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And said, that with his clenched teeth,
He'd seize the earth from underneath,

And drag it with him down to hell.

As he was speaking came a spasm,

And wrenched his gnashing teeth asunder;
Like one who sees a strange phantasm
He lay,—there was a silent chasm

Between his upper jaw and under.

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And yellow death lay on his face ;

And a fixed smile that was not human
Told, as I understand the case,
That he was gone to the wrong place :

I heard all this from the old woman.


Then there came down from Langdale Pike

A cloud, with lightning, wind and hail;
It swept over the mountains like
An ocean,—and I heard it strike

The woods and crags of Grasmere vale.

And I saw the black storm come

Nearer, minute after minute;
Its thunder made the cataracts dumb;
With hiss, and clash, and hollow hum,

It neared as if the Devil was in it.

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The Devil was in it:- he had bought

Peter for half-a-crown; and when The storm which bore him vanished, naught That in the house that storm had caught

Was ever seen again.

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The gaping neighbours came next day

They found all vanished from the shore: The Bible, whence he used to pray, Half scorched under a hen-coop lay;

Smashed glass-and nothing more!



The Devil, I safely can aver,

Has neither hoof, nor tail, nor sting;
Nor is he, as some sages swear,
A spirit, neither here nor there,

In nothing—yet in everything.

He is—what we are; for sometimes

The Devil is a gentleman;
At others a bard bartering rhymes
For sack; a statesman spinning crimes ;

A swindler, living as he can;

A thief, who cometh in the night,

With whole boots and net pantaloons,
Like some one whom it were not right
To mention ;-or the luckless wight,

From whom he steals nine silver spoons.

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But in this case he did appear

Like a slop-merchant from Wapping,

And with smug face, and eye severe, On every side did perk and peer

Till he saw Peter dead or napping.

He had on an upper Benjamin

(For he was of the driving schism) In the which he wrapped his skin From the storm he travelled in,

For fear of rheumatism.

VI. He called the ghost out of the corse ;

It was exceedingly like Peter,Only its voice was hollow and hoarseIt had a queerish look of course

Its dress too was a little neater.


The Devil knew not his name and lot;

Peter knew not that he was Bell: Each had an upper stream of thought, Which made all seem as it was not;

Fitting itself to all things well.

Peter thought he had parents dear,

Brothers, sisters, cousins, cronies,
In the fens of Lincolnshire;
He perhaps had found them there

Had he gone and boldly shown his

Solemn phiz in his own village;

Where he thought oft when a boy He'd clomb the orchard walls to pillage The produce of his neighbour's tillage,

With marvellous pride and joy.

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And the Devil thought he had,

'Mid the misery and confusion
Of an unjust war, just made
A fortune by the gainful trade
Of giving soldiers rations bad-

The world is full of strange delusion

That he had a mansion planned

In a square like Grosvenor-square,
That he was aping fashion, and
That he now came to Westmoreland

To see what was romantic there.

And all this, though quite ideal,-

Ready at a breath to vanish,
Was a state not more unreal
Than the peace he could not feel,

Or the care he could not banish.

XIII. After a little conversation,

The Devil told Peter, if he chose, He'd bring him to the world of fashion By giving him a situation

In his own service—and new clothes.

XIV. And Peter bowed, quite pleased and proud,

And after waiting some few days For a new livery-dirty yellow Turned up with black-the wretched fellow

Was bowled to Hell in the Devil's chaise.

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Hell is a city much like London

A populous and a smoky city; There are all sorts of people undone, And there is little or no fun done ;

Small justice shown, and still less pity.

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There is a Castles,' and a Canning,

A Cobbett, and a Castlereagh; All sorts of caitiff corpses planning All sorts of cozening for trepanning

Corpses less corrupt than they.


There is a * * *,? who has lost

His wits, or sold them, none knows which; He walks about a double ghost, | The hatred with which the Government spy Castles was regarded finds a grim reflexion in Lamb's. powerful little poem The Three Graves, of which the opening and close are as follows :

Close by the ever-burning brimstone beds
Where Bedloe, Oates and Judas hide their heads,
I saw great Satan like a Sexton stand,
With his intolerable spade in hand,
Digging three graves . ...
I asked the fiend for whom these rites were meant?
“ These graves,' quoth he, “when life's brief oil is
When the dark night comes, and they're sinking

bedwards, -I mean for Castles, Oliver, and Edwards.”—ED. ? Probably the blank should be filled by the name of Eldon.-ĚD.


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