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Atrocities, Duels, Suicides, And Execution Of Gamblers

Volume I

The Gaming Table by Andrew Steinmetz, Volume II

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Atrocities, Duels, Suicides, And Execution Of Gamblers

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This man, it is well known, was executed for the murder of Weare.

Thurtell was evidently no common man. His spoken defence, as
reported, is one of the finest specimens of impassioned
eloquence--perfectly Demosthenic. His indignation at the reports
circulated in prejudice of his case was overwhelming. Nothing
can be finer than the turn of the following sentence:--'I have
been represented by the Press--WHICH CARRIES ITS BENEFITS OR
CURSES ON RAPID WINGS from one extremity of the kingdom to the
other--as a man more depraved, more gratuitously and habitually
profligate and cruel, than has ever appeared in modern times.'

Touching his gambling pursuits, he said:--'I have been
represented to you as a man who was given to gambling, and the
constant companion of gamblers. To this accusation in some part
my heart, with feeling penitence, pleads guilty. I have gambled;
I have been a gambler, but not for the last three years. During
that time I have not attended or betted upon a horse-race, or a
fight, or any public exhibition of that nature. If I have erred
in these things, half of the nobility of the land have been my
examples; some of the most enlightened statesmen of the country
have been my companions in them. I have, indeed, been a gambler;
I have been an unfortunate one. But whose fortune have I
ruined?--whom undone? My own family have I ruined; I have undone

[22] See the entire speech in 'Celebrated Trials,' vol. vi. 547.

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