[ 60 ]

league farther, to think of getting into
Strasburg this night -- Strasburg ! -- the
great Strasburg ! -- Strasburg , the capital
of all Alsatia ! Strasburg , an imperial
city ! Strasburg , a sovereign state ! Stras-
, garrisoned with five thousand of
the best troops in all the world ! -- Alas !
if I was at the gates of Strasburg this
moment, I could not gain admittance into
it for a ducat, -- nay a ducat and half --
'tis too much -- better go back to the last
inn I have passed -- than lie I know not
where -- or give I know not what. The
traveller, as he made these reflections in
his mind, turned his horse's head about,
and three minutes after the stranger had
been conducted into his chamber, he ar-
rived at the same inn.

   -- We have bacon in the house, said
the host, and bread ---- and till eleven
o'clock this night had three eggs in it --

[ 61 ]

but a stranger, who arrived an hour ago,
has had them dressed into an omelet, and
we have nothing. ------

   -- Alas ! said the traveller, harrassed
as I am, I want nothing but a bed -- I
have one as soft as is in Alsatia, said the

   -- The stranger, continued he, should
have slept in it, for 'tis my best bed, but
upon the score of his nose -- He has got
a defluxion, said the traveller -- Not that
I know, cried the host -- But 'tis a camp-
bed, and Jacinta, said he, looking to-
wards the maid, imagined there was not
room in it to turn his nose in -- Why so ?
cried the traveller starting back -- It is so
long a nose, replied the host -- The tra-
veller fixed his eyes upon Jacinta, then
upon the ground -- kneeled upon his right

[ 62 ]

knee -- had just got his hand laid upon
his breast -- Trifle not with my anxiety,
said he, rising up again -- 'Tis no trifle,
said Jacinta 'tis the most glorious nose !
-- The traveller fell upon his knee again --
laid his hand upon his breast -- then said he,
looking up to heaven ! thou hast con-
ducted me to the end of my pilgrimage
---- 'Tis Diego !

  The traveller was the brother of the
Julia, so often invoked that night by the
stranger as he rode from Strasburg upon
his mule ; and was come, on her part,
in quest of him. He had accompanied
his sister from Valadolid across the Pyre-
mountains thro' France, and had
many an entangled skein to wind off in
pursuit of him thro' the many meanders
and abrupt turnings of a lover's thorny
                          -- Julia

[ 63 ]

   -- Julia had sunk under it -- and had
not been able to go a step farther than to
Lyons, where, with the many disquietudes
of a tender heart, which all talk of -- but
few feel -- she sicken'd, but had just
strength to write a letter to Diego ; and
having conjured her brother never to see
her face till he had found him out, and
put the letter into his hands, Julia took
to her bed.

  Fernandez (for that was her brother's
name) -- tho' the camp-bed was as soft as
any one in Alsace, yet he could not shut
his eyes in it. -- As soon as it was day he
rose, and hearing Diego was risen too,
he enter'd his chamber, and discharged
his sister's commission.

  The letter was as follows :

[ 64 ]

     Seig. DIEGO.
   `` Whether my suspicions of your nose
`` were justly excited or not -- 'tis not now
`` to inquire -- it is enough I have not
`` had firmness to put them to farther
`` tryal.

   `` How could I know so little of my-
`` self, when I sent my Duena to forbid
`` your coming more under my lattice ?
`` or how could I know so little of you,
`` Diego, as to imagine you would not
`` have staid one day in Valadolid to have
`` given ease to my doubts ? -- Was I to
`` be abandoned, Diego, because I was
`` deceived ? or was it kind to take me
`` at my word, whether my suspicions
`` were just or no, and leave me, as you
`` did, a prey to much uncertainty and
`` sorrow.
                          `` In

[ 65 ]

  `` In what manner Julia has resented
`` this -- my brother, when he puts this
`` letter into your hands, will tell you :
`` He will tell you in how few moments
`` she repented of the rash message she
`` had sent you -- in what frantic haste
`` she flew to her lattice, and how many
`` days and nights together she leaned
`` immoveably upon her elbow, looking
`` thro' it towards the way which Diego
`` was wont to come.

   `` He will tell you, when she heard
`` of your departure -- how her spirits de-
`` serted her -- how her heart sicken'd --
`` how piteously she mourn'd -- how low
`` she hung her head. O Diego ! how
`` many weary steps has my brother's
`` pity led me by the hand languishing
`` to trace out yours ! how far has desire
`` carried me beyond strength -- and how
  VOL.        F            `` oft

[ 66 ]

`` oft have I fainted by the way, and
`` sunk into his arms, with only power
`` to cry out -- 0 my Diego !

  `` If the gentleness of your carriage
`` has not belied your heart, you will fly
`` to me, almost as fast as you fled from
`` me -- haste as you will, you will arrive
`` but to see me expire. -- 'Tis a bitter
`` draught, Diego, but oh ! 'tis embitter'd
`` still more by dying un----.''

  She could proceed no farther.

  Slawkenbergius supposes the word in-
tended was unconvinced, but her strength
would not enable her to finish her letter.

  The heart of the courteous Diego
overflowed as he read the letter -- he or-
dered his mule forthwith and Fernandez's

[ 67 ]

horse to be saddled ; and as no vent in
prose is equal to that of poetry in such
conflicts -- chance, which as often directs
us to remedies as to diseases, having
thrown a piece of charcoal into the win-
dow -- Diego availed himself of it, and
whilst the ostler was getting ready his
mule, he eased his mind against the wall
as follows.

O D E.

  Harsh and untuneful are the notes of love,
     Unless my Julia strikes the key,
  Her hand alone can touch the part,
     Whose dulcet move-
  -ment charms the heart,
     And governs all the man with sympa-
       thetic sway

    O Julia !
             F 2              The

[ 68 ]

  The lines were very natural -- for they
were nothing at all to the purpose, says
Slawkenbergius, and 'tis a pity there were
no more of them ; but whether it was
that Seig. Diego was slow in composing
verses -- or the ostler quick in saddling
mules -- is not averred ; certain it was,
that Diego's mule and Fernandez's horse
were ready at the door of the inn, before
Diego was ready for his second stanza ;
so without staying to finish his ode, they
both mounted, sallied forth, passed the
Rhine, traversed Alsace, shaped their
course towards Lyons, and before the
Strasburgers and the abbess of Quedlinberg
had set out on their cavalcade, had Fer-
, Diego, and his Julia, crossed
the Pyrenean mountains, and got safe to


[ 69 ]

  'Tis needless to inform the geographi-
cal reader, that when Diego was in Spain,
it was not possible to meet the courteous
stranger in the Frankfort road ; it is
enough to say, that of all restless desires,
curiosity being the strongest -- the Stras-
felt the full force of it ; and that
for three days and nights they were tossed
to and fro in the Frankfort road, with
the tempestuous fury of this passion, be-
fore they could submit to return home --
When alas ! an event was prepared for
them, of all others the most grievous
that could befal a free people.

  As this revolution of the Strasburgers
affairs is often spoken of, and little un-
derstood, I will, in ten words, says Slaw-
, give the world an explanation
of it, and with it put an end to my
             F 3              Every

[ 70 ]

  Every body knows of the grand sy-
stem of Universal Monarchy, wrote by
order of Mons. Colbert, and put in ma-
nuscript into the hands of Lewis the
fourteenth, in the year 1664.

  'Tis as well known, that one branch
out of many of that system, was the
getting possession of Strasburg, to favour
an entrance at all times into Suabia, in
order to disturb the quiet of Germany --
and that in consequence of this plan,
Strasburg unhappily fell at length into
their hands.

  It is the lot of few to trace out the
true springs of this and such like revolu-
tions -- The vulgar look too high for
them -- Statesmen look too low -- Truth
(for once) lies in the middle.

[ 71 ]

  What a fatal thing is the popular pride
of a free city ! cries one historian -- The
Strasburgers deemed it a diminution of
their freedom to receive an imperial gar-
rison -- and so fell a prey to a French one.

  The fate, says another, of the Stras-
, may be a warning to all free
people to save their money -- They anti-
cipated their revenues -- brought them-
selves under taxes, exhausted their
strength, and in the end became so weak
a people, they had not strength to keep
their gates shut, and so the French pushed
them open.

  Alas ! alas ! cries Slawkenbergius, 'twas
not the French -- 'twas CURIOSITY pushed
them open -- The French indeed, who are
ever upon the catch, when they saw the
Strasburgers, men, women, and children,
             F 4              all

[ 72 ]

all marched out to follow the stranger's
nose -- each man followed his own, and
marched in.

  Trade and manufactures have decayed
and gradually grown down ever since --
but not from any cause which commer-
cial heads have assigned ; for it is owing
to this only, that Noses have ever so run
in their heads, that the Strasburgers could
not follow their business.

  Alas ! alas ! cries Slawkenbergius, mak-
ing an exclamation -- it is not the first --
and I fear will not be the last fortress
that has been either won ---- or lost by

The E N D of
Slawkenbergius's TALE.

                          C H A P.

[ 73 ]

C H A P. I.

WITH all this learning upon Noses
running perpetually in my fa-
ther's fancy -- with so many family preju-
dices -- and ten decads of such tales run-
ning on for ever along with them -- how
was it possible with such exquisite -- was
it a true nose ? -- That a man with such
exquisite feelings as my father had, could
bear the shock at all below stairs -- or in-
deed above stairs, in any other posture,
but the very posture I have described.

   -- Throw yourself down upon the bed,
a dozen times -- taking care only to place
a looking-glass first in a chair on one side
of it, before you do it ---- But was the

[ 74 ]

stranger's nose a true nose -- or was it a
false one ?

  To tell that before-hand, madam,
would be to do injury to one of the best
tales in the christian world ; and that is
the tenth of the tenth decad which imme-
diately follows this.

  This tale, crieth Slawkenbergius some-
what exultingly, has been reserved by
me for the concluding tale of my whole
work ; knowing right well, that when I
shall have told it, and my reader shall
have read it thro' -- 'twould be even high
time for both of us to shut up the book ;
inasmuch, continues Slawkenbergius, as I
know of no tale which could possibly
ever go down after it.

   -- 'Tis a tale indeed !

[ 75 ]

  This sets out with the first interview
in the inn at Lyons, when Fernandez left
the courteous stranger and his sister Julia
alone in her chamber, and is overwritten,

The I N T R I C A C I E S
Diego and Julia.

  Heavens ! thou art a strange creature
Slawkenbergius ! what a whimsical view
of the involutions of the heart of woman
hast thou opened ! how this can ever be
translated, and yet if this specimen of
Slawkenbergius's tales, and the exquisi-
tiveness of his moral should please the
world -- translated shall a couple of vo-
lumes be. -- Else, how this can ever be
translated into good English, I have no
sort of conception. -- There seems in some
passages to want a sixth sense to do it

[ 76 ]

rightly. ---- What can he mean by the
lambent pupilability of slow, low, dry
chat, five notes below the natural tone,
-- which you know, madam, is little
more than a whisper ? The moment I
pronounced the words, I could perceive
an attempt towards a vibration in the
strings, about the region of the heart. --
The brain made no acknowledgment. --
There's often no good understanding
betwixt 'em. -- I felt as if I understood
it. --- I had no ideas. -- The movement
could not be without cause. -- I'm lost.
I can make nothing of it, -- unless, may
it please your worships, the voice, in
that case being little more than a whis-
per, unavoidably forces the eyes to
approach not only within six inches
of each other -- but to look into the
pupils -- is not that dangerous ? -- But it
can't be avoided -- for to look up to the

[ 77 ]

cieling, in that case the two chins un-
avoidably meet -- and to look down into
each others laps, the foreheads come into
immediate contact, which at once puts
an end to the conference -- I mean to the
sentimental part of it. ---- What is left,
madam, is not worth stooping for.

C H A P. II.

MY father lay stretched across the
bed as still as if the hand of death
had pushed him down, for a full hour
and a half, before he began to play upon
the floor with the toe of that foot which
hung over the bed-side ; my uncle Toby's
heart was a pound lighter for it. -- In a
few moments, his left-hand, the knuckles
of which had all the time reclined upon
the handle of the chamber-pot, came
to its feeling -- he thrust it a little more

[ 78 ]

within the valance -- drew up his hand,
when he had done, into his bosom -- gave
a hem ! -- My good uncle Toby, with infi-
nite pleasure, answered it ; and full gladly
would have ingrafted a sentence of conso-
lation upon the opening it afforded ; but
having no talents, as I said, that way,
and fearing moreover that he might set
out with something which might make a
bad matter worse, he contented himself
with resting his chin placidly upon the
cross of his crutch.

  Now whether the compression shortened
my uncle Toby's face into a more plea-
sureable oval, -- or that the philanthropy
of his heart, in seeing his brother begin-
ning to emerge out of the sea of his af-
flictions, had braced up his muscles, --
so that the compression upon his chin
only doubled the benignity which was

[ 79 ]

there before, is not hard to decide. -- My
father, in turning his eyes, was struck
with such a gleam of sun-shine in his
face, as melted down the sullenness of
his grief in a moment.

  He broke silence as follows.


DID ever man, brother Toby, cried
my father, raising himself up upon
his elbow, and turning himself round to
the opposite side of the bed where my
uncle Toby was sitting in his old fringed
chair, with his chin resting upon his
crutch -- did ever a poor unfortunate man,
brother Toby, cried my father, receive so
many lashes ? --- The most I ever saw
given, quoth my uncle Toby, (ringing
             1              the