The Project Gutenberg eBook of Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science, and Art, No. 681

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Title: Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science, and Art, No. 681

Author: Various

Editor: Robert Chambers

William Chambers

Release date: August 31, 2014 [eBook #46739]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Susan Skinner and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at






Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science, and Art. Fourth Series. Conducted by William and Robert Chambers.

No. 681.SATURDAY, JANUARY 13, 1877.Priced.


In every account of the French Revolution, there crop up names of actors in that terrible drama, not to be forgotten. The very vileness of these individuals has rendered their names imperishable. Execrated by successive generations, it would never occur to us that a time would come when, by a distortion of principle, literature would try to gloss over the evil deeds of these infamous personages, and hold them up to general admiration and pity. It would be imagined that Robespierre, Marat, St Just, Danton, Camille Desmoulins, Hebert, Couthon, and a number of others, were too bad—too persistently wicked—to evoke sentiments of compassion. Time, however, brings about unexpected changes. For anything we can tell, some plodding enthusiast may be ransacking archives, and gathering traditions to represent Robespierre as a noble-minded hero, whose character has been altogether misunderstood. Marat, too, may possibly soon be spoken of with gentle regret—as what a worthy young man he was when studying medicine at Edinburgh, and living in modest lodgings in the College Wynd, and so on; making him out to be a prodigy of excellence. As a commencement to this new and undesirable literature, comes a biography of Camille Desmoulins, by a French writer, Jules Claretie, purporting to be founded on hitherto unpublished documents, and which appears before us as an English translation. Not a paltry-looking book is it by any means, but a handsomely printed octavo, of nearly five hundred pages, embellished with a portrait of the hero Camille. After that nothing will surprise us.

Unless for a hope of drawing some useful moral for the benefit of young and ardent spirits, we should not have ventured on any notice of this extraordinary production. What the moral is, will appear as we go along. It may be worth while in the first place to say that Claretie, the writer of the book, almost worships his hero. He sets out by describing him as the 'gamin of genius, whom Paris attracted, seduced, and kept for ever;' and then, to let us know the fullest particulars of the wonderful gamin, he makes a pilgrimage to the small town of Guise, in Picardy, where Camille was born, 2d March 1760. The antique little town is gone through from end to end; and the house in which Camille first drew breath, and spent his early years, situated in the street of the Grand Pont, in front of the Place d'Armes, is minutely described. Claretie was shocked to find that the inhabitants of the town had no remembrance of his hero. 'They have forgotten their unfortunate townsman, the generous fool, the madcap of genius, who gave his life to the Republic—they have forgotten, after having misunderstood, and perhaps calumniated him.'

Camille's father occupied a good position. Skilled in the law, he was lieutenant-general of the bailiwick of Guise, and a grave and industrious man, highly esteemed by all within his jurisdiction. His wife had brought him a small fortune, which partly paid for the education of his five children, of whom Camille was the eldest. As this eldest boy grew up, great hopes were entertained of his intelligence and general liveliness. He should receive a good college education, and be brought up a man of law. Who knows but he might one day become a member of the Parliament of Paris? With some financial scheming, and the presentation of a bursary, Camille was entered a student at the college of Louis-le-Grand. Here, studying with avidity, and quick in apprehension, he attained a singular proficiency in a knowledge of Greek and Roman classics. Unfortunately, the more deeply he became acquainted with ancient authors, the more was his enthusiastic temperament stimulated to uphold in its wildest form the cause of political liberty. Nothing restrained his impassioned notions. Poring over the Old Testament, he discovered, as he thought, in a passage in Ezekiel that the Revolution was predicted word for word. Then, in his perturbed imaginings he began to write poetry, full of frantic allusions to the harangues of Demosthenes and Cicero. Completing his education, he became a licentiate of law, and in 1785 was sworn in as an advocate of the Parliament of Paris. His choice of a profession was{18} somewhat of a mistake; for in the opening of a speech he usually stammered awkwardly, by involuntarily repeating the words hon, hon; wherefore, in fun, he acquired the name Monsieur Hon. It was only at the outset of an oration that he stumbled on hon, hon; for when once fairly set agoing he spoke fluently and with precision. Yet, the hon, hon was against him as a pleader, and he did not rise to distinction at the bar. The truth is, he was more ready as a writer than a speaker; and at the dawn of the Revolution he is found to be one of those pamphleteers who inconsiderately helped to stir up the wildest passions of the mob. To his relations in the antiquated town in Picardy he offered a painful spectacle. It was felt that his education and his brilliant talents had only qualified him to be a reckless demagogue. Sad down-come to the hopes of old Desmoulins, who had not the slightest desire to turn the world upside down.

Camille's infatuation was that of thousands, whose brains had been deranged not less by the teaching of so-called philosophers, than by the scandalous condition of public affairs. From causes familiar to all who have read the history of France, abuses of every sort had attained dimensions which nothing short of the most earnest and patient consideration could peaceably redress. Patient consideration, however, was the last thing thought of. The unfortunate Louis XVI. was unable to allay the general effervescence; and his ministers, though well-meaning in their way, were unfit to stem the political ferment. In July 1789, on the exile of Necker, the popular wrath was great. The great court-yard of the Palais-Royal, which we now see a picture of tranquillity with its nurses and children, was crowded with vehement orators. The most fiery of the whole is Camille Desmoulins, who jumps upon a table, and for the instant overcoming his stammer, addresses and adds fury to the surging multitude. The spark of armed revolt was struck. A day or two afterwards (July 14), the Bastille was assaulted and taken. In the midst of the hideous saturnalia, Camille is seen with a drawn sword in his hand, joining in the popular triumph.

From this time Camille is one of the leaders of the Revolution, by speaking at the clubs and using his pen freely. His work La France Libre (France Free) helped materially to give him notoriety. The book, however, dealt too much with liberty in the abstract. He deemed it necessary to hint at the advantages of doing summary justice on suspected individuals. Here was a scholar and a gentleman so carried off his feet by political frenzy as to write ironically of assassination. His production, animated with a terrible demoniac fury, was entitled Discours de la Lanterne aux Parisiens—in plain English, the iron of the street lamps is invoked as a convenient gallows on which to perform the atrocities of 'Lynch-law.' From this extraordinary and disreputable production, Camille became known as the 'procureur-général de la lanterne;' a designation which he did not dislike. Will it be credited? Claretie, who tells all this minutely, expresses no horror at the revelation. Speaking of the work, he says: 'There was never anything more eloquent. Its wit, even when it seems ill employed in deadly personalities, dazzles us.'

Conferring a feverish popularity on Camille, which was satisfying to his vanity, these productions were, it appears, of little pecuniary avail. He was now thirty years of age, with barely means of subsistence; such was his extremity, that he was driven to ask doles of money from his father, which could very ill be spared. From this state of depression his fortunes rose by the exercise of his pen as a journalist. His periodical was styled the Révolutions de France et de Brabant. It was successful, but only by the vileness of its lampoons and libels on private character, which brought him frequently into trouble. In his wild indiscretion, he even cut libellous jokes on M. Sanson, the public executioner, who, not inclining to submit to his impertinence, raised an action of damages to the extent of three thousand livres. Considering the way in which public affairs were drifting, an attack on Sanson was very much like an act of madness. The guillotine was soon to be in full swing.

Towards the end of 1790, Camille passed through what may be called the romance of his existence. He formed an ardent attachment to Lucille Duplessis, a young lady of a good family, handsome, beautiful, of gentle temperament, and whom he called 'an adorable little blonde.' M. Duplessis, the father, offered some opposition to the proposed match; but in time he assented to what seemed the inevitable, and accepting Camille as a son-in-law, gave him a good fortune with his daughter. The marriage took place December 29, 1790, and we observe that among Camille's friends as witnesses are inscribed the names of Petion and Robespierre.

While still pouring out invectives in his journal, there occurred a fresh theme for vituperation. Alarmed for his personal safety, the poor king attempted to fly with his family, and was arrested, and brought back (June 1791). Roused at the idea of the king's desertion of his post, Camille's fury knew no bounds. He degraded his pen by writing of the 'male and female Capets,' and in his fervour headed a deputation to the municipality informing them of the project of deposing Louis XVI. Shortly afterwards, under some apprehension of rough usage, he dropped the publication of his journal, and for a time he resumed his occupation of advocate at the tribunals. In these vicissitudes he clung in a friendly spirit to Danton, and Danton liked him as an associate. They lived in different floors of the same building, in the Cour de Commerce, and betwixt their respective wives there was a kindly intercourse, the account given of which comes soothingly amidst details of public perturbation. Camille's son, Horace, was born July 6, 1792, 'the little Horace whom Robespierre danced so often on his knees'—a fine point this for any biographer of Robespierre!

Soon came the terrible convulsion of the 10th August 1792, when the Tuileries were sacked by a savage mob, and the royal family were forced to seek refuge in the National Assembly. What part Camille took in this brutal affair is not mentioned. We only know that he was somehow engaged in the disturbance, and, to the consternation of his wife Lucille, came home with a gun in his hand. The monarchy, at which he constantly railed, was now substantially at an end. A universal terrorism was let loose. Searching visits to private houses having filled the prisons with suspected aristocrats, it was resolved to massacre them en masse. The municipality taking in hand this atrocity, hired a band of three hundred{19} assassins, who began the work of destruction on the 2d September. The massacre lasted five days, during which eight thousand individuals, convicted of no crime, were put to death with barbarous cruelty. Claretie indignantly denies that Camille had any hand in this iniquity, and throws the blame on Danton, who was now Minister of Justice and wished to strike terror into the royalists. An authority which we consider to be as trustworthy as Claretie, says distinctly that Camille, who was appointed secretary to Danton, 'organised with him the massacres in the prisons.' At anyrate, Camille was the confidant and associate of Danton, with whose designs he could scarcely fail to be acquainted.

Camille was now appointed a deputy to the Convention by the city of Paris, and as such he was placed in close connection with the leaders of the Revolution. We have not space to follow him in this new line of duty. As a Dantonist, he roundly abused the Girondists. To his eternal disgrace, he voted for the king's death, and had not even the good taste to refrain from facetiousness on the occasion. Deeply and remorsefully did he pay for his obsequiousness to the vilest of mankind. Already there was a Nemesis on his track. Batch after batch of unhappy individuals were condemned by the Revolutionary Tribunal, not only in Paris but all over France. Camille began to entertain the notion that things had gone too far. His conscience was roused, and roused in a remarkable manner. Walking out one evening, the rays of the setting sun shining brilliantly, seemed to transform the waters of the Seine into a river of blood. To his poetical fancy the phenomenon was accepted as an appeal to mercy, and awakened him to a lively sense of the horrors produced by the revolutionary mania. We are led to understand that from this time he began to agitate for moderate measures. The change of views, though morally commendable, was fatal as regarded his own safety. Camille, who at first was thought to be recklessly extreme in his views, was now reckoned among the moderates, and was pointed at with the finger of scorn. He was chargeable with the grave offence of dining with aristocrats. Repudiated by the Cordeliers, of which club he had once been a shining light, he was in a sense a political outlaw. Such was the reward of his frantic extravagances. In his mortification he commenced a paper in numbers, the Vieux Cordelier (Old Cordelier). It was admirable as a brilliant effort of genius, but was of no more avail than if it had been addressed to a menagerie of wild beasts. The Old Cordelier advocated the institution of a Committee of Clemency to stay the Reign of Terror. The proposals for mercy were denounced at a meeting of the Jacobin Club, when Robespierre suggested that the numbers of the Old Cordelier then published should be burned. 'Burning is not answering,' said Camille. 'Well, your writings shall be answered,' replied Robespierre. The answer was to be of a sharper nature than was implied by the words. Robespierre resolved to get rid of Camille, as any further connection with him would imperil his own safety.

From the fragmentary documents which Claretie has strung together, it is learned that in the beginning of 1794 Camille was beset by fatal presentiments. 'He was weary; he felt that all was lost; and that he had brought about not his own destruction only, but that of his family.' Bitter consideration! We wonder—for Claretie does not tell us—whether Camille at this saddening period ever had a clear idea of the error he had committed? Did he now see that while his theories were possibly unchallengeable in the abstract, they had all along been unsuitable for practical application in France, where the bulk of the people were illiterate, and without any experience of the obligations incidental to constitutional government? Likely enough, like others about him, his head was too much in the clouds to see things in this light. The 'generous fool,' as Claretie calls him, he had, ever since commencing as tribune of the people, been contributing to widespread ruin and his own cruel death. Possibly, he reckoned that the friendship of Robespierre, who was now the arbiter of fate, would save him from the guillotine. Vain hope, if it ever existed. Robespierre, the 'Incorruptible,' knew nothing of friendship, in pursuit of his grand idea of cutting off three hundred thousand heads; and the heads of Camille Desmoulins and his wife Lucille would help as well as others to make out the tale. Besides, Camille's defection towards moderatism was not to be endured.

It was not pleasant for Camille to find that he was at the mercy of a man possessed with notions so very uncompromising; but he had brought this awkward position on himself, and felt he must take the consequences. Robespierre had no difficulty in finding a plea to ruin Camille. Passages of the Old Cordelier were quoted to his disadvantage. Camille foresaw his condemnation, and while anticipating his arrest, he received a letter from his father intimating the death of his mother. 'Camille's grief was profound; his eyes were still red with tears when the patrol charged with the duty of arresting him and Danton, took possession of the Cour de Commerce. The first words that Camille uttered when he heard the dull sound of the butt-ends of the muskets on the pavement were: "They have come to arrest me." Lucille listened to him, and looked at him bewildered. She felt as if she should go mad. Camille was calmer than might have been expected. He dressed himself, embraced his child, took from his library Young's Night Thoughts, and Hervey's Meditations among the Tombs, and then pressing to his heart his weeping wife, whom he adored, their lips met for the last time in an agonising kiss made bitter by burning tears.'

Camille and Danton were carried off to the prison of the Luxembourg. Friends endeavoured to interpose in Camille's favour. Lucille traversed Paris trying to reach Robespierre's ear, that she might move him to pity. All in vain. There was a trial, but it was little better than a sham. Danton, Camille Desmoulins, Lacroix, Herault de Sechelles, Fabre d'Eglantine, Westerman, and some others, fifteen in all, were condemned. It was done! The Dantonists were to die. For the short space they were in prison previous to execution, Camille crouched down and wept over his wasted existence, and of what his young and bereaved wife might have to endure on his account. He had committed a double crime. By his folly two existences were blighted. And it was agonising to think of being brought to a violent death at thirty-four years of age, when full of life and{20} vigour—hard to be sent to the scaffold by a parcel of ruffians, for whom he had paved the way to power by his writings, and who were glad to get rid of him, as being no longer useful in their selfish designs. These were crushing thoughts for Camille, at this terrible moment. Danton took things more philosophically. He, too, had to leave a young wife, but besides being less remorseful, he was of a manlier nature, and he stood firm at the approach of death. When the executioner arrived at the prison with his assistants to perform the toilet of the condemned, Camille struggled unmanfully, and it was necessary to tie him to his seat while the collar of his shirt and his hair were cut. He asked Danton to place between his bound hands a locket containing Lucille's hair, which he had hitherto worn next his heart. Danton complied; then gave himself up in his turn to the scissors and cords of the executioner.

The condemned filled two tumbrils or carts. The cortège, environed by an immense crowd, pursued its way along the quay of the Seine to the Place de la Révolution. 'Wild with rage and despair, Camille tried to break his bonds, and tearing his shirt to rags, so that his shoulders, neck, and chest shewed through the tatters, he made a last appeal to the crowd.' 'Citizens, your preservers are being sacrificed! It was I who in '89 called you to arms; I raised the first cry of liberty! My crime, my only crime has been pity.' Vain words. Danton requested him to be quiet. It was a beautiful April evening in 1794, as the two cartloads of victims were driven to the foot of the scaffold, on which stood the hideous machine, which glowed in the setting sun. All around, the taverns were full of men drinking, who enjoying the spectacle, sung, and clinked their glasses. A few minutes sufficed to put the Dantonists out of existence. At the last, Camille recovered his composure, and died with the lock of Lucille's hair in his hand.

A terrible but just retribution, when we consider the part Camille had taken to stimulate the popular fury! There was something less justifiable and more heart-rending to ensue. Lucille had been seen hovering near the prison, trying to get a glimpse of her husband; and was seized on the preposterous charge of plotting to overthrow the Convention. She had been only guilty of love and despair. Along with eighteen other women, all under twenty-six years of age, she was condemned. There was a grandeur in the death of the unfortunate Lucille. She was a little pale but charming. Conscious of her innocence, and animated with the pious hope of speedily joining her dear Camille, her face bore a smile of happiness when placed under the guillotine. 'The fair child-like head retained its expression of profound joy and passionate ecstasy even after it lay bleeding in the dreadful basket.' The family tragedy was complete; for little Horace was too young to be beheaded. He grew up a fine boy in charge of his mother's family, but died young at Jacmel, in Hayti, 1817. There is some satisfaction in knowing that, in little more than three months after the judicial murder of the Desmoulins, Robespierre perished by the same violent death which he had fanatically meted to others.

For some not uninteresting particulars regarding the effects that had belonged to the Desmoulins family, we must refer to the work of Claretie, which at least deserves the praise of untiring industry and enthusiasm; while it will be admitted that much pains must have been taken with the translation.[1] In concluding his narrative, the author offers a number of laudatory remarks on the Revolution, with which we cannot possibly agree. A convulsion that destroyed the lives of upwards of a million human beings, besides leading to military despotism, and wars which for two-and-twenty years were the scourge of mankind, can never, among well-regulated minds, be spoken of without abhorrence. As eighty-six years have failed to give a settled government to France, nothing can be more certain than that the disorderly excesses promoted by Camille Desmoulins and others were an irreparable and ever-to-be-lamented blunder.

W. C.


[1] Camille Desmoulins and his Wife. By Jules Claretie. Translated by Mrs Cashel Hoey. Smith and Elder, London, 1876.



'Only a little hungry.'

Was it my voice making the humiliating confession? Had I lost my self-command and self-respect to such an extent as that! The words seemed to come from my dry lips independently of my will.

Sundry ejaculations in one voice, and 'I thought she looked a poor half-starved mortal!' in another, brought my stray senses back, and I looked about me. I was lying on a couch in a back sitting-room, smaller, and more comfortable in appearance than that which I had first seen, Mr Wentworth and his sour-looking servant watching me. A strong unpleasant smell of burnt feathers pervaded the room. As I afterwards found, Hannah knew of no better remedy for faintness; and her master had hurriedly set light to a packet of quill pens, whilst she deluged my face and head with water.

'Bring some wine and the best you have in the way of food, at once,' said Mr Wentworth.

She quitted the room; and her master considerately went towards the window, and stood there turning over the leaves of a pamphlet until she re-entered carrying a tray, upon which were a glass of sherry, a small basin containing something with a savoury smell, and some bread.

'Have you nothing better than that?' he asked.

'It's the strong gravy I was making for your chicken,' she replied. 'She couldn't have anything better than that upon an empty stomach.'

I tried to utter a little protest; but I soon felt it was no use; I should never be able to get away decently without the little fillip which the food and wine would give me. So I took a few spoonfuls of the gravy and a little bread, trying to keep up appearances by saying that I had foolishly taken a very light breakfast, and so forth.

He accepted the explanation in an easy, matter-of-course way; adding, that he also frequently{21} got into disgrace with Hannah on account of his want of appetite in the early morning, and could quite understand other people's shortcomings in the same way. Then he courteously expressed a hope that I should rest there until Hannah had prepared luncheon. 'There is no one in the house besides us three, and therefore you will not be disturbed. Quietness is about the only thing this old place has to boast of now.'

'You are very kind,' I murmured, at a loss for words.

'In an hour or two, when you have had luncheon, and feel quite sure you are sufficiently rested, I will give you fuller particulars as to the best way of getting to Fairview. We shall meet there very shortly, I daresay, when I trust to hear that you approve of your new surroundings, Miss Haddon.' Then, touching my hand, and bowing low with old-fashioned courtesy, he quitted the room.

The old woman watched him with astonished eyes, and then turned them suspiciously upon me. I could not help fancying that she was mentally repeating the words, 'Meet there very shortly.' How weak I must have been to let this grim-looking, disagreeable old woman see the tears which forced themselves into my eyes. I intuitively knew that tears and weakness were the very worst weapons to use with one of her calibre. I felt that she had in her heart declared war against me from the very moment I succeeded in obtaining an interview with her master, and, so to speak, set her at defiance. This was but an armed truce between us, if truce it was. In course of time I learned that there was another cause for her antagonism.

Her forbidding suspicious looks had very soon the good effect of helping me towards recovery. Brushing away the tears which her master's kindness had brought to my eyes, I drank the sherry, set to work with the spoon again, and was presently able to eye her as steadily and speculatively as she eyed me.

'You will do now, till lunch is ready, I suppose?'

'I shall do now without luncheon; in five minutes I shall be able to go. Will you please tell Mr Wentworth so; and say if he will kindly send me the further instructions he spoke about, I need not disturb him again.'

'You are going to meet again?' I thought rather offensively.

'Yes; I hope so.—My bonnet, please. How wet you have made my hair!'

'I suppose it's most of it that new stuff, that can be easily dried or replaced,' she ungraciously replied, presenting my bonnet. (I did not take the trouble to vindicate my hair, simply using a towel which lay near to press out the water as much as possible.) 'I am sorry there is not a looking-glass in the room; but I can fetch one, if you like.'

I saw that this was meant for sarcasm, so pleasantly responded: 'Yes, please.'

'It's at the top of the house,' she grumbled.

'In that case I will excuse you from fetching it,' I replied, with amiable condescension.

She waited a moment to recover that, and then said: 'You are not going to stop to lunch then?'

'No. Does that surprise you?'

'Yes; it does.'

'Ah, that shews you may be mistaken sometimes.'

She seemed to hesitate a moment as to whether she should carry on the war or not; and then, I suppose, concluded to defer it, though she took unnecessary pains to shew that it was only deferred, frowning angry defiance at me as she went out of the room.

She presently returned with the message that her master thought I could not be sufficiently rested, and hoped I would stay to luncheon; adding, with a grim smile: 'He is not accustomed to ladies who are given to fainting; and does not know how soon they can sometimes get over it.'

'Your master is very kind; but I must go now.'

'If you would not be persuaded, I was to give you this.'

'I am much obliged to him,' I replied, taking the letter she offered; I really could not honestly add, 'and to you;' but bade her good-day as pleasantly as I could. She opened the room-door, and then the hall-door, still as it were under protest, and with the same expression of disapproval on her face. 'I suppose it is a disagreeable manner that is natural to her,' I thought, as I turned away.

I walked slowly to the Park, where I sat down and rested awhile; then went on again towards home—if I could give the place I found shelter in so euphemistic a name—trying to get used to the idea of my good fortune, and to think over the arrangements that had to be made for my flitting. But I was not yet equal to anything in the way of sustained thought, only conscious, in a pleasant, dreamy kind of way, that a heavy burden was lifted off my shoulders, and that life would now be more endurable for the next few months.

The fresh air was doing me good; and by the time I had reached the house where I lodged, situated in a by-street west of the Park, I had begun to recover my mental equilibrium. But I fancy my first proceeding after reaching my room made Becky, the small maid who occasionally did errands for me, think that I had taken leave of my senses.

'A chop, and a sixpenny cake, and a quarter of a pound of best butter, and an ounce of tea and sugar!' she repeated, staring at me with widely opened eyes, while she ran over the items, pausing at each, as though to remind me of what I was doing.

'I am expecting company, Becky,' I replied, with what was meant for a reassuring smile.

But Becky was not to be so easily reassured. 'Then give them a penny'o'th of shrimps, and keep the chop and the cake for yourself when they are gone,' she earnestly advised.

'But it is some one I care very much for, Becky,' I replied; 'and I can quite afford it now—I can indeed.'

Very reluctantly she took the money, and went off with a grave face to do my bidding. Then I sat down with pencil and paper to make certain calculations. I possessed fifteen shillings and sixpence in money, my clothes, and a certain packet of my dear mother's old-fashioned jewellery, with a few words written on the outside to the effect that, in the event of either illness or death, the contents were to be sold to defray expenses. I had spoken truly enough in alluding to my sore need. I had had a hard fight for existence for five long{22} weary months, during which time I had been able to obtain no better employment than such as was to be had from shops. Embroidery, screen-painting, wool-work illuminating, I tried them all in turn, with very slight success in the matter of remuneration; 'ladies' being, I found, looked upon rather suspiciously as workers, and as a rule, expected to give a great deal more labour for small pay than do the 'regulars,' as they are called. This arises, or did arise—women are getting wiser in these days—from the false delicacy of a few, who preferred keeping up the fiction that they were only playing at work, and so deteriorated the value of gentlewomen as workers. I soon found that it was hopeless to expect to earn a living that way; and as I had not the experience in teaching which I believed to be necessary for a governess to have, there seemed little else to turn to than that of obtaining an engagement as companion. After the expenses of my mother's funeral had been paid, I found myself almost destitute; and though I had contrived to exist since, it was a kind of existence which could not go on much longer. And yet there was a bright future before me, if I could contrive to get through the next eight or ten months.

Eight years before the commencement of this story, I was on the eve of marriage with Philip Dallas, and we were to set out on a voyage to Jamaica immediately afterwards. Certain plantations there, belonging to his elder brother, were going to ruin for want of an interested overlooker on the spot. Edward Dallas did not wholly depend upon the property, and was not inclined to exile himself; but as he appeared still less inclined to advance his brother's fortunes in England, Philip and I agreed to go out and reside in Jamaica until he had made a competency, which we had every reason to believe might be done in the course of a few years. We were young (both one-and-twenty), and strong, and energetic; and hoped, by careful living, to be able to return in time to enjoy the best part of our lives in Old England. The one and only thing which caused us to hesitate was the dread of leaving my dear mother. But she would not hear of Philip sacrificing his prospects, or of my remaining with her. Unselfish as she was clear-sighted, she cheerfully assured us she would be more happy in the reflection that her child was the wife of a good man, and well cared for, than in keeping me by her side. She was so unmistakably in earnest, that we felt we were really doing what would most conduce to her happiness in obeying her. She had her small pension, which quite sufficed for her needs; and as she pointed out to us, she was altogether better situated than many mothers. There seemed every reason for hoping that she would live to a good old age, and we persuaded ourselves that we should be in England again in time to be a comfort to her declining years.

We had few friends, mother and I. Her limited means, and perhaps a little of the morbid sensitiveness which the refined poor are apt to acquire, prevented her moving in the society she was so well fitted for; and as years went by, she gradually drifted away from old associations without making new ones. By my father's family (in which my father was the only son) she had never been much noticed; and after his death, which took place when I was a child, they entirely ignored her. She had accepted the position—which now entailed straitened circumstances—and proudly kept aloof from them. It was perhaps natural enough that the Haddons of Haddon should not approve the marriage of their only son with the vicar's penniless daughter; the match was perhaps not a very prudent one, but they ought not to have forgotten that she was a gentlewoman. So little, however, did the loss of their favour trouble us, that it had come to be a jest between my mother and me to threaten each other with the Haddons of Haddon when any little financial difficulty arose; a jest which made us more inclined to be satisfied with things as they were. We could imagine nothing more humiliating than being obliged to apply to the Haddons of Haddon for aid of any kind.

My modest trousseau was prepared, and everything packed ready for transport to the vessel in which our passage was taken. It was the evening before our wedding-day, and Philip and I had been for a walk in a quiet silent fashion of our own, taking farewell of the old country. We walked through part of the city, at peace in the soft summer moonlight after its day of unrest; and turning into a church where evening service was going on, knelt down unseen in one of the high pews to join in the prayers. Then we turned our steps homewards—it would ever be home to us where my dear mother was—our hearts too full for words.

I was to spend the remainder of this last night alone with her; and as we had previously agreed to do, Philip and I parted at the door. Ah, Philip! how good and true, how handsome you looked as you stood there lingering to say a few last words, before I entered the house!

'Our last parting, Mary! God bless you, dear wife. Try to make our mother believe what you will be to me; it will be her best comfort; and remind her of our agreement. No tears to-morrow.'

Ah, me! had sorrow not been too deep for tears, there would have been nothing else on the morrow. I ran hastily up-stairs—we had secured comfortable lodgings with a respectable family for her—and opened the door, looking towards her accustomed seat as I half-uttered some little loving speech; only half-uttered it, and then broke down with a cry of alarm. My mother was lying on the floor in what, for the first few moments, I imagined to be a fainting-fit. Alas! it was more serious than that. Whether the cause was physical or mental, I know not; it is most probable that she had suffered more about the approaching separation between us than she herself would allow; but she was taken up a helpless and incurable invalid, who would never again be able to move from her couch. That was the fiat issued by the medical men on the bright May morning which was to have seen me a happy bride.

It was very hard for Philip; and as might naturally be expected, he for a while found it difficult to accede to the sudden change in his prospects. But I knew he was not likely to blame me for acting as I did, after the first bitterness of disappointment was over. After a hurried interview with his brother, in which the latter insisted upon his keeping to his bond, and setting sail with or without me, Philip entreated me to go through the ceremony with him, and let him at{23} least feel that he was leaving a wife. I might soon be left motherless, he pleaded; and in that case, it would be so much easier for me to follow him as his wife.

My courage almost gave way. I was sorely tempted to yield. But the doctors had said that, though my dear mother might not live very long, there was just a possibility that she might linger for years. My mother might be excused for looking at the question only as it affected her child; and she entirely sided with Philip in wishing me to become his wife, since I insisted upon remaining with her. But I had to think for him; and strength was given me to act according to my perception. So long as my mother was spared to me, she must be my care, and Philip must remain unfettered. That was my decision; and they could not turn me from it by any amount of persuasion. The following day Philip set forth alone, and I remained with my mother. But if, in his disappointment, he was a little hard with me at the time, his first letter shewed that he blamed me no longer.

I know now it never occurred to him that my mother's income might die with her. He had been content to take a penniless bride; and if he gave a thought to my mother's money, it was only to rejoice that she had enough until he could more amply provide for her. Pride, self-reliance, or perhaps a little of both, prevented my telling him at the last.

She lived nearly eight years after his departure. Philip, with whom I had corresponded all that time, was beginning to write hopefully of being able to return within a twelvemonth, and I tried to struggle on unaided. What I should have done had things come to the worst, I know not. There was Edward Dallas; but he was a hard man, who had taken a great deal more kindly to the delay than he had to our marriage, and I did not choose that he should know his brother's future wife required his charity. And there were the Haddons of Haddon, I told myself, with a forlorn attempt at the old jest.

Meantime, Philip's letters arrived regularly, full of life, and love, and hope. He had succeeded beyond his expectations. The estate had rapidly increased in value under his management. Before he had been there a year, he was able to dictate terms to his brother, and had since acted as managing partner, with everything in his own hands. Before she died, my dear mother had the happiness of believing that Philip and I would soon be united and living in affluence. It was her greatest comfort to know that I never regretted my decision, and that Philip had come in time to say that he loved and trusted me all the more for having kept to it.

As years passed on, there had been observable in Philip's letters just the growth of mind which might have been expected in the man I had known at twenty-one. I on my side did my best to make my mental growth worthy of his. But of late, when I looked at the portrait in my locket of the fair, frank, almost boyish face of my lover, I was conscious of a certain uneasiness slowly but surely taking root in my heart, though I told myself that of course he could not look like that now. Did he also remember the years that had passed, when he looked at the portrait he had of me? Did he reflect that a woman of nine-and-twenty could no longer look like a girl? But these reflections disturbed me only occasionally, and were soon put aside as unworthy of the woman he loved. He loved me, so what mattered my age?



This famous band of British soldiers has always played an important part in the annals of this country, and its services afford an example of what our army has been in the past, and what England hopes it will be in the future. The brigade consists of the Grenadier, Coldstream, and Fusilier Corps; the first having three battalions, and the others two each. Each regiment is distinct in itself, and is possessed of its own traditionary records, although the brigade has likewise traditions common to the trio which extend over a period of more than two hundred years; for these splendid corps have ever been inseparable, though each is in possession of an orderly-room of its own at the Horse Guards, where its affairs are conducted, and where are kept, amongst many interesting souvenirs, its records and State colour or flag. The latter is an elaborate standard, used only on special state occasions, such as the coronation, mounting guard on the sovereign's birthday, &c.; and is of crimson silk, richly embroidered with gold, and edged with gold fringe, and bearing in the centre of its silken folds the names of the battles in which the regiment to which it belongs has been engaged.

The oldest of the three regiments is the Coldstream, which, when the brigade is paraded, takes up its position as such on the left of the line; the Grenadier regiment comes next in point of seniority, and occupies the right; while the Fusilier—the youngest regiment—forms up in the centre. This formation may appear mysterious to non-military readers, as, according to popular notions, the oldest regiment always occupies the right of the line; but this is not so, for the true reason is, that the Grenadiers occupy the right because of the particular service which their title signifies, the grenadier company of every regiment being the first company.

The proper designation of the three corps is as follows: 1. The Grenadier or First Regiment of Foot Guards. 2. The Coldstream Guards. 3. The Scots Fusilier or Third Regiment of Foot Guards. This is the order in which they stand when on the right of the army, and it will be seen that although there is a first and third regiment of Foot Guards, there is, nominally, no second, the Coldstreams never being officially designated by any number. The reason for this will presently appear; and in the meantime we will take the regiments in regular order, and narrate, as briefly as possible, the history of each, together with some deeds of daring performed by individual members of them, and the collective achievements of the brigade.

The Grenadier Guards, as just mentioned, takes{24} the right of the British army when in line. It is looked upon as the premier corps of our infantry, and was raised under the following circumstances. In the year 1655, Cromwell having allied himself with Louis XIV., Charles (II.) quitted the French coast and joined the Spaniards in the Netherlands against the king of France. The loyal English who shared the prince's exile were enrolled in 1657, and formed into six regiments. The first of these was called the 'Royal Regiment of Guards.' There after a time it became disbanded, through the inability of the exiled prince to maintain it intact; and its members were compelled to wander about the continent, many of them being reduced so low as to beg for their daily subsistence.

On the Restoration of Charles II. the regiment was again assembled, and returned to its native land, where, under circumstances which will be narrated in connection with the Coldstreams, it became the First Regiment of Foot Guards.

At Waterloo, this regiment particularly distinguished itself by totally defeating the Grenadiers of the French Imperial Guards, and thus won a chaplet which will for ever be associated with its name, for after the battle the Prince Regent conferred upon it the title of 'Grenadier Guards' in honour of the event. Every Briton must remember with pride the glorious charge of the Guards on that occasion, when, lying down (to avoid the galling fire of the French artillery) until their opponents were within a few yards of the supposed breach in the British line, they sprang up at the magic and heart-thrilling words of 'Up, Guards, and at them!'—ascribed to the Duke of Wellington; and after pouring a tremendous volley into the devoted ranks of Ney's followers, rushed madly forward to a splendid and complete victory.

The Duke of Cambridge is the present colonel of the regiment, and its colours bear the words Lincelles, Corunna (at which battle it was the only regiment of the Guards present), Barrosa, Peninsula, Waterloo, Alma, Inkerman, and Sevastopol. The badge of the regiment is a grenade, which is likewise borne on the colours, together with the royal cipher within the garter, and the words, 'Honi soit qui mal y pense.'

The Coldstream Guards was raised in the year 1650; but it was in 1660 that it marched from the little town of Coldstream (from whence it derives its name), near Berwick-on-Tweed, to London, under the command of its first colonel, George Monk (afterwards Duke of Albemarle), for the express purpose of restoring the monarchy by placing Charles II. on the throne. Monk was a general in the Parliamentary forces and an admiral of the fleet, and owing to this latter fact the regiment is permitted to bear upon its Queen's colour a small Union-jack, in honour of its first colonel's naval rank; a proud privilege not appertaining to any other regiment in the service.

The 'gallant Coldstreamers,' as they were called, materially assisted in the happy restoration of the English monarchy; and while marching to London they met with an enthusiastic reception in the towns and villages through which they passed. In the meantime Colonel Russell, an old loyalist officer, had raised a corps which he called the 'King's Regiment of Guards;' and on the arrival of Charles it was united with the 'Royal Regiment of Guards' which came with him. After the Restoration, the three regiments which now form the brigade of Guards were assembled on Tower Hill to take the oath of allegiance to the king; and as a sign that they repudiated the Commonwealth, they were ordered to lay down their arms. Having obeyed this order with the utmost alacrity, they were commanded to take them up again in the king's service as the First, Second, and Third Regiments of Foot Guards. The First and Third Regiments did so with cheers; but the Coldstreamers, to the astonishment of the king, who was present, stood firm.

'Why does your regiment hesitate?' inquired Charles of General Monk.

'May it please your Majesty,' said the stern old soldier, lowering the point of his sword, 'the Coldstreamers are your Majesty's devoted servants; but after the service they have had the honour of rendering to your Highness, they cannot consent to be second to any corps in your Majesty's service.'

'And they are right,' said the king; 'they shall be second to none. Let them take up their arms as my Coldstream Regiment of Foot Guards.'

Monk rode back to the line and communicated the king's decision to the regiment. It had a magical effect. The arms were instantly raised amid frantic cries of 'Long live the king!' Since this event the motto of the Coldstream Guards has been 'Nulli Secundus'—Second to None.

The regiment has had a part in every important campaign which has taken place during the two hundred and twenty-six years of its existence, and has on many occasions greatly distinguished itself. Its colours bear the words Lincelles, Egypt (with the Sphinx), Talavera, Barrosa, Peninsula, Waterloo, Alma, Inkerman, and Sevastopol. And the badge of the regiment is the star of Brunswick with the garter and motto, 'Honi soit qui mal y pense.'

The Scots Fusilier Guards was raised previous to the Restoration, and did good service as a part of the Parliamentary army. Though generally believed to be of Scotch origin, such is not the fact, for the regiment originally came from Ireland, and was an Irish corps, its name being taken from its first colonel and founder, Scot; hence Scot's Fusiliers; or as it now stands, Scots Fusiliers. The regiment has, however, for many years past been composed principally of Scotchmen; and after the Crimean War the Queen's permission was given to the appointment of a band of pipers in Highland garb to each of the two battalions. But, as we have seen above, the Coldstreamers are the genuine Scotch corps. There is little known authoritatively about the movements of the Fusiliers previous to the time when they took up arms in the king's service as the Third Regiment of Foot Guards. Since that interesting and important event its brilliant services have equalled those of its sister regiments on every occasion.

The regimental badge is the star of the order of St Andrew, with the thistle, and the words,{25} 'Nemo me impune lacesset' (No one touches me with impunity). On its colours are the words Lincelles, Egypt (with the Sphinx), Talavera, Barrosa, Peninsula, Waterloo, Alma, Inkerman, and Sevastopol.

Here we must remark that time-honoured traditions are amongst the most treasured possessions of British regiments, for there is hardly a corps in our army without a history of its own. And by some means or another, every soldier, from the colonel to the smallest drummer-boy, who takes a pride in his profession, becomes acquainted with these traditions, and cherishes them with jealous care; for in those tattered colours which are borne proudly before him, he views the record and visible embodiment of deeds of valour, and resolves, when in the battle-field, that no action of his shall sully the proud history of his corps. Nelson's celebrated signal at Trafalgar trebled the strength and pluck of the force under his command; and so likewise, in the heat of a battle on land, the magic words 'Coldstreamers!' 'Fusiliers!' 'Black Watch!' (whichever the regiment may be) have precisely the same effect, by conjuring up in every man's breast that esprit de corps without which a regiment would be an utter nonentity. The soldier of every nation is, as a rule, very sensitive with regard to the name and distinctive badges of his regiment, and none more so than the British soldier. Take these away, as some have actually proposed to do; simply number the regiments from right to left; give them a universal badge, with clothing of the same pattern; or, in other words, destroy that regimental organisation which has made the British army famous, and much of the romance and heroism of the British soldier is gone.

The uniform of the Guards has undergone many changes since the Restoration, at which time it was of a very neat and picturesque character. The bearskin head-dress of the present day is a comparatively modern adoption, and was introduced into the English army by the Duke of Wellington, in imitation of those worn by Napoleon's Imperial Guard; while the present pattern tunic and waist-belt superseded the swallow-tailed coats and clumsy cross-belts which were in use so recently as the year 1855.

The three regiments, although doing duty principally in London, have at all critical moments in the nation's history been ordered abroad, to share in the glorious task of facing the foreign enemies of their country; and we find them acquitting themselves nobly beneath the banners of Marlborough, Moore, and Wellington. At the battle of Fontenoy occurred that ever-memorable scene, when for the first time the English and French Guards found themselves face to face, and both corps hesitated, from a noble sense of chivalry, to commence the attack. At length, Lord Charles Hay, a captain of the English Guards, called out: 'Gentlemen of the French Guards, fire!' But with characteristic courtesy and sang-froid, the French commander replied: 'Gentlemen, we never fire first; fire you first!'

The Coldstreamers and Fusiliers in 1801 proceeded to Egypt, where, beneath the shadow of the Pyramids, they gained fresh laurels against the French; and the former so distinguished themselves as to win the distinctive badge (a red plume) which they wear to this day on the right side of their bearskin caps. For their services in Egypt both corps were permitted to bear upon their colours the word 'Egypt' with the Sphinx above it. Again, all through the Peninsular War the Guards did gallant service, which culminated in that noble and irresistible charge at Waterloo which crushed Napoleon's power, and placed England upon the pinnacle of fame.

Many are the deeds of daring which have been done by individual members of these famous regiments, both officers and men; but as those of the former rarely fail to be blazoned forth to the world, it will be our pleasant task in these pages to record a few instances of the deeds performed by heroes of humbler rank. Unrecorded deeds are like hidden jewels, and it is not until they are exposed to the light of day, that the world marvels at their value and worships them accordingly. At Waterloo the defence of Hougoumont was intrusted to the flank companies of the brigade of Guards, for it was the key of the English position, and orders were issued that it was to be defended until not a stone was left of it. It consisted of an old farm-house and outlying buildings composed principally of wood; and no sooner were the Guards posted there, than they began to loop-hole the walls and make every preparation for its defence. Against this place Napoleon sent the finest of his troops, who, to the number of many thousands, made a desperate attack upon it, which lasted nearly the whole day. Again and again were the French repulsed, only to renew the onset with greater vigour and determination; but those five or six hundred Guardsmen were invincible in their dogged tenacity, and would not yield even when the buildings were blazing around them. In the midst of the mêlée, a young sergeant of the Grenadiers approached his commanding officer, and with tears in his eyes asked for a few moments' leave to perform a brotherly duty. The astonishment of the officer was great, for but a few moments before he had occasion to remark the bravery of his subordinate's conduct.

'It must be something very important to take you away from your duty at this critical moment,' said the officer with a gesture of impatience and a reproachful look.

'See!' said the sergeant, pointing to a building which was in flames from top to bottom; 'my brother lies there severely wounded, and in a few moments more the roof will fall in: am I not, sir, to make an effort to save him?'

'Go!' said the officer; 'and may you be successful.'

Away sprung the young soldier; and dashing into the midst of the flaming pile without the least hesitation, he emerged in a few seconds, singed and scorched all over, but bearing upon his shoulders a precious burden—his wounded and still living brother. Scarcely had he left the building ere the roof fell in with a terrific crash, that was heard above the crackling of muskets and the booming of artillery. Bearing his brother to a protected spot, he laid him gently down, and instantly rejoined his company, where he arrived just in time to save his captain's life!

In another part of the old farmyard of Hougoumont stood the heavy wooden gate, which, of course, became a special object of attack on the part of the French; and after several hours of hard and desperate fighting (during which{26} many useless attempts to open the gate had been made), they at last succeeded in forcing it. The moment was a critical one for the little garrison, and for a second or two, the defenders of the gate seemed stupefied; but there is, seemingly, a hero for every occasion, and a stout-built sergeant of the Coldstreams, named Graham, stepped forward just as the enemy began to push in at the gate, and placing his shoulder to the heavy structure, he, with almost superhuman energy, shut it against the foe. The shoulders of twenty or thirty stout men were instantly laid against the gate until it could be barricaded more strongly than before; and when the battle of Waterloo was won and lost, Hougoumont, though razed to the ground, remained untaken. In addition to this brave act, Sergeant Graham had also saved his captain's life several times during that eventful day; and when, some time afterwards, the Duke of Wellington was made trustee of a legacy of one hundred pounds left for the bravest man at Waterloo, and had sent it to Captain Macdonald (the commander at Hougoumont), the latter immediately returned it to the Duke with the reply, that Sergeant Graham was the hero of Waterloo, for he had by his own strength saved the British position. The sergeant eventually received the legacy and a commission.

At the battle of the Alma, on the 20th September 1854, numerous instances of bravery occurred in the ranks of the Guards, foremost amongst which was the act of Sergeant Davis of the Scots Fusiliers, who, when the officer who was carrying the regimental colour was surrounded by the Russians and shot down, seized the sacred emblem of his regiment's honour, and battling his way forward single-handed, planted it triumphantly on the summit of the hard-won height.

At Inkerman, the soldiers' battle, the brave Coldstreamers—George Monk's Nulli Secundus men—made heroes of themselves, and immortalised their name. They went into action with sixteen officers and four hundred men; and of this small number they had thirteen officers and more than two hundred men killed and wounded. Eight of these officers were killed, amongst them being Colonels Cowell, Elliott, and Mackinnon, who fell in the act of leading their men on to the charge. At length the Grenadiers and Fusiliers, after much severe fighting, cut their way to the spot where their gallant comrades were being annihilated. Thus united, the three regiments bore down upon the enemy in a line of single file (so fearfully had they suffered), and beat them back down the ravine.

When peace was proclaimed the Guards returned home to receive the well-earned reward of their prowess. All London turned out to welcome them, and a right hearty welcome it was. Her Majesty the Queen and the Prince Consort witnessed the march of the three regiments from the balcony of Buckingham Palace, and the former waved her handkerchief to the brave fellows, as they passed on their way to Hyde Park, with their ranks broken by the people, who, in their enthusiasm, demanded to shake hands with the popular heroes. In Hyde Park, they were received by the home battalions with military honours, and were afterwards reviewed by the Queen, when, as a mark of high honour, the Crimean battalions were permitted to march past their sovereign with their tattered ensigns flying instead of being lowered in the usual way. They had nobly shewn their fidelity to Queen and country, and those flying colours was a simple but touching acknowledgment of the fact. Indeed, the reception of these regiments was quite an ovation; and never had soldiers better deserved the honours bestowed upon them.


Five years ago the only means by which communication was kept up between the rapidly growing settlement of Yokohama and the capital of the empire, Yedo, was by the Tocaido—the great main road—or by sea. As the steamers on the latter route were under Japanese guidance, and as blowings-up and runnings-ashore were unpleasantly frequent, the majority of travellers chose the land-route. And even by this way the annoyances and accidents were so serious and so frequent, that few, except those who had pressing business on hand, or who were ardent explorers, chose to leave the security of the European settlement at all; so it may be said that until the introduction of railways, Yedo remained almost unknown to Europeans. A rackety four-horse van, barring accidents, made the journey and returned every day. The road was execrable, and the people of the villages along the route generally ill-disposed to 'white barbarians.' A week of fierce sun converted the track into a bed of dust, a day of rain turned it into an almost impassable quagmire. Overturnings and break-downs were of daily occurrence; and the safe arrival at the capital was hailed as an unlooked-for pleasure and surprise. English enterprise, however, backed by English gold, has changed the order of things; and the pilgrimage which formerly occupied five hours and cost ten dollars may now be performed in forty minutes by rail at the comparatively reasonable price of one dollar.

The Yokohama terminus is admirably suited to the requirements of the public, and it is difficult to stand there, surrounded by waiting-rooms, cloak-rooms, refreshment-rooms, and ticket-offices, jostled by diminutive natives clad in the orthodox British porter costume, reading by-laws, advertisements, and notices in English, and realise the fact that one is in the mystic land of Japan, fifteen thousand miles from Ludgate Hill, King's Cross, or Edinburgh.

Everything is British belonging to the railway itself. The locomotives are Sheffield built, and are driven by brawny specimens of the Anglo-Saxon race, aided by native stokers. The carriages are from Birmingham—constructed on the American principle—that is, with a passage running from end to end, so that the guard may walk through the train. Every signal-post, switch, and lamp comes from England. The officials are almost without exception 'Samourai'—men of good birth, and have taken wonderfully to their change of profession; the guards are even learning to jump in and out of the trains when in motion with the precision and agility of those at home. In fact during the short journey between Yokohama and Yedo one is transported for a while into the old country; and one only has to shut the eyes to the quaint forms and faces of the passengers and the peculiarity of the scenery, to make the illusion complete.


Leaving Yokohama, the train crosses the spit of land connecting the settlement with the promontory known as Kawasaki Point, passes through the pleasure part of the town—a sort of suburb, consisting entirely of large tea-houses and places of entertainment, and stops at the first station, Kanagawa. This was originally intended to be the foreign port, but objections were raised by the European merchants that the depth of water was insufficient to admit of large vessels anchoring conveniently near, so that, in spite of government opposition, the present port of Yokohama was chosen. To this day, however, all official documents are dated from Kanagawa, and not from Yokohama.

Kanagawa, a long straggling village on the Tocaido or great road, has always been a hotbed of disaffection towards foreigners. Many a bloody record still tells of the days when the proud 'Samourai' or officers felt that they were scarcely doing their duty towards their country in allowing a European to pass unmolested on the road; and even now, though feudalism, Samourai, and all have been swept away by the march of civilisation, one cannot ride or walk along the narrow street without being saluted as a 'beast' or 'foreign invader.' The temples which were the first residences of the foreign consuls still exist, but the natives have carefully wiped away all traces of foreign occupation, and they are now used, as formerly, for purposes of Buddhist or 'Shinto' worship. From Kanagawa the railway passes under the great road, and enters a broad fertile plain ablaze with many tinted crops, fringed on the left hand by a picturesque range of hills, and bounded on the right by the sea. The peasants are becoming accustomed to the sight of the locomotive and its string of carriages, and rarely stop on their path or rest from their work to gaze at what was but a few months back a wonderful phenomenon. But the pack-horses are less tractable, and dance and pirouette in all directions till the noise is over.

Tsurumi, a little village, also on the Tocaido, is the next station. It is the centre of the snipe district, and on Saturdays and Sundays the little platform is crowded with knickerbockered Britons with their dogs; Frenchmen, fantastically arrayed in sporting costume; Israelites; sailors and soldiers from the men-of-war in harbour, armed with every variety of rifle, musket, or blunderbuss, all bent on wading through the 'paddy' mud in the hopes of making some sort of a bag.

From Tsurumi, the train glides through a delicious stretch of scenery—on the one side little villages nestle amidst the trees, and the deep blue ocean glitters away into the distance; on the other, all is a romantic jumble of hill, and wood, and dale. Here and there a red temple roof breaks the sombre verdure of the hill-side, and at a certain point a depression of the hills affords the traveller a peep at the distant goblin-haunted range of mountains of which Oyama is the chief, behind which the pure white cone of the sacred mountain Fuji rises, solitary and grand, like a monarch in repose. All around is pure unadulterated rusticity. The iron road cuts remorselessly through pleasant vales and wooded hills, but nothing is changed; and if the visitor will take the trouble to explore on either side, he will find the old-world life of Japan still existing as it did centuries ago, when the only Europeans in the land were a few Portuguese missionaries and a small colony of Dutch traders cooped up in an island at Nagasaki.

After a fifteen minutes' run through this charming country, Kawasaki—exactly half-way between Yokohama and Yedo—is reached. Here the down-train from the capital meets us, and there is a stop of a few minutes.

Kawasaki was in the old days one of the most important towns on the great road. On their way from Kiyoto to Yedo, from the western capital to the eastern, the great lords made Kawasaki their last halting-place, and one may yet see the shadows of the great feudal age of Japan in the magnificent tea-houses scattered through the town. Like the old coaching inns on our great main roads in England, these tea-houses have lost almost all their ancient prosperity, as the turmoil of revolution, and above all the accomplishment of the railway, have diverted almost all the traffic from this part of the Tocaido. In one or two of the houses, however, splendidly adorned and painted suites of apartments, pretty gardens, and huge ranges of out-buildings, still attest the former splendour of the age; and although fowls and half-wild curs have made the stabling and out-houses their home, and although the numerical strength of the domestics is not sufficient to keep the dust and cobwebs away from the gaily screened rooms, the proprietors still shew the remains with some pride, and at the instigation of a cup of 'saké' will tell many a quaint story of the doings in those half-forgotten days and sigh that they can never return.

Moreover Kawasaki is the starting-point for pilgrims to two of the most celebrated shrines in this part of the country, so that notwithstanding the decay of its prosperity, Kawasaki is still sufficiently full of life and animation, well fitted to repay a visit from the student of Japanese life and manners. Within ten minutes' walk rises the huge fane of Kobo-Daishi, a Buddhist saint of great renown and the reputed originator of the syllabary now in common use. Hither repair on certain days annually, from all parts of the empire, troops of pilgrims of both sexes and all ages, attired in holiday costume, and though nominally on devotional exercise bent, from the exuberance of their spirits and the time they pass in the surrounding pleasure-houses, not at all inclined to forego the enjoyment of a holiday.

Farther away from the town is the almost equally celebrated shrine of Ikigami, dedicated to Iyeyas, the great self-raised priest who founded the Tokugawa line of emperors, beautifully situated on a solitary deeply wooded hill. This is one of the sweetest spots near Yokohama. The most complete calm reigns over everything, only broken occasionally by the tinkle of the old temple bell and the monotonous drone of the officiating priests, or by the wind murmuring through the great trees. Scattered about around a pagoda of quaint proportions are the tombs of many of the old feudal lords—quaint curious examples of that reverence for the dead so characteristic of the Japanese as of all oriental nations. Except during the pilgrim season, until the opening of the railway, one might wander about these solitudes for hours without any chance of being disturbed. Now, however, that the railway has brought Ikigami within easy access of{28} Yokohama, the graves on the hill have become a favourite resort of picnic parties and pleasure-seekers from the great foreign settlement. New tea-houses have sprung up around the base of the hill, and the place is rapidly assuming the tea-garden character which has too often degraded beautiful spots near Yokohama. At Kawasaki, the river runs which nominally is the boundary beyond which foreigners may not explore. The law insisting on this, however, is far more honoured in the breach than in the observance, and not a day passes without scores of foreigners crossing the new bridge.

From Kawasaki the train speeds through huge apple-orchards, till the houses become more frequent and less detached, and now skirting the sea, one visibly approaches a large city, close to which are anchored men-of-war, merchant-vessels, and junks.

The train stops at Shinagawa, the last station, at which, from its want of interest, there is but little temptation for the visitor to alight. The only pleasing bit to break the monotony of dull-coloured hovels is the stately demesne and foreign-built mansion of one of the most ardent supporters of the 'Advance' School of Japanese politicians. Soldiers, coolies, and low-class women seem to compose the street population of this suburb; whilst every other house is either a 'rowdy' tea-house or a 'buvette' of the commonest type. Equestrians and pedestrians therefore, if Europeans, may look out for a repetition of the scowls and abuse of Kanagawa. Leaving the station, and proceeding towards the terminus within the city gates, the train passes the temple, formerly the seat of the British Legation, where the murderous attack was made by hired bravoes of the anti-European party in Japan on Sir Rutherford Alcock and suite, some years back. Farther on a collection of hovels—for otherwise they cannot be designated—situated on a high hill, was, till a year ago, the seat of English diplomatic power in Japan.

The train passes on over the sites of old 'Yashikis' or palaces, and through the once extensive hunting-grounds of the great prince of Tosa, skims the vast barren tract which still marks the disastrous fire of 1871, and finally enters the Yedo terminus. The station is the exact counterpart of that at Yokohama, and is situated in the busiest part of the capital, close to the 'Foreign Concession,' where the Europeans chiefly reside, and within ten minutes' walk of the celebrated 'Nihon Bashi' or Bridge of Japan, from which all distances in the empire are measured. Outside the station are waiting carriages, 'Jinrickishas'—or chairs on wheels dragged by coolies—breaks, and even a Hammersmith built omnibus; so that the traveller has but to take his choice and be taken anywhere. The Japanese and, strange to say, the Chinese (who have only just permitted a line to be made on their sacred soil) have taken wonderfully to travelling by railway. All classes avail themselves of it; and it is sometimes amusing to observe how Young Japan tries to assume an air of nonchalance, and endeavours to appear as if he had been accustomed to railways all his life. Every train is crowded, especially on Sundays; and the pilgrims bound for the capital from Mount Fuji or Oyama, hail the foreign engine and train waiting for them at Kanagawa as a godsend and a saving of many hours of weary travelling and, what is more important, much cash. The childish delight of the natives at being rattled over the ground at twenty miles an hour is ludicrous; and although the novelty has worn off, there are still numbers who simply travel up and down the line for the sake of the sensation.



Mr John Williams, landlord of the Ship and Anchor, Lleyrudrigg, had not deceived the little minister and myself with regard to the qualifications of his horse. It was a high-stepping thoroughbred; and notwithstanding that the roads were heavy with the rain of the previous day, we bowled along next morning at a famous rate on our way to Twellryst. Clouds of a somewhat suspicious character floated overhead, occasionally depriving us for a space of the sunshine, and the wind was perhaps too high to be altogether agreeable. But on the whole the weather was favourable; and enlivened by Mr Morgan's instructive and cheerful conversation, the day's trip promised to prove a pleasant one. For some time after leaving Lleyrudrigg we followed the regular coach-road, which, though running for a little way on a line with the coast, very soon turns inland. Then quitting it for one upon which was much less traffic, we found ourselves, at the close of three hours' quick driving, again coming within sight of the blue ocean with its foam-flecked billows, and were told by Jonathan Williams, our hunch-backed, sinister-looking little driver, that we were nearing the Spike Rocks. The Spike Rocks! how I shudder at the bare mention of that name, recalling as it does—— But I will not anticipate. Drawing up before a five-barred gate which led into an extensive piece of meadow-land bordering the shore and, as I afterwards found, crowning precipices which for nearly a mile in length descended in sheer walls to the sea, Jonathan rose in his seat, and pointed out with his whip the two rocks which we had come hither to visit. They stood at some distance from the land—small, conical-shaped islands, bleak and sharp-pointed—their interest consisting, as we had been told, in their being a peculiarly favourite resort of a species of sea-bird. At certain seasons of the year, of which the present was one, the birds would collect here in thousands, covering the rocks from base to summit with a compact living mantle of whity-brown feathers. From the point at which our carriage stopped, however, the rocks were too far away for their clothing to be clearly visible; and we accordingly set off for a nearer inspection, warned by a shout from our driver, when we had taken a few steps, to beware of the 'Devil's Holes.' (So Mr Morgan translated the barbarous-sounding Welsh word he used.) 'Devil's Holes! Why, what can they be?' I inquired. But my companion was no wiser with regard to the matter than myself, as he confessed with a shake of the head; so we walked on, trusting to our observation for enlightenment.


The enlightenment came sooner than we anticipated, and was accompanied for me by a great shock. Under the influence of my new friend's inspiriting society, I was feeling a light-heartedness to which I had long been a stranger; and upon observing before me a small round hollow in the field we were crossing, I was seized with a momentary impulse to run forward, as I might have done when a boy, and let the impetus of descending the near side carry me up the sloping grassy bank which I saw upon the farther one. Had I followed out that impulse, however, I should not now have been writing this story; for when close upon it, but not before, I perceived to my horror that the innocently seeming indentation of the ground was in reality an awful natural pit. Where the grassy slope terminated, instead of the green level I had expected to see, yawned a black chasm; and looking downwards, I positively trembled as my eye sank into an abyss some hundred feet in depth, at the bottom of which, as though it had been a gigantic caldron, appeared a seething mass of water, rolling and dashing itself against the rocky sides, and sending up a booming sound like the explosion of cannon.

An exclamation of horror burst from my lips as this unexpected phenomenon met my sight, and drawing Mr Morgan backwards, I nervously entreated him not to stand so near the edge. That 'Devil's Hole' had filled me with the strangest sensation of creeping dread; and when presently we came upon a second hollow in the meadow, I shrank from approaching it. The little minister, however, would not be deterred from doing so; and from the manner in which I saw him walking round and round, curiously peering over its side, I was prepared for the announcement which he made upon rejoining me, that that too was a 'Devil's Hole'—larger but in other respects similar to the one I had seen. An involuntary shiver was almost the only comment I made upon this communication; and as we continued our course, I looked apprehensively in all directions for further suspicious undulations of the ground. But none presented themselves; for like the Spike Rocks, these holes are but two in number; and when we had taken a survey of the Rocks—to my mind the lesser curiosities of the district—we returned to our dog-cart.

Words can scarcely express the relief I experienced as I felt myself being carried swiftly away from the neighbourhood of these horrible pits. The state of my health possibly may have had something to do with it; but my imagination certainly had been powerfully impressed with what was perhaps an exaggerated idea of their danger, and throughout the remainder of our drive I could talk of little else. Interested only in a lesser degree than myself, Mr Morgan joined me in conjectures as to the way in which they had been formed; the probable depth of water contained in them; the manner in which they were connected with the sea, and so forth. But though each of us endeavoured by turns to draw Jonathan into the conversation, in order to extract information from him, our dwarfish driver either could not or would not afford us any. He did not know, he said, whether or not there had ever been an accident at the spot, and replied to all our questions with a shortness which—considering that he had chattered incessantly during the former part of the journey—made me think that for some reason or other the subject must be distasteful to him.

Upon reaching Twellryst the little minister and I separated, with the understanding that we were to meet again at the inn at which we had put up, at four in the afternoon—that hour being as late a one as we thought it wise to appoint, on account of the necessity of getting back to Lleyrudrigg that night.

A careful exploration of the ruins, which turned out to be very interesting; a walk in the country; and a saunter round the town, filled up my time very agreeably; and arriving exactly as the clock struck the appointed hour, I found Mr Morgan already at the rendezvous. Our conveyance was then called for; but to our annoyance, the driver was not forthcoming. He had strolled away from the hotel some time ago, we were told; and when, eventually, the search for him ended in his discovery in a neighbouring public-house, he appeared to be a good deal the worse for liquor. The delay thus occasioned in starting upon our backward journey was the more vexatious because of the threatening aspect which during the last hour the weather had been assuming. Thick dark clouds had gradually spread themselves over the entire sky, and the wind, as it moaned amongst the trees of a neighbouring orchard or whistled round the corners of the inn, had a decidedly stormy sound. Naturally I am rather a passionate man, and at the time of which I write my private troubles made me more than usually prone to irritation. It is scarcely to be wondered at then, that when, upon my friend's calling Jonathan's attention to these signs of the times, I observed an impish look of satisfaction stealing over his face as though he were inwardly rejoicing in the anticipation of our getting a good wetting, in return for the scolding we had given him. Indeed, I had some difficulty in restraining my inclination to seize his horse-whip and lay it across his shoulders. I did restrain it, however; and when ready at length, we set off at full speed. This was so well kept up by Mr Williams's excellent horse, that although we could not hope to escape a drenching, we began to congratulate ourselves that after all we might get to Lleyrudrigg before very late in the evening.

We had been for more than an hour upon the road and had made first-rate progress, when on a sudden the looked-for storm broke upon us with the utmost violence. In a few moments the wind had risen to a hurricane, rendering our umbrellas entirely useless; and it was only by enveloping ourselves in a large horse-rug with which the landlord had provided us, that the little Welshman and I had any chance of keeping dry. Taking off our hats, we passed the rug over our heads, and had been riding in this way for a considerable distance, when my companion observed that the vehicle was jolting very much; and removing the covering from my face, I saw that{30} we had turned off the highway into a narrow lane. On being questioned by Mr Morgan, to whom I uneasily communicated this fact, Jonathan declared that the lane was a short cut which would presently bring us out again upon the road we had quitted. I can scarcely tell why, but from the very first I doubted the correctness of this statement; and when, after twisting and turning times without number, the lane appeared yet as far as ever from its promised termination, my suspicions became confirmed. That our driver was purposely taking us in a wrong direction, I could hardly think, since I could conceive of no object for his doing so; but that he had, either through drunkenness or carelessness, lost his way, I felt assured. Bending forward, I angrily charged him with the mistake; and though at first holding doggedly to his former assertion, he admitted by-and-by that he thought he must have turned up the wrong lane—adding, however, that as I might see for myself, he could not get his horse round in so confined a space, and would be obliged therefore to drive onwards. That obligation I was of course forced to allow; and muttering something as like an anathema as my clerical character would permit me to use, I re-covered my head and resigned myself, along with my more even-tempered associate, to the inevitable. But our misadventures were not to end with this contretemps. We were still in the lane, and had been going more and more slowly on account of its increasing roughness, when all at once the dwarf affirmed that something was wrong with the horse's right fore-foot, and precipitately descended to examine it. The examination occupied a long time; and peering from beneath the sheltering rug, I noticed Jonathan's arm working about as he bent over the hoof he had raised, and thought I distinguished, mingling with the roar of the wind, a faint sound as of grating metal. I remarked upon this to Mr Morgan, and we both called out to inquire what was the matter. But the fellow would vouchsafe us no reply until he had remounted to his seat, when he informed us sulkily that the shoe upon that foot was coming loose, and that he had been trying to refasten it. Apparently, however, he had not succeeded to his satisfaction, for he shortly got down to look at it again, and kept on repeating the action at intervals. At length just as we emerged from that seemingly interminable lane, the horse stumbled slightly; and once more descending from his box, the hunchback, with an ejaculation, in which it struck me there was a tone of triumph, brought forward the shoe, which had now indeed come off.

For a few moments the little minister and I sat in silence interchanging glances of dismay, which it was becoming almost too dark to read. Then simultaneously, we inquired of Jonathan what was to be done. The driver's answer was prompt and decisive. We must, he said, stop at the first house we came to and beg a night's lodging, since upon no account dared he proceed towards home at the risk of laming the horse. His cousin, he added, would be furious should any harm come to it, as it was very valuable, and he was, besides, much attached to it. Recognising its necessity, we acquiesced in this plan without demur, and in fact without unwillingness, the idea of a speedy shelter from the still violent storm being by no means ungrateful. But where, the question remained, could that shelter be found? We rose in the dog-cart, looked eagerly to right and left, but could discern no habitation. Jonathan, however, after applying himself to a similar scrutiny, declared that he perceived, just beyond a small plantation or orchard, about a hundred yards distant, what he felt sure was the corner of a building; and taking the horse by the bridle, he led it in that direction. His keener sight, as we shortly found, had not deceived him. When upon stopping again, we displaced the rug in which we had once more enveloped ourselves from head to foot, we saw in front of us, through the battering rain and gathering gloom, a low straggling farm-house.

A small garden, entered by a wicket-gate, led to the door; and begging us to sit still, Jonathan ran towards it, returning almost immediately with the information that we could be accommodated here for the night. Blessing our good fortune, we accordingly alighted, and were met, as we passed into the house, by a hard-featured elderly man in a smock-frock and leathern gaiters, who after bestowing upon us a gruff welcome, shewed us into a large sanded kitchen. An unpleasant odour of bad beer and stale tobacco greeted our entrance, and my first impression, in the uncertain light which filled it, was that the apartment contained a numerous company. Upon candles being produced, however, as they speedily were by the farmer's direction, its occupants resolved themselves into seven. These were, a stout red-visaged woman, the wife of our host; and six tall strongly built young men, varying in ages from sixteen to thirty-five—his sons. With much courtesy the whole family proceeded at once to busy themselves for our comfort—one of the sons placing chairs for us in front of the peat-fire, another assisting to remove our damp coats and hang them to dry, whilst a couple more accompanied Jonathan to an out-building, where our horse and carriage were to be disposed for the night. The woman, upon her part, hastened to prepare us something to eat; and grateful for all this attention, Mr Morgan (whom I began by this time to look upon as quite an old friend) chatted away to our entertainers in his usually pleasant manner. I too for a while exerted myself towards their amusement, giving them an account of our day's excursion, and speaking of other matters which I thought calculated to interest. But with the exception of the woman, who had a harsh disagreeable voice, and was sufficiently loquacious, none of the party possessed much conversational power, and the talk gradually flagged.

Upon lapsing into silence, the men's faces naturally fell into their ordinary expressions, and as my gaze now wandered from one to another, a feeling of dislike and mistrust of the entire group seized upon me. The feeling was one that I could not well account for, and for which indeed I blamed myself severely. Nevertheless, far from diminishing as the evening wore on, it increased to an almost painful degree; and upon my mind suddenly reverting to the large sum of money carried by my companion, I took an opportunity of anxiously whispering him to beware of any allusion to it. The suggestion implied in this warning appeared to startle the little minister; but his nature was eminently trustful, and as I could see, a short cogitation ended in his mentally condemning my suspicion as uncalled for. Shortly after it{31} had been uttered, however, he proposed, to my satisfaction, that we should go to bed; whereupon the farmer (whose face and figure, though I knew I had never seen him before this evening, seemed somehow familiar) slipped from the room, and returning directly with a black bottle in his hand, pressed us before retiring to rest to take a glass of spirits. Being a teetotaler, I declined for myself the proffered hospitality. But thinking, as he remarked, that it might prevent his taking cold from the wetting he had sustained, Mr Morgan accepted a somewhat stiff tumbler of whisky-punch. This, in order not to keep me waiting, he drained almost at a draught; and our host then preceding us to an upper story, pointed out the rooms in which we were to sleep. They were situated at each end of a long passage; the first, which opened at the head of a rather steep flight of stairs, being assigned to my companion, and the farther one to myself. Upon following Mr Morgan into his chamber for the purpose of bidding him good-night, I noticed with astonishment that he staggered slightly in crossing the floor. He complained too, as we shook hands, of feeling 'terribly sleepy;' and smiling to myself at the rapidity with which the whisky-punch was taking effect upon the little Welshman, I recommended him in an under-tone to lock his door; and leaving him to his slumbers, betook myself, under the farmer's guidance, to the apartment appointed for my own occupation.


Proud Wolsey, it will be recollected, was on familiar terms with a venerable carp; Cowper doffed his melancholy to play with his hares; and Clive owned a pet tortoise. Less noted folk have taken kindly to snakes, frogs, lizards, hedgehogs, and other animals not usually included in the category of domestic pets. The driver of a London Hansom was wont to carry a little cub fox on the top of his cab, to their mutual enjoyment, until returning from the Downs one Derby-day, the cab overset, and the cabman and his odd companion were both killed. Mr G. F. Berkeley made a household pet of a young stoat, rendered motherless by his gun. Totie soon accommodated himself to circumstances, and would leave his cage to wash himself in a finger-glass on the dinner-table, trotting back again as soon as his ablutions were performed, taking a piece of sponge-cake with him.

Sir John Lubbock contrived to win the affection of a Syrian wasp; but the game was hardly worth the candle, or sufficiently entertaining to encourage others to follow suit; although it is said that, strong in the new feminine faith that what man does woman can do, three maiden sisters sought to relieve the tedium of single-blessedness by devoting their leisure to the domestication of English-born wasps. Before a week was out, one fair experimentalist wore a large blue patch over her left eye, another carried her right arm in a sling, the third was altogether lost to the sight of anxious friends, and all had come to the conclusion that wasp-taming was not their forte. Better taste and greater discretion were shewn by the lady, who, becoming possessed of two butterflies of different species in a chrysalis state, resolved to try how far they would be amenable to kindness, and placed them for security in a glazed cabinet in her well-warmed bedroom. A few days before Christmas she was delighted by the appearance of a little yellow butterfly, but was puzzled how to cater for the delicate creature. Taking a fairy-rose then in bloom, she dropped a little honey and rose-water in a blossom, and put the plant in the cabinet, and soon had the satisfaction of seeing the butterfly take its first meal. In a fortnight it would leave the rose to settle on her hand when she called it by its name Psyche. By-and-by a peacock butterfly emerged into active life from the other chrysalis. The newcomer accepted the sensation of active life at once, and like its companion, delighted in being talked and sung to, both especially enjoying being waved in the air and danced up and down while quietly resting upon the hand of their mistress. Upon the coming of summer the cabinet was moved close to the window, and its doors thrown open. For some days neither of its tenants cared to venture beyond the window-sill, but one bright afternoon their protectress 'with many bitter tears' beheld them take wing and join some wild companions in the garden; at night, however, they returned to their lodgings. Next day they took the air again, and were not seen until September. One afternoon there came a heavy thunderstorm, and when it was over a yellow butterfly was found dead on the window-sill—which the lady, with some warrant, lamented over as her own particular one; the 'peacock' too would seem to have met a like fate, for it was never seen again.

The butterfly tamer had an eye for beauty, but ugliness is no bar to a lady's favour, so far as animal pets are concerned. It would be hard to find a more repulsive-looking reptile than the iguana, nevertheless the society of one afforded much pleasure to an American lady residing in Brazil. Pedro, as he was called, was well provided with raw meat, bananas, and milk; allowed to bask in his mistress's room in the daytime, and to make himself cosy between the mattresses of her bed when the sun went down, he cheerfully accepted the novel situation, like a wise iguana. His loving lady was wont to carry him abroad in her arms—a practice that kept acquaintances at a respectful distance—for, however they might pretend to admire Pedro's beadlike spots of black and white, his bright jewelled eyes, and elegant claws, they were careful not to make any near approaches. Nothing pleased Madame so much as to drop her pet without warning at the feet of unsuspecting gentlemen, and elicit from naval officers symptoms of terror such as would not have been drawn forth by an enemy's broadside or a lee-shore. Of course Pedro came to grief. Rambling one day unattended, he came across 'a marauding Frenchman,' his owner's maid arriving only in time to rescue his lifeless body. It was sent, wrapped in black crape, to a neighbour with a weakness for fricasseed lizard; but having seen this especial one fondled{32} and caressed, he could not find the appetite to eat it; and so Pedro was consigned to the earth instead of the pot.

De Candolle tells of a fair Switzer who, unmindful of Red Riding Hood's sad fate, made a companion of a young wolf, and had the melancholy satisfaction of seeing the fond beast fall dead at her feet in a paroxysm of joy at her return home after a long absence. But although one wolf was faithful found, it does not follow that the fair sex are justified in going to the forest or jungle for pets. The proprietress of a loving leopard that came regularly to her chamber door in the dead of the night, and howled loudly enough to wake the Seven Sleepers, until its mistress turned out of bed and quieted her disturber with an offering of warm milk, might well doubt if she had bestowed her affection wisely. Such favourites, however kindly they take to domestication, are very undesirable additions to an orderly establishment. When Captain Burton was domiciled in Syria, the famous traveller left the management of his live-stock to his wife, and under her fostering care that department assumed formidable proportions. Not content with horses and goats, a camel, turkeys, geese, ducks, fowls, and pigeons, Mrs Burton must have her own especial pets—a white donkey, a young St Bernard dog, four English terriers, a Kurdish puppy, a snow-white Persian cat, a lamb, and a leopard. The last-named, according to the lady's account, became the pet of the household; which it deserved to be, if the household abhorred a quiet life, for the leopard behaved much after the manner of the gazelle whose owner sang:

He riled the dog, annoyed the cat,
And scared the goldfinch into fits;
He butted through my newest hat,
And tore my manuscript to bits!

Mrs Burton, with pretty good grace, confesses her husband had fair cause for saying his happy family reminded him of the House that Jack built; for the fowls and pigeons ate the seeds and destroyed the flowers; the cat fed upon the pigeons, the dogs worried the cat; while the idol of the household harried the goats until one of them drowned itself in sheer disgust, and frightened the donkey and camel by jumping upon their backs, and indulging in a shrieking solo, horrible enough to scare any animal of a well-regulated mind into madness.

Lady Hornby, while ambassadress at Constantinople, obtained, as she thought, a Turkish street dog, with whom she was soon on the best of terms. Introducing her pet to a gentleman who knew a dog when he saw one, he exclaimed: 'That's no dog; it is a common brute of a wild jackal!' 'Well,' rejoined the enlightened lady, 'anyhow, I have tamed him, and dog or jackal, don't mean to part with him!'

It was to her husband that Mr Frank Buckland was indebted for the Kurdish dog, whose prowess delighted him, despite the trouble entailed by its exhibition; for Arslan, imbued with the notion that he was created to rid the earth of his kind, conscientiously tried to fulfil his mission by killing every dog so unlucky as to cross his path. Fortunately for his master's serenity, Arslan's unkind attentions were confined to his own species; otherwise there would have been anything but joy in the house of Buckland, since that general lover of animal-kind was never yet without pet bears, beavers, or monkeys, calculated to excite the ire of a brave dog; and priding himself upon the brown rats, black rats, piebald rats, and white rats with pink eyes, which swarmed to the door of their cage to welcome his coming, and allowed him to handle them as he listed, while at the advent of a stranger they were up on their hind-legs in fighting position instanter.

Much, however, as he loved them, they increased and multiplied so quickly that Mr Buckland was by cruel necessity compelled, now and again, to carry a bagful away wherewith to regale the snakes of the Zoological Gardens; a method of riddance unavailable to the gentleman who tried his hand at porcupine-petting, and found the creature thoroughly deserved Shakspeare's epithet of 'fretful,' its inquisitiveness and restlessness rendering it the most unpleasant of all quadrupedal pets.

Strange pets usually come to some untimely end; as Miller Luke says, 'Things out o' natur never thrive.' But your animal lover need not go far afield for worthy objects upon which to expend his kind care, for he was a wise man who wrote, 'If we were to pet our useful and hard-working animals, we should find it both to our credit and advantage.'


This year—Next year—Some time—Never.
How I laughed at some one's folly,
As in play he read my fortune,
On a leaf of shining holly.
'Next Year!' said the leaf prophetic;
'Next year,' softly whispered some one,
While I said, with voice coquettish:
'I shall wed next year with no one.
'Christmas comes, and Christmas goeth;
You shall see—for I have said it—
When the next year's Christmas cometh,
It shall find me still unwedded.'
.       .       .       .
But the Spring-time came with blossoms,
Left a bud so sweetly hidden,
Which the perfumed breath of Summer
Fanned into a flower unbidden.
And when Autumn's golden glory
Gleamed o'er fields and purple heather,
Then our love reached its fulfilment
When two hands were clasped together.
And the frosts and snows of Winter
Brought us not one thought of sadness,
For the outer desolation
Made more bright the inner gladness.
Christmas came! and some one fastened
In my hair a leaflet golden:
'Wear this as a penance, darling,
For the sake of memories olden.'

H. K. W.

Printed and Published by W. & R. Chambers, 47 Paternoster Row, London, and 339 High Street, Edinburgh.