BOOK VII. CONTAINING THREE DAYS.
11. Chapter xi. The adventure of a company of soldiers.
A violent dispute now arose, in which every word may be said to have
been deposed upon oath; for the oaths were at least equal to all the
other words spoken. In this controversy the whole company spoke
together, and every man seemed wholly bent to extenuate the sum which
fell to his share; so that the most probable conclusion which could be
foreseen was, that a large portion of the reckoning would fall to the
landlord's share to pay, or (what is much the same thing) would remain
All this while Mr Jones was engaged in conversation with the serjeant;
for that officer was entirely unconcerned in the present dispute,
being privileged by immemorial custom from all contribution.
The dispute now grew so very warm that it seemed to draw towards a
military decision, when Jones, stepping forward, silenced all their
clamours at once, by declaring that he would pay the whole reckoning,
which indeed amounted to no more than three shillings and fourpence.
This declaration procured Jones the thanks and applause of the whole
company. The terms honourable, noble, and worthy gentleman, resounded
through the room; nay, my landlord himself began to have a better
opinion of him, and almost to disbelieve the account which the guide
The serjeant had informed Mr Jones that they were marching against the
rebels, and expected to be commanded by the glorious Duke of
Cumberland. By which the reader may perceive (a circumstance which we
have not thought necessary to communicate before) that this was the
very time when the late rebellion was at the highest; and indeed the
banditti were now marched into England, intending, as it was thought,
to fight the king's forces, and to attempt pushing forward to the
Jones had some heroic ingredients in his composition, and was a hearty
well-wisher to the glorious cause of liberty, and of the Protestant
religion. It is no wonder, therefore, that in circumstances which
would have warranted a much more romantic and wild undertaking, it
should occur to him to serve as a volunteer in this expedition.