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s a little ceremony to be complied with, on your part, first.
What is that?
said he. How do I know, I rejoined, that you have any authority to demand a sight of my commission —the flag at your peak may be a cheat, and you may be no better than you take me for, a ship of war of some hitherto unknown government—you must show me your commission first.
This was said, pleasantly, on my part, for the idea was quite ludicrous, that a large, and stately steam-frigate, bearing the proud cross of St. George, could be such as I had hypothetically described her. But I was right as to the point I had made, to wit, that one ship of war has no right to demand a sight of the commission of another, without first showing her own. Indeed, this principle is so well known among naval men, that the lieutenant had come prepared for my demand, having brought his commission with him. Smiling, himself, now, in return, he said: Certainly, your request is but reasonable; here is her Majesty's commission, unrol