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against all that is most sacred in the rural
districts of England, we have only to add,
that he did this audaciously, publicly, in the
face of his neighbours; that there was even
no concealment of it from the nearest minister
of game, who as a keeper of their holy temple
the preservescame an the same night
and sat, like a game bird himself, perched on
a tree all the night long directly over the
said snare. So, when the black-hearted
wretch came to the spot at about six in the
morning to find his snare empty, the reverend
minister of game leaped down on him and
collared him, and dragged him off as a
prisoner to Mantrap Court.

As is the way with all great rogues, Tom
invoked loudly the aid of the law; declared
that his arrest without a summons was
illegal, and defied Sir Pitiless to punish him.

"I have a good mind to commit you," said
Sir Pitiless, and let him go.

O, what a good man was Sir Pitiless to be
merciful to a vile boy! He was so kind as
to see that when he could not strike this
wicked Tom in front without much noise and
trouble, to put him out of his pain, or into
that destruction which is the reward of boys
like him, it was better to stab him in the
back. Now, as it was the pride of Tom to
prefer his father's substance to the well-being
even of a rabbit, here, in this pride, was the
very handle for the dagger. Thus wrote the
right honourable gentleman to the post-master-general:

MY LORD, I beg to call your lordship's attention
to the case of the postman between Dash and Asterisk.
He occupies a house in the midst of my game
preserves, on which his sons, who are desperate poachers,
are continually making depredations. He, however,
pays their fines when convicted, and encourages them
in their unlawful proceedings. I, therefore, have to
request that you will deprive this man of his office, and
appoint a more respectable character in his place.
I have, &c. &c.,


Now, instead of taking the word of a
baronet, and quietly depriving the gaunt postman of
his office, his lordship the postmaster-general
must needs violate the confidence and secrecy
implied always by the mover in this sort of
transaction; for what does he do? He
transmits the letter of Sir Pitiless the baronet
to Matthew the mere postman, and asks him
him!— for his answer to the charge
contained in it. What is the destiny of a
country when a member of its government
is to be found asking a fellow like thata
member of the vulgar classto reply to
what a gentleman has said?  Who is he
that he should have an answer on his lips?

Matthew, impertinent, as all low people
are, behaved as might have been expected.
He took the letter, in a great fright, to the
clergyman of the parish, who knew all about
the matter, as seen from his own conventional
and narrow point of view. Matthew had
been a parishioner of his for twenty years, and
for that reason he had the audacity to think
himself called upon to certify to the
post-master-general that Matthew's sons had
never once been fined, were by no means
poachers, and had never been accused of
poaching save in the one recent instance;
finally, that he himself knew the
respectability of Matthew's family to have been
kept unspotted for twenty years. Desiring
to support himself in this wrong cause of
opposition to the wishes of a noble baronet,
whose only design had been to make a
rascal feel what it was to grumble at the
condescension of his game, this clergyman
referred to other clergymen and gentlemen
of the vicinity for a corroboration of his
testimony. It is hardly necessary to add that
the profligate government official took
advantage of this testimony as a ground of
refusal to the application of Sir Pitiless.
Of what use is it to have a stake or
pheasant in the country, if this is the attention
one gets upon application even for the smallest

Surely, however, there are more ways than
one of ruining a postman. Sir Pitiless applied
to Matthew's landlord, and desired to buy
the little farm the caitiff occupied. Once
become Matthew's landlord, he could, not
only turn him out, but keep him out. The
landlord, of the same gang, it would seem,
with the postmaster-general, summarily
refused to sell.

Sir Pitiless Stone, Bart., could do nothing
then but worry the boy Tom in his capacity
of private under his command in the
Asterisk Militia. Tom, who had not respected
rabbits, was of course the boy to speak
murderously of a Bart, and was heard to say
in a desperate way, that Sir Pitiless tormented
and worried till he was half ready to run his
bayonet through him. He did a better
thing, by withdrawing himself wholly from
the sight of his offended master. He enlisted
into the line, and is at present a private of the
gallant three thousand nine hundred and
twenty-seventh, now on its way to the Crimea.


ON Monday, the twentieth of August last,
when all Paris, and all its vast crowds of
visitors, were agog to see Queen Victoria in the
Champs Elysées, a stately hearse, followed by
mourning coaches and a large procession,
crossed the avenue, and changed for a
moment the thoughts of the sight-seers. The
question, "Whose is it?— whose is it?"
brought out the answer, " It is the funeral of
Pierre Erard, the piano-forte maker "— the
last of his name.

Without prejudging the questions of
rivalry and merit between the French and
English pianoforte-makers, and while stating
with all possible reserve the claims out