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--THE COTTBT,

j POLITICAL. GOSSIP.

THE ARTS, LITERATURE, &e.

THE FRENCH AND ENGLISH FLEETS…

A Bad Night of it.

A Seasonable Petition.

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A Seasonable Petition. To the Sportsmen of Great Britain, whether Lords or Commoners, in or out of Parliament, anywhere as- sembled, The Humble Petition of the Grouse and other Game, now under sentence of death for purposes of sporting, Showeth, That your petitioners are about to be pur- sued by your honourable selves, and hunted, caught, shot, wounded and otherwise maltreated, to afford you some amusement. That your petitioners have, from their birth, been fed and taken care of with a view to this maltreat- ment; and, nurtured as they are, unhappily it is not in their power to escape it. That your petitioners have heard from their grand- fathers and grandmothers, who happen to have sur- vived, or from their parents, aunts, or uncles, with whom they now reside, what tortures these their relatives have received in former seasons, through being hunted by bad sportsmen, and fired at by bad shots. That your petitioners have friends who have been mangled, maimed, and mutilated, instead of being bagged, and who have suffered frightful anguish and the loss of limb or eyesight, by the clumsy way in which they have aforetime been attacked. That such agonies have specially been suffered in battues, where, in the fuss and fluster of what is called a "flush," guns have been let off without suf- ficient aim, and volleys have been fired at so many birds together, that some of them are certain to be wounded by stray shot. Your petitioners would therefore humbly pray that battue shooting be in future discontinued, as being barbarous and cruel beyond the common run of sport. And your petitioners would further pray that, as far as may be possible, all bad shots be excluded from all future shooting parties, and that sportsmen be in- structed how to j udge thsir distance rightly, and to hold their weapons straight, before they be permitted to come into the field. And your petitioners wou-ld further pray that loaders be appointed to load for all unskilful sports- mee, and, to prevent such mutilatie)n and mangling as aforesaid, that these loaders be directed to put no shot in the guns. And your petitioners would also pray that, inas- much as what is sport to you is death to them in most cases, care should be humanely taken to make that death quite certain, and, where your petitioners are picked up before dying, they be put out of their misery ere being put into the bag. And your petitioners will ever pray, &c. (Here follow the footmarks.) A CASE OF CONSCIENCE—The Chance }!0 Exchequer begs to acknowledge the receipt of the en- closed conundrum, in liquidation of unpaid contribu- tions to the imperial revenue:—Why is the collector of income duty like a carpenter P Because he is a nailer with his tin- tax. A BYE- LAW. Guard: "Smoking not allowed, gents." Swell: "O! ah! What's the fine?" Guard "A shilling, ready money, to the guard, sir. Forty shillings to the company, payable by instalments, and at your own convenience." SOMETHING IN THE C.C.C.! LINE. I say, Sam.%o, where you get de shirt studs F" "In do shop, to be sure." Yab, you just told me you hadn't no money." Dat's right." How you get dem, den ? Wel] I saw on a card in de window Cdllar Studs,' so I went in and collar'd dem." — -♦ Attempt to Upset a Hallway Train.—On Sunday the eight p.m. train from Reading, on the Beading and Reigate branch of the youth-Eastern Bail way, had reached a spot between the Earley and Wokingham Stations, when tie driver perceived a rail lying dfreci ly across the down line. He arrived at the latter station just in time to warn the driver of the down train, which was about to start thence, and the metal was consequently removed without stoing any icischief. It is supposed to have been placed there by two boys, who were seen sitting on a railway bridge near-the spot.

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