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of legal acumen that gave flattering presage of a wise and equitable administration. The morning after he had been installed in office, and at the moment that he was making his breakfast from a prodigious earthen dish, filled with milk and Indian pudding, he was interrupted by the appearance of Wandle Schoonhoven, a very important old burgher of New Amsterdam, who complained bitterly of one Barent Bleecker, inasmuch as he refused to come to a settlement of accounts, seeing that there was a heavy balance in favor of the said Wandle. Governor Van Twiller, as I have already observed, was a man of few words; he was likewise a mortal enemy to multiplying writings — or being disturbed at his breakfast. Having listened attentively to the statement of Wandle Schoonhoven, giving an occasional grunt, as he shoveled a spoonful of Indian pudding into his mouth, – either as a sign that he relished the dish, or comprehended the story, — he called unto him his constable, and pulling out of his breeches-pocket a huge jack-knife, dispatched it after the defendant as a summons, accompanied by his tobacco-box as a warrant. “This summary process was as effectual in those simple days as was the seal-ring of the great Haroun Alraschid among the true believers. The two parties being confronted before him,

each produced a book of accounts, written in a language and character that would have puzzled any but a High-Dutch commentator, or a learned decipherer of Egyptian obelisks. The sage Wouter took them one after the other, and having poised them in his hands, and attentively counted over the number of leaves, fell straightway into a very great doubt, and smoked for half an hour without saying a word; at length, laying his finger beside his nose, and shutting his eyes for a moment, with the air of a man who has just caught a subtle idea by the tail, he slowly took his pipe from his mouth, puffed forth a column of tobacco-smoke, and with marvelous gravity and solemnity pronounced, that, having carefully counted over the leaves and weighed the books, it was found, that one was just as thick and as heavy as the other: therefore, it was the final opinion of the court that the accounts were equally balanced: therefore, Wandle should give Barent a receipt, and Barent should give Wandle a receipt, and the constable should pay the COStS. “This decision, being straightway made known, diffused general joy throughout New Amsterdam, for the people immediately perceived that they had a very wise and equitable magistrate to rule over them. But its happiest effect was, that not another lawsuit took place throughout the whole of his administration; and the office of constable fell into such decay, that there was not one of those losel scouts known in the province for many years. I am the more particular in dwelling on this transaction, not only because I deem it one of the most sage and righteous judgments on record, and well worthy the attention of modern magistrates, but because it was a miraculous event in the history of the renowned Wouter — being the only time he was ever known to come to a decision in the whole course of his life.”

This peaceful age ended with the accession of William the Testy, and the advent of the enterprising Yankees. During the reigns of William Kieft and Peter Stuyvesant, between the Yankees of the Connecticut and the Swedes of the Delaware, the Dutch community knew no repose, and the “History '' is little more than a series of exhausting sieges and desperate battles, which would have been as heroic as any in history if they had been attended with loss of life. The forces that were gathered by Peter Stuyvesant for the expedition to avenge upon the Swedes the defeat at Fort Casimir, and their appearance on the march, give some notion of the military prowess of the Dutch. Their appearance, when they were encamped on the Bowling Green, recalls the Homeric age : —

“In the centre, then, was pitched the tent of the men of battle of the Manhattoes, who, being the inmates of the metropolis, composed the lifeguards of the governor. These were commanded by the valiant Stoffel Brinkerhoof, who, whilom had acquired such immortal fame at Oyster Bay; they displayed as a standard a beaver rampant on a field of orange, being the arms of the province, and denoting the persevering industry and the amphibious origin of the Nederlands. “On their right hand might be seen the vassals of that renowned Mynheer, Michael Paw, who lorded it over the fair regions of ancient Pavonia, and the lands away south even unto the Navesink mountains, and was moreover patroon of Gibbet Island. His standard was borne by his trusty squire, Cornelius Van Vorst : consisting of a huge oyster recumbent upon a sea-green field; being the armorial bearings of his favorite metropolis, Communipaw. He brought to the camp a stout force of warriors, heavily armed, being each clad in ten pair of linsey-woolsey breeches, and overshadowed by broad-brimmed beavers,

with short pipes twisted in their hat-bands.


These were the men who vegetated in the mud along the shores of Pavonia, being of the race of genuine copperheads, and were fabled to have sprung from oysters. “At a little distance was encamped the tribe of warriors who came from the neighborhood of Hell-gate. These were commanded by the Suy Dams, and the Van Dams, – incontinent hard swearers, as their names betoken. They were terrible looking fellows, clad in broad-skirted gaberdines, of that curious colored cloth called thunder and lightning, — and bore as a standard three devil's darning-needles, volant, in a flame-colored field. “Hard by was the tent of the men of battle from the marshy borders of the Waale-Boght and the country thereabouts. These were of a sour aspect, by reason that they lived on crabs, which abound in these parts. They were the first institutors of that honorable order of knighthood called Fly-market shirks, and, if tradition speak true, did likewise introduce the far-famed step in dancing called ‘double trouble.” They were commanded by the fearless Jacobus Warra Vanger, — and had, moreover, a jolly band of Breuckelen ferry-men, who performed a brave concerto on conch shells. “But I refrain from pursuing this minute description, which goes on to describe the warriors

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