Laurence Sterne,-A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy

 
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[129]

NAMPONT.

THE POSTILLION.

THE concern which the poor
fellow's story threw me into,
required some attention: the po-
stillion paid not the least to it, but
set off upon the pavé in a full gallop.

The thirstiest soul in the most
sandy desert of Arabia could not have
wished more for a cup of cold water,
than mine did for grave and quiet
movements; and I should have had
an high opinion of the postillion had
he but stolen off with me in some-
thing like a pensive pace--- On the

VOL. I.          K         contrary,

[130]

contrary, as the mourner finished his
lamentation, the fellow gave an un-
feeling lash to each of his beasts, and
set off clattering like a thousand
devils.

I called to him as loud as I could,
for heaven's sake to go slower---and
the louder I called, the more unmer-
cifully he galloped---The duce take
him and his galloping too---said I---
he'll go on tearing my nerves to
pieces till he has worked me into
a foolish passion, and then he'll go
slow, that I may enjoy the sweets
of it.

The postillion managed the point
to a miracle: by the time he had got

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[131]

to the foot of a steep hill about half
a league from Nampont,--- he had
put me out of temper with him---
and then with myself, for being so.

My case then required a different
treatment; and a good rattling gallop
would have been of real service to
me---

Then, prithee, get on---get on,
my good lad, said I.

The postillion pointed to the hill
---I then tried to return back to the
story of the poor German and his
ass--- but I had broke the clue---and
could get no more into it again,
than the postillion could into a
trot. 3