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prisoner to have knives, or scissors, or any instrument that will cut; and a hundred pounds would not have tempted the turnkey, (the man who brought our food) to accommodate us with even four ounces of rope; while, at a moderate computation, it would require at least fourteen hundred feet, besides two ladders, one of wood, from twenty to five and twenty feet long, and one of rope, about one hundred and eighty feet. Several strong iron gratings must also be removed from the chimney; and in a single night, a wall several feet thick must be bored through, not more than ten or fifteen feet from where a sentinel was always placed.

All these things must be provided, and done; and we had nothing to provide or do them with, but our two hands. Nor were these the only difficulties. The wooden ladder, and the rope ladder, with two hundred and fifty rundles, each of them a foot long and an inch thick, together with many other prohibited things, must be concealed in the room, notwithstanding that the officers, accompanied by the turnkey, came, regularly, several times during the week, to examine the apartment. However, I had set my mind upon the enterprise, and had mentioned it frequently to my companion, who was shrewd and intelligent, but who always pronounced it to be utterly mipossible. His reasons for thinking so, only made me the more determined to persist.

It is necessary to have been a prisoner in the Bastille, to know what is the condition of one. Imagine yourself doomed to pass ten years in one room, without either seeing or speaking to the captive who occupies the chamber overhead. Frequently a husband, a wife, and their children, have all been prisoners at the same time, and remained so for years, without either knowing that the other was there. Nothing that happens beyond the walls is mentioned to you. The King dies-ministers are changed--not a syllable is breathed in your presence. The officers, the surgeon, the turnkey, never utter more than "good day," "good evening," "do you want anything?" This is all that is heard.

There is a chapel where mass is performed every day, and on Sundays and festival days, three times. In this chapel there are five small closets, where they place those prisoners who have permission to attend the mass. Upon the elevation of the host, they are withdrawn: so that the priest even never sees the face of a prisoner, nor does the prisoner ever see anything but the back of the priest M. Berryer had the kindness to allow both me and my companion to hear mass; and the same permission was granted to the prisoner above us, that is, to No. 3, of the Tower called la Comté, which is the first, on your right, as you enter the Bastille. I had remarked that this prisoner never made the least noise; never moved either his chair or table; did not even cough. He attended mass on the same days that we did, coming down before, and returning after, us. My mind being constantly occupied with the thought of escaping, I told my companion that I wished very much to see the room of this prisoner, as we returned, and begged him to assist me. I bade him fold his tooth-pick case in his pocket handkerchief, and when we got to the top of the second landing place, to contrive that in pulling out his handkerchief the tooth-pick case should fall down stairs; and to be sure and make it roll as far as he could. He was then to request the turnkey, (who always accompanied us,) to go and pick it up for him. It was done. I, who was in advance of my companion, immediately darted up the other flight of stairs, drew the bolts, and opened the door of No. 3. I examined the height of the

*The reader must bear in mind that when these memoirs were written, the Bastille was still standing. M. de Latude, however, lived to witness its destruction, and survived that event many years. A French writer who saw and conversed with him in December, 1801, says, "he was then seventy-six years old, strong and active for his age; he had before him, on a table, all his tools and musical instruments, and would tell the story of his wonderful escape from the Bastille, in a spirited and interesting manner."

ceiling, and saw that it was not more than nine or ten feet. I shut the door; I had time to measure the height of one, two, and three steps of the staircase; I counted them also, from this room to ours; and making a calculation, found there was a difference of about five feet. As the ceiling was not vaulted with stone, I easily inferred that it could not be five feet thick, and concluded that it was double.

I now spoke to my companion. "Do not despair," said I. "A little patience, and a little courage, and I'll undertake that we regain our liberty.— Listen. This is my calculation, (presenting my paper to him.) If it should turn out as I expect, that there is a hollow space in the ceiling between the third and fourth rooms, where we can conceal the ropes, and all the other materials that we shall want, I pledge myself that our escape is certain."— "But," replied my companion drily," before we conceal our ropes we must have them; and what is more, it is impossible that we should be able to obtain even ten feet of cord." "As to the cord," I rejoined, "you need not trouble yourself about them; for in my trunk there, which lies before you, there are more than a thousand feet."

He looked at me steadily, and then said, " Truly, I think you have taken leave of your senses. I know, just as well as you do, what is in your trunk, for I have seen it open often enough; and I know it does not contain a single foot of cord; yet you say there are above a thousand feet."

"Yes," I replied: " in that trunk there are twelve dozen shirts, six dozen pair of silk stockings, twelve dozen pair of thread under stockings, five dozen pair of drawers, and six dozen towels. Now, by unravelling my shirts, my stockings, my drawers, my towels, my under stockings, we shall have wherewith to make more than a thousand feet of cord."

"That is true," said he, "but what have we with which to wrench out these iron bars across the chimney? For, with nothing, we can do nothing; we have only our hands; and we cannot create implements."

"My friend," I replied, "the hand is the instrument by which all instruments are made: and men who know how to work with their heads, are never destitute of resources. Look," I continued, "at these two iron hinges which support our table; I will make a handle for each; by sharpening them on our stone wall I will give an edge to them; we have a steel; by breaking it thus, in less than two hours, I will convert it into a good pen-knife, with which we can make the handles; this pen-knife will also be useful for a thousand other purposes: and thus, with these two hinges, I pledge my life that we succeed in removing all those iron bars."

The rest of the day, we talked over our scheme; and the moment we had supped, we tore off a hinge from the table, with which we succeeded in removing one of the stones from the wall. We then began to dig. In six hours we had excavated a considerable depth, and had the satisfaction of discovering that there were two roofs, or ceilngs, about three feet distant from each other. We now considered our ultimate success certain. We replaced the stone so carefully, that it had not the appearance of having been moved. Next day, I broke our steel, and made a small knife of it, with which we cut two handles for the hinges. We then sharpened their edges. Afterwards, we took two of the shirts, and began to unravel them; that is, after unpicking the seams and hems, we drew out, one by one, the threads of which they were composed, We tied these threads together, and formed them into skeins of equal lengths; when these skeins were finished we divided them into two portions. There were fifty threads in each, joined together so as to give a length of sixty feet. We then twisted them tightly, and made a rope about fifty-five feet long; and with the wood which was brought to us for our fire, we formed twenty rounds, and in the end contrived a very good rope ladder of twenty feet.

We next commenced the more difficult task, of removing the iron bars from the chimney. For this purpose, we fastened our rope ladder, by a weight, to one end of the iron bars, round which it easily clung, and by

means of the rounds, we kept ourselves suspended, while we were working at the clamps and fastenings of these iron bars. In less than six months, we succeeded in loosening the whole of them; after which, they were replaced so as to be ready for removal whenever we wanted. This was severe labour. My God! We never came down from our work, without having our hands lacerated and bleeding, and the position in which we were forced to stand, while up the chimney, was so painful, that it was impossible for either of us to continue there an hour, without one relieving the other.

This work completed, the next thing to be done was, to construct a wooden ladder of twenty feet, to get up from the moat or ditch, upon the parapet, where the sentinels were posted, and thence to enter the governor's garden. Every day they brought us several clumps of wood for our fire. This wood was chopped into pieces of about eighteen or twenty inches long. We could not saw these logs with our two hinges. In less than six hours, with the assistance of the remaining portion of the steel, I made an excellent saw out of an iron candlestick which we had, with which, in about a quarter of an hour, I triumphantly sawed in two a log as thick as my thigh. With the pen-knife, the hinge, and this saw, we succeeded in fashioning these logs so as to make good progress with our ladder; and as the successive portions of it were completed, we concealed them between the two ceilings. We also, with the simple tools I have described, made a sector, a square, compasses, &c.

As the officers and turnkey frequently entered our room during the day, at times when we least expected them, it was necessary, not only that we should conceal our implements, but the smallest portions of chips, shavings, or whatever else might lead to the discovery of what we were about. We also agreed to give certain arbitrary names to the things themselves. Thus, we called our saw, Faun; the compasses, Anubis; the iron hinges, TubalCain; the woodden ladder, Jacob; a rope, a Dove; the space between the ceilings, Polyphemus, in allusion to the fabulous cavern, &c. &c. When any one came into the room, the one nearest the door called to the other. TubalCain, Faun, Anubis, Dove, &c. He understood what was meant, and dropt his handkerchief, or a towel, upon whatever required to be concealed. We were incessantly on our guard.

When our wooden ladder was completed, and put to the test, we stowed it away in Polyphemus; and then we set to work to make the ropes for our great ladder, which was to be one hundred and eighty feet long. We took to pieces our shirts, towels, drawers, silk stockings, in fact every thing which we could subject to the process. As we finished successive portions of it, they, too, were consigned to Polyphemus; and when the whole was finished, we put it together in a single night. It was as white as snow: and I dare venture to say, that a professed rope-maker would not have been ashamed of the workmanship.

All round the Bastille there is an entablature which projects three or four feet beyond the walls. We had no doubt, that at each step we took in descending, the ladder would sway to and fro; and, at such a moment, the strongest head might fail a man. To prevent either of us from being dashed to pieces if we fell, we made a second rope, of three hundred and sixty feet long, or twice the height of the towers. This rope was to be passed through a sort of pulley, which we had contrived, without any wheel, that it might not get entangled between it and the side. By means of this rope, each of us, whether at the top or the bottom of the tower, could support his companion in the air, and prevent him from descending too rapidly. Besides these two ropes, we also made some others of shorter lengths, in order that we might be provided for any unforeseen emergency.

When all these ropes were finished, we measured them, and there were fourteen hundred feet. We had still to make two hundred rounds, for the great rope-ladder, and the wooden-ladder; and to prevent those for the former from making any noise against the walls, as we descended, we covered

them with the lining of our robes-de-chambre, our waistcoats, &c. We worked nearly eighteen months, night and day, in preparing these various materials. The reader has seen what was required to enable us to get through our chimney on to the platform of the Bastille; to descend from that into the moat; to ascend from the moat to the parapet and thus gain the governor's garden; and from this garden to descend, once more, by means of our wooden-ladder, or some other, into the large foss of the Porte St. Antoine, where we should achieve our liberty. But we also required, in order to ensure our success, a dark, stormy night; and here a fatal difficulty was to be feared. It might rain, perhaps, from five o'clock in the evening till nine or ten, and then the night might become calm and clear. In that case the sentinels would be pacing the walls from one post to another; and not only would all our labour, and materials, be thrown away, but, to complete the climax of our misery, we should, upon being discovered, be cast into a dungeon, and, so long as the Marchioness de Pompadour lived, be the victims of the most horrible treatment. This apprehension tormented us grievously; but, when every thing was prepared, we e'en resolved to attempt the perilous enterprise, come what might. Accordingly, we did so, on the 25th February, 1756, notwithstanding that the Seine had overflowed its banks, and that there must consequently be from three to four feet water in each of the two moats.

(To be continued.)




A. God bless me! How do you do? I have not seen you this age, B. No; it's a long time since we last met. Something like five or six years, I think?

A. Ay, that it is at least. And how have you been, and where have you been, and what have you been about all that time?

B. Oh, I don't know; doing the best I could to keep things smooth and comfortable. But how has the world used you?

A. Much as usual. I have had my ups and downs. But in the long-run I have contrived to keep the right end of the rope, thank God.

B. That's all well. (A pause.)

A. This is fine weather.

B. Very. (Another pause.)

A. I don't think you are quite so stout as you were.

B. No, I am considerably thinner-(patting himself), but you have picked up flesh a little-(poking his friend).

A. Do you think so? (Another pause).

B. How are you all at home?

A. Not so well as I could wish. Mrs. A. has been laid up with the influenza, and I am afraid the babby is going to have the cholera.

B. Dear me ! hope not.

A. Well, I am glad to see you. Where do you live now?

B. At Bridge. I wish you would call some day when you are passing. It is the third door on the right hand. You can't mistake it; it is the only house with a mahogany-coloured door and a brass knocker.

A. I will; and I hope you won't pass through Littlebourne without stopping to say how do you do? Good morning. I am glad to see you looking

so well.

B. Good morning. Remember me to Mrs. A., and I hope she will soon get better. (They shake hands.)

A. By-the-by, what has become of old Major Hewson? The last I heard of him was about two years ago, when he was living somewhere near Ashford.




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B. Yes; he never held up his head after that affair of his son, George. I suppose you heard of it.

A. Not a word.

B. You surprise me. It was in all the papers at the time.

A. What was it?

B. (Making a sign under his left ear, and pointing upwards.)

A. Good God! Hung himself?

B. (Shaking his head again.) Worse than that. It was done for him. A. What do you mean?

B. You know George was a gay young man, fond of expense and show, and (I am afraid) of women and the gaming-table. The major's fortune would not permit of his allowing enough to pay for all this, and getting acquainted with a set of black-legs, they made a tool and a victim of him. He was taken up for forgery, and It broke his father's heart.

A. Poor Major Hewson! Poor fellow! I remember he was particularly fond of George, and proud of him too; but I confess I always thought him partial, for his brother Edward was every way superior to him-more the gentleman in his manners, and a much sounder head. Is he still managing his little farm at Chilham.

B. I have not heard anything of Edward Hewson since that unfortunate affair of his wife

A. His wife his wife-(musing.) Now you mention it, I seem to have a sort of recollection of having heard something about Mrs. Hewson. She was thrown from her horse, I think, and broke her collar-bone.

B. Oh, that was before they went to live at Chilham. No-what I allude to happened about the time of the major's death. She ran away with a young fellow whom she met at the assemblies at Margate, and who turned out to be nothing more than a linen-draper's foreman.

A. The devil! She was a pretty little woman.

B. Yes, pretty enough—but a jade.

A. I forget whether you ever met Mr. Smith at my house?

B. Oh yes, several times-a lusty man, and wore powder.

He was

A. No, that was James Smith, the hop-factor, in the Borough. upset in a boat the other day, going to Greenwich, and drowned. The Smith I mean, was short, thin, pale-faced, and had a remarkable cast in his eye. B. To be sure I have met him; he played an excellent game of chess. A. The same. Well, his wife served him the same trick as our friend Hewson's, only last week: eloped with an attorney's clerk, took upwards of two hundred pounds, and set off for the continent. Smith traced them to Boulogne, but lost scent of them there, and gave up the pursuit.

B. Wasn't that Smith the brother-in-law of Frank Sowerby?

A. Yes. Why do you ask?

B. Because I see his name is in the Gazette of last night.

A. You don't say so!

B. Francis Sowerby, of Milk-street, Cheapside, warehouseman-if it's the same.

A. (Snapping his fingers.) Then I'm done out of about seventy pounds,

as clean as a whistle!

B. I am sorry for that-but there he is among the bankrupts, safe enough. A. Mine's a particularly hard case. That old rascal (I can call him no better) came to me one morning, about a month ago, while I was at breakfast, and asked if I could lend him a hundred pounds for a few hours. I did not happen to have so much in the house; and so far I may consider myself fortunate, for if I had had five hundred, and he had wanted it, such was my opinion of his stability, I should not have hesitated a moment.However, what I had I gave him; I think it was near seventy pounds. I know it was above sixty; and, like a fool as I was, I must needs press him


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