Chapter 62144982

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Chapter NumberXV.
Chapter Url
Full Date1884-09-27
Page Number6
Word Count1602
Last Corrected2020-07-18
Newspaper TitleClarence and Richmond Examiner and New England Advertiser (Grafton, NSW : 1859 - 1889)
Trove TitleJohn Brown and His Dog Faithful
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In the previous chapter we see reader, how truth comes to the fore. Duplicity, doubleness, deceit, go on their way for a time with head erect—boldly, unshaken ; but the day and hour comes when our fellowmen—the world at large—unmasks the traitor. Duplicity may revel and carouse, cover the face of the truth like a dramatic performance, or a mas- querader, but it is only for a time ; equivocation has its day, and no more.

Mrs Psyche Handslip would run the gamut of deceit to out—manoeuvre Lyndhurst ; her tactics were unavailing.

The barrister entered the same arena of falsehood. The result in each case has been shown.

We want, my reader, that paramount sense of high rectitude that will make unmistakably to our minds the great wickedness of lying in any form ; that will banish under weight, and measure from the sellers' counter; sand from sugar, chicory from coffee, fat from butter, alum from bread ; strychnine and fusel oil from spirits, salt and tobacco from beer, the cow with the iron tail from milk. Emerson may well say, " character teaches above our will ; men imagine that they communicate their virtue or vice only by overt actions, and do not see that virture or vice writes a breath every moment." Life is a book, and what we write in it we cannot unwrite. Our pen is time, our ink indelible; so if we think of writing a wrong, by word or deed, far for better us to leave it in the inkstand.

"Think truly, and thy thoughts

Shall the world's famine feed.

Speak truly, and each word of thine

Shall be a fruitful seed ;

Live truly, and thy life shall be A great and noble deed."

* * * * * *


" Escaped from the Penal Works of Victoria, last week:, a prisoner known by the name of Walker, alias Lightfingered Moses, De Wert ; five feet nine in height ; dark hair, grey eyes ; a Jewish cast of countenance; supposed to have escaped from Port Arthur two years ago. The above reward will be paid to any person giving information that will lead to his apprehension.

"By order——————. " God Save the Queen."

The above notice was placarded on the walls and hoardings of the city of Melbourne. It caught the eyes of the church-goers, as they went to their differ-

ent places of worship on the Sunday ; it caught the parson's eye, as he came from the sanctuary. Red- headed boys, without hats, and gutter snipes, without shoes stood round the notion, and spelled it out. Some said, with finger in mouth, " Oh, crickey ! what a lark." A boy who was smoking a piece of cane, said, "Bill, that Moses is the chap that stole the bull- rushes when he was a kid, and put his mother in and sent her upside down up the river, I knows the fellow ; he stole his father's sheep for 40 years.

They made a queen of his mother, until she kilt a man ; but the beaks never cotched her. This is the Moses, or why should they put him in quod, if it was not for his father's sheep ?"

Another boy, wiping his nose on the sleeve of his coat with a sharp sniff, replied, " You knows nothing about it, my pippin. That Moses died in the lark that were built by Joseph, that run away from his mother when she was going to whack him one day. So he made a coat like a rainbow and hooked it, and built a kark, and put Moses' sheep he stole in ; but Moses was drowned, and then all his brothers were sold by their mother to drive camels. I knows all about it ; granny read it to me in a book."

" Shut up," said a number of voices in chorus, " go

and teach your mother to sit on her hind legs ; don't you try to teach us."

Up came a local preacher, who had the Scotch Sabbath in his walk and gait, and mirrored it in his stern countenance. As he approached the street arabs, his eye caught the placard on the hoarding, and partly hearing what the chorus said, he turned up the milky portion of his eyes, saying :

"Children of Belial— desecrators of the canopy of the earth—wallowing in the mire, glutted with pro- fanity, steeped in sin, sleeping in vice, walking in the ways of the ungodly, smoking cane," and he pointed his crooked, sanctimonious finger at the smoker, "until the very footpath becomes a salivarium for the mucous of your mouth. Do you know what to-day is? Answer me." Spoken—the last two words—as a martinet of the first water.

The boys the whole time stood looking at him with open mouth.

The well-informed speaker of above called out, at the top of his voice, to a boy on the other side of the street.

"Hi ! hi !" beckoning with his finger, " come here; such jolly fun. Here's a chap here been out all night, so wants to know what day it is. Oh, crikey ! if the bobbies cotched him sleeping in the street last night they would run him in, and up before the beak to- morrow."

" Heigho, heigh-ho, to-day is Sunday, old boy. How did you get tight last night ? We thought you were three sheets in when you spoke that Latin gibberish to us just now. Here's a bobby coming ; you had bettor toddle. Heigh-ho ; good bye."

Off the boys scampered, leaving the local in pious horror, thanking God his soul was saved, and that he was doing so much good in the heavenly vine- yard. He had preached that morning from the text to old and young—Sunday school anniversary services —" Ye are of your father, the devil ;" and in the afternoon to the same congregation, he gave out the text, " Children obey your parents." The congruity of the texts was not lost on the illiterate pious, who sighed and groaned over the pictures drawn of Satan's children, from Moses to De Wert ; from the red- headed boy who replied to the saint's query to Joseph in Egypt. The cane smoker was made to illustrate the smoke from hell, and in conclusion, the preacher lifting up his two hands as if about to bestow a blessing on the heads of his hearers, said, " Ye are of your father, the devil," and up went the milky por- tion of his eyes. " Children, obey your parents. I am done."

In the evening the local hold forth again, all the Sunday school sitting on the left of the church, and parents on the right. The text was, " He shall set the sheep on his right hand, and the goats on the left."

As he, the preacher, warmed to his work, his eyes began to roll and go from side to side. At last, up went the whites of the eyes like the optics of a wax doll ; then, like a Rodomontade, he boasted of his " sure and certain hope," saying, " You will see me go higher and higher, hup and hup to God, to sit on

the white throne, while you," spreading his hands

like a canopy, "will go down there," pointing to the lower regions with one finger. Then, in concluding his peroration, he said, pointing to the children on the left, " He shall set the goats on the left," and pointing with the other hand "and the sheep on the right. These shall go away—away to everlasting punishment," waving his hand, as a parting blessing to the children. " But the righteous into life eternal," looking at the parents.

NOTE.—The above is a fact.

Here we have a placing seal before knowledge ; a man, untrained and illiterate, carried away to use language and action like a braying ass, to the terror and danger of all about the animal. It was at one time considered a miracle for Balsam's ass to speak ; now the miracle would be to get an ass to keep silent. History does not at all times repeat itself. The children on the way home from the Bethel, asked their parents why were they gnats ?What had they done ? The morning, afternoon, and evening services were a study, as any modern hieroglyphics, or Hogarth's "Rake's Progress," or Cruickshank's " Bottle." The preacher meant well ; but he had never sat at the feet of Gamaliel, or made the mode of the Great Master's (Christ) teaching his model, or studied the illuminating love of John of Patmos. He was a Pharisee and a Boanerge combined, taking the highest seat at feasts, making broad his phylactenes, and speaking in the voice of thunder. I wonder will such men sing at the top of their voices in heaven ?