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of stone to be laid down, at measured distances, throughout the whole of
the basin, and in which other stone uprights were secured. The necessary
inscriptions were graved on proper tablets, and as we approached the
one already named, I observed that it had the image of a monikin, carved
also in stone, with his tail extended in a right line, pointing, as Mr.
Poke assured me, S. and by W. half W. I had made sufficient progress
in the monikin language to read, as we glided past this watermark - "To
Leaphigh, - 15 miles." One monikin mile, however, we were next told, was
equal to nine English statute miles; and, consequently, we were not so
near our port as was at first supposed. I expressed great satisfaction
at finding ourselves so fairly on the road, however, and paid Dr.
Reasono some well-merited compliments on the high state of civilization
to which his species had evidently arrived. The day was not distant,
I added, when it was reasonable to suppose, our own seas would have
floating restaurants and cafes, with suitable pot-houses for the
mariners; though I did not well see how we were to provide a substitute
for their own excellent organization of mile-stones. The Doctor received
my compliments with becoming modesty, saying that he had no doubt
mankind would do all that lay in their power to have good eating and
drinking-houses, whereever they could be established; but as to the
marine milestones, he agreed with me, that there was little hope of
their being planted, until the crust of the earth should be driven
upwards, so as to rise within four fathoms of the surface of the water.
On the other hand, Captain Poke held this latter improvement very cheap.
He affirmed it was no sign of civilization at all, for, as a man became
civilized, he had less need of primers and finger-boards; and, as for
Leaphigh, any tolerable navigator could see it bore S. by W. half W.
allowing for variation, distant 135 English miles. To these objections
I was silent, for I had frequent occasion to observe that men very often
underrate any advantage of which they have come into the enjoyment by a
providential interposition.

Just as the sun was in the meridian, the cry of "land ahead" was heard
from aloft. The monikins were all smiles and gratitude; the crew were
excited by admiration and wonder; and as for myself, I was literally
ready to jump out of my skin, not only with delight, but, in some
measure also, from the exceeding warmth of the atmosphere. Our cats
and dogs began to uncase; Bob was obliged to unmask his most exposed
frontier, by removing the union-jack; and Noah himself fairly appeared
on deck in his shirt and night-cap. The amiable strangers were too much
occupied to be particular, and I slipped into my state-room to change my
toilet to a dress of thin silk, that was painted to resemble the skin of
a polar bear - a contradiction between things that is much too common in
our species ever to be deemed out of fashion.

We neared the land with great rapidity, impelled by a steam-breeze, and
just as the sun sank in the horizon our anchor was let go, in the outer
harbor of the city of Aggregation.




CHAPTER XV. AN ARRIVAL - FORMS OF RECEPTION - SEVERAL NEW CHRISTENINGS - AN
OFFICIAL DOCUMENT, AND TERRA FIRMA.


It is always agreeable to arrive safe, at the end of a long, fatiguing,
and hazardous journey. But the pleasure is considerably augmented when
the visit is paid to a novel region, with a steam-climate, and which is
peopled by a new species. My own satisfaction, too was coupled with the
reflection that I had been of real service to four very interesting and
well-bred strangers, who had been cast, by an adverse fortune, into the
hands of humanity, and who owed to me a boon far more precious than life
itself - a restoration to their natural and acquired rights, their
proper stations in society, and sacred liberty! The reader will judge,
therefore, with what inward self-congratulation I now received the
acknowledgments of the whole monikin party, and listened to their most
solemn protestations ever to consider, not only all they might jointly
and severally possess in the way of estates and dignities, at my entire
disposal, but their persons as my slaves. Of course, I made as light as
possible of any little service I might have done them, protesting in my
turn, that I looked upon the whole affair more in the light of a party
of pleasure than a tax, reminding them that I had not only obtained an
insight into a new philosophy, but that I was already, thanks to the
decimal system, a tolerable proficient in their ancient and learned
language. These civilities were scarcely well over, before we were
boarded by the boat of the port-captain.

The arrival of a human ship was an event likely to create excitement in
a monikin country; and as our approach had been witnessed for several
hours, preparations had been made to give us a proper reception. The
section of the academy to whom is committed the custody of the "Science
of Indications," was hastily assembled by order of the king, who, by
the way, never speaks except through the mouth of his oldest male first
cousin, who, by the fundamental laws of the realm, is held responsible
for all his official acts (in private, the king is allowed almost as
many privileges as any other monikin), and who, as is due to him in
simple justice, is permitted to exercise, in a public point of view, the
functions of the eyes, ears, nose, conscience, and tail of the monarch.
The savans were active, and as they proceeded with method, and
on well-established principles, their report was quickly made. It
contained, as we afterwards understood, seven sheets of premises, eleven
of argument, sixteen of conjecture, and two lines of deduction. This
heavy draft on the monikin intellect was duly achieved by dividing the
work into as many parts as there were members of the section present,
viz., forty. The substance of their labors was, to say that the vessel
in sight was a strange vessel; that it came to a strange country, on
a strange errand, being manned by strangers; and that its objects
were more likely to be peaceful than warlike, since the glasses of the
academy did not enable them to discover any means of annoyance, with the
exception of certain wild beasts, who appeared, however, to be peaceably
occupied in working the ship. All this was sententiously expressed in
the purest monikin language. The effect of the report was, to cause all
hostile preparations to be abandoned.

No sooner did the boat of the port-captain return to the shore with the
news that the strange ship had arrived with my Lord Chatterino, my Lady
Chatterissa and Dr. Reasono than there was a general burst of joy along
the strand. In a very short time the king - alias his eldest first cousin
of the male gender - ordered the usual compliments to be paid to his
distinguished subjects. A deputation of young lords the hopes of
Leaphigh came off to receive their colleague; whilst a bevy of
beautiful maidens of noble birth crowded around the smiling and graceful
Chatterissa, gladdening her heart with their caressing manners and
felicitations. The noble pair left us in separate boats, each attended
by an appropriate escort. We overlooked the little neglect of forgetting
to take leave of us, for joy had quite set them both beside themselves.
Next came a long procession composed of high numbers, all of the
"brown-study color." These learned and dignified persons were a
deputation from the academy, which had sent forth no less than forty
of its number to receive Dr. Reasono. The meeting between these loving
friends of monikinity and of knowledge, was conducted on the most
approved principles of reason. Each section (there are forty in the
academy of Leaphigh) made an address, to all of which the Doctor
returned suitable replies, always using exactly the same sentiments, but
varying the subject by transpositions, as dictionaries are known to be
composed by the ingenious combinations of the twenty-six letters of
the alphabet. Dr. Reasono withdrew with his coadjutors, to my surprise
paying not a whit more attention to Captain Poke and myself, than would
be paid in any highly-civilized country of Christendom, on a similar
occasion, by a collection of the learned, to the accidental presence of
two monkeys. I thought this augured badly, and began to feel as became
Sir John Goldencalf, Bart., of Householder Hall, in the kingdom of Great
Britain, when my sensations were nipped in the bud by the arrival of the
officers of registration and circulation. It was the duty of the latter
to give us the proper passports to enter into and to circulate within
the country, after the former had properly enregistered our numbers and
colors, in such a way as to bring us within the reach of taxation. The
officer of registration was very expeditious from long practice. He
decided, at once, that I formed a new class by myself; of which, of
course, I was No. 1. The captain and his two mates formed another, Nos.
1, 2, and 3. Bob had a class also to himself, and the honors of No. 1;
and the crew formed a fresh class, being numbered according to height,
as the register deemed their merits to be altogether physical. Next came
the important point of color, on which depended the quality of the class
or caste, the numbers merely indicating our respective stations in
the particular divisions. After a good deal of deliberation, and many
interrogatories, I was enregistered as No. 1, flesh-color. Noah as No.
1, sea-water color, and his mates 2 and 3, accordingly. Bob as No. 1,
smut-color, and the crew as Nos. 1, 2, 3, etc., tar-color. The
officer now called upon an assistant to come forth with a sort of
knitting-needle heated red-hot, in order to affix the official stamp to
each in succession. Luckily for us all, Noah happened to be the first to
whom the agent of the stamp-office applied, to uncase and to prepare
for the operation. The result was one of those bursts of eloquent and
logical vituperation, and of remonstrating outcries, to which any
new personal exaction never failed to give birth in the sealer. His
discourse on this occasion might be divided into the several following
heads, all of which were very ingeniously embellished by the usual
expletives and imagery: - "He was not a beast to be branded like a horse,
nor a slave to be treated like a Congo nigger; he saw no use in applying
the marks to men, who were sufficiently distinguished from monkeys
already; Sir John had a handle before his name, and if he liked it, he
might carry his name behind his body, by way of counterpoise, but for
his part, he wanted no outriggers of the sort, being satisfied with
plain Noah Poke; he was a republican, and it was anti-republican for a
man to carry about with him graven images; he thought it might be even
flying in the face of the Scriptures, or what was worse, turning his
back on them; he said that the Walrus had her name, in good legible
characters on her starn, and that might answer for both of them; he
protested, d - n his eyes, that he wouldn't be branded like a thief;
he incontinently wished the keeper of the privy seal to the d - -l; he
insisted there was no use in the practice, unless one threw all aback,
and went starn foremost into society, a rudeness at which human natur'
revolted; he knew a man in Stunin'tun who had five names, and he should
like to know what they would do with him, if this practice should
come into fashion there; he had no objection to a little paint, but no
red-hot knitting-needle should make acquaintance with his flesh, so long
as he walked his quarter-deck."

The keeper of the seals listened to this remonstrance with singular
patience and decorum; a forbearance that was probably owing to his not
understanding a word that had been said. But there is a language that
is universal, and it is not less easy to comprehend when a man is in
a passion, than it is to comprehend any other irritated animal. The
officer of the registration department, on this hint, politely inquired
of me, if some part of his official duties were not particularly
disagreeable to No. 1, sea-water color. On my admitting that the captain
was reluctant to be branded, he merely shrugged his shoulders, and
observed that the exactions of the public were seldom agreeable, but
that duty was duty, that the stamp act was peremptory, and not a foot of
ours could touch Leaphigh until we were all checked off in this manner,
in exact conformity with the registration. I was much puzzled what to
do, by this indomitable purpose to perform his duty in the officer;
for, to own the truth, my own cuticle had quite as much aversion to the
operation, as of Captain Poke himself. It was not the principle so
much as the novelty of its application which distressed me; for I had
travelled too much not to know that a stranger rarely enters a civilized
country without being more or less skinned, the merest savages only
permitting him to pass unscathed. It suddenly came to my recollection
that the monikins had left all the remains of their particular stores
on board, consisting of an ample supply of delicious nuts. Sending for
a bag of the best of them, I ordered it to be put into the register's
boat, informing him at the same time, that I was conscious they were
quite unworthy of him, but that I hoped, such as they were, he would
allow me to make an offering of them to his wife. This attention was
properly felt and received; and a few minutes afterwards, a certificate
in the following words was put into my hands, viz.:

"Leaphigh, season of promise, day of performance: Whereas, certain
persons of the human species have lately presented themselves to be
enregistered, according to the statute 'for the promotion of order and
classification, and for the collection of contributions'; and whereas,
these persons are yet in the second class of the animal probation,
and are more subject to bodily impressions than the higher, or monikin
species: Now, know all monikins, etc., that they are stamped in paint,
and that only by their numbers; each class among them being easily to be
distinguished from the others, by outward and indelible proofs.

"Signed,

"No. 8,020 office-color."

I was told that all we had to do now was to mark ourselves with paint
or tar, as we might choose, the latter being recommended for the crew;
taking no further trouble than to number ourselves; and when we went
ashore, if any of the gens-d'armes inquired why we had not the legal
impression on our persons, which quite possibly would be the case, as
the law was absolute in its requisitions, all we had to do was to show
the certificate; but if the certificate was not sufficient, we were men
of the world, and understood the nature of things so well, that we did
not require to be taught so simple a proposition in philosophy, as that
which says, "like causes produce like effects"; and he presumed I could
not have so far overrated his merits, as to have sent the whole of my
nuts into his boat. I avow that I was not very sorry to hear the officer
throw out these hints, for they convinced me that my journey through
Leaphigh would be accompanied with less embarrassment than I had
anticipated, since I now plainly perceived that monikins act on
principles that are not very essentially different from those of the
human race in general.

The complaisant register and the keeper of the privy seal took their
departure together, when we forthwith proceeded to number ourselves in
compliance with his advice. As the principle was already settled, we had
no difficulty with its application, Noah, Bob, myself, and the largest
of the seamen being all Nos. 1, and the rest ranking in order. By this
time it was night. The guard-boats began to appear on the water, and we
deferred disembarking until morning.

All hands were early afoot. It had been arranged that Captain Poke and
myself, attended by Bob, as a domestic, were to land, in order to make a
journey through the island, while the Walrus was to be left in charge of
the mates and the crew; the latter having permission to go ashore, from
time to time, as is the practice with all seamen in port. There was a
great deal of preliminary scrubbing and shaving, before the whole party
could appear on deck, properly attired for the occasion. Mr. Poke wore
a thin dress of linen, admirably designed to make him look like a
sea-lion; a conceit that he said was not only agreeable to his feelings
and habits, but which had a cool and pleasant character that was
altogether suited to a steam-climate. For my own part, I agreed with the
worthy sealer, seeing but little difference between his going in this
garb, and his going quite naked. My dress was made, on a design of
my own, after the social-stake system; or, in other words, it was so
arranged as to take an interest in half of the animals of Exeter Change,
to which MENAGERIE the artist by whom it had been painted was sent
expressly, in order to consult nature. Bob wore the effigy, as his
master called it, of a turnspit.

The monikins were by far too polished to crowd about us when we landed,
with an impertinent and troublesome curiosity. So far from this, we were
permitted to approach the capital itself without let or hindrance. As it
is less my intention to describe physical things than to dwell upon the
philosophy and the other moral aspects of the Leaphigh world, little
more will be said of their houses, domestic economy, and other
improvements in the arts, than may be gathered incidentally, as the
narrative shall proceed. Let it suffice to say on these heads, that the
Leaphigh monikins, like men, consult, or think they consult - which,
so long as they know no better, amounts to pretty much the same
thing - their own convenience in all things, the pocket alone excepted;
and that they continue very laudably to do as their fathers did before
them, seldom making changes, unless they may happen to possess the
recommendation of being exotics; when, indeed, they are sometimes
adopted, probably on account of their possessing the merit of having
been proved suitable to another state of things.

Among the first persons we met, on entering the great square of
Aggregation, as the capital of Leaphigh is called when rendered into
English, was my Lord Chatterino. He was gayly promenading with a company
of young nobles, who all seemed to be enjoying their youth, health,
rank, and privileges with infinite gusto. We met this party in a way to
render an escape from mutual recognition impossible. At first I thought,
from his averted eye, that it was the intention of our late shipmate
to consider our knowledge of each other as one of those accidental
acquaintances which, it is known, we all form at watering-places, on
journeys, or in the country, and which it is ill-mannered to press upon
others in town; or, as Captain Poke afterwards expressed it, like the
intimacy between an Englishman and a Yankee, that has been formed in the
house of the latter, on better wine than is met with anywhere else, and
which was never yet known to withstand the influence of a British fog.
"Why, Sir John," the sealer added, "I once tuck (he meant to say TOOK,
not TUCKED) a countryman of yours under my wing, at Stunin'tun, during
the last war. He was a prisoner, as we make prisoners; that is, he
went and did pretty much as he pleased; and the fellow had the best of
everything - molasses that a spoon would stand up in, pork that would do
to slush down a topmast, and New England rum, that a king might set down
to, but could not get up from - well, what was the end on't? Why, as sure
as we are among these monkeys, the fellow BOOKED me. Had I BOOKED but
the half of what he guzzled, the amount, I do believe, would have taken
the transaction out of any justice's court in the state. He said my
molasses was meagre, the pork lean, and the liquor infernal. There
were truth and gratitude for you! He gave the whul account, too, as a
specimen of what he called American living!"

Hereupon I reminded my companion, that an Englishman did not like to
receive even favors on compulsion; that when he meets a stranger in his
own country, and is master of his own actions, no man understands better
what true hospitality is, as I hoped one day to show him, at Householder
Hall; as to his first remark, he ought to remember that an Englishman
considered America as no more than the country, and that it would be
ill-mannered to press an acquaintance made there.

Noah, like most other men, was very reasonable on all subjects that did
not interfere with his prejudices or his opinions; and he very readily
admitted the general justice of my reply.

"It's pretty much as you say, Sir John," he continued; "in England you
may press men, but it won't do to press hospitality. Get a volunteer in
this way, and he is as good a fellow as heart can wish. I shouldn't have
cared so much about the chap's book, if he had said nothin' ag'in the
rum. Why, Sir John, when the English bombarded Stunin'tun with eighteen
pounders, I proposed to load our old twelve with a gallon out of the
very same cask, for I do think it would have huv' the shot the best part
of a mile!"

- But this digression is leading me from the narrative. My Lord
Chatterino turned his head a little on one side as we were passing,
and I was deliberating whether, under the circumstances, it would be
well-bred to remind him of our old acquaintance, when the question was
settled by the decision of Captain Poke, who placed himself in such a
position that it was no easy matter to get round him, through him, or
over him - or who laid himself what he called "athwart hawse."

"Good morning, my lord," said the straightforward seaman, who generally
went at a subject as he went at a seal. "A fine warm day; and the smell
of the land, after so long a passage, is quite agreeable to the nose,
whatever its ups and downs may be to the legs."

The companions of the young peer looked amazed; and some of them,
I thought, notwithstanding gravity and earnestness are rather
characteristic of the monikin physiognomy, betrayed a slight disposition
to laugh. Not so with my Lord Chatterino himself.

He examined us a moment through a glass, and then seemed suddenly, and
on the whole, agreeably struck at seeing us.

"How, Goldencalf!" he cried in surprise, "you in Leaphigh! This is
indeed an unexpected satisfaction; for it will now be in my power
to prove some of the facts that I am telling my friends, by actual
observation. Here are two of the humans, gents, of whom I was but this
moment giving you some account - "

Observing a disposition to merriment in his associates, he continued,
looking exceedingly grave: -

"Restrain yourselves, gentlemen, I pray you. These are very worthy
people, I do assure you, in their own way, and are not at all to be
ridiculed. I scarcely know, even in our own marine, a better or a
bolder navigator than this honest seaman; and as for the one in the
parti-colored skin, I will take upon myself to say, that he is really a
person of some consideration in his own little circle. He is, I believe,
a member of par - par - par - am I right, Sir John? - a member of - "

"Parliament, my lord - an M.P."

"Ay - I thought I had it - an M.P., or a member of Parliament, in his own
country, which, I dare say now, is some such thing among his people, as
a public proclaimer of those laws which come from his majesty's eldest
first cousin of the masculine gender, may be among us. Some such
thing - eh - now - eh - is it not, Sir John?"

"I dare say it is, my lord."

"All very true, Chatterino," put in one of the young monikins, with a
very long, elaborated tail, which he carried nearly perpendicular - "but
what would be even a lawmaker - to say nothing of law-BREAKERS like
ourselves - among men! You should remember, my dear fellow, that a mere
title, or a profession, is not the criterion of true greatness; but that
the prodigy of a village may be a very common monikin in town."

"Poh-poh" - interrupted Lord Chatterino, "thou art ever for refining,
Hightail - Sir John Goldencalf is a very respectable person in the
island of - a - a - a - what do you call that said island of yours,
Goldencalf? - a - a - "

"Great Britain, my lord."

"Ay, Great Breeches sure enough; yet, he is a respectable person - I can
take it upon myself to say, with confidence, a very respectable person
in Great Breeches. I dare say he owns no small portion of the island
himself. How much, now, Sir John, if the truth were told?"

"Only the estate and village of Householder, my lord, with a few
scattered manors here and there."



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