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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library - PinkMonkey.com-David Copperfield by Charles Dickens


'The best of men can do no more, Mr. Peggotty,' said Steerforth.
He had got his name already.

'I'll pound it, it's wot you do yourself, sir,' said Mr. Peggotty,
shaking his head, 'and wot you do well - right well! I thankee,
sir. I'm obleeged to you, sir, for your welcoming manner of me.
I'm rough, sir, but I'm ready - least ways, I hope I'm ready, you
unnerstand. My house ain't much for to see, sir, but it's hearty
at your service if ever you should come along with Mas'r Davy to
see it. I'm a reg'lar Dodman, I am,' said Mr. Peggotty, by which
he meant snail, and this was in allusion to his being slow to go,
for he had attempted to go after every sentence, and had somehow or
other come back again; 'but I wish you both well, and I wish you
happy!'

Ham echoed this sentiment, and we parted with them in the heartiest
manner. I was almost tempted that evening to tell Steerforth about
pretty little Em'ly, but I was too timid of mentioning her name,
and too much afraid of his laughing at me. I remember that I
thought a good deal, and in an uneasy sort of way, about Mr.
Peggotty having said that she was getting on to be a woman; but I
decided that was nonsense.

We transported the shellfish, or the 'relish' as Mr. Peggotty had
modestly called it, up into our room unobserved, and made a great
supper that evening. But Traddles couldn't get happily out of it.
He was too unfortunate even to come through a supper like anybody
else. He was taken ill in the night - quite prostrate he was - in
consequence of Crab; and after being drugged with black draughts
and blue pills, to an extent which Demple (whose father was a
doctor) said was enough to undermine a horse's constitution,
received a caning and six chapters of Greek Testament for refusing
to confess.

The rest of the half-year is a jumble in my recollection of the
daily strife and struggle of our lives; of the waning summer and
the changing season; of the frosty mornings when we were rung out
of bed, and the cold, cold smell of the dark nights when we were
rung into bed again; of the evening schoolroom dimly lighted and
indifferently warmed, and the morning schoolroom which was nothing
but a great shivering-machine; of the alternation of boiled beef
with roast beef, and boiled mutton with roast mutton; of clods of
bread-and-butter, dog's-eared lesson-books, cracked slates,
tear-blotted copy-books, canings, rulerings, hair-cuttings, rainy
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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library - PinkMonkey.com-David Copperfield by Charles Dickens



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