that like the wretched captive who recovered
his liberty in his old age, he could make but
little use of his enlargement, and fell into a strange
kind of nutter for want of some kind hand to
scrape his bread, and cut him off in the article
of sugar with a lump, and pay him those other
little attentions to which he was accustomed.
There was something almost awful, too, about
the self-possession of the new pupil ; who
" troubled " Mr. Pecksniff for the loaf, and
helped himself to a rasher of that gentleman's
own particular and private bacon, with all the
coolness in life. He even seemed to think that
he was doing quite a regular thing, and to expect
that Mr. Pinch would follow his example, since
he took occasion to observe of that young man
" that he didn't get on :" a speech of so tremen-
dous a character, that Tom cast down his eyes
involuntarily, and felt as if he himself had com-
mitted some horrible deed and heinous breach
of Mr. Pecksniff's confidence. Indeed, the
agony of h;ning such an indiscreet remark
addressed to him before the assembled family,
was breakfast enough in itself, and would, with-
out any other matter of reflection, have settled
Mr. Pinch's business and quenched his appetite,
for one meal, though he had been never so
The young ladies, however, and Mr. Peck-
sniff likewise, remained in the very best of spirits
in spite of these severe trials, though with some-
thing of a mysterious understanding among
themselves. When the meal was nearly over,
Mr. Pecksniff smilingly explained the cause of
their common satisfaction.
" It is not often," he said, " Martin, that my
daughters and I desert our quiet home to pur-
sue the giddy round of pleasures that revolves
abroad. But we think of doing so to-day."
" Indeed, sir !" cried the new pupil.
" Yes," said Mr. Pecksniff, tapping his left
hand with a letter which he held in his right.
" I have a summons here to repair to London ;
on professional business, my dear Martin ; strictly
on professional business ; and I promised my
girls, long ago, that whenever that happened
again, they should accompany me. We shall
go forth to-night by the heavy coach — like the
dove of old, my dear Martin — and it will be a
week before we again deposit our olive-branches
in the passage. When I say olive-branches,"
observed Mr. Pecksniff, in explanation, " I
mean, our unpretending luggage."
" I hope the young ladies will enjoy their
trip," said Martin.
" Oh ! that I'm sure we shall !" cried Mercy,
clapping her hands. " Good gracious, Cherry,
my darling, the idea of London ! "
"Ardent child!" said Mr. Pecksniff, gazing
on her in a dreamy way. " And yet there is a
melancholy sweetness in these youthful hopes !
It is pleasant to know that they never can be
realised. I remember thinking once myself, in
the days of my childhood, that pickled onions
grew on trees, and that every elephant was born
with an impregnable castle on his back. I have
not found the fact to be so ; far from it ; and
yet those visions have comforted me under cir-
cumstances of trial. Even when I have had the
anguish of discovering that I have nourished in
my breast an ostrich, and not a human pupil —
even in that hour of agony, they have soothed
At this dread allusion to John Westlock, Mr.
Pinch precipitately choked in his tea ; for he
had that very morning received a letter from
him, as Mr. Pecksniff very well knew.
" You will take care, my dear Martin," said
Mr. Pecksniff, resuming his former cheerfulness,
"that the house does not run away in our
absence. We leave you in charge of everything.
There is no mystery : all is free and open.
Unlike the young man in the Eastern talc — who
is described as a one-eyed almanack, if I am
not mistaken, Mr. Pinch?" —
•■ A one-eyed calender, I think, sir," faltered
•• They are pretty nearly the same thing, I
believe,'' said Mr. Pecksniff, smiling compas-
sionately ; " or they used to be in my time.
Unlike that young man, my dear Martin, you
are forbidden to enter no corner of this house ;
hut are requested to make yourself perfectly at
home in every part of it. You will be jovial,
my dear Martin, and will kill the fatted calf if
you please ! "
There was not the least objection, doubtless,
to the young man's slaughtering and appropriat-
ing to his own use any calf, fat or lean, that he
might happen to find upon the premises ; but
as no such animal chanced at that time to be
grazing on Mr. Pecksniff's estate, this request
must be considered rather as a polite compli-
ment than a substantial hospitality. It was the
finishing ornament of the conversation ; for
when he had delivered it, Mr. Pecksniff rose,
and led the way to that hotbed of architectural
ius, the two-pair front.
" Let me see," he said, searching among the
papers, " how you can best employ yourself,
Martin, while 1 am absent. Suppose you were
to give me your idea of a monument to a Lord
Mayor of London ; or a tomb for a sheriff; or
your notion of a cow-house to be erected in a
nobleman's park. Do you know, now," said
Mr. Pecksniff, folding his hands, and looking at
his young relation with an air of pensive interest,
" that I should very much like to see your notion
of a cow-house?"
But Martin by no means appeared to relish
"A pump," said Mr. Pecksniff, "is very
chaste practice. I have found that a lamp-post
is calculated to refine the mind and give it a
classical tendency. An ornamental turnpike
lias a remarkable effect upon the imagination.
What do you say to beginning with an orna-
"Whatever Mr. Pecksniff pleased," said
"Stay," said that gentleman. "Come! as
you're ambitious, and are a very neat draughts-
man, you shall- — ha ha ! — you shall try your
.hand on these proposals for a grammar-school :
regulating your plan, of course, by the printed
particulars. Upon my word, now," said Mr.
Pecksniff, merrily, "I shall be very curious to
see what you make of the grammar-school.
Who knows but a young man of your taste
might hit upon something, impracticable and
unlikely in itself, but which I could put into
shape? For it really is, my dear Martin, it
really is in the finishing touches alone, that
great experience and long study in these matters
tell. Ha, ha, ha ! Now it really will be," con-
tinued Mr. Pecksniff, clapping his young -friend
on the back in his droll humour, "an amuse-
ment to me, to see what you make of the
Martin readily undertook this task, and Mr.
Pecksniff forthwith proceeded to entrust him
with the materials necessary for its execution :
dwelling meanwhile on the magical effect of a
few finishing touches from the hand of a master;
which, indeed, as some people said (and these
were the old enemies again !) was unquestion-
ably very surprising, and almost miraculous ; as
there were cases on record in which the masterly
introduction of an additional "back window, or a
kitchen door, or half-a-dozen steps, or even a
water spout, had made the design of a pupil
Mr. Pecksniff's own work, and had brought sub-
stantial rewards into that gentleman's pocket.
But such is the magic of genius, which changes
all it handles into gold !
" When your mind requires to be refreshed,
by change of occupation," said Mr. Pecksniff,
" Thomas Pinch will instruct you in the art of
surveying the back garden, or in ascertaining
the dead level of the road between this house
and the finger-post, or in any other practical
and pleasing pursuit. There are a cart-load of
loose bricks, and a score or two of old flower-
pots, in the back-yard. If you could pile them
up, my dear Martin, into any form which would
remind me on my return — say of St. Peter's at
Rome, or the Mosque of St. Sophia at Con-
stantinople — it would be at once improving to
you and agreeable to my feelings. And now,"
said Mr. Pecksniff, in conclusion, " to drop, for
the present, our professional relations and ad-
vert to private matters, I shall be glad to talk
with you in my own room, while I pack up my
Martin attended him ; and they remained in
secret conference together for an hour or more ;
leaving Tom Pinch alone. When the young
man returned, he was very taciturn and dull, in
which state he remained all day ; so that Tom,
after trying hi 1-.4 once or twice with indifferent
conversation, felt a delicacy in obtruding him
self upon his thoughts, and said no more.
THERE IS A MISS PINCH!
He would not have had leisure to say much,
had his new friend been ever so loquacious:
for first of all Mr. Pecksniff called him down to
stand upon the top of his portmanteau and
represent ancient statues there, until such time
as it would consent to be locked; and then
Miss Charity called him to come and cord her
trunk : and then Miss Mercy sent for him to
come and mend her box ; and then he wrote
the fullest possible cards for all the luggage ;
and then he volunteered to carry it all down-
stairs ; and after that to see it safely carried on
a couple of barrows to the old finger-post at the
end of the lane ; and then to mind it till the
coach came up. In short, his day's work would
have been a pretty heavy one for a porter, but
his thorough good-will made nothing of it ; and
as he sat upon the luggage at last, waiting for
the Pecksniffs, escorted by the new pupil, to
come down the lane, his heart was light with
the hope of having pleased his benefactor.
" I was almost afraid," said Tom, taking a
letter from his pocket, and wiping his face, for
he was hot with bustling about though it was a
cold day, " that I shouldn't have had time to
write it, and that would have been a thousand
pities : postage from such a distance being a
serious consideration, when one's not rich. She
will be glad to see my hand, poor girl, and to
hear that Pecksniff is as kind as ever. I would
have asked John Westlock to call and see her,
and tell her all about me by word of mouth,
but I was afraid he might speak against Peck-
sniff to her, and make her uneasy. Besides,
they are particular people where she is, and it
might have rendered her situation uncomfortable
if she had had a visit from a young man like
John. Poor Ruth!"
Tom Pinch seemed a little disposed to be
melancholy for half a minute or so, but he found
comfort very soon, and pursued his ruminations
" I'm a nice man, I don't think, as John used
to say (John was a kind, merry-hearted fellow :
1 wish he had liked Pecksniff better) to be feel-
ing low on account of the distance between us,
when I ought to be thinking, instead, of my
extraordinary good-luck in having ever got
here. I must have been born with a silver
spoon in my mouth, I am sure, to have ever
come across Pecksniff. And here have I fallen
again into my usual good-luck with the new
pupil ! Such an affable, generous, free fellow,
as he is, I never saw. Why, we were com-
panions directly ! and he a relation of Peck-
sniffs too, and a clever, dashing youth who
might cut his way through the world as if it
were a cheese ! Here he comes while the
words are on my lips," said Tom; '• walking
down the lane as if the lane belonged to him."
In truth, the new pupil, not at all discon-
certed by the honour of having Miss Mercy
Pecksniff on his arm, or by the affectionate
adieux of that young lady, approached as Mr.
Pinch spoke, followed by Miss Charity and Mr.
Pecksniff. As the coach appeared at the same
moment, Tom lost no time in entreating the
gentleman last mentioned, to undertake the de-
livery of his letter.
"Oh!" said Mr. Pecksniff, glancing at the
superscription. " For your sister, Thomas.
Yes, oh yes, it shall be delivered, Mr. Pinch.
Make your mind easy upon that score. She
shall certainly have it, Mr. Pinch."
He made the promise with so much conde-
scension and patronage, that Tom felt he had
asked a great deal (this had not occurred to his
mind before), and thanked him earnestly. The
Miss Pecksniffs, according to a custom they
had, were amused beyond description, at the
mention of Mr. Pinch's sister. Oh the fright !
The bare idea of a Miss Pinch ! Good
Tom was greatly pleased to see them so
merry, for he took it as a token of their favour,
and good-humoured regard. Therefore he
laughed too and rubbed his hands, and wished
them a pleasant journey and safe return, and
was quite brisk. Even when the coach had
rolled away with the olive-branches in the boot
and the family of doves inside, he stood waving
his hand and bowing : so much gratified by the
unusually courteous demeanour of the young
ladies, that he was quite regardless, for the
moment, of Martin Chuzzlewit, who stood lean-
ing thoughtfully against the finger-post, and
who after disposing of his fair charge had
hardly lifted his eyes from the ground.
The perfect silence which ensued upon the
bustle and departure of the coach, together with
the sharp air of the wintry afternoon, roused
them both at the same time. They turned, as
by mutual consent, and moved oft", arm-in-arm.
"How melancholy you are!" said Tom;
"'what is the matter ?"
" Nothing worth speaking of," said Martin.
" Very little more than was the matter yester-
day, and much more, I hope, than will be the
matter to-morrow. I'm out of spirits, Pinch."
" Well," cried Tom, " now do you know I am
in capital spirits to-day, and scarcely ever felt
more disposed to be good company. It was a
very kind thing in your predecessor, John, to
write to me, was it not ? "
MARTTX CHI 'ZZLE JJ 'IT.
"Why, yes," said Martin carelessly: "I
should have thought he would have had enough
to do to enjov himself, without thinking of vou,
" Just what I felt to be so very likely, Tom
rejoined: "but no. he keeps his word, and
says, ' My dear Pinch, I often think of you,'
and all sorts of kind and considerate things of
" He must be a devilish good-natured fellow,"
said Martin, somewhat peevishly: "because he
can't mean that, you know."
" I don't suppose he can, eh ?" said Tom,
looking wistfully in his companion's face. " He
says so to please me, you think?"
" Why, is it likely," rejoined Martin, with
greater earnestness, " that a young man newly
escaped from this kennel of a place, and fresh to
all the delights of being his own master in Lon-
don, can have much leisure or inclination to
think favourably of anything or anybody he has
left behind him here? I put it to you, Pinch,
is it natural?"
After a short reflection, Mr. Pinch replied, in
a more subdued tone, that to be sure it was un-
reasonable to expect any such thing, and that
he had no doubt Martin knew best.
" Of course I know best," Martin observed.
'• Yes, 1 feel that," said Mr. Pinch, mildly.
"' I said so." And when he had made this re-
joinder, they fell into a blank silence again,
.which lasted until they reached home; by which
time it was dark.
Now, Miss Charity Pecksniff, in considera-
tion of the inconvenience of carrying them with
her in the coach, and the impossibility of pre-
serving them by artificial means until the family's
return, had set forth, in a couple of plates, the
fragments of yesterday's feast. In virtue of
'Aliuh liberal arrangement, they had the happi-
ness to find awaiting them in the parlour two
•chaotic heaps of the remains of 'last night's
pleasure, consisting of certain filmy bits of
■oranges, some mummied sandwiches, various
disrupted masses of the geological cake, and
several entire captain's biscuits. That choice
liquor in winch to steep these dainties might not
be wanting, the remains of the two bottles of cur-
rant wine had been poured together and corked
with a curl-paper; so that every material was at
hand for making quite a heavy night of it.
Martin Chuzzlewit beheld these roystefing
preparations with infinite contempt, and stirring
the fire into a blaze (to the great destruction of
Mr. Pecksniff's coals), sat moodily down before
it, in the most comfortable chair he could find.
That he might the better squeeze himself into
the small corner that was left for him, Mr.
Pinch took up his position on Miss Mercy
Pecksniff's stool, and setting his glass down
upon the hearth-rug ami putting his plate upon
his knees, began to enjoy himself
If Diogenes coming to life again could have
rolled himself, tub and all, into Mr. Pecksniff's
parlour, and could have seen Tom Pinch as he
sat on Mercy Pecksniff's stool with his plate and
glass before him, he could not have faced it out,
though in his surliest mood, but must have
smiled good-temperedly. The perfect and en-
tire satisfaction of Tom ; his surpassing appre-
ciation of the husky sandwiches, which crumbled
in his mouth like sawdust ; the unspeakable
relish with which he swallowed the thin wine by
drops, and smacked his lips, as though it were
so rich and generous that to lose an atom of its
fruity flavour were a sin ; the look with which
he paused sometimes, with his glass in his hand,
proposing silent toasts to himself ; and the
anxious shade that came upon his contented
face when after wandering round the room,
exulting in its uninvaded snugness, his glance
encountered the dull brow of his companion ;
no cynic in the world, though in his hatred of
its men a very griffin, could have withstood
these things in Thomas Pinch.
Some men would have slapped him on the
back, and pledged him in a bumper of the
currant wine, though it had been the sharpest
vinegar — ay, and liked its flavour too ; some
would have seized him by his honest hand, and
thanked him for the lesson that his simple nature
taught them. Some would have laughed with,
and others would have laughed at him ; of
which last class was Martin Chuzzlewit, who,
unable to restrain himself at last, laughed loud
"That's right," said Tom, nodding approv-
ingly. " Cheer up ! That's capital !"
At which encouragement, young Martin
laughed again : and said, as soon as he had
breath and gravity enough :
" I never saw such a fellow as you are,
"Didn't you though?" said Tom. "Well,
it's very likely you do find me strange, because
1 have hardly seen anything of the world, and
you have seen a good deal I dare say ?"
" Pretty well for my time of life," rejoined
.Martin, drawing his chair still nearer to the fire,
and spreading his feet out on the fender.
" Deuce take it, I must talk openly to some-
body. I'll talk openly to you, Pinch."
" Do !" said Tom. " I shall take it as being
very friendly of you."
THE NEW PUPIL CONFIDES.
" I'm not in your way, am I ?" inquired Mar-
tin, glancing down at Mr. Pinch, who was by
this time looking at the fire over his leg.
" Not at all ! " cried Tom.
" You must know then, to make short of a
long story," said Martin, beginning with a kind
of effort, as if the revelation were not agreeable
to him : " that I have been bred up from child-
hood with great expectations, and have always
been taught to believe that I should be, one
day, very rich. So I should have been, but for
certain brief reasons which I am going to tell
you, and which have led to my "being disin-
" By your father?" inquired Mr. Pinch, with
" By my grandfather. I have had no parents
these many years. Scarcely within my remem-
" Neither have I," said Tom, touching the
young man's hand with his own and timidly
withdrawing it again. " Dear me !"
OH CHIV, CHIV, MURMURED MR. TIGG, ' YOU HAVE A NOBLY INDEPENDENT NATURE, CHIV
" Why as to that you know, Pinch," pursued
the other, stirring the fire again, and speaking
in his rapid, off-hand way : " it's all very right
and proper to be fond of parents when w r e have
them, and to bear them in remembrance after
they're dead, if you have ever known anything
of them. But as I never did know anything
about mine personally, you know, why I can't
be expected to be very sentimental about 'em.
And I am not : that's the truth."
Mr. Pinch was just then looking thoughtfully
Martin Chuzzlewit, 4.
at the bars. But on his companion pausing in
this place, he started, and said, ' ; Oh ! of course"
— and composed himself to listen again.
" In a word," said Martin, " I have been bred
and reared all my life by this grandfather of
whom I have just spoken. Now, he has a great
many good points ; there is no doubt about
that ; I'll not disguise the fact from you ; but
he has two very great faults, which are the
staple of his bad side. In the first place, he has
the most confirmed obstinacy of character you
MA R TIN CHUZZLE WIT.
ever met with in any human creature. In the
second, he is most abominably selfish."
" Is he indeed ?" cried Tom.
" In those two respects," returned the other,
" there never was such a man. I have often
heard from those who know, that they have
been, time out of mind, the failings of our
family; and I believe there's some truth in it.
But I can't say of my own knowledge. All I
have to do, you know, is to be very thankful
that they haven't descended to me, and to be
very careful that I don't contract 'em."
" To be sure," said Mr. Pinch. " Very proper."
" Well, sir," resumed Martin, stirring the fire
once more, and drawing his chair still closer to
it, " his selfishness makes him exacting, you see ;
and his obstinacy makes him resolute in his
exactions. The consequence is that he has
always exacted a great deal from me in the way
of respect, and submission, and self-denial when
his wishes were in question, and so forth. I
have borne a great deal from him, because I
have been under obligations to him (if one can
ever be said to be under obligations to one's
own grandfather), and because I have been
really attached to him ; but we have had a great
many quarrels for all that, for I could not ac-
commodate myself to his ways very often — not
out of the least reference to myself you under-
stand, but because " he stammered here, and
was rather at a loss.
Mr. Pinch being about the worst man in the
world to help anybody out of a difficulty of this
sort, said nothing.
" Well ! as you understand me," resumed
Martin, quickly, " I needn't hunt for the precise
expression I want. Now, I come to the cream
of my story, and the occasion of my being here.
I am in love, Pinch."
Mr. Pinch looked up into his face with in-
" I say I am in love. I am in love with one
of the most beautiful girls the sun ever shone
upon. But she is wholly and entirely dependent
upon the pleasure of my grandfather ; and if he
were to know that she favoured my passion, she
would lose her home and everything she pos-
sesses in the world. There is nothing very
selfish in that love, I think ?"
"Selfish!" cried Tom. "You have acted
nobly. To love her as I am sure you do, and
yet in consideration for her state of dependence,
not even to disclose "
" What are you talking about, Pinch ?" said
Martin pettishly: " don't make yourself ridicu-
lous, my good fellow ! What do you mean by
not disclosing ?"
" I beg your pardon," answered Tom. " I
thought you meant that, or 1 wouldn't have
" If I didn't tell her I loved her, where would
be the use of my being in love ?" said Martin:
" unless to keep myself in a perpetual state of
worry and vexation ?"
" That's true," Tom answered. " Well '. I can
guess what she said when you told her,'' he
added, glancing at Martin's handsome face.
" Why, not exactly, Pinch," he rejoined, with
a slight frown : " because she has some girlish
notions about duty and gratitude, and all the
rest of it, which are rather hard to fathom ; but
in the main you are right. Her heart was mine,
" Just what I supposed," said Tom. " Quite
natural !" and, in his great satisfaction, he took
a long sip out of his wine-glass.
" Although I had conducted myself from the
first with the utmost circumspection," pursued
Martin, " I had not managed matters so well
but that my grandfather, who is full of jealousy
and distrust, suspected me of loving her. He
said nothing to her, but straightway attacked me
in private, and charged me with designing to
corrupt the fidelity to himself (there you ob-
serve his selfishness), of a young creature whom
he had trained and educated to be his only
disinterested and faithful companion when he-
should have disposed of me in marriage to his
heart's content. Upon that, I took fire im-
mediately, and told him that with his good
leave I would dispose of myself in marriage,
and would rather not be knocked down by