BOOK XII. CONTAINING THE SAME INDIVIDUAL TIME WITH THE FORMER.
13. Chapter xiii. A dialogue between Jones and Partridge.
"By what I can see, Partridge," cries Jones, "hanging is a matter
non longe alienum a Scaevolae studiis." "You should say
alienus," says Partridge,--"I remember the passage; it is an example
under communis, alienus, immunis, variis casibus serviunt." "If you do remember it,"
cries Jones, "I find you don't understand it; but I tell thee, friend,
in plain English, that he who finds another's property, and wilfully
detains it from the known owner, deserves, in foro conscientiae, to
be hanged, no less than if he had stolen it. And as for this very
identical bill, which is the property of my angel, and was once in her
dear possession, I will not deliver it into any hands but her own,
upon any consideration whatever, no, though I was as hungry as thou
art, and had no other means to satisfy my craving appetite; this I
hope to do before I sleep; but if it should happen otherwise, I charge
thee, if thou would'st not incur my displeasure for ever, not to shock
me any more by the bare mention of such detestable baseness."
"I should not have mentioned it now," cries Partridge, "if it had
appeared so to me; for I'm sure I scorn any wickedness as much as
another; but perhaps you know better; and yet I might have imagined
that I should not have lived so many years, and have taught school so
long, without being able to distinguish between fas et nefas; but it
seems we are all to live and learn. I remember my old schoolmaster,
who was a prodigious great scholar, used often to say, Polly matete
cry town is my daskalon. The English of which, he told us, was, That
a child may sometimes teach his grandmother to suck eggs. I have lived
to a fine purpose, truly, if I am to be taught my grammar at this time
of day. Perhaps, young gentleman, you may change your opinion, if you
live to my years: for I remember I thought myself as wise when I was a
stripling of one or two and twenty as I am now. I am sure I always
taught alienus, and my master read it so before me."