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      "Well, that's all right," said Pen.


      [263] Westbrook to Dummer, 23 March, 1723, in Collections Mass. Hist. Soc., Second Series, viii. 264.


      V1 Five days before, Contrec?ur had sent Jumonville to scour the country as far as the dividing ridge of the Alleghanies. Under him were another officer, three cadets, a volunteer, an interpreter, and twenty-eight men. He was provided with a written summons, to be delivered to any English he might find. It required them to withdraw from the domain of the King of France, and threatened compulsion by force of arms in case of refusal. But before delivering the summons Jumonville was ordered to send two couriers back with all speed to Fort Duquesne to inform the commandant that he had found the English, and to acquaint him when he intended to communicate with them. [148] It is difficult to imagine any object for such an order except that of enabling Contrec?ur to send to the spot whatever force might be needed to attack the English on their refusal to withdraw. Jumonville had sent the two couriers, and had hidden himself, apparently to wait the result. He lurked nearly two days within five miles of Washington's camp, sent out scouts to reconnoitre it, but gave no notice of his presence; played to perfection the part of a skulking enemy, and brought destruction on himself by conduct which can only be ascribed to a sinister motive on the one hand, or to extreme folly on the other. French deserters told Washington that the party came as spies, and were to show the summons only if threatened by a superior force. This last assertion is confirmed by 149

      These letters to Bourlamaque, in their detestable handwriting, small, cramped, confused, without stops, and sometimes almost indecipherable, betray the writer's state of mind. "I should like as well as anybody to be Marshal of France; but to buy the honor with the life I am leading here would be too much." He recounts the last news from Fort Duquesne, just before its fall. "Mutiny among the Canadians, who want to come home; the officers busy with making money, and stealing like mandarins. Their commander sets the example, and will come back with three or four hundred thousand francs; the pettiest ensign, 169

      V1 one that convulsed Europe and shook America, India, the coasts of Africa, and the islands of the sea."Not you?"


      In the confused and tumultuous history of the savages of this continent one now and then sees some tribe or league of tribes possessed for a time with a spirit of conquest and havoc that made it the terror of its neighbors. Of this the foremost example is that of the Five Nations of the Iroquois, who, towards the middle of the seventeenth century, swept all before them and made vast regions a solitude. They were now comparatively quiet; but far in the Northwest, another people, inferior in number, organization, and mental capacity, but not in ferocity or courage, had begun on a smaller scale, and with less conspicuous success, to play a similar part. These were the Outagamies, or Foxes, with their allies, the Kickapoos and the Mascoutins, all living at the time within the limits of the present States of Wisconsin and Illinois,the Outagamies near Fox River, and the others on Rock River.[280] The Outagamies, in particular, seem to have been seized with an access of homicidal fury. Their hand was against every man, and for twenty years and more they were the firebrands of the West, and a ceaseless peril to French interests in that region. They were, however, on good terms with the Five Nations, by means of whom, as French writers say, the Dutch and English of Albany sent them gifts and messages to incite[Pg 279] them to kill French traders and destroy the French fort at Detroit. This is not unlikely, though the evidence on the point is far from conclusive.

      He had glaring faults, some of them of a sort not to have been expected in him. Vanity, the common weakness of small minds, was the most disfiguring foible of this great one. He had not the simplicity which becomes greatness so well. He could give himself theatrical airs, strike attitudes, and dart stage lightnings from his eyes; yet he was formidable even in his affectations. Behind his great intellectual powers lay a burning enthusiasm, a force of passion and fierce intensity of will, that gave redoubled impetus to the fiery shafts of his eloquence; and the haughty and masterful nature of the man had its share in the ascendency which he long held over Parliament. He would blast the labored argument of an adversary by a look of scorn or a contemptuous wave of the hand.

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      She became angry immediately. "Why not? Is it because of the danger to my reputation? ... How perfectly silly under the circumstances!""'T was ten o'clock in the morning when first the fight begun,

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      [234] Autobiography of Franklin.He was in a hateful temper the rest of the way. When he thought Pen was not looking at him his eyes darted sidelong jealous glances at her. Clearly his suspicions were aroused, and he was meditating some sort of mischief. It was a catastrophe. But Pen did not see how she could have acted differently.

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