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[F1] "The Sanguine Poetaster," Spirit of the Times, March 22, 1842

The Sanguine Poetaster.


I. Miss Emeline W—.

The young lady cast her eye around the apartment. There were rich ottomans, the table with its gorgeous cover upon which stood an astral lamp, throwing its softened light around the apartment.—There was the comfortable fire burning in the grate; and there was the floor covered by the rich Brussels carpet. Miss Emeline W—, the beautiful and the fashionable Miss Emeline W— cast her eye around the splendidly furnished room and yet found nothing to dispel her ennui.

"How dull!" she exclaimed in a voice as sweet as that of a humming bird would be, provided it could articulate the sentence—"How dull! Every body out—nobody dropping in!—O! my!" Emeline sighed.

She drew the rich curtains that depended from the lofty window, and looked out upon the fashionable Chestnut street, where crowds of plumed belles, and corseted beaus were strolling along, while the buff coated watchmen were very picturesquely lighting up the lamps. As Miss Emeline W. gazed upon the scene, she sincerely wished that a carriage or so, would break down in the street merely to give interest to the scene. She then breathed an ejaculation in behalf of the doctor, by whose commands it was that she remained closeted in the house.

"A paltry cold! And I am to be cooped up here!—For my part, I never could see what these Doctors were good for."

As she uttered this philosophical sentiment, she caught sight of a fashionable young gentleman, standing upon the steps of her father's mansion, and pulling the bell with an earnestness that was really pathetic.

No sooner did she behold this young gentleman, than Miss Emeline W.—the fashionable and the fair-uttered an exclamation descriptive of that state of mind commonly called "Contempt," the exclamation being nothing less than "O! the fright!" She then threw herself upon the sofa, and composed her form into an attitude, which was certainly very pretty.

Now I might picture her face and figure, but as all the terms commonly used for this purpose, are stereotyped, I have no other method than that used by a glazier to describe a pane of glass:—"It is eight by ten;" so of the young lady, she was five feet by one foot six and a half inches across the shoulder, &c., &c. I think I'll omit the description all together merely stating that in her effort to throw herself into a position "to kill," a tress of the loveliest, dark brown hair escaped from her head dress and fell in glossy richness down upon her fair and snow-white shoulder.

The door opened.

"Miss Amheline," exclaimed a servant, whose brogue, would not by any means be taken for an enunciation of Greek, Latin, or English; "Miss Amheline, there's a gentleman awaiting to see yez—it's Maister Henry Bread Crust."


And at that instant there stood in the door way, a young gentleman, slim, slender, and beneath the middle size. A short classical cloak thrown over his shoulders in the most interesting manner, revealed a tight fitting frock coat of black cloth, beneath which was a buckskin colored waistcoat, with bright metal buttons, around his neck was a cravat of indigo blue, extending over his chest and bulging from the collar of the waistcoat. It bore in its centre a breast pin large enough to contain the picture of the battle of Bunker's Hill. The pantaloons of the gentleman presented as strong a contrast as did the other parts of his attire. They were of bright yellow, made close to the skin, striped somewhat after the manner of the rattle snake's back, and strapped around fashionably made boots.

The face of the gentleman would have thrown Cruikshank into fits, and killed Hlogarth with joy.

From beneath his black velvet cap, there strayed over his ears and down each cheek, starved tangled masses of red hair; and could a painter have extracted the essence of these locks it would have put his vermillion to the blush.

His formal white eyebrows arched over, dull blue eyes with white eye-lashes. These orbs were somewhat like the eyes of a pickled mackerel. His nose was straight enough but it was as square as that of one of those ingenious pieces of statuary usually displayed before a tobacconist's shop. His lips were thin, his chin large and prominent, his whole countenance somewhat long, and from both of his ears, along his cheek bone to the point of his chin, there ran a starved red whisker that reminded you of the Desert of Arabia. His skin was light and sanguine, and it shone like a well-greased hob-nailed boot.


"Why Miss Em'line, you certainly do look very enchanting," exclaimed Mr. Crust, in a voice exactly like that of a stout, masculine woman—"How d'ye do."—He seated himself beside her on the sofa. And after the compliments of the evening were exchanged,—he asked—

"Awh, Miss Em'line did yah see my last new song? Hey? I flattaw meself it's not a whit infere-ah to the 'Bwave Old Oak' of my intimate friend Generawl Morris—here it is"—He drew a roll of music from under his cloak—"I call it the CWAB TWEE OLD AND GWAY-read the first stanza."

Miss Emeline W— began in her soft and musical voice—

'The crab tree old and gray

What cares it for the wind's wild sway?—

It shakes its leaves the live long day,

And thus to man it seems to say—

Oh! the crab-tree old and grey!

Ah! The crab-tree old and grey!

When I was young the children used to play

Under my limbs now old and gray—

Crab-apples gather all the day

And to their mothers bear 'em all away—

Oh! the crab-tree old and grey!

Ah! The crab-tree old and grey!

"That,"—interrupted Mr. Crust, "That is what I call—fine."

"O! very fine!"—exclaimed Miss Emeline, with a curious movement of her features—"very fine,—especially those lines, that speak of the little children gathering crab-apples,—there is true pathos in that—but Mr. Crust," she continued with an innocent look—"I wonder if 'their mothers' made preserves of the crab-apples!"

"Why really that didn't strike me!—capital idea! Let me see—I can work it up yet."—He crossed one leg over another, and resting his elbow on his knee, he spread out his hand to support his face, and casting his eyes up to the ceiling, he looked very much like a poodle-dog inspecting a spider-web.

"I have it, I have it!" he suddenly exclaimed. "Here it is—"

When winter comes with balls so gay,

And dancers tripping on their lightsome way,

Then shall the kind mamma come forth and say,

"My friends here nice preserves—take some I pray;

They're from the crab-tree, old and grey.

Oh! the Crab tree! Old and grey!"

It was very strange that Miss Emeline W—, ere this beautiful extract was half-finished, sprang suddenly from the sofa, and began to poke the fire with an energy that was truly commendable.

(To be continued)

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[F2] "The Sanguine Poetaster. A Sketch by Eric Iterbil," Spirit of the Times, March 23, 1842

The Sanguine Poetaster.

A Sketch by Eric Iterbil.


"There's a divine afflatus—there. Why, Miss Emeline, what makes you so red in the face?—hey?"

"O! nothing particular—by-the-bye, Mr. Crust, when will you bring my Album back? You promised to write me a piece of poetry some three months ago."

"I am waiting faw the inspiwation—I want a subject;" and here as if seized by some bright idea, he approached the table and taking something from a work-basket, he again spoke.

"I want a subject. Something to concentwate my ideeas—in short, I want such an inspirer as yourself—or this awburn ringlet—(Mr. Crust called ladies' hair, whatever color it might be, auburn—"it was so demd poetical!")—in short, fair Em'line, this auburn ringlet is the very thing!"

He took the scissors that he held in his hand, and clipt, the rich brown tress close to the head. The deed was done. Miss Emeline W— looked around. Henry Bread Crust, Esq., Poet and Songster was gone.

Miss Emeline W- looked in the glass as if to assure herself of the awful reality.

"The impertinent puppy!" she at last exclaimed, "now I's to be penned up in the house for three months! I can never go out again—never! My prettiest tress gone—entirely clipt off! Well! And a real curl too! If it had been artificial I would not have cared—but a real curl!"

IV. The Album.

It was near noon on the ensuing day, when Miss Emeline W., attired in the prettiest dishabille in the world, was seated in the drawing room. The Irish servant entered. He held a richly decorated album.

"Hay, brought it. The gentleman wid the fiery comb. He said he'd wait for a replay."

Miss Emeline hurriedly opened the album. It was entirely new, gilt edged, and filled with the costliest engravings. Emeline opened the album upon the Dedicatory leaf; and there in a most villanous scrawl was written the following:—



Respectfully Dedicated to the fair

Miss Emeline W.,



This capital "heading" was followed by a number of namby pamby rhymes, written in the peculiar style of Mr. Henry Bread Crust. Indeed, it was hard to tell them from a New Year's Address, which he had penned for a penny paper. Henry had a certain number of original ideas, which he employed in every kind of rhyming, whether stanzas, musings, thoughts, or inklings.

As Miss W. read, her lip curled and her eye flashed.

"What impudence!" she exclaimed to herself, "one of my best curls cut off—and my Album (Pa gave a hundred dollars for it) disfigured by such stuff as that!"

"Patrick," she continued aloud, "is the person who delivered this waiting below?"

"Aye, is he: it's him; the red haired gintleman."

"Patrick, here's a dollar for you. Now turn him out!"

Patrick makes the best of his way down stairs.—The classical young man waits in the entry.

"Well, well, how did Miss Emeline like it? Eh?"

"Come my buffer," exclaimed the Irishman, "now jist walk out—will ye?"

The emphasis laid upon the last words, was accompanied by a look that said, "If ye don't walk out it's meself that 'ill be making ye."

"What means this—slave!" said Mr. H. B. Crust with an air learned from the Rhetorical Association. "What means this—slave!"

This was said very prettily, but it wouldn't do.

"Is it going out ye are?" inquired Patrick in his peculiar way. "Is it goin' out ye are?"

"Tell Miss W. that I would speak with her," exclaimed Bread Crust with quiet dignity.

"Is it goin' out ye are, I say?"

"You shall repent this insolence—I will inform"—(retreating a step)

"Will ye go out o' that door?"

"Now, sir, this matter has gone far enough. I consider it my duty to—" (retreating another step.)

"Be j—s, but I'll put ye out," cried Patrick as opening the door with one hand, he thrust Mr. Bread Crust into the street with the other, extending his right foot at the same time in a manner that was at once offensive and peculiar.

"Now spile a leddy's picture book again, will ye?"

Patrick closed the door, and as he closed it, Henry Bread Crust, Esq., beheld the face of Miss Emeline W. peering over the bannisters in the background.

"I think I'll not go there again soon," exclaimed the Sanguine Poetaster as he walked away.

Thus ends this slight yet characteristic passage in the life of Henry Bread Crust. I may be tempted to give another of his rare and curious adventures. It concerns the Sanguine Poetaster, and his friend the Bilious Rhymster, and is entitled, "The Duel at Camden, a passage in the lives of Henry Bread Crust and Thomas Done Brown, Esquires."

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[F3] Letter to the Editor, Spirit of the Times, March 28, 1842 (p. 2)

OH TRUMPERY!  OH MOSES!—The following egotistic epistle reached, and amused us yesterday:

Philadelphia, Ninth and Chestnut Street,

(Garret-Room, we suppose.—ED.)

March 27th, 1842.

JOHN S DU SOLLE, Esq.—DEAR SIR:—A very foolish report has got abroad, namely:—That in order to gain notoriety, I have written for you the articles lately appearing in the "Times," in which myself, and my friend Mr. Hirst, so conspicuously figure.  I would have no objections to this, as the articles are very amusing and cleverly written, were it not that the reputation of having contributed to your paper is anything but agreeable to  my feelings.  Be kind enough to contradict the report, and add another obligation to the many conferred on

Your grateful friend,


Mr. English flatters himself egregiously, when he dreams that either he or his friend could be important enough to merit a "conspicuous" piece in our columns!

To oblige Mr. E., we add that he has never contributed to the "Times"—we have invariably refused to publish his communications, even when he has promised to pay for their insertion.

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[F4] "The Bread Crust Papers, Part Second," Spirit of the Times, March 28, 1842


Part Second.


            As the State House bell swung off the hour of one, while the rain pouring down in torrents, was flooding the gutters and dashing along the pavement, a figure of well proportioned dimensions, attired in a short classic cloak and cap, with a wrecked umbrella above its head, came sailing round the corner of —— street, into Chestnut street, and bearing gallantly against the blast, made up the latter street, with a perseverance and desperate courage truly commendable for its very energy.

            Some ten or twenty paces might have been passed, when the figure suddenly wheeled round, and the light of the corporation lamp fell strongly upon a face of peculiarly hard and mahogany cut features, relieved or rather distressed by tangled frowsy masses of stiff bilious hair, which struggled from under the figure's cap, and saturated cloak, the wet poured down in one incessant pour, and glistened beautifully as it poured.

            "By the spirit of Shakespeare, I'd like to have forgot the place!" exclaimed a half gruff, half grating voice, as the figure turned and inspected a door plate—"Here it is, Mrs. H-U-dowble B-S—Missers Hubbs.  Yes, it's the, the location.  I'm not—not toddied, not I.  Ee-ee-cup—I can stand as straight as a lamp post.  Missers Hubbs, boarding house; I see the very spot.  How could I miss it; over a wholesale and retail flour store, too.  Ha-ha-ha—I'll ring."

            Extending a hand that seemed a little nervous in its movements, he pulled the door bell, and again and again he tortured the wires.  Still no signs of life or animation appeared.

            "What a fine subject for the next number of the Amaranth!  Genius kept waiting out in the rain—rain?  pooh!  Lord how it's dashing down the roofs of the houses, sweeping in a young Niagara up—Eee-ee-cup-cup—Chestnut street; by the spirit of Shakspeare! what a torrent!  D—n the bell, do the lazy d—ls think I'm goin' to wait here all night?  By the—Eee-cup—"

            "Wad mought you want, sah?" said an African voice.  The cloaked figure turned, and beheld the shining, well rounded features of an African's head peering thro' the half-opened door.

            "This is Mrs. Hubb's boarding house?"

            "Yes, sah.  Dah can be no doubt of dat fac."

            "Show me to Mr. Henry Bread Crust's room."

            "Wad mought yuh name be, sah?" inquired the negro, with unmoved gravity.

            "My name—you know me.  I've given you many a quarter.  My name is


Jist hurry me to Harry's room.  Quick—ee-ee-cup."

            "I ab no doubt ob yuh nam been done Brown, but I don't rimimber de qua-tar.  Debbil a bit."  The negro made as though he would close the door.

            "Haa-oh-pa-oh-One, and o star light morn"—cried a sleepy watchman passing the lamppost.

            "Here," cried Mr. Brown in utter desperation, "Here is a quarter for you, now show me to his room," he continued pushing himself into the door.  "On consideration I'll not be so mean as to offer you a quarter.  I'll make it a half to-morrow.  Go on—Ee-ee-cup.  By the spirit of Shakspeare"—

            "Bell if dat don't beat me out!"—muttered Jerry, the negro, to himself, as taking up a small taper he proceeded to lead the way up a number of stairs, assuring Mr. Brown, the Rhymester, that Mr. Crust had gone to bed two hours before, and that he had given especial orders not to be disturbed, "or," Continued Jerry, "anyting ob dat."

            "Never mind, Mister Jerry.  But show me up.  Three pairs of stairs past already—good.  Keep a showing me up.  Three pairs and a half—better—Eee-ee-cup.  Four-four pairs—best of all, by the spirit of Shakspeare.  Here we are.  Stand aside, Jerry, and let me play Yankee Doodle on the door."

            This he did with great success for about fifty seconds, when a gruff voice answered, "come in," and trying the door, the Bilious Rhymester did walk in, having first blown out Jerry's light in a playful fit, by way of a practical joke, in return for his kindness.

            As he opened the door, a small thinly furnished apartment was discovered, and in a small uncurtained bed in—not one corner, but in one half of the room, the form of the poet, Mr. Crust, was discovered with the bed clothing thrown half aside, while the light of a small taper on the wash-stand showed that his hair was very red, his eyes very sleepy, and the prominent expression of his features rather distressing in its character.

            "How d'ye do, Harry!  Such a spree!  Lord, I've been up at Harmer's, with a dozen good fellows—fried oysters—champagne—cold slaw—roast duck—such a blow out, and they paid for it all, too!  By the spirit of Shake—"

            "How d-a-a-md annohing," exclaimed the sanguine Poetaster, in a voice half exquisite, and half womanish—"To be disturbed in such a vee-sion!  Ah! to be su-ah!" continued he, restlessly poking among the bed clothes—"Such a dream, a perfect angel of beauty, swimming in golden light, with silvery wings, with a fascinating tracer-y of fawn, flew befaw me couch, and was just about to 'light in these arms when your knock disturbed—d-a-m it.  What's your important be-siness, he Tom?  You sent me a note this evening, saying your aunt was dying?  Is that true?"

            "Not a word of it!" replied Mr. Done Brown, drawing the washstand and a chair to the bedside.

            "Then what in the devil's name are you knocking me up at this hour of the night for?"

            Bread Crust's features grew redder than his hair, as he spoke, and he threw a denuded leg out of the bed, and he clenched his fist as if meditating an attack on the sconce of his friend.

            "Why Crust how red you are in the face," exclaimed Done Brown, as drawing the two chairs, the only sitting furniture that the room contained to the bedside, he seated himself on one of them, and placed his legs on the other, with his face toward the discomposed Crust. "I declare if I didn't know you, I should say you were angry—exceedingly.  There.  Let me pull that washstand closer to the bed.  What a fine light the taper throws around the room, or garret—oh; it's a room, excuse me, I thought it was a garret.  I say, Harry, I've got a treat in store for you—I have."

            "What is it?" asked Crust as his features lighted up with an eager expression—"Anything about the-the mysterious fair—the merino shawl?  Eh, Tom?"

            "Not just yet, Harry.  Wait a bit.  In the mean time I am going to favor you with a mark of my unlimited confidence.  I'm go"—he drew closer to the bed and placed his mouth to Henry's ear, "I'm going to read my Ocean-Shore to you."

            "Well, by g-d, I like that!" shouted Bread Crust in a tone that plainly showed he didn't like it at all. "I like it amazingly.  You first send me a note declaring that the old rich aunt of ours in Germantown is sick; the aunt you expected all that money from; you tell me that you will call on me to-night to advise with me about the matter, and now by heaven, not satisfied with declaring all this a hoax, you expect me to listen, and at midnight too, to that d—d poem of yours!  Tom Done Brown, you shall answer to me for this!"

            Crust was unmitigatedly mad.

            "Now that's very good!" answered the Bilious Rhymester with great coolness, and in a quiet tone, as though he were admiring an effort of histrionic genius—"very good.  Wouldn't it make a capital scene in a novel!  By the spirit of Shakspeare!"—the taper standing in the wash-stand throwing its softened beams around a small half decently furnished apartment, a coal stove rusted and time eaten placed in the fire place, with three bits of coal near it—a dingy carpet on the floor, and a dingier coating of superannuated white-wash on the cracked ceiling—an old bed with an older coverlid with the excited Bread Crust placed inside of it.

            "Yes—yes," screamed Crust, maddening at the picture, "and a d—d blackguard mass of carbuncled visage, and stiff pigs hair, and a shabby genteel figure resting upon two chairs!  Personified impudence, concentrated self-conceit—"

            "Pooh!  Harry!" said Done Brown, as his features wrinkled into a smile, and his gray eyes shared in the sport, "now I know you're deeply in love with the mysterious fair-Merino Shawl as you call her.  I can excuse any little improprieties in your speech.  Now just listen to my poem, the Ocean-Shore.  I've been at it twelve months.  Listen."

            "Well, well Tom, go ahead.  Only cuss the thing you shouldn't provoke me.  Go on Tom."  And so Bread Crust sank into a leaning position, and listened to the Ocean-Shore.  It was a good poem.  Such a mingling of invocations to this or that muse, with such descriptions of sun-sets, on this or that sea shore, such great big words, dragged neck-and-heels into the service, of poor, weak, sickly, consumptive ideas, and such graphic portraitures of fairy islands, placed a long way off in the middle of the sea, inhabited by fairies, and frequently visited by angels—it was a good poem, was that Ocean-Shore, and what added to its originality, was the fact of its being written on the Spenzerian stanza.  It was a very grand poem.

            "Ah, stop"—said Harry, at the conclusion of the first Canto, as he relapsed into his "lithping" dialect—"s-top! by Jove, that's as good as the piece I intend to send over to Bentley.  Damme, Tom, its fine.  Bew-tifully fine."

            "Now you don't say so?" inquired the Bilious Rhymester, as the cool impudence of his look was softened by the olive oil of flattery.  "Well Harry I do think it's good—indeed I do.  Ah, Harry, hello.  By the spirit of Shakespeare!  A thought strikes me!"

            He sprung on his feet, and rushed across the room, flung open a closet on one side of the mantle piece, dragged something out of it, and in an instant stood by the bedside, something white in his hand.

(To be continued.)

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[F5] "The Bread Crust Papers, Part Second" (continued), Spirit of the Times, March 29, 1842


By Eric Iterbil.

Part Second.


            "Who's crockery broke!" muttered the astonished Harry, "what's the row?"

            "By —, the very thing I wanted, Harry!—"

            "You're a royal good fellow.  See! they're clean."

            "The only clean dickey and collar I've got!" exclaimed Harry as his eyes distended in unmitigated surprise.

            "The very things I wanted, Harry.  I'm awfully hard up for clean linen, just now—did you know Harry Dickson?"

            "What in the devil has Harry Dickson got to do with my collar and dickey?"

            "Now allow me to tell you, and as my friend too Mr. Crust, that trifling on such a serious matter is too cussed bad."

            Crust opened his eyes until his eyebrows ascended to the roots of his crimson foliage.  What do you mean?" his look seemed to say.

            "Good heaven!  Is it possible?  Didn't you know that Harry Dickson died this—or rather yesterday afternoon at four?"

            "Devil the know!"

            "I'm invited to attend his funeral to-morrow at four.  'Carriages to proceed to Norristown,' so the invite reads.  I must go.  And its such a lucky chance that you've got a clean collar and a dickey.  He may have left me a—something you know.  Well Harry I'd better go.  Good ni—"

            "And how in the d—l do you know that I'll lend you the dickey and the collar?"  Crust leaned over the bedside as he put the question.

            "Know?  Pooh!  I know you will Harry.  D—n it haven't I done the same for you thousands of times?"

            "Yes, but you must recollect, that its all the dickey or collar I've got.  I've quarreled with Old Betsy Chickweed down in Union street.  She said she wouldn't wash for me any more, unless I paid her the standing bill of $5 62 1/2.  And so I cut her.  Just think of the vulgarity of the old catamaran!  And it's the same with the whole set of my washerwomen.  L—d I keep a suite of 'em.  When one won't 'tick it, I try another, but now they're all run out, and so damme you can't have the dickey, nor the collar, Mr. Brown."

            "Oh," exclaimed Brown, dropping in a chair, "speaking of the Crimson Shawl—how did you first become acquainted with her?"

            "Tom, sit down in that chair, and I'll tell you-Such an adventure!  By Jove I've never heard its equal.  Now Tom listen."

            He hemmed and hawed to clear his throat, and then slapping his hand on the pillow in an enthusiastic manner, he began:

            "You must know that on Friday night week, as I was standing at the corner of Sixth and Chestnut street, in front of Isaacs', eyeing the passers by, and all that sort of thing, I observed a female approaching, and as she passed the lamp I saw her face.  She was a luscious thing—quite!"

            Crust cast his eyes up to the ceiling, and tried to look enraptured.

            "Travel on Harry," observed Done Brown, depositing the dickey and collar beneath his vest, "I'm all attention."

            "I'll describe her to you.  Imagine a short, full figure, enveloped in a dark muslin frock, and with well turned shoulders, swelling bust, and all that, shown to every advantage, by the enveloping folds of a new merino shawl.  Delic-wus?  And then her face!  By Jove!  Full, plump, and rosy cheeks peeping from beneath the compass of a nice little straw bonnet—blue eyes—delicate cherry lips—O, spirit of all that bew-tiful, spare me the recollection!  Do Tom!"

            "Go on, Harry."  Tom turned aside for a moment, and a curious expression was visible in the slight wrinkle at the corner of each eye, and at either side of his mouth.

            "Well, since that night I've searched high and low, here, there, and every where, and still I've never been able to find the beauty, nor do I know her name.  So I call her Merino Shawl.  It's demd romantic.  And now, Tom, as for those disclosures?"

            "I was humbugging you, Harry.  Humbug—all humbug.  Good night Harry."

            "Demmit, but he's gone.  Hal-lo, Tom I say!  He's taken my dickey and collar too—T-o-m!"

            Crust jumped out of bed, and ran to the door, and opened it.

            "Well, if that isn't cool!" he cried as he heard the jar of the street door as it closed.  "Cool!  very!  There are times with me when I feel as tho' I could beat the life out of that man, but Lord tho', didn't I humbug him!  'Not know her name,' to be sure.  Why," continued he, with a pleasant chuckle, "that's rich, considering I've had several interviews with her, and—ha-ha-ha—I'm to have another to-morrow night!  By Jove its good!  He humbug me?  Pooh!"

            The joke seemed so very rich, that Bread Crust was forced to walk hurriedly up and down the small apartment, to prevent himself from bursting with laughter, while he rubbed his hands very pleasantly together, and as he grew tired of the peculiar way of expressing the idea that he was particularly pleased, he commenced a series of leaps, and then he ran along the floor, threw his length on the bed, jumped up and leaped again.

            "Humbugged!  Gloriously humbugged!  Hey?  What's that?"

            His attention was fixed upon a small white something on the floor.  He picked it up.

            "Hey!  A letter—opened too—and directed to Thomas Done Brown, Esq.!  What can it be about?  Tom and me are intimate friends, he knows all my secrets, and I know all his.  I'll open it."

            He opened it and read, and as he read, his under lip fell, and his white eyebrows raised to the roots of his hair, while his eyes distended with the most decided expression of something or other.  It looked very much like intense surprise.  Again and again he read the letter.  Here it is.


            Deerest Tomm—I think I can go to where you were mentioning when we met last  Mother does nott know anything abbout it, and so you need not let on to her  Recollect we are to go out in a cab  Wil it tak us cleer to Lemon Hill or will we hav to wak (walk?) part of the way  I wish you wud lett me know also whether we wil go to Fairmount first early in the mornin to see the sunn rise

Yours mosst affectionattely


            P.S. Remember to send an answer this evenin' whetther we go early in the mornin' or not.

            "By —, but I'm done brown!  The very name—yes it is!  It must be!  He thinks he's fooling me.  But I'll be even with him.  To-morrow morning—Fairmount—sunrise.  I'll be there.  I'll—I'll—I'll—"

            He gasped for breath.

            "I'll shoot him!"

            He sank in the chair beside the wash stand, and leaning one elbow on this article of bed room furniture, he plunged a hand into his disordered red hair, and with his grey eyes fixed vacantly on the coal stove, he mused again upon Angeline Sarah Smivers and Thomas Done Brown.

To be continued.

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[F6] "The Bread Crust Papers, Part Second" (continued again), Spirit of the Times, March 30, 1842


By Eric Iterbil.

Part Second.


II. Fairmount at Sunrise.

            "Angeline, I say, observe what a splendid spectacle!  Sunrise at Fairmount!  Grand!  Magnificent!  The wide expanse of the unclouded heavens, arching over the city with its thousand domes—"

            "Thousand what, Mr. Brown?"

            "Domes, Miss Smivers, domes.  Steeples, Miss Smivers, steeples.  There's Christ Church steeple, and yonder's the State House steeple.  That remarkably tall steeple is the Presbyterian Church, at the corner of Tenth and Arch street, and there, far far away, over the roofs of the houses is the round shot-tower near the Navy Yard.  What a beautiful sight!  Those light clouds floating in the pathway of the sun, and the glorious orb of day himself coming up the sky in all his light and beauty, the smoke arising from the innumerable roofs, and winding its way in spiral columns of airy nothing to the vast empyream."

            "If you haven't any objections, I'd like to walk round to the other side of the basin, Mr. Brown.—What was that you said last, Thomas?"

            Done Brown turned suddenly to his companion, and gave her what he emphatically styled 'a look.'

            "Laws bless us Tom, how queer you look!  Come—let's walk round the other side of the basin.  My, but there's Cherry Hill.  Do you learn them looks at the 'Rhetorical,' Thomas?"

            Thomas looked down from the basin, toward the city, and whistled.

            "That's a purty tune, Tom.  You don't know how my brother Bill can whistle Yankee Doodle.  He reely does it slick.  How nice the green trees are coming out, over yander at Lemon Hill. Tom.  I wonder what o'clock it is?"

            "Don't know," replied Done Brown, as his face brightened up with some evidence of good humor—"Why I vow, Angeline, but that merino shawl looks well this morning.  You have an uncommon good color.  You have."

            "No?" said Miss Smivers deprecatingly, "now you don't say so."

            "I do tho'," replied Tom with a polite gesture.—"By-the-bye, we've almost reached the ice house.—How clear, how deep, how translucid the waters of the Schuylkill seem, as pouring in a silver sheet over the dam, or precipice—yes, precipice, they mingle in the deep roar of the waters boiling below.  By the spirit of Shakspeare, but as Byron says—"

            "I wonder if it aint most time for breakfast?" inquired the innocent Miss Smivers, as her plump phiziognomy assumed an anxious expression.

            "Hey, Tom, look there!" she continued with a very quick utterance, as she pointed to the ice house on the north-western corner of the basin, "I say Tom didn't you see nothing?"

            "Nothing, but a sick poodle dog eating grass," replied Done Brown with a dignified air, as they continued their walk around the basin.  Thomas, it must be confessed, was a little chagrined.  His thin lips moved murmuringly, and he muttered to himself:—

            "Here have I been taking this girl out to Fairmount, and before sunrise too, on purpose to have a romantic stroll with her, and now, not satisfied with my paying the cab hire, she is talking about breakfast, breakfast.  Breakfast be d—d, I wonder if she knows that I haven't but a quarter about me?"

            "Why, Tom, I declare you're talkin' to yourself," interrupted Miss Smivers.  "I'll bet a sasser of ice cream that you're makin' up some poetry.  Now you needn't deny it.  I heard you wrote a good deal for the Amaranth.  Dear me how tired I am.—Come let's take a seat."

            They seated themselves on one of the benches of the small platform at the extreme height of the winding stairway, leading downward from the gravelled walk of the basin, and while Miss Angeline with sundry cautious glances of her pretty blue eyes, proceeded to arrange her merino shawl, Done Brown resumed his poetical strain.

            "When I behold a scene like the present, Miss Angeline, where dashing water, and blue heavens, and waving trees bending to the wooing air, mingle in a harmony as fascinating as natural, I feel the very depths of my soul stirred by the ripples of suasive feeling, and—"

            "Wont Harding's have done breakfast by the time we cross in the ferry boat?" gently inquired Miss Smivers.

            "By the spirit of Shakspeare this is intolerable!" muttered Brown to himself.  "Come Angeline," he continued aloud, "let's us proceed to breakfast."

            "Breakfast, who talks of breakfast!" cried an invisible voice, and ere Mr. Brown or Miss Angeline had time to utter an ejaculation of surprise, a mass of red hair and a flushed face was observed to arise slowly from under the opposite side of the platform, and in an instant, a slim body or figure, as you like it, arose after the head.  Another moment witnessed the figure in the act of climbing the railing, that  separates the platform from the sloping banks, covered with green sod.

            "Crust by all that's holy!" cried Brown, when he recovered his breath.

            "Why that's the feller that's been follerin' me about all the streets, night after night!" exclaimed Miss Smivers, with an expression of injured innocence on her plump and rosy features. "Lick him, Tom," she continued, with an air of quiet resignation.

            "You go not to breakfast until you have answered to me for your perfidy, Tom Done Brown!" cried the figure with the red summit, as rushing across the platform it confronted the Bilious Rhymester.  "Aye," continued he, in a loud voice, "aye, here, in this elevated spot, with the high heavens above you, with heaven's air around you, here, here, shall you answer for your perfidy.  I am a desperate man, Tom Done Brown!"

            "Come you sir, none of your sass"—began Miss Smivers.

            "What a pity for him"—exclaimed Mr. Brown, in a soliloquising manner—"What a pity that poor Crust should come out here to bathe, and then go out of his head all of a sudden.  Sit down, Harry.  You'll be better directly.  Are you taken this way frequently?"

            Crust could not reply.  He was boiling with rage.  He did everything but froth at the mouth.  With a quick movement he extended his right arm, and throwing out his right hand, he placed the thumb and forefinger in a peculiar position, and in a minute the nose of Mr. Brown was fixed between the identical thumb and forefinger, and shaken violently.

            In another instant the right arm of Mr. Brown was observed spinning round his head, and with the celerity incident to such occasions, it was brought suddenly downward, and the clenched hand lighted directly between Mr. Crust's eyes, and Mr. Crust fell sprawling on the platform floor.

            Mr. Brown took the arm of Miss Smivers, and they walked away.

            "Good bye dearie," said Miss Angeline, looking over her shoulder as they pursued their way around the basin, towards the south.  "Good bye dearie."

            "I say Crust," exclaimed Done Brown, also looking over his shoulder—"I say Crust, how's Harry Dickson? eh?  Are you going to his funeral?  Good bye Crust!"

            Crust arose slowly from the platform, and rubbed the wounded part between his eyes, and then glancing at the retreating pair, an expression of a very decided character came over his countenance. 

            "There remains but one thing for me," he said in the deep, quiet tone of desperation, "there remains but one thing for me, and that is—revenge!"

            In a moment he descended the stairway, and the platform was empty.

(To be continued)

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[F7] "The Bread Crust Papers, Part Second.  The Duel at Camden.  III. The Challenge. The Night Before the Duel," Spirit of the Times, March 31, 1842


By Eric Iterbil.

Part Second.


III. The Challenge.  The Night Before the Duel.

            Again did the taper burn in Bread Crust's room, and beside the washstand on which it stood, was seated Henry Bread Crust, with his figure enveloped in a dingy morning gown, one elbow resting upon the washstand, while his grey eyes were fixed upon a figure, which, placed in the other chair in the room, was moving its lips, shaking its arms, and giving other tokens of being in a state of positive existence.

This figure tall and slim, dressed in dainty black velvet coat, with a pretty flowered neckerchief around its neck, and a small, inexpressive face, with smooth even features, nicely relieved by lanky masses of dark brown hair, surmounting the neckerchief, was none other than Clarendon Crust, Esq., a very superior fellow, and a brother of the Bread Crust.

"How did he look when you gave him my note?" said Crust in his feminine voice, without the slightest smack of his usual affectation, "Did you mark him closely?"

"Why y-a-s,"—replied Clarendon, in a voice more manly than his brother's, but more strongly tinctured with the Chestnut street 'lithp.'  "He took the note, read it, lit his segar with it, and then asked me what kind of a day it was.  He was quite impudent; he was in-deed.  I've never saw s-u-ch complete nonchalance since I was in the naval service on the South American station at Rio Janeiro.  There on a bright morning a very dirty Spaniard—indeed I may say a filthy Spaniard asked me, whether I'd take a dirk or a segar.  He did in-d-eed.  I cut the fellow.  He was so low.  I had an extensive notion to pistol him but—I say Harry, which is the whitest, that sheet or your face?"

"He accepted the challenge!" said Crust abstractedly.

"Why, Harry, what a fellow you are!" replied Clarendon. "There's his reply at your elbow.  Time—five o'clock to-morrow morning—place, the grove in the Woodlands over at Camden,—weapons, pair of Colt's patent pistols.  He's particular indeed, very particular in specifying the smallest minuti of the small affair.  And, now Harry, good night.  I will meet you at half past three at Walnut street wharf.  Good night."

Clarendon Crust was gone.

Harry arose, and with an abstracted manner went to the closet of his room, drew two large sperm candles from its depths, and then displacing the wash-bowl, soap and pitcher from the washstand, he stuck one of the candles in a porter bottle, and the other he placed in a tin candlestick, covered with grease, not more than an inch thick.  With the same abstracted manner, he tore a blank leaf from a volume of his own poems on the mantle, and twisting it up he applied it to the light and then lighted the candle in the porter bottle.  He extended his hand to the other candle, and the lighted paper touched the wick, when the State-house clock began to strike the hour of nine.  He started back with an involuntary shudder, and the lighted paper fell from his hands.

Where will I be this time to-morrow night?" was the thought that flashed like a lightning-stroke across his mind.

"—two, three, four, five,"—rang the bell.

"I may be dead—A cold, clammy corse.  U-g-h." Crust shivered.

"—five, six, seven, eight"—

"Is there another world?  What"—He trembled.


"—will become of me?" Crust sat down and was wrapt in thought.

It was a half hour ere he recovered himself.  Then drawing writing materials from the closet, he wrote a letter to his mother, one to his father, one to each of his brothers, and one to his faithless merino shawl, Miss Smivers.  Having written "to be opened in case of my decease," on the back of each letter—he deposited them on the mantle, and then wondered what time it was?

His wonder was presently solved.  The watchman cried, "aa-oh, pa-oh, twel' o'clock," under his window.  The idea of sleeping did not enter the head of Crust, and so he proceeded to dress herself [sic].

Having placed a broken bit of looking glass on the washstand, he arrayed himself in his green frock coat, clean white pantaloons, light buff vest with metal buttons, neat flowered neckerchief, clean collar (it was borrowed) and a new pair of boots, (he had sponged them.)

It was now three o'clock.

"Hey!  What's that?" cried Crust, as he listened to a pattering sound outside of the window.  He looked out.  The heavens were as black as a dark closet, and the rain came down in torrents.

"It really seems as if all the young angels were pouring down the whole lot of cistern tubs in heaven," observed Crust, as he smiled.  His smile was ghastly.  He concluded it would be better to drop all jesting about the next world, at present, because there was no knowing how soon he might be called thither himself.

IV. The Journey to the Woodlands.

It was now a quarter past three, and having taken one fond, peculiar gaze at his room, Harry blew out the light, shut the door, ran down stairs, and found himself in the street.  He had forgotten his umbrella—or rather he had forgotten to borrow one.  There was no help for it now.  Go he must, and so wrapping his cloak around him and drawing his cap over his eyes, he started amid all the storm and rain down Chestnut street.  Having plunged knee deep into about half a dozen gutters, and 'tilted' twice the number of loose bricks, he arrived at Walnut street wharf and found Clarendon in the Coffee House at the corner.

"I say, H-a-rry, how dev'lish cold the wind blows, and  don't it rain!  However, all's right.  The ferry b-o-a-t don't cross for an hour yet; so I've got a boat, and a crusty old boatman.  Very crusty.  All's right.  Pistols and every other little matter.  Come along Harry."

"I think I'll take a cock-tail first," said Crust, "I say, let me have a stiff one."

A stiff one was made for Crust and his brother, gulped down, and in a minute the parties were insconced in the boat, with a big, stout, broad shouldered boatman in front of them.

"My G-d how it blows!" cried Clarendon as his umbrella was turned inside out, "I say f-r-iend," continued he, addressing the boatman, "did you ew-ah see such a night?"

"I can't say," replied the boatman pulling the thick collar of his shaggy over-coat up over his ears, as he struck out his oars, and propelled the boat from among the shipping, out into the stream.  "I can't say, but I think that I remember just such a night some fifteen years ago.  The Delaware boiled like a pot; just as it does now.  How pale the poor devil looked when he was brought back; he bled a bucket full, if he bled a drop!"

"Eh?" cried Crust, "bled?  Why did he bleed?"

"Why, H-a-rry, how your teeth chatters!" exclaimed Clarendon, "I decla-re you shake through your coat."

"Why did he bleed?  He was shot in a duel over at Camden.  The fellow who shot him put for New York, and the seconds went the Lord knows where.  Trim boat!"

"D-n it, there goes my umbrella!" cried Clarendon as he eyed the unfortunate article of wearing apparel, spinning away before the wind at some hundred yards distance.  "I'll sweah, but  I don't recollect such a night since I was on the South American station!  Ind-e-ed I don't."

So Clarendon relapsed into dead silence.  Crust's teeth chattered too much for all talking purposes, and the boatman had enough to do to keep his boat from careening.

After three quarters of an hour's hard buffeting, weary, drenched from top to toe with rain, and about as much dead as alive, Crust and his brother jumped on the railroad wharf at Camden just as the day began to scatter a dim and uncertain light over the creation of clouds and rain.

Having taken the pistol case carefully out of the boat, and wrapped them under his cloak, Clarendon proposed another cocktail.  The beverage was taken and they struck into the railroad, on their way to the Grove in the Woodlands.

"Well, if this ain't foine!" said Clarendon, "sough goes my foot into the mud at every step; what a night for shoe leather.  Eh?  Ha-rry?"

Harry assented to the proposition, and they travelled on in silence until they arrived at the Grove.

(Concluded to-morrow)