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“ FOR THE AURORA.
“ HISTORY OF PETER PORCUPINE.
“ MR. BAC HE,
“As the people of America may not be informed who PETER Porcu PINE is, the celebrated manufacturer of lies, and retailer of filth, I will give you some little account of this pestiferous animal. This wretch was obliged to abscond from his darling Old England to avoid being turned off into the other world before, what he supposed, his time. It may be well imagined, that in a land of liberty, and flowing with milk and honey, his precipitate retreat could not have been owing to any offence committed against the government very honourable to himself. Gnawed by the worm that never dies, his own wretchedness would ever prevent him from making any attempt in favour of human happiness, His usual occupation at home was that of a garretscribbler, excepting a little might-business occasionally, to supply unavoidable exigencies: Grub-street did not answer his purposes, and being scented by certain tip-staffs for something more than scribbling, he took a French leave for France. His evil genius pursued him here, and as his fingers were as long as ever, he was obliged as suddenly to leave the Republic, which has now drawn forth all his venom for her attempt to do him justice. On his arrival in this country, he figured some time as a pedagogue ; but as this employment scarcely furnished him salt to his porridge, he having been literally without hardly bread to eat, and not a second shirt to his back, he resumed his old occupation of
scribbling, having little chance of success in the other employments which drove him to this country. His talent at lies and Billingsgate rhetoric, introduced him to the notice of a certain foreign agent, who was known during the Revolution by the name of traitor. This said agent has been seen to pay frequent visits to PETER. To atone for his transgressions in the mother country, as well as to get a little more bread to eat than he had been accustomed to, he enlisted in the cause of his gracious majesty. From the extreme of poverty and filth, he has suddenly sprouted into at least the appearance of better condition; for he has taken a house for the sale of his large poison, at the enormous rent of twelve hundred dollars a year, and has paid a year's rent in advance! ! The public will now be enabled to account for the overflowings of his gall against the Republic of France, and all the Republicans of this country, as well as his devotion to the cause of tyranny and of Kings. From the frequency of visits paid him by the agent already mentioned, and his sudden change of condition, secret service-money must have been liberally employed; for his zeal to make atonement to his mother country seems proportioned to the magnitude of his offence, and the guineas advanced. As this fugitive felon has crept from his hole, his quills will now become harmless; for hitherto they have only excited apprehension, because the beast who shot them was concealed. I have a number of anecdotes respecting him, that I will soon trouble you with, for the amusement of the public. This statement will convince PETER, that I know him well, and that I have only disclosed a part of the truth.”
* PAUL HEDGEHOG.”
This Paul Hedgehog I know nothing of. I can
hardly suppose that he is one of my cousins at New-York : if he be, for the honour of our family, I hope that he is a bastard. But, let Paul be what he will, he is not the only one who has attempted to sink me in the opinion of a public that has ever honoured my essays with distinguished marks of approbation. I have been well informed, that it is currently reported, that Mr. Thomas Bradford, the bookseller, “put a coat upon my “ back,” and that, when I was first favoured with his patronage, I had not a “second shirt to my ** back.” Were I to calculate upon the usual operations of truth and gratitude, I should look upon it as impossible that insinuations of this kind had ever been thrown out by Mr. Bradford, or any of his family ; but, now-a-days, in this happy age of reason and liberty, we see such extraordinary things happen in the world, that to doubt, at least, does not argue an excess of credulity or incredulity, Let the propagators of all these falsehoods be who they may, I am much obliged to them for giving me this opportunity of publishing the History of my Life and Adventures, a thing that I was determined to do, whenever a fair occasion offered, and which never could have been so well timed as at the moment when I am stepping into a situation where I may probably continue for the rest of my life. I here remember well what I said in my Obserwalions on the Emigration of Dr. Priestley. “No “ man has a right to pry into his neighbour's pri“vate concerns; and the opinions of every man “ are his private concerns, while he keeps them “ so ; that is to say, while they are confined to “ himself,
“ himself, his family, and particular friends; but,