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No man can be deceived by futurity, who does not intrust it. He who loses his thumb, is still a man; then why not he who loses his head? He who destroys himself to day, will scarcely behold the dawning of to morrow. And now, my son, as I have nothing to superadd, journey with so lemnity to the end of the chamber, and shake thine head. Shake my head said Mohamasim, in amaze. Yes, shake thine head. But I cannot; I never could: for I was born with a stiff neck. What! attempt to be a philosopher, and unable to shake thine head! Dunce, blockhead, idiot, driveller! depart, begone, hence, away ! and learn that no man can be a philosopher who cannot shake his head; ’tis at least three fourths of his wisdom. Mohamasim went his way, but did, not despond, for he was still determined to play the doctor. Had he been in England, his incapacity to shake his noddle would have been of serious inconvenience, even in that character; but matters are ordered otherwise in Turkey, where that profound species of gesticulation is entirely resigned to philosophers. Mohamasim once more trod the path to his cottage; and such was his alacrity and expedition, that though naturally beardless, cheerful in countenance, and rapid in delivery, he issued forth completely devested of himself; and, ere the lapse of an hour, was seen standing at the gates of theB. with all the exteriors of a Persian doctor. It happened to our hero, as it almost ever happens to short sighted humanity, that he owed his success to his imbecility. Had he disguised himself better, he had defeated his own schemes; since, according to the custom of the country, he would have undergone examination by the most learned of the nation, Happily, this practice, so pregnant with mischief to his plans, was escaped by the vizier's recognising him the mo
understood the business, than he determined to humour the deception. He entered, and ordering all but the vizier to withdraw, with inimitable gravity began to examine the assinego himself. Bravo! thought Mohamasim, the sultan knows no more of the materia medica than—than— than I. Had he studied for a year, he could have determined upon no comparison better illustrative of medical ignorance. My vizier, said the sultan, has a kinsman afflicted with the epilepsy. Give him fenugreek and lillies. An uncle, added the sultan, suffers under a violent phlegmon of-Give him lillies and fenugreek. Again : cried the sultan; why what is more opposite to the epilepsy than a phlegmon? True, replied the assdriver, with infinite vivacity; and pray, sire, what is more opposite to fenugreek and lillies, than lillies and fenugreek: The sultan smiled, and the vizier, less delicate in his mirth, crowed aloud with laughter. For a multitude of complaints remedies were proposed by Mohamasim with equal facility. At length the sultan pronounced the name of the princess. I am glad, said the doctor, she is unwell; that is, because—I am glad—I mean, I am sorry—that I shall have the honour of curing one so cherished by your people, which will give me mighty satisfaction. You appear to be so confused between joy and sorrow, that you know not what you say; but, come, follow me. His heart beating turbulently with expectation, MohaImasim, accompanied by the sultan, paced an extensive suite of chambers, embellished with admirable paintings, superb tapestry, and couches covered with cloth of gold; all which Mohamasim, with great apathy, wished at the devil, for retarding his progress. The sultan observing his impetuosity, sported with it; he was
minutely descriptive in his remarks; on this sofa he had toyed, hour after hour, with a favourite sultana, and on that chewed opiates by the pound; this was the portrait of an ancestor who wore a rose-coloured turban, and that of an ancestor who did not wear a rose-coloured turban. The poor fellow waxed furious with vexation and impatience; I wish, thought he, every one of your ancestors were cast into the rose-coloured sea. After a perambulation of an hour, they reached an extensive saloon, where the sultan seated himself upon the carpet in that position which our tailors are so fond of apeing, and exclaimed, prepare for the physician | Upon the instant, to the unutterable astonishment of Mohamasim, innumerable hands and arms were projected through the tapestry from the adjacent chamber. This, said the sultan, is the custom of the Turks; from the appearance of the arm, and the beating of the pulse, ascertain their complaints, and administer; I leave you to your observations; but remember to respect our laws. Recovered from his wonder, Mohamasim inquired for the princess, but obtained no reply. What, said he, are ye women, and cannot speak 2 A pair of arms were gently waved to and fro; alas! said he, shrewd and discerning as I am, I can neither remove phlegmons nor epilepsies by regarding a pair of withered elbows. Oh love I love 1 sighed a
voice. Of all complaints, said the
doctor, that has least to do with the elbows. Art thou a man, said the voice : I believe so, replied, the doctor. Return thee hither at night, then, and be happy. Though a pair of arms, aged, withered, and diseased, was no very inviting entrance to happiness, Mohamasim bowed with feigned ecstacy, and embraced them; he had little inclination to the intrigue, but he hoped it might lead to an interview with the princess; and then, said he, who knows what may happen. I have no wife, and owe not a farthing to chick or child. He now retrod the galleries, turning a deaf ear to the supplications of his patients; do not die to night, said he, laughing, for I shall see your elbowships to morrow. In the midst of this pretty speech he was rather surprised to feel himself rudely seized by a set of infernal looking fellows, with squeaking voices, who, notwithstanding his tears and entreaties, bore him away to the sultan. Mohamasim, said the commander of the Faithful, since you have contrived to kiss the princess, I remit the punishment of the whip; but, for having attempted to impose upon me, the master of the earth, the wisest of mankind, I doom thee to imprisonment till the moon change; nevertheless, care shall be taken that you not only live, but live luxuriously. I command, said he, turning to his slaves, that Mahomasim be plentifully supplied with food, and that it be daily changed, lest it pall upon the appetite, from fenugreek and lillies, to lillies and fenugreek; hurry him away.
Mohamasim, though immured in a cell, where nothing was less trou
blesome than the light, could not refrain his laughter. Now, said he, has this master of the earth, this wisest of mankind, taken into his silly head that I have kissed the princess; well, since my shoulders are secure, of what consequence is a few basins of boiled lillies : thank heaven I am not incarcerated with that amorous old beldam of withered excellence.
He had not been an hour confined, ere, with tiresome punctuality, the promised beverage was handed to him in all the mockery of splendour. Determined to rid himself of the nauseating task, by performing it without delay, he was raising it to his lips, when his progress was retarded by a voice, which he recognised for his friend the sultan’s, exclaiming: “Happy the being, who, like Mohamasim the ass driver, drinks physick from a golden saick, and rapturously kisses the elbows, aged, withered, and diseased, of that amorous old beldam, the princess
Roxalinda ''' “The princess Roxalinda?” echoed Mohamasim; “holy prophet, who ever dreamed of a princess being old
and ugly!” MOMUS.
FROM THE LITERARY PA No RAM.A. FEMALE HEROISM, AS EVINCED DURING THE REIGN OF TERROUR OF * La Bourbe, la Conciergerie, le Plessis, le Luxembourg, l'Abbaye, Sevres, Port Libre, were houses of arrestation, or prisons in Paris.
IN reviewing Mrs. Bristow's translation of Mons. Legouvé's poem la Mérite des Femmes, we expressed our surprise at her not inserting those authentick anecdotes, which that author had collected and added to his notes.—We then promised to supply her omission; we now enter on the fulfilment of our promise; they will form an interesting sequel to the curious narratives which we collected in our first volume, in proof of the celebrated prophecy found after M. de la Harpe's death, among his papers.
It is impossible to reflect, without emotion and gratitude, on the courageous affection, and indefatigable perseverance, which were displayed by the female sex under the reign of terrour, towards their prosciibed husbands, relations, or friends.— First, they petitioned the convention in their behalf, to the number of 1500 or 1600. Afterwards, in all the towns where incarcerations and murders took place, they braved every danger, made every entreaty, submitted to every sacrifice, to save, or at least to see, and to comfort, the objects of their affection; and more than once, when they could neither obtain their liberty nor protect them, they willingly shared their captivity and death. I should be very happy to pay a tribute to each of those he: roines, in recording her name and the instance of her magnanimity; but how could I collect accounts of actions so innumerable : I have, however, gathered some: they will be sufficient to attest the truth of my verses, while they witness the kindness of those consoling angels, who, in days of crime, imitated Providence itself. Madame Lefort, in one of the western departments, trembling for the life of her husband, then imprisoned as a conspirator, bought a permission to see him. At dark, she flies to him with a double dress; she prevails on him to change apparel, to go out in this disguise, and to leave her there. On the next day it is discovered that his wife has taken his place. The representative addresses her in a menacing tone, “ wretch, what have you done o’— “My duty,” says she, “do yours.” The same stratagem was employed at Lyons, when that valiant city, reduced to submit to her conquerors, became the theatre of the most barbarous executions. One of the inhabitants is marked for imprisonment; his wife is apprised of it; she hastens to warn him, gives him all her money and jewels, forces him to escape, and puts on the dress of this threatened husband. The executioners come to demand him: his wife dressed like him makes her appearance, and is conducted to the committee. The deceit being soon discovered, she is examined respecting her husband; she answers that “she has obliged him to fly; and that
in the presidial of Riom, had been
arrested in that town, and ordered to be carried to the Conciergerie; he was overwhelmed with age and infirmities. Madame Davaux, aware of the fate prepared for him, resolvcd to share the bloody sacrifice. No warrant had been issued against her; and not being confined, she jumped upon the wagon in which the prisoners of the departments were car. ried to Paris. On their arrival, she was imprisoned with them, and died five months after on the scaffold, by the side of her husband, while she was embracing him. Madame Lavergne, the wife of the commander in Longwy, raised her voice in his favour, before the revolutionary tribunal, when he was examined respecting the surrender of that town. Fruitless exertion : his sentence was pronounced in her presence. She then abandoned her
† Extract from the book entitled La Philosophie du Bonheur, of Cit. Delille De
salle, author of la Philosophie de la JWature.
self to despair. To be immolated, it was sufficient to exclaim “ Vive le Roi (* she made it resound through the hall. In vain were the judges willing to consider her as insane; she persisted in repeating the exclamation, till she obtained her wish and was condemned. Madame Roland, the minister’s wife, pleaded his cause, at the bar of the convention, with as much fortitude as eloquence. When arrested and unable to assist him, she bequeathed an example of intrepidity in death, in the calm with which she went to the scaffold. Some unfortunate persons were brought to Paris, and put in the Plessis, to be tried. One of them had a young and beautiful wife, who had not quitted him. While she was walking in the yard, with the other prisoners, her husband was called to the door of the prison. Anticipating this as the signal for his death, she endeavours to follow him; the jailer objects to it; but strengthened by her misery, she breaks through every thing, runs into the arms of her husband, and clasps him, to enjoy at least the direful comfort of sharing his fate. The guards separate them. “ Barbarians,” said she, “still I will die;” instantly she flies to the iron door of the prison, violently strikes her head againstit, and falls expiring on the spot. Marshal de Mouchy was carried to the Luxembourg. No sooner was he there, than his wife comes in. They observe to her that the warrant does not mention her; her answer is: “Since my husband is imprisoned, I am also a prisoner.” He is brought before the revolutionary tribunal; she accompanies him. The publick accuser observes that she has not been subpoenaed; her answer is: “Since my husband is summoned here, I must come also.” He is at last sentenced to die; she steps with
him into the bloody cart. The executioner tells her she is not condemned: “Since my husband is condemned:” says she, “I am also.” Without uttering another word, she was executed with her husband.* If, in those horrid days, Hymen made every exertion in behalf of the unfortunate, it may be well conceived that Love, more impetuous, did not yield to him. The mistress of citizen Causso, a merchant in Toulouse, gave an instance of this. The revolutionary commission of
that town had condemned him; it
was dark when his sentence was pronounced; therefore the execution was delayed till the next day. His mistress having heard of the delay, resolved to take advantage of it to deliver him from the hands of the executioners. There was an uninhabited house adjoining the place where he was to spend the night. She, who, during his trial, had sold all her property, to procure money to lavish in his behalf, immediately purchases that house. Thither she runs with a trusty chambermaid. They perforate the wall adjoining the prison, and make an opening in it large enough for the escape of the captive whom they wish to release; but the neighbourhood being crowded with guards, how can their discovery of him be prevented A military disguise, which this cautious friend has brought with her, conceals his escape. Dressed herself as a gend’armes, she leads him on through the sentries. They went thus through the town without being recognised, and passed by the very place where the instrument was preparing which was to cut off a head, that Love contrived in this manner to preserve. Love rescued also a young man of Bourdeaux, who had been thrown into one of the prisons of that town.
* This venerable Duke, the Marshal de Mouchy, was upwards of severty years of
age; his lady was nearly as old.—Editor.