CHAPTER I. page 1
A very apt allegory has been imagined as the origin of Gaming.
It is said that the Goddess of Fortune, once sporting near the
shady pool of Olympus, was met by the gay and captivating God of
War, who soon allured her to his arms. They were united; but the
matrimony was not holy, and the result of the union was a
misfeatured child named Gaming. From the moment of her birth
this wayward thing could only be pleased by cards, dice, or
She was not without fascinations, and many were her admirers. As
she grew up she was courted by all the gay and extravagant of
both sexes, for she was of neither sex, and yet combining the
attractions of each. At length, however, being mostly beset by
men of the sword, she formed an unnatural union with one of them,
and gave birth to twins--one called DUELLING, and the other a
grim and hideous monster named SUICIDE. These became their
mother's darlings, nursed by her with constant care and
tenderness, and her perpetual companions.
The Goddess Fortune ever had an eye on her promising daughter--
Gaming; and endowed her with splendid residences, in the most
conspicuous streets, near the palaces of kings. They were
magnificently designed and elegantly furnished. Lamps, always
burning at the portals, were a sign and a perpetual invitation
unto all to enter; and, like the gates of the Inferno, they were
ever open to daily and nightly visitants; but, unlike the latter,
they permitted _EXIT_ to all who entered--some exulting with
golden spoil,--others with their hands in empty pockets,--some
led by her half-witted son Duelling,--others escorted by her
malignant monster Suicide, and his mate, the demon Despair.
`Religion, morals, virtue, all give way,
And conscience dies, the prostitute of play.
Eternity ne'er steals one thought between,
Till suicide completes the fatal scene.'