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The Story of the Lunar Rogue

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Deciding whether or not Henry More Smith’s actions were genuine was a difficult task. After one of his earlier escapes from Kingston jail, the following notice appeared in which Bates attempted to describe the Lunar Rogue.

“He is supposed to be an Englishman, and is undoubtedly a most profound adept in the arts of knavery and deception. He speaks the English and French languages fluently, and can play off the air of a genteel Frenchman with the most imposing gravity. He is of middling stature, slender and active, and appears to possess an astonishing variety of genius. He is sick or well, grave or gay, silent or loquacious. And can fence, box fight, run, sing, dance, play, whistle or talk, as occasional suits. He amused himself while in prison by making and managing a puppet show, which he performed apparently with such means as to excite the wonder of the credulous. This involved having a piece of an old horse-shoe, whetted on the wall of his dungeon, as the only instrument of his mechanism, and complaining only the scarcity of timber to complete his group. He had the address, by an irresistible flow of good humour and cheerfulness, to make some believe that he was quite an innocent and harmless man. He excited sympathy enough in those who had the curiosity to see him, to obtain several gratifications which prisoners do not usually enjoy. Yet the depth of his cunning was evinced in accomplishing his means of escape which he effected by sawing a hole in the prison door, which is several inches thick, so neatly, that the block could be taken out and replaced without any marks of violence”.