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been possessed of it. What are all these artful rules and distinctions, and laws of civilized society, but the offspring of accursed knowledge and improvement ? They are so many traps, nets and gins, entangling and catching us whichever way we turn; and the learned, are like so many spiders, sitting on their webs, purposing to profit by the misfortunes of the poor devil, who should heedlessly be caught by their fine spun devices.

3. Knowledge is degrading. In acquiring it, we are under the necessity of relinquishing our freedom; and when we get it, we are converted from honest men into knaves. How much more noble and dignified it is to be above the petty details of science, and to support the character of lords of the creation, by despising all control. Your learned man is a mere artificial being. He has lost the real character of his species, being a compound of the fag-ends, scraps, fragments and habits of all who have gone before him. His body is a kind of substratum, in which meet together the conflicting absurdities of the whole world. His soul, if he has any, is like an old lumber-case, filled with the cast-off clothes of Confucius, Aristotle, and other blackguards of antiquity.

4. Knowledge is expensive. Heaven only knows what vast expensive sums are annually laid out for this worse than useless drug in the older nations. The peasant is ground in the dust, that some lord's son may learn the fooleries of a college. So far is this infatuation advanced, that nothing can be now done, without paying for the knowledge, which folly deems necessary to its accomplishment. Your honourable bodies know that we, your constituents, do actually pay you individually, for the superiour knowledge which you are wickedly and nefariously supposed to possess.

5. Knowledge is misery. May God's curse light on all, who first invented the delusion, and the tormenting perplexities of all science besiege the brain of him, who shall undertake to defend it. Your petitioner, in common with other good and worthy citizens, is, at this very moment, writhing under the agonies of knowledge. They know that the "times are hard," that money is scarce,

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that loan-office paper is no more like money than a poor, starveling, singed cat is like unto a full grown ring tail panther;" and they do most humbly beg, that this knowledge may be speedily removed far from them.

Your petitioner craves leave to refer your honourable bodies to the Osages, the Shawnees, the Pattawatamies, the Flat-heads, and other tribes of our red brethren, to illustrate and enforce the course of reasoning which he has pursued. Behold, in what happy ignorance of the endless perplexities of our vile institutions, they spend their days, troubled by no birchen rods in boyhood, no sharp corners of the law, no innumerable provisions of statutes in the business of the middle age, and driven to a premature death by no failures of banks, and fluctuations of trade.

Your petitioner desires that the wisdom of the legislature may be shown in the prohibition of all that tends to increase the evils and perplexities with which he is surrounded; and that schools may be forbidden by statute, pedagogues kicked out of the state, and boys turned loose to sport in the prairies, as is fit and becoming among the wise men of the great state of Missouri--and your petitioner will ever pray, &c.

XVI. A SAILOR'S PETITION.
[Morning Chronicle. Baltimore.]

THE following pathetic and humorous petition was actually presented to the legislature of Maryland, on the 20th December, 1805.

TO THE HONOURABLE THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF MARYLAND, NOW ANCHORED IN THE CITY OF ANNAPOLIS.

THE humble petition of poor John Clarke, of the city of Baltimore, shewing to your honours that your unfortunate petitioner, while ploughing the domains of old Neptune, having carried rather taught sails in a stormy weather, the gales of misfortune blowing hard, he overran his reckoning, the watch on deck keeping a bad lookout, he was stranded on the shoals of poverty; soon after, overhauled and made prisoner by the commander

of a press-gang, called the sheriff of Baltimore, and he now lies locked under the hatches in limbo, to the grief of darling Poll, and his sweet little crew, who, since his imprisonment, have been on short allowance. Therefore, your petitioner prays, that your honours will order the hatches to be unbarred by act of insolvency, that his fasts may be cut, he again put to sea on a cruise, in hopes that fortune may prove kind in the distribution of prize-money, and poor Jack once more enabled to cheer the hearts of his darling Poll and her sweet babes→→ And your petitioner will ever pray.

XVII. STUPIDITY vs. GENIUS.
[Inquirer. Nantucket.]

IMPOSTORS and pretenders have swarmed in every age, and will probably continue to be in vogue so long as mankind are determined to pay for being imposed upon.

The present age is not a whit behind any former one in the production of charlatans and mountebanks of every profession. We begin to believe that there is in human nature, some inherent property, which, as it has hitherto preserved, will forever perpetuate, the existence of such illusions. This principle may be discovered in that violent smack for the marvellous which most men naturally possess; and in that consequent readiness to enrich a jack-pudding, who offers some short cut to health, wealth or knowledge, rather than to bestow the slighest encouragement on a man of genius and science, who points out the more certain, though less speedy means. So long as this taste for the astonishing prevails, the "trade and mystery" of quackery will flourish; the Solomons will grow fat on "Balm of Gilead;" the Wards will line their nests with Asaitic down, and pseudo-politicians, sham-lawyers, and counterfeit-teachers will find ample scope for the display of their sundry crafts.

Another reason for our conclusion aforesaid may be found in the fact that a great portion of mankind are extremely jealous of those whose superior faculties and attainments elevate them an inch above the common level. They cannot, either through envy, or some equally vile

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feeling, relish the fruits of learning; but would prefer to associate with kindred ignorance-like the countryman, who fainted at the smell of perfumery, but recovered on having his nose rubbed with horse-dung!

Moreover, the present is a grand labour-saving period; things go by steam-and machinery is contrived to save both manual and intellectual friction. We shall soon have steam grammar and cast iron arithmetic. Professors of all sorts of occult arts are peregrinating the country, pointing out the turnpike to universal knowledge, and flourishing their diplomas, certificates, and testimonials from Hagag, Hugag and Scanderbeg. Yesterday, we had a visit from an instructer of the Arosaguntakuk language, who teaches that useful acquirement in three lessons, at only a shilling each. To-day, we have a cheap teacher of penmanship, who is so busy that he procures an influential friend to write his advertisements. Here is one who proposes, like Dr. Pangloss, to improve our cacology, and who, in short, can make us perfectly acquainted with stenography in half a lesson. Here is another practitioner, with M. D. and A double S at the fag-end of his other names, who will wrench all the grinders from your jaws for almost nothing. Another offers to make us thorough proficients in our mother tongue, by means of a grammar machine, which will grind a noun into adjectives, or a verb into participles, in less than no time. Another exhibits a grammar-map, delineating the whole perambulations of the nominative case, through its crooked verbal passages, into the case objective. Tomorrow, we expect a still greater genius, who will show us "the mode of catching gulls" by means of the viscus of impudence; and how to strip off a sheep's fleece by the bare application of a charm called a RECOMMENDATION."

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All these masters of arts are generally well paid, while the modest, unassuming man of genuine knowlege, having become an every-day acquaintance, ceases to claim our favour. He may exhaust his time, his property, his genius, in attempts to add something to the general stock of science, and he meets no praise, no support, no re-

compense,

XIX. IMPORTANT DUEL.
[Gazette. Washington.]

"He who fights and runs away,
"May live to fight another day."

THE attention of the good people of this metropolis, has been considerably excited by an "affair of honour," which lately took place in this vicinity, and which the fates had decreed to be less bloody than was to be expected; "all conquering love" was supposed by many, and confidently believed, to have been the prime cause of the ruthless contention. Discord and love seemed to have conspired to send two fearless rivals to the Stygian shades, and fame had already sharpened her pen to record their "deeds of arms," when it was supposed by many, that Pallas dropt down from her etherial realm and turned the "whizzing deaths" aside, unwilling that the services of two of her most hopeful children, should be thus lost to mankind.

More discriminating wiseacres, however, have derived another cause, and fearlessly assert that the quarrel has a "political complexion," and the knowing ones have hinted, rather obscurely, that the next presidential election depended in a great measure, upon the issue of the rencontre. This question, however, we shall leave to the sagacity of those, whose peculiar province it is, to pry into the dark recesses of political intrigue, and "drag the struggling monsters forth to-day."

The parties were two "highly respectable" coloured gentlemen, Quashee and Sambo, both of whom were particularly distinguished in the way in which their respective geniuses led them. Quashee, had rendered himself famous as a powerful " bruiser," and Sambo was not less famous for his untiring loquacity and exhilirat ing powers of oratory. Often in council, had he stood first among the foremost, while the thunders of Demosthenean eloquence poured from his lips, like a resistless torrent, striking his impotent adversaries dumb, and carrying unqualified conviction in its course.

Whatever might have excited the resentment of Quashee, he doubtless felt that his honour had received a stain which could only be erased by the blood of Sam

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