Bickerton, added to her own simple and quiet manners, so propitiated the landlady of the Swan in her favour, that the good dame procured her the convenient accommodation of a pillion and post-horse then returning to Tuxford, so that she accomplished, upon the second day after leaving York, the longest journey she had yet made.
When I dismounted from my post-horse, I hastened to my father's apartment. He was traversing it with an air of composed and steady deliberation, which even my arrival, although an only son unseen for four years, was unable to discompose. I threw myself into his arms. He was a kind, though not a fond father, and the tear twinkled in his dark eye, but it was only for a moment.
What right has any pedant, because he thinks proper to vex and entangle his own brain with doubts, to force his gloomy dogmas upon me? Let those who love sack-cloth wear it. Must I be made miserable, because an over-curious booby bewilders himself in inquiry, and galls his conscience, till, like the wrung withers of a battered post-horse, it shrinks and shivers at the touch of a fly's foot?
You may refer to the generally rotten appearance of the structure, and point in particular to the great holes sufficient to engulf half a post-horse. You may have your doubts as to whether in this irreligious age Providence will intervene specially for your benefit; but your yamstchik, who has more faith or fatalism, leaves you little time to solve the problem.
"Stop, Miss Grace," suddenly said Jonathan, for her beauty and eloquence transformed the cottager into a lady in his eyes, and no wonder; "pray, stop a minute, Miss please to take a seat; I sha'n't be gone an instant." And the good-hearted fellow, whose eyes had long been very red, broke away at a gallop; but he was back again almost as soon as gone, panting like a post-horse.
If any lady or gentleman, on perusal of the present lines, will take any very tall post-horse with his traces hanging about his legs, and will conduct him by the bearing-rein into the heart of a country dance of a hundred and fifty couples, that lady or gentleman will then, and only then, form an adequate idea of the extent to which that post-horse will tread on his conductor's toes.
My doom was irrevocable; and despair itself seemed to have lost its charm: the animation, the vigour, of misery was gone. I was reduced to an inevitable post-horse kind of endurance; and had only now to be thankful if I might be permitted to exist.
I shall include the product of the tax which was laid in the last war, and which will make the evidence more conclusive, if it shall afford the same inference: I allude to the Post-Horse duty, which shows the personal intercourse within the kingdom, as the Post-Office shows the intercourse by letters both within and without.
When he arrived within ten leagues of Paris, he put on an enormous pair of jack-boots, mounted a post-horse, and arrived in the court of the palace cracking his whip. If this had been real impatience, and not charlatanism, he would have taken horse twenty leagues from Paris."
Several other delegates addressed the meeting, and various plans were discussed; but it invariably turned out, upon investigation, that the change would only benefit the class of animals by whom it was proposed. A post-horse was of opinion, that the true remedy lay in decreasing the amount of speed, and shortening the spaces between milestones.