Antiquary, the
by Scott, Walter
Hard Cover

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4 The World Resource Dist.
Springfield, MO, USA


More About Antiquary, the by Scott, Walter

Chrononhotonthologos.It was early on a fine summer's day, near the end of the eighteenth century, when a young man, ofgenteel appearance, journeying towards the north-east of Scotland, provided himself with a ticket inone of those public carriages which travel between Edinburgh and the Queensferry, at which place, as the name implies, and as is well known to all my northern readers, there is a passage-boat forcrossing the Firth of Forth. The coach was calculated to carry six regular passengers, besides suchinterlopers as the coachman could pick up by the way, and intrude upon those who were legally inpossession. The tickets, which conferred right to a seat in this vehicle, of little ease, were dispensedby a sharp-looking old dame, with a pair of spectacles on a very thin nose, who inhabited a "laighshop," anglice, a cellar, opening to the High Street by a straight and steep stair, at the bottom ofwhich she sold tape, thread, needles, skeins of worsted, coarse linen cloth, and such feminine gear, to those who had the courage and skill to descend to the profundity of her dwelling, without fallingheadlong themselves, or throwing down any of the numerous articles which, piled on each side ofthe descent, indicated the profession of the trader below.The written hand-bill, which, pasted on a projecting board, announced that the QueensferryDiligence, or Hawes Fly, departed precisely at twelve o'clock on Tuesday, the fifteenth July 17-, inorder to secure for travellers the opportunity of passing the Firth with the flood-tide, lied on thepresent occasion like a bulletin; for although that hour was pealed from Saint Giles's steeple, andrepeated by the Tron, no coach appeared upon the appointed stand. It is true, only two tickets hadbeen taken out, and possibly the lady of the subterranean mansion might have an understandingwith her Automedon, that, in such cases, a little space was to be allowed for the chance of filling upthe vacant places-or the said Automedon might have been attending a funeral, and be delayed bythe necessity of stripping his vehicle of its lugubrious trappings-or he might have staid to take ahalf-mutchkin extraordinary with his crony the hostler-or-in short, he did not make hisappearance.The young gentleman, who began to grow somewhat impatient, was now joined by a companionin this petty misery of human life-the person who had taken out the other place. He who is bentupon a journey is usually easily to be distinguished from his fellow-citizens. The boots, the greatcoat, the umbrella, the little bundle in his hand, the hat pulled over his resolved brows, thedetermined importance of his pace, his brief answers to the salutations of lounging acquaintances, are all marks by which the experienced traveller in mail-coach or diligence can distinguish, at adistance, the companion of his future journey, as he pushes onward to the place of rendezvous. It isthen that, with worldly wisdom, the first comer hastens to secure the best berth in the coach forhimself, and to make the most convenient arrangement for his baggage before the arrival of hiscompetitors. Our youth, who was gifted with little prudence, of any sort, and who was, moreover, bythe absence of the coach, deprived of the power of availing himself of his priority of choice, amused 4himself, instead, by speculating upon the occupation and character of the personage who was nowcome to the coach offi

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  • PID: 17167127679
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson & Sons LTD
  • Seller: 4 The World Resource Dist.
    Description: 16mo-over 5¾"-6¾" tall.
    Condition: Good
    Notes: No markings.