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Ingenious Contrivance

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Many years ago, when stagecoaches were not
unfrequently attacked by highwaymen, a party was once travelling on a
lonely road, when one of the gentlemen mentioned to the company that he had
ten guineas with him, which he was afraid of losing. Upon this an elderly
lady who sat next to him, advised him to take his money from his pocket,
and slip it into his boot, which he did. Not long after the coach was
attacked, when a highwayman rode up to the window, on the lady's side, and
demanded her money; upon which she immediately whispered to him that if he
would examine that gentleman's boot, he would find ten guineas. The man
took the hint, and the gentleman was obliged to submit patiently; but when
the robber had gone, he loaded his fellow-traveller with abuse, declaring
her to be in confederacy with the highwayman. She replied that certainly
appearances were against her; but if the company in the stage would sup at
her house the following evening, she would explain a conduct which appeared
so mysterious. After a debate among themselves, they consented to go the
next evening according to her invitation. They were ushered into a
magnificent room, where an elegant supper was served, after which, the lady
taking a pocket-book from her pocket, showed that it contained various
notes to the amount of several hundred pounds, and addressing herself to
the gentleman who had been robbed: "I thought, sir," said she, "it was
better to lose ten guineas, than all this valuable property, which I had
about me last night; and I have now the pleasure of returning what you so
kindly lent me."





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