches of grapes.
Rumboyled, sought after with a warrant.
Rum clank, a large silver tankard.
Rum degen, a silver-hilted or inlaid sword.
Rumdropper, a vintner.
Rum ogle’s, fine, bright, clear, piercing eyes.
Rum-strum, a long wig.
Rum-swag, full of riches.
Scab, a sixpence.
School butter, a whipping.
Sconce, to run in debt, to cheat.
Seeds, poor, moneyless, exhausted.
Setters, or setting-dogs, they that draw in bubbles for old gamesters to rook; also a sergeant’s yeoman, or bailiff’s follower; also an excise-officer.
Sharper, a swindler, a cheat.
Sharper’s tools, false dice.
Shot, clapped or poxed.
Shove the tumbler, whipped at the cart’s tail.
Skin-flint, a griping, sharping, close clown; also, the same as flat.
Smearer, a painter, or plasterer.
Smeller, a nose.
Smelling cheat, a nosegay; also an orchard, a garden.
Smiter, an arm.
Smug, a blacksmith, also neat and spruce.
Smite, to wipe or slap.
Snout, a hogshead.
Sack, a pocket.
Shanks’s naigs, the feet.
Snacks, full share.
Son of prattlement, a lawyer.
Soul driver, a parson.
South-sea mountain, Geneva.
Sow’s baby, a pig.
Spanish money, fair words and compliments.
Spanks, money, gold or silver.
Specked wiper, a coloured handkerchief.
Spiritual flesh-broker, a parson.
Split fig, a grocer.
Splitter of causes, a lawyer.
Spoil pudding, a parson who makes his morning sermon too long.
Squeel, an informer.
Stampers, shoes, or carriers.
Stick flams, a pair of gloves.
Stoter, a heavy blow.
Strapper, a handsome woman.
Strum, a periwig.
Stubble it, hold your tongue.
Suit and cloak, good store of brandy, or agreeable liquor.
Supouch, a hostess or landlady.
Swag, a shop.
Swell cove, a man with plenty of money.
Tagmans, a gown or cloak.
Tanner, a sixpence.
Tears of the tankard, drops of good liquor that falls aside.
Tickler, a knowing fellow.
Tile, a hat.
Tip of the buttery, a goose.
Tip, to give or lend.
Tip’s your flipper, give us a shake of your hand.
Topping cheat, the gallows.
Topping cove, the hangman.
Topt, to go out sharp, to be upon one’s guard.
To twig, to disengage, to sunder, to break off.
To twig the darbies, to knock of the irons.
Track, to go.
Trees, wins threepence.
Trib, a prison.
Trine, to hang, also Tyburn.
Troch, a drunkard.
Trooper, a half-crown.
Tumbler, a cart.
Turkey merchant, driver of turkeys.
Velvet, a tongue.
To tip the velvet, to tongue a woman.
Vinegar, a cloak.
Whack, a share.
Whoball, a milkmaid.
Whisker, a great lie.
White wool, silver money.
Whibble, sad drink.
Whiddle, to tell or discover: he whiddles, he peaches: he whiddles the whole scrap, he discovers all he knows: the cull whiddled because they would not tip him a snack, the fellow peached because they would not give him a share: they whiddle beef and we must brush, they cry out thieves and we must make off.
Whinyard, a sword.
Whip off, to run away, to drink off greedily, to snatch: he whipped away from home, went to the alehouse, where he whipped off a full tankard, and coming back whipped off a fellow’s hat from his head.
White swelling, a woman big with child is said to have a white swelling.
Witcher, a silver bowl.
Wing, a penny.
Wooden Ruff, a pillory; he wore the wooden ruff, he stood in the pillory.
Word-pecker, one that plays with words, a punster.
Yam, to eat heartily, to stuff lustily.
Yarmouth-capon, a red herring.
Yarum, milk, or food made of milk.
Yellow George, a guinea.
Yelper, a town-crier; also one subject to complain or make a pitiful lamentation.
Znees, frost, or frozen.
Zneesy weather, frosty weather.
 As it has been long a dispute among the learned and travellers, whether or no there are cannibals or man-eaters existing, it may seem something strange that we should assert there is, beyond all doubt, one of that species often seen lurking near St. Paul’s, in the city of London, and other parts of that city, seeking whom he may devour.
[58a] Hats or caps.
[58b] Pointing to the new made king.
[58d] Justices of the Peace, or churls,
[58e] A Beggar.
printed by william walker, otley.
***END OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THE SURPRISING ADVENTURES OF BAMPFYLDE MOORE CAREW***
Census Records | Vital Records | Family Trees & Communities | Immigration Records | Military Records Directories & Member Lists | Family & Local Histories | Newspapers & Periodicals | Court, Land & Probate | Finding Aids