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"MY TURNKEY."

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"But possibly you begin to see, Gaffer John Bull, that I am no felon at all, and have committed no crime at all, notwithstanding your new Act of Parliament in that case made and provided. Mr. Grace excuses himself for putting me into convict dress, says he had no instructions to the contrary, and did not know how they might feel towards me at the Castle, and so he was afraid to refuse when the Smithfield Jailer required to see me in felon array.

"Curious that this should have happened twice. In Dublin also, I had to put on the convict dress, and strip it off immediately. Come, my Lord Clarendon, either I am a felon, or am not a felon."

"30th.-My turnkey, who is desired never to leave me, I find to be a good, quiet sort of creature. He is some kind of dissenter; hums psalm tunes almost under his breath, and usually stays as far away from me as our bounds will allow him. There is a door in the high wall leading into another enclosure; and as I was taking

56

EDWARD WALSH.

a turn through my territory to-day, the turnkey was near that door; and he said to me, in a low voice, This way, sir, if you please.'

"He held the door open. I passed through, and immediately a tall gentleman-like person in black, but rather over-worn clothes, came up to me and grasped both my hands, with every demonstration of reverence. I knew his face, but could not at first remember who he was. He was Edward Walsh, author of 'Mo Craoibhin Cno' and other sweet songs, and of some very musical translations from old Irish ballads.

"Tears stood in his eyes as he told me he had contrived to get an opportunity of seeing and shaking hands with me before I should leave Ireland. I asked him what he was doing at Spike Island, and he told me he had accepted the office of teacher to a school they keep here for small convicts. A very wretched office, indeed, and to a shy, sensitive creature like Walsh, it must be daily torture.

"He stooped down and kissed my hands. 'Ah!'

DEPARTURE FROM IRELAND.

57

he said, 'you are now the man in all Ireland

most to be envied.'

"I answered that I thought there might be room for difference of opinion about that. Then, after another kind word or two, being warned by my turnkey, I bade him farewell, and retreated into my own den. Poor Walsh! He has a family of young children, and seems broken in health and spirits. Ruin has been on his trace for years, and I think has him in the wind at last."

John Mitchel's stay at Spike Island was short; but three days. He went there on the 28th May, 1848, and left on the 1st of June.

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"June 1st. It was a raw, damp morning, I took my last look of Irish land. The first lieutenant of the Scourge, in full costume, with cocked hat and sword, came for me with a boat full of marines. The Scourge lay about a mile distant-a long, rakish-looking steamer, with black hull and two funnels. In a few minutes, I stepped on deck, and was presented to the captain, who was walking on the quarter-deck. He

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ON BOARD THE "SCOURGE."

lifted his cap, and asked me to go below, and he would show me my quarters.

"The principal cabin is very handsome, divided into two rooms, of which the one farthest aft is to be occupied by me as a sleeping cabin. It has couches, chairs, and a table, and is lighted by all the stern windows. During the day, both rooms are to be open to me,—and the captain said, that as he is obliged to consider me a prisoner, there will be a marine always stationed at the foot of the companion ladder, and that whenever I desire to go upon deck-which I may do when I please, I am to inform the sentry, who will summon the sergeant. That, for the rest, he hoped his hours would suit me, when breakfast, dinner, and so forth, will be served in the chief cabin.

"He is a quiet, saturnine, bilious, thin man, of about fifty, with a very low voice. Not at all a bluff seaman, or a jolly tar, or the like; yet, I dare say, an excellent officer, and will execute his orders."

We shall take up and continue John Mitchel's

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history, and avail ourselves of his experience

when we visit Bermuda. For the present we shall say, au revoir.

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