where it comes from: there 's an end to that. Now I want to make
294 BARNABY RUDGE
one against the Catholics, I 'm No-Popery man, and ready to be
sworn in. That 's what I come here for.'
Tut him down on the roll. Muster Gashford,' said Dennis ap-
provingly. That 's the way to go to work â right to the end at
once, and no palaver.'
'What 's the use of shooting wide of the mark, eh, old boy! ' cried
'My sentiments all over,' rejoined the hangman. 'This is the
sort of chap for my division. Muster Gashford. Down with him, sir.
Put him on the roll. I 'd stand godfather to him, if he was to be
christened in a bonfire, made of the ruins of the Bank of England.'
With these and other expressions of confidence of the like flat-
tering kind, Mr. Dennis gave him a hearty slap on the back,
which Hugh was not slow to return.
'No Popery, brother!' cried the hangman.
'No Property, brother!' responded Hugh.
Topery, Popery,' said the secretary with his usual mildness.
Tt 's all the same!' cried Dennis. 'It's all right. Down with
him, Muster Gashford. Down with everybody, down with every-
thing! Hurrah for the Protestant religion! That's the time of
day, Muster Gashford!'
The secretary regarded them both with a very favourable ex-
pression of countenance, while they gave loose to these and other
demonstrations of their patriotic purpose; and was about to make
some remark aloud, when Dennis, stepping up to him, and shading
his mouth with his hand, said, in a hoarse whisper, as he nudged
him with his elbow:
'Don't split upon a constitutional officer's profession, Muster
Gashford. There are popular prejudices, you know, and he
mightn't like it. Wait till he comes to be more intimate with me.
He 's a fine-built chap, an't he?'
'A powerful fellow indeed!'
'Did you ever, Muster Gashford,' whispered Dennis, with a
horrible kind of admiration, such as that with which a cannibal
might regard his intimate friend, when hungry, â 'did you ever' â
and here he drew still closer to his ear, and fenced his mouth with
both his open hands â 'see such a throat as his? Do but cast your
eye upon it. There 's a neck for stretching Muster Gashford!'
BARNABY RUDGE 295
The secretary assented to this proposition with the best grace
he could assume â it is difficult to feign a true professional relish:
which is eccentric sometimes â and after asking the candidate a
few unimportant questions, proceeded to enroll him a member of
the Great Protestant Association of England. If anything could
have exceeded Mr. Dennis's joy on the happy conclusion of this
ceremony, it would have been the rapture with which he received
the announcement that the new member could neither read nor
write: those two arts being (as ^Ir. Dennis swore) the greatest
possible curse a civilised community could know, and militating
more against the professional emoluments and usefulness of the
great constitutional office he had the honour to hold, than any ad-
verse circumstances that could present themselves to his imagina-
The enrolment being completed, and Hugh having been in-
formed by Gashford, in his peculiar manner, of the peaceful and
strictly lawful objects contemplated by the body to which he now
belonged â during which recital Mr. Dennis nudged him very
much with his elbow, and made divers remarkable faces â the
secretary gave them both to understand that he desired to be
alone. Therefore they took their leaves without delay, and came
out of the house together.
'Are you walking, brother?' said Dennis.
'Ay!' returned Hugh. 'Where you will.'
'That 's social,' said his new friend. 'Which way shall we take?
Shall we go and have a look at doors that we shall make a pretty
good clattering at, before long â eh, brother?'
Hugh answering in the affirmative, they went slowly down to
Westminster, where both Houses of Parliament were then sitting.
Mingling in the crowd of carriages, horses, servants, chairmen,
link-boys, porters, and idlers of all kinds, they lounged about;
while Hugh's new friend pointed out to him significantly the weak
parts of the building, how easy it was to get into the lobby, and
so to the very door of the House of Commons; and how plainly,
when they marched down there in grand array, their roars and
shouts would be heard by the members inside: with a great deal
more to the same purpose, all of which Hugh received with mani-
296 BARNABY RUDGE
He told him, too, who some of the Lords and Commons were,
by name, as they came in and out; whether they were friendly
to the Papists or otherwise; and bade him take notice of their
liveries and equipages, that he might be sure of them, in case
of need. Sometimes he drew him close to the windows of a pass-
ing carriage that he might see it's master's face by the light of
the lamps; and, both in respect of people and localities, he showed
so much acquaintance with everything around, that it was plain
he had often studied there before; as indeed, when they grew
a little more confidential, he confessed he had.
Perhaps the most striking part of all this was, the number of
people â never in groups of more than two or three together â
who seemed to be skulking about the crowd for the same pur-
pose. To the greater part of these, a slight nod or a look from
Hugh's companion was sufficient greeting; but, now and then,
some man would come and stand beside him in the throng, and,
without turning his head or appearing to communicate with him,
would say a word or two in a low voice, which he would an-
swer in the same cautious manner. Then they would part, like
strangers. Some of these men often re-appeared again unex-
pectedly in the crowd close to Hugh, and, as they passed by,
pressed his hand, or looked him sternly in the face; but they
never spoke to him, nor he to them; no, not a word.
It was remarkable, too, that whenever they happened to stand
where there was any press of people, and Hugh chanced to be
looking downward, he was sure to see an arm stretched out â
under his own perhaps, or perhaps across him â which thrust some
paper into the hand or pocket of a bystander, and was so sud-
denly withdrawn that it was impossible to tell from whom it
came; nor could he see in any face, on glancing quickly round,
the least confusion or surprise. They often trod upon a paper
like the one he carried in his breast, but his companion whispered
him not to touch it or to take it up, â not even to look towards
it, â so there they let them lie, and passed on.
When they had paraded the street and all the avenues of the
building in this manner for near two hours, they turned away,
and his friend asked him what he thought of what he had seen,
and whether he was prepared for a good hot piece of work if it
BARNABY RUDGE 297
should come to that. The hotter the better,' said Hugh, 'I 'm pre-
pared for anything.' â 'So am I,' said his friend, 'and so are many
of us'; and they shook hands upon it with a great oath, and with
many terrible imprecations on the Papists.
As they were thirsty by this time, Dennis proposed that they
should repair together to The Boot, where there was good com-
pany and strong liquor. Hugh yielding a ready assent, they bent
their steps that way with no loss of time.
This Boot was a lone house of public entertainment, situated
in the fields at the back of the Foundling Hospital ; a very solitary
spot at that period, and quite deserted after dark. The tavern
stood at some distance from any high road, and was approach-
able only by a dark and narrow lane; so that Hugh was much
surprised to find several people drinking there, and great merri-
ment going on. He was still more surprised to find among them
almost every face that had caught his attention in the crowd;
but his companion having w^hispered him outside the door, that
it was not considered good manners at The Boot to appear at all
curious about the company, he kept his own counsel, and made
no show of recognition.
Before putting his lips to the liquor which was brought for
them, Dennis drank in a loud voice the health of Lord George
Gordon, President of the Great Protestant Association; which
toast Hugh pledged likewise, with corresponding enthusiasm. A
fiddler who was present, and who appeared to act as the appointed
minstrel of the company, forthwith struck up a Scotch reel; and
that in tones so invigorating, that Hugh and his friend (who had
both been drinking before) rose from their seats as by previous
concert, and, to the great admiration of the assembled guests^
performed an extemporaneous Xo-Popery Dance.
The applause which the performance of Hugh and his new friend
elicited from the company at The Boot, had not yet subsided,
and the two dancers were still panting from their exertions, which
298 BARNABY RUDGE
had been of a rather extreme and violent character, when the
party was reinforced by the arrival of some more guests, who,
being a detachment of United Bull-dogs, were received with very
flattering marks of distinction and respect.
The leader of this small party â for, including himself, they
were but three in number â was our old acquaintance, Mr. Tapper-
tit, who seemed, physically speaking, to have grown smaller with
years (particularly as to his legs, which were stupendously little),
but who, in a moral point of view, in personal dignity and self-
esteem, had swelled into a giant. Nor was it by any means diffi-
cult for the most unobservant person to detect this state of feel-
ing in the quondam 'prentice, for it not only proclaimed itself
impressively and beyond mistake in his majestic walk and kindling
eye, but found a striking means of revelation in his turned-up
nose, which scouted all things of earth with deep disdain, and
sought communion with its kindred skies.
Mr. Tappertit, as chief or captain of the Bull-dogs, was at-
tended by his two lieutenants ; one, the tall comrade of his younger
life; the other, a 'Prentice Knight in days of yore â Mark Gilbert,
bound in the olden time to Thomas Curzon of the Golden Fleece.
These gentlemen, like himself, were now emancipated from their
'prentice thraldom, and served as journeymen; but they were, in
humble emulation of his great example, bold and daring spirits,
and aspired to a distinguished state in great political events.
Hence their connection with the Protestant Association of Eng-
land, sanctioned by the name of Lord George Gordon; and hence
their present visit to The Boot.
'Gentlemen!' said Mr. Tappertit, taking off his hat as a great
general might in addressing his troops. 'Well met. My lord does
me and you the honour to send his compliments per self.'
'You 've seen my lord too, have you?' said Dennis. '/ see him
'My duty called me to the Lobby when our shop shut up; and
I saw him there, sir,' Mr. Tappertit replied, as he and his lieu-
tenants took their seats. 'How do you do?'
'Lively, master, lively,' said the fellow. 'Here 's a new brother,
regularly put down in black and white by Muster Gashford; a
BARNABY RUDGE 299
credit to the cause; one of the stick-at-nothing sort; one arter
my own heart. D'ye see him? Has he got the looks of a man
that '11 do, do you think?' he cried, as he slapped Hugh on the
'Looks or no looks,' said Hugh, with a drunken flourish of his
arm, 'I 'm the man you w-ant. I hate the Papists, every one of
'em. They hate me and I hate them. They do me all the harm
they can, and I '11 do them all the harm / can. Hurrah!'
'Was there ever,' said Dennis, looking round the room, when
the echo of his boisterous voice had died away; 'was there ever
such a game boy I Why, I mean to say, brothers, that if Muster
Gashford had gone a hundred mile and got together fifty men
of the common run, they wouldn't have been worth this one.'
The greater part of the company implicity subscribed to this
opinion, and testified their faith in Hugh by nods and looks of
great significance. ^Mr. Tappertit sat and contemplated him for
a long time in silence, as if he suspended his judgment; then drew
a little nearer to him, and eyed him over more carefully; then
went close up to him, and took him apart into a dark corner.
T say,' he began, with a thoughtful brow, 'haven't I seen you
'It 's like you may,' said Hugh, in his careless way. T don't
know; shouldn't wonder.'
'Xo, but it 's very easily settled,' returned Sim. 'Look at me.
Did you ever see me before? You wouldn't be likely to forget
it, you know, if you ever did. Look at me. Don't be afraid; I
won't do you any harm. Take a good look â steady now.'
The encouraging way in which Mr. Tappertit made this re-
quest, and coupled it with an assurance that he needn't be fright-
ened, amused Hugh mightily â so much indeed, that he saw noth-
ing at all of the small man before him, through closing his eyes
in a fit of hearty laughter, which shook his great broad sides un-
til they ached again.
'Gomel' said Mr. Tappertit, growing a little impatient under
this disrespectful treatment. 'Do you know me, feller?'
'Not I,' cried Hugh. 'Ha ha ha I But I should like to.'
'And yet I 'd have wagered a seven-shilling piece,' said ^Ir.
300 BARKABY RUDGE
Tappertit, folding his arms, and confronting him with his legs
wide apart and firmly planted on the ground, 'that you once were
hostler at the Maypole.'
Hugh opened his eyes on hearing this, and looked at him in
' â And so you were, too,' said Mr. Tappertit, pushing him
away with a condescending playfulness. 'When did my eyes ever
deceive â unless it was a young woman! Don't you know me
'Why it an'tâ ' Hugh faltered.
'An't it,' said Mr. Tappertit. 'Are you sure of that? You re-
member G. Varden, don't you?'
Certainly Hugh did, and he remembered D. Varden too; but
that he didn't tell him.
'You remember coming down there, before I was out of my
time, to ask after a vagabond that had bolted off, and left his
disconsolate father a prey to the bitterest emotions, and all the
rest of it â don't you?' said ]\Ir. Tappertit.
'Of course I do!' cried Hugh. 'And I saw you there.'
'Saw me there!' said Mr. Tappertit. 'Yes, I should think you
did see me there. The place would be troubled to go on without
me. Don't you remember my thinking you liked the vagabond,
and on that account going to quarrel with you; and then finding
you detested him worse than poison, going to drink with you?
Don't you remember that?'
'To be sure!' cried Hugh.
'Well! and are you in the same mind now?' said Mr. Tappertit.
'Yes!' roared Hugh.
'You speak like a man,' said Mr. Tappertit, 'and I '11 shake
hands with you.' With these conciliatory expressions he suited
the action to the word; and Hugh meeting his advances readily,
they performed the ceremony with a show of great heartiness.
'I find,' said Mr. Tappertit, looking round on the assembled
guests, 'that brother What 's-his-name and I are old acquaintance.
â You never heard anything more of that rascal, I suppose, eh?'
'Not a syllable,' replied Hugh. 'I never want to. I don't be-
lieve I ever shall. He 's dead long ago, I hope.'
'It 's to be hoped, for the sake of mankind in general and the
BARNABY RUDGE 301
happiness of society, that he is/ said Mr. Tappertit, rubbing his
palm upon his legs, and looking at it between whiles. 'Is your
other hand at all cleaner? Much the same. Well, I '11 owe you
another shake. We '11 suppose it done, if you 've no objection.'
Hugh laughed again, and with such thorough abandonment to
his mad humour, that his limbs seemed dislocated, and his whole
frame in danger of tumbling to pieces; but Mr. Tappertit, so far
from receiving this extreme merriment with any irritation, was
pleased to regard it with the utmost favour, and even to join in it,
so far as one of his gravity and station could, with any regard to
that decency and decorum which men in high places are expected to
Mr. Tappertit did not stop here, as many public characters
might have done, but calling up his brace of lieutenants, intro-
duced Hugh to them with high commendation; declaring him to
be a man who, at such times as those in which they lived, could
not be too much cherished. Further he did him the honour to
remark, that he would be an acquisition of which even the United
Bull-dogs might be proud; and finding, upon sounding him, that
he was quite ready and willing to enter the society (for he w^as
not at all particular, and would have leagued himself that night
with anything, or anybody, for any purpose whatsoever), caused
the necessary preliminaries to be gone into upon the spot. This
tribute to his great merit delighted no man more than Mr. Dennis,
as he himself proclaimed with several rare and surprising oaths;
and indeed it gave unmingled satisfaction to the whole assembly.
'Make any thing you like of me!' cried Hugh, flourishing the
can he had emptied more than once. Tut me on any duty you
please. I 'm your man. I '11 do it. Here 's my captain â here 's
my leader. Ha ha ha! Let him give me the word of command, and
I '11 fight the whole Parliament House single-handed, or set a
lighted torch to the King's Throne itself!' With that, he smote
Mr. Tappertit on the back, with such violence that his little body
seemed to shrink into a mere nothing; and roared again until the
very foundlings near at hand were startled in their beds.
In fact, a sense of something whimsical in their companionship
seemed to have taken entire possession of his rude brain. The bare
fact of being patronised by a great man whom he could have
302 BARjNfABY RUDGE
crushed with one hand, appeared in his eyes so eccentric and hu-
morous, that a kind of ferocious merriment gained the mastery
over him, and quite subdued his brutal nature. He roared and
roared again; toasted Mr. Tappertit a hundred times; declared
himself a Bull-dog to the core; and vowed to be faithful to him to
the last drop of blood in his veins.
All these compliments Mr. Tappertit received as matters of
course â flattering enough in their way, but entirely attributable
to his vast superiority. His dignified self-possession only delighted
Hugh the more; and in a word, this giant and the dwarf struck up
a friendship which bade fair to be of long continuance, as the one
held it to be his right to command, and the other considered it an
exquisite pleasantry to obey. Nor was Hugh by any means a pas-
sive follower, who scrupled to act without precise and definite
'Tjrders; for when Mr. Tappertit mounted on an empty cask which
stood by way of rostrum in the room, and volunteered a speech
upon the alarming crisis then at hand, he placed himself beside the
orator, and though he grinned from ear to ear at every word he
said, threw out such expressive hints to scoffers in the management
of his cudgel, that those w^ho were at first the most disposed to in-
terrupt, became remarkably attentive, and were the loudest in
It was not all noise and jest, however, at The Boot, nor were
the whole party listeners to the speech. There were some men at
the other end of the room (which was a long, low-roofed chamber)
in earnest conversation all the time; and when any of this group
went out, fresh people were sure to come in soon afterwards and
sit down in their places, as though the others had relieved them on
some watch or duty; which it was pretty clear they did, for these
changes took place by the clock, at intervals of half an hour.
These persons whispered very much among themselves, and kept
aloof, and often looked round, as jealous of their speech being
overheard ; some two or three among them entered in books what
seemed to be reports from the others; when they were not thus
employed, one of them would turn to the newspapers which were
strewn upon the table, and from the St. James's Chronicle, the
Herald, Chronicle, or Public Advertiser, would read to the rest in a
low voice some passage having reference to the topic in which they
BARXABY RUDGE 303
were all so deeply interested. But the great attraction was a
pamphlet called the Thunderer, which espoused their own opinions,
and was supposed at that time to emanate directly from the Asso-
ciation. This was always in request; and whether read aloud, to
an eager knot of listeners, or by some solitary man. was certain to
be followed by stormy talking and excited looks.
In the midst of all his merriment, and admiration of his captain,
Hugh was made sensible by these and other tokens, of the pres-
ence of an air of mystery, akin to that which had so much im-
pressed him out of doors. It was impossible to discard a sense that
something serious was going on, and that under the noisy revel of
the public-house, there lurked unseen and dangerous matter.
Little affected by this, however, he was perfectly satisfied with his
quarters and would have remained there till morning, but that
his conductor rose soon after midnight, to go home; ^Ir. Tappertit
following his example, left him no excuse to stay. So they all three
left the house together; roaring a Xo-Popery song until the fields
resounded with the dismal noise.
'Cheer up. captain!' cried Hugh, when they had roared them-
selves out of breath. 'Another stave 1'
Mr. Tappertit, nothing loath, began again; and so the three went
staggering on, arm-in-arm, shouting like madmen, and defying the
watch with great valour. Indeed this did not require any unusual
bravery or boldness, as the watchmen of that time, being selected
for the office on account of excessive age and extraordinary in-
firmity, had a custom of shutting themselves up tight in their
boxes on the first symptoms of disturbance, and remaining there
until they disappeared. In these proceedings, ^Ir. Dennis, who
had a gruff voice and lungs of considerable power, distinguished
himself very much, and acquired great credit with his two com-
'What a queer fellow j-ou are!' said Mr. Tappertit.
'You 're so precious sly and close. \Miy don't you ever tell what
trade you 're of?'
'Answer the captain instantly,' cried Hugh, beating his hat
down on his head; 'why don't you ever tell what trade you 're of?'
T 'm of as gen-teel a calling, brother, as any man in England â
as light a business as any gentleman could desire.'
304 BARNABY RUDGE
'Was you 'prenticed to it?' asked Mr. Tappertit.
'No. Natural genius,' said Mr. Dennis. 'No 'prenticing. It
comes by natur'. Muster Gashford knows my calling. Look at that
hand of mine â many and many a job that hand has done, with a
neatness and dex-terity, never known afore. When I look at that
hand,' said Mr. Dennis, shaking it in the air, 'and remember the
helegant bits of work it has turned off, I feel quite molloncholy to
think it should ever grow old and feeble. But sich is life!'
He heaved a deep sigh as he indulged in these reflections, and
putting his fingers with an absent air on Hugh's throat, and par-
ticularly under his left ear, as if he were studying the anatomical
development of that part of his frame, shook his head in a despond-
ent manner and actually shed tears.
'You 're a kind of artist, I suppose â eh! ' said Mr. Tappertit.
'Yes,' rejoined Dennis; 'yes â I may call myself a artist â a
fancy workman â art improves natur' â that 's my motto.'
'And what do you call this?' said Mr. Tappertit taking his stick
out of his hand.
'That 's my portrait atop,' Dennis replied; 'd 'ye think it 's like?'
'Why â it 's a little too handsome,' said Mr. Tappertit. 'Who
did it? You?'
'I!' repeated Dennis, gazing fondly on his image. 'I wish I had
the talent. That was carved by a friend of mine, as is now no more.
The very day afore he died, he cut that with his pocket-knife from
memory! "I '11 die game," says my friend, "and my last moments
shall be dewoted to making Dennis's picter." That 's it.'
'That was a queer fancy, wasn't it?' said Mr. Tappertit.
'It was a queer fancy,' rejoined the other, breathing on his ficti-
tious nose, and polishing it with the cuff of his coat, 'but he was a
queer subject altogether â a kind of gipsy â one of the finest, stand-
up men, you ever see. Ah! He told me some things that would
startle you a bit, did that friend of mine, on the morning when he
'You were with him at the time, were you?' said Mr. Tappertit.
'Yes,' he answered with a curious look, 'I was there. Oh! yes
certainly, I was there. He wouldn't have gone off half as com-
fortable without me. I had been with three or four of his family
under the same circumstances. They were all fine fellows.'