I have ever since been
importuned by letters and questions from gentlemen, and particularly
from ladies without number, touching what I had seen of the great
Now, all this is extremely tantalizing. It is like being congratulated
on the high prize when one has drawn a blank; for I have just as great
a desire as any one of the public to penetrate the mystery of that
very singular personage, whose voice fills every corner of the world,
without any one being able to tell from whence it comes. He who keeps
up such a wonderful and whimsical incognito: whom nobody knows, and
yet whom every body thinks he can swear to.
My friend, the nervous gentleman, also, who is a man of very shy,
Retired habits, complains that he has been excessively annoyed in
consequence of its getting about in his neighborhood that he is the
fortunate personage. Insomuch, that he has become a character of
considerable notoriety in two or three country towns; and has been
repeatedly teased to exhibit himself at blue-stocking parties, for no
other reason than that of being "the gentleman who has had a glimpse
of the author of Waverley."
Indeed, the poor man has grown ten times as nervous as ever, since he
has discovered, on such good authority, who the stout gentleman was;
and will never forgive himself for not having made a more resolute
effort to get a full sight of him.