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To the Editor of the Bee.



I AM forry I have it in my power to affure you, that the story which gave rife to the following lines, is not fictitious, but a real fact, that happened in the Island of Jamaica, not many years ago. The man who perpetrated the deed, a Scotchman too, is, I believe, alive in that Island at this time. It was the practice of this from deliberate system, to work out his flaves with hard labour; and when the doctor reported that they were no longer able to work, nor any hopes remained of their recovery, they were ordered to be carried immediately to the launch, an inclined plane made of several boards fastened together, whofe lower extremity pointed over the edge of a precipice feveral hundred feet in height, that hung over a deep ravine on his plantation. This was, in general, a pretty certain launch into eternity, though, in the prefent cafe, it failed. Noak had been declared by the Doctor incapable of any further fervice, and was ordered, as ufual, to the launch. The poor fellow begged hard that he might not be carried to the launch, as he faid he was not yet dead-But nothing could prevail with his inhuman mafter. Like his fellows, he must take his fate; but, by a kind of miracle, he efcaped with life, and made a fhift to crawl away from the foot of the rocks. Some of his black friends fell in with him, had compaffion on him, and ufed means for his recovery. Some time after, the mercilefs wretch who had caufed him to be launched over the precipice, was fome what furprized at feeing his flave, whom he had believed to be in the other world, begging in one of the streets of a neighbouring town; but had the modeft affurance to wish to reclaim him as his property. The poor fellow's ftory, however, prevailed, even in the West Indies, to make all agree in thinking he

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had got a full discharge from his fervice: And the tyrant
owner feeing the general indignation rifing high against
him, was glad, at length, to make his efcape from the
mob as quickly as poffible, though no public vengeance
overtook him.

If I fhall be told this ftory cannot be true, because it is contrary to the laws provided for the fafety of the negroes, I anfwer, that I difpute not about the law; but that the fact is literally true, I do maintain, and am ready to prove it upon the most undeniable evidence, fhould it be neceffary-And this I aver, though I am no friend to the abolition of the flave-trade.

The negroes themselves made up a ballad in their own way, which they used to fing at their public merry makings, the chorus of which was,

Maffa, Maffa, no launch,

Maffa, no dead yet,-or fomething to that purpose, which I am forry I did not then take down. Thefe gave rife to the following lines:

M. H.

THOUGH, Sir, I obferve you avoid faying any thing that
might give rife to jangling difputes, yet your having
inferted a little piece, expreffive of the fentiments of an
Indian warrior, makes me hope you may also admit
this story of a Weft India flave, which happened lately
to fall in my way. I do not pretend to judge of its
merit, but leave that to you; and I am, Sir, respectfully,



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The Poor Negro Beggar's Petition and Complaint.

O MASSA, poor negro! God Almighty you blefs:
O Maffa, poor negro in utmost diftrefs.

Much beating, much lashing, poor Noffak endur'd;
No toil, no fubmiffion, good ufage infur'd.
Provifions were bad; our allowance was fmall;
Hard work; no relief for poor Noffak at all.
Sick, fick, and not able to stand to the hoe;
"Given up by the doctor, to the launch he must go,"
Said my mafter, unfeeling, and sent me away,
Though I pleaded, intreated," O let me but stay,
"O Maffa, no launch, me no dead, me no dead,
"No launch, me grow well again, Massa," I said.
He was deaf to nay cries;-fo dragg'd to the rock,
From the plank I was launched, the terrible fhock!


got faft afleep, but awaking again,

Alas! I awoke to much forrow and pain;

My legs they were broke,-all my body much bruif'd;

No hope; even death to relieve me refus'd;

Dry bones of poor negroes were scatter'd around;

Like me they were launch'd; but sweet death they had found;
Had efeaped, exulting, from flavery and pain;

Their fpirits high foaring had croff'd the wide main,
To vifit the land of their fathers and brothers;
To falute the lov'd fouls of their fifters and mothers.
O death! why so flow?—but why should I complain,
Since the launch has releaf'd me from collar and chain *?
O Maffa, a bit on poor Noffak bestow,

God Almighty you bless, no distress may you know.
Here laid on a dunghill, poor Noffak must lie;
No eye drops a tear; no breast heaves a figh;
But death fhall release me from forrow and pain;
Then my dear native home I'll revisit again.

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To the iron chain which they wear conftantly, a half hundred weight is appended, to prevent their running away during the night; and the collar has long spikes running out from it in every direction, to prevent their laying down their heads to reft.





The Wee Thing; or Mary of Castle Cary, an old Scots


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Saw ye my wee thing? Saw ye mine ain thing? Saw ye my true love

down on yon lea? Crofs'd fhe the meadow, ye



ftreen at the gloaming? Sought the the burnie whar flow'rs the haw tree?


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"Her hair it is lint white! her kin it is milk-white!
"Dark is the blue of her faft rolling, ee!
"Red red her ripe lip is, and fweeter than roses!
"Whar could my wee thing wander frae me?"

I faw na your wee thing, I faw na your ain thing,
Nor faw I your true love down by yon lea;

But I met my bonny thing late in the gloaming,

Down by the burnie whar flow'rs the haw tree."

Her hair it was lint white, her skin it was milk white, 'Dark was the blue o' her faft rolling ee! • Red war her ripe lips, and sweeter than rofes! Sweet war the kiffes that the gae to me!'

"It was na my wee thing! it was na mine ain thing!
"It was na my true love ye met by the tree!
"Proud is her leil heart, and modeft her nature,
"She never loo'd Le-man till ance fhe loo'd me.

"Her name it is MARY, fhe's frae CASTLE CARY,
"Aft has the fat, when a bairn, on my knee!
"Fair as your face is, war't fifty times fairer,
"Young braggart? fhe ne'er would gie kiffes to thee!"

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"It was then your MARY, fhe's frae CASTLE CARY,
"It was then your true love I met by the tree!
• Proud as her heart is, and modeft her nature,

• Sweet war the kiffes that fhe gae to me!'

Sair gloom'd his dark brow, blood red his cheek grew,
Wild flash'd the fire, frae his red rolling ee;

"Ye's rue fair this morning, your boasts and your fcorning; "Defend ye faufe traitor, for loudly ye lie!

Awa' wi' beguiling,' then cried the youth smiling;
Aff went the bonnet; the lint-white locks flee;
The belted plaid fa'ing, her white bofom fhawing,
Fair ftood the lov'd maid wi' the dark rolling ee!

"Is it my wee thing? is it mine ain thing? "Is it my true love here that I fee?"


O JAMIE! forgie me, your heart's conftant to me; 'I'll never mair wander, my true love, frae thee.'

To the Editor of the Bee.

To George Dempster.

DEMPSTER! thy country's friend! I call thee mine!
"Sweet is the fetting fun of ftormy life,"
But fweeter yet by far a charming gleam
Of genial fun to close the fummer day,
Ufeful, though placid, is thy fage retreat:

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