« ForrigeFortsett »
ed of every quality which procures vene- bet, which consists only of two-andration, love, and esteem; of strong parts, twenty. But indeed few of them extend great wisdom, and profound learning, en- even to that length. They are expressed dowed with admirable talents for govern. in the most plain and simple terms, ment, and almost adored by his subjects, wherein those people are not mercurial should, from a nice unnecessary scruple, enough to discover above one interpretawhereof in Europe we can have no con. tion; and to write a comment upon any ception, let slip an opportunity put into law is a capital crime.' As to the decihis hands, that would have made him sion of civil causes, or proceedings against absolute master of the lives, the liberties, criminals, their precedents are so few, and the fortunes of his people. Neither that they have little reason to boast of do I say this with the least intention to any extraordinary skill in either. detract from the many virtues of that ex- They have had the art of printing, as cellent king, whose character I am sen- well as the Chinese, time out of mind; sible will on this account be very much but their libraries are not very large ; for lessened in the opinion of an English
that of the king, which is reckoned the largreader; but I take this defect among est, doth not amount to above a thousand them to have risen from their ignorance, volumes, placed in a gallery of twelve by not having hitherto reduced politics hundred feet long, from whence I had liinto a science, as the more acute wits of berty to borrow what books I pleased. Europe have done. For I remember The queen's joiner had contrived in one of very well in a discourse one day with the Glumdalclitch's rooms a kind of wooden king, when I happened to say there were machine, five-and-twenty feet high, formed several thousand books among us written like a standing ladder, the steps were each upon the art of government, it gave him fifty feet long: it was indeed a moveable (directly contrary to my intention) a very pair of stairs, the lowest end placed at ten mcan opinion of our understandings. He feet distance from the wall of the champrosessed both to abominate and despise
ber. The book I had a mind to read was all mystery, refinement, and intrigue, put up leaning against the wall; I first either in a prince or a minister. Ile mounted to the upper step of the ladder, could not tell what I meant by secrets of and turned my face towards the book, state, where an enemy, or some rival na- began at the top of the page, and so tion, were not in the case. He confined walking to the right and left about eight the knowledge of governing within very or ten paces according to the length of narrow bounds, to common sense and
the lines, till I had gotten a little below reason, to justice and lenity, to the speedy the level of mine eye, and then descenddetermination of civil and criminal causes; ing gradually till I came to the bottom; with some other obvious topics which are
after which I mounted again, and began not worth considering. And he gave it the other page in the same manner, and for his opinion, that whoever could make so turned over the leaf, which I could two ears of corn, or two blades of grass, easily do with both my hands, for it was to grow upon a spot of ground where as thick and stiff as pasteboard, and in ouly one grew before, would deserve bet- the largest folios not above eighteen or ter of mankind, and do more essential ser. twenty feet long. vice to his country, than the whole race Their style is clear, masculine, and of politicians put together.
smooth, but not florid; for they avoid 10The learning of this people is very de- thing more than multiplying unnecessary fective, consisting ouly in morality, his words, or using various expressions. I have tory, poetry, and mathematics, wherein perused many of their books, especially they must be allowed to excel. But the those in history and morality. Among the last of these is wholly applied to what may rest, I was very much diverted with a little be useful in life, to the improvement of old treatise, which always lay in Glumdalagriculture and all mechanical arts; so clitch’s bed-chamber, and belonged to her that among us it would be little esteemed. governess, a grave elderly gentlewoman, And as to ideas, entities, abstractions, and who dealt in writings of morality and des transcendentals, I could never drive the votion. The book treats of the weakness least conception into their heads.
of human kind, and is in little esteem, exNo law of that country must exceed in cept among the women and the vulgar. words the number of letters in their alpha. However, I was curious to see what an author of that country could say upon such good discipline, wherein I saw no great a subject. This writer went through all merit: for how should it be otherwise, the usual topics of European moralists, where every farmer is under the com. shewing how diminutive, contemptible, mand of his own landlord, and every citiand helpless an animal was man in hiszen under that of the principal men in bis own nature; how unable to defend him. own city, chosen after the manner of Veself from inclemencies of the air, or nice by ballot ? the fury of wild beasts; how much he I have often seen the militia of Lor. was excelled by one creature in strength, brulgrud drawn out to exercise in a great by another in speed, by a third in fore- field near the city of twenty miles square, sight, by a fourth in industry. He added, They were in all not above twenty-five that nature was degenerated in these thousand foot, and six thousand horse; latter declining ages of the world, and but it was impossible for me to compute could now produce only small abortive their number considering the space of births, in comparison of those in ancient ground they took up. A cavalier, mounts times. Ile said it was very reasonable ed on a large steed, might be about to think, not only that the species of man ninety feet high. I have seen this whole were originally much larger, but also that body of horse, upon a word of command, there must have been giants in former draw their swords at once, and brandish ages; which, as it is asserted by history them in the air. Imagination can figure and tradition, so it hath been confirmed nothing so grand, so surprising, and so by huge bones and skulls casually dug astonishing ! it looked as if ten thousand up in several parts of the kingdom, far flashes of lightuing were darting at the exceeding the common dwindled race of same time from every quarter of the sky. man in our days. He argued, that the I was curious to know how this prince very laws of nature absolutely required to whose dominions there is no access we should have been made in the begin- from any other country, came to think of ning of a size more large and robust, not armies, or to teach his people the practica so liable to destruction from every little of military discipline." But I was soon accident of a tile falling from an house, informed, both by conversation and read, or a stone cast from the hand of a boy, or ing their histories; for in the course of being drowned in a little brook. I'rom many ages they have been troubled with this way of reasoning, the author drew the same disease to which the whole race several moral applications useful in the of mankind is subject; the nobility often conduct of life, but needless here to re- contending for power, the people for li: peat. For my own part, I could not berty, and the king for absolute domiavoid reflecting how universally this ta- nion. All which, however happily temlent was spread, of drawing lectures in pered by the laws of that kingdom, hare morality, or indeed rather matter of dis- been sometimes violated by cach of the content and repining, from the quarrels three parties, and have more than once we raise with nature. And, I believe, occasioned civil wars, the last whereof upon a strict enquiry, those quarrels was happily put an end to by this prince's might be shewn as ill grounded among us, grandfather in a general composition; as they are among that people*.
and the militia, then settled with common As to their military affairs, they boast consent, hath been ever since kept in the that the king's army consists of an hun. strictest duty. dred and seventy-six thousand foot, and thirty-two thousand horse : if that may
CHAP. VIII. be called an army, which is made up of The king and queen make a progress to tradesmen in the several cities, and far- the frontiers. The author attends thert, mers in the country, whose commanders The manner in which he leaves the coure are only the nobility and gentry without try very particularly related. Here pay or reward. They are indeed perfect turns to England. enough in their exercises, and under very Į had always a strong impulse, that I * The author's zeal to justify Providence has should some time recover my liberty
, before been remarked ; and these quarrels with though it was impossible to conjecture by nature, or in other words with God, could not what means, or form any project with the have been more forcibly proved than by shewing least hope of succeeding. The ship in which would be equally specious among beings of such I sailed was the first ever known to be driastonishing superiority of stature and strength. ven within sight of that coast, and the king
had given strict orders, that, if at any whom I was very fond of, and who had time another appeared, it should be taken sometimes been trusted with me. I shall ashore, and with all its crew and passen- never forget
never forget with what unwillingness gers brought in a tumbril, to Lorbrulgrud. Glumdalclitch consented, nor the strict He was strongly bent to get me a woman charge she gave the page to be careful of of my own size, by whom I might propa. me, bursting at the same time into a flood gate the breed: but I think I should rather of tears, as if she had some foreboding of have died, than undergone the disgrace what was to happen. The boy took me of leaving a posterity to be kept in cages out in my box about half an hour's walk like tame canary-birds, and perhaps in from the palace towards the rocks on the time sold about the kingdom to persons of sea-shore. I ordered him to set me down. quality for curiosities. I was indeed treat and lifting up one of my sashes, cast many ed with much kindness : I was the favour. a wistful melancholy look towards the sea. ite of a great king and queen, and delight I found myself not very well, and told the of the whole court; but it was upon such page that I had a mind to take a nap in a foot as ill became the dignity of human my hammock, which I hoped would do kind. I could never forget those domes- me good. I got in, and the boy shut the tic pledges I had left behind me. I window close down to keep out the cold. wanted to be among people with whom I soon fell a sleep, and all I can conjecture I could converse upon even terms, and is, that while I slept, the page, thinking and walk about the streets and fields, no danger could happen, went among the without being afraid of being trod to death rocks to look for bird's eggs, having before like a frog, or young puppy. But my observed him from my.window searching deliverance came sooner than I expected, about, and picking upone or two in the and in a manner not very common : the clefts. Be that as it will, I found myself whole story and circumstances of which suddenly awaked with a violent pull upon I shall faithfully relate.
the ring, which was fastened at the top of I had now been two years in this coun. my box for the conveniency of carriage. try; and about the beginning of the third I felt my box raised very high in the air, Glumdalclitch and I attended the king and and then borne forward with prodigious queen in a progress to the south coast of speed. The first jolt had like to have the kingdom. I was carried as usual in shaken me out of my hammock, but after my travelling box, which as I have al- wards the motion was easy enough. I ready described, was a very convenient called out several times as loud as I could closet of twelve feet wide. And I had or- raise my voice, but all to no purpose. I dered a hammock to be fixed with silken looked towards my windows, and could ropes from the four corners at the top, to sce nothing but the clouds and sky. I break the jolts, when a servant
heard a noise just over my head like the before him on horseback, as I sometimes clapping of wings, and then began to condesired, and would often sleep in my ham- ceive the woeful condition I was in, that mock while we were upon the road. On some eagle had got the ring of my box in the roof of my closet, not directly over the his beak, with an intent to let it fall on a middle of the hammock, I ordered the rock like a tortoise in a shell, and then joiner to cut out a hole of a foot square, pick out my body and devour it; for tho to give me air in hot weather, as 1 slept; sagacity and smell of this bird enabled which hole I shut at pleasure with a him to discover his quarry at a great disboard that drew backwards and forwards tance, though better concealed than I through a groove.
could be within a two-inch board. When we came to our journey's end, In a little time I observed the noise and the king thought proper to pass a few days flutter of wings to increase very fast, and at a palace he hath near Flanflasnic, a city my box was tossed up and down like a sign within eighteen English miles of the sea- in a windy day. I heard several bangs or side. Glumdalclitch and I were much fa- buffets, as I thought, given to the eagle tigued ; I had gotten a small cold, but the (for such I am certain it must have been poor girl was so ill as to be confined to her that held the ring of my box in his beak), chamber. I longed to see the ocean which and then all on asudden felt myself falling must be the only scene of my escape, if perpendicularly down for aboye a minute, over it should happen. 1 pretended to be but with such incredible swiftness that I worse than I really was, and desired leave almost lost my breath. My fall was stopto take the fresh air of the sea with a paye ped with a terriblc squash, that sounded louder to my cars than the cataract of which otherwise I certainly should bare Niagara* ; after which I was quite in the done, and sat on the top of it, where ! dark for another minute, and then my box might at least prescrve myself some hours began to rise so high that I could see light longer than by being shut up (as I may from the tops of the windows. I now call it) in the hold. Or if I escaped these perceived that I was fallen in the sea. dangers for a day or two, what could I
My box, by the weight of my body the expect but a miserable death of cold and goods that were in it, and the broad plates hunger? I was four hours under these of iron fixed for strength at the four cor- circumstances, expecting, and indeed ners of the top and bottom, floated about wishing, every moment to be my last. five feet deep in water. I did then, and do I have already told the reader that now suppose, that the eagle which flew there were two strong staples fixed upon away with my box was pursued by two or that side of my box which had no winthree others, and forced to let me drop dow, and into which the servant who used while he defended himself against the rest to carry me on horse back would put a who hoped to share in the prey. The plates leathern belt, and buckle it about his of iron fastened at the bottom of the box waist. Being in this disconsolate state, I (for those were the strongest) preserved heard, or at least thought I heard, some the balancé while it fell, and hindered it kind of grating noise on that side of my from being broken on the surface of the box where the staples where fixed, and soon water. Every joint of it was well grooved after I began to fancy, that the box was and the door did not move on hinges, but pulled or towed along in the sea; for I up and down like a sash, which kept my now and then felt a sort of tugging, closet so tight that very little water came which made the waves rise near the tops in. I got with much difficulty out of my of my windows, leaving me almost in the hammock, having first ventured to draw dark. This gave me some faint hopes of back the slip-board on the roof already relief; although I was not able to imagine mentioned, contrived on purpose to let in how it could be brought about. I venair, for want of which I found myself al- tured to unscrew one of my chairs, which most stifled.
were always fastened to the floor; and How often did I then wish myself with having made a bard shift 10 screw it down my dear Glumdalcliteli, from whom one again directly under the slipping-board single hour had so far divided me! And tliat I had lately opened, I mounted on I may say with truth, that in the midst of the chair, and putting my mouth as near iny own mistortunes I could not forbear as I could to the hole, I called for help lamenting my poor nurse, the grief she in a loud voice, and in all the languages would suffer for my loss, the displeasure I understood. I then fastened my handof the queen, and the ruin of her fortune. kerchief to a stick I usually carried, and Perhaps many travellers have not been thrusting it up the hole, waved it several under greater difficulties and distress than times in the air, that if any boat or ship I was at this juncture, expecting every were near, the seamen might conjecture moment to see my box dashed to pieces, some unhappy mortal to be shiut up in or at least overset by the first violent blast the box. or rising wave. A breach in one single I found no effect from all I could do, pane of glass would have been immediate but plainly perceived my closet to be death : nor could any thing have pre- moved along; and in the space of an hour served the windows but the strong lattice or better, that side of the box where the wires placed on the outside against acci- staples were, and had no window, struck dents in travelling. I saw the water ooze against something that was hard. I apin at several crannies, although the leaks prchended it to be a rock, and found my. were not considerable, and I endeavoured self tossed more than ever. I plainly heard to stop them as well as I could. I was a noise upon the cover of my closet like that not able to lift up the roof of my closet, of a cable, and the grating of it as it passe
ed through the ring. I then found myself * Niagara is a settlement of the French in hoisted up by degrees at least three feet North America, and the cataract is produced by bigher than I was before. Whereupon ! the fall of a conflux of water (formed of the four again thrust up my stick and handkerchief vast lakes of Canada) from a rocky precipice; calling for help till I was almost hoarse. and thirty-seven feet; and it is said to have In return to which, I heard a great shout been heard fifteen leagues.
repeated three times giving me sucb transports of joy as are not to be conceived one of the crew bring my closet into his but by those who feel them. I now heard cabin, I would open it there before him a trampling over my head, and somebody and shew him my goods. The captain calling through the hole with a loud hearing me utter these absurdities, convoice in the English tongue, If there be cluded I was raving: however (I suppose any borly below, let them speak. I an- to pacify me, he promised to give order swered, I was an Englishman, drawn by as I desired and going upon deck, sent ill fortune into the greatest calamity that some of his men down into my closet, ever any creature underwent, and begged from whence (as I afterwards found) they by all that was moving to be delivered drew up all my goods, and stripped off the out of the dungeon I was in. The voice quilting; but the chairs cabinet and bedsreplied, I was safe, for my box was fas- tead, being screwed to the floor, were tened to their ship; and the carpenter much damaged by the ignorance of the should immediately come and saw a hole seamen, who tore them up by force.-in the cover large enough to pull me out. Then they knocked off some of the boards I answered, that was needless, and would for the use of the ship, and when they bad take up too much time, for there was no got all they had a mind for, let the hull more to be done, but let one of his crew drop into the sea, which by reason of put his finger into the ring, and take many breaches made in the bottom and the box out of the sea into the ship, and sides, sunk to rights. And indeed I was so into the captain's cabin*. Some of glad not to have been a spectator of the them upon hearing me talk so wildly havock they made; because I am confident thought I was mad; others laughed; it would have sensibly touched me, by for indeed it never came into my head bringing former passages into my mind, that I was now got among people of my which I had rather forget. own stature and strength. The carpen- I slept some hours, but perpetually ter came, and in a few minutes sawed a disturbed with dreams of the place I hail passage about four fect square, then let left and the dangers I had escaped. down a small ladder, upon which I However, upon waking I found myself mounted, and from thence was taken much recovered. It was now about eight into the ship in a very weak condition. o'clock at night, and the captain ordered · The sailors were all in amazement, and supper immediately, thinking I had alasked me a thousand questions, which I ready fasted too long. He entertained had no inclination to answer.
me with great kindness, observing me not epually confounded at the sight of so to look wildly, or talk inconsistently; many pigmics, for such I took them to and, when we were left alone, desired i be, after having so long accustomed my would give him a relation of my travels, eyes to the monstrous objects I had left. and by what accident I came to be set But the captain, Mr. Thomas Wilcocks, adrift in that monstrous wooden chest. an honest worthy Shropshireman, ob- He said, that about twelve o'clock at serving I was ready to faint, took mc noon, as he was looking through his glass, into his cabin, gave me a cordial to com- he spied it at a distance, and thought fort me, and made me turn in upon his it was a sail, which he had a mind" to own bed, advising me to take a little rest, make being not much out of his course of which I had great need. Before I in hopes of buying some biscuit, his went to sleep, I gave him to understand own beginning to fall short. That upon that I had some valuable furniture in my coming nearer, and finding his error, box too good to be lost; a fine hammock; he sent out his long boat to discover an handsome field-bed, two chairs, a what I was ; that his men came back table, and a cabinet. That my closet, in a fright, swearing they had seen a was hung on all sides, or rather quilted, swimming house. That he laughed at with silk and cotton: that if he would let their folly, and went himself in the boat,
ordering his men to take a strong cable *There are several little incidents which sbew along with them. That the weather the author to have had a deep knowledge of being calm, he rowed round me several human nature ; and I think this is one. Although times, observed my windows, and the the principal advantages enumerated by Gulliver ju the beginning of this chapter, of mingling again wire lattices that defended them. That among his countrymen, depended on their being of he discovered two staples upon one side, the same size with himself, yet this is forgotten in which was all of boards without any his ardour to be delivered ; and he is afterwards betrayed into the same absurdity, by his zeal to
passage for light. He then commanded preserve his furniture,
bis men to row up to that side, and fasten