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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 238 pages of information about Tales.

Yea, and at that very moment,
Consideration like an angel came,
And whipp’d th’ offending Adam out of him. 
                                 Henry V.

I have lived long enough:  my way of life
Is fall’n into the sear, the yellow leaf;
And that which should accompany old age,
As honour, love, obedience, troops of friends,
I must not look to have. 
                                      Macbeth.

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Some to our Hero have a hero’s name
Denied, because no father’s he could claim;
Nor could his mother with precision state
A full fair claim to her certificate;
On her own word the marriage must depend —
A point she was not eager to defend: 
But who, without a father’s name, can raise
His own so high, deserves the greater praise;
The less advantage to the strife he brought,
The greater wonders has his prowess wrought;
He who depends upon his wind and limbs,
Needs neither cork nor bladder when he swims;
Nor will by empty breath be puff’d along,
As not himself—­but in his helpers—­strong. 
   Suffice it then, our Hero’s name was clear,
For call John Dighton, and he answer’d “Here!”
But who that name in early life assign’d
He never found, he never tried to find: 
Whether his kindred were to John disgrace,
Or John to them, is a disputed case;
His infant state owed nothing to their care —
His mind neglected, and his body bare;
All his success must on himself depend,
He had no money, counsel, guide, or friend;
But in a market-town an active boy
Appear’d, and sought in various ways employ;
Who soon, thus cast upon the world, began
To show the talents of a thriving man. 
   With spirit high John learn’d the world to brave,
And in both senses was a ready knave;
Knave as of old obedient, keen, and quick,
Knave as of present, skill’d to shift and trick;
Some humble part of many trades he caught,
He for the builder and the painter wrought;
For serving-maids on secret errands ran,
The waiter’s helper, and the ostler’s man;
And when he chanced (oft chanced he) place to lose,
His varying genius shone in blacking shoes: 
A midnight fisher by the pond he stood,
Assistant poacher, he o’erlook’d the wood;
At an election John’s impartial mind
Was to no cause nor candidate confined;
To all in turn he full allegiance swore,
And in his hat the various badges bore: 
His liberal soul with every sect agreed,
Unheard their reasons, he received their creed: 
At church he deign’d the organ-pipes to fill,
And at the meeting sang both loud and shrill: 
But the full purse these different merits gain’d,
By strong demands his lively passions drain’d;
Liquors he loved of each inflaming kind,
To midnight revels flew with ardent mind;
Too warm at cards, a losing game he play’d,
To fleecing beauty his attention paid;

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