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Memoirs of Carwin, the Biloquist by Charles Brockden Brown
page 3 of 86 (03%)
he called my incorrigible depravity, and encouraged himself to
perseverance by the notion of the ruin that would inevitably
overtake me if I were allowed to persist in my present career.
Perhaps the sufferings which arose to him from the disappointment,
were equal to those which he inflicted on me.

In my fourteenth year, events happened which ascertained my
future destiny. One evening I had been sent to bring cows from a
meadow, some miles distant from my father's mansion. My time was
limited, and I was menaced with severe chastisement if, according
to my custom, I should stay beyond the period assigned.

For some time these menaces rung in my ears, and I went on my
way with speed. I arrived at the meadow, but the cattle had broken
the fence and escaped. It was my duty to carry home the earliest
tidings of this accident, but the first suggestion was to examine
the cause and manner of this escape. The field was bounded by
cedar railing. Five of these rails were laid horizontally from
post to post. The upper one had been broken in the middle, but the
rest had merely been drawn out of the holes on one side, and rested
with their ends on the ground. The means which had been used for
this end, the reason why one only was broken, and that one the
uppermost, how a pair of horns could be so managed as to effect
that which the hands of man would have found difficult, supplied a
theme of meditation.

Some accident recalled me from this reverie, and reminded me
how much time had thus been consumed. I was terrified at the
consequences of my delay, and sought with eagerness how they might
be obviated. I asked myself if there were not a way back shorter
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