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sinecures, as they fell. (Neither Merryman nor any of his family, at that time, held any place where there was any thing or nothing to do; we shall see hereafter how honores mutabant mores, not only with him, but with many other of these patriots !)
We cannot close this subject without noticing the indecent interference of one of the Squire's younger brothers in the debates on the present subject, as well as on that respecting his father's illness; in both of which discussions, delicacy, if he had had any, would have restrained him from taking a part. His observations, if they were worthy of that term, were an insult to the tenantry, their representatives, and to common sense. He censured the pamphlets which had been written, and the expressions made use of in the Common Hall to his brother's prejudice. He said, that though some of the delegates bad exerted themselves in obtaining a subsidy of 200,000 livres a year for one ally, 1,200,000 for another, and a loan for 4,600,000 for a third; but when his brother's business was brought forward, it was termed “ an unpleasant task," "an arduous undertaking”- the regret of laying
additional burthens on the tenants.” If his brother's business was bad, surely it could not be mended by the opening of such a flippant fool's mouth. If, to the excessive burthens which the tenants were obliged to bear for their own protection, the expences of a profligate kept mistress, panders, blacklegs, and 'Jew usurers be added, had not the people a right to signify their disapprobation of having the sweat of their brows wrung from them for such purposes ? Had not the delegates, on whose generosity his brother, nay his whole family, had several times thrown themselves, a right to enquire into the expenditnre of the money with which they were entrusted, and to vote against it if it were to be squandered in debauchery ? Lastly, was there any parallel between the extravagance of his brother and the necessary aids granted to the allies of the tenantry, and for their own preservation from an insolent, rapacious, inveterate, and successful foe, as the Gulls then were? No, neither was the Common Hall like the quarter-deck of a man of war, where the ipse dixit of a petty tyrant is law.-To the great satisfaction of the tenants, this hopeful sprig,
in imitation of Don Quixote when he put on the barber's bason for Mambrino's helmet, thrust his brainless head into a cracked Jordan, and was so well pleased with the achievement, that he very seldom pestered the Common Hall afterwards.
To wind up the Squire's business for this bout, the delegates concluded to settle on him 125,000 livres a year (exclusive of his own estate of 13,000 livres a year), out of which 78,000 livres annually were to be deducted and applied in payment of his incumbrances. A handsome jointure was settled on the bride, and, to smooth down the people, a law was made to prevent any future Rising Suns from falling into such an abyss of debts. The tenants, however, knew too much of the past to imagine that it would be an impregnable shield to them in future. They were aware of the truth of the old saying, 5 Fresh men, fresh measures,” and that laws, in the hands of the framers, are only like Penelope's web, wove and unravelled at pleasure. One of them observed, that if, after so necessary and salutary a law, made with all possible deliberation, any future delegate should vote away the
money of his constituents for similar acts of profligacy, he would deserve the gallows as much as a servant, who being entrusted with the care of his master's house, should play booty with a thief and let him in at midnight to plunder it.
We are of the same opinion, and would recommend that every candidate at an election should subscribe a similar declaration. If he should afterwards act contrary to it, although no other punishment could be inflicted on him, yet it would be some consolation to have made him subscribe to his own deserts.
The Squire's vices appeared to be now only just beginning, and even his most slippery . sycophants could not plead in bis excuse, as formerly, that they were youthful follies; the common consent of all nations was against such a plea. The Romans fixed the period of maturity, or full age, in males and females, at 25 years; the Britons, copying from the Saxons, have reduced it to 21; in Naples they are of full age at 18; but in France not till 30, and in Holland at 25. Now, reader, the Squire was 35, and if his senses had not arrived at perfection
then, it was not likely they ever would be matured.
At the end of nine calendar months, wanting one day, from the wedding-day, Mrs. George Gildrig gave birth to a daughter; but this, so joyful an event to most parents, seemed to have taken a quite different effect on the Squire. His gloomy and sullen conduct betokened the dark scene which afterwards was displayed in all its effects, but not in its causes; the latter were veiled in all possible obscurity, as are all deeds which the authors are ashamed of having brought to light :
" Actions rare and sudden do conrmonly Proceed from fierce necessity; or else From some oblique design which is asham'd To shew itself in the public road." This joyful occasion, as the tenants vainly imagined it would have been, drew from them a congratulatory address to the Squire, couched in the most affectionate and respectful terms. When it was presented to the Squire, he declined receiving it in the usual form on such public occasions. The tenants, as may be well