Who does not recognise in this last disaster, the truth of the old adage?
“Most haste, least speed.”
VIII. THE ROAD: ENGLISH AND FRENCH.
“Jorrocks’s France, in three wolumes, would sound werry well,” observed our worthy citizen, one afternoon, to his confidential companion the Yorkshireman, as they sat in the veranda in Coram Street, eating red currants and sipping cold whiskey punch; “and I thinks I could make something of it. They tells me that at the ‘west end’ the booksellers will give forty pounds for anything that will run into three wolumes, and one might soon pick up as much matter as would stretch into that quantity.”
The above observation was introduced in a long conversation between Mr. Jorrocks and his friend, relative to an indignity that had been offered him by the rejection by the editor of a sporting periodical of a long treatise on eels, which, independently of the singularity of diction, had become so attenuated in the handling, as to have every appearance of filling three whole numbers of the work; and Mr. Jorrocks had determined to avenge the insult by turning author on his own account. The Yorkshireman, ever ready for amusement, cordially supported Mr. Jorrocks in his views, and a bargain was soon struck between them, the main stipulations of which were, that Mr. Jorrocks should find cash, and the Yorkshireman should procure information.
Accordingly, on the Saturday after, the nine o’clock Dover heavy drew up at the “Bricklayers’ Arms,” with Mr. Jorrocks on the box seat, and the Yorkshireman imbedded among the usual heterogeneous assembly—soldiers, sailors, Frenchmen, fishermen, ladies’ maids, and footmen—that compose the cargo of these coaches. Here they were assailed with the usual persecution from the tribe of Israel, in the shape of a hundred merchants, proclaiming the virtues of their wares; one with black-lead pencils, twelve a shilling, with an invitation to “cut ’em and try ’em”; another with a good pocket-knife, “twelve blades and saw, sir”; a third, with a tame squirrel and a piping bullfinch, that could whistle God save the King and the White Cockade—to be given for an old coat. “Buy a silver guard-chain for your vatch, sir!” cried a dark eyed urchin, mounting the fore-wheel, and holding a bunch of them in Mr. Jorrocks’s face; “buy pocket-book, memorandum-book!” whined another. “Keepsake—Forget-me-not—all the last year’s annuals at half-price!” “Sponge cheap, sponge! take a piece, sir—take a piece.” “Patent leather straps.” “Barcelona nuts. Slippers. Morning Hurl (Herald). Rhubarb. ’Andsome dog-collar, sir, cheap!—do to fasten your wife up with!”
“Stand clear, ye warmints!” cries the coachman, elbowing his way among them—and, remounting the box, he takes the whip and reins out of Mr. Jorrocks’s hands, cries “All right behind? sit tight!” and off they go.