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English Sketches From Life 5

It is highly important, that whatever we learn or know, we should know correctly; for unless our knowledge be correct, we lose half its value and usefulness.

A German tourist expresses himself in regard to his Scottish experiences as follows: "A person angry says to-day that he was from the theatre gallary spit upon. Very fine. I also was spit upon. Not on the dress but into the eye strait it came with strong force while I look up angry to the gallary. Befor I come to your country I worship the Scotland of my books, my 'Waverly Novel,' you know, but now I dwell here since six months, in all parts, the picture change. I now know of the bad smell, the oath and curse of God's name, the wisky drink and the rudeness. You have much money here, but you want what money can not buye—heart cultivating that makes respect for gentle things. O! to be spit in the eye in one half million of peopled town. Let me no longer be in this cold country, where people push in the street, blow the noze with naked finger, empty the dish at the house door, chooze the clergy from the lower classes and then go with them to death for an ecclesiastical theory which none of them can understand. I go home three days time." There is more in this than grotesque English, however. It abounds with good sense and penetration.

* * *

A college professor, describing the effect of the wind in some Western forests, wrote, "In traveling along the road, I even sometimes found the logs bound and twisted together to such an extent that a mule couldn't climb over them, so I went round."

* * *

A mayor in a popular university town issued the following proclamation: "Whereas a Multiplicity of Dangers are often incurred by Damage of outrageous Accidents by Fire, we whose names are undesigned have thought proper that the Benefit of an Engine bought by us for the better extinguishing of which by the Accidents of Almighty God may unto us happen to make a Rate togather Benevolence for the better propagating such useful Instruments."

A certain friendly society, which was also a sort of mutual insurance organization, had this among its printed notices to the members: "In the event of your death, you are requested to bring your book, policy, and certificate at once to Mr. ——, when your claims will have immediate attention."

A clergyman writes, "A young woman died in my neighborhood yesterday, while I was preaching the gospel in a beastly state of intoxication."

A newspaper gives an account of a man who "was driving an old ox when he became angry and kicked him, hitting his jawbone with such force as to break his leg." "We have been fairly wild ever since we read the paper," writes a contemporary, "to know who or which got angry at whom or what, and if the ox kicked the man's jaw with such force as to break the ox's leg, or how it is. Or did the man kick the ox in the jawbone with such force as to break the ox's leg, and, if so, which leg? It's one of those things which no man can find out, save only the man who kicked or was being kicked, as the case may be."

One of Sir Boyle Roche's invitations to an Irish nobleman was rather equivocal. He wrote, "I hope, my lord, if you ever come within a mile of my house you will stay there all night."

The following is a pattern piece of modern style, sanctioned by an English Board of Trade, and drawn up by an eminent authority: "Tickets are nipped at the Barriers, and passengers admitted to the platforms will have to be delivered up to the Company in event of the holders subsequently retiring from the platforms without travelling, and cannot be recognized for readmission."
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