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Justice For Rebels.

DURING the reign of Shun Chih, of the people of T‘êngi, seven in ten were opposed to the Manchu dynasty. The officials dared not touch them; and subsequently, when the country became more settled, the magistrates used to distinguish them from the others by always deciding any cases in their favour: for they feared lest these men should revert to their old opposition. And thus it came about that one litigant would begin by declaring himself to have been a “rebel,” while his adversary would follow up by shewing such statement to be false; so that before any case could be heard on its actual merits, it was necessary to determine the status both of plaintiff and defendant, whereby infinite labour was entailed upon the Registrars.
Now it chanced that the yamên of one of the officials was haunted by a fox, and the official’s daughter was bewitched by it. Her father, therefore, engaged the services of a magician, who succeeded in capturing the animal and putting it into a bottle; but just as he was going to commit it to the flames, the fox cried out from inside the bottle, “I’m a rebel!” at which the bystanders were unable to suppress their laughter.

盜戶

順治間,滕、嶧之區,十人而七盜,官不敢捕。後受撫,邑宰別之為「盜戶」。凡值與良民爭,則曲意左袒之,蓋恐其復叛也。後訟者輒冒稱盜戶,而怨家則力攻其偽;每兩造具陳,曲直且置不辨,而先以盜之真偽,反復相苦,煩有司稽籍焉。適官署多狐,宰有女為所惑,聘術士來,符捉入瓶,將熾以火。狐在瓶內大呼曰:「我盜戶也!」聞者無不匿笑。
  異史氏曰:「今有明火劫人者,官不以為盜而以為姦;踰牆行淫者,每不自認姦而自認盜:世局又一變矣。設今日官署有狐,亦必大呼曰『吾盜』無疑也。」

  章丘漕糧徭役,以及徵收火耗,小民常數倍於紳衿,故有田者爭求託焉。雖於國課無傷,而實於官橐有損。邑令鐘,牒請釐弊,得可。初使自首;既而奸民以此要上,數十年鬻去之產,皆誣託詭挂,以訟售主。令悉左袒之,故良懦者多喪其產。有李生為某甲所訟,同赴質審。甲呼之「秀才」;李厲聲爭辯,不居秀才之名。喧不已。令詰左右,共指為真秀才。令問:「何故不承?」李曰:「秀才且置高閣,待爭地後,再作之未晚也。」噫!以盜之名,則爭冒之;以秀才之名,則爭辭之:變異矣哉!有人投匿名狀云:告狀人原壤,為抗法吞產事:身以年老不能當差,有負郭田五十畝,於隱公元年,暫挂惡衿顏淵名下。今功令森嚴,理合自首。詎惡久假不歸,霸為己有。身往理說,被伊師率惡黨七十二人,毒杖交加,傷殘脛肢;又將身鎖置陋巷,日給簟食瓢飲,囚餓幾死。互鄉地証,叩乞革頂嚴究,俾血產歸主,上告。」此可以繼柳跖之告夷、齊矣。

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