In Person I solicit no subscription - in writing I hereby
ask no favour from my reader. A book must stand or fall
by the truth contained in it.
What I wish to note is this: I was taught the English
language by the Very Reverend W. Vincent Eyre, Vice Rector
of the English College, Rome. It has cost me immense
pains to rear my English up to the mark; but I could never
master the language to perfection. Hence, now and then,
probably to the annoyance of my Readers, I could not help
the foreign idiom. Of course, a proper edition,
in Italian, will be published in Turin.
I have nothing further to say.
Prince Albert Hotel, Bakery Hill,, Ballaarat,
Anniversary of the Burning of Bentley's Eureka Hotel, 1855.
Mendacium sibi, sicut turbinis, viam augustam in urbe et orbe terrarum aperuit.
Stultus dicit in corde suo, "non est Deus."
Veritas vero lente passu passu sicut puer, tandem aliquando janunculat
Tunc justus ut palma florescit.*
[*Listen to me -
The lie, like the whirlwind, clears itself a royal road, either in town
or country, through the whole face of the earth.
The fool in his heart says, "There is no God."
The truth, however slow, step by step, like a little child, someday, at last,
finds a footpath to light.
Then the righteous flourish like a palm tree.]
I undertake to do what an honest man should do, let it thunder or rain.
He who buys this book to lull himself to sleep had better spend his money
in grog. He who reads this book to smoke a pipe over it, let him provide
himself with Plenty of tobacco - he will have to blow hard. A lover of truth -
that's the man I want - and he will have in this book the truth,
and nothing but the truth.
Facts, from the "stubborn-things" store, are here retailed and related -
contradiction is challenged from friend or foe. The observation on,
and induction from the facts, are here stamped with sincerity: I ask for no
other credit. I may be mistaken: I will not acknowledge the mistake
unless the contrary be proved.
When two boys are see-sawing on a plank, balanced on its centre, whilst
the world around them is "up" with the one it is "down" with the other.
The centre, however, is stationary. I was in the centre. I was an actor,
and therefore an eye-witness. The events I relate, I did see them pass
before me. The persons I speak of, I know them face to face. The words
I quote, I did hear them with my own ears. Others may know more or less
than I; I mean to tell all that I know, and nothing more.
Two reasons counsel me to undertake the task of publishing this work;
but a third reason is at the bottom of it, as the potent lever; and they are -