Poor Cophagus finds an end to his adventures by the means of a mad bull; I, of mine, by matrimony—Father is prettily behaved, and my Quaker wife the most fashionably dressed lady in town—verily! hum!
Alas! little did Mr Cophagus know how fatal to him would be the light cotton nets when he put them on that day. He had proceeded, as it appears, about two-thirds of his way home (he lived in Welbeck Street), when he perceived a rush from up a street leading into Oxford Street. He looked to ascertain the cause, when to his horror he perceived—what to him was the greatest of all horrors—a mad bull. If anything could make Mr Cophagus run, it was a sight like that, and he did run; but he could not run fast in his cotton nets and tight Hessians, which crippled him altogether. As if out of pure spite, the bull singled him out from at least one hundred, who exerted their agility and again was poor Mr Cophagus tossed far behind the animal, fortunately breaking his fall by tumbling on a large dog who was in full chase. The dog, who was unable to crawl from beneath the unfortunate Cophagus, was still in a condition to bite, which he did most furiously; and the butcher, who had an affection for his dog, when he perceived its condition, also vented his fury upon poor Cophagus, by saluting him with several blows on his head with his cudgel. What between the bull, the dog, and the butcher, poor Mr Cophagus was taken into a shop in a very deplorable condition. After some time he recovered, and was able to name his residence, when he was taken home.
It was late in the evening when I received a note from Susannah, informing me of that unfortunate accident. My father had just finished a long story about filial duty, country girls, good wives, &c, and had wound up by saying, that he and Mr Masterton both considered that Miss Temple would be a very eligible match, and that as I had requested him to select, he had selected her accordingly. I had just proved how truly dutiful I was, by promising to do all I could to love her, and to fulfil his wishes, when the note was put in my hands. I read it, stated its contents to my father, and, with his permission, immediately jumped into a hackney-coach, and drove to Welbeck Street.
On my arrival I found poor Mrs Cophagus in a state of syncope, and Susannah attending her. I sent for the surgeon who had been called in, and then went up to Mr Cophagus. He was much better than I expected—calm, and quite sensible. His wounds had been dressed by the surgeon, but he did not appear to be aware of the extent of the injury he had received. When the surgeon came I questioned him. He informed me that although much hurt, he did not consider that there was any danger to be apprehended; there were no bones broken; the only fear that he had was, that there might be some internal injury; but at present that could not be ascertained. I thanked him, and consoled Mrs Cophagus with this information. I then returned to her husband, who shook his head, and muttered, as I put my ear down to hear him, “Thought so—come to London—full of mad bulls—tossed—die—and so on.”