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not escape my doom : I lay quite still, and listened, in an agony of suspense. After a dreary pause, I heard his foot-fall, but indistinctly; no light was visible, the lantern was still shaded. We were now in the antichapel, and I began to hope that I should escape unseen and unobserved, when, all on a sudden, I heard the chapel door creak slowly on its hinges, and in a moment thereafter the bolts shut into their rest. He had locked the door upon me; what was to be done? Let what would happen, I was sure of a most severe thrashing for being so long absent from my chamber; and, perhaps, I might be discovered in the chapel, and then I should be flogged, and not improbably be expelled; for I durst not discover how or why I came there. At length I determined on what to do, and made myself easy on the subject. I knew that it must be near eight o'clock, and at that hour the chapel door would be open; I therefore crept up into a corner behind the door, where I waited till a few boys were entered, when I came from my hiding place, and marched up to the middle of the room, as if I had just entered from without. No one observed this, and I had thus, to my great joy, gotten over one danger. After chapel I returned to my chamber, where I was questioned about my absence. I answered, that I had fallen asleep upon the stone walk of the quadrangle. I was immediately horsewhipped most cruelly, for nearly ten minutes, and told, that this was merely a little, gentle specimen of what I was to experience, it ever again I were catched tripping. This gentle specimen of mine puts me in mind of a circumstance which occurred about this time, and which serves to shew the unlicensed barbarity of the brutes in a striking point of view. A young gentleman from Berkshire, a junior in the seventh chamber, had, for some trivial reason, I forget what, incurred the displeasure of a præfeet in the fourth chamber. The culprit, a boy abont. thirteen, was sent for, and ordered to pull off his gown and waistcoat; which being done, the amiable præpositor proceeded tolay on, with a large faggot-stiek, on the almost naked body, but particularly on the left arm, as if he were thrashing a wheat sheaf. The consequence of this exhibition was the almost total gangrene of the arm. The boy was obliged to be carried to the sick-house, where he had been confined more than a month, when the under master, suspecting that nothing ailed him, but that he staid there merely to escape his schoolbusiness, went down in order to send him abroad, the cant term for making a boy exchange the sick-house for the school. When the pedagogue saw the lad's arm, even his callous heart, albeit unused to the melting mood,' was touched with pity, and he insisted upon knowing what præfect had beaten him in this manner; for he was well aware that a præfect's humanity was the most likely cause of such an appearance.
The boy, not daring to confess the truth, said, that he fell against one of the buttresses of the college ; and in this tale he persisted. The master finding, and well knowing also, that it was in vain to question the child, whose life would not have been safe if he had discovered the faggot-stick wielder, had recourse to the præpositor of the hall; to whom he said, that the præfect must be found out, and some notice taken, for he thought the boy would die, and the college might get into some disgrace if the children were suffered to be murdered in this way.
I wish,' said the little bum-brusher,' that you gentlemen præfects would have a little consideration when you beat the juniors, and stop on this side death.' The præfect in question was soon found, for all the school knew of this, as well as very many other deeds of iniquity which he had been guilty of. The under master made a pompous show of his displeasure at such barbarity, and, in a theatrical tone, declared, that he must refer it to the ............, whereupon expulsion would ensue. The præpositor, terrified out of his senses, besought, in the most abject manner, of the boy whom he had beaten, to intercede in his behalf, promising how kind he would be to him in future, how he would protect him by his authority, &c. The boy did intercede, and prevailed on the master not to make the
acquainted with the circumstance. The pedagogue then declared, that he himself would punish the præfect; and accordingly, the next day, the beast was flagellated in the school at eleven o'clock, that being an hour when none, save the under master, entered the school, and, therefore, best calculated to prevent the other master from knowing any thing of the matter. After this transaction, any ordinary mortal would suppose that the præpositor at least treated the junior not unkindly, if with no peculiar tenderness; but whoever imagined this, would be widely mistaken ; I have myself been many times witness to his cruel and tyrannical treatment of that poor boy. And yet, so little is the world, in general, aware of the systematic brutality carried on in ................... that this man has, within a few years after this his wondrous exploit, been entrusted with the care of a great number of his fellow-creatures in the capacity of a schoolmaster. Not long after he left ............, he was elected master of the grammar school at Tiverton in Devonshire.”