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Canute. Does the sea, with its loud boisterous waves, obey me? Will that terrible element be still at my bidding ?
Offa. Yes, the sea is yours; it was made to bear your ships upon its bosom, and to pour the treasures of the world at your royal feet. It is boisterous to your enemies, but it knows you to be its sovereign.
Canute. Is not the tide coming up ?
Oswald. Yes, my liege; you may perceive the swell already.
Canute. Bring me a chair, then; set it here upon the sands.
Offa. Where the tide is coming up, my gracious lord ?
Canute. Yes, set it just here.
Oswald ( aside.) I wonder what he is going to do!
Offa ( aside.). Surely he is not such a fool as to believe us.
Canute. O mighty Ocean! thou art my subject: my courtiers tell me so: and it is thy bounden duty to obey me. Thus, then, I stretch my sceptre over thee, and command thee to retire. Roll back thy swelling waves, nor let them presume to wet the feet of me, thy royal master.
Oswald ( aside.) I believe the sea will
pay very little regard to his royal commands.
Offa. See how fast the tide rises !
Oswald. The next wave will come up to the chair. It is folly to stay; we shall be covered with salt water.
Canute. Well, does the seą obey my commands ? if it be my subject, it is a very rebellious subject. See how it swells, and dashes the angry foam and salt spray over my sacred person.
Vile sycophants ! did you think I was the dupe of your base lies ? that I believed your abject flatteries? Know, there is only one Being whom the sea will obey. He is sovereign of heaven and earth,
King of kings, and Lord of lørds. It is only He who can say to the ocean“ Thus far shalt thou go, but no farther, and here shall thy proud waves be stayed.”. A king is but a man; and a man is but a worm.
Shall a worm assume the power of the great God, and think the elements will obey him? Take away this crown, I will never wear it more. May kings learn to be humble from my example, and courtiers learn truth from your disgrace.
THE HISTORY AND ADVENTURES
SOME days ago died GRIMALKIN, the favourite tabby Cat of Mrs. Petlove. Her disorder was a shortness of breath, proceeding partly from old age, and partly from fat. As she felt her end approaching, she called her children to
her, and with a great deal of difficulty spoke as follows.
Before I depart from this world, my children, I mean, if my breath will give me leave, to relate to you the principal events of my life, as the variety of scenes I have gone through may afford you some useful instruction for avoiding those dangers to which our species are particularly exposed.
Without further preface then, I was born at a farm-house in a village some miles hence; and almost as soon as I came into the world, I was very near leaving it again. My mother brought five of us at a litter; and as the frugal people of the house only kept Cats to be useful, and were already sufficiently stocked, we were immediately doomed to be drowned; and accordingly a boy was ordered to take us all and throw us into the horse-pond. This commission he performed with the pleasure boys
seem naturally to take in acts of cruelty, and we were presently set a swimming. While we were struggling for life, a little girl, daughter to the farmer, came running to the pond side, and begged very hard that she might save one of us, and bring him up for her own. After some dipute, her request was granted; and the boy reaching out his arm, took hold of me, who was luckily nearest him, and brought me out when I was just spent. I was laid on the grass, and it was some time before I reco. vered. The girl then restored me to my mother, who was overjoyed to get again one of her little ones; and for fear of another mischance, she took me in her mouth to a dark hole, where shc kept me till I could see, and was able to run by her side. As soon as I came to light again, my little mistress took possession of me, and tended me very carefully. Her fondness, indeed, was