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GEORGE WOODFALL AND SON,
ANGKf. roiRT, SKIN'NER STREKT.
THE SCHOLAR— THE GYPSY— THE PRIEST.
BY GEORGE BORROW,
AUTHOR OF "THE BIBLE IX SPAIN," AND "THE GYPSIES OF SPAIN.
m THREE VOLUMES.— VOL. H.
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.
By the same Author,
THE BIBLE IN SPAIN; or, The Journeys, Ad-
ventures, and Imprisonments of an Englishman
in an attempt to circulate the Scriptures in the
Peninsula. Fourth Edition. 3 vols, post 8vo. '27s.
THE ZINCALI ; or, An Account of the Gypsies
of Spain, with an original Collection of their Songs
and Poetry, and a copious Dictionary of their Lan-
guage. Third Edition. 2 vols, post 8vo. 18s.
*;!;* The above Works way also he obtained in Two
Volumes Post Qvo, 6s. each.
CONTENTS OF VOL. 11.
The Greeting. — Queer Figure. — Cheer up. — The cheerful
Fire.— It wiU do.— The Sally forth. — Trepidation. — Let
him come in 1
The sinister Glance. — Excellent Correspondent. — Quite
original. — My System. — A losing Trade. — Merit. — Start-
ing a Review, — What have you got ? — Stop ! — Dairj'man's
Daughter.— Oxford Principles. — More Conversation. — How
is this? ,. ^ ........ 9
The Walk. — London's Cheape. — Street of the Lombards. —
Strange Bridge. — Main Arch. — The roaring Gulf. — The
Boat.— Cly-faking.— A Comfort.— The Book.— The blessed
Woman.— No Trap 22
The Tanner. — The Hotel. — Drinking Claret. — London
Journal. — New Field. — Common-placeness. — The three
Individuals. — Botheration. — Frank and ardent . . .34
VOL. II. b
Dine with the Publisher. — Religions. — No animal Food. —
Unprofitable Discussions. — Principles of Criticism. — The
Book Market. — N^ewgate Lives. — Goethe a Drug. — German
Acquirements. — Moral Dignity 44
The two Yolumes. — A young Author. — Intended Editor.
— Quintilian. — Loose Money 54
Francis Ardry. — Certain Sharpers. — Brave and eloquent. —
Opposites. — Flinging the Bones. — Strange Places. — Dog-
fighting. — Learning and Letters. — Batch of Dogs. — Re-
doubled Application 59
Occupations.— Traduttore Traditore. — Ode to the Mist. —
Apple and Pear. — Reviewing. — Current Literature. — Ox-
ford-like Manner. — A plain Story. — Ill-regulated Mind. —
Unsnuffed Candle. — Strange Dreams 69
My Brother. — Fits of Crying. — Mayor elect. — The Com-
mittee. — The Norman Arch. — A Word of Greek. — Church
and State. — At my own Expense. — If you please . .80
Painter of the heroic. — I '11 go ! — A modest Peep. — Who is
this? — A capital Pharaoh. — Disproportionably short. —
Imaginary Picture. — English Figures 89
No Authority whatever. — Interference. — Wondrous Far-
rago.— Brandt and Struensee. — What a Life ! — The Hearse.
Mortal Relics. — Great Poet. — Fashion and Fame. — What a
Difference. — Oh, beautiful. — Good for l^othing . . .97
London Bridge. — Why not 1 — Every Heart has its Bitters.
— Wicked Boys. — Give me my Book. — Such a Fright. —
Honour bright 109
Decease of the Review. — Homer himself. — Bread and
Cheese. — Finger and Thumb. — Impossible to find. — Some-
thing grand. — Univer.sal Mixture. — Some other Publisher . 116
Francis Ardry. — That won't do, sir. — Observe my Ges-
tures. — I think you improve. — Better than Politics. — De-
lightful young Frenchwoman. — A burning Shame. — Magni-
ficent Impudence. — Paunch. — Yoltaire. — Lump of Sugar . 124
Progress. — Glorious John. — Utterly unintelligible. — What
a DiflPerence 135
The old Spot. — A long History. — Thou shalt not steal. —
No Harm. — Education. — Necessity. — Foam on your Lip.
— Apples and Pears. — What will you read 1 — Metaphor.
—The fur Cap.— I don't know him 139
Bouglit and exchanged. — Quite empty. — A new Firm. —
Bibles. — Countenance of a Lion. — Clap of Thunder. — A
truce with this. — I have lost it. — Clearly a Right. — God-
dess of the Mint 151
The Pickpocket. — Strange Rencounter. — Drag him along.
— A Great Service. — Things of Importance. — Philological
Matters. — Mother of Languages. — Zhats ! . . . .161
New Acquaintance. — "Wired Cases. — Bread and Wine. —
Armenian Colonies. — Learning without Money. — What a
Language. — The Tide.^Your Foible. — Learning of the
Haiks. — Old Proverb. — Pressing Invitation . . ,169
What to do. — Strong enough. — Fame and Profit. — Allite-
rative Euphony.^Excellent Fellow. — Listen to me.— A
Plan.— Bagnigge Wells 180
Singular Personage. — A large Sum. — Papa of Rome. — We
are Christians. — Degenerate Armenians. — Roots of Ararat.
— Regular Features . ' . . . . . . .188
Wish fulfilled. — Extraordinary Figure. — Bueno. — N'oah. —
The two Faces. — I don't blame him. — Too fond of Money.
— Were I an Armenian 195
The one half-crown. — Merit in Patience. — Cementer of
Friendship. — Dreadful Perplexity. — The usual Guttural. —
Armenian Letters. — Much indebted to you. — Pure Help-
lessness. — Dumb People 203
Kind of Stupor. — Peace of God. — Divine Hand.— Farewell,
Child.— The Fair.— Massive Edifice.— Battered Tars.— Lost !
Lost ! — Good Day, Gentlemen 212
Singular Table. — No Money.^Out of Employ. — My Bonnet.
— We of the Thimble. — Good Wages. — "Wisely resolved. —
Strangest Way in the World. — Fat Gentleman. — !N'ot such
another. — First Edition. — Xot very fast. — Won't close. —
Avella Gorgio Alarmed Look 221
Mr. Petulengro. — Rommany Rye. ^Lil- Writers. — One's own
Horn. — Lawfully-eamt Money. — The wooded Hill. — A
great Favourite. — The Shop Window. — Much wanted . 236
Bread and Water. — Fair Play. — Fashionable Life. — Colonel
B . . . .—Joseph Sell. — The kindly Glow. — Easiest Manner
Considerably sobered. — Power of Writing. -The Tempter.
Hungry Talent.— Work concluded 252
Nervous Look.— The Bookseller's Wife.— The last Stake.
— Terms. — God forbid. — Will you come to Tea? — A light
Indisposition. — A Resolution. — Poor Equivalents. — The
Piece of Gold. — Flashing Eyes. — How beautiful. — Bon Jour,
The Milestone — The Meditation. — Want to get up ? — The
off-hand Leader. — Sixteen Shillings. — The near-hand
Wheeler.— All right 271
The still Hour A Thrill.— The wondrous Circle.— The
Shepherd. — Heaps and Barrows. — What do you mean? —
Milk of the Plains. — Hengist spared it. — No Presents . 278
The River. — Arid Downs. — A Prospect .... 287
The Hostelry. — Life uncertain. — Open Countenance. — The
grand Point. — Thank you, Master. — A hard Mother. —
Poor Dear ! — Considerable Odds. — The better Country.
— English Fashion. — Landlord-looking Person . . . 290
Primitive Habits. — Rosy-faced Damsel. — A pleasant Mo-
ment. — Suit of Black. — The furtive Glance. — The mighty
Round. — Degenerate Times. — The Newspaper. — The Evil
Chance. — I congratulate you 301
New Acquaintance. — Old. French Style.*— The Portrait. —
Taciturnity. — The evergreen Tree. — The dark Hour. —
The Flash.— Ancestors.— A fortunate Man. — A posthumous
Child. — Antagonist Ideas. — The Hawks. — Flaws. — The
Pony Irresistible Impulse. — Favourable Crisis. — The top-
most Branch.— Twenty Feet. — Heartily ashamed . . 311
Maternal Anxiety. — The Baronet. — Little Zest. — Country
Life. — Mr. Speaker ! — The Craving. — Spirited Address. —
An Author 330
Trepidations. — Subtle Principle. — Perverse Imagination. —
Are they mine? — Another Book. — How hard ! — Agricul-
tural Dinner. — Incomprehensible Actions. — Inmost Bosom.
— Give it up. — Chance Resemblance. — Rascally Newspaper 338
Disturbed Slumbers The Bed-post. — Two Wizards. —
What can I do ]— Real Library-.— The Rev, Mr Platitude
— Toleration to Dissenters. — Paradox. — Sword of St. Peter.
— Enemy to Humbug. — High Principles. — False Concord.
— The Damsel. — What Religion ? - 7Farther Conversation.
— That would never do ! — May you prosper . . . 350
THE GREETING. QUEER FIGURE. CHEER UP. THE CHEERFUL
FIRE. — IT WILL DO. THE SALLY FORTH. — TREPIDATION. — LET
HIM COME IN.
" ONE-and-ninepence, sir, or the things which you
have brought with you will he taken away from
you ! "
Such were the first words which greeted my ears,
one damp misty morning in March, as I dis-
mounted fi'om the top of a coach in the yard of
a London inn.
I turned round, for I felt that the words were
addressed to myself. Plenty of people were in the
yard — porters, passengers, coachmen, hostlers, and
others, who appeared to be intent on anything but
myself, with the exception of one individual, whose
VOL. II. B
2 QUEER FIGURE. [Ck I.
business appeared to lie -svith me, and who now con-
fronted me at the distance of about two yards.
I looked hard at the man — and a queer kind of
individual he was to look at — a rakish figure, about
Thirty, and of the middle size, dressed in a coat
smartly cut, but threadbare, very tight pantaloons
of blue stuff, tied at the ancles, dirty white stock-
ings and thin shoes, like those of a dancing- master;
his features were not ugly, but rather haggard, and
he appeared to owe his complexion less to nature
than carmine; in fact, in every respect, a very queer
" One-and-ninepence, sir, or your thiugs will be
taken away from you I " he said, in a kind of lisping
tone, coming yet nearer to me.
I still remained staring fixedly at him, but never
a word answered. Our eyes met; whereupon he
suddenly lost the easy impudent air which he before
wore. He glanced, for a moment, at my fist, which
I had by this time clenched, and his features be-
came vet more haggard; he faltered; a fresh ■'one-
and-ninepence," which he was about to utter, died
on his lips ; he shrank back, disappeared behind a
coach, and I saw no more of him.
Ch. I.] CHEER UP. 3
'' One-and-ninepence, or my things will be taken
awav from me 1 " said I to myself, musin2"ly, as I
followed the porter to whom I had delivered mv
scanty baggage ; " am I to expect many of these
greetings in the big world ? Well, never mind I
I tliink I know the counter-sign!" And I clenched
mv fist yet harder than before.
So I followed the porter, tlu'ough the streets of
London, to a lodging wliieh had been prepai'ed for
me by an acquaintance. The morning, as I have
before said, was gloomy, and the streets tlu'ough
which I passed were dank and filthy : the people,
also, looked dank and filthy ; and so, probably, did
T, for the night had Ijeen rainy, and I liad corae
upwards of a himdred miles on the top of a coach ;
my heart liad sunk within me. by the time we
reached a dark narrow street, in which was tlie
'^ Cheer up, young man,"" said the porter, " we
shall have a fine afternoon ! "
And presently I found myself in the lodging
which had been prepared for me. It consisted of
a small room, up two pair of stairs, in which I
was to sit, and another still smaller above it, in
4 THE CHEERFUL FIRE. [Ch. I.
which I was to sleep. I remember that I sat
down, and looked disconsolate about me — every-
thing seemed so cold and dingy. Yet how little
is required to make a situation — however cheerless
at first sight — cheerful and comfortable. The
people of the house, who looked kindly upon me,
lighted a fire in the dingy grate; and, then, what
a change ! — the dingy room seemed dingy no more I
Oh, the luxury of a cheerful fire after a chill
night's journey! I drew near to the blazing grate,
rubbed my hands, and felt glad.
And, when I had warmed myself, I turned to the
table, on which, by this time, the people of the
house had placed my breakfast; and I ate and
I di-ank; and, as I ate and drank, I mused witliin
myself, and my eyes were frequently directed to a
small green box, which constituted part of my lug-
gage, and which, with the rest of my things, stood
in one comer of the room, till at last, leaving my
breakfast unfinished, I rose, and, going to the box,
unlocked it, and took out two or three bundles of
papers tied with red tape, and, placing them on the
table, I resumed my seat and my breakfast, my eyes
intently fixed upon the bundles of papers all the time.
Ch. I.] IT WILL DO.
And when I had drained the last cup of tea out
of a dingy teapot, and ate the last slice of the dingy
loaf, I untied one of the bundles, and proceeded to
look over the papers, which were closely written
over in a singular hand, and I read for some time,
till at last I said to myself, '' It will do." And then
I looked at the other bundle for some time without
untying it; and at last I said, ''It will do also."
And then I turned to the fire, and, putting my feet
against the sides of the grate, I leaned hack on my
chair, and, with my eyes upon the fire, fell into deep
And there I continued in thought before the fire,red less, no other articles should be required
from me than such as were connected with belles-
lettres and philology ; to this the big man readily
assented. " Nothing will be required from you," said
he, " but what you mention ; and now and then, per-
haps, a paper on metaphysics. You understand
German, and perhaps it would be desirable that you
should review Kant ; and in a review of Kant, sir, you
could introduce to advantage your pecuHar notions
about ex nihilo." He then reverted to the subject
of the "'Dairyman's Daughter," which I promised to
take into consideration. As I was going away, he
invited me to dine with him on the ensuing Sunday.
" That 's a strange man ! " said I to myself, after
I had left the house, '' he is evidently very clever ;
but I cannot say that I like him much, with his
Oxford Reviews and Dairyman's Daughters. But
what can I do ; I am almost without a friend
Ch. II.] HOW IS THIS? 21
in the world. I wish I could find some one who
would publish my ballads, or my songs of Ab
Gwilym. In spite of what the big man says, I am
convinced that, once published, they would bring
me much fame and profit. But how is this? — what
a beautiful sun ! — the porter was right in saying that
the day would clear up — I will now go to my dingy
lodging, lock up my manuscripts, and then take a
stroll about the big city."
THE WALK. — London's cheape. — street of the Lombards
STRANGE BRIDGE. — MAIN ARCH. — THE ROARING GULP. — THE BOAT.
CLY-FAKING. — A COMFORT. — THE BOOK. — THE BLESSED WOMAN.
So I set out on my walk to see the wonders of the
big city, and, as chance would have it, I directed
my course to the east. The day, as I have already
said, had become very fine, so that I saw the great
city to advantage, and the wonders thereof: and
much I admired all I saw; and, amongst other
things, the huge cathedral, standing so proudly on
the most commanding ground in the big city ; and
I looked up to the mighty dome, surmounted by a
golden cross, and I said witliin myself, " That
dome must needs be the finest in the world;"
and I gazed upon it till my eyes reeled, and my
brain became dizzy, and I thought that the dome
would fall and crush me ; and I shrank witliin my-
self, and struck yet deeper into the heart of the
Ch. III.] London's cheape. 23
''0 Cheapside ! Cheapside!" said T, as I ad-
vanced up that mighty thoroughfare, '^ truly thou
art a wonderful place for hurry, noise, and riches !
Men talk of the bazaars of the East — I have never
seen them — but I dare say that, compared with
thee, they are poor places, silent places, abounding
with empty boxes, thou pride of London's east !
— mighty mart of old renown I — for thou art not a
place of yesterday : — long before the Eoses red and
white battled in fair England, thou didst exist — a
place of tlirong and bustle — a place of gold and
silver, perfiunes and fine linen. Centuries ago thou
couldst extort the praises even of the fiercest foes
of England. Fierce bards of Wales, sworn foes of
England, sang thy praises centuries ago ; and even
the fiercest of them all, Ked JuUus himself, wild
Glendower's bard, had a word of praise for London's
"Cheape," for so the bards of Wales styled thee in
their flowing odes. Then, if those who were not
English, and hated England, and all connected
therewith, had yet much to say in thy praise, when
thou wast far inferior to what thou art now, why
should true-born Englishmen, or those who call
themselves so, turn up their noses at thee, and scoff
24 STREET OF THE LOMBARDS. [Ch. III.
thee at the present day, as I believe they do ? But,
let others do as they will, I, at least, who am not
only an EngUsliman, but an East Englishman, will
not turn up my nose at thee, but will praise and
extol thee, calhng thee mart of the world — a place
of wonder and astonishment ! — and, were it right and
fitting to wish that anything should endure for
ever, I would say prosperity to Cheapside, through-
out all ages — may it be the world's resort for mer-
chandise, world without end.
And when I had passed through the Cheape I
entered another street, which led up a kind of ascent,
and which proved to be the street of the Lombards,
called so from the name of its first founders ; and I
walked rapidly up the street of the Lombards,
neither looking to the right nor left, for it had
no interest for me, though I had a kind of con-
sciousness that mighty tilings were being transacted
behind its walls ; but it wanted the throng, bustle,
and outward magnificence of the Cheape, and it
had never been spoken of by " ruddy bards ! " And,
when I had got to the end of the street of the Lom-
bards, I stood still for some time, deliberating
within myself whether I should turn to the right or
Ch. III.] STRANGE BRIDGE. 25
the left, or go straight forward, and at last I turned
to the right, down a street of rapid descent, and
presently found myself upon a hridge which tra-
versed the river which runs by the big city.
A strange kind of bridge it was ; huge and mas-
sive, and seemingly of gi'eat antiquity. It had an
arched back, Hke that of a hog, a high balustrade,
and at either side, at intervals, were stone bowers
bulking over the river, but open on the other side,
and furnished with a semicircular bench. Though
the bridge was wide — very wide — it was all too nar-
row for the concourse upon it. Thousands of human
beings were pouring over the bridge. But what
chiefly struck my attention was a double row of
carts and wagons, the generahty drawn by horses
as large as elephants, each row striving hard in a
different direction, and not unfrequently brought to
a stand-still. Oh the cracking of whips, the shouts
and oaths of the carters, and the grating of wheels
upon the enoiTuous stones that formed the pavement!
In fact, there was a wild hurly-burly upon the
bridge, which neariy deafened me. But, if upon the
bridge there was a confusion, below it there was a
confusion ten times confounded. The tide, which
VOL. II. n
26 MAIN ARCH. [Ch. III.
was fast ebbing, obstructed by the immense piers
of the old bridge, poured beneath the arches with
a fall of several feet, forming in the river below as
many whirlpools as there were arches. Truly tre-
mendous was the roar of the descending waters, and
the bellow of the tremendous gulfs, which swal-
lowed them for a time, and then cast them forth,
foaming and frothing from their horrid wombs.
Slowly advancing along the bridge, I came to the
highest point, and there I stood still, close beside
one of the stone bowers, in which, beside a fruit-
stall, sat an old woman, with a pan of charcoal at
her feet, and a book in her hand, in which she ap-
peared to be reading intently. There I stood, just
above the principal arch, looking through the balus-
trade at the scene that presented itself — and such
a scene ! Towards the left bank of the river, a
forest of masts, tliick and close, as far as the eye
could reach; spacious wharfs, surmounted T\dth
gigantic edifices ; and, far away, Caesar's Castle, with
its White Tower. To the right, another forest of
masts, and a maze of buildings, from wliich, here
and there, shot up to the sky cliimneys taller than
Cleopatra's Needle, vomiting forth huge wreaths of
Ch. III.] THE ROARING GULF. 27
that black smoke which forms the canopy — occa-
sionally a gorgeous one — of the more than Babel
city. Stretching before me, the troubled breast of
the mighty river, and, immediately below, the main
whirlpool of the Thames — the Maelstrom of the
bulwarks of the middle arch — a grisly pool, wliich,
with its superabundance of hon'or, fascinated me.
Who knows but I should have leapt into its depths ?
— I have heard of such things — but for a rather
startling occurrence which broke the spell. As I
stood upon the bridge, gazing into the jaws of the
pool, a small boat shot suddenly through the arch
beneath my feet. There were tln-ee persons in
it; an oarsman in the middle, wliilst a man and
woman sat at the steiTi. I shall never forget the
thrill of horror wliich went through me at tliis sud-
den apparition. What! — a boat— a small boat —
passing beneath that arch into yonder roaring gulf!
Yes, yes, down through that awful water-way, with
more than the swiftness of an arrow, shot the boat,
or skiff, right into the jaws of the pool. A mon-
strous breaker curls over the prow — there is no
hope ; the boat is swamped, and' all drowned in that
28 THE BOAT. [Ch. III.
strangling vortex. No ! the boat, which appeared
to have the buoyancy of a feather, skipped over the
threatening horror, and, the next moment, was out
of danger, the boatman — a true boatman of Cock-
aigne that — elevating one of his sculls in sign of
triumph, the man hallooing, and the woman, a true
Englishwoman that — of a certain class — waving her
shawl. Whether any one observed them save my-
self, or whether the feat was a common one, I know
not; but nobody appeared to take any notice of
them. As for myself, I. was so excited, that I
strove to clamber up the balustrade of the bridge,
in order to obtain a better view of the daring
adventurers. Before I could accomphsh my design,
however, I felt myself seized by the body, and,
turning my head, perceived the old fruit-woman,
who was chnging to me.
"Nay, dear! don't — don't I" said she. "Don't
fling yourself over — perhaps you may have better
luck next time ! "
" I was not going to fling myself over," said I,
dropping from the balustrade; "how came you to
think of such a thing ? "
Ch. III.] CLY-FAKING. 29
"Why, seeing you clamber up so fiercely, I
thought you might have had ill luck, and that you
wished to make away with yourself."
" 111 luck," said I, going into the stone hoover,
and sitting down. '' What do you mean ? ill luck
in what ? "
"Why, no great harm, dear! cly-faking per-
" Are you coming over me with dialects," said I,
*' speaking unto me in fashions I wot nothing of?"
"Nay, dear! don't look so strange with those
eyes of your'n, nor talk so strangely ; I don't under-
"Nor I you; what do you mean by cly-faking?"
" Lor, dear ! no harm ; only taking a handker-
chief now and then."
" Do you take me for a thief? "
"Nay, dear! don't make use of had language;