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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 258 pages of information about The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth.
whereas the oysters are found to be diseased; the gin-and-bitters intolerable; the champagne poisoned by Louis Napoleon; and the sour krout absolutely indigestible, an adjournment is thereby imperatively necessary.  In consideration of all the foregoing facts, the speaker moved that this Congress do adjourn to the more congenial atmosphere of Aix-la-Chapelle.  The motion was carried with shouts of laughter, and the Congress broke up in the very best humor, leaving Monsieur Souley in possession of the floor.  In addition to this, the King’s Messenger was carried captive to the first hotel and treated, while Noggs received orders to draw on Sam for all outstanding bills.

“On the following morning the Congress took up its march for Aix-la-Chapelle, resembling somewhat the children of Israel on their historical pilgrimage.  In straggling order did the grotesque train wend its way,—­Monsieur Souley mounted on the before-named jackass, which, having so long been accustomed to Monsieur’s riding, obstinately refused to be mounted by my friend Buck, who was in consequence seated on boxes ‘one, two and three,’ which were placed on a Dutch van, and drawn by two more docile donkeys, bringing up the rear.  The world knows the rest—­that is, with one exception!  Buck told me, very confidentially, that the Congress had been fast enough for anything; that Pierce was soft enough to think good would come of it; and that he only put his signature to that remarkable document proclaiming our natural right to Cuba with virtuous reluctance,—­merely to keep peace in the house!

CHAPTER XXI.

FASHIONABLE DEBTS AND FASHIONABLE DIPLOMATISTS.

“In days not altogether halcyon, I had a venerable great-uncle, a quaint specimen of human infirmity, the singularity of the parish.  Though eccentric at times, he was not destitute of good qualities.  These, had they been properly applied, might have served to distinguish him among men in what is pedantically called the higher walks of life.  But he had a fault, and one that is very unpopular even at this day:  he would get vexed at the short-comings of his neighbors, at whom he would level truths exceedingly unpalatable.  Indeed, he never failed to put very keen edges on his sayings.  Even now, I have the old man in my mind’s eye, as in the hey-day of youth my boyish fancy sported with his infirmities.  Never shall I forget his slender, stooping figure; his bright bald crown, curtained with locks that pended snowy over his coat collar; his weeping, watchful eye; his tottering mien; his high and furrowed brow, lengthening a sharp, corrugated face; his blunt, warty nose, made more striking by a sunken mouth and the working motion of his lower jaw; and his crutch, for he was a cripple.  They left a deep impression on my mind.  I speak of him as he was in the dawn of his eightieth summer—­when pale blue spots bespread his hands, and his bony fingers

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