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Filial Affection Of The Moors

( Originally Published 1851 )



A Portuguese surgeon was accosted one day by a young Moor from the country, who, addressing him by the usual appellation of foreign doctors in that place, requested him to give him some drogues to kill his father, and, as an inducement, promised to pay him well. The surgeon was a little surprised at first, as might be expected, and was unable to answer immediately; but quickly recovering him-self (for he knew.the habits of the people well), replied with sang froid equal to the Moor's, " Then you don't live comfortably with your father, I sup-pose? " " Oh, nothing can be better," returned the Moor; " he has made much money, has married me well, and endowed me with all his possessions; but he cannot work any longer, he is so old, and he seems unwilling to die." The doctor, of course, appreciated the amiable philosophy of the Moor's reasoning, and promised to give him what he de-sired. He accordingly prepared a cordial potion, more calculated to restore energy to the old man, than to take it away. The Moor paid him well, and departed. About eight days after he came again, to say that his father was not dead. " Not dead!" exclaimed the apothecary, in well-feigned surprise; " he will die." Ile composed accordingly another draught, for which he received an equal remuneration, and assured the Moor that it would not fail in its effects. In fifteen days, however, the Moor carne again, complaining that his father thrived better than ever. " Don't be discouraged," said the doctor, who doubtless found these periodical visits by no means unprofitable, " give him another potion, and I will exert all my skill in its preparation." The Moor took it, but returned no more. One day the surgeon met his young acquaintance in the street, and inquired the success of the remedy. " It was of no avail," he replied mournfully; " my father is in excellent health. God has preserved him from all our efforts; there is no doubt that he is a Marabout "(a Saint.)

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