The sudden death of a woman at Whaley Bridge
To the Editor
It appears that my letter of the 7th inst. has been the means of “drawing the badger,” though he has taken a fortnight to prepare his epistle, and I must congratulate A.H. Colles” upon the ingenious manner in which he has distorted the composition of it, but would wish to remind him that ridicule is not argument, and that his attempt to make farce out of a tragedy does not reflect much credit upon him.
He has carefully avoided any reference to the case under discussion, but has evidently thought that he might be able to divert attention from it by a composition which will entitle him to be recognised as a second “master of flouts and gibes and sneers.”
With reference to his apology for using philanthropist in connection with my name there is no necessity for it, as I repudiate the definition which is generally understood of the word, for in my opinion charity, which is synonymous with philanthropy in the eyes of many people’ is twice cursed; it curseth him that gives and him that takes.
As for my plagiarism from Pitt, according to a rough copy of my Mss, which I have by me, the paragraph commences as follows: “But for fear of using stronger language, I will apply, with a little alteration, Pitt’s reply to Walpole for the defence,” &c.
With regard to the query, “Who is going to the law, and what for?” that is a question which I think “A.H. Colles” knows more about than I do, seeing that some of his friends went to a solicitor in Stockport for advice.
He states that he has “not disdained to answer a fool according to his folly;” but in the opinion of some persons “all wise men are fools,” so in that case I take it that he means to compliment me on my wisdom, though I would remind him of a passage in the Bible, which book I hope he believes in, “whosoever shall say thou fool shall be in danger of hell fire.”
“A.H. Colles” has no need to be afraid that calling me a boy will vex me, but as for getting up a meeting on the subject, it lies with Dr Allan and company to do that to clear themselves from blame.
It will be my pleasure to address a meeting in Whaley Bridge before another month is gone, although on an entirely different subject, but seeing that I do not know “Observer,” “Verax,” and company, I cannot invite them privately to attend. Owing to the remarks in “A.H. Colles” letter, I will divert from my original intention and speak on this subject for about ten or fifteen minutes, and I give a cordial invitation to “A.H. Colles,” “C.E. Johnstone,” “Dr Allan,” “Verax,” “N,” “Observer,” and last, but not least, “Mr. J.Butterworth,” of Throstledale , who did sign his name, and whose letter “A.H. Colles” has not had the manliness to reply to, to attend the meeting, and refute or uphold my statements.
My reason for publishing the private correspondence was to show that my opponents were anxious to stop the controversy by secret means, if possible, and my contention is that the content of those letters justifies the course I have taken, and the language I have used.
24th April 1888.