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156 TYLNEY HALL.

that every man of property carried a gun, took out a licence,

and shot over his own grounds. As his son had formed a

sort of acquaintance with the Squire, he pitched upon the

latter as the person he would request to put him, as he called

" "

it, through his exercise ; and his present errand was to

see whether Ned would undertake the instruction of a pupil

so adult.

After half an hour's walk he came in sight of the chim-

neys of the cottage, the refractory one towering a yard

above the others, with a zigzag pipe, wearing a tin gipsy-

hat. Another specimen of Ned's mechanical ingenuity

confronted the visiter at the very threshold ; for, on lifting

the knocker, a small spring panel immediately revolved,

and exhibited the words, " Not at Home." On the fall

of the knocker the inscription disappeared.

"By jingo," exclaimed the citizen, "it's not a bad

plan, and particularly if you've got a decidedly serious servant,

that objects to tell tarradiddles about your ins and

outs. If the master's abroad though, there can't be any

harm in one's stepping in to sit down and rest a bit, for I

don't feel myself quite such a good walker, now I'm a man

"

of property, as I was when I used to trudge on errands !

As the knocker, however, produced only the same inti-

mation, he looked carefully about for a bell-handle, and at

last discovered a little brass knob, whereat he gave a pull ;

but, instead of producing a ring, it unlatched the door,

which immediately flew wide open of its own accord; a

very necessary contrivance of the Squire's, in order to

obtain access to his own premises, for his indoor establishment

consisted only of an old housekeeper, who was so deaf

that she would not have answered the summons of a Great

Tom of Lincoln. Accordingly, after two or three fruitless

halloos, Twigg entered the passage, and, treading as cau-

tiously as if he expected at every step to let off a steel trap

or a spring gun, he came to a door on the right, which stood

open, and allowed him a glimpse of the very thing he

wanted, a settee.

On entering, he found himself in a circular room, pano-

ramically painted, as if in continuation of the prospect

which was seen through the one window, and so interesting

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