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<1Chapter 1>1 IN the year 1775, there stood upon the borders of Epping Forest, at a distance of about twelve miles from London -- measuring from the Standard in Cornhill, or rather from the spot on or near to which the Standard used to he in days of yore -- a house of public entertainment called the Maypole; which fact was demonstrated to all such travellers as could neither read nor write (and at that time a vast number both of travellers and stay-at-homes were in this condition) by the emblem reared on the roadside over against the house, which, if not of those goodly proportions that Maypoles were wont to present in olden times, was a fair young ash, thirty feet in height, and straight as any arrow that ever English yeoman drew. The Maypole -- by which term from henceforth is meant the house, and not its sign -- the Maypole was an old building, with more gable ends than a lazy man would care to count on a sunny day; huge zig-zag chimneys, out of which i . . .