King of the Beggars - Chapter XXI

Chapter XXI

His Journey to Ireland.

            Our hero made the best of his way to Holyhead, and begging a passage on board the packet to Dublin, after a fine trip landed at Ring's End, near that city. His first inquiry here was for an old acquaintance, and in particular for one Mr. Crab and Lord Annesley, who had been schoolfellows with him at Tiverton. He found my Lord Annesley lived a mile from the town, but did not see him the first day, being gone to Blessington, as the servants told him. Accordingly he set out for that town the next day, where he found my lord at a tavern with several officers; he went in, and told the tavern-keeper he wanted to speak with his lordship; but, as his appearance was none of the best, the tavern-keeper did not like to deliver this message to my lord, but asked what his business was. Tell him, said he, that I am an old school-fellow of his, and want to see him. My lord, being told this, came out with two gentlemen, and inquired who he was; which our hero told him. Ha! Mr. Carew, said his lordship, is it you, man? walk in, walk in. What, said one of the captains, is this old Carew? the very same, replied my lord. After he had sat down for some time, and talked over several old affairs with my lord, one of the captains asked him if he could get him a good pointer. Ay, ay, that he can, replied his lordship; for, by my soul, man, he and I have stolen many a dog, and lain in many a hay tallet, in our youthful days. Then turning to Mr. Carew, he told his fame was spread as much in Ireland as in England. Indeed it is so, replied one of the captains. His lordship then asked him how he found him out there. He replied, he had been directed there by their old school-fellow, Crab. Well, said my lord, you shall go home along with me. He desired to be excused, as he designed to go and see lord St. Leger, who was another of his school-fellows; but my lord swore by his soul he should go home along with him, and visit Lord St. Leger another time; accordingly a good horse was provided for him, and they all set out for Dublin.

            The next day my Lord Annesley took him to his own house. During his abode here, which was about a fortnight, our hero received great civilities from the Irish gentry; Lord Annesley introducing him to all the chief company in the city, as the man they had heard so much talk of. One day Mr. O'Brien, a gentleman of great fortune, being in company, asked Mr. Carew if he had ever been on board the Yarmouth man-of-war; he replied, that he had been in her up the Baltic. The gentleman asked if he remembered a young gentleman about fourteen years of age, very fat, and who had a livery-servant to wait on him. He replied, that he remembered him very well, and that he was blest with as beautiful a face as any youth he ever saw. The gentleman then asked him if he recollected what became of him; which he answered, by saying he died at Gosport a day or two after they landed; and that Mr. Price, of Pool, composed a Latin epitaph for him; at which the gentleman could not refrain letting fall some tears, it being his own brother he was speaking of. He then asked what men-of-war were with them at that time; all which he gave a very good account of, saying, Sir Charles Wager and Rear-Admiral Walton commanded; Sir Charles carrying a red flag at the fore-topmast head of the Torbay, and the latter a blue at the mizen of the Cumberland, both eighty-gun ships. The gentleman replied, he was satisfied, for he had given a very faithful account of everything; he then made Mr. Carew a present to drink his health when he came to England, as Lord Annesley said he would supply him while he was in Ireland. A great hunting-match being proposed, Lord Annesley told them that Mr. Carew could make one with the best of them at the diversion, upon which he was desired to make one of the party. Accordingly, they set out very early next morning, and had fine sport, he exerting all his abilities, though he was afraid of riding into some bogs, of which the country is full. When the chase was ended, they all went to Lord Annesley's to dinner, and the company allowed him to be an excellent sportsman.

            Lord Annesley afterwards took him to Newry and many other places, introducing him to much company. At length he desired liberty to go and see his old school-fellow, Lord St. Leger, at Doneraile, which Lord Annesley would not consent to, unless he promised to call upon him again on his return; which agreeing to do, he sent his servant with him as far as Blessington. Parting with the servant here, he travelled to Kilkenny; thence to Cashel, (where is a fine seat belonging to Lord Mark Ker,) Clonmel, and Cahir, where our hero was taken dangerously ill. It would be unpardonable not to mention the hospitality he was treated with here. His good landlady, finding him so ill, sent for the minister of the place to come and pray by him, which he accordingly did, and at going away clapped half-a-crown into his hand, and soon after sent an apothecary to him, who administered what medicines were proper for him, which had so good an effect as to enable him to get upon his legs: however, they would not let him proceed forward for several days, lest he should relapse; and before he set out, the minister of the parish sent his clerk round the place to make a collection for the stranger. At length, being perfectly recovered, he set out for Lord St. Leger's. When he came there, and was introduced, my lord presently recollected him, and cried, Why sure, and doubly sure, it is Carew! He then asked how long he had been in Ireland; adding, he hoped he would stay with him for some time. His lordship made him very welcome, and they talked over some of the merry pranks they had played together. Mr. Carew inquired if Sir Matthew Day, another of their old schoolfellows, was alive. His lordship told him he was dead; but that there was a young gentleman would be glad to see any old friend of his father's. He abode with Lord St. Leger about a fortnight, being entertained in the kindest manner possible; at his departure, my lord made him a handsome present, and gave him a good suit of clothes, with a recommendatory letter to young Mr. Day.

            Here he was received with great civility, as well upon account of Lord St. Leger's letter, as being an old school-fellow of Mr. Day's father. The conversation happening to turn upon dogs, Mr. Day told him he had heard he was very famous for enticing dogs away, and that Sir William Courtenay's steward had told him there was not a dog could resist his allurements; however, he believed he had one that would; he then ordered a surly morose dog to be brought out, and offered to lay a wager he could not entice him away, which he readily accepted, and began to whistle to the dog, but found him very surly; upon which he took out a little bottle, and dropping a few drops upon a bit of paper, held it unseen to the dog, and then told Mr. Day the dog would follow him to England. Away then he went, and the dog after him. Mr. Day and his servants all followed, calling Roger, Roger, which was the name of the dog; but Roger turning a deaf ear to all they could say, not thinking proper to turn about once. Mr. Carew having diverted himself sufficiently, by leading Mr. Day and his servants above half-a-mile, turned back again, with the dog still following him. Having abode here some days, he took his leave, receiving a handsome present from Mr. Day; he then returned back to Lord Annesley, and thence to Kinsale, where he took the first opportunity of a vessel, and landed at Padstow, in Cornwall, after a short and pleasant passage.

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