Cache-Control: public, max-age=1024000 Watier's Club


This Club was the great Macao gambling-house of a very short period. Mr. Thomas Raikes, who understood all its mysteries, describes it as very genteel, adding that no one ever quarrelled there. "The Club did not endure for twelve years altogether; the pace was too quick to last: it died a natural death in 1819, from the paralysed state of its members; the house was then taken by a set of blacklegs, who instituted a common bank for gambling. To form an idea of the ruin produced by this short-lived establishment among men whom I have so intimately known, a cursory glance to the past suggests the following melancholy list, which only forms a part of its deplorable results.... None of the dead reached the average age of man."

Among the members was Bligh, a notorious madman, of whom Mr. Raikes relates:—"One evening at the Macao table, when the play was very deep, Brummell having lost a considerable stake, affected, in his farcical way, a very tragic air, and cried out, 'Waiter, bring me a flat candlestick and a pistol.' Upon which Bligh, who was sitting opposite to him, calmly produced two loaded pistols from his coat pocket, which he placed on the table, and said, 'Mr. Brummell, if you are really desirous to put a period to your existence, I am extremely happy to offer you the means without troubling the waiter.' The effect upon those present may easily be imagined, at finding themselves in the company of a known madman who had loaded weapons about him."

John Timbs
Club Life of London Vol. I
London, 1866