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Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Atlantic Essays, A charge with Prince Rupert. (search)
es. It was rather consoling to cover some ignominious retreat with a new epigram on Cromwell's red nose, that irresistible member which kindled in its day as much wit as Bardolph's,--to hail it as Nose immortal, a beacon, a glow-worm, a bird of prey, -to make it stand as a personification of the rebel cause, till even the stately Montrose asked new-comers from England, How is Oliver's nose? It was very entertaining to christen the Solemn League and Covenant the constellation on the back of Aries, because most of the signers could only make their marks on the little bits (,f sheepskin circulated for that purpose. It was quite lively to rebaptize Rundway Down as Run-away-down, after a royal victory, and to remark how Hazlerig's regiment of lobsters turned to crabs, on that occasion, and crawled backwards. But all these pleasant follies became whips to scourge them, at last,--shifting suddenly into very grim earnest when the Royalists themselves took to running away, with truculent s