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Barry Lyndon by William Makepeace Thackeray

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made free to send up a jug of claret without my asking; and charged,
you may be sure, pretty handsomely for it in the bill. No gentleman
in those good old days went to bed without a good share of liquor to
set him sleeping, and on this my first day's entrance into the
world, I made a point to act the fine gentleman completely; and, I
assure you, succeeded in my part to admiration. The excitement of
the events of the day, the quitting my home, the meeting with
Captain Quin, were enough to set my brains in a whirl, without the
claret; which served to finish me completely. I did not dream of the
death of Quin, as some milksops, perhaps, would have done; indeed, I
have never had any of that foolish remorse consequent upon any of my
affairs of honour: always considering, from the first, that where a
gentleman risks his own life in manly combat, he is a fool to be
ashamed because he wins. I slept at Carlow as sound as man could
sleep; drank a tankard of small beer and a toast to my breakfast;
and exchanged the first of my gold pieces to settle the bill, not
forgetting to pay all the servants liberally, and as a gentleman
should. I began so the first day of my life, and so have continued.
No man has been at greater straits than I, and has borne more
pinching poverty and hardship; but nobody can say of me that, if I
had a guinea, I was not free-handed with it, and did not spend it as
well as a lord could do.

I had no doubts of the future: thinking that a man of my person,
parts, and courage, could make his way anywhere. Besides, I had
twenty gold guineas in my pocket; a sum which (although I was
mistaken) I calculated would last me for four months at least,
during which time something would be done towards the making of my
fortune. So I rode on, singing to myself, or chatting with the
passers-by; and all the girls along the road said God save me for a
clever gentleman! As for Nora and Castle Brady, between to-day and
yesterday there seemed to be a gap as of half-a-score of years. I
vowed I would never re-enter the place but as a great man; and I
kept my vow too, as you shall hear in due time.

There was much more liveliness and bustle on the king's highroad in
those times, than in these days of stage-coaches, which carry you
from one end of the kingdom to another in a few score hours. The
gentry rode their own horses or drove in their own coaches, and
spent three days on a journey which now occupies ten hours; so that
there was no lack of company for a person travelling towards Dublin.
I made part of the journey from Carlow towards Naas with a well-
armed gentleman from Kilkenny, dressed in green and a gold cord,
with a patch on his eye, and riding a powerful mare. He asked me the
question of the day, and whither I was bound, and whether my mother
was not afraid on account of the highwaymen to let one so young as
myself to travel? But I said, pulling out one of them from a
holster, that I had a pair of good pistols that had already done
execution, and were ready to do it again; and here, a pock-marked
man coming up, he put spurs into his bay mare and left me. She was a
much more powerful animal than mine; and, besides, I did not wish to
fatigue my horse, wishing to enter Dublin that night, and in
reputable condition.

As I rode towards Kilcullen, I saw a crowd of the peasant-people
assembled round a one-horse chair, and my friend in green, as I
thought, making off half a mile up the hill. A footman was howling
'Stop thief!' at the top of his voice; but the country fellows were
only laughing at his distress, and making all sorts of jokes at the
adventure which had just befallen.

'Sure you might have kept him off with your blunderBUSH!' says one

'Oh, the coward! to let the Captain BATE you; and he only one eye!'
cries another.

'The next time my Lady travels, she'd better lave you at home!' said
a third.

'What is this noise, fellows?' said I, riding up amongst them, and,
seeing a lady in the carriage very pale and frightened, gave a slash
of my whip, and bade the red-shanked ruffians keep off. 'What has
happened, madam, to annoy your Ladyship?' I said, pulling off my
hat, and bringing my mare up in a prance to the chair window.

The lady explained. She was the wife of Captain Fitzsimons, and was
hastening to join the Captain at Dublin. Her chair had been stopped
by a highway-man: the great oaf of a servant-man had fallen down on
his knees armed as he was; and though there were thirty people in
the next field working when the ruffian attacked her, not one of
them would help her; but, on the contrary, wished the Captain, as
they called the highwayman, good luck.

'Sure he's the friend of the poor,' said one fellow, 'and good luck
to him!'

'Was it any business of ours?' asked another. And another told,
grinning, that it was the famous Captain Freny, who, having bribed
the jury to acquit him two days back at Kilkenny assizes, had
mounted his horse at the gaol door, and the very next day had robbed
two barristers who were going the circuit.

I told this pack of rascals to be off to their work, or they should
taste of my thong, and proceeded, as well as I could, to comfort
Mrs. Fitzsimons under her misfortunes. 'Had she lost much?'
'Everything: her purse, containing upwards of a hundred guineas; her
jewels, snuff-boxes, watches, and a pair of diamond shoe-buckles of
the Captain's.' These mishaps I sincerely commiserated; and knowing
her by her accent to be an Englishwoman, deplored the difference
that existed between the two countries, and said that in OUR country
(meaning England) such atrocities were unknown.

'You, too, are an Englishman?' said she, with rather a tone of
surprise. On which I said I was proud to be such: as, in fact, I
was; and I never knew a true Tory gentleman of Ireland who did not
wish he could say as much.

I rode by Mrs. Fitzsimon's chair all the way to Naas; and, as she
had been robbed of her purse, asked permission to lend her a couple
of pieces to pay her expenses at the inn: which sum she was
graciously pleased to accept, and was, at the same time, kind enough
to invite me to share her dinner. To the lady's questions regarding
my birth and parentage, I replied that I was a young gentleman of
large fortune (this was not true; but what is the use of crying bad
fish? my dear mother instructed me early in this sort of prudence)
and good family in the county of Waterford; that I was going to
Dublin for my studies, and that my mother allowed me five hundred
per annum. Mrs. Fitzsimons was equally communicative. She was the
daughter of General Granby Somerset of Worcestershire, of whom, of
course, I had heard (and though I had not, of course I was too well-
bred to say so); and had made, as she must confess, a runaway match
with Ensign Fitzgerald Fitzsimons. Had I been in Donegal?--No! That
was a pity. The Captain's father possesses a hundred thousand acres
there, and Fitzsimonsburgh Castle's the finest mansion in Ireland.
Captain Fitzsimons is the eldest son; and, though he has quarrelled
with his father, must inherit the vast property. She went on to tell
me about the balls at Dublin, the banquets at the Castle, the horse-
races at the Phoenix, the ridottos and routs, until I became quite
eager to join in those pleasures; and I only felt grieved to think
that my position would render secrecy necessary, and prevent me from
being presented at the Court, of which the Fitzsimonses were the
most elegant ornaments. How different was her lively rattle to that
of the vulgar wenches at the Kilwangan assemblies! In every sentence
she mentioned a lord or a person of quality. She evidently spoke
French and Italian, of the former of which languages I have said I
knew a few words; and, as for her English accent, why, perhaps I was
no judge of that, for, to say the truth, she was the first REAL
English person I had ever met. She recommended me, further, to be
very cautious with regard to the company I should meet at Dublin,
where rogues and adventurers of all countries abounded; and my
delight and gratitude to her may be imagined, when, as our
conversation grew more intimate (as we sat over our dessert), she
kindly offered to accommodate me with lodgings in her own house,
where her Fitzsimons, she said, would welcome with delight her
gallant young preserver.

'Indeed, madam,' said I, 'I have preserved nothing for you.' Which
was perfectly true; for had I not come up too late after the robbery
to prevent the highwayman from carrying off her money and pearls?

'And sure, ma'am, them wasn't much,' said Sullivan, the blundering
servant, who had been so frightened at Freny's approach, and was
waiting on us at dinner. 'Didn't he return you the thirteenpence in
copper, and the watch, saying it was only pinch-beck?'

But his lady rebuked him for a saucy varlet, and turned him out of
the room at once, saying to me when he had gone, 'that the fool
didn't know what was the meaning of a hundred-pound bill, which was
in the pocket-book that Freny took from her.'

Perhaps had I been a little older in the world's experience, I
should have begun to see that Madam Fitzsimons was not the person of
fashion she pretended to be; but, as it was, I took all her stories
for truth, and, when the landlord brought the bill for dinner, paid
it with the air of a lord. Indeed, she made no motion to produce the
two pieces I had lent to her; and so we rode on slowly towards
Dublin, into which city we made our entrance at nightfall. The
rattle and splendour of the coaches, the flare of the linkboys, the
number and magnificence of the houses, struck me with the greatest
wonder; though I was careful to disguise this feeling, according to
my dear mother's directions, who told me that it was the mark of a
man of fashion never to wonder at anything, and never to admit that
any house, equipage, or company he saw, was more splendid or genteel
than what he had been accustomed to at home.

We stopped, at length, at a house of rather mean appearance, and
were let into a passage by no means so clean as that at Barryville,
where there was a great smell of supper and punch. A stout red-faced
man, without a periwig, and in rather a tattered nightgown and cap,
made his appearance from the parlour, and embraced his lady (for it
was Captain Fitzsimons) with a great deal of cordiality. Indeed,
when he saw that a stranger accompanied her, he embraced her more
rapturously than ever. In introducing me, she persisted in saying
that I was her preserver, and complimented my gallantry as much as
if I had killed Freny, instead of coming up when the robbery was
over. The Captain said he knew the Redmonds of Waterford intimately
well: which assertion alarmed me, as I knew nothing of the family to
which I was stated to belong. But I posed him, by asking WHICH of
the Redmonds he knew, for I had never heard his name in our family.
He said he knew the Redmonds of Redmondstown. 'Oh,' says I, 'mine
are the Redmonds of Castle Redmond;' and so I put him off the scent.
I went to see my nag put up at a livery-stable hard by, with the
Captain's horse and chair, and returned to my entertainer.

Although there were the relics of some mutton-chops and onions on a
cracked dish before him, the Captain said, 'My love, I wish I had
known of your coming, for Bob Moriarty and I just finished the most
delicious venison pasty, which his Grace the Lord Lieutenant sent
us, with a flask of Sillery from his own cellar. You know the wine,
my dear? But as bygones are bygones, and no help for them, what say
ye to a fine lobster and a bottle of as good claret as any in
Ireland? Betty, clear these things from the table, and make the
mistress and our young friend welcome to our home.'

Not having small change, Mr. Fitzsimons asked me to lend him a
tenpenny-piece to purchase the dish of lobsters; but his lady,
handing out one of the guineas I had given her, bade the girl get
the change for that, and procure the supper; which she did
presently, bringing back only a very few shillings out of the guinea
to her mistress, saying that the fishmonger had kept the remainder
for an old account. 'And the more great big blundering fool you, for
giving the gold piece to him,' roared Mr. Fitzsimons. I forget how
many hundred guineas he said he had paid the fellow during the year.

Our supper was seasoned, if not by any great elegance, at least by a
plentiful store of anecdotes, concerning the highest personages of
the city; with whom, according to himself, the Captain lived on
terms of the utmost intimacy. Not to be behindhand with him, I spoke
of my own estates and property as if I was as rich as a duke. I told
all the stories of the nobility I had ever heard from my mother, and
some that, perhaps, I had invented; and ought to have been aware
that my host was an impostor himself, as he did not find out my own
blunders and misstatements. But youth is ever too confident. It was
some time before I knew that I had made no very desirable
acquaintance in Captain Fitzsimons and his lady; and, indeed, went
to bed congratulating myself upon my wonderful good luck in having,
at the outset of my adventures, fallen in with so distinguished a

The appearance of the chamber I occupied might, indeed, have led me
to imagine that the heir of Fitzsimonsburgh Castle, county Donegal,
was not as yet reconciled with his wealthy parents; and, had I been
an English lad, probably my suspicion and distrust would have been
aroused instantly. But perhaps, as the reader knows, we are not so
particular in Ireland on the score of neatness as people are in this
precise country; hence the disorder of my bedchamber did not strike
me so much. For were not all the windows broken and stuffed with
rags even at Castle Brady, my uncle's superb mansion? Was there ever
a lock to the doors there, or if a lock, a handle to the lock or a
hasp to fasten it to? So, though my bedroom boasted of these
inconveniences, and a few more; though my counterpane was evidently
a greased brocade dress of Mrs. Fitzsimons's, and my cracked toilet-
glass not much bigger than a half-crown, yet I was used to this sort
of ways in Irish houses, and still thought myself in that of a man
of fashion. There was no lock to the drawers, which, when they DID
open, were full of my hostess's rouge-pots, shoes, stays, and rags;
so I allowed my wardrobe to remain in my valise, but set out my
silver dressing-apparatus upon the ragged cloth on the drawers,
where it shone to great advantage.

When Sullivan appeared in the morning, I asked him about my mare,
which he informed me was doing well. I then bade him bring me hot
shaving-water, in a loud dignified tone.

'Hot shaving-water!' says he, bursting out laughing (and I confess
not without reason). 'Is it yourself you're going to shave?' said
he. 'And maybe when I bring you up the water I'll bring you up the
cat too, and you can shave her.' I flung a boot at the scoundrel's
head in reply to this impertinence, and was soon with my friends in
the parlour for breakfast. There was a hearty welcome, and the same
cloth that had been used the night before: as I recognised by the
black mark of the Irish-stew dish, and the stain left by a pot of
porter at supper.

My host greeted me with great cordiality; Mrs. Fitzsimons said I was
an elegant figure for the Phoenix; and indeed, without vanity, I may
say of myself that there were worse-looking fellows in Dublin than
I. I had not the powerful chest and muscular proportion which I have
since attained (to be exchanged, alas! for gouty legs and chalk-
stones in my fingers; but 'tis the way of mortality), but I had
arrived at near my present growth of six feet, and with my hair in
buckle, a handsome lace jabot and wristbands to my shirt, and a red
plush waistcoat, barred with gold, looked the gentleman I was born.
I wore my drab coat with plate buttons, that was grown too small for
me, and quite agreed with Captain Fitzsimons that I must pay a visit
to his tailor, in order to procure myself a coat more fitting my

'I needn't ask whether you had a comfortable bed,' said he. 'Young
Fred Pimpleton (Lord Pimpleton's second son) slept in it for seven
months, during which he did me the honour to stay with me, and if HE
was satisfied, I don't know who else wouldn't be.'

After breakfast we walked out to see the town, and Mr. Fitzsimons
introduced me to several of his acquaintances whom we met, as his
particular young friend Mr. Redmond, of Waterford county; he also
presented me at his hatter's and tailor's as a gentleman of great
expectations and large property; and although I told the latter that
I should not pay him ready cash for more than one coat, which fitted
me to a nicety, yet he insisted upon making me several, which I did
not care to refuse. The Captain, also, who certainly wanted such a
renewal of raiment, told the tailor to send him home a handsome
military frock, which he selected.

Then we went home to Mrs. Fitzsimons, who drove out in her chair to
the Phoenix Park, where a review was, and where numbers of the young
gentry were round about her; to all of whom she presented me as her
preserver of the day before. Indeed, such was her complimentary
account of me, that before half-an-hour I had got to be considered
as a young gentleman of the highest family in the land, related to
all the principal nobility, a cousin of Captain Fitzsimons, and heir
to L10,000 a year. Fitzsimons said he had ridden over every inch of
my estate; and 'faith, as he chose to tell these stories for me, I
let him have his way--indeed, was not a little pleased (as youth is)
to be made much of, and to pass for a great personage. I had little
notion then that I had got among a set of impostors--that Captain
Fitzsimons was only an adventurer, and his lady a person of no
credit; but such are the dangers to which youth is perpetually
subject, and hence let young men take warning by me.

I purposely hurry over the description of my life in which the
incidents were painful, of no great interest except to my unlucky
self, and of which my companions were certainly not of a kind
befitting my quality. The fact was, a young man could hardly have
fallen into worse hands than those in which I now found myself. I
have been to Donegal since, and have never seen the famous Castle of
Fitzsimonsburgh, which is, likewise, unknown to the oldest
inhabitants of that county; nor are the Granby Somersets much better
known in Worcestershire. The couple into whose hands I had fallen
were of a sort much more common then than at present, for the vast
wars of later days have rendered it very difficult for noblemen's
footmen or hangers-on to procure commissions; and such, in fact, had
been the original station of Captain Fitzsimons. Had I known his
origin, of course I would have died rather than have associated with
him: but in those simple days of youth I took his tales for truth,
and fancied myself in high luck at being, at my outset into life,
introduced into such a family. Alas! we are the sport of destiny.
When I consider upon what small circumstances all the great events
of my life have turned, I can hardly believe myself to have been
anything but a puppet in the hands of Fate; which has played its
most fantastic tricks upon me.

The Captain had been a gentleman's gentleman, and his lady of no
higher rank. The society which this worthy pair kept was at a sort
of ordinary which they held, and at which their friends were always
welcome on payment of a certain moderate sum for their dinner. After
dinner, you may be sure that cards were not wanting, and that the
company who played did not play for love merely. To these parties
persons of all sorts would come: young bloods from the regiments
garrisoned in Dublin: young clerks from the Castle; horse-riding,
wine-tippling, watchman-beating men of fashion about town, such as
existed in Dublin in that day more than in any other city with which
I am acquainted in Europe. I never knew young fellows make such a
show, and upon such small means. I never knew young gentlemen with
what I may call such a genius for idleness; and whereas an
Englishman with fifty guineas a year is not able to do much more
than starve, and toil like a slave in a profession, a young Irish
buck with the same sum will keep his horses, and drink his bottle,
and live as lazy as a lord. Here was a doctor who never had a
patient, cheek by jowl with an attorney who never had a client:
neither had a guinea--each had a good horse to ride in the Park, and
the best of clothes to his back. A sporting clergyman without a
living; several young wine-merchants, who consumed much more liquor
than they had or sold; and men of similar character, formed the
society at the house into which, by ill luck, I was thrown. What
could happen to a man but misfortune from associating with such
company?--(I have not mentioned the ladies of the society, who were,
perhaps, no better than the males)--and in a very very short time I
became their prey.

As for my poor twenty guineas, in three days I saw, with terror,
that they had dwindled down to eight: theatres and taverns having
already made such cruel inroads in my purse. At play I had lost, it
is true, a couple of pieces; but seeing that every one round about
me played upon honour and gave their bills, I, of course, preferred
that medium to the payment of ready money, and when I lost paid on

With the tailors, saddlers, and others, I employed similar means;
and in so far Mr. Fitzsimons's representation did me good, for the
tradesmen took him at his word regarding my fortune (I have since
learned that the rascal pigeoned several other young men of
property), and for a little time supplied me with any goods I might
be pleased to order. At length, my cash running low, I was compelled
to pawn some of the suits with which the tailor had provided me; for
I did not like to part with my mare, on which I daily rode in the
Park, and which I loved as the gift of my respected uncle. I raised
some little money, too, on a few trinkets which I had purchased of a
jeweller who pressed his credit upon me; and thus was enabled to
keep up appearances for yet a little time.

I asked at the post-office repeatedly for letters for Mr. Redmond,
but none such had arrived; and, indeed, I always felt rather
relieved when the answer of 'No' was given to me; for I was not very
anxious that my mother should know my proceedings in the extravagant
life which I was leading at Dublin. It could not last very long,
however; for when my cash was quite exhausted, and I paid a second
visit to the tailor, requesting him to make me more clothes, the
fellow hummed and ha'd, and had the impudence to ask payment for
those already supplied: on which, telling him I should withdraw my
custom from him, I abruptly left him. The goldsmith too (a rascal
Jew) declined to let me take a gold chain to which I had a fancy;
and I felt now, for the first time, in some perplexity. To add to
it, one of the young gentlemen who frequented Mr. Fitzsimons's
boarding-house had received from me, in the way of play, an IOU for
eighteen pounds (which I lost to him at piquet), and which, owing
Mr. Curbyn, the livery-stable keeper, a bill, he passed into that
person's hands. Fancy my rage and astonishment, then, on going for
my mare, to find that he positively refused to let me have her out
of the stable, except under payment of my promissory note! It was in
vain that I offered him his choice of four notes that I had in my
pocket--one of Fitzsimons's for L20, one of Counsellor Mulligan's,
and so forth; the dealer, who was a Yorkshireman, shook his head,
and laughed at every one of them; and said, 'I tell you what, Master
Redmond, you appear a young fellow of birth and fortune, and let me
whisper in your ear that you have fallen into very bad hands--it's a
regular gang of swindlers; and a gentleman of your rank and quality
should never be seen in such company. Go home: pack up your valise,
pay the little trifle to me, mount your mare, and ride back again to
your parents,--it's the very best thing you can do.'

In a pretty nest of villains, indeed, was I plunged! It seemed as if
all my misfortunes were to break on me at once; for, on going home
and ascending to my bedroom in a disconsolate way, I found the
Captain and his lady there before me, my valise open, my wardrobe
lying on the ground, and my keys in the possession of the odious
Fitzsimons. 'Whom have I been harbouring in my house?' roared he, as
I entered the apartment. 'Who are you, sirrah?'

'SIRRAH! Sir,' said I, 'I am as good a gentleman as any in Ireland.'

'You're an impostor, young man: a schemer, a deceiver!' shouted the

'Repeat the words again, and I will run you through the body,'
replied I.

'Tut, tut! I can play at fencing as well as you, Mr. REDMOND BARRY.
Ah! you change colour, do you--your secret is known, is it? You come
like a viper into the bosom of innocent families; you represent
yourself as the heir of my friends the Redmonds of Castle Redmond; I
inthrojuice you to the nobility and genthry of this methropolis'
(the Captain's brogue was large, and his words, by preference,
long); 'I take you to my tradesmen, who give you credit, and what do
I find? That you have pawned the goods which you took up at their

'I have given them my acceptances, sir,' said I with a dignified

'UNDER WHAT NAME, unhappy boy--under what name?' screamed Mrs.
Fitzsimons; and then, indeed, I remembered that I had signed the
documents Barry Redmond instead of Redmond Barry: but what else
could I do? Had not my mother desired me to take no other
designation? After uttering a furious tirade against me, in which he
spoke of the fatal discovery of my real name on my linen--of his
misplaced confidence of affection, and the shame with which he
should be obliged to meet his fashionable friends and confess that
he had harboured a swindler, he gathered up the linen, clothes,
silver toilet articles, and the rest of my gear, saying that he
should step out that moment for an officer and give me up to the
just revenge of the law.

During the first part of his speech, the thought of the imprudence
of which I had been guilty, and the predicament in which I was
plunged, had so puzzled and confounded me, that I had not uttered a
word in reply to the fellow's abuse, but had stood quite dumb before
him. The sense of danger, however, at once roused me to action.
'Hark ye, Mr. Fitzsimons,' said I; 'I will tell you why I was
obliged to alter my name: which is Barry, and the best name in
Ireland. I changed it, sir, because, on the day before I came to
Dublin, I killed a man in deadly combat--an Englishman, sir, and a
captain in His Majesty's service; and if you offer to let or hinder
me in the slightest way, the same arm which destroyed him is ready
to punish you; and by Heaven, sir, you or I don't leave this room

So saying, I drew my sword like lightning, and giving a 'ha! ha!'
and a stamp with my foot, lunged within an inch of Fitzsimons's
heart, who started back and turned deadly pale, while his wife, with
a scream, flung herself between us.

'Dearest Redmond,' she cried, 'be pacified. Fitzsimons, you don't
want the poor child's blood. Let him escape--in Heaven's name let
him go.'

'He may go hang for me,' said Fitzsimons sulkily; 'and he'd better
be off quickly, too, for the jeweller and the tailor have called
once, and will be here again before long. It was Moses the
pawnbroker that peached: I had the news from him myself.' By which I
conclude that Mr. Fitzsimons had been with the new laced frock-coat
which he procured from the merchant tailor on the day when the
latter first gave me credit.

What was the end of our conversation? Where was now a home for the
descendant of the Barrys? Home was shut to me by my misfortune in
the duel. I was expelled from Dublin by a persecution occasioned, I
must confess, by my own imprudence. I had no time to wait and
choose: no place of refuge to fly to. Fitzsimons, after his abuse of
me, left the room growling, but not hostile; his wife insisted that
we should shake hands, and he promised not to molest me. Indeed, I
owed the fellow nothing; and, on the contrary, had his acceptance
actually in my pocket for money lost at play. As for my friend Mrs.
Fitzsimons, she sat down on the bed and fairly burst out crying. She
had her faults, but her heart was kind; and though she possessed but
three shillings in the world, and fourpence in copper, the poor soul
made me take it before I left her--to go--whither? My mind was made
up: there was a score of recruiting-parties in the town beating up
for men to join our gallant armies in America and Germany; I knew
where to find one of these, having stood by the sergeant at a review
in the Phoenix Park, where he pointed out to me characters on the
field, for which I treated him to drink.

I gave one of my shillings to Sullivan the butler of the
Fitzsimonses, and, running into the street, hastened to the little
alehouse at which my acquaintance was quartered, and before ten
minutes had accepted His Majesty's shilling. I told him frankly that
I was a young gentleman in difficulties; that I had killed an
officer in a duel, and was anxious to get out of the country. But I
need not have troubled myself with any explanations; King George was
too much in want of men then to heed from whence they came, and a
fellow of my inches, the sergeant said, was always welcome. Indeed,
I could not, he said, have chosen my time better. A transport was
lying at Dunleary, waiting for a wind, and on board that ship, to
which I marched that night, I made some surprising discoveries,
which shall be told in the next chapter.



I never had a taste for anything but genteel company, and hate all
descriptions of low life. Hence my account of the society in which I
at present found myself must of necessity be short; and, indeed, the
recollection of it is profoundly disagreeable to me. Pah! the
reminiscences of the horrid black-hole of a place in which we
soldiers were confined; of the wretched creatures with whom I was
now forced to keep company; of the ploughmen, poachers, pickpockets,
who had taken refuge from poverty, or the law (as, in truth, I had
done myself), is enough to make me ashamed even now, and it calls
the blush into my old cheeks to think I was ever forced to keep such
company. I should have fallen into despair, but that, luckily,
events occurred to rouse my spirits, and in some measure to console
me for my misfortunes.

The first of these consolations I had was a good quarrel, which took
place on the day after my entrance into the transport-ship, with a
huge red-haired monster of a fellow--a chairman, who had enlisted to
fly from a vixen of a wife, who, boxer as he was, had been more than
a match for him. As soon as this fellow--Toole, I remember, was his
name--got away from the arms of the washerwoman his lady, his
natural courage and ferocity returned, and he became the tyrant of
all round about him. All recruits, especially, were the object of
the brute's insult and ill-treatment.

I had no money, as I said, and was sitting very disconsolately over
a platter of rancid bacon and mouldy biscuit, which was served to us
at mess, when it came to my turn to be helped to drink, and I was
served, like the rest, with a dirty tin noggin, containing somewhat
more than half a pint of rum-and-water. The beaker was so greasy and
filthy that I could not help turning round to the messman and
saying, 'Fellow, get me a glass!' At which all the wretches round
about me burst into a roar of laughter, the very loudest among them
being, of course, Mr. Toole. 'Get the gentleman a towel for his
hands, and serve him a basin of turtle-soup,' roared the monster,
who was sitting, or rather squatting, on the deck opposite me; and
as he spoke he suddenly seized my beaker of grog and emptied it, in
the midst of another burst of applause.

'If you want to vex him, ax him about his wife the washerwoman, who
BATES him,' here whispered in my ear another worthy, a retired link-
boy, who, disgusted with his profession, had adopted the military

'Is it a towel of your wife's washing, Mr. Toole?' said I. 'I'm told
she wiped your face often with one.'

'Ax him why he wouldn't see her yesterday, when she came to the
ship,' continued the link-boy. And so I put to him some other
foolish jokes about soapsuds, henpecking, and flat-irons, which set
the man into a fury, and succeeded in raising a quarrel between us.
We should have fallen to at once, but a couple of grinning marines,
who kept watch at the door, for fear we should repent of our bargain
and have a fancy to escape, came forward and interposed between us
with fixed bayonets; but the sergeant coming down the ladder, and
hearing the dispute, condescended to say that we might fight it out
like men with FISTES if we chose, and that the fore-deck should be
free to us for that purpose. But the use of fistes, as the
Englishman called them, was not then general in Ireland, and it was
agreed that we should have a pair of cudgels; with one of which
weapons I finished the fellow in four minutes, giving him a thump
across his stupid sconce which laid him lifeless on the deck, and
not receiving myself a single hurt of consequence.

This victory over the cock of the vile dunghill obtained me respect
among the wretches of whom I formed part, and served to set up my
spirits, which otherwise were flagging; and my position was speedily
made more bearable by the arrival on board our ship of an old
friend. This was no other than my second in the fatal duel which had
sent me thus early out into the world, Captain Fagan. There was a
young nobleman who had a company in our regiment (Gale's foot), and
who, preferring the delights of the Mall and the clubs to the
dangers of a rough campaign, had given Fagan the opportunity of an
exchange; which, as the latter had no fortune but his sword, he was
glad to make. The sergeant was putting us through our exercise on
deck (the seamen and officers of the transport looking grinning on)
when a boat came from the shore bringing our captain to the ship;
and though I started and blushed red as he recognised me--a
descendant of the Barrys--in this degrading posture, I promise you
that the sight of Fagan's face was most welcome to me, for it
assured me that a friend was near me. Before that I was so
melancholy that I would certainly have deserted had I found the
means, and had not the inevitable marines kept a watch to prevent
any such escapes. Fagan gave me a wink of recognition, but offered
no public token of acquaintance; it was not until two days
afterwards, and when we had bidden adieu to old Ireland and were
standing out to sea, that he called me into his cabin, and then,
shaking hands with me cordially, gave me news, which I much wanted,
of my family. 'I had news of you in Dublin,' he said. ''Faith you've
begun early, like your father's son; and I think you could not do
better than as you have done. But why did you not write home to your
poor mother? She has sent a half-dozen letters to you at Dublin.'

I said I had asked for letters at the post-office, but there were
none for Mr. Redmond. I did not like to add that I had been ashamed,
after the first week, to write to my mother.

'We must write to her by the pilot,' said he, 'who will leave us in
two hours; and you can tell her that you are safe, and married to
Brown Bess.' I sighed when he talked about being married; on which
he said with a laugh, 'I see you are thinking of a certain young
lady at Brady's Town.'

'Is Miss Brady well?' said I; and indeed, could hardly utter it, for
I certainly WAS thinking about her: for, though I had forgotten her
in the gaieties of Dublin, I have always found adversity makes man
very affectionate.

'There's only seven Miss Bradys now,' answered Fagan, in a solemn
voice. 'Poor Nora'--

'Good heavens! what of her?' I thought grief had killed her.

'She took on so at your going away that she was obliged to console
herself with a husband. She's now Mrs. John Quin.'

'Mrs. John Quin! Was there ANOTHER Mr. John Quin?' asked I, quite

'No; the very same one, my boy. He recovered from his wound. The
ball you hit him with was not likely to hurt him. It was only made
of tow. Do you think the Bradys would let you kill fifteen hundred a
year out of the family?' And then Fagan further told me that, in
order to get me out of the way--for the cowardly Englishman could
never be brought to marry from fear of me--the plan of the duel had
been arranged. 'But hit him you certainly did, Redmond, and with a
fine thick plugget of tow; and the fellow was so frightened, that he
was an hour in coming to. We told your mother the story afterwards,
and a pretty scene she made; she despatched a half-score of letters
to Dublin after you, but I suppose addressed them to you in your
real name, by which you never thought to ask for them.'

'The coward!' said I (though, I confess, my mind was considerably
relieved at the thoughts of not having killed him). 'And did the
Bradys of Castle Brady consent to admit a poltroon like that into
one of the most ancient and honourable families in the world?'

'He has paid off your uncle's mortgage,' said Fagan; 'he gives Nora
a coach-and-six; he is to sell out, and Lieutenant Ulick Brady of
the Militia is to purchase his company. That coward of a fellow has
been the making of your uncle's family. 'Faith! the business was
well done.' And then, laughing, he told me how Mick and Ulick had
never let him out of their sight, although he was for deserting to
England, until the marriage was completed and the happy couple off
on their road to Dublin. 'Are you in want of cash, my boy?'
continued the good-natured Captain. 'You may draw upon me, for I got
a couple of hundred out of Master Quin for my share, and while they
last you shall never want.'

And so he bade me sit down and write a letter to my mother, which I
did forthwith in very sincere and repentant terms, stating that I
had been guilty of extravagances, that I had not known until that
moment under what a fatal error I had been labouring, and that I had
embarked for Germany as a volunteer. The letter was scarcely
finished when the pilot sang out that he was going on shore; and he
departed, taking with him, from many an anxious fellow besides
myself, our adieux to friends in old Ireland.

Although I was called Captain Barry for many years of my life, and
have been known as such by the first people of Europe, yet I may as
well confess I had no more claim to the title than many a gentleman
who assumes it, and never had a right to an epaulet, or to any
military decoration higher than a corporal's stripe of worsted. I
was made corporal by Fagan during our voyage to the Elbe, and my
rank was confirmed on TERRA FIRMA. I was promised a halbert, too,
and afterwards, perhaps, an ensigncy, if I distinguished myself; but
Fate did not intend that I should remain long an English soldier: as
shall appear presently. Meanwhile, our passage was very favourable;
my adventures were told by Fagan to his brother officers, who
treated me with kindness; and my victory over the big chairman
procured me respect from my comrades of the fore-deck. Encouraged
and strongly exhorted by Fagan, I did my duty resolutely; but,
though affable and good-humoured with the men, I never at first
condescended to associate with such low fellows: and, indeed, was
called generally amongst them 'my Lord.' I believe it was the ex-
link-boy, a facetious knave, who gave me the title; and I felt that
I should become such a rank as well as any peer in the kingdom.

It would require a greater philosopher and historian than I am to
explain the causes of the famous Seven Years' War in which Europe
was engaged; and, indeed, its origin has always appeared to me to be
so complicated, and the books written about it so amazingly hard to
understand, that I have seldom been much wiser at the end of a
chapter than at the beginning, and so shall not trouble my reader
with any personal disquisitions concerning the matter. All I know
is, that after His Majesty's love of his Hanoverian dominions had
rendered him most unpopular in his English kingdom, with Mr. Pitt at
the head of the anti-German war-party, all of a sudden, Mr. Pitt
becoming Minister, the rest of the empire applauded the war as much
as they had hated it before. The victories of Dettingen and Crefeld
were in every-body's mouths, and 'the Protestant hero,' as we used
to call the godless old Frederick of Prussia, was adored by us as a
saint, a very short time after we had been about to make war against
him in alliance with the Empress-queen. Now, somehow, we were on
Frederick's side: the Empress, the French, the Swedes, and the
Russians, were leagued against us; and I remember, when the news of
the battle of Lissa came even to our remote quarter of Ireland, we
considered it as a triumph for the cause of Protestantism, and
illuminated and bonfired, and had a sermon at church, and kept the
Prussian king's birthday; on which my uncle would get drunk: as
indeed on any other occasion. Most of the low fellows enlisted with
myself were, of course, Papists (the English army was filled with
such, out of that never-failing country of ours), and these,
forsooth, were fighting the battles of Protestantism with Frederick;
who was belabouring the Protestant Swedes and the Protestant Saxons,
as well as the Russians of the Greek Church, and the Papist troops
of the Emperor and the King of France. It was against these latter
that the English auxiliaries were employed, and we know that, be the
quarrel what it may, an Englishman and a Frenchman are pretty
willing to make a fight of it.

We landed at Cuxhaven, and before I had been a month in the
Electorate I was transformed into a tall and proper young soldier,
and having a natural aptitude for military exercise, was soon as
accomplished at the drill as the oldest sergeant in the regiment. It
is well, however, to dream of glorious war in a snug arm-chair at
home; ay, or to make it as an officer, surrounded by gentlemen,
gorgeously dressed, and cheered by chances of promotion. But those
chances do not shine on poor fellows in worsted lace: the rough
texture of our red coats made me ashamed when I saw an officer go
by; my soul used to shudder when, on going the rounds, I would hear
their voices as they sat jovially over the mess-table; my pride
revolted at being obliged to plaster my hair with flour and candle-
grease, instead of using the proper pomatum for a gentleman. Yes, my
tastes have always been high and fashionable, and I loathed the
horrid company in which I was fallen. What chances had I of
promotion? None of my relatives had money to buy me a commission,
and I became soon so low-spirited, that I longed for a general
action and a ball to finish me, and vowed that I would take some
opportunity to desert.

When I think that I, the descendant of the kings of Ireland, was
threatened with a caning by a young scoundrel who had just joined
from Eton College--when I think that he offered to make me his
footman, and that I did not, on either occasion, murder him! On the
first occasion I burst into tears (I do not care to own it) and had
serious thoughts of committing suicide, so great was my
mortification. But my kind friend Fagan came to my aid in the
circumstance, with some very timely consolation. 'My poor boy,' said
he, 'you must not take the matter to heart so. Caning is only a
relative disgrace. Young Ensign Fakenham was flogged himself at Eton
School only a month ago: I would lay a wager that his scars are not
yet healed. You must cheer up, my boy; do your duty, be a gentleman,
and no serious harm can fall on you.' And I heard afterwards that my
champion had taken Mr. Fakenham very severely to task for this
threat, and said to him that any such proceedings for the future he
should consider as an insult to himself; whereon the young ensign
was, for the moment, civil. As for the sergeants, I told one of
them, that if any man struck me, no matter who he might be, or what
the penalty, I would take his life. And, 'faith! there was an air of
sincerity in my speech which convinced the whole bevy of them; and
as long as I remained in the English service no rattan was ever laid
on the shoulders of Redmond Barry. Indeed, I was in that savage
moody state, that my mind was quite made up to the point, and I
looked to hear my own dead march played as sure as I was alive. When
I was made a corporal, some of my evils were lessened; I messed with
the sergeants by special favour, and used to treat them to drink,
and lose money to the rascals at play: with which cash my good
friend Mr. Fagan punctually supplied me.

Our regiment, which was quartered about Stade and Luneburg, speedily
got orders to march southwards towards the Rhine, for news came that
our great General, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick, had been defeated-
no, not defeated, but foiled in his attack upon the French under the
Duke of Broglio, at Bergen, near Frankfort-on-the-Main, and had been
obliged to fall back. As the allies retreated the French rushed
forward, and made a bold push for the Electorate of our gracious
monarch in Hanover, threatening that they would occupy it; as they
had done before, when D'Estrees beat the hero of Culloden, the
gallant Duke of Cumberland, and caused him to sign the capitulation
of Closter Zeven. An advance upon Hanover always caused a great
agitation in the Royal bosom of the King of England; more troops
were sent to join us, convoys of treasure were passed over to our
forces, and to our ally's the King of Prussia; and although, in
spite of all assistance, the army under Prince Ferdinand was very
much weaker than that of the invading enemy, yet we had the
advantage of better supplies, one of the greatest Generals in the
world: and, I was going to add, of British valour, but the less we
say about THAT the better. My Lord George Sackville did not exactly
cover himself with laurels at Minden; otherwise there might have
been won there one of the greatest victories of modern times.

Throwing himself between the French and the interior of the
Electorate, Prince Ferdinand wisely took possession of the free town
of Bremen, which he made his storehouse and place of arms; and round
which he gathered all his troops, making ready to fight the famous
battle of Minden.

Were these Memoirs not characterised by truth, and did I deign to
utter a single word for which my own personal experience did not
give me the fullest authority, I might easily make myself the hero
of some strange and popular adventures, and, after the fashion of
novel-writers, introduce my reader to the great characters of this
remarkable time. These persons (I mean the romance-writers), if they
take a drummer or a dustman for a hero, somehow manage to bring him
in contact with the greatest lords and most notorious personages of
the empire; and I warrant me there's not one of them but, in
describing the battle of Minden, would manage to bring Prince
Ferdinand, and my Lord George Sackville, and my Lord Granby, into
presence. It would have been easy for me to have SAID I was present
when the orders were brought to Lord George to charge with the
cavalry and finish the rout of the Frenchmen, and when he refused to
do so, and thereby spoiled the great victory. But the fact is, I was
two miles off from the cavalry when his Lordship's fatal hesitation
took place, and none of us soldiers of the line knew of what had
occurred until we came to talk about the fight over our kettles in
the evening, and repose after the labours of a hard-fought day. I
saw no one of higher rank that day than my colonel and a couple of
orderly officers riding by in the smoke--no one on our side, that
is. A poor corporal (as I then had the, disgrace of being) is not
generally invited into the company of commanders and the great; but,
in revenge, I saw, I promise you, some very good company on the
FRENCH part, for their regiments of Lorraine and Royal Cravate were
charging us all day; and in THAT sort of MELEE high and low are
pretty equally received. I hate bragging, but I cannot help saying
that I made a very close acquaintance with the colonel of the
Cravates; for I drove my bayonet into his body, and finished off a
poor little ensign, so young, slender, and small, that a blow from
my pigtail would have despatched him, I think, in place of the butt
of my musket, with which I clubbed him down. I killed, besides, four
more officers and men, and in the poor ensign's pocket found a purse
of fourteen louis-d'or, and a silver box of sugar-plums; of which
the former present was very agreeable to me. If people would tell
their stories of battles in this simple way, I think the cause of
truth would not suffer by it. All I know of this famous fight of
Minden (except from books) is told here above. The ensign's silver
bon-bon box and his purse of gold; the livid face of the poor fellow
as he fell; the huzzas of the men of my company as I went out under
a smart fire and rifled him; their shouts and curses as we came hand
in hand with the Frenchmen,--these are, in truth, not very dignified
recollections, and had best be passed over briefly. When my kind
friend Fagan was shot, a brother captain, and his very good friend,
turned to Lieutenant Rawson and said, 'Fagan's down; Rawson, there's
your company.' It was all the epitaph my brave patron got. 'I should
have left you a hundred guineas, Redmond,' were his last words to
me, 'but for a cursed run of ill luck last night at faro.' And he
gave me a faint squeeze of the hand; then, as the word was given to
advance, I left him. When we came back to our old ground, which we
presently did, he was lying there still; but he was dead. Some of
our people had already torn off his epaulets, and, no doubt, had
rifled his purse. Such knaves and ruffians do men in war become! It
is well for gentlemen to talk of the age of chivalry; but remember
the starving brutes whom they lead--men nursed in poverty, entirely
ignorant, made to take a pride in deeds of blood--men who can have
no amusement but in drunkenness, debauch, and plunder. It is with
these shocking instruments that your great warriors and kings have
been doing their murderous work in the world; and while, for
instance, we are at the present moment admiring the 'Great
Frederick,' as we call him, and his philosophy, and his liberality,
and his military genius, I, who have served him, and been, as it
were, behind the scenes of which that great spectacle is composed,
can only look at it with horror. What a number of items of human
crime, misery, slavery, go to form that sum-total of glory! I can
recollect a certain day about three weeks after the battle of
Minden, and a farmhouse in which some of us entered; and how the old
woman and her daughters served us, trembling, to wine; and how we
got drunk over the wine, and the house was in a flame, presently;
and woe betide the wretched fellow afterwards who came home to look
for his house and his children!



After the death of my protector, Captain Fagan, I am forced to
confess that I fell into the very worst of courses and company.
Being a rough soldier of fortune himself, he had never been a
favourite with the officers of his regiment; who had a contempt for
Irishmen, as Englishmen sometimes will have, and used to mock his
brogue, and his blunt uncouth manners. I had been insolent to one or
two of them, and had only been screened from punishment by his
intercession; especially his successor, Mr. Rawson, had no liking
for me, and put another man into the sergeant's place vacant in his
company after the battle of Minden. This act of injustice rendered
my service very disagreeable to me; and, instead of seeking to
conquer the dislike of my superiors, and win their goodwill by good
behaviour, I only sought for means to make my situation easier to
me, and grasped at all the amusements in my power. In a foreign
country, with the enemy before us, and the people continually under
contribution from one side or the other, numberless irregularities
were permitted to the troops which would not have been allowed in
more peaceable times. I descended gradually to mix with the
sergeants, and to share their amusements: drinking and gambling
were, I am sorry to say, our principal pastimes; and I fell so
readily into their ways, that though only a young lad of seventeen,
I was the master of them all in daring wickedness; though there were
some among them who, I promise you, were far advanced in the science
of every kind of profligacy. I should have been under the provost-
marshal's hands, for a dead certainty, had I continued much longer
in the army: but an accident occurred which took me out of the
English service in rather a singular manner.

The year in which George II died, our regiment had the honour to be
present at the battle of Warburg (where the Marquis of Granby and
his horse fully retrieved the discredit which had fallen upon the
cavalry since Lord George Sackville's defalcation at Minden), and
where Prince Ferdinand once more completely defeated the Frenchmen.
During the action, my lieutenant, Mr. Fakenham, of Fakenham, the
gentleman who had threatened me, it may be remembered, with the
caning, was struck by a musket-ball in the side. He had shown no
want of courage in this or any other occasion where he had been
called upon to act against the French; but this was his first wound,
and the young gentleman was exceedingly frightened by it. He offered
five guineas to be carried into the town, which was hard by; and I
and another man, taking him up in a cloak, managed to transport him
into a place of decent appearance, where we put him to bed, and
where a young surgeon (who desired nothing better than to take
himself out of the fire of the musketry) went presently to dress his

In order to get into the house, we had been obliged, it must be
confessed, to fire into the locks with our pieces; which summons
brought an inhabitant of the house to the door, a very pretty and
black-eyed young woman, who lived there with her old half-blind
father, a retired Jagdmeister of the Duke of Cassel, hard by. When
the French were in the town, Meinherr's house had suffered like
those of his neighbours; and he was at first exceedingly unwilling
to accommodate his guests. But the first knocking at the door had
the effect of bringing a speedy answer; and Mr. Fakenham, taking a
couple of guineas out of a very full purse, speedily convinced the
people that they had only to deal with a person of honour.

Leaving the doctor (who was very glad to stop) with his patient, who
paid me the stipulated reward, I was returning to my regiment with
my other comrade--after having paid, in my German jargon, some
deserved compliments to the black-eyed beauty of Warburg, and
thinking, with no small envy, how comfortable it would be to be
billeted there--when the private who was with me cut short my
reveries by suggesting that we should divide the five guineas the
lieutenant had given me.

'There is your share,' said I, giving the fellow one piece; which
was plenty, as I was the leader of the expedition. But he swore a
dreadful oath that he would have half; and when I told him to go to
a quarter which I shall not name, the fellow, lifting his musket,
hit me a blow with the butt-end of it, which sent me lifeless to the
ground: when I awoke from my> trance, I found myself bleeding with a
large wound in the head, and had barely time to stagger back to the
house where I had left the lieutenant, when I again fell fainting at
the door.

Here I must have been discovered by the surgeon on his issuing out;
for when I awoke a second time I found myself in the ground-floor of
the house, supported by the black-eyed girl, while the surgeon was
copiously bleeding me at the arm. There was another bed in the room
where the lieutenant had been laid,--it was that occupied by Gretel,
the servant; while Lischen, as my fair one was called, had, till
now, slept in the couch where the wounded officer lay.

'Who are you putting into that bed?' said he languidly, in German;
for the ball had been extracted from his side with much pain and
loss of blood.

They told him it was the corporal who had brought him.

'A corporal?' said he, in English; 'turn him out.' And you may be
sure I felt highly complimented by the words. But we were both too
faint to compliment or to abuse each other much, and I was put to
bed carefully; and, on being undressed, had an opportunity to find
that my pockets had been rifled by the English soldier after he had
knocked me down. However, I was in good quarters: the young lady who
sheltered me presently brought me a refreshing drink; and, as I took
it, I could not help pressing the kind hand that gave it me; nor, in
truth, did this token of my gratitude seem unwelcome.

This intimacy did not decrease with further acquaintance. I found
Lischen the tenderest of nurses. Whenever any delicacy was to be
provided for the wounded lieutenant, a share was always sent to the
bed opposite his, and to the avaricious man's no small annoyance.
His illness was long. On the second day the fever declared itself;
for some nights he was delirious; and I remember it was when a
commanding officer was inspecting our quarters, with an intention,
very likely, of billeting himself on the house, that the howling and
mad words of the patient overhead struck him, and he retired rather
frightened. I had been sitting up very comfortably in the lower
apartment, for my hurt was quite subsided; and it was only when the
officer asked me, with a rough voice, why I was not at my regiment,
that I began to reflect how pleasant my quarters were to me, and
that I was much better here than crawling under an odious tent with
a parcel of tipsy soldiers, or going the night-rounds or rising long
before daybreak for drill.

The delirium of Mr. Fakenham gave me a hint, and I determined
forthwith to GO MAD. There was a poor fellow about Brady's Town
called 'Wandering Billy,' whose insane pranks I had often mimicked
as a lad, and I again put them in practice. That night I made an
attempt upon Lischen, saluting her with a yell and a grin which
frightened her almost out of her wits; and when anybody came I was
raving. The blow on the head had disordered my brain; the doctor was
ready to vouch for this fact. One night I whispered to him that I
was Julius Caesar, and considered him to be my affianced wife Queen
Cleopatra, which convinced him of my insanity. Indeed, if Her
Majesty had been like my Aesculapius, she must have had a carroty
beard, such as is rare in Egypt.

A movement on the part of the French speedily caused an advance on
our part. The town was evacuated, except by a few Prussian troops,
whose surgeons were to visit the wounded in the place; and, when we
were well, we were to be drafted to our regiments. I determined that
I never would join mine again. My intention was to make for Holland,
almost the only neutral country of Europe in those times, and thence
to get a passage somehow to England, and home to dear old Brady's

If Mr. Fakenham is now alive, I here tender him my apologies for my
conduct to him. He was very rich; he used me very ill. I managed to
frighten away his servant who came to attend him after the affair of
Warburg, and from that time would sometimes condescend to wait upon
the patient, who always treated me with scorn; but it was my object
to have him alone, and I bore his brutality with the utmost civility
and mildness, meditating in my own mind a very pretty return for all
his favours to me. Nor was I the only person in the house to whom
the worthy gentleman was uncivil. He ordered the fair Lischen hither
and thither, made impertinent love to her, abused her soups,
quarrelled with her omelettes, and grudged the money which was laid
out for his maintenance; so that our hostess detested him as much
as, I think, without vanity, she regarded me.

For, if the truth must be told, I had made very deep love to her
during my stay under her roof; as is always my way with women, of
whatever age or degree of beauty. To a man who has to make his way
in the world, these dear girls can always be useful in one fashion
or another; never mind, if they repel your passion; at any rate,
they are not offended with your declaration of it, and only look
upon you with more favourable eyes in consequence of your
misfortune. As for Lischen, I told her such a pathetic story of my
life (a tale a great deal more romantic than that here narrated,--
for I did not restrict myself to the exact truth in that history, as
in these pages I am bound to do), that I won the poor girl's heart
entirely, and, besides, made considerable progress in the German
language under her instruction. Do not think me very cruel and
heartless, ladies; this heart of Lischen's was like many a town in
the neighbourhood in which she dwelt, and had been stormed and
occupied several times before I came to invest it; now mounting
French colours, now green and yellow Saxon, now black and white
Prussian, as the case may be. A lady who sets her heart upon a lad
in uniform must prepare to change lovers pretty quickly, or her life
will be but a sad one.

The German surgeon who attended us after the departure of the
English only condescended to pay our house a visit twice during my
residence; and I took care, for a reason I had, to receive him in a
darkened room, much to the annoyance of Mr. Fakenham, who lay there:
but I said the light affected my eyes dreadfully since my blow on
the head; and so I covered up my head with clothes when the doctor
came, and told him that I was an Egyptian mummy, or talked to him
some insane nonsense, in order to keep up my character.

'What is that nonsense you were talking about an Egyptian mummy,
fellow?' asked Mr. Fakenham peevishly.

'Oh! you'll know soon, sir,' said I.

The next time that I expected the doctor to come, instead of
receiving him in a darkened room, with handkerchiefs muffled, I took
care to be in the lower room, and was having a game at cards with
Lischen as the surgeon entered. I had taken possession of a
dressing-jacket of the lieutenant's, and some other articles of his
wardrobe, which fitted me pretty well; and, I flatter myself, was no
ungentlemanlike figure.

'Good-morrow, Corporal,' said the doctor, rather gruffly, in reply
to my smiling salute.

'Corporal! Lieutenant, if you please,' answered I, giving an arch
look at Lischen, whom I had instructed in my plot.

'How lieutenant?' asked the surgeon. 'I thought the lieutenant was'--

'Upon my word, you do me great honour,' cried I, laughing; 'you
mistook me for the mad corporal upstairs. The fellow has once or
twice pretended to be an officer, but my kind hostess here can
answer which is which.'

'Yesterday he fancied he was Prince Ferdinand,' said Lischen; 'the
day you came he said he was an Egyptian mummy.'

'So he did,' said the doctor; 'I remember; but, ha! ha! do you know,
Lieutenant, I have in my notes made a mistake in you two?'

'Don't talk to me about his malady; he is calm now.'

Lischen and I laughed at this error as at the most ridiculous thing
in the world; and when the surgeon went up to examine his patient, I
cautioned him not to talk to him about the subject of his malady,
for he was in a very excited state.

The reader will be able to gather from the above conversation what
my design really was. I was determined to escape, and to escape
under the character of Lieutenant Fakenham; taking it from him to
his face, as it were, and making use of it to meet my imperious
necessity. It was forgery and robbery, if you like; for I took all
his money and clothes,--I don't care to conceal it; but the need was
so urgent, that I would do so again: and I knew I could not effect
my escape without his purse, as well as his name. Hence it became my
duty to take possession of one and the other.

As the lieutenant lay still in bed upstairs, I did not hesitate at
all about assuming his uniform, especially after taking care to
inform myself from the doctor whether any men of ours who might know
me were in the town. But there were none that I could hear of; and
so I calmly took my walks with Madame Lischen, dressed in the
lieutenant's uniform, made inquiries as to a horse that I wanted to
purchase, reported myself to the commandant of the place as
Lieutenant Fakenham, of Gale's English regiment of foot,
convalescent, and was asked to dine with the officers of the
Prussian regiment at a very sorry mess they had. How Fakenham would
have stormed and raged, had he known the use I was making of his

Whenever that worthy used to inquire about his clothes, which he did
with many oaths and curses that he would have me caned at the
regiment for inattention, I, with a most respectful air, informed
him that they were put away in perfect safety below; and, in fact,
had them very neatly packed, and ready for the day when I proposed
to depart. His papers and money, however, he kept under his pillow;
and, as I had purchased a horse, it became necessary to pay for it.

At a certain hour, then, I ordered the animal to be brought round,
when I would pay the dealer for him. (I shall pass over my adieux
with my kind hostess, which were very tearful indeed). And then,
making up my mind to the great action, walked upstairs to Fakenham's
room attired in his full regimentals, and with his hat cocked over
my left eye.

'You gWeat scoundWel!' said he, with a multiplicity of oaths; 'you
mutinous dog! what do you mean by dWessing yourself in my
Wegimentals? As sure as my name's Fakenham, when we get back to the
Wegiment, I'll have your soul cut out of your body.'

'I'm promoted, Lieutenant,' said I, with a sneer. 'I'm come to take
my leave of you;' and then going up to his bed, I said, 'I intend to
have your papers and purse.' With this I put my hand under his
pillow; at which he gave a scream that might have called the whole
garrison about my ears. 'Hark ye, sir!' said I, 'no more noise, or
you are a dead man!' and taking a handkerchief, I bound it tight
around his mouth so as well-nigh to throttle him, and, pulling
forward the sleeves of his shirt, tied them in a knot together, and
so left him; removing the papers and the purse, you may be sure, and
wishing him politely a good day.

'It is the mad corporal,' said I to the people down below who were
attracted by the noise from the sick man's chamber; and so taking
leave of the old blind Jagdmeister, and an adieu (I will not say how
tender) of his daughter, I mounted my newly purchased animal; and,
as I pranced away, and the sentinels presented arms to me at the
town-gates, felt once more that I was in my proper sphere, and
determined never again to fall from the rank of a gentleman.

I took at first the way towards Bremen, where our army was, and gave
out that I was bringing reports and letters from the Prussian
commandant of Warburg to headquarters; but, as soon as I got out of
sight of the advanced sentinels, I turned bridle and rode into the
Hesse-Cassel territory, which is luckily not very far from Warburg:
and I promise you I was very glad to see the blue-and-red stripes on
the barriers, which showed me that I was out of the land occupied by
our countrymen. I rode to Hof, and the next day to Cassel, giving
out that I was the bearer of despatches to Prince Henry, then on the
Lower Rhine, and put up at the best hotel of the place, where the
field-officers of the garrison had their ordinary. These gentlemen I
treated to the best wines that the house afforded, for I was
determined to keep up the character of the English gentleman, and I
talked to them about my English estates with a fluency that almost
made me believe in the stories which I invented. I was even asked to
an assembly at Wilhelmshohe, the Elector's palace, and danced a
minuet there with the Hofmarshal's lovely daughter, and lost a few
pieces to his excellency the first huntmaster of his Highness.

At our table at the inn there was a Prussian officer who treated me
with great civility, and asked me a thousand questions about
England; which I answered as best I might. But this best, I am bound
to say, was bad enough. I knew nothing about England, and the Court,
and the noble families there; but, led away by the vaingloriousness
of youth (and a propensity which I possessed in my early days, but
of which I have long since corrected myself, to boast and talk in a
manner not altogether consonant with truth), I invented a thousand
stories which I told him; described the King and the Ministers to
him, said the British Ambassador at Berlin was my uncle, and
promised my acquaintance a letter of recommendation to him. When the
officer asked me my uncle's name, I was not able to give him the
real name, and so said his name was O'Grady: it is as good a name as
any other, and those of Kilballyowen, county Cork, are as good a
family as any in the world, as I have heard. As for stories about my
regiment, of these, of course, I had no lack. I wish my other
histories had been equally authentic.

On the morning I left Cassel, my Prussian friend came to me with an
open smiling countenance, and said he, too, was bound for
Dusseldorf, whither I said my route lay; and so laying our horses'
heads together we jogged on. The country was desolate beyond
description. The prince in whose dominions we were was known to be
the most ruthless seller of men in Germany. He would sell to any
bidder, and during the five years which the war (afterwards called
the Seven Years' War) had now lasted, had so exhausted the males of
his principality, that the fields remained untilled: even the
children of twelve years old were driven off to the war, and I saw
herds of these wretches marching forwards, attended by a few
troopers, now under the guidance of a red-coated Hanovarian
sergeant, now with a Prussian sub-officer accompanying them; with
some of whom my companion exchanged signs of recognition.

'It hurts my feelings,' said he, 'to be obliged to commune with such
wretches; but the stern necessities of war demand men continually,
and hence these recruiters whom you see market in human flesh. They
get five-and-twenty dollars from our Government for every man they
bring in. For fine men--for men like you,' he added, laughing, 'we
would go as high as a hundred. In the old King's time we would have
given a thousand for you, when he had his giant regiment that our
present monarch disbanded.'

'I knew one of them,' said I, 'who served with you: we used to call
him Morgan Prussia.'

'Indeed; and who was this Morgan Prussia?'

'Why, a huge grenadier of ours, who was somehow snapped up in
Hanover by some of your recruiters.'

'The rascals!' said my friend: 'and did they dare take an

''Faith this was an Irishman, and a great deal too sharp for them;
as you shall hear. Morgan was taken, then, and drafted into the
giant guard, and was the biggest man almost among all the giants
there. Many of these monsters used to complain of their life, and
their caning, and their long drills, and their small pay; but Morgan
was not one of the grumblers. "It's a deal better," said he, "to get
fat here in Berlin, than to starve in rags in Tipperary!"'

'Where is Tipperary?' asked my companion.

'That is exactly what Morgan's friends asked him. It is a beautiful
district in Ireland, the capital of which is the magnificent city of
Clonmel: a city, let me tell you, sir, only inferior to Dublin and
London, and far more sumptuous than any on the Continent. Well,
Morgan said that his birthplace was near that city, and the only
thing which caused him unhappiness, in his present situation, was
the thought that his brothers were still starving at home, when they
might be so much better off in His Majesty's service.

'"'Faith," says Morgan to the sergeant, to whom he imparted the
information, "it's my brother Bin that would make the fine sergeant
of the guards, entirely!"

'"Is Ben as tall as you are?" asked the sergeant.

'"As tall as ME, is it? Why, man, I'm the shortest of my family!
There's six more of us, but Bin's the biggest of all. Oh! out and
out the biggest. Seven feet in his stockin-FUT, as sure as my name's

'"Can't we send and fetch them over, these brothers of yours?"

'"Not you. Ever since I was seduced by one of you gentlemen of the
cane, they've a mortal aversion to all sergeants," answered Morgan:
"but it's a pity they cannot come, too. What a monster Bin would be
in a grenadier's cap!"

'He said nothing more at the time regarding his brothers, but only
sighed as if lamenting their hard fate. However, the story was told
by the sergeant to the officers, and by the officers to the King
himself; and His Majesty was so inflamed by curiosity, that he
actually consented to let Morgan go home in order to bring back with
him his seven enormous brothers.'

'And were they as big as Morgan pretended?' asked my comrade. I
could not help laughing at his simplicity.

'Do you suppose,' cried I, 'that Morgan ever came back? No, no; once
free, he was too wise for that. He has bought a snug farm in
Tipperary with the money that was given him to secure his brothers;
and I fancy few men of the guards ever profited so much by it.'

The Prussian captain laughed exceedingly at this story, said that
the English were the cleverest nation in the world, and, on my
setting him right, agreed that the Irish were even more so. We rode
on very well pleased with each other; for he had a thousand stories
of the war to tell, of the skill and gallantry of Frederick, and the
thousand escapes, and victories, and defeats scarcely less glorious
than victories, through which the King had passed. Now that I was a
gentleman, I could listen with admiration to these tales: and yet
the sentiment recorded at the end of the last chapter was uppermost
in my mind but three weeks back, when I remembered that it was the
great general got the glory, and the poor soldier only insult and
the cane.

'By the way, to whom are you taking despatches?' asked the officer.

It was another ugly question, which I determined to answer at hap-
hazard; and so I said 'To General Rolls.' I had seen the general a
year before, and gave the first name in my head. My friend was quite
satisfied with it, and we continued our ride until evening came on;
and our horses being weary, it was agreed that we should come to a

'There is a very good inn,' said the Captain, as we rode up to what
appeared to me a very lonely-looking place.

'This may be a very good inn for Germany,' said I, 'but it would not
pass in old Ireland. Corbach is only a league off: let us push on
for Corbach.'

'Do you want to see the loveliest woman in Europe?' said the
officer. 'Ah! you sly rogue, I see THAT will influence you;' and,
truth to say, such a proposal WAS always welcome to me, as I don't
care to own. 'The people are great farmers,' said the Captain, 'as
well as innkeepers;' and, indeed, the place seemed more a farm than
an inn yard. We entered by a great gate into a Court walled round,
and at one end of which was the building, a dingy ruinous place. A
couple of covered waggens were in the court, their horses were
littered under a shed hard by, and lounging about the place were
some men and a pair of sergeants in the Prussian uniform, who both
touched their hats to my friend the Captain. This customary
formality struck me as nothing extraordinary, but the aspect of the
inn had something exceedingly chilling and forbidding in it, and I
observed the men shut to the great yard-gates as soon as we were
entered. Parties of French horsemen, the Captain said, were about
the country, and one could not take too many precautions against
such villains.

We went into supper, after the two sergeants had taken charge of our
horses; the Captain, also, ordering one of them to take my valise to
my bedroom. I promised the worthy fellow a glass of schnapps for his

A dish of fried eggs-and-bacon was ordered from a hideous old wench
that came to serve us, in place of the lovely creature I had
expected to see; and the Captain, laughing, said, 'Well, our meal is
a frugal one, but a soldier has many a time a worse:' and, taking
off his hat, sword-belt, and gloves, with great ceremony, he sat
down to eat. I would not be behindhand with him in politeness, and
put my weapon securely on the old chest of drawers where his was

The hideous old woman before mentioned brought us in a pot of very
sour wine, at which and at her ugliness I felt a considerable ill-

'Where's the beauty you promised me?' said I, as soon as the old hag
had left the room.

'Bah!' said he, laughing, and looking hard at me: 'it was my joke. I
was tired, and did not care to go farther. There's no prettier woman
here than that. If she won't suit your fancy, my friend, you must
wait a while.'

This increased my ill-humour.

'Upon my word, sir,' said I sternly, 'I think you have acted very

'I have acted as I think fit!' replied the captain.

'Sir,' said I, 'I'm a British officer!'

'It's a lie!' roared the other, 'you're a DESERTER! You're an
impostor, sir; I have known you for such these three hours. I
suspected you yesterday. My men heard of a man escaping from
Warburg, and I thought you were the man. Your lies and folly have
confirmed me. You pretend to carry despatches to a general who has
been dead these ten months: you have an uncle who is an ambassador,
and whose name forsooth you don't know. Will you join and take the
bounty, sir; or will you be given up?'

'Neither!' said I, springing at him like a tiger. But, agile as I
was, he was equally on his guard. He took two pistols out of his
pocket, fired one off, and said, from the other end of the table
where he stood dodging me, as it were,--

'Advance a step, and I send this bullet into your brains!' In
another minute the door was flung open, and the two sergeants
entered, armed with musket and bayonet to aid their comrade.

The game was up. I flung down a knife with which I had armed myself;
for the old hag on bringing in the wine had removed my sword.

'I volunteer,' said I.

'That's my good fellow. What name shall I put on my list?'

'Write Redmond Barry of Bally Barry,' said I haughtily; 'a
descendant of the Irish kings!'

'I was once with the Irish brigade, Roche's,' said the recruiter,
sneering, 'trying if I could get any likely fellows among the few
countrymen of yours that are in the brigade, and there was scarcely
one of them that was not descended from the kings of Ireland.'

'Sir,' said I, 'king or not, I am a gentleman, as you can see.'

'Oh! you will find plenty more in our corps,' answered the Captain,
still in the sneering mood. 'Give up your papers, Mr. Gentleman, and
let us see who you really are.'

As my pocket-book contained some bank-notes as well as papers of Mr.
Fakenham's, I was not willing to give up my property; suspecting
very rightly that it was but a scheme on the part of the Captain to
get and keep it.

'It can matter very little to you,' said I, 'what my private papers
are: I am enlisted under the name of Redmond Barry.'

'Give it up, sirrah!' said the Captain, seizing his cane.

'I will not give it up!' answered I.

'HOUND! do you mutiny?' screamed he, and, at the same time, gave me
a lash across the face with the cane, which had the anticipated
effect of producing a struggle. I dashed forward to grapple with
him, the two sergeants flung themselves on me, I was thrown to the
ground and stunned again; being hit on my former wound in the head.
It was bleeding severely when I came to myself, my laced coat was
already torn off my back, my purse and papers gone, and my hands
tied behind my back.

The great and illustrious Frederick had scores of these white slave-
dealers all round the frontiers of his kingdom, debauching troops or
kidnapping peasants, and hesitating at no crime to supply those
brilliant regiments of his with food for powder; and I cannot help
telling here, with some satisfaction, the fate which ultimately
befell the atrocious scoundrel who, violating all the rights of
friendship and good-fellowship, had just succeeded in entrapping me.
This individual was a person of high family and known talents and
courage, but who had a propensity to gambling and extravagance, and
found his calling as a recruit-decoy far more profitable to him than
his pay of second captain in the line. The sovereign, too, probably
found his services more useful in the former capacity. His name was
Monsieur de Galgenstein, and he was one of the most successful of
the practisers of his rascally trade. He spoke all languages, and
knew all countries, and hence had no difficulty in finding out the
simple braggadocio of a young lad like me.

About 1765, however, he came to his justly merited end. He was at
this time living at Kehl, opposite Strasburg, and used to take his
walk upon the bridge there, and get into conversation with the
French advanced sentinels; to whom he was in the habit of promising
'mountains and marvels,' as the French say, if they would take
service in Prussia. One day there was on the bridge a superb
grenadier, whom Galgenstein accosted, and to whom he promised a
company, at least, if he would enlist under Frederick.

'Ask my comrade yonder,' said the grenadier; 'I can do nothing
without him. We were born and bred together, we are of the same
company, sleep in the same room, and always go in pairs. If he will
go and you will give him a captaincy, I will go too.'

'Bring your comrade over to Kehl,' said Galgenstein, delighted. 'I
will give you the best of dinners, and can promise to satisfy both
of you.'

'Had you not better speak to him on the bridge?' said the grenadier.
'I dare not leave my post; but you have but to pass, and talk over
the matter.'

Galgenstein, after a little parley, passed the sentinel; but
presently a panic took him, and he retraced his steps. But the
grenadier brought his bayonet to the Prussian's breast and bade him
stand: that he was his prisoner.

The Prussian, however, seeing his danger, made a bound across the
bridge and into the Rhine; whither, flinging aside his musket, the
intrepid sentry followed him. The Frenchman was the better swimmer
of the two, seized upon the recruiter, and bore him to the Strasburg
side of the stream, where he gave him up.

'You deserve to be shot,' said the general to him, 'for abandoning
your post and arms; but you merit reward for an act of courage and
daring. The King prefers to reward you,' and the man received money
and promotion.

As for Galgenstein, he declared his quality as a nobleman and a
captain in the Prussian service, and applications were made to
Berlin to know if his representations were true. But the King,
though he employed men of this stamp (officers to seduce the
subjects of his allies) could not acknowledge his own shame. Letters
were written back from Berlin to say that such a family existed in
the kingdom, but that the person representing himself to belong to
it must be an impostor, for every officer of the name was at his
regiment and his post. It was Galgenstein's death-warrant, and he
was hanged as a spy in Strasburg.

'Turn him into the cart with the rest,' said he, as soon as I awoke
from my trance.



The covered waggon to which I was ordered to march was standing, as
I have said, in the courtyard of the farm, with another dismal
vehicle of the same kind hard by it. Each was pretty well filled
with a crew of men, whom the atrocious crimp who had seized upon me,
had enlisted under the banners of the glorious Frederick; and I
could see by the lanterns of the sentinels, as they thrust me into
the straw, a dozen dark figures huddled together in the horrible
moving prison where I was now to be confined. A scream and a curse
from my opposite neighbour showed me that he was most likely
wounded, as I myself was; and, during the whole of the wretched
night, the moans and sobs of the poor fellows in similar captivity
kept up a continual painful chorus, which effectually prevented my
getting any relief from my ills in sleep. At midnight (as far as I
could judge) the horses were put to the waggons, and the creaking
lumbering machines were put in motion. A couple of soldiers,
strongly armed, sat on the outer bench of the cart, and their grim
faces peered in with their lanterns every now and then through the
canvas curtains, that they might count the number of their
prisoners. The brutes were half-drunk, and were singing love and war
songs, such as 'O Gretchen mein Taubchen, mein Herzenstrompet, Mein
Kanon, mein Heerpauk und meine Musket,' 'Prinz Eugen der edle
Ritter.' and the like; their wild whoops and jodels making doleful
discord with the groans of us captives within the waggons. Many a
time afterwards have I heard these ditties sung on the march, or in
the barrack-room, or round the fires as we lay out at night.

I was not near so unhappy, in spite of all, as I had been on my
first enlisting in Ireland. At least, thought I, if I am degraded to
be a private soldier there will be no one of my acquaintance who
will witness my shame; and that is the point which I have always
cared for most. There will be no one to say, 'There is young Redmond
Barry, the descendant or the Barrys, the fashionable young blood of
Dublin, pipeclaying his belt and carrying his brown Bess.' Indeed,
but for that opinion of the world, with which it is necessary that
every man of spirit should keep upon equal terms, I, for my part,
would have always been contented with the humblest portion. Now
here, to all intents and purposes, one was as far removed from the
world as in the wilds of Siberia, or in Robinson Crusoe's Island.
And I reasoned with myself thus:--'Now you are caught, there is no
use in repining: make the best of your situation, and get all the
pleasure you can out of it. There are a thousand opportunities of
plunder, &c., offered to the soldier in war-time, out of which he
can get both pleasure and profit: make use of these, and be happy.
Besides, you are extraordinarily brave, handsome, and clever: and
who knows but you may procure advancement in your new service?'

In this philosophical way I looked at my misfortunes, determining
not to be cast down by them; and bore woes and my broken head with
perfect magnanimity. The latter was, for the moment, an evil against
which it required no small powers of endurance to contend; for the
jolts of the waggon were dreadful, and every shake caused a throb in
my brain which I thought would have split my skull. As the morning
dawned, I saw that the man next me, a gaunt yellow-haired creature,
in black, had a cushion of straw under his head.

'Are you wounded, comrade?' said I.

'Praised be the Lord,' said he, 'I am sore hurt in spirit and body,
and bruised in many members; wounded, however, am I not. And you,
poor youth?'

'I am wounded in the head,' said I, 'and I want your pillow: give it
me--I've a clasp-knife in my pocket!' and with this I gave him a
terrible look, meaning to say (and mean it I did, for look you, A LA
GUERRE C'EST A LA GUERRE, and I am none of your milksops) that,
unless he yielded me the accommodation, I would give him a taste of
my steel.

'I would give it thee without any threat, friend,' said the yellow-
haired man meekly, and handed me over his little sack of straw.

He then leaned himself back as comfortably as he could against the
cart, and began repeating, 'Ein' feste Burg ist unser Gott,' by
which I concluded that I had got into the company of a parson. With
the jolts of the waggon, and accidents of the journey, various more
exclamations and movements of the passengers showed what a motley
company we were. Every now and then a countryman would burst into
tears; a French voice would be heard to say, 'O mon Dieu!--mon
Dieu!' a couple more of the same nation were jabbering oaths and
chattering incessantly; and a certain allusion to his own and
everybody else's eyes, which came from a stalwart figure at the far
corner, told me that there was certainly an Englishman in our crew.

But I was spared soon the tedium and discomforts of the journey. In
spite of the clergyman's cushion, my head, which was throbbing with
pain, was brought abruptly in contact with the side of the waggon;
it began to bleed afresh: I became almost light-headed. I only
recollect having a draught of water here and there; once stopping at
a fortified town, where an officer counted us:--all the rest of the
journey was passed in a drowsy stupor, from which, when I awoke, I
found myself lying in a hospital bed, with a nun in a white hood
watching over me.

'They are in sad spiritual darkness,' said a voice from the bed next
to me, when the nun had finished her kind offices and retired: 'they
are in the night of error, and yet there is the light of faith in
those poor creatures.'

It was my comrade of the crimp waggon, his huge broad face looming
out from under a white nightcap, and ensconced in the bed beside.

'What! you there, Herr Pastor?' said I.

'Only a candidate, sir,' answered the white nightcap. 'But, praised
be Heaven! you have come to. You have had a wild time of it. You
have been talking in the English language (with which I am
acquainted) of Ireland, and a young lady, and Mick, and of another
young lady, and of a house on fire, and of the British Grenadiers,
concerning whom you sung us parts of a ballad, and of a number of
other matters appertaining, no doubt, to your personal history.'

'It has been a very strange one,' said I; 'and, perhaps, there is no
man in the world, of my birth, whose misfortunes can at all be
compared to mine.'

I do not object to own that I am disposed to brag of my birth and
other acquirements; for I have always found that if a man does not
give himself a good word, his friends will not do it for him.

'Well,' said my fellow-patient, 'I have no doubt yours is a strange
tale, and shall be glad to hear it anon; but at present you must not
be permitted to speak much, for your fever has been long, and your
exhaustion great.'

'Where are we?' I asked; and the candidate informed me that we were
in the bishopric and town of Fulda, at present occupied by Prince
Henry's troops. There had been a skirmish with an out-party of
French near the town, in which a shot entering the waggon, the poor
candidate had been wounded.

As the reader knows already my history, I will not take the trouble
to repeat it here, or to give the additions with which I favoured my
comrade in misfortune. But I confess that I told him ours was the
greatest family and finest palace in Ireland, that we were
enormously wealthy, related to all the peerage descended from the
ancient kings, &c.; and, to my surprise, in the course of our
conversation, I found that my interlocutor knew a great deal more
about Ireland than I did. When, for instance, I spoke of my

'From which race of kings?' said he.

'Oh!' said I (for my memory for dates was never very accurate),
'from the old ancient kings of all.'

'What! can you trace your origin to the sons Japhet?' said he.

''Faith, I can,' answered I, 'and farther too,--Nebuchadnezzar, if
you like.'

'I see,' said the candidate, smiling, 'that you look upon those
legends with incredulity. These Partholans and Nemedians, of whom
your writers fondly make mention, cannot be authentically vouched
for in history. Nor do I believe that we have any more foundation
for the tales concerning them, than for the legends relative to
Joseph of Arimathea and King Bruce which prevailed two centuries
back in the sister island.

And then he began a discourse about the Phoenicians, the Scyths or
Goths, the Tuath de Danans, Tacitus, and King MacNeil; which was, to
say the truth, the very first news I had heard of those personages.
As for English, he spoke it as well as I, and had seven more
languages, he said, equally at his command; for, on my quoting the
only Latin line that I knew, that out of the poet Homer, which

'As in praesenti perfectum fumat in avi,'

he began to speak to me in the Roman tongue; on which I was fain to
tell him that we pronounced it in a different way in Ireland, and so
got off the conversation.

My honest friend's history was a curious one, and it may be told
here in order to show of what motley materials our levies were

'I am,' said he, 'a Saxon by birth, my father being pastor of the
village of Pfannkuchen, where I imbibed the first rudiments of
knowledge. At sixteen (I am now twenty-three), having mastered the
Greek and Latin tongues, with the French, English, Arabic, and
Hebrew; and having come into possession of a legacy of a hundred
rixdalers, a sum amply sufficient to defray my University courses, I
went to the famous academy of Gottingen, where I devoted four years
to the exact sciences and theology. Also, I learned what worldly
accomplishments I could command; taking a dancing-tutor at the
expense of a groschen a lesson, a course of fencing from a French
practitioner, and attending lectures on the great horse and the
equestrian science at the hippodrome of a celebrated cavalry
professor. My opinion is, that a man should know everything as far
as in his power lies: that he should complete his cycle of
experience; and, one science being as necessary as another, it
behoves him.

'I am not of a saving turn, hence my little fortune of a hundred
rixdalers, which has served to keep many a prudent man for a score
of years, barely sufficed for five years' studies; after which my
studies were interrupted, my pupils fell off, and I was obliged to
devote much time to shoe-binding in order to save money, and, at a
future period, resume my academic course. During this period I
contracted an attachment' (here the candidate sighed a little) 'with
a person, who, though not beautiful, and forty years of age, is yet
likely to sympathise with my existence; and, a month since, my kind
friend and patron, University Prorector Doctor Nasenbrumm, having
informed me that the Pfarrer of Rumpelwitz was dead, asked whether I
would like to have my name placed upon the candidate list, and if I
were minded to preach a trial sermon? As the gaining of this living
would further my union with my Amalia, I joyously consented, and
prepared a discourse.

'If you like I will recite it to you--No?--Well, I will give you
extracts from it upon our line of march. To proceed, then, with my
biographical sketch, which is now very near a conclusion; or, as I
should more correctly say, which has very nearly brought me to the
present period of time: I preached that sermon at Rumpelwitz, in
which I hope that the Babylonian question was pretty satisfactorily
set at rest. I preached it before the Herr Baron and his noble
family, and some officers of distinction who were staying at his
castle. Mr. Doctor Moser of Halle followed me in the evening
discourse; but, though his exercise was learned, and he disposed of
a passage of Ignatius, which he proved to be a manifest
interpolation, I do not think his sermon had the effect which mine
produced, and that the Rumpelwitzers much relished it. After the
sermon, all the candidates walked out of church together, and supped
lovingly at the "Blue Stag" in Rumpelwitz.

'While so occupied, a waiter came in and said that a person without
wished to speak to one of the reverend candidates, "the tall one."
This could only mean me, for I was a head and shoulders higher than
any other reverend gentleman present. I issued out to see who was
the person desiring to hold converse with me, and found a man whom I
had no difficulty in recognising as one of the Jewish persuasion.

'"Sir," said this Hebrew, "I have heard from a friend, who was in
your church to-day, the heads of the admirable discourse you
pronounced there. It has affected me deeply, most deeply. There are
only one or two points on which I am yet in doubt, and if your
honour could but condescend to enlighten me on these, I think--I
think Solomon Hirsch would be a convert to your eloquence."

'"What are these points, my good friend?" said I; and I pointed out
to him the twenty-four heads of my sermon, asking him in which of
these his doubts lay.

'We had been walking up and down before the inn while our
conversation took place, but the windows being open, and my comrades
having heard the discourse in the morning, requested me, rather
peevishly, not to resume it at that period. I, therefore, moved on
with my disciple, and, at his request, began at once the sermon; for
my memory is good for anything, and I can repeat any book I have
read thrice.

'I poured out, then, under the trees, and in the calm moonlight,
that discourse which I had pronounced under the blazing sun of noon.
My Israelite only interrupted me by exclamations indicative of
surprise, assent, admiration, and increasing conviction.
"Prodigious!" said he;--"Wunderschon!" would he remark at the
conclusion of some eloquent passage; in a word, he exhausted the
complimentary interjections of our language: and to compliments what
man is averse? I think we must have walked two miles when I got to
my third head and my companion begged I would enter his house, which
we now neared, and partake of a glass of beer; to which I was never

'That house, sir, was the inn at which you, too, if I judge aright,
were taken. No sooner was I in the place, than three crimps rushed
upon me, told me I was a deserter, and their prisoner, and called
upon me to deliver up my money and papers; which I did with a solemn
protest as to my sacred character. They consisted of my sermon in
MS., Prorector Nasenbrumm's recommendatory letter, proving my
identity, and three groschen four pfennigs in bullion. I had already
been in the cart twenty hours when you reached the house. The French
officer, who lay opposite you (he who screamed when you trod on his
foot, for he was wounded), was brought in shortly before your
arrival. He had been taken with his epaulets and regimentals, and
declared his quality and rank; but he was alone (I believe it was
some affair of love with a Hessian lady which caused him to be
unattended); and as the persons into whose hands he fell will make
more profit of him as a recruit than as a prisoner, he is made to
share our fate. He is not the first by many scores so captured. One
of M. de Soubise's cooks, and three actors out of a troop in the
French camp, several deserters from your English troops (the men are
led away by being told that there is no flogging in the Prussian
service), and three Dutchmen were taken besides.'

'And you,' said I--'you who were just on the point of getting a
valuable living,--you who have so much learning, are you not
indignant at the outrage?'

'I am a Saxon,' said the candidate, 'and there is no use in
indignation. Our government is crushed under Frederick's heel these
five years, and I might as well hope for mercy from the Grand Mogul.
Nor am I, in truth, discontented with my lot; I have lived on a
penny bread for so many years, that a soldier's rations will be a
luxury to me. I do not care about more or less blows of a cane; all
such evils are passing, and therefore endurable. I will never, God
willing, slay a man in combat; but I am not unanxious to experience
on myself the effect of the war-passion, which has had so great an
influence on the human race. It was for the same reason that I
determined to marry Amalia, for a man is not a complete Mensch until
he is the father of a family; to be which is a condition of his
existence, and therefore a duty of his education. Amalia must wait;
she is out of the reach of want, being, indeed, cook to the Frau
Prorectorinn Nasenbrumm, my worthy patron's lady. I have one or two
books with me, which no one is likely to take from me, and one in my
heart which is the best of all. If it shall please Heaven to finish
my existence here, before I can prosecute my studies further, what
cause have I to repine? I pray God I may not be mistaken, but I
think I have wronged no man, and committed no mortal sin. If I have,
I know where to look for forgiveness; and if I die, as I have said,
without knowing all that I would desire to learn, shall I not be in
a situation to learn EVERYTHING, and what can human soul ask for

'Pardon me for putting so many _I_'s in my discourse,' said the
candidate, 'but when a man is talking of himself, 'tis the briefest
and simplest way of talking.'

In which, perhaps, though I hate egotism, I think my friend was
right. Although he acknowledged himself to be a mean-spirited
fellow, with no more ambition than to know the contents of a few
musty books, I think the man had some good in him; especially in the
resolution with which he bore his calamities. Many a gallant man of
the highest honour is often not proof against these, and has been
known to despair over a bad dinner, or to be cast down at a ragged-
elbowed coat. MY maxim is to bear all, to put up with water if you
cannot get Burgundy, and if you have no velvet to be content with
frieze. But Burgundy and velvet are the best, bien entendu, and the
man is a fool who will not seize the best when the scramble is open.

The heads of the sermon which my friend the theologian intended to
impart to me, were, however, never told; for, after our coming out
of the hospital, he was drafted into a regiment quartered as far as
possible from his native country, in Pomerania; while I was put into
the Bulow regiment, of which the ordinary headquarters were Berlin.
The Prussian regiments seldom change their garrisons as ours do, for
the fear of desertion is so great, that it becomes necessary to know
the face of every individual in the service; and, in time of peace,
men live and die in the same town. This does not add, as may be
imagined, to the amusements of the soldier's life. It is lest any
young gentleman like myself should take a fancy to a military
career, and fancy that of a private soldier a tolerable one, that I
am giving these, I hope, moral descriptions of what we poor fellows
in the ranks really suffered.

As soon as we recovered, we were dismissed from the nuns and the
hospital to the town prison of Fulda, where we were kept like slaves
and criminals, with artillerymen with lighted matches at the doors
of the courtyards and the huge black dormitory where some hundreds
of us lay; until we were despatched to our different destinations.
It was soon seen by the exercise which were the old soldiers amongst
us, and which the recruits; and for the former, while we lay in
prison, there was a little more leisure: though, if possible, a
still more strict watch kept than over the broken-spirited yokels
who had been forced or coaxed into the service. To describe the
characters here assembled would require Mr. Gilray's own pencil.
There were men of all nations and callings. The Englishmen boxed and
bullied; the Frenchmen played cards, and danced, and fenced; the
heavy Germans smoked their pipes and drank beer, if they could
manage to purchase it. Those who had anything to risk gambled, and
at this sport I was pretty lucky, for, not having a penny when I
entered the depot (having been robbed of every farthing of my
property by the rascally crimps), I won near a dollar in my very
first game at cards with one of the Frenchmen; who did not think of
asking whether I could pay or not upon losing. Such, at least, is
the advantage of having a gentlemanlike appearance; it has saved me
many a time since by procuring me credit when my fortunes were at
their lowest ebb.

Among the Frenchmen there was a splendid man and soldier, whose real
name we never knew, but whose ultimate history created no small
sensation, when it came to be known in the Prussian army. If beauty
and courage are proofs of nobility, as (although I have seen some of
the ugliest dogs and the greatest cowards in the world in the
noblesse) I have no doubt courage and beauty are, this Frenchman
must have been of the highest families in France, so grand and noble
was his manner, so superb his person. He was not quite so tall as
myself, fair, while I am dark, and, if possible, rather broader in
the shoulders. He was the only man I ever met who could master me
with the small-sword; with which he would pink me four times to my
three. As for the sabre, I could knock him to pieces with it; and I
could leap farther and carry more than he could. This, however, is
mere egotism. This Frenchman, with whom I became pretty intimate--
for we were the two cocks, as it were, of the depot, and neither had
any feeling of low jealousy--was called, for want of a better name,
Le Blondin, on account of his complexion. He was not a deserter, but
had come in from the Lower Rhine and the bishoprics, as I fancy;
fortune having proved unfavourable to him at play probably, and
other means of existence being denied him. I suspect that the
Bastile was waiting for him in his own country, had he taken a fancy
to return thither.

He was passionately fond of play and liquor, and thus we had a
considerable sympathy together: when excited by one or the other, he
became frightful. I, for my part, can bear, without wincing, both
ill luck and wine; hence my advantage over him was considerable in
our bouts, and I won enough money from him to make my position
tenable. He had a wife outside (who, I take it, was the cause of his
misfortunes and separation from his family), and she used to be
admitted to see him twice or thrice a week, and never came empty-
handed---a little brown bright-eyed creature, whose ogles had made
the greatest impression upon all the world.

This man was drafted into a regiment that was quartered at Neiss in
Silesia, which is only at a short distance from the Austrian
frontier; he maintained always the same character for daring and
skill, and was, in the secret republic of the regiment--which always
exists as well as the regular military hierarchy--the acknowledged
leader. He was an admirable soldier, as I have said; but haughty,
dissolute, and a drunkard. A man of this mark, unless he takes care
to coax and flatter his officers (which I always did), is sure to
fall out with them. Le Blondin's captain was his sworn enemy, and
his punishments were frequent and severe.

His wife and the women of the regiment (this was after the peace)
used to carry on a little commerce of smuggling across the Austrian
frontier, where their dealings were winked at by both parties; and
in obedience to the instructions of her husband, this woman, from
every one of her excursions, would bring in a little powder and
ball: commodities which are not to be procured by the Prussian
soldier, and which were stowed away in secret till wanted. They WERE
to be wanted, and that soon.

Le Blondin had organised a great and extraordinary conspiracy. We
don't know how far it went, how many hundreds or thousands it
embraced; but strange were the stories told about the plot amongst
us privates: for the news was spread from garrison to garrison, and
talked of by the army, in spite of all the Government efforts to
hush it up--hush it up, indeed! I have been of the people myself; I
have seen the Irish rebellion, and I know what is the free-masonry
of the poor.

He made himself the head of the plot. There were no writings nor
papers. No single one of the conspirators communicated with any
other than the Frenchman; but personally he gave his orders to them
all. He had arranged matters for a general rising of the garrison,
at twelve o'clock on a certain day: the guard-houses in the town
were to be seized, the sentinels cut down, and--who knows the rest?
Some of our people used to say that the conspiracy was spread
through all Silesia, and that Le Blondin was to be made a general in
the Austrian service.

At twelve o'clock, and opposite the guard-house by the Bohmer-Thor
of Neiss, some thirty men were lounging about in their undress, and
the Frenchman stood near the sentinel of the guard-house, sharpening
a wood hatchet on a stone. At the stroke of twelve, he got up, split
open the sentinel's head with a blow of his axe, and the thirty men,
rushing into the guard-house, took possession of the arms there, and
marched at once to the gate. The sentry there tried to drop the bar,
but the Frenchman rushed up to him, and, with another blow of the
axe, cut off his right hand, with which he held the chain. Seeing
the men rushing out armed, the guard without the gate drew up across
the road to prevent their passage; but the Frenchman's thirty gave
them a volley, charged them with the bayonet, and brought down
several, and the rest flying, the thirty rushed on. The frontier is
only a league from Neiss, and they made rapidly towards it.

But the alarm was given in the town, and what saved it was that the
clock by which the Frenchman went was a quarter of an hour faster
than any of the clocks in the town. The generale was beat, the
troops called to arms, and thus the men who were to have attacked
the other guard-houses, were obliged to fall into the ranks, and
their project was defeated. This, however, likewise rendered the
discovery of the conspirators impossible, for no man could betray
his comrade, nor, of course, would he criminate himself.

Cavalry was sent in pursuit of the Frenchman and his thirty
fugitives, who were, by this time, far on their way to the Bohemian
frontier. When the horse came up with them, they turned, received
them with a volley and the bayonet, and drove them back. The
Austrians were out at the barriers, looking eagerly on at the
conflict. The women, who were on the look-out too, brought more
ammunition to these intrepid deserters, and they engaged and drove
back the dragoons several times. But in these gallant and fruitless
combats much time was lost, and a battalion presently came up, and
surrounded the brave thirty; when the fate of the poor fellows was
decided. They fought with the fury of despair: not one of them asked
for quarter. When their ammunition failed, they fought with the
steel, and were shot down or bayoneted where they stood. The
Frenchman was the very last man who was hit. He received a bullet in
the thigh, and fell, and in this state was overpowered, killing the
officer who first advanced to seize him.

He and the very few of his comrades who survived were carried back
to Neiss, and immediately, as the ringleader, he was brought before
a council of war. He refused all interrogations which were made as
to his real name and family. 'What matters who I am?' said he; 'you
have me and will shoot me. My name would not save me were it ever so
famous.' In the same way he declined to make a single discovery
regarding the plot. 'It was all my doing,' he said; 'each man
engaged in it only knew me, and is ignorant of every one of his
comrades. The secret is mine alone, and the secret shall die with

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