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the manufacturers now began to discover the
mistake they formerly made, and fifty of the
greatest Manchester houses took the lead in
memorializing Parliament for "compensation
to Doctor Cartwright." A committee was
appointed, much evidence was heard, and the
application was successful. In other words,
it was proved that by his inventions he had
lost between thirty and forty thousand
pounds; and Parliament, in consideration of
the public advantages they had so widely,
and at such a sacrifice diffused, voted him
ten thousand pounds. But he was nearly
seventy years old when he received it, and
there was therefore little doubt of its giving
him competence for the brief remainder of
his life.

It did so, and to the last he went on. inventing.
When he was seventy-nine he
wrote a poem, in which this manly triplet,

With mind unwearied, still will I engage,
In spite of failing vigour and of age,
Nor quit the conflict till I quit the stage,

expresses what was soberly the fact to within
a few hours of the close of his existence.
When sent in his eightieth year to Dover for
warm sea-bathing, he saved the bath-man the
work of two men by solving his difficulties
in pumping up the water; a few weeks later
he designed the model of a new Centaur
carriage; and a day or two before he died he
wrote a quite elaborate argument to a friend
on what he believed to be a new method of
working the steam-engine. He went to his
very grave inventing; and never had the
grave received a better or more ingenious
man. Whenever we celebrate our English
Worthies, therefore, let not the name of


CAME North, and South, and East, and West,
Four sages to a mountain crest.

Each vow'd to search the wide world round,
Until the Wondrous Well be found.

And here, as simple shepherds tell,
Lies clear and deep the Wondrous Well.

Before the crag they made their seat,
The polished water at their feet.

Said One, "This well is small and mean,
Too petty for a village green."

Another said, "So smooth and dumb.
From earth's deep centre can it come?"

The Third, "This water seems not rare,
Not even bright, but pale as air."

The Fourth, "A fane I look'd to see;
Where the true well is, that must be."

They rose and left the mountain crest,
One North, one South, one East, one West.

Through many seas and deserts wide,
They wander'd, thirsting, till they died.

The shepherds by the mountain dwell,
And dip their pitchers in the Wondrous Well.


WE have a fortune within our grasp. The
thing is as clear as noon-day. Twenty thousand
pounds for myself, and twenty thousand
pounds for my fellow promoter. Ralph
Augustus Rigging. People are welcome to
call us sanguine, and headstrong and foolish.
Capitalists may turn their backs upon us; but
we know that, very shortly, the proudest of
them will be at our feet. This is how we
found our fortune:

I and Rigging were having a chop in the
City one sloppy afternoon, when the market
was dull (that very morning, in fact, the
Great North and South Pole Junction shares
had dropped down to seventy-five ex. div.),
when a very quiet dull man planted himself
in the same box with us. He called for a
chop and a sausage, and particularly desired
that the sausage should be fried crisp. He
had a careworn countenance; and, when he
placed his hat upon the table, he dropped a
bundle of greasy papers into it. Little did I
think at that moment my fortune was bound
up in that grease.

Rigging soon broke cheerily into
conversation with him. He talked about the
money market. Rigging (who had, I know,
only eighteenpence in the world), chattered
airily and confidently about the glut of
money in the City, and gave long lists of
the paper done by various discount houses
whose operations he pretended to know all
about, at one and a half per cent. The
aspect of metals, the hopes of hops, the
chances of corn, the prospects of jute, the
rise in B. P. sugar gradually led, from a
discussion on the bottled-beer trade, to a few
words on the imperial pint question then
beginning to be mooted. The mention of
bottles visibly worked on the stranger's mind,
and his hand wandered instinctively towards
the greasy bundle of papers in his hat. He
paused, and then awkwardly asked whether
we had ever experienced the astonishing
inefficiency of the common corkscrew? Rigging
suggested that all the corkscrews he had
ever operated with were bad, because they
required labour to fulfil their purpose.
Indeed he was quite prepared to extend his
patronage to any new screw that would draw
a cork instantly and without effort.

This intimation threw the stranger into a
state of greater excitement. He grasped his
bundle of adipose papers; and, as he untied
them, rapidly and earnestly traced the leading
points of his career. At an early age, he
said, he saw that the world wanted an improved
corkscrew, and resolved to give the
matter his undivided attention. He resigned

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