and act worthily and usefully in this State, without subjecting itself daily to innumerable, unjust and crushing prosecutions, and indictments for libel.
Even if Juries could have nerves of iron to say and do what they really think right between man and man, the costs of such prosecution would ruin any journal.
But the Liberty of the Press has often been compelled to appeal from the bench to the people.
It will do so now, and we will not doubt with success.
Let not, then, the wrong-doer who is cunning enough to keep the blind side of the law, the swindling banker who has spirited away the means of the widow and orphan, the libertine who has dragged a fresh victim to his lair, imagine that they are permanently shielded, by this misapplication of the law of libel, from fearless exposure to public scrutiny and indignation by the eagle gaze of an unfettered Press.
Clouds and darkness may for the moment rest upon it, but they cannot, in the nature of things, endure.
In the very gloom of its present humiliation we read the prediction of its speedy and certain restoration to its rights and its true dignity—to a sphere not of legal sufferance merely, but of admitted usefulness and honor.
This narrative, which came within three-quarters of a column of filling the entire inside of the Tribune, and must have covered fifty pages of foolscap, was written at the rate of about a column an hour.
It set the town laughing, elicited favorable notices from more than two hundred papers, and provoked the novelist to new anger, and another suit; in which the damages were laid at three thousand dollars. ‘We have a lively trust, however,’ said the offending editor, ‘that we shall convince the jury that we do not owe him the first red cent of it.’
This is one paragraph of the new complaint:
And the said plaintiff further says and avers that the syllables inhu, followed by a dash, when they occur in the publication hereinafter set forth, as follows, to wit, inhu——, were meant and intended by the said defendants for the word inhuman, and that the said defendants, in using the aforesaid syllables, followed by a dash as aforesaid, in connection with the context, intended to convey, and did convey, the idea that the said plaintiff, on the occasion referred to in that part of said publication, had acted in an inhuman manner.
And the said plaintiff also avers that the syllable ungen, followed by a dash, as follows, to wit, ungen——, when they occur in the publication hereinafter set forth, were meant and intended by the said defendants either for the word ungenerous or the word ungentlemanly, and that the said defendants, in using the syllables last aforesaid, followed by a dash as aforesaid, in connection with the context, intended to convey, and did convey, the idea that the said plaintiff, on the occasion referred to in that part of said publication, had acted