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THE

PERCY ANECDOTES.

HUMANITY.

BEAUTY OF CLEMENCY. ALPHONSUS, King of Naples and Sicily, so celebrated in history for his clemency, was once asked why he was so favorable to all men, even to those most notoriously wicked? “Because,” answered he, "good men are won by justice; the bad by clemency." When some of his ministers complained to him on another occasion of his lenity, which they were pleased to say was more than became a prince: “ What, then," exclaimed he, “would you have lions and tigers reign ever you? Know you not that cruelty is the attribute of wild beasts—Clemency that of MAN ?"

chief lord of the place, came out and surrendered himself to the Romans. The inhabitants, enraged at his desertion, placed his wife and chil. dren whom he had left behind, in the breach which the legionaries were to mount. The Roman general hearing of this, and finding that he could not attack the city without sacrificing them, abandoned a certain conquest, and raised the siege. No sooner was this act of humanity known through Tarraconian Spain, than the inhabitants of the revolted cities strove who should first submit to him; and thus was a whole country recovered by one humane act.

SIEGE OF CAJETA. The City of Cajeta baving rebelled against Alphonsus, was invested by that monarch with a powerful army. Being sorely distressed for want of provisions, the citizens put forth all their old men, women, and children, and shut the gates upon thein. The king's ministers advised his majesty not to permit them to pass, but ļo force them back into the city; by which means he would speedily become master of it. Alphonsus, however, had too bumane a disposition to hearken to counsel, the policy of which rested on driving a helpless multitude into the jaws of fainine. He suffered them to pass unmolested; and when afterwards reproached with the delay which this produced in the siege, he feelingly said, “ I had rather be the preserver of one innocent person, than be the master of a hundred Cajetas.”

Alphonsus was not without the reward which such noble clemency merited. The citizens were 60 affected by it, that repenting of their disloyalty, they soon afterwards yielded up the city to bim of their own accord.

WAY TO LOSE AN EMPIRE. Cardinal Mazarine once observed to Don Louis de Haro, prime minister of Spain, that the humane and gentle conduct of the French government had prevented the troubles and revolts of that kingdom, and that the king had not lost a foot of land by them to that day; whereas, the inflexible severity of the Spaniards was the occasion that the subjects of that monarchy, whereever they threw off the mask, never returnes to their obedience but by the force of arms, as sutficiently appears in the example of the Hollanders, who are in the peaceable possession of many pro, vinces that not many years ago were the patri. mony of the King of Spain.

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CÆSAR.
“ This placed Cæsar among the gods."

Mar. Aurelius. Julius Cæsar was not more eminent for his valor in overcoming his enemies, that for his humane efforts in reconciling and attaching them to his dominion. In the battle of Pharsalia

he rode to and fro, calling vehemently out, “ Spare, spare the citizens !”

Nor were any killed, but such as obstinately refused to accept of life. Afi ter the battle, he gave every man on his own side leave to save any of the opposite from the list of proscription; and at no long time after he issued

TRIUMPH OF METELLUS. When Nertobrigia was invested by Q. Cæcilius Metellus, the Roman pro-consul, Rhetogenes, a

an edict, permitting all whom he liad not yet par

THE SPANISH ARMADA. doned, to return in peace to Italy, to enjoy their After the dispersion and destruction of the estates and honors. It was a common saying of Spanish Armada in 1588, Joan Comes de MediCæsar, that no music was so charming to his na, who had been general of twenty hulks, was, ears, as the requests of his friends, and the sup- with about two hundred and sixty men, driven plications of those in want of his assistance. in a vessel to Anstruther in Scotland, after suffer.

ing great hunger and cold for six or seven days.

Notwithstanding the object for which this fleet HUMANE DRIVER REWARDED.

had been sent, and the oppressive conduct of the A poor Macedonian soldier was one day lead- Spaniards to the Scottish merchants who traded ing before Alexander a mule laden with gold for with them, these men were most humanely treatthe king's use; the beast being so tired that he ed. Mr. James Melvil, the minister, told the was not able either to go or sustain the load, the Spanish officer first sent on shore, that they mule-driver took it off, and carried it himself would find nothing among them but Christianity with great difficulty a considerable way. Alex- and works of mercy. The Laird of Anstruther, ander seeing him just sinking under the burden, and a great number of the neighboring gentleand about to throw it on the ground, cried out, men, entertained the officers; and the inhabit“Friend, do not be weary yet; try and carry it ants gave the soldiers and mariners kail pottage quite through to thy tent, for it is all thy own.” and fish; the minister having addressed his flock

as Elijah did the King of Israel in Samaria,

“Give them bread and water.” HENRY IV. OF FRANCE. When Henry IV. of France was advised to attempt taking Paris by an assault before the

PETER THE GREAT. King of Spain's troops arrived to succor the The soldiers of Peter the Great, the Czar of leaguers, he absolutely protested against the Muscovy, were no sooner masters of the town of measure, on the principle of humanity. “I will Narva, than they fell to plundering and commitnot,” said he, “expose the capital to the mise- ting the most enormous barbarities. The Czar ries and borrors which must follow such an event. ran from place to place, to put a stop to the disI am the father of my people, and will follow the order and massacre. He even turned upon his example of the true mother who presented herself own victorious, but ungovernable troops, and before Solomon. I had much rather not have threatened them with instant death if they did Paris, than obtain it at the expense of humanity, not immediately desist from rapine and slaughand by the blood and death of so many innocent ter, and allow quarter to their vanquished foes. persons."

He actually killed with his own hands several Henry reduced the city to obedience without Muscovites who did not obey his orders. the loss of more than two or three burgesses, who were killed.

“ If it was in my power,” said this humane monarch, “I would give fifty thou

EMPRESS CATHERINE.
sand crowns to redeem those citizens, to have The Empress Catherine I. of Russia carried
the satisfaction of informing posterity, that I humanity to a degree seldom equalled in the bis.
kad subdued Paris without spilling a drop of tory of nations. She had proinised, that during
blood.”

her reign nobody should be put to death; and
she kept her word. She was the first sovereign

in modern times that ever showed this regard to MERCY BETTER THAN SACRIFICE.

the human species. Malefactors were now conWhen the Romans had ravaged the province demned to serve in the mines, and other public of Azazene, and seven thousand Persians were works; a regulation not less prudent than hubrought prisoners to Amida, where they suffered mane, since it renders their punishment of some extreme want, Acases, Bishop of Amida, assem- service to the state. In other countries, they bled his clergy, and represented to them the mis- only know how to put a malefactor to death ery of these unhappy prisoners. He observed, with the apparatus of an execution; but are not that as God had said, “ I love mercy better than able to prevent the execution of crimes. sacrifice,” he would certainly be better pleased with the relief of his suffering creatures, than with being served with gold and silver in their

EMPEROR JOSEPH II. churches. The clergy were of the same opinion. The Emperor of Germany, Joseph II., had The consecrated vessels were sold; and with the once a petition presented to him in behalf of proceeds, the seven thousand Persians were not a poor superannuated officer, who lived, with a only maintained during the war, but sent home family of ten children, in an indigent condition, at its conclusion with money in their pockets. at some distance from Vienna. The emperor Varenes, the Persian monarch, was so charmed inquired of several old officers whether they knew with this humane action, that he invited the this man, and received from all of them an exbishop to his capital, where he received him cellent character of him. His majesty gave no with the utmost reverence, and for his sake con- answer to the petition, but went, without any ferred many favors on the Christians

attendants, to the house of the poor officer,

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whom he found at dinner, with eleven children, upon some vegetables of his own planting. “I heard you had ten children," said the emperor, “ but here I see eleven." “ This," replied the officer, pointing to the eleventh, “is a poor orphan I found at my door; and though I bare done all I could to engage some persons, more opulent than myself, to provide for him, all my endeavors have proved in vain; I have therefore shared my small portion with him, and brought him up as my own child.” The emperor admired the noble and generous humanity of this indigent man, to whom he discovered himself, and said, “I desire that all these children may be my pensioners, and that you will continue to give them examples of virtue and honor. I grant you 100 florins per annum for each of them, and 200 florins additional to your pension. Go to-morrow to my treasurer, where you will receive the first quarter's payment, with a commission of lieutenancy for your eldest son. Continue to be your children's careful tutor, and I will henceforth be their father.” The old man, with all his family, threw himself at the feet of his sovereign, which he bedewed with tears of gratitude. The emperor shed tears himself, and after giving some small presents to the children, retired. When he joined his retinue, he said to Count Colloredo, “I thank God for this day's favor. He hath guided me to discov. er a virtuous man in obscurity.”

mittee of Sequestration sitting at Waltham in Essex. He got into conversation with them, and was much commended for his powers of memory. “'T is true, gentlemen," observed Mr. Fuller, “ that fame has given me the report of being a memorist; and if you please, I will give you a specimen of it.” The gentlemen gladly acceded to the proposal; and laying aside their business, requested Mr. F. to begin. “Gentlemen," said he, "you want a specimen of my memory, and you shall have a good one. Your worships have thought fit to sequestrate a poor but honest parson, who is my near neighbor, and commit him to prison. The unfortunate man has a large family of children; and as his circumstances are but indifferent, if you wil have the goodness to release him out of prison, I pledge myself never to forget the kindness while I live.” It is said that the jest had such an influence on the committee, that they immediately restored the poor clergyman.

EMPEROR FRANCIS II. One arm of the Danube separates the city of Vienna from a large suburb, called Leopold-stadt. A thaw inundated this suburb, and the ice carried away the bridge of communication with the capital. The population of Leopold-stadt began to be in the greatest distress for want of provisions. A number of boats were collected and loaded with bread; but no one felt bardy enough to risk the passage, which was rendered extremely dangerous by large bodies of ice. Francis the Second, who was then emperor, stood at the water's edge; he begged, exhorted, threatened, and promised the highest recompenses, but all in vain; whilst on the other shore, kis subjects famishing with hunger, stretched forth their hands, and supplicated relief. Their monarch's sensibility at length got the better of his prudence; he leaped singly into a boat loaded with bread, and applied himself to the oars, exclaiming, “ Never shall it be said that I made no effort to save those who would risk their all for me.” The example of the sovereign, sudden as electricity, inflamed the spectators, who threw themselves in crowds into the boats. They encountered the sea successfully, and gained the suburb, just when their intrepid monarch, with the tear of pity in his eye, held out the bread he had conveyed across at the risk of his life.

GEORGE BUCHANAN. This illustrious scholar, compelled to fly from his own country by the blood-seeking animosity of a priestly cabal, whose vices he had made the theme of his satire, sought refuge and protection under Henry VIII. of England. His appeal to that monarch was couched in terms of great pathos and elegance. “ Look not," said the poet, “with an unrelenting countenance upon the humble advances of a man whose soul is devoted to your service; one who, a beggar, a vagrant, and an exile, has endured every species of misfortune which a perfidious world can inflict. A savage host of inveterate enemies pursues him, and the palace of his sovereign resounds with their menaces. Over mountains covered in snow, and valleys flooded with rain, I come a fugitive to the Athenian altar of Mercy, and exhausted by calamities, cast myself at your feet.Alas ! London was not the Athens the fugitive sought, nor Henry the Pericles, whose generosity was to succor him. But who can wonder, that after sacrificing to the axe that beauty on which he once reposed with delight, neither the misfortunes of greatness, nor the eloquence of genius, should have been able to make the least impression on the heart of the savage Henry?

THE WIDOW AND BISHOP. A poor widow, encouraged by the famed generosity of an ecclesiastic of great eminence, came into the hall of his palace with her only daughter, a beautiful girl of fifteen years of age. The good divine discerning marks of extraordinary modesty in their demeanor, engaged the widow to tell her wants freely. She, blushing and in tears, told bim that she owed five crowns for rent; which ber landlord threatened to force her to pay immediately, unless she would consent to the ruin of ber child, who had been educated in virtue; and sbe entreated that the prelate would interpose his sacred authority,

MEMORY TO DO GOOD. Thomas Fuller, so celebrated for his great memory, bad once occasion to attend on a Com.

This poor

till by industry she might be enabled to pay her any one that bad received any injury went and cruel oppressor. The bishop, moved with ad- rang, and the king assembled the wise men chomiration of the woman's virtue, bid her be of sen for the purpose, that justice might be done. courage; he immediately wrote a note, and put- It happened, that after the bell had been up a ting it into the hands of the widow, said, “Go long time, the rope was worn out, and a piece to my steward with this paper, and he will give of wild vine was made use of to lengthen it. Now you five crowns to pay your rent.”

there was a knight of Atri, who had a noble charwoman, after a thousand thanks to her generous ger which was become unservicable through age, benefactor, hastened to the steward, who imme. so that to avoid the expense of feeding him, he diately presented her with fifty crowns. This turned him looše upon the common. The horse, she refused to accept; and the steward, unable driven by hunger, raised his month to the vine to prevail on her to take it, agreed to return to munch it, and pulling it the bell rang.

The with her to his master; who, when informed of judges assembled to consider the petition of the the circumstance, said, “It is true I made a horse, which appeared to demand justice. They mistake in writing fifty crowns, and I will rec- decreed, that the knight whom he had served tify it.” On which he wrote another note; in his youth, should feed him in his old age; and turning to the poor woman whose honesty a sentence which the king confirmed under a had a second time brought her before him, said, | heavy penalty. “ So much candor and virtue deserves a recompense: here I have ordered you five hundred crowns; what you can spare of it, lay up as a

RIGHTS OF HOSPITALITY. marriage portion for your daughter."

Dr. Johnson, in his tour through North Wales, passed two days at the seat of Colonel Middleton

of Gwynnagag. While he remained there, the CHARLES V. OF FRANCE.

gardener caught a hare amidst some potatoe The last words of this patriotic monarch are plants, and brought it to his master, then

engamemorable for the noble moral for kings, which ged in conversation with the doctor. An order they contain. “ I have aimed at justice,” said was given to carry it to the cook. As soon as he to those around him; “but what king can be Johnson heard this sentence, he begged to have the certain that he has always followed it? Perhaps animal placed in his arms; which was no sooner I have done much evil of which I am ignorant. done, than approaching the window, then half Frenchmen ! who now hear me, I address my- open, he restored the hare to her liberty, shout. self to the Supreme Being and to you. I find ing after her to accelerate her speed. “ What that kings are happy but in this that they have you done?” cried the Colonel; “ why, have the power of doing good.

doctor, you have robbed my table of a delicacy, perhaps deprived us of a dinner.” “So much

the better, sir,” replied the humane champion THE BEGGING NUN.

of a condemned hare; “for if your table is to be The late Mrs. General Lascelles, when more supplied at the expense of the laws of hospitality, celebrated as Miss Catley the singer, was en- I envy not the appetite of him who eats it. This, treated to contribute to the relief of a widow, || sir, is not a hare feræ naturæ, but one which whose husband had left her in a very distressed had placed itself under your protection; and savsituation. She gave her a guinea, but desired to age indced must be that man, who does not know the poor woman's address; and in three make his hearth an asylum for the confiding days called upon her with near fifty pounds, stranger.” which she had in the interim collected at a masquerade in the character of a Beguine (a

BONAPARTE. begging Nun).

Monsieur le compte de Polignac had been

raised to honor by Bonaparte; but, from some un• HOW TO PRIZE GOOD FORTUNE.

accountable motive, betrayed the trust bis patron In the year preceding the French revolution, || reposed in him. As soon as Bonaparte discovera servant girl in Paris had the good fortune to ed the persidy, he ordered Polignac to be put ungain a prize of fifteen hundred pounds in the lot- der arrest. Next day he was to have been tried, tery. She immediately waited on the parish and in all probability would have been condemnpriest, and generously put two hundred louis d'ors ed, as his guilt was most undoubted. In the ininto his hands, for the relief of the most indigent terim, Madame Polignac solicited and obtained and industrious poor in the district; accompany- an audience of the emperor. “I am sorry, Ma. ing the donation with this admirable and just | dame, for your sake," said he, “ that your bus. observation, " Fortune could only have been band has been implicated in an affair which is kind to me, in order that I might be kind to marked throughout with such deep ingratitude.”

“ He may not have been so guilty as your majesty supposes,” said the countess. “Do you know

your husband's signature ?” asked the emperor, PETITION OF THE HORSE.

as he took a letter from his pocket, and presente In the days of John, King of Atri, an ancient ed it to her. Madame de Polignac hastily city of Abruzzo, there was a bell put up, which ll glanced over the letter, recognized the writing,

others.”

and fainted. As soon as she recovered, Bonaparte, offering her the letter, said, “ Take it; it is the only legal evidence against your husband; there is a fire beside you." Madame de P. eagerly seized the important document, and in an instant committed it to the flames. The life of Polignac was saved; his honor it was beyond the power even of the generosity of an emperor to redeem.

When the Pegasus arrived at Newfoundland, the prince met with another equally striking occasion of evincing his benevolence. He accidentally saw a poor widow, who was burthened with a family of fourteen children, with scarcely any means of supporting them. Affected by their situation, the benevolent tar, after surveying the family group, made choice of one boy, whose appearance pleased him, and treated him in the same manner as he had done the other object of his patronage.

During the whole of his royal highness' voyages abroad, these two little fortunates received from him all the attention of a parent. They always stood at the prince's back when he dined, and were never permitted to do anytbing in the least degree servile.

When the prince returned to Plymouth, he completed his paternal kindness, by sending both boys to school, and making every necessary provision for rearing them in a manner which might enable them to show themselves worthy of so noble a benefactor.

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LAVALETTE. When Lavalette had been liberated from prison by his wife, and was flying with Sir Robert Wilson to the frontier, the postmaster examined his countenance, and recognized him through his disguise. A postillion was instantly sent off at full speed. M. de Lavalette urged his demand for borses. The postmaster had just quitted the house, and given orders that none should be supplied. The travellers thought themselves discovered, and saw no means of escaping, in a country with which they were unacquainted; they resolved upon defending themselves, and selling their lives dearly. The postmaster at length returned unattended; and then addressing himself to M. de Lavalette, he said, You have the appearance of a man of honor; you are going to Brussels, where you will see M. de Lavalette; deliver him these two hundred louis d'ors, which I owe him, and which he is no doubt in want of ; ” and without waiting for an answer, be threw the money into the carriage and withdrew, saying, “ You will be drawn by my best borses; a postillion is gone to provide relays for the continuance of your journey.'

DUKE OF ORLEANS, REGENT. The Duke of Orleans, on being appointed Regent of France, insisted on possessing the power of pardoning. “ I have no objection," said he, “ to have my hands tied from doing harm, but I will have them free to do good.”

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THE MAN OF ROSS.
" But all our praises why should lords engross?
Rise, honest muse, and sing The Man of Ross."

Pope. Mr. John Kyrl, so celebrated by Mr. Pope for his active benevolence as the Man of Ross, was a bachelor, possessed of no more than five hundred pounds a-year. “ Blush, grandeur, blush; proud courts, withdraw

your blaze!
Ye little stars, hide your diminished rays.
Behold the market place, with poor o'erspread,
The Man of Ross divides the weekly bread;
He feeds yon alms-house, neat, but void of state,
Where age and want sit smiling at the gate.
Himn portion'd maids, apprentic'd orphans blest,
The young who labor, and the old who rest.
Is any sick? the Man of Ross relieves,
Prescribes, atiends, the med'cine makes and gives
Is there a variance? enter but his door,
Balked are the courts, and contest is no more

MASSACRE OF THE HUGONOTS. When Catherine of Medicis had persuaded Charles IX. to massacre all the protestants in France, orders were sent to the governors of the different provinces, to put the Hugonots to death in their respective districts. One catholic governor, whose memory will ever be dear to humanity, had the courage to disobey the cruel mandate. “ Sire,” said he, in a letter to his sovereign, “ I have too much respect for your majesty, not to persuade myself that the order I have received must be forged; but if, which God forbid, it should be really the order of your majesty, I have too much respect for the personal characer of my sovereign to obey it."

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DUKE OF CLARENCE. When his royal highness was on the eve of sailing for the first time as commander from Plymouth, he was accosted in the dock-yard by a poor boy, who did not know who the prince way, and who supplicated that he would give him a birth in his ship, to save him from starving. The prince being pleased with the countenance of the supplicant, told him to go on board the Pegasus, and say the captain had sent him. His highness afterwards ordered him to be completely clothed and equipped in the habit of a midshipman, and to be rated as such.

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GAINSBOROUGH. One evening when this great genius, and worthy man, was going to the play in Bath, he was shown by a gentleman who accompanied him, a letter received from a female, a stranger to them both, whose sole stay in the world had suddenly died, without leaving her any sort of pension. She depicted her misfortune and misery in moving terms. Mr. Gainsborough appeared agitated, and instead of going to the play, went home, and sent his friend the following letter, enclosing a bank note.

My dear Sir, I could not go to the play till I had relieved my mind, by sending the enclosed

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