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[188] Lieutenant Flemington spurred his horse forward and turned him round full-face to the party.

‘Gentlemen, there's some mistake about all this!’ said he, as the men stopped, laughing at a puzzled expression which overspread his face: “for whereas, this honorable company of six has been for three years or more toilsomely marching on foot with an infantry regiment—but now rides good horses: and whereas, this honorable company of six has been for three years feeding upon hard-tack and bacon which grew continually harder and also less and wormier—but now devours Virginia biscuit and spring-chickens and ham and eggs and—and all the other things that came on, and went off, the table at mine host's of the Court House this morning . . . and whereas, we have hitherto draggled along in pantaloons that we could put on a dozen ways by as many holes, have worn coats that afforded no protection to anything but the insects congregated in the seams of the same, have had shirts that—shirts that—that—at any rate we have had shirts-but now do fare forth prankt in all manner of gorgeous array, such as gray jackets with fillimagree on the sleeves of 'em, and hussar-breeches, and cavalry-boots, and O shade of Jones of Georgia! with spurs to boot and clean white collars to neck: and whereas, we have been accustomed to think a mud-hole a luxury in the way of beds, and have been wont to beg Heaven as its greatest boon to man, not to let the cavalry ride over us without waking us up to see 'em do it—but now do sleep between white sheets without fear of aught but losing our senses from sleeping so intensely: and whereas, finally, all these things are contrary to the ordinary course of nature and are not known save as dim recollections of a previous state of existence in itself extremely hypothetical, therefore, be it resolved and it is hereby resolved:

‘Unanimously,’ from the five.

‘That this-figure-at present on this horse and clothed with these sumptuous paraphernalia of pompous war, is not B. Chauncey Flemington, that is to say (to borrow a term from the German metaphysics) is Not-Me, that this horse is not my horse, this paraphernalia not my paraphernalia, that para-ditto not your para-ditto, that this road is no road, and the whole affair a dream or phantasmagory of the Devil for no purpose but to embitter the waking from it.’

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