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not only ill-natured, but manifestly unjust : no sooner do they get one of our random sketches in their hands, but instantly they apply it most unjustifiably to some “ dear friend," and then accuse us vociferously of the personality which originated in their own officious friendship! truly it is an ill-natured town, and most earnestly do we hope it may not meet with the fate of Sodom and Gomorrah of old.
As, however, it may be thought incumbent upon us to make some apology for these mistakes of the town; and as our good-nature is truly exemplary, we would certainly answer this expectation were it not that we have an invincible antipathy to making apologies. We have a most profound contempt for any man who cannot give three good reasons for an unreasonable thing; and will therefore condescend, as usual, to give the public three special reasons for never apologizing : -first, an apology implies that we are accountable to some body or another for our conduct ;-now as we do not care a fiddle-stick, as authors, for either public opinion or private ill-will, it would be implying a falsehood to apologize :-second, an apology would indicate that we had been doing what we ought not to have done. Now as we never did nor ever intend to do any thing wrong:
it would be ridiculous to make an apology :third, we labor under the same incapacity in the art of apologizing that lost Langtaff his mistress;
we never yet undertook to make apology without committing a new offence, and making matters ten times worse than they were before ; and we are, therefore, determined to avoid such predicaments in future.
But though we have resolved never to apologize, yet we have no particular objection to explain; and if this is all that's wanted, we will go about it directly:- allons, gentlemen! -before, however, we enter upon this serious affair, we take this opportunity to express our surprise and indignation at the incredulity of some people.-Have we not, over and over, assured the town that we are three of the best natured fellows living? And is it not astonishing, that having already given seven convincing proofs of the truth of this assurance, they should still have any doubts on the subjeet? but as it is one of the impossible things to make a knave believe in honesty, so, perhaps, it may be another to make this most sarcastic, satirical, and tea-drinking city believe in the existence of good-nature. But to our explanation.--Gentle reader ! for we are convinced that none but gentle or gentecl readers can relish our excellent productions if thou art in expectation of being perfectly satisfied with what we are about to say, thou mayest as well " whistle lillebullero" and skip quite over what follows ; for never wight was more disappointed than thou wilt be most assuredly.But to the explanation: We care just as much about the public and its wise conjectures, as we do about the man in the moon and his whim-whams; or the criticisms of the lady who sits majestically in her elbow-chair in the lobster; and who, belying her sex, as we are credibly informed, never says any thing worth listening to. We have launched our bark, and we will steer to our destined port with undeviating perseverance, fearless of being shipwrecked by the way. Good-nature is our steersman, réason our ballast, whim the breeze that wafts us along, and MOPALITY our leading star.
NO. IX.-SATURDAY, APRIL 25, 1807.
FROM MY ELLOW-CUAIR.
It in some measure jumps with my humor to be • melancholy and gentleman-like” this stormy night, and I see no reason why I should not indulge myself for once.-Away, then, with joke, with fun and laughter for a while; let my soul look back in mournful retrospect, and sadden with the memory of my good aunt CHARITY-who died of a frenchman !
Stare not, oh, most dubious reader, at the mention of a complaint so uncommon; grievously hath it afflicted the ancient family of the Cocklofts, who carry their absurd antipathy to the french so far, that they will not suffer a clove of garlic in the house : and my good old friend Christopher was once on the point of abandoning his paternal country mansion of Cockloft-ball, merely because
a colony of frogs had settled in a neighboring swamp. I verily believe he would have carried his whim-wham into effect, had not a fortunate drought obliged the enemy to strike their tents, and, like a troop of wandering arabs, to march off towards a moister part of the country.
My aunt Charity departed this life in the fiftyninth year of her age, though she never grew older after twenty-five. In her teens she was, according to her own account, a celebrated beauty,—though I never could meet with any body that remembered when she was handsome; ou the contrary, Evergreen's father, who used to gallant her in his youth, says she was as knotty a little piece of humanity as he ever saw; and that, if she had been possessed of the least sensibility, she would like poor old Acco, have most certainly run mad at her own figure and face the first time she contemplated herself in a lookiug-glass. In the good old times that saw my aunt in the heyday of youth, a fine lady was a most formidable animal, and required to be approached with the same awe and devotion that a tartar feels in the presence of his Grand Lama. If a gentleman offered to take her hand, except to help her into a carriage, or lead her into a drawing-room, such
syns ! such a rustling of brocade and taffeta !