PART II. A VOYAGE TO BROBDINGNAG.
5. CHAPTER V.
[Several adventurers that happened to the author. The execution of
a criminal. The author shows his skill in navigation.]
I should have lived happy enough in that country, if my littleness
had not exposed me to several ridiculous and troublesome accidents;
some of which I shall venture to relate. Glumdalclitch often
carried me into the gardens of the court in my smaller box, and
would sometimes take me out of it, and hold me in her hand, or set
me down to walk. I remember, before the dwarf left the queen, he
followed us one day into those gardens, and my nurse having set me
down, he and I being close together, near some dwarf apple trees, I
must needs show my wit, by a silly allusion between him and the
trees, which happens to hold in their language as it does in ours.
Whereupon, the malicious rogue, watching his opportunity, when I
was walking under one of them, shook it directly over my head, by
which a dozen apples, each of them near as large as a Bristol
barrel, came tumbling about my ears; one of them hit me on the back
as I chanced to stoop, and knocked me down flat on my face; but I
received no other hurt, and the dwarf was pardoned at my desire,
because I had given the provocation.
Another day, Glumdalclitch left me on a smooth grass-plot to divert
myself, while she walked at some distance with her governess. In
the meantime, there suddenly fell such a violent shower of hail,
that I was immediately by the force of it, struck to the ground:
and when I was down, the hailstones gave me such cruel bangs all
over the body, as if I had been pelted with tennis-balls; however,
I made a shift to creep on all fours, and shelter myself, by lying
flat on my face, on the lee-side of a border of lemon-thyme, but so
bruised from head to foot, that I could not go abroad in ten days.
Neither is this at all to be wondered at, because nature, in that
country, observing the same proportion through all her operations,
a hailstone is near eighteen hundred times as large as one in
Europe; which I can assert upon experience, having been so curious
as to weigh and measure them.