Knowles, that I could shoulder the best bower of the Constitution frigate.
I won my bet, but the anchor was so etarnal heavy it broke my heart.
Sure enough he did die that very fall, and he was the only instance I ever heerd tell of a broken heart. The American Eagle Jist look out of the door, said the Clockmaker, and see what a beautiful night it is, how calm, how still, how clear it is, beant it lovely?—I like to look up at them are stars, when I am away from home, they put me in mind of our national flag, and it is generally allowed to be the first flag in the univarse now.
The British can whip all the world, and we can whip the British.
Its near about the prettiest sight I know of, is one of our first class frigates, manned with our free and enlightened citzens, all ready for sea; it is like the great American Eagle, on its perch, balancing itself for a start on the broad expanse of blue sky, afeared of nothin of its kind, and president of all it surveys.
It was a good emblem that we chose, warn’t it? There was no evading so direct, and at the same time, so conceited an appeal as this.
Certainly, said I, the emblem was well chosen.
I was particularly struck with it on observing the device on your naval buttons during the last war—an eagle with an anchor in its claws.
That was a natural idea, taken from an ordinary occurrence: a bird purloining the anchor of a frigate—an article so useful and necessary for the food of its young.
It was well chosen, and exhibited great taste and judgement in the artist.
The emblem is more appropriate than you are aware of—boasting of what you cannot perform—grasping at what you cannot attain—an emblem of arrogance and weakness, of ill-directed ambition and vulgar pretension.
It is a common phrase, said he, (with great composure) among seamen, to say ‘damn your buttons,’ and I guess its natural for you to say so of the buttons of our navals; I guess you have a right to that are oath.
Its a sore subject, that, I reckon, and I believe I hadn’t ought to have spoken of it to you at all.
Brag is a good dog, but hold fast is a better one.
He was evidently annoyed, and with his usual dexterity gave vent to his feelings by a sally upon the blue-noses,who, he says, are a cross of English and Yankee, and therefore first cousins to us both.
Perhaps, said he, that are eagle might with more propriety have been taken off as perched on an anchor, instead of holding it in his claws, and I think it would have been more nateral; but I suppose it was some stupid foreign artist that made that Thomas Chandler Haliburton 148 are blunder—I never seed one yet that was equal to ourn.
If that Eagle is represented as trying what he cant do, its an honourable ambition arter all, but these bluenoses wont try what they can do.
They put me in mind of a great hulk of a horse in a cart, that wont put his shoulder to the collar at all for all the lambastin in the world, but turns his head round and looks at you, as much as to say, “what an everlastin heavy thing an empty cart is, isn’t it?” An Owl should be their emblem, and the motto, ‘He sleeps all the days of his life.’ The whole country is like this night; beautiful to look at, but silent as the grave—still as death, asleep, becalmed.
If the sea was always calm, said he, it would pyson the univarse; no soul could breathe the air, it would be so uncommon bad.
Stagnant water is always onpleasant, but salt water, when it gets tainted, beats all natur; motion keeps it sweet and wholesome, and that our minister used to say is one of the ‘wonders of the great deep.’ This province is stagnant; it tante deep, like still water neither, for its shaller enough, gracious knows, but it is motionless, noiseless, lifeless.
If you have ever been to sea in a calm, you’d know what a plagy tiresome thing it is for a man that’s in a hurry.
An everlasting flappin of the sails, and a creakin of the booms, and an onsteady pitchin of the ship, and folks lyin about dozin away their time, and the sea a heavin a long heavy swell, like the breathin of the chist of some great monster asleep.
A passenger wonders the sailors are so plagy easy about it, and he goes a lookin out east, and a spyin out west, to see if there’s any chance of a breeze, and says to himself, “Well, if this aint dull music its a pity.” Then how streaked he feels when he sees a steam-boat a clipping it by him like mad, and the folks on board pokin fun at him, and askin him if he has any word to send home.
Well, he says, if any soul ever catches me on board a sail vessel again, when I can go by steam, I’ll give him leave to tell me of it, that’s a fact.
That’s partly the case here.
They are becalmed, and they see us going a head on them, till we are e’en almost out of sight; yet they han’t got a steam- boat, and they han’t got a railroad; indeed, I doubt if one half on ’em ever seed or heerd tell of one or tother of them.
I never seed any folks like ’em except the Indians, and they wont even so much as look—they havn’t the least morsel of curiosity in the world; from which one of our unitarian preachers (they are dreadful hands at doubtin them.
I don’t doubt but that some day or another, they will doubt whether everything aint a doubt) in a very learned work, doubts whether they were ever descended from Eve at all.
Old marm Eve’s children, he says, are all lost, it is said, in consequence 149 Early Writing in Canada of too much curiosity, while these copper coloured folks are lost from havin too little.
How can they be the same? Thinks I, that may be logic, old Dubersome, but it an’t sense, don’t extremes meet? Now, these blue-noses have no motion in ’em, no enterprise, no spirit, and if any critter shows any symptoms of activity, they say he is a man of no judgment, he’s speculative, he’s a schemer, in short, he’s mad.
They vegitate like a lettuce plant in sarse garden, they grow tall and spindlin, run to seed right off, grow as bitter as gaul, and die.
A gall once came to our minister to hire as a house help; says she, Minister, I suppose you don’t want a young lady to do chamber business and breed worms do you? For I’ve half a mind to take a spell at livin out (she meant, said the Clockmaker, house work and rearing silk worms.) My pretty maiden, says he, a pattin her on the cheek, (for I’ve often observed ole men always talk kinder pleasant to women,) my pretty maiden, where was you brought up? Why, says she, I guess I warn’t brought at all, I growd up.
Under what platform, says he, (for he was very particular that all his house helps should go to his meetin,) under what Church platform? Church platform, says she, with a toss of her head, like a young colt that got a check of the curb, I guess I warn’t raised under a platform at all, but in as good a house as yourn, grand as you be.—You said well, said the old minister, quite shocked, when you said you growd up, dear, for you have grown up in great ignorance.
Then I guess you had better get a lady that knows more than me, says she, that’s flat.
I reckon I am every bit and grain as good as you be—If I dont understand a bum-byx (silk worm) both feedin, breedin, and rearin, then I want to know who does, that’s all; church platform, indeed, says she, I guess you were raised under a glass frame in March and transplanted on Independence day, warn’t you? And off she sot, lookin as scorney as a London lady, and leavin the poor minister standin starin like a stuck pig.
Well, well, says he, a liftin up both hands, and turnin up the whites of his eyes like a duck in thunder, if that don’t bang the bush! It fairly beats sheep shearin, after the black-berry bushes have got the wool.
It does, I vow; them are the tares them Unitarians sow in our grain fields at night; I guess they’ll ruinate the crops yet, and make the grounds so everlastin foul, we’ll have to pare the sod and burn it, to kill the roots.
Our fathers sowed the right seed here in the wilderness, and watered it with their tears, and watched over it with fastin and prayer, and now its fairly run out, that’s a fact, I snore.
Its got choaked up with all sorts of trash in Thomas Chandler Haliburton 150 natur, I declare.
Dear, dear, I vow I never seed the beat o’ that in all my born days.
Now the blue noses are like that are gall; they have grown up, and grown up in ignorance of many things they hadn’t ought not to know; and its as hard to teach grown up folks as it is to break a six year old horse; and they do ryle one’s temper so—they act so ugly that it tempts one sometimes to break their confounded necks—its near about as much trouble as its worth.
What remedy is there for all this supineness, said I; how can these people be awakened out of their ignorant slothfulness, into active exertion? The remedy, said Mr.
Slick, is at hand—its already workin its own cure.
They must recede before our free and enlightened citizens like the Indians; our folks will buy them out, and they must give place to a more intelligent and ac-tive people.
They must go to the lands of Labrador, or be located back of Canada; they can hold on there a few years, until the wave of civilization reaches them, and then they must move again as the savages do.
It is decreed; I hear the bugle of destiny a soundin of their retreat, as plain as anything.
Congress will give them a concession of land, if they petition, away to Alleghany backside territory, and grant them relief for a few years; for we are out of debt, and don’t know what to do with our surplus revenue.
The only way to shame them, that I know, would be to sarve them as uncle Enoch sarved a neighbour of his in Varginy.
There was a lady that had a plantation near hand to his’n, and there was only a small river atwixt the two houses, so that folks could hear each other talk across it.
Well, she was a dreadful cross-grained woman, a real catamount, as savage as a she bear that has cubs, an old farrow critter, as ugly as sin, and one that both hooked and kicked too—a most particular onmarciful she devil, that’s a fact.
She used to have some of her niggers tied up every day, and flogged uncommon severe, and their screams and screeches were horrid—no soul could stand it; nothin was heerd all day, but oh Lord Missus! oh Lord Missus! Enoch was fairly sick of the sound, for he was a tender-hearted man, and says he to her one day, Now do, marm, find out some other place to give your cattle the cowskin, for it worries me to hear ’em take on so dreadful bad—I can’t stand it, I vow; they are flesh and blood as well as we be, though the meat is a different colour; but it was no good—she jist up and told him to mind his own business, and she guessed she’d mind hern.
He was determined to shame her out of it; so one morning arter breakfast he goes into the cane field, and says he to Lavender, one of the black overseers.
Muster up the whole gang of slaves, every soul, and 151
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