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At the R.M. Court this morning, after the other business had been disposed of, the case of Duff v. Qeoghan, claim Lll 6s 6d, was called, and caused not a little amusement to those present. Mr Branson appeared for the plaintiff, and briefly stated his client’s case. The following evidence was adduced : Neil Duff said he was a stable-keeper, residing in Ashburton. Had formerly kept a boarding-house. A young person named Mary Gallagher, a domestic servant, had boarded and lodged with him for ten weeks lately. She had been ill, and had had medical attendance costing H6s 6d. The claim was for the board at LI a week, and the doctor’s bill, 26s 6d. The defendant had distinctly promised to pay for anything the girl Gallagher migjht require while at plaintiff’s house. His instructions were to supply “ anything she wanted,” and the defendant would settle the account. Geoghan, the defendant, being sworn, distinctly denied having made any such promise as the plaintiff represented. He had casually made the acquaintance of Miss Gallagher, but knew no more about her than their Worships. He was a married man, living in Christchurch. Cross-examined by Mr Branson : The defendant admitted that plaintiff had been up to Christchurch (where defendant resides), about the girl to see about his account for her board. Defendant had, also visited Ashburton twice this year, and had seen the girl at Duff’s house. She was ill, and defendant had taken her a bottle of wine.

Mr Branson : “ And very kind I’m sure —but what made you do it ?” Defendant (hesitatingly) : Why I’d take a bottle of wine to anyone who is sick. Mr Branson; Well, how nice ! Why, you are quite a ph’lanthropist ! Do yon go round with bottles of wine for all the sick people you bear of ? Defendant : Ah, you are trying to puzzle me. Mr Branson: No, lam not. I want to know why yon took this girl the wine. Defendant: ’Cause why? Mr Branson: Exactly; ‘ ’cause why ?’ ”

Defendant: Well, I went to the Somerset Hotel when I was down here on the first occasion, and the barman mentioned the fact that this girl had a sprained ankle, and I just went up to see her. Mr Branson: And you took in a bottle of wine. Well, you are the kindesthearted man I ever met. Now, tell me, sir, did you ever write to this girl, or have any correspondence with her at all? Defendant: No. Mr Branson: You are positive ?—Now, be careful, sir. Defendant: Yes.

IV] r Branson: Why, your Worships, Mr Duff is re.uly to swear that the girl has shown him a letter in the defendant’s handwriting. In reply to the Bench (he police said the girl Gallagher was at present a patient in (he Christchurch Hospital.

The defendant hero admitted that he just wrote one letter to the girl to ask how she was getting on.

“Mr Branson: Very considerate indeed ! —Platonic love, I suppose 1 The Bench said the evidence was very conflicting, the plaintiff having directly contradicted the defendant, but, under all the circumstances of the case, judgment would be for the plaintiff', with costs.

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Bibliographic details

PLATONIC LOVE., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 627, 4 May 1882

Word Count

PLATONIC LOVE. Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 627, 4 May 1882

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