Page:Yorkshire Oddities, Incidents and Strange Events.djvu/54

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Yorkshire Oddities and Incidents.

John then took all that remained of his tracts and denunciations of woe against the idolators, in Italian and French, and tore them into small pieces, which he scattered about the streets of Calais, saying "he was commanded to do so as a testimony against them." On the 17th December they embarked on the French mail, a sailing packet, and had a very rough passage. It blew so hard that they could not reach Dover, but stood off Deal beach, and a boat conveyed the mail and the passengers ashore. They had to pay fifteen shillings each to the watermen, exclusive of their fare in the packet. They were well drenched with salt water, but John cheered on William by assuring him that before they reached home he would see the young woman who was to become his wife.

On reaching London, Wroe visited some of the Believers, and prepared the way for a future visit, when he would meet George Turner face to face. He assembled the Friends at Gravesend and Chatham, and prophesied before them, and William Lees at the former place saw the enchanting Cordelia Chenne, whom he afterwards married, thus fulfilling the prediction of Wroe in the billy-boat. The following year was an eventful one.

In January he received a communication "from the Spirit" that he was to spend forty days in a dark hole, and eat nothing but butter and honey, and drink milk. On the 29th he was publicly baptised in the river Aire, above Apperley Bridge, by John Brunton, of Bradford, in the presence of some thirty thousand spectators.

"Both sides of the river were lined with persons of various ages and denominations. The Spirit had given John a sign—that on his entering the water the sun should shine; for during the two preceding days the weather was extremely cold, with severe frost accompanied with snow. The Sunday forenoon on which the ceremony was to take place