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monikin assembly. But the facts are notoriously
otherwise. The document is drawn up in a com
mon vehicle of thought among scholars, and I
gladly seize the opportunity to add, that I do not
remember to have seen a better specimen of mo
dern latinity."

" It is undeniable, Sir John," returned Lord
Chatterino, waving his tail in acknowledgment of
the compliment, "that the protocol itself, is in a
language that has now become common property;
but the mere medium of thought, on such occa
sions, is of no great moment, provided it is neu
tral as respects the contracting parties; moreover,
in this particular case, article llth of the protocol
contains a stipulation that no legal consequences



THE MONIKIKS. 151

whatever are to follow the use of the Latin lan
guage; a stipulation that leaves the contracting par
ties in possession of their original rights. Now,
as the lecture is to be a monikin lecture, given
by a monikin philosopher, and on monikin grounds,
I humbly urge that it is proper the interview should
generally be conducted on monikin principles."

" If by monikin grounds, is meant monikin
ground, (which I have a right to assume, since
the greater necessarily includes the less,) I beg
leave to remind your Lordship, that the parties
are, at this moment, in a neutral country, and
that, if either of them can set up a claim of terri
torial jurisdiction, or the rights of the flag, these
claims must be admitted to be human, since the
locataire of this apartment is a man, in control of
the locus in quo, and pro hac vice, the suzerain."

" Your ingenuity has greatly exceeded my con
struction, Sir John, and I beg leave to amend my
plea. All I mean is, that the leading consideration
in this interview, is a monikin interest that we
are met to propound, explain, digest, animadvert
on, and embellish a monikin theme that the
accessory must be secondary to the principal
that the lesser must merge, not in your sense, but
in my sense, in the greater and, by consequence,
that "

"You will accord me your pardon, my dear
Lord, but I hold "

" Nay, my good Sir John, I trust to your intel
ligence to be excused if I say "

" One word, my Lord Chatterino, I pray you,
:n order that-. "

" A thousand, very cheerfully, Sir John, but "

"My Lord Chatterino !"

"Sir John Goldencalf!"



162 THE NONIKI5S.

Hereupon we both began talking at the same
time, the noble young monikin gradually nar
rowing down the direction of his observations to
the single person of Mrs. Vigilance Lynx, who, )
afterwards had occasion to know, was an excel
lent listener ; and I, in my turn, after wandering
from eye to eye, settled down into a sort of ora
tion that was especially addressed to the under
standing of Captain Noah Poke. My auditor
contrived to get one ear entirely clear of the
bison's skin, and nodded approbation of what fell
from me, with a proper degree of human and
clannish spirit. We might possibly have harangued
in this desultory manner, to the present time, had
not the amiable Chatterissa advanced, and, with
the tact and delicacy which distinguish her sex,
by placing her pretty palte on the mouth of the
young nobleman, she effectually checked his volu
bility. When a horse is running away, he usually
comes to a dead stop, after driving through lanes,
and gates, and turnpikes, the moment he finds
himself master of his own movements, in an open
field. Thus, in my own case, no sooner did I find
myself in sole possession of the argument, than I
brought it to a close. Dr. Reasono improved the
pause, to introduce a proposition that, the experi
ment already made by myself and Lord Chatterino
being evidently a failure, he and Mr. Poke should
retire and make an effort to agree upon an en
tirely new programme of the proceedings. This
happy thought suddenly restored peace; and, while
the two negotiators were absent, I improved the
opportunity to become better acquainted with the
lovely Chatterissa and her female Mentor. Lord
Chatterino, who possessed all the graces of diplo
macy, who could turn from a hot and angry dis
cussion, on the instant, to the most bland and win-



THE MONIKINS. 153

ning courtesy, was foremost in promoting my
wishes, inducing his charming mistress to throw
aside the reserve of a short acquaintance, and to
enter, at once, into a free and friendly discourse.
Some time elapsed before the plenipotentiaries
returned ; for it appears that, owing to a constitu
tional peculiarity, or, as he subsequently explained
it himself, a ' Stunin'tun principle,' Captain Poke
conceived he was bound, in a bargain, to dispute
every proposition which came from the other party.
This difficulty would probably have proved insu
perable, had not Dr. Reasono luckily bethought
him of a frank and liberal proposal to leave every
other article, without reserve, to the sole dictation
of his colleague, reserving to himself the same
privilege for all the rest. Noah, after being well
assured that the philosopher was no lawyer, as
sented ; and the affair, once begun in this spirit
of concession, was soon brought to a close. And
here I would recommend this happy expedient to
all negotiators of knotty and embarrassing treaties,
since it enables each party to gain his point, and
probably leaves as few openings for subsequent
disputes, as any other mode that has yet been
adopted. The new instrument ran as follows, it
having been written, in duplicate, in English and in
Monikin. It will be seen that the pertinacity of
one of the negotiators gave it very much the cha
racter of a capitulation.

PROTOCOL of an interview, &c. &c. &c.

The contracting parties agree as follows, viz.

ARTICLE 1. There shall be an interview.

ART. 2. Agreed; provided all the parties can
come and go at pleasure.

ART. 3. The said interview shall be conducted,
generally, on philosophical and liberal principles.



154 THE MOITIKINS.

ART. 4. Agreed; provided tobacco may be usea
at discretion.

ART. 5. That either party shall have the privi
lege of propounding questions, and either party
the privilege of answering them.

ART. 6. Agreed ; provided no one need listen,
or no one talk, unless so disposed.

ART. 7. The attire of all present shall be con
formable to the abstract rules of propriety and
decorum.

ART. 8. Agreed ; provided the bison-skins may
be reefed, from time to time, according to the
state of the weather.

ART. 9. The provisions of this protocol shall be
rigidly respected.

ART. 10. Agreed; provided no advantage be
taken by lawyers.

Lord Chatterino and myself pounced upon the
respective documents like two hawks, eagerly
looking for flaws, or the means of maintaining the
opinions we had before advanced, and which we
had both shown so much cleverness in supporting.

" Why, my Lord, there is no provision for the
appearance of any Monikins at all at this inter
view !"

" The generality of the terms leaves it to be
inferred that all may come and go who may be so
disposed."

" Your pardon, my Lord ; article 8 contains a
direct allusion to bison-skins in the plural, and
under circumstances from which it follows, by a
just deduction, that it was contemplated that more
than one wearer of the said skins should be present
at the said interview."

" Perfectly just, Sir John ; but you will suffer
me to observe that by article 1, it is conditioned



THE MOMKINS. 155

that there shall be an interview; and by article 3,
it is furthermore agreed that the said interview
shall be conducted 'on philosophical and liberal
principles ;' now, it need scarcely be urged, good
Sir John, that it would be the extreme of illiberality
to deny to one party any privilege that was pos
sessed by the other."

" Perfectly just, my Lord, were this an affair
of mere courtesy ; but legal constructions must be
made on legal principles, or else, as jurists and
diplomatists, we are all afloat on the illimitable
ocean of conjecture."

" Ad yet article 10 expressly stipulates that
*no advantage shall be taken by lawyers.' By
considering articles 3, and 10, profoundly and in
conjunction, we learn that it was the intention of
the negotiators to spread the mantle of liberality,
apart from all the subtilties and devices of mere
legal practitioners, over the whole proceedings.
Permit me, in corroboration of what is now urged,
to appeal to the voices of those who framed the
very conditions about which we are now arguing.
Did you, sir," continued my Lord Chatterino,
turning to Captain Poke, with emphasis and dig
nity ; " did you, sir, when you drew up this cele
brated article 10 did you deem that you were
publishing authority of which the lawyers could
take advantage ?"

A deep and very sonorous " No," was the ener
getic reply of Mr. Poke.

My Lord Chatterino, then turning, with equal
grace, to the Doctor, first diplomatically waving
his tail three times, continued :

" And you, sir, in drawing up article 3 did you
conceive that you were supporting and promul
gating illiberal principles ?"

The question was met by a prompt negative



156 THE MONIKINS.

when the young noble paused, and looked at niQ
like one who had completely triumphed.

"Perfectly eloquent, completely convincing, irre
futably argumentative, and unanswerably just, my
Lord," I put in ; " but I must be permitted to hint
that the validity of all laws is derived from the
enactment : now the enactment, or, in the case of
a treaty, the virtue of the stipulation, is not derived
from the intention of the party who may happen
to draw up a law or a clause, but from the assent
of the legal deputies. In the present instance, there
are two negotiators, and I now ask permission to
address a few questions to them, reversing the
order of your own interrogatories ; and the result
may possibly furnish a clue to the quo animo, in a
new light." Addressing the philosopher, I conti
nued " Did you, sir, in assenting to article 10,
imagine that you were defeating justice, counte
nancing oppression, and succouring might to the
injury of right?"

The answer was a solemn, and, I do not doubt,
a very conscientious, " No."

"And you, sir," turning to Captain Poke, "did
you, in assenting to article 3, in the least conceive
that, by any possibility, the foes of humanity could
torture your approbation into the means of deter
mining that the bison-skin wearers were not to be
upon a perfect footing with the best Monikins of
the land ?"

" Blast me, if I did !"

" But, Sir John Goldencalf, the Socratic methoe
of reasoning "

" Was first resorted to by yourself, my Lord '

" Nay, good Sir '

" Permit me, my dear Lord"

" Sir John "

" My Lord "



THE MONIKINS. 157

Hereupon the gentle Chatterissa again advanced,
and by another timely interposition of her graceful
tact, she succeeded in preventing the reply. The
parallel of the runaway horse was acted over,
and I came to another stand-still. Lord Chat-
terino now gallantly proposed that the whole affair
should be referred, with full powers, to the ladies.
I could not refuse; and the plenipotentiaries retired,
under a growling accompaniment of Captain Poke,
who pretty plainly declared that women caused
more quarrels than all the rest of the world, and,
from the little he had seen, he expected it would
turn out the same with monikinas.

The female sex certainly possess a facility of
composition that is denied our portion of the crea
tion. In an incredibly short time, the referees
returned with the following programme.

PROTOCOL of an interview between, &c. &c.

The contracting parties agree as follows, viz.

ARTICLE 1. There shall be an amicable, logical,
philosophical, ethical, liberal, general, and contro
versial interview.

ART. 2. The interview shall be amicable

ART. 3. The interview shall be general.

ART. 4. The interview shall be logical.

ART. 5. The interview shall be ethical.

ART. 6. The interview shall be philosophical.

ART. 7. The interview shall be liberal.

ART. 8. The interview shall be controversial.

ART. 9. The interview shall be controversial,
liberal, philosophical, ethical, logical, general, and
amicable.

ART. 10. The interview shall be as particularly
agreed upon.

14



158 THE MOKIKIirS.

The cat does not leap upon the mouse with more
avidity than Lord Chatterino and myself pounced
upon the third protocol, seeking new grounds for
the argument that each was resolved on.

"Augusle ! cher Auguste /" exclaimed the lovely
Chatterissa, in the prettiest Parisian accent I
thought I had ever heard " Pour moi !"

"A moi! Monseigneur," I put in, flourishing my
copy of the protocol I was checked in the midst
of this controversial ardor, by a tug at the bison-
skin ; when, casting a look behind me, I saw Cap
tain Poke winking and making other signs that he
wished to say a word in a corner.

** I think, Sir John," observed the worthy sealer,
"if we ever mean to let this bargain come to a catas
trophe, it might as well be done now. The females
have been cunning, but the deuce is in it if we
can't weather upon two women before the matter
is well over. In Stunin'tun, when it is thought
best to accommodate proposals, why we object
and raise a breeze in the beginning, but towards
the end we kinder soften and mollify, or else trade
would come to a stand. The hardest gale must
blow its pipe out. Trust to me to floor the best
argument the best monkey of them all can agi
tate !"

" This matter is getting serious, Noah, and I am
filled with an esprit, de corps. Do you not begin
yourself to feel numan ?"

"Kinder; but more bisonish than any thing
else. Let them go on, Sir John ; and, when the
time comes, we will take them aback, or set me
down as a pettifogger."

The Captain winked knowingly ; and I began to
see that there was some sense in his opinion. On
rejoining our friends, or allies, I scarce know
which to call them, I found that the amiable Chat-



THE MOMKIJTS. 159

terissa had equally calmed the diplomatic ardor of
her lover, again ; and we now met on the best pos
sible terms. The protocol was accepted by accla
mation; and preparations were instantly com
menced for the lecture of Dr. Reasono.



CHAPTER XI.

A philosophy that is bottomed on something substantial
Some reasons plainly presented, and cavilling objections
put to flight, by a charge of logical bayonets.

DR. REASONO was quite as reasonable, in the per
sonal embellishments of his lyceum, as any public
lecturer I remember to have seen, who was requir
ed to execute his functions in the presence of ladies.
If I say that his coat had been brushed, his tail
newly curled, and that his air was a little more than
usually " solemnized," as Captain Poke described
it in a decent whisper, I believe all will be said
that is either necessary or true. He placed him
self behind a footstool, which served as a table,
smoothed its covering a little with his paws, and
at once proceeded to business. It may be well to
add that he lectured without notes, and, as the
subject did not immediately call for experiments,
without any apparatus.

Waving his tail towards the different parts of
the room in which his audience were seated, th
philosopher commenced.

"As the present occasion, my hearers," he said,
* is one of those accidental calls upon science, to
which all belonging to the academies are liable,
and does not demand more than the heads of our
thesis to be explained, I shall not dig into the roots



160 THE MOJTIKINS.

of the subject, but limit myself to such geneial
remarks as may serve to furnish the outlines of our
philosophy, natural, moral and political "

" How, sir," I cried, " have you a political aa
well as a moral philosophy 1"

" Beyond a question ; and a very useful philoso
phy it is. No interests require more philosophy
than those connected with politics. To resume
our philosophy, natural, moral and political, reserv
ing most of the propositions, demonstrations, and
corollaries, for greater leisure, and a more ad
vanced state of information in the class. Pre
scribing to myself these salutary limits, therefore, I
shall begin only with Nature.

" Nature is a term that we use to express the
pervading and governing principle of created
things. It is known both as a generic and a specific
term, signifying in the former character the ele
ments and combinations of omnipotence, as applied
to matter in general, and in the latter, its particu
lar subdivisions, in connexion with matter in its
infinite varieties. It is moreover subdivided into its
physical and moral attributes, which admit also
of the two grand distinctions just named. Thus,
when we say Nature, in the abstract, meaning
physically, we would be understood as alluding to
those general, uniform, absolute, consistent, and
beautiful laws, which control and render harmo
nious, as a great whole, the entire action, affini
ties, and destinies of the universe ; and when we
say Nature in the speciality, we would be under
stood to speak of the nature of a rock, of a tree,
of air, fire, water, and land. Again; in alluding
to a moral Nature in the abstract, we mean sin,
and its weaknesses, its attractions, its deformities;
in a word, its totality; while, on the other hand,
when we use the term, in this sense, under the



THE MONIKINS. 161

imits of a speciality, we confine its signification
to the particular shades of natural qualities that
mark the precise object named. Let us illustrate
our positions by a few brief examples.

" When we say ' O Nature ! how art thou glo
rious, sublime, instructive !' we mean that her
laws emanate from a power of infinite intelligence
and perfection; and when we say 'O Nature!
how art thou frail, vain and insufficient!' we mean
that she is, after all, but a secondary quality, infe
rior to that which brought her into existence, for
definite, limited, and, doubtless, useful purposes.
In these examples, we treat the principle in the
abstract.

" The examples of nature in the speciality will
be more familiar, and, although in no degree more
true, will be better understood by the generality
of my auditors. Especial nature, in the physical
signification, is apparent to the senses, and is
betrayed in the outward forms of things, through
their force, magnitude, substance, and proportions
and, in its more mysterious properties, to examina
tion, by their laws, harmony, and action. Espe
cial moral nature is denoted in the different pro
pensities, capacities and conduct of the different
classes of all moral beings. In this latter sense
we have monikin nature, dog nature, horse nature,
hog nature, human nature "

" Permit me, Dr. Reasono," I interrupted, " to
inquire if, by this classification, you intend to con
vey more than may be understood by the accidental
arrangement of your examples 1"

" Purely the latter, I do assure you, Sir John."

" And do you admit the great distinctions of
animal and vegetable natures?"

" Our academies are divided on this point. One
school contends that all living nature is to be en>
14*



162 THE MONIKJNS.

braced in a great comprehensive genus, while
another admits of the distinctions you nave named.
I am of the latter opinion, inclining to the belief
that Nature herself has drawn the line between
the two classes, by bestowing on one the double
gift of the moral and physical nature, and by with
holding the former from the other. The existence
of the moral nature is denoted by the presence of
the will. The academy of Leaphigh has made an
elaborate classification of all the known animals,
of which the sponge is at the bottom of the list,
and the monikin at the top."

" Sponges are commonly uppermost," growled
Noah.

" Sir," said I, with a disagreeable rising at the
throat, " am I to understand that your savans
account man an animal in a middle state between
a sponge and a monkey?"

" Really, Sir John, this warmth is quite unsuited
to philosophical discussion if you continue to
indulge in it, I shall find myself compelled to
postpone the lecture."

At this rebuke I made a successful effort to
restrain myself, although my esprit de corps nearly
choked me. Intimating, as well as I could, a
change of purpose, Dr. Reasono, who had stood
suspended over his table with an air of doubt,
waved his tail, and proceeded :

" Sponges, oysters, crabs, sturgeons, clams, toads,
snakes, lizards, skunks, opossums, ant-eaters, ba
boons, negroes, wood-chucks, lions, esquimaux,
sloths, hogs, hottentots, ourang-outangs, men and
monikins are, beyond a question, all animals. The
only disputed point among us is, whether they are
all of the same genus, forming varieties or species,
or whether they are to be divided into the three
great families of the improvables, the unimprava*



THE MOM KINS. 163

bks, and the retrogressives. They who maintain
that we form but one great family, reason by cer
tain conspicuous analogies, that serve as so many
links to unite the great chain of the animal world.
Taking man as a centre, for instance, they show
that this creature possesses, in common with every
other creature, some observable property. Thus,
man is, in one particular, like a sponge; in another,
he is like an oyster; a hog is like a man; the skunk
has one peculiarity of a man ; the ourang-outang
another ; the sloth another "

" King !"

" And so on, to the end of the chapter. This
school of philosophers, while it has been very
ingeniously supported, is not, however, the one
most in favor, just at this moment, in the academy
of Leaphigh "

" Just at this moment, Doctor !"

" Certainly, sir. Do you not know that truths,
physical as well as moral, undergo their revolu
tions, the same as all created nature? The acade
my has paid great attention to this subject ; and
it issues annually an almanack, in which the dif
ferent phases, the revolutions, the periods, the
eclipses, whether partial or total, the distances
from the centre of light, the apogee and perigee of
all the more prominent truths, are calculated, with
singular accuracy; and by the aid of which the
cautious are enabled to keep themselves, as near
as possible, within the bounds of reason. We
deem this effort of the monikin mind as the sub-
limest of all its inventions, and as furnishing the
strongest known evidence of its near approach to
the consummation of our earthly destiny. This
is not the place to dwell on that particular point
of our philosophy, however; and, for the present,
we will postpone the subject."



164 THE MOIUKIKS..

"Yet you will permit me, Dr. Reasono, in virtue
of clause 1, article 5, protocol No. 1, (which pro
tocol, if not absolutely adopted, must be supposed
to contain the spirit of that which was,) to inquire
whether the calculations of the revolutions of truth,
do not lead to dangerous moral extravagancies,
ruinous speculations in ideas, and serve to unsettle
society ?"

The philosopher withdrew a moment with my
Lord Chatterino, to consult whether it would be
prudent to admit of the validity of protocol No. 1,
even in this indirect manner ; whereupon it was de
cided between them, that, as such admission would
lay open all the vexatious questions that had just
been so happily disposed of, clause 1 of article 5
having a direct connexion with clause 2 ; clauses
1 and 2 forming the whole article ; and the said
article 5, in its entirety, forming an integral por
tion of the whole instrument ; and the doctrine of
constructions enjoining that instruments are to be
construed, like wills, by their general, and not by
their especial, tendencies, it would be dangerous
to the objects of the interview to allow the appli
cation to be granted. But, reserving a protest
against the concession being interpreted into a
precedent, it might be well to concede that, as an
act of courtesy, which was denied as a right.
Hereupon, Dr. Reasono informed me that these
calculations of the revolutions of truth did lead to
certain moral extravagancies, and in many in
stances to ruinous speculations in ideas ; that the
academy of Leaphigh, and so far as his informa
tion extended, the academy of every other country,
had found the subject of truth, more particularly
moral truth, the one of all others the most difficult
to manage, the most likely to be abused, and the
most dangerous to promulgate. I was moreover



THE MONIKINS. 165

promised, at a future day, some illustrations of
this branch of the subject.

"To pursue the more regular thread of my lec
ture," continued Dr. Reasono, when he had po
litely made this little digression, " we now divide
these portions of the created world into animated
and vegetable nature ; the former is again divided



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