I had not sup- posed he would move in the matter while I was away; and so I had not mapped out a scheme for determining the merits of officers; I had only remarked that it would be wise to submit every candidate to a sharp and searching examination; and privately I meant to put together a list of military qualifications that no- body could answer to but my West Pointers.
My candidate was called first, out of courtesy to me, and the head of the Board opened on him with official solemnity:
"The rule requiring four generations of nobility or else the candidate is not eligible."
The ceremony is performed in his majesty's great chamber of state, where the candidates
are to undergo a trial of dexterity very different from the former, and such as I have not observed the least resemblance of in any other country of the new or old world.
Later in the day the fourth candidate
appeared for the maid's situation -- a young woman of small expectations and subdued manners, who looked (as the landlady remarked) like a person overtaken by misfortune.
They could not even be certain, that a future nomination would present a candidate
in any degree more acceptable to them; and as their dissent might cast a kind of stigma upon the individual rejected, and might have the appearance of a reflection upon the judgment of the chief magistrate, it is not likely that their sanction would often be refused, where there were not special and strong reasons for the refusal.
The speeches of the two candidates, though differing in every other respect, afforded a beautiful tribute to the merit and high worth of the electors of Eatanswill.
The Honourable Samuel Slumkey, of Slumkey Hall, was the Blue candidate; and Horatio Fizkin, Esq., of Fizkin Lodge, near Eatanswill, had been prevailed upon by his friends to stand forward on the Buff interest.
Pickwick nor his companions took any vital interest in the cause of either candidate, the question was rather a difficult one to answer.
He certainly knew much more about rural problems than either Hughes, the Reform candidate, or Verner, the Constitutional candidate.
As he strode up a village street, brooding thus, his eyes encountered a complete contrast in the face of his other rival, the Reform candidate. Eric Hughes, with his blown blond hair and eager undergraduate face, was just getting into his motor car and saying a few final words to his agent, a sturdy, grizzled man named Gryce.
"Why do you object?" asked the placid candidate. "Because keeping hens is rather a mild amusement for a poacher?