My master, for his own interest, would not suffer any one to touch me except my nurse, and, to prevent danger, benches were set round the table at such a distance as to put me out of everybody’s reach. However, an unlucky school-boy aimed a hazel-nut directly at my head, which very narrowly missed me: otherwise, it came with so much violence, that it would have infallibly knocked out my brains, for it was almost as large as a small pumpion, but I had the satisfaction to see the young rogue well beaten, and turned out of the room.
[Illustration: “FLOURISHED IT AFTER THE MANNER OF FENCERS IN ENGLAND.” P. 26.]
My master gave public notice that he would show me again the next market-day, and in the meantime he prepared a more convenient vehicle for me, which he had reason enough to do; for I was so tired with my first journey, and with entertaining company for eight hours together, that I could hardly stand upon my legs or speak a word. It was at least three days before I recovered my strength; and that I might have no rest at home, all the neighboring gentleman, from a hundred miles round, hearing of my fame, came to see me at my master’s own house. There could not be fewer than thirty persons with their wives and children (for the country was very populous); and my master demanded the rate of a full room whenever he showed me at home, although it were only to a single family; so that for some time I had but little ease every day of the week (except Wednesday which is their Sabbath), although I was not carried to the town.
My master, finding how profitable I was like to be, resolved to carry me to the most considerable cities of the kingdom. Having, therefore, provided himself with all things necessary for a long journey, and settled his affairs at home, he took leave of his wife, and upon the seventeenth of August, 1703, about two months after my arrival, we set out for the metropolis, situated the middle of that empire, and about three thousand miles distance from our house. My master made his daughter Glumdalclitch ride behind him. She carried me on her lap, in a box tied about her waist. The girl had lined it on all sides with the softest cloth she could get, well quilted underneath, furnished it with her baby’s bed, provided me with linen and other necessaries, and made everything as conveniently as she could. We had no other company but a boy of the house, who rode after us with the luggage.