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As to the murderous walking-sticks, which
thrust out upon you their swords, or dirks,
or spring spears, we like them not: their use
is only to be tolerated in private gentlemen
and editors, who do not feel comfortable in
the streets of California or Kentucky without
a Colt's revolver peeping out of their pockets
loaded to the muzzle and on full cock.


BAD deeds seldom prosper, happily for
mankind; and the English cause gained no
advantage from the cruel death of Joan of
Arc. For a long time, the war went heavily
on. The Duke of Bedford died; the alliance
with the Duke of Burgundy was broken; and
Lord Talbot became a great general on the
English side in France. But, two of the
consequences of wars are, Faminebecause the
people cannot peacefully cultivate the ground
and grow cropsand Pestilence, which comes
of want, misery, and suffering. Both these
horrors broke out in both countries, and
lasted for two wretched years. Then, the war
went on again, and came, by slow degrees, to
be so badly conducted by the English
government, that, within twenty years from the
execution of the Maid of Orleans; of all the
great French conquests, the town of Calais
alone remained in English hands.

While these victories and defeats were
taking place in the course of time, many
strange things happened at home. The young
king, as he grew up, proved to be very unlike
his great father, and showed himself a
miserable puny creature. There was no harm in
himhe had a great aversion to shedding
blood: which was somethingbut, he was a
weak, silly, helpless young man, and a mere
shuttlecock to the great lordly battledores
about the Court. Of these battledores,
Cardinal Beaufort a relation of the King, and
the Duke of Gloucester, were at first the
most powerful. The Duke of Gloucester had
a wife, who was nonsensically accused of
practising witchcraft to cause the King's
death and lead to her husband's coming to
the throne, he being the next heir. She was
charged with having, by the help of a
ridiculous old woman named Margery (who
was called a witch), made a little waxen doll
in the King's likeness, and put it before a
slow fire that it might gradually melt away.
It was supposed, in such cases, that the death
of the person whom the doll was made to
represent, was sure to happen. Whether the
duchess was as ignorant as the rest of them,
and really did make such a doll with such an
intention, I don't know; but, you and I
know very well that she might have made a
thousand dolls, if she had been stupid enough,
and might have melted them all, without
hurting the King or anybody else. However,
she was tried for it, and so was old Margery,
and so was one of the duke's chaplains, who
was charged with having assisted them. Both
he and Margery were put to death, and the
duchess, after being taken, on foot and bearing
a lighted candle, three times round the City
as a penance, was imprisoned for life. The
duke, himself, took all this pretty quietly,
and made as little stir about the matter as if
he were rather glad to be rid of the duchess.

But, he was not destined to keep himself
out of trouble long. The royal shuttlecock
being three-and-twenty, the battledores were
very anxious to get him married. The Duke
of Gloucester wanted him to marry a daughter
of the Count of Armagnac; but, the Cardinal
and the Earl of Suffolk were all for
MARGARET, the daughter of the King of
Sicily, who they knew was a resolute
ambitious woman and would govern the King
as she chose. To make friends with this lady,
the Earl of Suffolk, who went over to arrange
the match, consented to accept her for the
King's wife without any fortune, and even to
give up the two most valuable possessions
England then had in France. So, the marriage
was arranged, on terms very advantageous to
the lady; and Lord Suffolk brought her to
England, and she was married at Westminster.
On what pretence this queen and
her party charged the Duke of Gloucester
with high treason within a couple of years, it
is impossible to make out, the matter is so
confused; but, they pretended that the King's
life was in danger, and they took the duke
prisoner. A fortnight afterwards, he was
found dead in bed (they said), and his body
was shown to the people, and Lord Suffolk
came in for the best part of his estates. You
know by this time how strangely liable state
prisoners were to sudden death.

If Cardinal Beaufort had any hand in this
matter, it did him no good, for he died
within six weeks; thinking it very hard and
curiousat eighty years old!—that he could
not live to be Pope.

This was the time when England had
completed her loss of all her great French
conquests. The people charged the loss
principally upon the Earl of Suffolk, now a duke,
who had made those easy terms about the
Royal marriage, and who, they believed, had
even been bought by France. So he was
impeached as a traitor, on a great number of
charges, but chiefly on accusations of having
aided the French king, and of designing to
make his own son King of England. The
Commons and the people being violent against
him, the King was made (by his friends) to
interpose to save him, by banishing him for
five years, and proroguing the Parliament.
The duke had much ado to escape from a
London mob, two thousand strong, who lay
in wait for him in St. Giles's Fields; but, he
got down to his own estates in Suffolk, and
sailed away from Ipswich. Sailing across the
Channel, he sent into Calais to know if he
might land there; but, they kept his boat
and men in the harbour, until an English