The Project Gutenberg EBook of Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 20, No. 33,
November 1877, by Various

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Title: Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 20, No. 33, November 1877

Author: Various

Release Date: November 17, 2012 [EBook #41387]

Language: English

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Table of Contents and List of Illustrations Added by Transcriber.


NOVEMBER, 1877 Vol XX—No. 33

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1877,
J.B. Lippincott & Co., in the Office of the
Librarian of Congress, at Washington.


CHESTER AND THE DEE. by Lady Blanche Murphy.
BADEN AND ALLERHEILIGEN. by T. Adolphus Trollope.
SONG. by Oscar Laighton.
THE DREAM OF ST. THERESA. poem by Epes Sargent.
THE FLIGHT OF A PRINCESS. by W.A. Baillie-Grohman.
A KENTUCKY DUEL. by Will Wallace Harney.
THE CHEF'S BEEFSTEAK. by Virginia W. Johnson.
by C. Rosell.
A LAW UNTO HERSELF. by Rebecca Harding Davis.
Books Received.
New Music.






The "city of the legions" still bears traces of the Roman dominion, more proud of them than were the spirited Britons in the days when these walls and other Roman buildings meant subjection to a foreign power. The walls, which are nearly perfect, now provide a pleasant walk for the citizens, a surface five or six feet broad, with a coped parapet or iron railing on either side, and trees almost as old as the walls overshadowing some parts of them. The old gates have been destroyed or removed, and three modern archways now pierce the walls; but the memory of the ancient city defences lingers in the names of some of the principal streets—Northgate, Foregate, Bridgegate, Watergate streets, etc. The Dee was approached by two of these gates, one of which opened at the lower end of Bridge street on the old bridge, which still remains, while Watergate street was similarly connected with the river. Here stands the same old tower—Water Tower—which in mediæval times served to defend the gate. A Roman column and base, like that discovered in Bridge street, stand near it among the formal evergreens, and a strange low building, seemingly entire, which distinguishes this opening, is called by antiquaries a hypocaust or Roman warming apparatus. The walls of the tower still exhibit iron staples, showing that ships were anciently moored at this place, but the river has considerably receded since these were used, for even during the civil wars there was a wide space between the tower and the shore. Another of the old towers, the Phœnix, now called King Charles's Tower, is memorable as the spot whence Charles I. watched the defeat of his troops by Cromwell on Rowton Heath or Moor. It is approached by a small stone staircase with a wooden railing, and is only large enough to hold a dozen men. The ruins of St. John's, the old Norman cathedral—the church to which King Edgar, before it had become a bishop's seat, rowed up the river with six Welsh kings as his oarsmen, himself steering the barque—are very imposing, although here and there improvements of questionable taste have been added. The new park laid out around them sets them off to great advantage, and though the date of the architecture of Harold's Chapel disproves the legend attached to it, one is none the less glad to be reminded of the obstinate love and loyalty of Englishmen to the unsuccessful hero of the battle of Hastings. He was said to have fled to Chester, and lived as a hermit in a chapel near this cathedral: as to his widow, her stay in Chester after her husband's defeat and death is an historical fact. Harold shared the same poetical fate as Arthur, Charlemagne and Barbarossa, and for over a century he was believed by the people to be alive and plotting. Higden, the chronicler of St. Werburgh's Abbey (the church which since Henry VIII. has been the cathedral, and itself stood on the site of an older church dedicated in Roman and British times to Saints Peter and Paul), naturally adopted the legend and versified it. In Saxon times, though the city was included in a large diocese, St. Chad, which ruled all the kingdom of Mercia, it was practically independent, and in the possession of various monastic houses. Of these, the greatest was the abbey of St. Werburgh. Its shrine was the goal of pilgrimages, and is said to have been endowed by the daughter of King Alfred. The present building dates from the days of William Rufus, when Hugh d'Avranches—or Lupus, as he was surnamed—earl of Chester, and one of the Conqueror's old companions, became a monk in his newly-endowed abbey, which he peopled with Benedictine monks from Bec in Normandy. Thus, sturdy British Chester is connected ecclesiastically with the first two and perhaps greatest archbishops of Canterbury, Lanfranc and Anselm, both of whom were successively abbots of Bec, and the latter of whom spent some time with Lupus in Chester. In the north transept and along the north wall of the nave are remains of masonry said to belong to that precise period. The restoration, both of the exterior, whose warm red coloring (sandstone of the neighborhood) is not one of its least attractions, and of the interior, has been thorough and careful: all old things, such as a quaint boss in the Lady Chapel representing the murder of Saint Thomas à Becket, have been carefully handled, and new things, when introduced, are strictly in keeping with the old.


The old episcopal palace, enlarged from the abbot's house after the Reformation and the raising of the abbey into a cathedral church, still presents some of the oldest Norman remains: it is now being altered to suit the needs of the cathedral school, a foundation of Henry VIII. for twenty-four boys, from whom were to be chosen the cathedral choristers. This, like all other old foundations of the kind, has grown and become enriched. Anthony Trollope's Warden gives a good picture of the abuses and anomalies resulting from the unforeseen increase of the funds of such institutions. One of the chief benefits still retained by Chester cathedral school is a yearly exhibition to either university. The old city schools of English boroughs, as well as the almshouses and hospitals dating from mediæval times, are among the most interesting and characteristic English foundations, and the old guilds or trade companies, with their property, privileges and insignia, no less so. In Chester there are still nominally twenty-four of the latter, though scarcely any have any property or importance except that of the goldsmiths, who have an assay-master and office, and claim the examination of all plate manufactured and for sale in Chester, Cheshire, Lancashire and North Wales. They also have, or had, the old historic mace of the city corporation, which was first displayed in 1508 at the laying of the foundation-stone of the unfinished south-western tower of the cathedral, was taken with the sword by the Parliamentarians during their occupation of the staunch royalist city, and afterward restored at the end of the war. The sword dates from Richard II.'s reign, when he gave it to the city just before his disgrace at Flint Castle, a little lower down the Dee. In 1506, Henry VII. expressly ordained that the mayor of Chester and his successors "shall have this sword carried before them with the point upward in the presence of all the nobles and lords of the realm of England." It seems incredible that such a relic as the mace should have been made over to a goldsmith in exchange for "new plate," but such was the fact, and the present one dates only from 1668, and was a gift from Charles, earl of Derby, "lord of Man and the Isles," who was mayor of Chester for that year.

The greatest peculiarity of Chester—greater even than its Roman walls—lies in its sunken streets and the famous "Rows." These are unique in England, and indeed in Europe. Likenesses to them are seen in Berne, Utrecht and Thun, but nothing just the same, nothing so evidently systematic and prearranged, is to be found anywhere. The principal streets, especially the four great Roman ones that quartered the camp, are sunk and cut into the rock, while the Rows are on the natural level of the ground. The reason for this has been a standing problem to antiquaries. Some have supposed that the excavation of the streets dates from Roman times, and was only due to the necessity of making work for the soldiers during long periods of inaction. The effect is most singular. Hardly any description brings it satisfactorily before the eye of one who has not seen it. The best which I have met with, and a much better one than I should be able to give from my own experience, is that of a German traveller, J.G. Kohl: "Let the reader imagine the front wall of the first floor of each house to have been taken away, leaving that part of the house completely open toward the street, the upper part being supported by pillars or beams. Let him then imagine the side walls also to have been pierced through, to allow a continuous passage along the first floors of all the houses.... It must not be imagined that these Rows form a very regular or uniform gallery. On the contrary, it varies according to the size or circumstances of each house through which it passes. Sometimes, when passing through a small house, the ceiling is so low that one finds it necessary to doff the hat, while in others one passes through a space as lofty as a saloon. In one house the Row lies lower than in the preceding, and one has in consequence to go down a step or two; and perhaps a house or two farther one or two steps have to be mounted again. In one house a handsome, new-fashioned iron railing fronts the street; in another, only a mean wooden paling. In some stately houses the supporting columns are strong, and adorned with handsome antique ornaments; in others, the wooden piles appear time-worn, and one hurries past them, apprehensive that the whole concern must topple down before long. The ground floors over which the Rows pass are inhabited by a humble class of tradesmen, but it is at the back of the Rows themselves that the principal shops are to be found.... The Rows are in reality on a level with the surface of the ground, and the carriages rolling along below are passing through a kind of artificial ravine. The back wall of the ground floor is everywhere formed by the solid rock, and the courtyards of the houses, their kitchens and back buildings, lie generally ten or twelve feet higher than the street."


The Rows are connected with the streets by staircases, and sometimes, when a lane breaks through the gallery entirely, there are two flights of stairs for the wayfarer to pass over. Many of the houses have latticed windows and strongly clasped doors, such as are seldom seen elsewhere in England except in old churches and towers. The gable ends of most houses facing the lanes are turned outward, and ornamented with strong woodwork curiously painted. The colors are quite traceable yet in many houses. There are also texts of Scripture and good common-sense mottoes carved or painted over some of the doors, especially of shops and inns. The lanes are very intricate and irregular: one of them, St. Werburgh's street, gives a glimpse of the cathedral, to which it leads. The Rows have served for trade, for shelter and for defence: they were considered a point of vantage during the siege, and were also useful as gathering-places for serious consultation. In those days, however, little shops along the outer edges of the footways themselves were more numerous than they are now, and the shops within the shelter of the Rows were not glazed, but closed at night with shutters, which in the day were fastened with hooks above the heads of the people. The siege tried the city sorely, and the streets were disputed foot by foot, yet the old half-timbered houses in the Foregate street date farther back than the time when Sir William Brereton, the Parliamentarian general, was quartered there and received messages of defiance from the mayor, to whom he had sent proposals of surrender and compromise. The city did not surrender until the king himself, despairing of his cause, sent the corporation word to make terms unless relieved within ten days.

We have already alluded to the Cop, or high bank, on the right side of the Dee, with the distant view of the Welsh mountains. The nearer view over the city and the river is picturesque also, though less wild, but there is more suggested than the present by the sight of Flint Castle, where the estuary begins, Mostyn, where it ends, Basingwerk Abbey ruins, and Holywell, the famous shrine of St. Winefred. At Flint, Froissart places an incident which shows the sagacity, if not the personal fidelity, of a dog. A greyhound (notoriously the least affectionate of all dog-kind) belonging to Richard II., and who was known never to notice any one but his master, suddenly began to fawn upon Bolingbroke and make "to hym the same frendly countinaunce and chere as he was wonte to do to the kynge. The duke, who knew not the grayhounde, demanded of the kynge what the grayhounde wolde do. 'Cosyn,' quod the kynge, 'it is a greit good token to you and an evyll sygne to me.' 'Sir, howe knowe you that?' quod the duke. 'I knowe it well,' quod the kynge. 'The grayhounde maketh you chere this daye as kynge of Englande, as ye shalbe, and I shalbe deposed. The grayhounde hath this knowledge naturallye: therefore take hym to you: he will folowe you and forsake me.'"


Castle Dinas Bran, above Llangollen, and Flint are the only two genuine ruined castles on the Dee. About halfway between Flint and Mostyn, and nearly side by side, opposite Neston in Cheshire, stand Basingwerk and Holywell. Though the smelting-works and vitriol-manufactories at Bagillt, a little above the Sands of Dee, disfigure the landscape, the mention of metals carries us back over a long stretch of history. The Romans worked this district of lead-mines pretty thoroughly, and the lead-trade in Elizabeth's reign was flourishing and far-reaching. "One of the local peculiarities of the case, which seems to be unique," says Dean Howson, "is the mode in which the lead-market is conducted at Holywell. Notices of the quantity and quality of the metal on sale are forwarded to managers of lead-works; samples are sent and tested; the purchasers meet at Holywell on a fixed Thursday in every month; the samples are ticketed; the prices are written on pieces of paper which are placed in a glass; the highest bidders are of course successful, and the ceremony ends with a friendly lunch." These gatherings have been called from time immemorial the "Holywell ticketings," but the crowds they drew were once as nothing compared with the concourse of pilgrims to St. Winefred's wonder-working well. The legend of her death and resurrection is one of the most marvellous in the annals of Saxon saints; but, unlike the patroness of Chester, St. Werburgh, the authentic character of whose life is supported by hosts of reliable chroniclers, historical proof is much lacking in this case. Yet the faith in her legend defied proof and even scepticism, and the outward signs of the popular belief in the healing virtues of her well, the waters of which were believed to have sprung miraculously from the spot where she was brought to life again and her head reunited to her body, with only a pink-tinged ring round her throat showing the place of severance, were multiplied century after century. Wales had many other holy wells of great repute, but this was always foremost. I believe that besides the natural purity of the water and the mediæval (and especially Celtic) tendency to belief in marvels, some national associations were connected with this spot, and that the Welsh prided themselves on the possession of a well so famous that Saxons from all parts of England, poor and rich alike, came humbly or sent alms lavishly for the privilege of partaking of its healing waters. Its fame continued long after the Reformation, when James II. visited it as a pilgrim. Pope Martin V. had two centuries before granted indulgences to its frequenters. Even at the present day local faith in its powers remains undisturbed, though the legend has faded from men's minds, and neither prayers nor alms are resorted to; but, as I have heard from one who visited it in company with Montalembert and the late Lord Dunraven (a very good antiquary), some small superstitious practices, chiefly the offering of a pin, are substituted. The chapel above the well, which is enclosed by massive arches, is quite a large building, and there is a churchyard around it. The chancel windows, though fine as a whole, are very Late Gothic, or rather Perpendicular.


The ruins of Basingwerk show a purer and simpler architecture. Dark old elms and sycamores fill up the gaps in the masonry, and through the lancet windows and pointed arches one catches glimpses of the sands illustrated by Canon Kingsley's ballad, "The Sands of Dee." On the opposite shore, at English West Kirby, the rule of this once mighty Welsh abbey was humbly and gratefully acknowledged, though the monks of Lupus's abbey of St. Werburgh once disputed the patronage of the parish church there, and on this occasion won their cause. Hilbree Island, and its smaller copy with its Eye-Mark and Beach-Mark, are plainly seen a few miles farther out; also the bank of the "Constable's Sands," which tradition connects with the miracle of the rescue of Lupus's son from the advancing tide through the intercession of St. Werburgh. A stone cross from the cell of the Hilbree anchorite is kept in a Liverpool museum. This cell, on a bare patch of sheep-pasture, rocky, surrounded by sands and rank reedy grass, is still part of St. Oswald's parish in Chester, and the two houses on the island contain the quota of parishioners. At present the island is used as a school and dépôt of buoys for the perpetual marking out of the very intricate navigable channels at the mouth of the Dee, and also as a lifeboat station, though the boat's crew lives on the mainland at Hoylake. Between West Kirby and Shotwick, on the Cheshire bank of the Dee, stretches a long plateau studded with country-houses, some belonging to old county families, but more to rich merchants and bankers.

Older memories cling to the Welsh side of the river, and of these there are not a few gathered round Mostyn Hall, the first country-house on the right-hand side of the river, sailing up from the sea. Though in describing such places one is obliged to repeat one's self, there is in reality a good deal that is individual and characteristic in each house, especially in those that keep the traces of their antiquity visibly upon them. The kernel of Mostyn dates from 1420, but without losing its old look the house has been added to and altered to suit the needs and tastes of its successive owners. The deer-park is large, and as well stocked as it is beautifully wooded, and the entrance, called Porth Mawr, leading into a fine avenue that ends at the hall-door, is suggestive, like many another of the kind, of the care taken of timber in England. There is no reckless and irregular cutting down of young wood unfit for anything but fuel: brushwood is cleared away systematically at certain intervals of from three to seven years, and various portions of the woods are cleared successively, instead of being all bared at once. Then, too, tracts are carefully planted with forest trees at proper distances, and these future groves fenced in, while in formerly neglected plantations the useless timber is thinned out and room given the older trees to grow and spread. The planting of lawns and pleasure-grounds with foreign specimen trees is one of the greatest delights of an English country gentleman, and the acres of young wellingtonias, diodaras, araucarias (or monkey-puzzlers—so named from their spiky leaves, that defy a monkey's climbing powers), various American pines and oaks, catalpas, tulip trees, etc., etc., are as much his pride as a flower-garden or a poultry-yard is the favorite hobby of his wife. Mostyn, however, well surrounded by trees, could afford to dispense with that attraction, considering its family museum and its valuable library of old British history and poetry. The Welsh manuscripts are a treasure in themselves, and a silver harp which has been in the family for more than three centuries is shown with as much pride as the pedigree, which occupies nearly fifty feet of parchment. The old family armor is also interesting. Among purely historical relics is a golden torque, or neck-band, worn by the princes of Wales in ancient times. Some of the royal jewelry of the Irish kings in the museum at Dublin, and one or two specimens I have seen at a private collector's near London, have much the same shape and general appearance, and the plaid-brooches now in common use in Scotland are not unlike the old pins for fastening cloaks of which these museums, public and private, are full.


The road from Mostyn onward passes through Northup, whose high church-tower, encircled with strongly-defined bands of cusped work, is a very prominent object in one of the loveliest landscapes of the Dee. In some parts of the road oaks meet overhead for long distances, and between the trunks the views of the undulating cultivated fields, studded with broad tall trees, are continually changing. At high water there is a kind of likeness here to the scenery of the English lakes, though the mountains there are nearer and better defined; but at low water the Dutch likeness breaks out again, and the low-lying fields of wheat and hay melt away in the distance into vast flat sandbanks. Near Northup are Halkin Castle, a house of the duke of Westminster, formal and black, but with fine grounds and park, and Upper Soughton Hall, belonging to Mr. Howard—a low, irregular, gabled building in the style of Mostyn, gray and time-worn, and very attractive. Nearing Hawarden, the road passes by (but does not lead to) the ruins of Ewloc Castle, a place whose history is very slightly known, but whose walls, eight feet thick, and curious staircase, approached by a small gateway and enclosed in the wall, lead to more speculation than other and better-known places. Its odd situation in a deep, gloomy dell, suggestive, as Dean Howson says, of a Canadian forest-glen, is another attraction. Most ruins, castles especially, are conspicuous objects on hilltops or open plains. Ewloc is like some of the natural beauties of the Lake country, for a sight of which you have to climb steep slippery paths or go down rocky declines with fern on their glistening edges, lean over frail parapets, and cross bridges almost as swinging in their miniature proportions as the famous rope-bridges of Peru. The tall elms and beech trees that shroud Heron Bridge, belonging to Mr. Charles Potts, mark one of the most delightful of the Dee scenes. The house, a very unpretending one, is a statelier counterpart of Erbistock, with its double terraces, broken by flights of steps leading down to the water's edge. Netherlegh, once the home of an old extinct Chester family, the Cotgreaves, almost leans on one of the lodges of Eaton Hall, opposite which, but nearly two miles from the river, is Saighton Tower, formerly a country-house of the abbots of St. Werburgh, and already in earlier times held by the secular canons of that church, to whom the Domesday survey secured it for another half century. Of course it is a good deal altered now. By Bangor we pass a group of old historic houses, each still in the hands of the family that built or inherited it centuries ago—among others, Acton Hall, the birthplace of Judge Jeffreys; then some newer houses, one of which, a large one in the Italian style, belongs to Mr. Edmund Peel, one of the greatest land-owners of the neighborhood. Knolton Hall, near Erbistock, is one of the most beautiful of country-houses, yet not one that has a history as such. It shows what taste can do. Its front is black and white, the timber showing outside, as in many of the southern Cheshire and Shropshire houses, and its low, broad-capped tower, its dozen or so of gables, its stacks of twisted and carved chimneys, give it a very English and home look. How much of the old original farmhouse remains one can hardly tell. Mr. Cotton, brother of Lord Combermere, the Peninsular hero, bought the estate when the place was in a half-ruined condition, but saw that the house had great capabilities. I have known such a restoration, on a smaller scale, to be as successful, when the large kitchen was turned into a drawing-room, ingeniously pieced on to a new and large alcove opening by a glass door on to the flower-garden, and communicating by a tower staircase with the chapel beside it and the "boudoir" up stairs; which room had a mullioned oriel window over the glass door. A library, study and second drawing-room were made out of the existing rooms down stairs, while the oldest part of the house, an ivied square tower with an orthodox ghost-story, was turned into schoolroom and nursery; and on a lower level (a feature which made the hall quite different from any I ever saw in a large or a small house) were built out a covered stone porch, a dining-room with mullioned bay-window and a stone mantelpiece receding to the ceiling, and guarded by two carved lions bearing shields, and a line of servants' offices enclosing a courtyard and a spring of famous water.


Eaton Hall, the coldly magnificent pile of which we spoke before, has its rival in Wynnestay, the house of Sir Watkin Williams Wynn, the largest landowner in Wales. No doubt the old house, burnt down in 1858, was less grand, but the loss of its collections of heirlooms, all things of historical and national interest to a Welshman, was a worse one than that of the building itself. Pennant, in his Tour in Wales nearly a century ago, describes it with the same comments on domestic arrangements as many of our architects now start on as guiding principles: "The most ancient part is a gateway of wood and plaster, dated 1616. On a tower within the court is this excellent distich, allusive to the name of the house, Wynne stay, or 'Rest satisfied with the good things Providence has so liberally showered on you:'

Cui domus est victusque decens, cui patria dulcis,
Sunt satis hæc vitæ, cætera cura labor.

The new part, built by the first Sir Watkin, is of itself a good house, yet was only a portion of a more extensive design. It is finished in that substantial yet neat manner becoming the seat of an honest English country gentleman, adapted to the reception of his worthy neighbors, who may experience his hospitality without dread of spoiling his frippery ornaments, becoming only the assembly-rooms of a town-house or the villa of a great city." The present house is splendid and enormous, severer in style than Eaton, but as wilderness-like in its magnificence. The trees in the park, which is enclosed by an eight-mile wall, are very old and grand, especially the Ruabon avenue, a mile in length, leading from the gates of the old church, where are the family monuments. Wynnestay formerly belonged to the founder of Valle Crucis Abbey, Madoc ap Gryfydd Maeler, and came to the Wynns by the inter-marriage of one of the Gwedyr family of that name with the heiress of Eyton Evans. This creation of almost princely lines by the union of so much land and influence in one family is characteristic of the Middle Ages in English history, and has its faint shadow even in these days, when you invariably find in each family its self-installed herald, sometimes an old maid, often an old bachelor or widower, given to poring over pictures and pedigrees, and dreamily recounting to mischievously attentive cousins the glories of such an alliance, the importance of a fifty-sixth "quartering," or the story of such and such an old love-affair that spoilt (or otherwise) the negotiation for another thousand acres of land. The Welsh are even more given to family pride than the English, but everywhere you find the old sentiment lingering in some remote corner of the family, sometimes cropping out in a beautiful illuminated volume, for which the head of the family generally has to pay, or oftener making the life-study and delight of some innocent, kind-hearted old bookworm. Luckily, we are spared the heraldic lawsuits of old times, such as were sustained by the Grosvenors and the Scropes in the reign of Richard II. respecting the arms they each claimed to bear, and during which the names of two famous men, Chaucer and John of Gaunt, were affixed as witnesses to the manuscript account of it, still preserved in the library at Eaton Hall. Owen Glendower and Hotspur were also called as witnesses at various times on this 'three years' trial.


The view of the Dee from the southern point of Wynnestay Park is perhaps, as a whole, the most remarkable on the river. It is very perfect, and combines the unchangeable with the progressive, showing as it does the swelling hills on both sides of the water, fishermen with coracles on their backs, autumn tints on the clustering trees, and the regular arches of the great railway viaduct. When the train is absent these look not unlike those arches on the Campagna near Rome of which every artist has a sketch and every traveller a recollection. Opposite Wynnestay—which is in Denbighshire—is a detached bit of Flintshire hemmed in between Cheshire and Shropshire, in which is Bettisfield, a house of Lord Hanmer. Owen Glendower's wife was a Hanmer, and tradition says she was married in Hanmer church. The present owner evidently prefers his native river to the greater but not more historic ones of the Continent, and has recorded his preference in some lines, of which the following form the opening:

By the Elbe and through the Rheinland I've wandered far and wide,
And by the Save with silver tones, proud Danube's queenly bride;
By Arno's banks and Tiber's shore; but never did I see
A river I could match with thine, old Druid-haunted

Other houses on or near the river are Chirk Castle, dating just nine hundred years back, the family-place of the Myddletons (now Biddulphs), where among the old portraits is an authentic one of Oliver Cromwell; Brynkinalt, where much of the youth of Wellington was spent with his relation, Lord Arthur Hill Trevor, the owner; Plas Madoc, belonging to the famous member of Parliament for Peterborough, whose rise in the House is always heralded by a well-bred titter; and near Llangollen—for this enumeration carries us up the stream again—Plas Newydd, the house of the "Ladies of Llangollen." Farther up is Rhaggatt, the seat of a very old Welsh family, the Lloyds, and opposite it was the old hall of Owen Glendower, of which a Welsh bard says that it had "nine halls with large wardrobes" (probably the retainers' rooms), and near this "a wooden house supported on posts, with eight apartments for guests." Of the park, warren, pigeon-house, mill, orchard, vineyard and fishpond, "every convenience for good living and every support to hospitality," of which Pennant speaks, there is hardly a trace now, though the moat is a self-evident relic. Rug (pronounced Reeg) came from the Vaughans to the Wynns by many stages of attainder, marriage and sale, and is famous as the place where King Gryffydd ap Cynan was betrayed into the power of Lupus, earl of Chester, who kept him a prisoner for twelve years in the city castle; and near Bala Lake is Palé Hall, a new house representing a very old one; Rhiwlas (pronounced Rovlas), whose owners, the Prices, suffered in the Stuart cause, a member of the Long Parliament, one of their family, being expelled on account of his loyalty to the king; and Glann-y-llyn, a comfortable shooting-box of Sir Watkin Williams Wynn. Of course there are numberless other houses, the mere list of which one could not get through without the help of a county history and a court guide for each of the shires through which the Dee passes. Every library stored in these old houses or carefully brought there from still older ones forms an inexhaustible subject of interest, not only to the owners (who are often the least benefited by it), but to inquiring minds of various races and conditions. Even a lad let loose from college, his mind full of athletics and Alpine Club aspirations, can find something to admire in the relics or representations of ancient national games, while the scholar discovers details full of interest in looking over the books, manuscripts and curiosities. The size of the country-houses and the extent of their gardens and parks seem perhaps disproportionate compared with the confined space of the country itself: indeed, it is as much their frequency in the landscape as the general cultivation of the whole that has made England celebrated for its garden-like look; but the historic associations of these small rivers and small territories are on an equally large scale. Thousands of unnamed brooks on this side of the ocean run through forests or farms as large as an English or Welsh county, without rousing any save imaginary associations in the mind of the traveller or the angler: they are as large as, and more varied in scenery than, our "wizard stream;" but the old recollections, the castles, the ruins, the modernized homes, the national relics, the inherited traits of likeness between past and present, are wanting. In Wales it is easy to leap back a few hundred years. The costume of the market-women at the seacoast town of Aberystwith—not a sluggish place, by any means—is almost literally like the old one in pictures of "Mother Hubbard." I have seen young and pretty women wear it. The neatly-roofed hay and straw stacks, so different from the ungainly heaps so called in England, are thatched in the same way for which the Welsh farmers were famous two hundred years ago, while many of the poorer dwellings, especially in the slate districts, look just as they may have done to Owen Glendower himself. The character of the people, like that of the grave Highlanders, is stern and enduring, though their temper is fierce and hot: it is easy to understand how passionately certain forms of Methodism appealed to such temperaments, and developed among them an enthusiasm easy to stir up into a likeness of that of the old Cameronians.


Lady Blanche Murphy.


Before the change which has recently befallen the chief German watering-places, Baden—or, as it was more commonly called, Baden-Baden—was the most frequented, the most brilliant and the most profitable "hell" in Europe. Its baths and medicinal waters were a mere excuse for the coming thither of a small number of the vast concourse which annually filled its hotels. In any case, they sank into comparatively utter insignificance. It was not for water—at least not for the waters of any other stream than that of Pactolus—that the world came to Baden. Of course, the sums realized by the keepers of the hell were enormous; and they found it to be their interest to do all that contributed to make the place attractive on a liberal scale. Gardens, parks, miles of woodland walks admirably kept, excellent music in great abundance, vast salons for dancing, for concerts, for reading-rooms, for billiard-rooms, etc.—all as magnificent as carving and gilding and velvet and satin could make them—were provided gratuitously, not for those only who played at the tables, but for all those who would put themselves within reach of the temptation to do so. And this liberal policy was found to answer abundantly. Very many of the water-cure places in the smaller states of Germany had their hells also, and did as Baden did, on a more modest scale. Then came the German unification and the great uprising of a German national consciousness. And German national feeling said that this scandal should no longer exist. A certain delay was rendered necessary by the contracts which were running between the different small governments and the keepers of the gambling-tables. But it was decreed that when the two or three years which were required for these to run out should be at an end, they should not be renewed. It was a serious resolution to take, for some half dozen or so of these little pleasure-towns believed, not without good reason, that the measure would be at once fatal to their prosperity and well-nigh to their existence. And of course there were not wanting large numbers of people who argued that the step was a quixotic one, as needless and fallacious in a moral point of view as fatal on the side of economic considerations. Could it be maintained that the governments in question had any moral duty in the matter save as regarded the lives and habits of their own people? And these were not imperilled by the existence of the gambling-tables. For it was notorious that each of these ducal and grand-ducal patrons of the blind goddess strictly forbade their own subjects to enter the door of the play-saloons. And as to those who resorted to them, and supplied the abundant flow of gold that enriched the whole of each little state, could it be supposed that any one of these gamblers would be reformed or saved from the consequences of his vice by the shutting up of these tables? It was difficult to answer this question in the affirmative. No liquor law ever prevented men from getting drunk, nor could it be hoped that any closing of this, that or the other hell could save gamblers from the indulgence of their darling passion. Nevertheless, it can hardly be seriously denied that the measure was the healthy outcome of a genuinely healthy and highly laudable spirit. "Ruin yourself, if you will, but you shall not come here for the purpose, and, above all, we will not touch the profit to be made out of your vice." This was the feeling of the German government, and, considering the amount of self-denial involved in the act, Germany deserves no small degree of honor and praise for having accomplished it.

And now it is time to ask, Has Baden—for we will confine our attention to this ci-devant queen of hells—has Baden suffered that ruin which it was so confidently predicted would overtake her? Baden Revisited, by one who knew her well in the old days of her wickedness and wealth, supplies the means for replying to the question. Unquestionably, in the mere matter of the influx of gold the town has suffered very severely. How were some four-and-twenty large hotels, besides a host of smaller ones, which often barely sufficed to hold the crowds attracted by the gambling-tables, to exist when this attraction ceased? It might have been expected that a large number of these would at once have been shut up. But such has not been the case. I believe that not one has been closed. Nevertheless, a visitor's first stroll through the town, and especially in the alleys and gardens around the celebrated "Conversations-Haus," as it hypocritically called itself, is quite sufficient to show how great is the difference between Baden as it was and Baden as it is—between Baden the wealthy, gaudy, gay, privileged home of vice, and Baden moralized and turned from the error of its ways. And it cannot be denied that, speaking merely of the impression made upon the eye, the difference is all in favor of vice. "As ugly as sin" is a common phrase. But, unfortunately, the truth is that sin sometimes looks extremely pretty, especially when well dressed and of an evening by gaslight. And it did, it must be owned, look extremely pretty at Baden. The French especially came there in those days in great numbers, and they brought their Parisian toilettes with them. And somehow or other, let the fact be explained as it may—and, though perhaps easily explicable enough, I do not feel called upon to enter on the explanation here—one used in those wicked old days to see a great number of very pretty women at Baden, which can hardly be said to be the case at Baden moralized. The whole social atmosphere of the place was wholly and unmistakably different, and in outward appearance wicked Baden beat moral Baden hollow. It would not do in the old time to examine the gay scene which fluttered and glittered before the eyes much below the absolute exterior surface. The little town in those old days, as regarded a large proportion of the crowd which made it look so gay, was—not to put too fine a point upon it—a sink of more unmitigated blackguardism than could easily be found concentrated within so small a compass on any other spot of the earth. A large number of the persons who now congregate in this beautiful valley look, to tell the truth, somewhat vulgar. Vulgar? As if the flaunting crowds which seemed to insult the magnificent forests, the crystal streams and the smiling lawns with their finery were not saturated with a vulgarity of the most quintessential intensity! Yes, but that only showed itself to the moral sense of those who could look a little below the surface, whereas the vulgarity that may be noted sunning itself in the trim gardens and sprawling on the satin sofas which are the legacy of the departed wickedness is of the sort that shows itself upon the surface. In a word, moral Baden looks a little dowdy, and that wicked Baden never looked.


The general determination at Baden when the terrible decree which put an end to its career of wealth and wickedness came upon it like a thunder-bolt was of the kind expressed by the more forcible than elegant phrase, "Never say die!" The little town was determined to have a struggle for its existence. It still had its mineral waters, so highly valued by the Romans. The Romans, it may be remarked en passant, seem to have discovered and profited by every mineral spring in Europe. Hardly one of the more important springs can be named which cannot be shown, either by direct historic testimony or by the still existing remains of baths and the like, to have been known to the universal conquerors. Well, Baden still had its waters, good for all the ills to which flesh is heir—capiti fluit utilis, utilis alveo. It still had its magnificent forests—pine and oak and beech in most lovely juxtaposition and contrast. It had the interesting and charmingly picturesque ruins of its ancient castle on the forest-covered hill above the town, perched on one mighty mass of porphyry, and surrounded by other ranges of the same rock, thrown into such fantastic forms that they seem to assume the appearance of rival castellated ruins built on Nature's own colossal plan, and such a world of strange forms of turrets and spires and isolated towers and huge donjons that the Devil has "pulpits" and "bridges" and "chambers" there, as is well known to all tourists to be his wont in similar places. It had its other mediæval baronial residences situated in the depths of the forest at pleasant distances for either driving or walking. It had its delicious parks and gardens, beginning from the very door of the "Conversations-Haus," with brilliantly-lighted avenues, gay with shops and gas-lamps, and gradually wandering away into umbrageous solitudes and hillside paths lit by the moon alone—so gradually that she who had accepted an arm for a stroll amid the crowd in the bright foreground of the scene found herself enjoying solitude à deux before she had time to become alarmed or think what mamma would say. Then it had still the gorgeous halls, the ball-rooms, the concert-rooms, the promenading-rooms, with their gilding and velvet and satin furniture, which had been created by a wave of the wand of the great enchanter who presided at the green table. Why should not all these good things be turned to the service of virtue instead of vice? Why should not respectability and morality inherit the legacy of departed wickedness? Why should not good and virtuous German Fraüleins, with their pale blue eyes and pale blond hair, do their innocent flirting amid the bowers where the Parisian demi-monde had outraged the chaste wood-nymphs by its uncongenial presence? The loathsome patchouli savor of the denizens of the Boulevard would hardly resist the purifying breezes of one Black Forest winter. The notice to quit served on Mammon would be equally efficacious as regarded the whole of his crew. The whole valley would be swept clean of them, and sweetened and restored to the lovers of Nature in her most delicious aspect. Baden, emerging from the cold plunge-bath of its first dismay, determined that it should be so. The hotel-keepers, the lodging-house-keepers, the livery-stable-keepers, the purveyors of all kinds, screwed their courage to the sticking-place and determined to go in for virtue, early hours and moderate prices. Well, yes! moderate prices! This was the severest cut of all. But there was no help for it. Virtue does prefer moderate prices. There could be no more of that reckless scattering of gold, no more of that sublime indifference to the figure at the foot of the bill, which characterized their former customers. What mattered a napoleon or so more or less in their daily expense to him or her whose every evening around the green table left them some thousands of francs richer or poorer than the morning had found them? There can be no doubt, I fear, that Baden would have much preferred a continuance in its old ways. But the choice was not permitted to it. It is therefore making a virtue of necessity, and striving to live under the new régime as best it may. And I am disposed to think that better days may yet be in store for it. At present, the preponderating majority of the visitors are Germans. There are naturally no French, who heretofore formed the majority of the summer population. There are hardly any Americans, and very few English. Those of the class which used to find Baden delightful find it, or conceive that they would find it, so no more. And English and Americans of a different sort seem to have hardly yet become aware that they would find there a very different state of things from that which they have been accustomed to associate in idea with the name of the place. It must be supposed, however, that they will shortly do so. The natural advantages and beauties of the place are so great, the accommodation is so good, and even in some respects the inheritance of the good things the gamblers have left behind them so valuable, that it is hardly likely that the place will remain neglected. Where else are such public rooms and gardens to be found? The charge made at present for the enjoyment of all this is about six or eight cents a day. Such a payment could never have originally provided all that is placed at the disposal of the visitor. He used in the old times to enjoy it all absolutely gratuitously, unless he paid for it by his losses at the tables. Play provided it all. But it is to be feared that the very modest payment named above will be found insufficient even to keep up the establishment which Mammon has bequeathed to Virtue. The ormolu and the carved cornices, and the fresco-painted walls and the embroidered satin couches and divans, and the miles upon miles of garden-walks, have not indeed disappeared, as, according to all the orthodox legends, such Devil's gifts should do, but they will wear out; and I do not think that any eight cents a day will suffice to renew them. But in the mean time you may avail yourself of them. You may lounge on the brocade-covered divans which used to be but couches of thorns to so many of their occupants, undisturbed by any more palpitating excitement than that produced by the perusal of the daily paper. The lofty ceilings echo no more the hateful warning croak of the croupier, "Faites votre jeu, messieurs. Le jeu est fait!" which used to be ceaseless in them from midday till midnight. There are no more studies to be made on the men and women around you of all the expressions which eager avarice, torturing suspense and leaden despair can impart to the human countenance. The utmost you can hope to read on one of those placidly stolid German burgher faces is the outward and visible sign of the inward oppression caused by too copious a repast at the one-o'clock table d'hôte. It is the less disagreeable and less unhealthy subject of contemplation of the two. But the truth remains that virtuous Baden does look somewhat dowdy.

Just seventy-three years ago a change as great as that which has transformed Baden happened to an establishment which represented the old-world social system of Europe as completely and strikingly as Baden the "watering-place"—that is the modern phrase—did the Europe of the latter half of the nineteenth century. In another green valley of this region, as beautiful as, or even more beautiful than, that of Baden, there existed a gathering-place of the sort produced by the exigencies of a different stage of social progress—the convent of Allerheiligen, or, as we should say, All Saints or Allhallows. It is within the limits of an easy day's excursion from Baden, and no visitor who loves "the merry green wood" should omit to give a day to Allerheiligen, for he will scarcely find in his wanderings, let them be as extensive as they may, a more perfect specimen of the loveliest forest scenery. It is an old remark, that the ancient ecclesiastics who selected the sites of the monastic establishments that were multiplied so excessively in every country in Europe showed very excellent judgment and much practical skill in the choice of them. And almost every visit made to the spot where one of these cloister homes existed confirms the truth of the observation, more especially as regards the communities belonging to the great Benedictine family. The often-quoted line about seeking "to merit heaven by making earth a hell," however well it may be applied to the practices of some of the more ascetic orders, especially the mendicants, cannot with any reason be considered applicable to the disciples of St. Benedict. In point of fact, at the time when the great and wealthy convents of this order were founded it was rather outside the convent-wall that men were making the world a hell upon earth. And for those who could school themselves to consider celibacy no unendurable evil it would be difficult to imagine a more favorable contrast than that offered by "the world" in the Middle Ages and the retreat of the cloister. A site well selected with reference to all the requirements of climate, wood and water, and with an appreciative eye to the beauties of Nature, in some sequestered but favored spot as much shut in from war and its troubles as mountains, streams and forests could shut it in; a building often palatial in magnificence, always comfortable, with all the best appliances for study which the age could afford; with beautiful churches for the practice of a faith entirely and joyfully believed in; with noble halls for temperate but not ascetic meals, connected by stairs by no means unused with excellent and extensive cellars; with lovely cloisters for meditative pacing, and well-trimmed gardens for pleasant occupation and delight,—what can be imagined more calculated to ensure all the happiness which this earth was in those days capable of affording?

Such a retreat was the convent of Allerheiligen. It was founded for Premonstratensian monks at the close of the twelfth century by Uta, duchess of Schawenburg, who concludes the deed of foundation, which still exists, with these words: "And if anybody shall do anything in any respect contrary to these statutes, he will for ever be subject to the vengeance of God and of all saints." Poor Duchess Uta! Could her spirit walk in this valley, as lovely now as when she gave it to her monks, and look upon the ruins of the pile she raised, she would think that the vengeance of God and all saints had been incurred to a considerable extent by somebody. The waterfalls—seven of them in succession—made by the little stream that waters the valley immediately after it has passed through the isolated bit of flat meadow-land on which the convent was built, continue to sing their unceasing song as melodiously as when the duchess Uta visited the spot and marked it out for the "Gottes Haus" she was minded to plant there. Her husband, the duke Welf, who had married her when she was a well-dowered widow, had been a very bad husband, which naturally tended to lead his neglected lady wife's mind in the direction of founding religious houses. He was duke of Altorf and Spoleto, the one possession lying on the shores of the Lake of Lucerne, and the other among the ilex-woods that overlook the valley of the Tiber—a strange conjunction of titles, which is in itself illustrative of the shape European history took in that day, and of the preponderating part which Germany played in Italy and among the rulers of its soil. Being thus duke of Spoleto, Welf resided much in Italy, but does not seem to have found it necessary to take his German wife with him to those milder skies and easier social moralities. Uta stayed at home amid the dark-green valleys of her native Black Forest, and planned cloister-building. Before the chart, however, which was to give birth to Allerheiligen was signed, Duke Welf came home, and having had, it would seem, his fling to a very considerable extent, had reached by a natural process that time of life and that frame of mind which inclined him to join in his long-neglected wife's pietistic schemes. So they planned and drew up the statutes together, and the convent was founded and built, a son of Uta by her first husband being, as is recorded, the first prior.


It was not long before the young community became rich. Such was the ordinary, the almost invariable, course of matters. Property was held on very unstable conditions even by the great and powerful. The most secure of all tenures was that by which the Church held what was once her own. And in a state of things when men were persuaded both that it was very doubtful whether they would be able to keep possession of their property, especially whether they would be able to secure such possessions to those who were to come after them, and that the surest way to escape that retribution in the next world which they fully believed to have been incurred by their deeds in this world was to give what they possessed to some monastic institution, it is not difficult to understand how and why monasteries grew rich. And it is equally intelligible that the result should have followed which did, as we know, follow almost invariably. As the monasteries became rich the monks became corrupt—first comfortable, then luxurious, then licentious. The Benedictines escaped this doom more frequently than the other orders. Even after their great convents had become wealthy and powerful landlords they were often very good landlords, and the condition of their lands and of their tenants and vassals contrasted favorably with that of the lands and dependants of their lay neighbors. The superiority of the Benedictines in this respect was doubtless due to their studious and literary habits and proclivities. It is constantly urged that the cause of learning and of literature owes a great debt of gratitude to the monks, but it should be said that this debt is due almost exclusively to the sons of St. Benedict.

But something more than this may be said for the community founded by Duchess Uta, the beautiful ruins of whose dwelling now complete the picturesque charm of this most exquisite valley. By a rare exception history has in truth nothing to say against them. Their record is quite clear. All remaining testimony declares that from their first establishment to the day of their dissolution the Allerheiligen monks lived studious and blameless lives. Possibly, the profound seclusion of their valley, literally shut in from the outer world by vast masses of thick roadless forests, may have contributed to this result, though similar circumstances do not in all cases seem to have ensured a similar consequence. Good fortune probably did much in the matter. A happy succession of three or four good and able abbots would give the place a good name and beget a good tradition in the community; and this in such cases is half the battle. "Such and such goings-on may do elsewhere, but they won't suit Allerheiligen"—such a sentiment, once made common, would do much for the continuance of a good and healthy tradition.

Accordingly, it was long before the sentence of dissolution went forth against the monastery of Allerheiligen—that sentence which was to produce a change in the place and all around it as momentous as that other sentence which some seventy years later went forth against Baden-Baden. It was not till 1802 that the monastery of Allerheiligen was dissolved; and its extinction was due then not to any reason or pretext drawn from the conduct of the inmates, but to the religious dissensions and political quarrels of princes and governments. But the doom was all the more irrevocably certain. In all the countries in which monasteries have been abolished and Church property confiscated tales eagerly spread, and by no means wholly disbelieved even by the spoilers themselves, are current of the "judgments" and retribution which have sooner or later fallen on those who have been enriched by the secularization of Church property or who have taken part in the acts by which the Church has been dispossessed. But rarely has what the world now calls "chance" brought about what the Church would call so startlingly striking a manifestation of the wrath of Heaven against the despoilers of "God's house." St. Norbert was the original founder of the Premonstratensian rule. And it was precisely on St. Norbert's Day next after the dissolution of the monastery of Allerheiligen that a tremendous and—the local chroniclers say—unprecedented storm of thunder, lightning and hail broke over the woodland valley and the devoted fabric in such sort that the lightning, more than once striking the buildings, set them on fire and reduced the vast pile to the few picturesque ruins which now delight the tourist and the landscape painter. Could the purpose and intent of the supernal Powers have been more strongly emphasized or more clearly marked? Truly, the scattered monks may have been excused for recalling with awe, not unmingled with a sense of triumph, the prophetic denunciation of their foundress Uta, which has been cited above, against whoso should undo the pious deed she was doing. For more than six hundred years her work had prospered and her will had been respected, and now after all those centuries the warning curse was still potent. Neither thunder nor lightning, nor the anger of St. Norbert, however, availed to rebuild the monastery or recall the monks. Their kingdom and the glory thereof has passed to another, even to Herr Mittenmeyer, Wirth und Gastgeber, who has built a commodious hostelry close by the ruins, which are mainly those of the church, and on the site of the monastic buildings, and who distributes a hospitality as universal, if not quite so disinterested, as that practised by his cowled predecessors. There, for the sum of six marks—about a dollar and a half—per diem you may find a well-furnished cell and a fairly well-supplied refectory, and may amuse yourself with pacing in the walks where St. Norbert's monks paced, looking on the scenes of beauty on which they gazed, and casting your mind for the nonce into the mould of the minds of those who so looked and mused. You may do so, indeed, thanks to Herr Mittenmeyer, with greater comfort, materially speaking, than the old inmates of the valley could have done. For the most charming and delicious walks have been made through the woods on either side of the narrow valley, and skilfully planned so as to show you all the very remarkable beauties of it. These, in truth, are of no ordinary kind. The hillsides which enclose the valley are exceedingly steep, almost precipitous indeed in some places, though not sufficiently so to prevent them from being clothed with magnificent forests. Down this narrow valley a little stream runs, and about a quarter of a mile from the spot on which the convent stood, and the ruins stand, makes a series of cascades of every variety of form and position that can be conceived. All these falls, together with the crystalline pools in huge caldrons worn by the waters out of the rocks at their feet, were no doubt well known to the vassal fishermen who brought their tribute of trout to the convent larder. But the majority of the holy men themselves, I fancy, lived and died without seeing some of the falls, for they would be by no means easily accessible without the assistance of the paths which by dint of long flights of steps, constructed of stones evidently brought from the ruins of the abbey, carry the visitor to every spot of vantage-ground most favorable for commanding a view of them. If, however, you have the advantage over the monks in this respect, your retreat will be less adapted to the purposes of retirement in another point of view. Ten or a dozen carriages a day filled with German tourists, all in high spirits and all very thirsty ("Thanks be!" says Herr Mittenmeyer), are not appropriate aids to the indulgence of contemplation. Scott advised his readers if they "would view fair Melrose aright, to visit it by the pale moonlight." And to those who would view Allerheiligen aright I would add the recommendation that the moon should be an October moon. The usual holiday-making months in Germany are by that time over. The professors have gone back to their chairs in the different universities; the privat-docents have reopened their courses; the substantial burghers have returned to their shops; and the raths of all sorts and degrees have ensconced themselves once more behind their official desks, and have ceased to "babble of green fields" any more till this time twelvemonth. The tourists will have gone, and the autumnal colors will have come into the woods. There is much beech mixed with the pine in these forests, and the beech in October is as gorgeous a master of color as Rubens or Veronese. Herr Mittenmeyer's mind, too, will have entered into a more placid and even-tempered phase. A stout, thickset man is Herr Mittenmeyer, with broad, rubicund face and short bull neck, of the type that suggests the possibility of an analogous shortness of temper under the pressure of being called in six different directions at once. Altogether, it is better in October. The song of the waterfall will not then be the only one making the woods melodious. There will be a fitful soughing of the wind in the forest. There will be a carpeting of dry, pale-brown oak-leaves on all the paths which "will make your steps vocal." Again and again, when slowly and musingly climbing the steep homeward path up the valley in the dark hour, when the sun has set and before the moon has yet risen, you will fancy that you hear the tread among the leaves of a sandalled foot behind you. But it is well that the path leads you, for there is no more any vesper-bell flinging its sweet and welcome notes far and wide over hill and vale to guide the returning wanderer through the forest.

Then the whole of this Black Forest region is full of legends and traditional stories, which live longer and are more easily preserved among a people where the sons and the daughters live and marry and die for the most part under the shadow of the same trees and the same thatch beneath which their fathers and mothers did the same. Of course, the Black Huntsman is as well known as of yore, though perhaps somewhat more rarely seen. But his habits and specialties have become too well known to all readers of folk-lore to need any further notice. Less widely known histories, each the traditional subject of inglenook talk in its own valley, may be found at every step. There is a rather remarkable grotto or cavern in the hill above Allerheiligen, the main ridge which divides that valley from Achern and the Rhine. It is, you are told, the Edelfrauengrab (the "Noble Lady's Grave"). And you will be further informed, if you inquire aright, how that unhallowed spot came to be a noble lady's grave, and something more than a grave. 'Twas at the time of the Crusades—those mischief-making Crusades, which, among all the other evil which they produced, would have absolutely overwhelmed the divorce courts of those days with press of business if there had then been any divorce courts. This noble lady's lord went to the Crusades. How could a gallant knight and good Christian do aught else? Of course he went to the Crusades! And of course his noble lady felt extremely dull and disconsolate during his absence. What was she to do? There was no circulating library; and even if there had been, she would not have been able to avail herself of its resources, for, though tradition says nothing upon the subject, it may be very safely assumed that she could not read. And needlework in the company of her maids must have become terribly wearisome after a time. She could go to mass, and to vespers also. Probably she did so at the new church of the recently-established community nestling in so charming a spot of the lovely valley beneath her. Let us hope that it was not there that she fell in with one whom in an hour of weakness she permitted to console her too tenderly for the absence of her crusading lord. Had she waited with patience but only nine months longer for his return, all would have been well. For he did return as nearly as possible about that time; and, arriving at his own castle-door, met one whom he at once recognized as his wife's confidential maid coming out of the house and carrying a large basket. The natural inquiry whither she was going, and what she had in her basket, was answered by the statement—uttered with that ingenuous fluency and masterly readiness for which ladies' maids have in all countries, and doubtless in all ages, been celebrated—that the basket contained a litter of puppies which she was taking to the river to drown. Alas! the girl had adhered but too nearly to the truth. There were seven living and breathing creatures in the basket, and the confidential maid had been sent on the very confidential errand of drowning them. Woe worth the day! They were seven little unchristened Christians, doomed to die one death as they had been born at one birth—the result of that erring noble lady's fault. The methods of injured husbands were wont to be characterized by much simplicity and directness of purpose in those days. The noble crusader invoked the aid of no court, either spiritual or lay. He happened to remember the existence of a certain dismal cavern in the sandstone rock not far from his dwelling. The entrance to it was very easily walled up. That cavern became the noble lady's prison and deathbed, as well as her grave! And a valuable possession has that lady's death and grave become to the descendants of her lord's vassals, for many a gulden is earned by guiding the curious to see the spot and by retailing the tragic history.

Well! and of the two changes, the two abolitions, which have been here recorded, which was the most needed, which the most salutary, which the least mingled in its results with elements of evil? Poor Baden piteously complains that it does not take half the money in the course of the year that it used to receive as surely as "the season" came round in the old times. And the poor, wholly unconverted by maxims of political economy, declare that there have been no good times in the land since the destruction of the monasteries. After all, Abbot Fischer (that was the name of the last of the long line) and his monks were less objectionable than M. Benazet and his croupiers. Could we perhaps keep the scales even and make things pleasant all round by re-establishing both the abolished institutions—restoring the croupiers and "makers of the game" to their green table, and requiring them out of their enormous gains to re-endow the convent? "C'est une idée, comme une autre!" as a Frenchman says.

T. Adolphus Trollope.


Sweet wind that blows o'er sunny isles
The softness of the sea!
Blow thou across these moving miles
News of my love to me.
Ripples her hair like waves that sweep
About this pleasant shore:
Her eyes are bluer than the deep
Round rocky Appledore.
Her sweet breast shames the scattered spray,
Soft kissed by early light:
I dream she is the dawn of day,
That lifts me out of night.

Oscar Laighton.




Ornamental Illustration of Lottie

Lottie's birthday had dawned, the fresh morning hours had slipped away, the sun had declined from his midday splendor into golden afternoon, and yet to Lottie herself the day seemed scarcely yet begun. Its crowning delight was to be a dance given in her honor, and she awaited that dance with feverish anxiety.

It was nearly three o'clock when the dog-cart from Brackenhill came swiftly along the dusty road. It was nearing its destination: already there were distant glimpses of Fordborough with its white suburban villas. Percival Thorne thoroughly enjoyed the bright June weather, the cloudless blue, the clear singing of the birds, the whisper of the leaves, the universal sweetness from far-off fields and blossoms near at hand. He gazed at the landscape with eyes that seemed to be looking at something far away, and yet they were observant enough to note a figure crossing a neighboring field. It was but a momentary vision, and the expression of his face did not vary in the slightest degree, but he turned to the man at his side and spoke in his leisurely fashion: "I'll get down here and walk the rest of the way. You may take my things to Mr. Hardwicke's."

The man took the reins, but he looked round in some wonder, as if seeking the cause of the order. His curiosity was unsatisfied. The slim girlish figure had vanished behind a clump of trees, and nothing was visible that could in any way account for so sudden a change of purpose. Glancing back as he drove off, he saw only Mr. Percival Thorne, darkly conspicuous on the glaring road, standing where he had alighted, and apparently lost in thought. The roan horse turned a corner, the sound of wheels died away in the distance, and Percival walked a few steps in the direction of Brackenhill, reached a stile, leaned against it and waited.

"Many happy returns of the day to you!" he said as the girl whom he had seen came along the field-path.

Light leafy shadows wavered on her as she walked, and, all unconscious of his presence, she was softly whistling an old tune.

The color rushed to her face, and she stopped short. "Percival! You here?" she said.

"Yes: did I startle you? I was driving into the town, and saw you in the distance. I could not do less—could I?—than stop then and there to pay my respects to the queen of the day. And what a glorious day it is!"

Lottie sprang over the stile, and looked up and down the road. "Oh, you are going to walk?" she said.

"I'm going to walk—yes. But what brings you here wandering about the fields to-day?"

She had recovered her composure, and looked up at him with laughing eyes: "It is wretched indoors. They are so busy fussing over things for to-night, you know."

"Exactly what I thought you would be doing too."

"I? Oh, mamma said I wasn't a bit of use, and Addie said that I was more than enough to drive Job out of his mind. The fact was, I upset one of her flower-vases. And afterward—well, afterward I broke a big china bowl."

"I begin to understand," said Percival thoughtfully, "that they might feel able to get on without your help."

"Yes, perhaps they might. But they needn't have made such a noise about the thing, as if nobody could enjoy the dance to-night because a china bowl was smashed! Such rubbish! What could it matter?"

"Was it something unique?"

"Oh, it was worse than that," she answered frankly: "it was one of a set. But I don't see why one can't be just as happy without a complete set of everything."

"There I agree with you," he replied. "I certainly can't say that my happiness is bound up with crockery of any kind. And, do you know, Lottie, I'm rather glad it was one of a set. Otherwise, your mother might have known that there was something magical about it, but one of a set is prosaic—isn't it? Suppose it had been a case of—

If this glass doth fall,
Farewell then, O Luck of Edenhall!"

"Well, the luck would have been in uncommonly little bits," she replied. "I smashed it on a stone step, and they were so cross that I was crosser, so I said I would come out for a walk."

"And do you feel any better?" he asked in an anxious voice.

"Yes, thank you. Being in the open air has done me good."

"Then may I go with you? Or will nothing short of solitude effect a complete cure?"

"You may come," she said gravely. "That is, if you are not afraid of the remains of my ill-temper."

"No, I'm not afraid. I don't make light of your anger, but I believe I'm naturally very brave. Where are we going?"

She hesitated a moment, then looked up at him: "Percival, isn't this the way to the wishing-well? Ever since we came to Fordborough, three months ago, I've wanted to go there. Do you know where it is?"

"Oh yes, I know it. It is about a mile from here, or perhaps a little more. That won't be too far for you, will it?"

"Too far!" She laughed outright. "Why, I could walk ten times as far, and dance all night afterward."

"Then we'll go," said Percival. And, crossing the road, they passed into the fields on the opposite side. A pathway, too narrow for two to walk abreast, led them through a wide sea of corn, where the flying breezes were betrayed by delicate tremulous waves. Lottie led the way, putting out her hand from time to time as she went, and brushing the bloom from the softly-swaying wheat. She was silent. Fate had befriended her strangely in this walk. The loneliness of the sunlit fields was far better for her purpose than the crowd and laughter of the evening, but her heart almost failed her, and with childish superstition she resolved that she would not speak the words which trembled on her lips until she and Percival should have drunk together of the wishing-well. He followed her, silent too. He was well satisfied to be with his beautiful school-girl friend, free to speak or hold his peace as he chose. Freedom was the great charm of his friendship with Lottie—freedom from restraint and responsibility. For if Percival was serenely happy and assured on any single point, he was so with regard to his perfect comprehension of the Blakes in general, and Lottie in particular. He had some idea of giving his cousin Horace a word of warning on the subject of Mrs. Blake's designs. He quite understood that good lady's feelings concerning himself. "I'm nobody," he thought. "I'm not to be thrown over, because I introduced Horace to them; besides, I'm an additional link between Fordborough and Brackenhill, and Mrs. Blake would give her ears to know Aunt Middleton. And I am no trouble so long as I am satisfied to amuse myself with Lottie. In fact, I am rather useful. I keep the child out of mischief, and I don't give her black eyes, as that Wingfield boy did." And from this point Percival would glide into vague speculation as to Lottie's future. He was inclined to think that the girl would do something and be something when she grew up. She was vehement, resolute, ambitious. He wondered idly, and a little sentimentally, whether hereafter, when their paths had diverged for ever, she would look back kindly to these tranquil days and to her old friend Percival. He rather thought not. She would have enough to occupy her without that.

It was true, after a fashion, that Lottie was ambitious in her dreams of love. Her lover must be heroic, handsome, a gentleman by birth, with something of romance about his story. A noble poverty might be more fascinating than wealth. There was but one thing absolutely needful: he must not be commonplace. It was the towering yet unsubstantial ambition of her age, a vision of impossible splendor and happiness. Most girls have such dreams: most women find at six or seven and twenty that their enchanted castles in the air have shrunk to brick-and-mortar houses. Tastes change, and they might even be somewhat embarrassed were they called on to play their parts in the passionate love-poems which they dreamed at seventeen. But the world was just opening before Lottie's eyes, and she was ready to be a heroine of romance.

"This way," said Percival; and they turned into a narrow lane, deep and cool, with green banks overgrown with ferns, and arching boughs above. As they strolled along he gathered pale honeysuckle blossoms from the hedge, and gave them to Lottie.

"How pretty it is!" said the girl, looking round.

"Wait till you see the well," he replied. "We shall be there directly: it is prettier there."

"But this is pretty too: why should I wait?" said Lottie.

"You are right. I don't know why you should. Admire both: you are wiser than I, Lottie."

As he spoke, the lane widened into a grassy glade, and Lottie quickened her steps, uttering a cry of pleasure. Percival followed her with a smile on his lips. "Here is your wishing-well," he said. "Do you like it, now that you have found it out?"

She might well have been satisfied, even if she had been harder to please. It was a spring of the fairest water, bubbling into a tiny hollow. The little pool was like a brimming cup, with colored pebbles and dancing sand at the bottom, and delicate leaf-sprays clustered lightly round its rim. And this gem of sparkling water was set in a space of mossy sward, with trees which leant and whispered overhead, their quivering canopy pierced here and there by golden shafts of sunlight and glimpses of far-off blue.

"It is like fairy-land," said Lottie.

"Or like something in Keats's poems," Percival suggested.

"I never read a line of them, so I can't say," she answered with defiant candor, while she inwardly resolved to get the book.

He smiled: "You don't read much poetry yet, do you? Ah, well, you have time enough. How about wishing, now we are here?" he went on, stooping to look into the well. "Your wishes ought to have a double virtue on your birthday."

"I only hope they may."

"What! have you decided on something very important? Seventeen to-day! Lottie, don't wish to be eighteen: that will come much too soon without wishing."

"I don't want to be eighteen. I think seventeen is old enough," she answered dreamily.

"So do I." He was thinking, as he spoke, what a charming childish age it was, and how, before he knew Lottie, he had fancied from books that girls were grown up at seventeen.

"Now I am going to wish," she said seriously, "and you must wish after me." Bending over the pool, she looked earnestly into it, took water in the hollow of her hand and drank. Then, standing back, she made a sign to her companion.

He stepped forward, and saying, with a bright glance, "My wishes must be for you to-day, Queen Lottie," he followed her example. But when he looked up, shaking the cold drops from his hand, he was struck by the intense expression on her downward-bent face. "What has the child been wishing?" he wondered; and an idea flashed suddenly into his mind which almost made him smile. "By Jove!" he said to himself, "there will be a fiery passion one of these fine days, when Lottie falls in love." But even as he thought this the look which had startled him was gone.

"We needn't go back directly, need we?" she said. "Let us rest a little while."

"By all means," Percival replied, "I'm quite ready to rest as long as you like: I consider resting my strong point. What do you say to this bank? Or there is a fallen tree just across there?"

"No. Percival, listen! There are some horrid people coming: let us go on a little farther, out of their way."

He listened: "Yes, there are some people coming. Very likely they are horrid, though we have no fact to go upon except their desire to find the wishing-well: at any rate, we don't want them. Lottie, you are right: let us fly."

They escaped from the glade at the farther end, passed through a gate into a field, and found themselves once more in the broad sunlight. They paused for a moment, dazzled and uncertain which way to go. "Why did those people come and turn us out?" said Thorne regretfully. A shrill scream of laughter rang through the shade which they had just left. "What shall we do now?"

"I don't mind: I like this sunshine," said Lottie. "Percival, don't you think there would be a view up there?"

"Up there" was a grassy little eminence which rose rather abruptly in the midst of the neighboring fields. It was parted from the place where they stood by a couple of meadows.

"I should think there might be."

"Then let us go there. When I see a hill I always feel as if I must get to the top of it."

"I've no objection to that feeling in the present case, as the hill happens to be a very little one," Percival replied. "And the shepherds and shepherdesses in our Arcadia are unpleasantly noisy. But I don't see any gate into the next field."

"Who wants a gate? There's a gap by that old stump."

"And you don't mind this ditch? It isn't very wide," he said as he stood on the bank.

"No, I don't mind it."

He held out his hand: she laid hers on it and sprang lightly across, with a word of thanks. A few months earlier she would have scorned Cock Robin's assistance had the ditch been twice as wide, as that day she would have scorned any assistance but Percival's. It was well that she did not need help, for his outstretched hand, firm as it was, gave her little. It rather sent a tremulous thrill through her as she touched it that was more likely to make her falter than succeed. She was not vexed that he relapsed into silence as they went on their way. In her eyes his aspect was darkly thoughtful and heroic. As she walked by his side the low grass-fields became enchanted meads and the poor little flowers bloomed like poets' asphodel. A lark sang overhead as never bird sang before, and the breeze was sweet with memories of blossom. When they stood on the summit of the little hill the view was fair as Paradise. A big gray stone lay among the tufts of bracken, as if a giant hand had tossed it there in sport. Lottie sat down, leaning against it, and Percival threw himself on the grass at her feet.

She was nerving herself to overcome an unwonted feeling of timidity. She had dreamed of this birthday with childish eagerness. Her fancy had made it the portal of a world of unknown delights. She grew sick with fear, lest through her weakness or any mischance the golden hours should glide by, and no golden joy be secured before the night came on. Golden hours? Were they not rather golden moments on the hillside with Percival? He loved her—she was sure of that—but he was poor, and would never speak. What could she say to him? She bent forward a little that she might see him better as he lay stretched on the warm turf unconscious of her eyes. Through his half-closed lids he watched the little gray-blue butterflies which flickered round him in the sunny air, emerging from or melting into the eternal vault of blue.


She had spoken, and ended the long silence. She almost fancied that her voice shook and sounded strange, but he did not seem to notice it.

"Yes?" he said, and turned his face to her—the face that was the whole world to Lottie.

"Percival, is it true that your father was the eldest son, and that you ought to be the heir?"

He opened his eyes a little at the breathless question. Then he laughed: "I might have known that you could not live three months in Fordborough without hearing something of that."

"It is true, then? Mayn't I know?"

"Certainly." He raised himself on his elbow. "But there is no injustice in the matter, Lottie. The eldest son died, and my father was the second. He wanted to have his own way, as we most of us do, and he gave up his expectations and had it. He did it with his eyes open, and it was a fair bargain."

"He sold his birthright, like Esau? Well, that might be quite right for him, but isn't it rather hard on you?"

"Not at all," he answered promptly. "I never counted on it, and therefore I am not disappointed. Why should I complain of not having what I did not expect to have? Shall I feel very hardly used when the archbishopric of Canterbury falls vacant and they pass me over?"

"But your father shouldn't have given up your rights," the girl persisted.

"Why, Lottie," he said with a smile, "it was before I was born! And I'm not so sure about my rights. I don't know that I have any particular rights or wrongs." There was a pause, and then he looked up. "Suppose the birthright had been Jacob's, and he had thrown it away for Rachel's sake: would you have blamed him?"

"No," said Lottie, with kindling eyes.

"Then Jacob and Rachel's son is not hardly used, and has no cause to complain of his lot," Percival concluded, sinking back lazily.

Lottie was silent for a moment. Then she apparently changed the subject: "Do you remember that day Mrs. Pickering called and talked about William?"

"Oh yes, I remember. I scandalized the old lady, didn't I? Lottie, I'm half afraid I scandalized your mother into the bargain."

"I've been thinking about what you said," Lottie went on very seriously—"about being idle all your life."

"Ah!" said Percival, drawing a long breath. "You are going to lecture me? Well, I don't know why I should be surprised. Every one lectures me: they don't like it, but feel it to be their duty. I dare say Addie will begin this evening." He was amused at the idea of a reproof from Lottie, and settled his smooth cheek comfortably on his sleeve that he might listen at his ease. "Go on," he said: "it's very kind of you, and I'm quite ready."

"Suppose I'm not going to lecture you," said Lottie.

"Why, that's still kinder. What then?"

"Suppose I think you are right."

"Do you?"

"Yes," she answered simply. "William Pickering may spend his life scraping pounds and pence together. Men who can't do anything else may as well do that, for it is nice to be rich. But if you have enough, why should you spend your time over it—the best years of your life which will never come back?"

"Never!" said Percival. "You are right."

There was a long pause. Lottie pulled a bit of fern, and looked at him again. There was a line between his dark brows, as if he were pursuing some thought which her words had suggested, but he held his head down and was silent. She threw the fern away and pressed her hands together: "But, Percival, you do care for money, after all. You set it above everything else, as they all do, only in a different way. You are right in what you say, but they are more honest, for they say and do alike."

"Do I care for money? Lottie, it's the first time I have ever been charged with that."

"Because you talk as if you didn't. But you do. Why did you say you would never marry an heiress? The color went right up to the roots of your hair when they talked about it, and you said it would be contemptible: that was the word—contemptible. Then I suppose if you cared for her, and she loved you with all her heart and soul, you would go away and leave her to hate the world and herself and you, just because she happened to have a little money. And you say you don't care about it!"

"Lottie, you don't know what you are talking about." His eyes were fixed on the turf. She had called up a vision in which she had no part. "You don't understand," he began.

"It is you who don't understand," she answered desperately. "You men judge girls—I don't know how you judge them—not by themselves: by their worldly-wise mammas, perhaps. Do you fancy we are always counting what money men have or what we have? It's you who think so much about it. Oh, Percival!" the strong voice softened to sudden tenderness, "do you think I care a straw about what I shall have one day?"

"Good God!" Percival looked up, and for the space of a lightning flash their eyes met. In hers he read enough to show him how blind he had been. In his she read astonishment, horror, repulsion.

Repulsion she read it, but it was not there. To her dying day Lottie will believe that she saw it in his eyes. Did she not feel an icy stab of pain when she recognized it? Never was she more sure of her own existence than she was sure of this. And yet it was not there. She had suddenly roused him from a dream, and he was bewildered, shocked—sorry for his girl-friend, and bitterly remorseful for himself.

Lottie knew that she had made a terrible mistake, and that Percival did not love her. There was a rushing as of water in her ears, a black mist swaying before her eyes. But in a moment all that was over, and she could look round again. The sunlit world glared horribly, as if it understood and pressed round her with a million eyes to mock her burning shame.

"No, I never thought you cared for money," said Percival, trying to seem unconscious of that lightning glance with all its revelations. He had not the restless fingers so many men have, and could sit contentedly without moving a muscle. But now he was plucking nervously at the turf as he spoke.

"What does it matter?" said Lottie. "I shall come to care for it one of these days, I dare say."

He did not answer. What could he say? He was cursing his blind folly. Poor child! Why, she was only a child, after all—a beautiful, headstrong, wilful child, and it was not a year since he met her in the woods with torn frock and tangled hair, her long hands bleeding from bramble-scratches and her lips stained with autumn berries. How fiercely and shyly she looked at him with her shining eyes! He remembered how she stopped abruptly in her talk and answered him in monosyllables, and how, when he left the trio, the clear, boyish voice broke instantly into a flood of happy speech. As he lay there now, staring at the turf, he could see his red-capped vision of Liberty as plainly as if he stood on the woodland walk again with the September leaves above him. He felt a rush of tender, brotherly pity for the poor mistaken child—"brotherly" in default of a better word. Probably a brother would have been more keenly alive to the forward folly of Lottie's conduct. Percival would have liked to hold out his hand to the girl, to close it round hers in a tight grasp of fellowship and sympathy, and convey to her, in some better way than the clumsy utterance of words, that he asked her pardon for the wrong he had unconsciously done her, and besought her to be his friend and comrade for ever. But he could not do anything of the kind: he dared not even look up, lest a glance should scorch her as she quivered in her humiliation. He ended as he began, by cursing the serene certainty that all was so harmless and so perfectly understood, which had blinded his eyes and brought him to this.

And Lottie? She hardly knew what she thought. A wild dream of a desert island in tropic seas, with palms towering in the hot air and snow-white surf dashing on the coral shore, and herself and Cock Robin parted from all the world by endless leagues of ocean, flitted before her eyes. But that was impossible, absurd.


He was laughing at her, no doubt—scorning her in his heart. Oh, why had she been so mad? Suppose a thunder-bolt were to fall from the blue sky and crush him into eternal silence as he lay at her feet pulling his little blades of grass? No! Lottie did not wish that: the thought was hideous. Yet had not such a wish had a momentary life as she stared at the hot blue sky? Was it written there, or wandering in the air, or uttered in the busy humming of the flies, so that as she gazed and listened she became conscious of its purport? Surely she never wished it. Why could not the gray rock against which she leaned totter and fall and bury her for ever, hiding her body from sight while her spirit fled from Percival? Yet even that was not enough: they might meet in some hereafter. Lottie longed for annihilation in that moment of despair.

This could not last. It passed, as the first faintness had done, and with an aching sense of shame and soreness (almost worse to bear because there was no exaltation in it) she came back to every-day life. She pushed her hair from her forehead and got up. "I suppose you are not going to stay here all day?" she said.

Percival stretched himself with an air of indolent carelessness: "No, I suppose not. Do you think duty calls us to go back at once?"

"It is getting late," was her curt reply; and he rose without another word.

She was grave and quiet: if anything, she was more self-possessed than he was, only she never looked at him. Perhaps if he could have made her understand what was in his heart when first he realized the meaning of her hasty words, she might have grasped the friendly hand he longed to hold out to her. But not now. Her face had hardened strangely, as if it were cut in stone. They went down the hill in silence, Percival appearing greatly interested in the landscape. As they crossed the level meadows Lottie looked round with a queer fancy that she might meet the other Lottie there, the girl who had crossed them an hour before. At the ditch Thorne held out his hand again. She half turned, looked straight into his eyes with a passionate glance of hatred, and sprang across, leaving him to follow.

He rejoined her as she reached the glade. While they had been on the hill the sun had sunk below the arching boughs, and half the beauty of the scene was gone. The noisy picnic party had unpacked their hampers, the turf was littered with paper and straw, and a driver stood in a central position, with his head thrown back, drinking beer from a bottle. Lottie went straight to the well and took another draught.

"Two wishes in one day?" said Percival.

"Second thoughts are best," she answered, turning coldly away. "Is there no other way home? I hate walking the same way twice."

"There is the road: I'm afraid it may be hot, but it would be a change."

"I should prefer the road," she said.

That walk seemed interminable to Percival Thorne. He was ready to believe that the road lengthened itself, in sheer spite, to leagues of arid dust, and that every familiar landmark fled before him. At last, however, they approached a point where two ways diverged—the one leading straight into the old town, while the other, wide and trimly kept, passed between many bright new villas and gardens. At that corner they might part. But before they reached it a slim, gray-clad figure appeared from the suburban road and strolled leisurely toward them. Percival looked, looked again, shaded his eyes and looked. "Why, it's Horace!" he exclaimed.

Lottie made no reply, but she awoke from her sullen musing, a light flashed into her eyes, and she quickened her pace toward the man who should deliver her from her tête-à-tête with Percival.



Percival advanced to meet his cousin. "You here, Horace?" he said.

"So it seems," the other replied, in a voice which sounded exactly as if Percival had answered his own question.

The two young men were wonderfully alike, though hardly one person in a hundred could see it. They were exactly the same height, their features were similar, they walked across the room in precisely the same way, and unconsciously reproduced each other's tricks of manner with singular fidelity. Yet any remark on this resemblance would almost certainly encounter a wondering stare, and "Oh, do you think so? Well, I must confess I can't see much likeness myself;" the fact being that the similarity was in form and gait, while both color and expression differed greatly. Horace's hair had the same strong waves as Percival's, but it was chestnut-brown, his eyes were a clear light gray, his complexion showed a fatal delicacy of white and red. His expression was more varying, his smile was readier and his glance more restless.

He had once taken a college friend, whose hobby was photography, to Brackenhill. Young Felton arrived with all his apparatus, and photographed the whole household with such inordinate demands on their time, and such atrocious results, that every one fled from him in horror. Horace was the most patient of his victims, and Felton declared that he would have a good one of Thorne. But even Horace was tired out at last, and said very mildly that he didn't particularly care for the smell of the stuff, and he was afraid his portraits wouldn't help him to a situation if ever he wanted one—apply, stating terms and enclosing carte; that he thought it uncommonly kind of Felton to take so much trouble, but if ever he let him try again, he'd be—Sissy was there, and the sentence, which had been said over his shoulder as he leaned out of the window, ended in a puff of smoke up into the blue. Felton begged for one more, and persuaded Sissy to be his advocate. "I've an idea that something will come of it," said the hapless photographer. Horace yielded at last, and sat down, grimly resolute that he would yield no more. Something did come of it. Felton got it very much too dark, and the result was a tolerable photograph and a startling likeness of Percival.

The incident caused some little amusement at Brackenhill, and visitors were duly puzzled with the portrait. But it was not long remembered, and people dropped into their former habit of thinking that there was but a slight resemblance between the cousins. Only, Percival carried off the photograph, and was interested for a week or two in questions of doubtful identity, looking up a few old cases of mysterious claimants, and speculating as to the value of the testimony for and against them.

Horace shook hands with Lottie, and uttered his neatly-worded birthday wishes. Her answer was indistinctly murmured, but she looked up at him, and he paused, struck as by something novel and splendid, when he encountered the dark fire of her eyes. "I left them wondering what had become of you," he said. "They thought you were wandering about alone somewhere, and had lost yourself."

"Instead of which we met on the road, didn't we?" said Percival.

"Yes," she answered indifferently.—"And you came to look for me?"

"Of course. I was on my way to hunt up the town-crier and to make our loss known to the police. In half an hour's time we should have been dragging all the ponds."

"I think I'd better go and set mamma's anxious mind at rest," said Lottie with a short laugh. "Good-bye for the present." She was gone in a moment, leaving the young men standing in the middle of the road. Horace made a movement as if to follow her, then checked himself and looked at his cousin.

Percival made haste to speak: "So you have come down for the birthday-party, too? Where are you staying?"

"Oh, the Blakes find me a bed. I'm off again to-morrow morning."

"You are now at Scarborough with my aunt? I have it on Sissy's authority."

"There's no occasion to disturb that faith," said Horace lightly. "Are you going into the town? I'll walk a little way with you."

"You are not going to see them at Brackenhill before you leave?"

Horace shook his head: "Say nothing about me. Did you tell them where you were going?"

"No. I don't suppose they know of the Blakes' existence."

"So much the better. I'm not going to enlighten them."

They strolled on side by side, and for a minute neither spoke. Horace was chafing because it had occurred to him that afternoon that Mrs. Blake seemed rather to take his devotion to Addie for granted. His path was made too smooth and obvious, and it was evident that the prize might be had for the asking. Consequently, Master Horace, who was not at all sure that he wanted it, was irritable and inclined to swerve aside.

"Are not you playing a dangerous game?" said Percival. "Sooner or later some one will mention the fact of these visits to the squire, and there'll be a row."

"Well, then, there must be a row. It's uncommonly hard if I'm never to speak to any one without going to Brackenhill first to ask leave," said Horace discontentedly. "How should you like it yourself?"

"Not at all."

"No more do I. I'm tired of being in leading-strings, and the long and short of it is that I mean to have my own way in this, at any rate."

"In this? Is this a matter of great importance, then? Horace, mind what you are after with the Blakes."

"You're a nice consistent sort of fellow," said Horace.

"Oh, you may call me what you like," Percival replied.

"Who introduced me to these people before they came to Fordborough? Who comes down to Brackenhill—the dullest hole, now there's no shooting—because it's Lottie Blake's birthday? Whose name is a sort of household word here—Percival this and Percival that? Percival without any Thorne to it, mind."

"I plead guilty. What then?"

"What then? Why, I wish you to remark that this is your example, while your precept is—"

"Take care what you are about with the Blakes. Yes, old fellow, you'd better leave my example alone, and stick to the precept. My wisdom takes that form, I admit." He spoke with more meaning than Horace perceived.

"Well, thanks for your advice," said the young man with a laugh. "Though I can't see any particular harm in my coming down to-day."

"No harm. Only remember that there is such a place as Brackenhill."

"The governor oughtn't to find fault with me, since you're in the same boat. He never thinks you can do wrong."


"You're a lucky fellow to have only yourself to please."

"Very lucky," said Percival dryly. "Will you change places with me?"

"Change places? What do you mean?"

The other looked fixedly at him, and said in a pointed manner, "I fancy it might easily be managed—with Addie Blake's help."

The suggestion was unpleasant. Horace winced, and vented his displeasure in a random attack: "And why Addie, I should like to know? How can you tell it is Addie at all?"

"Who, then?"

"Why not Lottie?" The words were uttered without a moment's thought, and might have been forgotten as soon as said. But Percival was taken by surprise, and a look of utter incredulity flashed across his face. Horace caught it and was piqued. "Unless you understand her so well that you are sure that no one else has a chance. Of course, if that is the case—"

"Not at all," Percival exclaimed. "It's not for me to pretend to understand Lottie: I'm not such a fool as that."

"All the same," Horace said to himself, "you think you understand her better than I do, and you don't believe I should have a chance if I tried to cut you out. Well, Mr. Percy, you may be right, but, on the other hand, you may be mistaken." And, as he walked back to the Blakes, Horace hurriedly resolved to teach his cousin that he was not to consider Lottie his exclusive property. He knew the folly of such a proceeding, but who was ever hindered from obeying the dictates of wounded vanity by the certainty that he had much better not?

Percival sincerely wished the evening over. He dared not stay away, lest his absence should provoke comment, but he feared some childish outbreak of petulance on Lottie's part. When he saw her he was startled by her beauty. Her cheeks were flushed and her eyes were full of brilliant meaning. She cast a defiant glance at him as she went by. She was burning with shame, and maddened by the cruel injustice of her fate. A white light seemed to have poured in upon her, and she found it incredible that she could ever have felt or acted as she had felt and acted that afternoon. She said to herself that she might as well have been punished for her conduct in a dream.

Percival plucked up courage enough to go and ask her to dance. He was distressed and pitiful, and longing to make amends, and stood before her like the humblest of suitors. She assented coolly enough. No one saw that there was anything amiss, though he was quick to remark that she gave him only square dances. No more waltzes with Lottie for him. But Horace had one, and when it was over he leaned almost exhausted against the wall, while Lottie stood by his side and fanned herself. The fan seemed to throb in unison with her strong pulses, quickened by the dance and slackening as she rested.

"That was splendid," said Horace with breathless brevity. "Best waltz I ever had."

"Ah!" said Lottie, turning toward him. "Suppose Addie heard that, Mr. Thorne?"

They looked straight into each other's eyes, and Horace felt a strange thrill run through him. He evaded her question with a laugh. "Why do you call me Mr. Thorne?" he asked. "If you call that fellow by his Christian name, why not me? Mine isn't such a mouthful as Percival: try it."

"We knew him first, you see," Lottie replied with much innocence.

"As if that had anything to do with it! If you had known my grandfather first, I suppose you would have called him Godfrey?"

"Perhaps he wouldn't have asked me," said Lottie.

Horace smiled: "Well, perhaps he wouldn't. He isn't much given to making such requests, certainly. But I do ask you. Look!" he exclaimed, with sudden animation, "there's Mrs. Blake taking that dried-up little woman—what is her name?—to the piano. I may have the next dance, I hope."

"How many more things are you going to ask for all at once?" The bright fan kept up its regular come and go, and Lottie's eyes were very arch above it. "I'm sure you don't take after your grandfather."

"Believe me," said Horace, "you would be awfully bored if I did. But you haven't given me an answer. This dance?"

"I've promised it to Mr. Hardwicke. Adieu, Horace!" And before he could utter a syllable she was across the room, standing by the little spinster who was going to play, and helping her to undo a clashing bracelet of malachite and silver which hung on her bony wrist.

Horace, gazing after her, felt a hand on his shoulder and looked round.

"I'm off when this dance is over," said Percival, who seemed weary and depressed. "You still wish me not to say that I have seen you?"

Horace nodded: "I shall be at Scarborough again to-morrow night. There's no occasion to say anything."

"All right. You know best."

"Who can tell what may happen?" said Horace. "Why should one be in a hurry to do anything unpleasant? Put it off, and you may escape it altogether. For instance, the governor may change all at once, as people do in tracts and Christmas books. I don't say it's likely, but I feel that I ought to give him the chance."

"Very good," said Percival; and he strolled away. Horace noted his preoccupied look with a half smile, but after a moment his thoughts and eyes went back to Lottie Blake, and he forgot all about his cousin and Brackenhill.



Most country towns have some great event which marks the year, or some peculiarity which distinguishes them from their neighbors. This one has its annual ball, that its races, another its volunteer reviews. One seems to relish no amusement which has not a semi-religious flavor, and excels in school-feasts, choir-festivals, and bazaars. Some places only wake up on the fifth of November, and some are devoted to amateur theatricals. Fordborough had its agricultural show.

Crowds flocked to it, not because they cared for fat cattle, steam ploughs and big vegetables, but because everybody was to be seen there. You stared at the prize pig side by side with the head of one of the great county families, who had a faint idea that he had been introduced to you somewhere (was it at the last election?), and politely entered into conversation with you on the chance. You might perhaps suspect that his remembrance of you was not very clear, when you reflected afterward that he

Asked after my wife, who is dead,
And my children, who never were born;

but at any rate he meant to be civil, and people who saw you talking together would not know what he said. Or you might find the old friend you had not seen for years, gold eye-glass in hand, peering at a plate of potatoes. Or you were young, and there was a girl—no, the girl, the one girl in all the world—bewitchingly dressed, a miracle of beauty, looking at Jones's patent root-pulper. You lived for months on the remembrance of the words you exchanged by a friendly though rather deafening threshing-machine when her mamma (who never liked you) marched serenely on, unconscious that Edith was lingering behind. Then there was the flower-show, where a band from the nearest garrison town played the last new waltzes, and people walked about and looked at everything except the flowers. Fordborough was decked with flags and garlands, and appropriate sentiments on the subject of agriculture, in evergreen letters stitched on calico, were lavishly displayed. Every one who possessed anything beyond a wheelbarrow got into it and drove about, the bells clashed wildly in the steeple, and everything was exceedingly merry—if it didn't rain.

People in that part of the world always filled their houses with guests when the time for the show came round. Even at Brackenhill, though the squire said he was too old for visitors, he made a point of inviting Godfrey Hammond, while Mrs. Middleton, as soon as the day was fixed, sent off a little note to Horace. It was taken for granted that Horace would come. Aunt Harriet considered his invariable presence with them on that occasion as a public acknowledgment of his position at Brackenhill. But the day was gone by when Mr. Thorne delighted to parade his grandson round the field, showing off the slim handsome lad, and proving to the county that with his heir by his side he could defy the son who had defied him. Matters were changed since then. The county had, as it were, accepted Horace. The quarrel was five-and-twenty years old, and had lost its savor. It was tacitly assumed that Alfred had in some undefined way behaved very badly, that he had been very properly put on one side, and that in the natural course of things Horace would succeed his grandfather, and was a nice, gentlemanly young fellow. Mr. Thorne had only to stick to what he had done to ensure the approval of society.

But people did not want, and did not understand, the foreign-looking young man with the olive complexion and sombre eyes who had begun of late years to come and go about Brackenhill, and who was said to be able to turn old Thorne round his finger. This was not mere rumor. The squire's own sister complained of his infatuation. It is true that she also declared that she believed the newcomer to be a very good young fellow, but the complaint was accepted and the addition smiled away. "It is easy to see what her good young man wants there," said her friends; and there was a general impression that it was a shame. Opinions concerning the probable result varied, and people offered airily to bet on Horace or Percival as their calculations inclined them. The majority thought that old Thorne could never have the face to veer round again; but there was the possibility on Percival's side that his grandfather might die intestate, and with so capricious and unaccountable a man it did not seem altogether improbable. "Then," as people sagely remarked, "this fellow would inherit—that is, if Alfred's marriage was all right." No one had any fault, except of a negative kind, to find with Percival, yet the majority of Mr. Thorne's old friends were inclined to dislike him. He did not hunt or go to races: he cared little for horses and dogs. No one understood him. He was indolent and sweet-tempered, and he was supposed to be satirical and scheming. What could his grandfather see in him to prefer him to Horace? Percival would have answered with a smile, "I am not his heir."

Mr. Thorne was happy this July, his boy having come to Brackenhill for a few days which would include the show.

It was the evening before, and they were all assembled. Horace, coffee-cup in hand, leant in his favorite attitude against the chimney-piece. He was troubled and depressed, repulsed Mrs. Middleton's smiling attempts to draw him out, and added very little to the general conversation. "Sulky" was Mr. Thorne's verdict.

Percival was copying music for Sissy. She stood near him, bending forward to catch the full light of the lamp to aid her in picking up a dropped stitch in her aunt's knitting. Close by them sat Godfrey Hammond in an easy-chair.

He was a man of three or four and forty, by no means handsome, but very well satisfied with his good figure and his keen, refined features. He wanted color, his closely-cut hair was sandy, his eyes were of the palest gray, and his eyebrows faintly marked. He was slightly underhung, and did not attempt to hide the fact, wearing neither beard nor moustache. His face habitually wore a questioning expression.

Godfrey Hammond never lamented his want of good looks, but he bitterly regretted the youth which he had lost. His regret seemed somewhat premature. His fair complexion showed little trace of age, he had never known what illness was, and men ten or fifteen years younger might have envied him his slight active figure. But in truth the youth which he regretted was a dream. It was that legendary Golden Age which crowns the whole world with far-off flowers and fills hearts with longings for its phantom loveliness. The present seemed to Hammond hopeless, commonplace and cold, a dull procession of days tending downward to the grave. He was thus far justified in his regrets, that if his youth were as full of beauty and enthusiasm as he imagined it, he was very old indeed.

"What band are they going to have to-morrow, Percival?" asked Sissy.

"I did hear, but I forget. Stay, they gave me a programme when I was at the bookseller's this afternoon." He thrust his hand into his pocket and pulled out a handful of papers and letters. "It was a pink thing—I thought you would like it: what has become of it, I wonder?"

As he turned the papers over a photograph slipped out of its envelope. Sissy saw it: "Percival, is that some one's carte? May I look?"

"What!" said Godfrey Hammond, sticking a glass in his eye and peering short-sightedly, "Percy taking to carrying photographs about with him! Wonders will never cease! What fair lady may it be?—Come, man, let us have a look at her."

Percival colored very slightly, and then, as it were, contradicted his blush by tossing the envelope and its contents across to Godfrey: "No fair lady. Ask Sissy what she thinks of him."

"Why, it's young Lisle!" said Hammond. Mr. Thorne looked up with sudden interest.

Percival reclaimed the photograph: "Here, Sissy, what do you say? Should you like him for your album?"

"For my album? A man I never saw! Who is he?" Miss Langton inquired. "Oh, he's very handsome, though, isn't he?"

Percival saw his grandfather was looking. "It's Mr. Lisle's son," he said.

"And very handsome? Doesn't take after his father."

(Mr. Lisle had been Percival's guardian for the few months between his father's death and his majority. It had been a great grief to Mr. Thorne. Something which he said to his grandson when he first came to Brackenhill had been met by the rejoinder, very cool though perfectly respectful in tone, "But, sir, if Mr. Lisle does not disapprove—" The power-loving old man could not pardon Mr. Lisle for having an authority over Percival which should have belonged to him.)

He put on his spectacles to look at the photograph which Sissy brought. It was impossible to deny the beauty of the face, though the style was rather effeminate: the features were almost faultless.

"Is it like him?" said Sissy, looking up at young Thorne.

"Very like," he replied: "it doesn't flatter him at all, if that is what you mean: does it, Hammond?"

"Not at all."

"He used to sing in the choir of their church," Percival went on. "They photographed him once in his surplice—a sort of ideal chorister. All the old ladies went into raptures, and said he looked like an angel."

"And the young ladies?" said Mrs. Middleton.

"Showed that they thought it."

"H'm!" said Mr. Thorne. "And where may this paragon be?"

"At Oxford."

"Going into the Church?"

"I don't know, I'm sure. Not that I ever heard: I don't fancy his tastes lie that way. He is very musical: probably that was why he joined the choir."

"I should say Lisle had money enough," said Godfrey Hammond: "he lives in very good style—if anything, a little too showy perhaps. He won't want a profession. Most likely he will spend his life in thinking that one of these days he will do something wonderful and convulse the musical world. Happy fellow!"

"But suppose he doesn't do it?" said Sissy.

"Happier fellow still! He will never have a doubt, and never know what failure is."

"Perhaps," she said, looking at the bright beautiful face, "it would be better if Mr. Lisle were poor."

"I doubt if he would appreciate the kindness which doomed him to poverty," smiled Hammond.

"But perhaps he would not only dream then of something great: he might do it," said Sissy. "That is, do you think he could really do anything great?"

"I don't know, I'm sure. Talent looks very big in a small room."

"Is he the only one?" Mrs. Middleton inquired of Percival.

"The only son: there is a daughter."

"A daughter! Is she as wonderful as her brother?" Sissy exclaimed. "Have you got her photograph? What is she like?"

"I will tell you," said Godfrey Hammond, speaking very deliberately in his high-pitched voice. "Miss Lisle is a very charming young lady. She is like her brother, but she is not so good-looking, and she is decidedly more masculine."

"Oh!" in a disdainful tone. Then, turning swiftly round: "But what do you say, Percival?"

He answered her, but he looked at Godfrey: "Hardly a fair description—not so much a portrait as a caricature. Miss Lisle's features are not so perfect as her brother's: she would not attract the universal admiration which he does. But I think there could be no question that hers is the nobler face."

"She is fortunate in her champion," said Hammond. "It's all right, no doubt, and the fault is mine. I may not have so keen an eye for latent nobility."

"Stick to her brother, then, and let Miss Lisle alone;" and Percival stooped over his copying again. Sissy came back to the table, but as she passed the lonely figure by the chimney-piece she spoke: "You are very silent, to-night, Horace."

"I don't seem to have much to say for myself, do I?"

She took up her knitting, and after a moment he came and stood by her. The light fell on his face. "And you don't look well," she said.

"There's not much amiss with me."

"I shall betray you," said Percival as he ruled a line. "He coughed in the hall, Sissy: I heard him, three times."

"Oh, my dear boy, you should take more care," exclaimed Aunt Middleton: "I know you have been dreadfully ill."

"I was blissfully unconscious of it, then," said Horace. "It was nothing, and I'm all right, thank you.—You are very busy, Sissy: what are you worrying about down there?" He laid his hand caressingly on her shoulder. Percival and she acted brother and sister sometimes, but with Horace, whose pet and playfellow she had been as a little child, it was much more like reality.

"Only a stitch gone."

"Well, let it go: you have lots without it."

"You silly boy! it isn't that. Don't you know it would run farther and farther, and ruin the whole work if it were not picked up at once?"

"You may not be aware of it," said Hammond, "but that sounds remarkably like a tract."

"Then I hope you'll all profit by it.—Horace, do you hear? If ever you drop a stitch, be warned." She looked up as she said it, and something in his face made her fancy that he had dropped a stitch of some kind.

When she was saying good-night to Percival, Sissy asked abruptly, in a low voice, "What is Miss Lisle's name?"

He answered, "Judith."



Sissy, when she reached her room that night, drew up the blind and stood looking out at the park, which was flooded with moonlight. "It ought to be Percival's," she thought. "I should like Horace to have plenty of money, but the old house ought to be Percival's. He is so good: he screens Horace instead of thinking of himself. I do believe Horace is in some scrape now. And Aunt Middleton is always thinking about him, too: she won't let Uncle Thorne be just to Percival. Oh, it is a shame!—If he had Brackenhill perhaps he would marry Miss Lisle. I wonder if he is in love with her? He spoke so coolly, not as if he were the least bit angry, when Godfrey Hammond laughed at her. But he said she had a noble face.—What did it remind me of when he said 'Judith'?" Sissy was perplexed for a few moments, and then their talk on the terrace a month before flashed into her mind—"Jael, or Judith, or Charlotte Corday," and she remembered the very intonation with which Percival had repeated "Judith." "Ah!" said the girl half aloud, with a sudden intuition, "he was thinking of her when he talked of heroic women!—Why wasn't I born noble and heroic as well as others? Is it my fault if I can't bear people to be angry with me—if I always stop and think and hesitate, and then the moment is gone? I couldn't have driven the nail in, like Jael, for fear there should be just time for him to look up at me. I should have thrown the hammer down and died, I think. I wonder what made her able to do it—how she struck, and how she felt when the nail went crashing in? I wonder whether I could have done it if Sisera had hated Percival—if I knew he meant to kill him—if it had been Percival's life or his?"

Sissy proceeded to ponder the biblical narrative (with this slight variation), but she came to no satisfactory decision. She inclined to the opinion that Sisera would have woke up, somehow. She could not imagine what she could possibly feel like when the deed was done, except that she was certain she should be afraid ever to be alone with herself again for one moment as long as she lived.

So she went back to the original question: "I dare say Miss Lisle is brave and calm, and horribly strong-minded: why wasn't I born the same as she was? Perhaps Percival would have cared for me then. He did say even I might find something I could die for: he didn't think I was quite a coward. Ah! if I could only show him I wasn't!"

She stood for a moment looking out: "He may marry Miss Lisle if he likes, and—and I hope they'll be very happy indeed. But if ever I get a chance I'll do something—for Percival."

With which magnanimous determination Sissy went to bed; and if she did not have a nightmare tumult of Jael and Judith, nails and hammers, and murdered men about her pillow as she slept, I can but think her fortunate. But her last thought was a happy one: "Perhaps he doesn't care about her, after all!"



Fordborough had a glorious day for the agricultural show. Not a cloud dimmed the brightness of the sky: a breath of warm wind stirred the flags from time to time, and all was going as merrily as possible. The dogs were all barking in their special division, the poultry were all cackling in theirs. People had looked at the animals, as in duty bound, and were now putting their catalogues in their pockets and crowding into the flower-show.

The Brackenhill party were there. Mr. Thorne, his sister, Godfrey Hammond and Miss Langton had come over in state behind the sleek chestnut horses, and the young men had arranged to follow in the dog-cart. At present the two divisions had not met—nay, showed no symptom of uniting, but rather of breaking up into three or four. Mrs. Middleton and Sissy had been walking about, encountering a bewildering number of acquaintances, and earnestly endeavoring to disseminate a knowledge of the fact that they considered it a beautiful day. Godfrey Hammond, their squire for some time, after arranging when he would meet them by the tent where the potatoes were, had taken himself off to look up some of the country gentlemen whom he met year after year when he came down to Brackenhill. There happened to be several squires of the old sort in the neighborhood, and with these Godfrey Hammond enjoyed a friendship based on mutual contempt. He laughed at them, and they knew it; they laughed at him, and he knew it; and each being convinced that his cause for scorn was the one well founded, they all got on delightfully together. Mr. Thorne, meanwhile, was strolling round the field, halting to talk from time to time, but fettered by no companionship.

He was presently pounced on by Mrs. Rawlinson, a fair, flushed beauty of two-and-forty with a daughter of fifteen. People with a turn for compliment always supposed that this daughter was Mrs. Rawlinson's sister, and when that assumption was negatived there had once been a prompt reply, "Oh, your step-daughter you mean!" (The man who invented that last refinement of politeness was welcome to dine at the Rawlinsons' whenever he liked, and, the dinners being good, he was to be met there about twice a week.)

She came down upon Mr. Thorne like a bright blue avalanche. "Ah!" she said, having shaken hands with him, "I saw what you were doing. Now, do you agree with Mr. Horace Thorne in his taste? Oh, it's no use denying it: I saw you were looking at the beautiful Miss Blake."

"It is very possible," Mr. Thorne replied, "only I didn't know of her existence."

"Oh, how severe you are! I suppose you mean you don't admire that style? Well, now you mention it, perhaps—"

"I simply mean what I say. I was not aware that there was a Miss Blake on the ground to-day."

"Well, I am surprised! You are in the dark! Do you see those tall girls in black and white, close by their mother, that fine woman in green?"

"Perfectly. And which is the beautiful Miss Blake?"

"Oh!" with a little giggle. "Fancy! Which is the beautiful Miss Blake? Why, the elder one, of course: there! she is just looking round."

Mr. Thorne put up his eye-glass. "Indeed!" he said; "and who may Miss Blake be?"

"They have come to that pretty white house where old Miss Hayward lived. Mr. Blake was a relation of hers, and she left it to him. He has some sort of business in London—very rich, they say, and all the young men are after the daughters."

"Probably the daughters haven't the same opinion of the young men of the present day that I have," said Mr. Thorne; "so I needn't pity them."

"Fancy your not knowing anything about them! I am surprised!" Mrs. Rawlinson repeated. "Such friends of Mr. Horace Thorne's, too! Ah, by the way, you must mind what you say about the young men who are after them. He's quite a favorite there, I'm told."

"Perhaps Horace told you," the old gentleman suggested with a quiet smile: "the news sounds as if it might come from that authority."

"Oh, no: I think not. Any one in Fordborough could tell you all about it. I suppose this summer—But, dear me! here am I rattling on: perhaps I am letting secrets out."

"Not much of a secret if it is Fordborough talk," said Mr. Thorne blandly. But something in the expression of his eyes made Mrs. Rawlinson feel that she was on dangerous ground, and at any rate she had said enough. She hurried off to greet a friend she saw in the distance.

Mr. Thorne was speedily joined by a neighboring landowner. "I didn't know I should see you here to-day," he said to the newcomer. "I heard you were laid up."

Mr. Garnett cursed his gout, but declared himself better.

"Look here," said Thorne, laying his hand on the other's sleeve, "you know every one. Who and what are these Blakes?"

"Bless me! you don't mean you don't know? Why, the name's up in every railway-station in the United Kingdom. 'Patent British Corn-Flour'—that's the man. 'Delicious Pudding in Five Minutes'—you know the sort of thing. I don't know that he does much in it now: I suppose he has a share. Very rich, they say."

Mr. Thorne had withdrawn his hand, and was listening with the utmost composure. "Ah!" he said, "very rich? And so all these good Fordborough people are paying court to him?"

"No," Garnett grinned, "they don't get the chance: don't see much of him. No loss. They pay court to the daughters: it does just as well, and it's a great deal pleasanter. Dear! dear! what a money-loving age it is! Nothing but trade, trade, trade! We shall see a duke behind the counter before long if we go on at this rate. Gentlemen used to be more particular in our young days—eh, Thorne?" Having said this, he remembered that Thorne's son married the candlemaker's daughter. For a moment he was confounded, and then had to repress an inclination to laugh.

"Ah, it was a different world altogether," said Thorne, gliding dexterously away from the corn-flour and candles too. "There was a young fellow staying with us a little while ago who was wild about photography. If he didn't get just the right focus, the thing came out all wrong: he always made a mess of his groups. The focus was right for us in our young days, eh? Now we have to stand on one side and come out all awry. No fault in the sun, you know."

"I don't care much about photographs," said Garnett. "All very well for the young folks, I dare say, but I sha'n't make a pretty picture on this side of doomsday!" And indeed it did not seem likely that he would. So he departed, grinning, to say to the next man he met, "What do you think I've been doing? Laughing about Blake's patent corn-flour to old Thorne: forgot the composite candles—did, upon my word! Said 'Gentlemen used to be more particular in our young days,' and the minute it was out of my mouth I remembered Jim and the candles. Fine girl she was, certainly. Poor old Thorne! he was terribly cut up at the time. It was grand to see the two old fellows meet—as good as a play. Thorne held out just the tips of his fingers: I believe he thought if he shook hands with old Benham he should smell of tallow for ever. Ever see Benham's monument? They ordered it down from town—man knew nothing of course: how should he? So he went and put some angels weeping, and an inverted torch, just like a bundle of candles. Fact, by Jove! I went to have a look at it myself one day. Some of the Benhams were very sore about it. Dear! dear! I shouldn't think the old fellow could ever have a quiet night there with that over him. Only, as he was covered up snugly first, perhaps he doesn't know;" and Garnett, chuckling to himself at the idea, marched off to have a look at the prize pig.

Meanwhile, the young Thornes had arrived, and came strolling around the field—a noticeable pair enough, tall, handsome and well dressed, walking side by side in all faith and friendliness, as they were not often to walk again. When people talked of them afterward a good many remembered how they looked on that day. Apparently, Horace had resolved to throw off his trouble of the night before, and had succeeded. There was something almost defiant in the very brightness of his aspect, and the heat had flushed him a little, so that no one would have echoed Sissy's exclamation of "You don't look well." On the contrary, he was congratulated on his looks by many of his old friends, and seemed full of life and energy.

Turning the corner of one of the tents, the two came suddenly on the Blakes. There was not one of the four who was utterly unconcerned at that meeting, though the interests and motives which produced the little thrill of excitement were curiously mingled and opposed. Two pairs of eyes flashed bright signals of mutual understanding: the others made no sign of what might be hidden in their depths. Delicately-gloved hands were held out, Mrs. Blake came forward fluent and friendly, and the two groups melted into one.

Horace and Addie led the way round the tent. Percival followed with Lottie and her mother, feeling that he had never rightly appreciated the latter's conversational powers before. When they emerged into the sunlight again, they encountered Mrs. Pickering and her girls, and in the talk that ensued our hero found himself standing by Addie.

"Percival," she said in a low, quick tone, "don't be surprised. I want to say a word to you. Look as if it were nothing."

Though he was startled, he contrived not to betray it. After the first moment there is small danger of failing to appear indifferent—very great danger of seeming preternaturally indifferent. Percival had tact enough to avoid this. He listened, and replied with the polite attention, which was natural to him, but his manner was tinged—any words I can find seem too coarse to describe it—with just the faintest shade of languor, just the slightest possible show of scorn and weariness of the great agricultural show itself. It was not enough to attract notice: it was quite enough to preclude any idea of excited interest.

"I am in a little difficulty," said Addie. "You could help me if you would."

"You may command me."

"You will not mind a little trouble? And you would keep my secret? I have no right to ask, but there is no one—I think you are my friend."

"Suppose me a brother for this occasion, Addie. Waste no more time in apologies."

"A brother! Be it so. Then, my brother, I have to go through Langley Wood to-morrow evening, and I am afraid to go alone."

"I will gladly be your escort. Where shall I meet you?"

"There is a milestone about a quarter of a mile on the road to our house, after you have passed the gate into the wood. Don't come any farther. Somewhere between the gate and that."

"I know it. At what time?"

"Half-past eight, or a few minutes earlier. Will that suit you?"

"Perfectly. I will be there."

"If you don't see me before nine don't wait for me. I shall have failed somehow."

"I understand," said Percival.

"I will explain to-morrow. You must trust me till then."

"You shall do as you please. I don't ask for any explanations, remember. Have you been having much croquet lately?"

"Oh, much as usual. Lottie has been beating me, also as usual. We have joined the Fordborough Croquet Club."

"Then I suspect the former members feel small."

"One or two of the best players feel ill-tempered, I think, unless they make-believe very much. Lottie means to win the ivory mallet, she says; and I think she will. Mrs. Rawlinson's sister always considered herself the champion, and I am sure Lottie," etc., etc.

In short, by the time it occurred to anybody that Percival and Addie were talking together, their conversation, carried smoothly on, was precisely what anybody might hear.

The Pickerings went off in one direction, the Blakes in another, and the young men resumed their walk.

"That's over, and the governor not by," said Horace.

"Don't be too secure," was Percival's reply. "Everybody talks about everybody else at Fordborough."

"Well," said Horace, who apparently would not be discouraged, "it's something not to have been standing between the old gentleman and Aunt Middleton, and then to have seen Mrs. Blake sailing straight at one, her face illuminated with a smile visible to the naked eye a quarter of a mile off—eh, Percy?"

"You are a lucky fellow, no doubt," said Percival.

"And, after all, it is quite possible—"

"That you may be a very lucky fellow indeed? Yes, it is quite possible. But I don't quite see what you are after, Horace."

("Nor I," thought Horace to himself, "and that's the charm of it, somehow.")

"Surely it isn't worth while getting into trouble with my grandfather for a mere flirtation."

"If you always stop to think whether a thing is worth while or not, Percy, I wouldn't be you for all the money that ever was coined."

"And if it is more," said the other, not heeding the remark—"I like fair play, but if it is more—"

"What then?" For Percival hesitated.

"We'll talk of that another time," said the latter. "Not now. Only don't be rash. Look! there's Sissy."

"How pretty she is!" thought Percival, as they went toward her. "What can Horace see in Addie Blake, that he should prefer her? She is a fine girl, handsome—magnificent, if you like—but Sissy is like a beautiful old picture, sweet and delicate and innocent. I can't fancy her with secrets like Addie with this Langley Wood mystery of hers. If it had not been for that ideal of mine—"

They had reached the two ladies.

Meanwhile, Mr. Thorne had listened to more odds and ends of gossip, and had gone on his way, warily searching among the shifting, many-colored groups. He was curious, and in due time his curiosity was gratified. The Blake girls passed him so closely that he could have touched them. They knew perfectly well who he was, and Lottie looked at him, but Addie passed on in her queenly fashion, with her head high, apparently not aware of his existence.

"So," said the old gentleman to himself, "that is Horace's taste? Well, she is very superb and disdainful, and I should think Patent Corn-Flour paid pretty well. She might have bestowed a glance on me, as I suppose she destines me the honor of being her grandpapa-in-law, but no doubt she knows what she is about, and it may be wiser to seem utterly unconscious, as Horace has not introduced us yet. Perhaps he will defer that ceremony a little while longer still. As for the other, she looked me straight in the face, as if she didn't care a rap for any man living. I shouldn't think that girl was afraid of anything on earth—or under it or above it, for that matter. A temper of her own, plainly enough. The beautiful Miss Blake is Horace's taste, of course (I could have sworn to that without a word from him), and ninety-nine out of a hundred would agree with him. But if I were five-and-twenty, and had to choose between them, I'd take that fierce-eyed girl and tame her!"

Of which process it may fairly be conjectured that it would have ended in total defeat for Mr. Thorne, or in mutual and inextinguishable hatred, or, it might be—for he was hard as well as capricious—in a Lottie like a broken bow. In neither case a very desirable result.

Godfrey Hammond, looking at his watch, and going in the direction of the tent where the potatoes were, perceived Mrs. Rawlinson, and endeavored to elude her. He loathed the woman, as he candidly owned to himself, because he had once nearly approached the other extreme. It was a horrible thought. What had come over him and her? Either she was strangely and hideously transformed—and how could he tell that as fearful a change might not have come to him?—or else his youth was a time of illusion and bad taste. That perfect time, that golden dawn of manhood, when the world lay before him steeped in rosy light, when every pleasure had its bloom upon it, and every day was crowned with joy—Good Heavens! was it then that he cared to dance the polka in Fordborough drawing-rooms with Mrs. Rawlinson—Lydia Lloyd as she was of old? Little did that fascinating lady think what disgust at the remembrance of his incredible folly was in his soul as he met her.

For she caught him and shook hands with him, and would not let him go till she had reminded him of old times as if they might have been yesterday and might be again to-morrow. He smiled, and blandly made answer as if they two were a pair of antediluvian polka-dancers left in a waltzing age to see another generation spinning gayly round. (He could dance quite as well as Horace when he chose.)

Mrs. Rawlinson did not like his style of conversation, and said abruptly, "I had a talk with Mr. Thorne about half an hour ago. I was surprised! Mr. Horace Thorne seems to keep the old man quite in the dark."

"Mr. Horace Thorne is a clever fellow, then," said Hammond dryly.

"Oh, you know all about it, I dare say. But really, I did think it was too bad. He didn't seem ever to have heard Miss Blake's name. He certainly didn't know her when he saw her."

"Unfortunate man! For Miss Blake so decidedly eclipses the Fordborough young ladies that such ignorance is deplorable. No doubt you did what you could to remove it?"

"Well"—Mrs. Rawlinson tossed her blue bonnet—"I really thought I ought to give him a hint: it seemed to me that it was quite a charity."

"A charity—ah yes, of course. Charity never faileth, does it?" And Hammond raised his hat and bowed himself off.



Have you heard of the dream that she had—
Theresa the saintly?
Come, listen, ye good and ye bad!
And heed it not faintly.
A weird, awful woman she saw,
And wondered what brought her:
In one hand she bore flaming straw,
In the other hand water.
"Where bound?" asked Theresa. "Oh tell!"
This answer was given:
"Theresa, I go to quench hell,
And then to burn heaven."
"But why," asked the saint, "do you make
So wild an endeavor?"
"So that men, for His own holy sake,
May love God for ever."

Epes Sargent.


A voluminous parcel of letters and official documents quite recently brought to light in one of the continental court archives[1] invalidates in many material points the short notices which historians have given us of the captivity and flight from Innsbruck of Princess Clementina Sobiesky, the elder Pretender's wife, and supplies us with an ample and interesting account of this episode in the lives of the two most persecuted men of the day, the Pretender and his father-in-law, Prince James Sobiesky of Poland.

[1] They were discovered by Dr. D. Schönherr, the keeper of the imperial archives at Innsbruck, to whom the writer is indebted for drawing his attention to this interesting discovery. The private imperial archives at Vienna, examined by the writer, yielded also interesting documents.

It will be remembered that after the failure of his Scotch expedition of 1715 the Pretender—or, as he was then commonly styled, the Chevalier de St. George—was obliged to quit France and Germany and retire to Italy, where the misfortunes of his family, proceeding in part from its devotion to the Roman Catholic Church, gave him the best right to expect a hospitable reception. Here he opened a negotiation with Prince James Sobiesky which had for its object his marriage with Princess Clementina, Sobiesky's daughter. Sobiesky was the son of John, king of Poland, the heroic deliverer of Vienna and Christendom from the Turks. This unfortunate prince, having signally failed in his repeated attempts to instal himself upon the Polish throne, vacated by his father's death, had retired to Ohlau, a large estate near Breslau in Silesia belonging to the emperor Charles VI., and with which the latter had invested him.

The negotiations carried on between the two parties ended in the formal betrothal of the Princess Clementina to James III., king of Great Britain and Ireland, as the Pretender styled himself.

Meanwhile, the English government had exhibited great solicitude to frustrate the Pretender's intention of strengthening his cause by contracting a marriage likely to yield an heir to his pretensions to the crown of Great Britain. The Pretender and Sobiesky were both perfectly well aware of this, and hence Sobiesky's anxiety that the union should be completed as soon as possible. Through the vacillating character of the bridegroom valuable time was lost at the last moment, and before the project could be carried out the petty court at Ohlau was surrounded by English spies. We know that in August, 1718, the English government was acquainted with the whole plot, and was using to the utmost the influence which its friendly relationship with the emperor of Germany gave it. A prohibition was obtained from him forbidding all further intercourse between the Pretender and Sobiesky, whose wife, it should be mentioned, was the emperor's aunt.

Sobiesky vainly expostulated with his imperial kinsman. He reminded him that although he was then residing within the frontiers of the empire, he was nevertheless an independent prince; and he begged him to consider that his conduct was unworthy of their close relationship and incompatible with every feeling of gratitude toward the memory of his father, the brave deliverer of Vienna and of Christendom. Charles, who had at this time very good reasons for wishing to keep on a good footing with England, not only turned a deaf ear to the expostulations of Prince Sobiesky, but actually threatened him with his highest displeasure if he did not sever his connection with that "worthless vagabond princeling." Sobiesky, convinced that nothing was to be gained by delay, and quite prepared to sacrifice the favor of his mighty kinsman for the sake of compassing his object, determined to send his daughter to Italy to join her betrothed, with a view to the consummation of the marriage.

In the latter half of September, 1718, Princess Clementina and her mother, accompanied by a suite consisting of a lady-in-waiting, a confidential maid, Monsieur Châteaudoux, a gentleman of the household, with his servant, and Monsieur la Haye,[2] gentleman-in-waiting of the Pretender, left Ohlau for Innsbruck en route for Italy. Secret as the preparations for the journey had been kept, they had not escaped the notice of the English agent at Breslau; and a few hours after the departure of the princess and her party an English and a German courier left that town—the one for London, the other for Warsaw. In a remarkably short time the former had accomplished his journey, and was back again in Vienna, the bearer of an autograph letter from the king, George I., to the emperor Charles. The immediate upshot was a despatch sent off in hot haste to the provincial government of Tyrol, ordering that body to stop the princely party wherever they could lay hands on them, "be it in Innsbruck or any other part of our empire."

[2] A member, no doubt, of the noble Scotch family of Hay, so famous for its devotion to the Jacobite cause.

The twelve privy councillors who constituted the government of Tyrol were "sorely perplexed and harassed by this order;" for it appears that so little time had been lost by the courier on his way to and from London that the order actually reached Innsbruck two days before the arrival of the party, who, as we must presume, accomplished their journey from Breslau to Augsburg, and from thence to Innsbruck, by very easy stages. The first despatch from the emperor was short, and was couched in somewhat mysterious terms, so that the bewildered privy councillors, exaggerating the importance of their commission, caused the most portentous precautions to be taken. Bodies of armed men were despatched in all directions to watch the different mountain-passes and high-roads leading into the country from the North. To the astonishment of the zealous statesmen, the princely party arrived two days later (October 3d), "quietly and properly mannered." They took rooms at the principal hostelry, swinging the signboard of the Golden Rose.[3]

[3] This inn, under the same name, is thriving to this day.

When their arrival became known, a privy council was immediately convoked, and the councillors, who had received that morning minute instructions from the emperor, sent to their noble visitors a deputation consisting of two of their number, Count Lodron and Count Sonnenburg. Their request for an interview was at first refused, on the plea that the illustrious travellers were at the time engaged in their devotions and very much fatigued by their journey. The lady-in-waiting, who in the absence of a chamberlain acted as spokesman, was then informed by the two counts that they came by the express order of His Majesty "to convey a certain message to the princess and her daughter."[4] Thereupon they were allowed to enter and present themselves to the princess-mother. "After humbly offering their congratulations on their safe arrival," the two councillors acquainted the princess-mother with the desire of the emperor that she and her daughter should take up their residence at Innsbruck. On receiving this startling news, "the princess seemed a bit frightened, and stood silent for a little time." Presently she replied that she was quite willing to comply with His Majesty's order, strange as it seemed to her, "for," said she, "our journey had for its sole object a visit to the holy shrine at Loretto, there to perform our prayers." Bowing humbly, the deputation assured her of their ignorance of the whole matter, whereupon the princess dismissed them. They had hardly reached the council-hall, where their ten comrades were awaiting them, as we may presume, full of eagerness and curious to hear how they had fared, when the gentleman-in-waiting of the princess overtook them and acquainted them with her wish to be allowed to inspect the imperial cabinet order. The councillors, "though in our character," said they to the emperor, "as representatives of your most exalted person, we were surely not obliged to produce our credentials," forthwith returned and complied with the princess's request. The minute résumé sent by them to the emperor, and from which we make these verbatim extracts, then says: "The inspection of the document seemed to satisfy the princess, especially when Your Majesty's humble servants pointed out to her the autograph signature of Your exalted Majesty."

[4] We must mention that from this point in the story we make use of the copious material contained in the bundle of official documents recently discovered.

Upon a hint of the princess the two councillors placed at her service the court courier; and we hear that this personage left for Vienna that same night as the bearer of two letters from the princess—one to her sister, mother of Charles VI., the other to the emperor himself—as well as of a minute protocol in which the privy councillors detailed the occurrences of this eventful day.

The Pretender, it seems, must have awaited the party from Ohlau near the Austrian-Italian frontier, for on the 9th of October, six days after their arrival at Innsbruck, a Scotch nobleman appears on the scene. According to the declaration of the postmaster-general of Tyrol, Count Taxis, this gentleman had travelled with the greatest despatch the night through from Trent to Innsbruck. At Innsbruck he seems suddenly to have lost the desire to continue his journey, for after stopping two days in the town, during which time he was seen conversing with a person in the suite of Princess Sobiesky, he was about to start for Italy, whence he had come, when the privy councillors, whose suspicion had been aroused by his strange conduct, had him arrested and brought before them. On being asked for his passport, he maintained that he had none, and declared himself "to be a Scotch nobleman, his name Robert Seiberg [sic], thirty-six years of age, and travelling for his amusement." When pressed to give further information, he told them that he had been on the Continent for the last two years, that he had been travelling in France and Italy, and that he was on his way to Vienna when he accidentally met a friend and countryman of his named La Haye, who was travelling in the suite of Princess Sobiesky. More pressure being brought to bear upon him, he produced a passport which he said he had received from the Irish Capuchin monks at Prague, and which bore the name of Count John Wirmann. He was then asked if he possessed any letters or documents bearing upon the Pretender or the Sobiesky family. He declined to answer this question; and when force was threatened he requested a private interview with the president of the council. To him he ultimately acknowledged that "he was a servant of King James of England." He was then asked to produce the letters and documents in his possession. Amongst them was found a letter in English, but without address, heading or signature. It was a communication from the Princess Clementina to her affianced, and in it she informed him of the misfortune that had befallen them, and warned him not to entrust any letters to couriers or messengers. She told him that her mother had written to her sister and to the emperor, but that she feared their efforts would be in vain. The closing sentence of the letter is: "We receive much honor and politeness. Adieu."

This letter, with the rest of the papers found upon Fremont,[5] was sent to the emperor, and the bearer himself was taken to a second-class hostelry. Here he was closely watched, and although he had given his word of honor not to escape, he was not allowed even to go out alone.

[5] We learn from a letter from that nobleman to a friend in Paris, which is amongst the papers in the imperial archives at Vienna, that this was his real name.

To the mortification of the privy council, the emperor discountenanced their rigorous proceeding, for the next courier from Vienna brought an imperial order commanding them to set the "Stuart messenger" at liberty, and forthwith to provide suitable lodgings in a private house, as befitted their rank, for the two illustrious ladies and their suite. The emperor had at first intended to place the imperial palace at their disposal, but he subsequently ordered "that a more respectable private house in or out of the town" should be prepared for the ladies, adding "that he did not wish the noble ladies to know that this was done by his order, but rather that it should seem an act of politeness on the part of the privy council."

Baron Greiffen, a member of that body, seems to have been the only one that took the hint to heart; for we find that the two princesses and their suite removed their domicil to the "palatial building"—in reality a quiet and by no means very magnificent house—of which the above-named nobleman was owner. The princely party entered upon their new residence, which was situated in the new town just outside the town-walls, on the 23d and 24th of October. Trained servants were now added to the princely household by the cautious privy councillors. Amongst these, however, as we see by the minutes sent to the emperor, were a couple of "trusty personages"—in other words, court spies. A handsome offering of choice game, fish and wine, the usual form of paying homage to distinguished guests, was presented to the princesses.

While the princesses are installing themselves in their new prison, we will turn for a moment to the Pretender, who had arrived on the 8th of October at Bologna, where he was to await the coming of the princess and her daughter. For seven days he remained without news, a prey to anxiety. On the 15th of October he received the first intimation of the fate that had befallen his bride, and the very next day he despatched two letters to the mother and daughter at Innsbruck.[6] From the answer to these missives we learn that the princesses had by no means given up the project of effecting their flight to Italy. The long, dreary winter evenings and the absence of all society in dull Innsbruck left them full time and opportunity to plan the best means of escape; and though they were surrounded by watchful spies and guarded by a morbidly cautious government, they yet found ways and means to communicate two or three times with their friends in the North and the South. Strange to say, the councillors themselves afforded them on one occasion the means of intercourse with the Pretender. Under the pretence that bills of exchange were awaiting her at Venice, Princess Sobiesky obtained permission to send her gentleman-in-waiting, La Haye, to the latter town to arrange "these necessary money-matters."

[6] These letters must have fallen into the hands of the councillors, for we find that exact copies of them, together with a copy of Princess Clementina's answer, were sent to the emperor, and are still preserved in the private imperial court archives at Vienna.

After the departure of the princess from Ohlau the English government concentrated its attention upon the unfortunate father of the bride, for it was obvious that as long as the head of the family continued to advocate the marriage, all efforts to dissolve the betrothal would prove abortive. He was therefore made the object of countless intrigues on the part of England's staunch ally the emperor. A special commissioner, Count Praschma, then governor of Silesia, was sent by the imperial court to Ohlau. On the 14th of October he met Prince Sobiesky, but, though the interview lasted from three o'clock in the afternoon till a late hour of the night, the count did not succeed in bringing Sobiesky to more reasonable views. Sobiesky refused to give him then and there a definite answer, and begged him to come again the next day. "The matter," he said, "was of too vital importance for him to give a decisive answer that day." The result of the next day's interview was that Count Praschma set down in writing, at the prince's dictation, two separate minutes—the one addressed to the emperor personally, the other also nominally addressed to him, but specially prepared for the scrutiny of the English ambassador at Vienna. Did we not know that the courier who left for Vienna the same evening with these two documents was also the bearer of a third, a private letter from Praschma to the emperor, we should naturally wonder at the count's willingness to comply with this whim of Sobiesky—a proceeding which would have been fraught with some danger for the imperial commissioner. These documents are not without interest, for they give us a picture of the political intrigues forming such unstable links between the courts of St. James and Vienna. The limited space of this paper, however, compels us to confine ourselves to a brief résumé of their contents. In the first, addressed to the emperor personally, Prince Sobiesky lays great stress upon "the certainty that the marriage with the Pretender would prove to be a source of great political advantage to Austria"—an argument which, we must confess, was well adapted to find favor in the eyes of Charles VI., the last male descendant of a house in the history of which marriage had played such a momentous rôle. He pointed out to the emperor that "His British Majesty" would find in the annulment of the betrothal no help in suppressing rebellion in his kingdom; and, moreover, that it would be quite impossible for the king by any means to prevent the Pretender's marrying. "It is well known," he goes on to say, "that the English"—meaning the rebels—"wait only for the marriage of the Pretender, and not for an alliance with a foreign power." He begs his imperial kinsman not to shut his eyes to the obvious precariousness of King George's tenure of the throne, nor to the well-known fact that dire necessity alone had impelled the king to come to his aid by sending the English fleet to Naples. The emperor is warned that the king of England would assuredly break off his alliance with him the moment he had no longer cause to dread the Pretender; and he is reminded that while the former was at best a cold and crafty ally, he would find the prince a staunch and powerful confederate. "It is therefore," he continues, "for Your Majesty's interest to bring about a marriage, and not to allow the royal house of Stuart to become extinct. And even, taking the worst for granted, if the Pretender did not succeed in realizing his pretensions to the British throne, it would be only fair on the part of Your Majesty to remind King George that the marriage would detract nothing from, and have no influence whatever upon, the alliance between him and Your Majesty." Sobiesky closes his letter by assuring the emperor how deeply he regretted his displeasure, and by declaring that he had acted in good faith to the emperor; "for," said he, "I would never have advocated this match without the consent of Your Majesty had I not received the written assurance of Her Majesty the empress Eleonora (the emperor's mother) that she had spoken to Your Majesty on this matter. To me this was sufficient; for, considering the course of European politics, I dared not hope to receive open signs of Your Majesty's approbation."

Count Praschma remarks, in his private report to the emperor, that he believes "Prince Sobiesky places great reliance on the assistance proffered by the Roman Curia, on the good-will displayed by the regent of France, no less than on the guarantee ensured to him by Sweden and Prussia, and on the concurrence of Russia."

In the second document Prince Sobiesky displays far more energy and spirit in resisting the overbearing demands of King George, whom he persistently styles throughout the whole of this second paper "elector of Hanover." He not only condemns the king's intrigues as perfidious, but also asserts with much emphasis that the marriage between his daughter and the Pretender had been consummated and stood irrevocable. He trusts that His Majesty will decline to uphold any further these grossly unjust concessions which the elector and his government had dared to exact of a monarch who was famed for his justice and benignity. He humbly reminds the emperor, his exalted kinsman, that the great services which his (Sobiesky's) father had rendered to Christendom deserved worthier recognition than the open persecution to which he and his family were then subjected. He declares with some asperity that the elector of Hanover has no right whatever over his person, and that he, an independent prince, reserves to himself the power to dispose of his own flesh and blood. The threats of England would never frighten him into submission, especially as he is sure of the aid of several potentates—a circumstance which ensures to him the safety of his estates in Poland and France. "The marriage," says he, "is not opposed to the interest of Your Majesty in respect to your alliance with the elector, for the union does not enrich the Pretender either in money or in land. And were it possible that the marriage could be still prevented, the Pretender would assuredly turn to some more powerful court, able to supply him not only with a wife, but also with ample funds and troops." Sobiesky closed his missive with the request to His Majesty to take back the investiture of Ohlau, "a place which had become unbearable to him through the ignominious treatment to which he was constantly exposed, no less than by the endless trouble and pecuniary losses which the management of that imperial estate entailed upon him." He was desirous of removing to some distant and secluded spot, far away from Poland, where he could end his days in peace.

These two important missives were followed a few days later (17th and 19th of October) by two more letters from the prince to Chancellor Count Zinzendorf at Vienna. Of their contents—which are generally a repetition of the arguments contained in the first two—we need not speak, except in reference to one point, which was evidently the result of an after-thought that had rushed through the bewildered prince's head. The reader will have observed that Sobiesky, while using the name of almost every potentate of Europe to strengthen his arguments, omits to mention the Pope, the staunchest and most powerful partisan he had. This omission he seeks to repair in his letters to Zinzendorf, in which he endeavors to persuade the emperor that the marriage ceremony had really been performed, though only by proxy, and that hence it was a matrimonium ratum, which, according to the canon law, could not be dissolved without drawing upon the parties concerned in the act the just wrath of the pontiff and of every good Catholic.

These four letters, but chiefly the first two, had evidently some effect in making the emperor waver. This appears from one of the most striking sentences in a letter from the imperial court to Monsieur de Peutenrieder, imperial ambassador at the court of St. James, which runs as follows: "In the mean while I beg you to remember that we are very desirous of extricating ourselves from this dilemma honesto et licito modo. We were, and are still, quite willing and prepared to do everything in this delicate affair according to the wishes of the king, to convince him of our love and friendship.... The emperor wishes you to convince the king, as politely and delicately as possible, that we fear our measures in this marriage affair will prove abortive."

Politicians in England, less scrupulous than their confrères on the Continent, persisted in their demand that no concessions should be made to Prince Sobiesky until the betrothal, the work of Alberoni and the Roman Curia, was formally dissolved. In a formal protest which the English ambassador at the imperial court handed in (9th of December) stress is laid upon the fact that Prince Sobiesky was not an independent prince, but rather a subject of the emperor, and that hence his conduct, culpable in the extreme, deserved to be visited by the emperor with severity. It was alleged to be ridiculous that he held out against the express wish of the allies, well knowing how easy it would be for the king of England to ruin him entirely. Even Venice, whither it was said Prince Sobiesky wished to retire, would not receive him for fear of annoying England. The duke of Modena, prompted by sincere consideration for England, had broken off his engagement with the eldest daughter of Prince Sobiesky, and it was very probable that the duke of Guastalla would follow this example.

We should tire the reader were we to repeat all the arguments employed by statesmen in defence of the English policy. Untenable as most of them were, they sufficed to dispel such slight qualms of conscience as had arisen in Charles's mind. England's powerful fleet and beef-fed troops were then far more important to Charles than the empty thanks of a thriftless princeling.

While the father was thus being made the centre of political intrigues, the lives of his wife and daughter, on whose account the courts of Europe had been thrown into a state of commotion, flowed on in the same dull routine which had marked them from the very beginning. Four long months were thus spent, and the rigorous winter of Tyrol was at its height, when the guardians of the princesses, the worthy privy councillors, were suddenly startled from their lethargic repose by the news that the friends of their noble prisoners in the North and the South were on the move. On the 11th of February, 1719, it became known in Vienna that Prince Sobiesky had mysteriously left Ohlau, and that it was supposed he had repaired to Augsburg. Ten days later the governor of Mantua (then part of the empire) reported that the Pretender had turned his back on Rome on the 8th of February, and had posted to Florence. These two highly suspicious movements convinced the emperor that the Sobiesky party was bent upon rescuing Princess Clementina. Strict injunctions were therefore despatched to Innsbruck, enforcing redoubled precautions against a surprise, while the governors of Mantua and Trent were at the same time commanded to keep a watchful eye on all travellers that passed through those towns, and were supplied with minute instructions for their conduct should the Pretender visit either of them. Force was not to be used in ejecting the person of the Pretender, but he was to be told quite politely "that the emperor had given strict orders not to allow him to proceed on his journey toward Innsbruck, and that hence his further stay in the town was useless."

Politely as this imperial decree was framed, the Pretender did not give the authorities occasion to make use of it, for his journey had Spain, and not Innsbruck, for its goal. Ignorant of this circumstance, government continued to maintain its cautious attitude. A staff officer and a body of men were under a plausible pretext quartered in the house adjoining the Sobiesky palace, and the two spies in the retinue of the Princess Clementina were ordered "to make it a point to catch sight of her at least once in every twenty-four hours." The privy councillors, indeed, deemed all these precautions superfluous, for they placed full reliance on the barrier, seemingly insurmountable by a delicate young woman, with which Nature had surrounded the prisoner in the shape of a severe winter blocking up all the Alpine passes leading to the South; and they now reported to the emperor that they had done everything in their power to make escape or rescue impossible.

Nothing of importance occurred for the next two months, save that the princess-mother wrote to the emperor, and informed the Innsbruck government that she desired to return to Ohlau—a request which the emperor immediately granted, little thinking it to be a mere ruse on the part of the ladies to lull their watchful guardians.

The night of the 27th of April was at last to witness the triumph of the artful prisoners over their vigilant jailers.

In the afternoon of that day Princess Clementina drove, as usual, to the church of the Franciscans (well known to all tourists for its celebrated monument to Maximilian I.), there to perform her devotions. From thence she drove home. It was the last time the sedate burghers of Innsbruck set eyes upon her. Mother and daughter passed the evening in the usual manner, as the spies witnessed with their own eyes. At eleven o'clock the servants retired, and none of them had observed, as they deposed upon their oath, anything in the least suspicious, save that Monsieur de Châteaudoux was seen under the gate by the scullery-maid half an hour later.

On the following morning the servants were told that Princess Clementina was ill, and that they must keep as quiet as possible in order that her fitful slumbers might not be disturbed. No suspicion was aroused by this incident for two whole days. The escape had taken place on Thursday night, and not till late in the evening of Saturday did the head-steward of the Sobiesky household, one of the court spies, think proper to inform one of the privy councillors of the fact that the young princess had remained invisible, shut up in her room, since Friday morning. The suspicions of the privy councillor were aroused, and notwithstanding the late hour a council was immediately convoked to deliberate on the best means of convincing themselves by actual inspection of the presence of their prisoner. It was decided that the doctor who had been in the habit of attending the Sobiesky family should be sent early the next morning to see her in person. The physician, on presenting himself to the lady-in-waiting, was politely informed that "he was only to come when called." Not a little startled, for hitherto he had had free access to the princess's room, he forthwith informed the privy councillors, who were spending their Sunday forenoon in debate, of the result of his visit. Upon hearing the physician's tale, they despatched Baron Greiffen, the owner of the house in which the Sobiesky family lived, to insist upon an interview with Princess Clementina, and thus pacify their minds. The lady-in-waiting vainly endeavored to rid herself of the inopportune visitor by pleading for her sick mistress; and when, finally, Baron Greiffen assumed a sterner tone, she pertly asked him, "And what if the princess has really given you the slip?" These words amounted, of course, to an open confession of the deplorable fact. No doubt they grated very harshly on the ears of the hapless councillors, whose commission now obliged the baron to break the news of the prisoner's escape to his confrères, who were anxiously awaiting his return in the Diet Hall.

We will not pry into the feelings of utter consternation and abject bewilderment which took possession of that solemn-faced company when they heard that their charge had so ignominiously duped them. These feelings are dimly reflected in the pile of long-winded minutes which followed each other in quick succession, and in which the councillors vainly endeavored to appease the wrath of their monarch.

Charles, on hearing of Princess Clementina's escape, is said to have burst out in a fit of laughter, which, however, soon gave way to a storm of rage. On this occasion, it is likewise reported, he made the only pun that ever passed his lips.

But to return to the twelve hapless councillors, whom we left staring blankly at each other in the Innsbruck Diet Hall. Two of their number—the very same who had had the honor of receiving the princess on her arrival in the town—were sent off to seek an interview with her mother. "They found her," as they state in one of the minutes, "bathed in tears, but quite willing and prepared to give them all the information she could respecting the mysterious and most deplorable flight of her daughter, of which, so she assured us, she had known absolutely nothing." Her words, confirmed by her tears, at first found ready credence with her gullible visitors. Later on they asked themselves, "If she really did not know anything of the flight, why did she not inform us at once?" and some revulsion in their feelings accordingly took place.

The princess-mother then handed to the deputies a letter which "she had found on her daughter's dressing-table on the morning of her flight." In this letter, the original of which is before us, Princess Clementina informs her mother, whom she addresses as "Your Royal Highness," that the day before she had received two letters—one from her father, and the other from her husband the king, in which they both begged her to entrust herself to the care of certain persons who would be sent to take her away as speedily as possible. High-flown passages, breathing the deepest regret for the step she is about to take without her mother's knowledge and consent, intermingled with quite unnatural expressions of humiliation before the august personage of "Madame, my dear mother, Your Royal Highness," make up the rest of this capital sham.

From the depositions of the various witnesses examined by the councillors it is easy to fit together the details of this remarkable escape—details which, as we have hinted in the beginning of this paper, differ on important points from the scanty notices on the subject which French and English historians have given us.

Sir Walter Scott, in his Tales of a Grandfather, gives us correctly the names at least of the persons who were immediately concerned in the abduction. Prominent among these persons was Charles Wogan, one of the prisoners of Preston, and one of the most devoted partisans of the Stuarts. It was he who devised the plan, and to whom the princess had been instructed by her father, in a letter which lies before us, to entrust herself. Major Misset, his wife, and Captain Toole, with two attendants, and finally the maid-servant of Mrs. Misset, who was to take the place of Princess Clementina, made up the rest of the company. These persons were divided into two distinct parties—the first consisting of three gentlemen, Wogan, Misset and Toole, and "two ladies," Mrs. Misset's maid being ranked with her mistress; and the second of Captain Toole's two attendants. It is unnecessary to speak of these again, for, as far as we can see, their aid was not called into requisition. Wogan's party travelled from Augsburg viâ Füssen and Reusse to Innsbruck, at that time the usual route to Italy from South Germany. To enable them to make frequent stoppages without arousing suspicion, "one of the ladies" (Mrs. Misset's maid) was reported to be enceinte. They stopped twenty-four hours at Nassereit, a post-station near the Bavarian frontier and a few hours' journey from Innsbruck, assigning as the reason for this strange proceeding the "precarious condition of the lady," who, as the postboy declared, was beautifully dressed and wore a red cloak, but kept her features hidden under a thick veil. In reality, they awaited at Nassereit the final orders of Châteaudoux. These were brought by his servant the morning after their arrival. The party set out in the afternoon, and after short stoppages at the intermediate post-stations arrived at Innsbruck at half-past 9 P.M. (27th of April). They drove to a second-class hostelry outside the town, whither one of the gentlemen (in all probability Captain Toole) had preceded them, ordering a comfortable room to be immediately heated. The Kellnerin (barmaid)—there were no waiters—seems to have had eyes for the gentlemen only, for while she deposed that the latter were "young, handsome and very well dressed," she could give very little information as to the appearance of the two ladies. In fact, all she remembered was that the smaller one had a black veil. Wogan, the smallest and stoutest of the three gentlemen, wore a handsome white coat, and nether garments to match, while his head was adorned with an aristocratic perruque. Captain Toole was, according to her account, a tall and very handsome man, clothed in light garments. On being shown into the apartment, the lady with the black veil threw herself upon the bed, while the other sat down near the table with the gentlemen. Supper was ordered and brought up. The so-called Herrenmahl or "gentlemen's meal," consisted of barley soup, roast meat, veal ragoût and salad, washed down by two mass or four bottles of wine. On the police-sheet, which was presented to them before they retired, they inscribed themselves as "Monsieur de Cernes, avec son épouse et famille, de Flandre, en voyage pour Loretto."

We have selected these few extracts from the enormous mass of evidence collected by the distracted councillors in order to give the reader some little idea of the consternation excited by this daring and well-planned escapade.

When the party had finished their repast the second lady joined her companion on the bed, while the "two" gentlemen—the third being evidently on the watch—left the room to take a stroll under the arched gateway of the house. Here the postilion, on coming to receive his orders, met them. He was told by the smaller of the two (that is, Wogan) that they would leave punctually at two o'clock that same night. This was, properly speaking, against the town laws, but the postilion, who had been told that they would proceed on their journey that night, had provided for the emergency by seeking the necessary permission from the postmaster-general, Count Taxis. This he had received in the shape of a message brought down by the lady's maid of the countess, "that he might drive on whenever he liked."

The most important part of the whole undertaking yet remained to be performed. This was the abduction of Princess Clementina from her house, situated in quite another part of the town, and conducting her through the streets to the hostelry. We have seen that on the night in question the servants of the Sobiesky household had retired at eleven o'clock, and that Monsieur Châteaudoux was seen loitering about the gate half an hour later, evidently for the purpose of choosing a propitious moment to let the princess out of the house. By one o'clock the princess was already in the hostelry. She had donned the same attire as the three gentlemen who accompanied her wore—viz., a long white cloak and a broad hat. The distance between the two houses was considerable; and, what was worse, the party had to pass the only bridge that led across the Inn, the hostelry being situated on the other side of the river. While they were groping their way through the crazy lanes and winding streets of the town an incident occurred which came near exemplifying the old adage about the cup and the lip. The party were placed for a quarter of an hour or thereabouts in the most imminent risk of detection. The minutes which proved such pleasant reading for the emperor contain such ample information, paraded in the most pompous style, of this most ludicrous adventure, that we do not hesitate to give the reader a short extract. We must premise that the night was extremely dark, and a violent storm of sleet and snow was raging at the time. This, however, did not prevent the Rumormeister—or, as we might translate the word, the "riotmaster," whose duties were those of a police sergeant and night watchman—from being out on patrol, accompanied by several trusty men, on the lookout, not for robbers and thieves, but for students. It seems that the frequenters of the Innsbruck University gave great and constant trouble to this most important of town functionaries. By all that we hear of their mad excesses and their riotous conduct, we can conclude that "Gown versus Town" was a constant war-cry in those dark days of Innsbruck. The "riotmaster"—evidently a most conscientious personage, judging from his conduct on that auspicious night—was of course constantly the object of the students' spite and revenge. To quote the words of this much-exposed individual, we find "that he completed his first round that night by ten o'clock. He had met some students, but they did not commence any riot or fight. At twelve o'clock, while on his second round, he was approaching the meat-booths"—a row of stalls of which some time previously the students had made a clean sweep—"when by the light of his lantern he and his men perceived some persons standing about. As the thought struck him that these might be students, he firmly advanced with the intention of catching the evil-doers and giving them a sound thrashing." On getting quite close to the booths he and his men heard a "subtile woman's voice." At this moment three figures issued from the gloom, while a fourth followed them at a little distance, and passing by him they turned the corner of the street leading to the Inn bridge. Our confidence in the courage of the riotmaster is rudely shaken by his next remark: "I called out Good-night! but they did not answer me; and after vainly searching behind the booths for the female whose voice we had heard, but whom we did not perceive among the four persons that left, we proceeded with due caution to follow these suspicious personages." When they reached the bridge, the butcher's man, leading three oxen and carrying a lantern, met them, and him the riotmaster asked if he had not seen four students on the bridge. Upon receiving a negative reply, the whole matter seemed more suspicious than ever, and he was just ordering his men to search below the bridge, where the students might have secreted themselves, when the butcher himself came up and told him he had met four persons on the other side of the bridge. "Thereupon," says the report, "we returned to our quarters, confident that they were only French people"—meaning outlandish or foreign folk.

But to return from this ludicrous interlude, the details of which the privy councillors narrate with the most self-assured satisfaction as evidence of the active zeal of their town functionary. The party on reaching the inn divided itself, the three gentlemen ascending the stairs, while the Princess Clementina hid herself in the carriage. Our friend the Kellnerin was still up, and met the gentlemen on the landing, "whereupon they seemed annoyed, and told me I might go to bed, for they did not require me any more." The girl once away in her bedroom, it was easy enough to bring the princess up stairs unobserved. Although we can without difficulty follow the whole undertaking from step to step, there is one point which the documents before us fail to clear up—when and where Mrs. Misset's maid took the place of the princess, and what became of her afterward.

It seems to us that Wogan exaggerated the difficulties of the scheme, or at least omitted to take into account the astounding stupidity of the Kellnerin, and in fact of everybody with whom the party came in contact. For all that the Kellnerin observed, they might have dispensed with the "sick lady" altogether, and yet have driven away from the house with two princesses instead of one. Of such an extraordinarily unsophisticated nature was this simple handmaiden that, when helping the sick lady down stairs to the carriage, she noticed that the skirt of her dress was wet, and that the dress itself was of brown taffeta, similar to the one the princess generally wore (proving thereby that she had frequently seen the princess). Nevertheless, no suspicion crossed her mind, though she knew that the party had arrived in a closed carriage, and that the ladies had not gone out.

Punctually at two o'clock the party drove off, the two ladies and two of the gentlemen inside, the third on horseback acting as outrider. At the very first station after Innsbruck, Schönberg on the Brenner road, some delay occurred, for the great depth of snow obliged them to add two more horses to the four they already had, and the whole house had to be roused. Nothing of importance seems to have occurred in crossing the high Brenner Pass, although the huge masses of snow on the slopes of the mountains threatened every minute to bury the travellers. At Trent they received the second check, which, from the results that seemed at first inevitable, was far more serious than that at Schönberg. That very morning the margravine of Baden had passed through Trent, and her numerous carriages had required every one of the post-horses stabled in the town. The postmaster, Count Wolkenstein, the very man whom the privy councillors had warned some months previously to keep a sharp lookout on all travellers, helped them out of the scrape by providing private horses—a matter of some difficulty.

On Saturday night (29th of April) at ten o'clock, Princess Clementina had reached Venetian territory at Peri, and was saved. This was half an hour before the privy councillors at Innsbruck had received the first intimation of her absence. The grand reward of liberty, we presume, fully compensated the youthful princess for the fatigues and absorbing excitement of the preceding eight and forty hours. Little as we may sympathize with the cause for which this brave little party were fighting, we cannot deny them the praise that in the face of the difficulties which stood in their way, much as they may have been lightened by the inordinate slowness of mind in general at Innsbruck, the undertaking was a decidedly plucky one and deserved the successful issue it had.

Princess Clementina's gentleman-in-waiting, the oft-mentioned Châteaudoux, fared less happily in his attempt to follow his mistress. The day after the princess's flight from Innsbruck, and before the slightest suspicion had been aroused in the minds of the privy councillors, Châteaudoux, having in due form received permission to undertake a journey to Italy on business matters, as on a former occasion, left Innsbruck. He had delayed his departure too long, however, for though he had a clear start of nearly twenty-four hours, the lieutenant who commanded the pursuit of the princess overtook him close to the frontier and led him back to Roveredo, where he remained eighty-five days in confinement. The important papers and his mistress's jewels were taken from him and sent to Innsbruck, whence the papers wandered by the usual route to the emperor: the jewels, however, were handed to the princess-mother.

From Peri the fugitives hastened to Bologna, where, as we know, the marriage ceremony was solemnized by proxy,[7] Lord Dunbar being the Pretender's representative. From Bologna the princess proceeded to Rome, where a royal reception was given her at the hands of the highest dignitaries of Church and State. A medal well known to numismatists commemorates the incident of the flight. On the obverse we see Princess Clementina's bust and the inscription "Clementina, Queen of Great Britain, France, Scotland and Ireland:" the reverse represents her riding in a car drawn by a spirited team and guided by Amor, the god of love, as coachman. The words, "I follow fortune and the good cause," and below, "To Deluded Guardians, 1719," surround this novel design, which reminds us somewhat of the incidents peculiar to a Gretna-Green runaway match.

[7] The marriage was consummated on the 1st of September at Monte Fiascone.

At Rome, where the Pretender and his wife took up their permanent residence, and where they were treated as became their rank of titular king and queen of England, that gifted but foolish adventurer, Baron Pöllnitz, frequently met them. The description which he gives in his Mémoires of Princess Clementina's person and appearance is worth quoting. "The queen," so he styles her, "is a princess who really deserves to be a queen. Without being a beauty of the first rank, she combines in her person resistless charms. She has a sterling character, and never did one find greater humility and tender-heartedness. She is obliging, compassionate and charitable: her piety is sincere, and her life is that of a saint.... Did she possess a kingdom, she would assuredly make it her first aim to discharge conscientiously her queenly duties. Nature has bestowed upon her those gifts that would ensure her success. She has remarkable powers of comprehension and a truly wonderful memory. She speaks the Polish, German, French, Italian and English tongues so perfectly as to leave it an open question which of these is her mother-language. Of all royal personages with whom I have had the honor of coming into contact, she is the most worthy of general veneration, and I would wish to see her happy."

Unfortunately, Fate bereft this unhappy princess of the chance of proving the truth of the old adage about fools speaking the truth.[8]

W.A. Baillie-Grohman.

[8] Pöllnitz was at one time court-jester to Frederick II. of Prussia.




It was Aunt Fanny Brown who caused the duel between Captain Mason and Bob Nettles. Aunt Fanny was a high-nosed, aristocratic dowager, of a pretty taste in old china, who put her wig in curl papers and came down to breakfast in the roseate bloom of sixty summers, as if defying perfidy to call it paint. A Washington, New Orleans and Louisville belle, she had received from her husband five hundred acres of blue-grass land and the finest racing stables in that part of the State. To the surprise of all but the knowing, she conducted the business with admirable skill. Many a jockey has walked out of the pink boudoir before a crack race so completely dazed and pumped he did not dare to chaff even a stable-boy. The newsboy's stamp, the dissipated buck's allowance and the leakage of the shop-till all found a way to irrigate Aunt Fanny's fat blue-grass pastures and to keep glossy her satin-coated stock. Not that she soiled her aristocratic hands with such canaille, but she domineered the whole race of Brown, from Vandyke Brown the artist, who painted her stud, to little Yelloe Ochre and Burnett Umber of the stable-yard, poor but proud in the aristocracy of horse.

Aunt Fanny proposed to marry her nephew, Lind Mason—or Lindley Brown Mason, for the remotest relation took a color from the parent stock—to little Sue Brown, daughter of her nephew, Walter Brown, Esq., pork merchant. That was her object in the intriguing that led to the duel. Captain Mason was a man-about-town, with no wish to marry any one in particular, but anxious to raise the wind, to clear off his play debts and attend the match race between Kentucky and Asteroid, then much talked of in racing circles. His object, to use his own picturesque language, was "to put the saddle on the right horse."

Bob Nettles, the other party to the duel, was a sort of general clerk or factotum to Walter Brown. He was épris of little Sudie Brown, his employer's daughter, one of those merry little romps no one thinks of as a grown woman until she surprises society by marrying. Bob was a shy, modest little fellow, with scrubby poll, pug nose, stubby palms, like leather, from base ball, and with a habit of laughing in the nose, called sniggering. He had merry gray eyes and hair of a pure tow color, which I take to be the true plebeian tint, without a sanguine shade in it—just the last man you would think of as engaging in a duel. To tell how these various shades were woven into the carmine flower is the purpose of this sketch.

Bob would probably never have looked so high but for the bookkeeper at Brown, Ochre & Co.'s pork-house, Major Johnstone—nicknamed Toady Johnstone, because he could not help reflecting the air, tone, gestures and opinions of those he conversed with. But the major was of tried courage, and had a pistol wound from a duel in the thigh; and no one ever heard an ungentlemanly word from his lips. He had a store of singularly inept recollections in respect to such marriages, which had generally, turned out badly; but that was nothing. The major, like a novelist, believed he had done his whole duty in marrying a couple, and the deuce might take them after that.

Sue had not, at this time, shown any marked preference, though she liked Bob as a playmate, and had a sort of awe of her cousin Lind and his marvellous stories of adventures in the Lost Cause. It was her mother, who by no means approved of a match with the little plebeian, that first gave her daughter a hint of such pretensions.

It was the morning Sudie proposed that garden-party, and at Mrs. Brown's country-house. The view overlooked a jumble of village roofs very confusing to any conception of regular thoroughfares, and faced the meeting-house, in much disrepair, because the Masons and Methodists had agreed to put up a lodge and a church together, and had not yet put up something else necessary to such enterprise. The house had just been cleaned: fresh streaks of moisture dried off the porch and mixed with the fragrance of verbenas and the cool pungency of soot from the freshly-cleaned chimneys. The bees droned under the pear trees; the redbirds sang in the cedars; even the black cook, scouring her tins in the kitchen, caught the infection and shouted jubilant doxologies at the top of her voice. Sudie swung in a hammock on the porch. Mrs. Brown read the Woman in White, and held a feather-duster over the colored girl red-painting the pavements, as if it were a wand. Then Sue proposed that garden-party that made all the mischief.

"But the house just cleaned, and all the carpets to take up!" murmured Mrs. Brown, pursuing the indomitable Miss Holcombe across the page like a flea.

"Oh no, mamma: we'll dance out here," said Sue. "This house was just built for fun. It's so"—pouncing on the expressive word—"jolly!"

"Well, you must see your aunt," said Mrs. Brown, who dreaded the dowager.

"Why?" asked the little rebel. "She'll just say, 'There, child, don't trouble me with details;' and if I put in a lump of sugar or spike of cloves without telling her, she'll snub me before papa for extravagance. Besides, she'll say Bobby Nettles isn't aristocratic; and we can't have a garden-party without Bob."

"I don't understand the fuss you girls make over that little fellow," said Mrs. Brown. "Why, he is not as tall as you!"

"Yes he is, mamma," answered Sue, laughing at the recollection. "We measured, and Mr. Warrener bumped our heads and drove a hairpin clear into my wits. Bob hasn't any, but he's so accommodating."

"Your aunt won't like it," said Mrs. Brown with a peculiar stress on the pronoun.

Sue blushed to the roots of her hair and looked a little startled: "La, mamma! I didn't mean that: I don't think of him that way. Little Bob Nettles! Why, mamma!" For all that, little Sue kept laughing to herself and blushing, as if there was something not altogether unpleasant in the thought.

Mr. Brown pooh-poohed the necessity of consulting his aunt about his home hospitalities, but thought it only courtesy to inform her of what was contemplated. This he undertook to do, and failed. It was the first offence.

His factotum, Bob, was to have the conduct of the preliminaries, for those were idle days at the pork-house. The great vats were dry, the pens vacant, Parker's patent fingers for lifting swine reached out beggarly hands for alms. At any hour of the forenoon you could see the rows of porkmen sitting on chairs atilt on the flags. Take a retail grocer, water him well, he buds into a forwarding and commission merchant, flowers a transportation agent, and matures a great pork merchant. Why? I don't know. No more do I know why a livery-stable-keeper always develops into a candidate for sheriff. It is a mystery, a branch of the great Darwinian theory. At eleven o'clock they stop talking steamboat, the chairs come down with a crack, and the stately figures—all Kentucky pork-dealers are large, fine-looking men—troop into the beer-saloon to drink lager and eat pretzels. Bob does not go—he knows Mr. Brown does not want a beer-drinker to overlook his transactions in pork—nor does the major, who objects to beer as slops, and says it is hard on the coats of the stomach. The major has a theory on the coats of the stomach he has never been able to propound, from his agreeable facility in coinciding with any one who questions it. They remain outside to inhale the fragrance of oak shavings in the cooper-shop opposite, and to watch Beargrass glass itself under the old stone bridge like a great green eye and lid.

As Walter Brown, Esq., passes out he stops by Bob's chair: "Here, Nettles, I have to meet the Board of Trade at twelve. Would you see to these commissions for Puss?" Would he? Bob enters the street-car with the others. Mr. Brown adds: "Oh, I promised Sue to let her aunt Fanny know. Would you mind—?"

"Hm-m!" hesitates Bob. "Old lady's rather uppish—got the scrinctum scranctums 'bout me, somehow: my nose is too short. Beg pardon, but she don't like me."

"Confounded old jockey!" ejaculates the irreverent Brown at the inconvenience; and Redmond Ochre, Esq., thinks such language in a prospective legatee should be reported; and it is, and Aunt Fanny rages.

These offences, however, were mere preliminaries to that which the unlucky Nettles was destined to give, and which was the true origin of that duel and its results.

He arrived at Mrs. Brown's in the afternoon in a grocer's van.

"La! if it isn't Bob!" screamed Sudie, rushing out, very fresh and rumpled.—"Why, what have you got there?"

"Goodies," said Bob, "and things marked 'L'eau'—'riginal packages. Shut your eyes and open your mouth when the vane o' the church is blowing south. Ain't it hunkidory?"

"My precious papa!" screamed Sudie. "Come right in here.—Mamma, here's Mr. Nettles," offering him like a saucer of cream.—"Just wait till I get my bonnet—where is my bonnet?—and we'll run right down to Mrs. Dinwiddie's and get Vixie and Cordie to help."

The two went giggling and romping down the lawn, more like two hoydens than boy and girl, and pretty soon returned with two others. It would be hard to tell what help Sue wanted, unless it was to laugh, though she did that very well, for Bob did the entertaining. They played "Old Maid," and they put the odd queen on Bob with as frank cheating as if they were the three knaves in the pack. Then they blacked Bob's comical face with soot, and in this costume he mimicked everybody, even the great dragon, Aunt Fanny, being put up to it by her nephew; whereat Mrs. Brown looked grave, while Mr. Brown roared like a great bull alligator.

How did Bob Nettles entertain that family? He was not witty; he could not tell a story without missing the point; he was a poor buffoon; he did not know a pun from a problem; and his voice in singing was hee-haw and screech. Yet he did entertain them better than noted humorists would have done. O thou immaculate and pure spirit of Fun! fathered in no classic fable, brought to sweetness by no toil of thought, thou art indeed the lowliest and sweetest of thy kind. Growing like the wild fruits and berries that the humblest may partake of thy bounty and be filled, thy nutriment is in a quick and cheerful spirit, and thy abundance in the broadest sympathies of our common nature.

But this childish mummery did the mischief, carried as it was by the common vehicle of scandal in the South.

Dame Brown had two maids—Ma'amselle Hortense, who enamelled that fine old face and retired to her crucifix and French novels; and Memmie, the mulatto, elderly, with a complexion like a soiled and creased straw-colored kid glove, light-blue eyes, and a prim, affected laugh like the crackle of letter paper.

The morning after Bob's mimicry the latter went about muttering, as her kind do, to attract attention.

"What is it, Memmie?" asked the dowager, carelessly closing and relaxing her upper lip before a hand-mirror to adjust her false teeth. "Have you and Hortense quarrelled again?"

"Te-hee," crackled the negress. "Missis sich sweet dispisition me 'n' Miss Ho'tense 'bleege to be frien's. If ma'amselle hain't got the true spirit of the Methodies, hallelujah! amen! She ain't none o' them Nettleses pesterin' roun', a-blackin' of his face fo' tu 'ten' like of it's a-missus's beyoucheeful enamuel; and Mistah Waltah a-laughin' of hoss-laughs, a-sayin' it's the very spit o' ole Miss Fanny.—Whar ye been wid dat choc'lit all dis time missis a-waitin'?" breaking out on the under-servant with the breakfast tray. "Some'hin' hap'n top o' yo' head, gal: yo' mammy'll have to git ye peg t' hang yo' hat on. Yo's wuss'n Nettles, niggah as ye is."

Dame Brown's first thought was of a lettre de cachet: she would have chopped off Bob's head without the slightest compunction. Her next was to reduce the rebellious province of Walter Brown and occupy its fairest possession, Sudie, much given to upset the tea-caddy upon occasion.

The General Gage she proposed for this expedition was her nephew. Captain Mason was one of those elegant do-nothings whom statisticians grub out and sentimentalists wail over, as if I were to shed a few ink-drops because the morning-glory at my porch will not make an edible potato of its root, like its first cousin the yam in the near field. He was portly, rosy in the jowls, with fat blue eyes of a tendency to get bloodshot in the corners, and curly brown hair. He wore sumptuous waistcoats, lawn fronts, much irrigation of vest-chain and jewels, like her of Banbury Cross; after which it is superfluous to add skill in billiards and games of chance. He affected a pompous sort of military horse-talk, as if the steed in the book of Job neighed through his conversation. Sudie Brown thought him just awful, and was quite sure he had chopped off heads with that ostentatious sabre he kept on view. But waggish Confederates had a way of playing on the captain's foible by such remarks as "I say, Lind, how about the four Dutchmen you scalped at Perryville?" and there would be good entertainment for an hour, or indeed as long as one chose to listen. If it was absurd to think of that merry little prig Nettles in such a business, Captain Mason's old companions-in-arms at the mere suggestion of his being brought to face a loaded pistol burst into great guffaws of laughter. For all that, it got to look very ugly, and one silly, loving little heart suffered unspeakable agonies of apprehension before it was over.

Captain Mason had stepped into Rufer's gorgeous saloon as if to collect his rents, and came out wiping his moustache as if he had eaten them, when he was hailed by Aunt Fanny's African page, and ushered into the presence in time to witness a spectacle of materialization that would astound Spiritualists.

Mason, in a puffy sort of way, stood greatly in awe of his aunt—who, in addition to all a man knows, knew all a woman knows—and would have liked to impress her. He began: "Ah, how dee do, aunt? Just been looking at Woodlawn. Company's rather gravelled, eh? Thought to give 'em a lift and take the race-course myself."

"You take Woodlawn!" cried the dowager, absolutely startled out of her discernment by the notion of getting the once-famous racing-park in the family. Then, recognizing the tremendous bounce, she said sharply, "Pshaw! Do you know a young fellow named Nettles?"

"Nettles? Net-tles?" repeated Mason, hesitating, in doubt if it was a proper acquaintance to acknowledge just then. "Well, yes—a clerk or duffer of some sort at Uncle Brown's pork-house. Oh yes, I know the cad—by sight."

"I did not ask if you knew him by scent," said the dowager, who took no pains to conceal her contempt for her nephew. "He is making up to little Sue Brown. Susannah is too silly to see it, and Walter Brown is an obstinate fool. Low people are always trying to make good connections. You can cut him out if you like."

There was a little chuckle of delight under Mason's watch-pocket, as if that dry timepiece laughed like a dice-box at the thought of the little round-eyed girl who had listened to his vaporing with no mere hypocrisy of belief; but he said, "Marry for money! eh, aunty? Not that she isn't a clean little filly, built up from the ground, neat pastern, good shoulders; but marry for money! eh, aunty?"

It was the purest of cant. He knew, his aunt knew, he would as soon think of eating his knife and fork as marrying a piece of furniture that did not feed him.

"Bah! ostrich with your head in the sand!" said his aunt. "You have played Ancient Pistol all your life. I show you where it will win. Will you play?"

Lind looked over his hand: he remembered that he had made Bob fag on the playground, and as he thought of little Sue he believed it feasible; but he saw more tricks in his hand than that one. "Well," said he affectedly, "if it is to keep out an interloper I don't mind; but you said pistols? A man that has seen Perryville, Stone River, Vicksburg, Gettysburg"—Lind got his battles mixed sometimes in the haste of composition—"don't mind saying he has seen enough of bloodshed."

"Pah!" said the dowager in the tone of Hamlet putting down Yorick's skull. "You amuse me to disgust. I'll mop up all the blood spilt with a cambric handkerchief. Will you do it?"

"Didn't I say so?" answered Mason, chafing under her open contempt. "But war cannot be carried on without funds, and Asteroid let into me heavily." He was playing for the odd trick now.

"I expected that," said the dowager contemptuously. "How much?"

"Well, say two hundred," hesitated Lind, for he expected a controversy—"for first impressions."

She only took out her portemonnaie and said, "See that you earn it."

"You bet! I mean, Thank ye, aunt," muttering as he left the room, "Confounded old cow with the crumpled horn! but who thought she would milk so easy?"

Elated with having "made a raise," he went strutting and breathing down the avenue, clanking his chains and thinking of his little cousin as already won.

But that was the way of the dowager, this Queen Catharine of the Browns. If she heard of derelictions from loyalty, she did not stop to mediate and discuss, but, like a vigorous ruler, took prompt means to put them down. We shall see how she succeeded, and what befel her chief marshal in this campaign.


The dowager's chiding laugh, low and musical, at that festive gathering of little Sue's, was at once rebuke and pardon for the past. It inspired the music: the deft fiddler touched the speaking strings with firmer bow, and the clashing violins, tinkling triangle and the shrill bubbling of the quill pipe rolled mellowing through the halls and under arches of cedar and rosebush where lovers strolled among the shrubbery. The dowager sat gossiping in the broad hall. Such talk, too! with a flavor of old bellehood in it, when Mr. Clay's graceful form visited the saloons and Prentice and Wallace were young and dashing poets of society. She quoted with quaint accentuation mellow old-fashioned verses inscribed to her at those old merry meetings, and Time rolled up his curtain to feelings and fashions of thought like the faint musk of old pressed rose-leaves. Ah me! I wrote some verses myself t'other day—little verses indeed, and for a very little girl. But I think when the brain that thought and the heart that felt so are long dust, some old, old grandam shall take them from her reticule and say to great-grandchildren, "He wrote them for me when I was but a little girl," and across the ashes of three quarters of a century the dead lips shall speak again to hearts as kind and tender. The seed sowed in thorny labor may be choked up, and, barren of tears, the dry rocks of time wither the sweet old fancies I have written, but this little seed by the wayside shall lift its tiny sheaf, and I too shall have my small harvest of immortality.

I think of it as I picture the dowager to myself, so fearfully and wonderfully made, and I confess to a chaste admiration for those old belles of society and their nepenthe of cosmetics, bringing down to us a sort of Hallow-e'en summer dressed in the quaint phraseology of an elder period. I do protest against those jejune satirists who hold them up to ridicule, forsooth! because unique and like themselves, and true, because always like themselves, to the latest lapse of affectation. Let us be sure, however quaintly the lacquer be laid on, there is real porcelain below in these reserves of old china, which we affectedly call sham only because it differs in texture and ornament from the delft cast in a common mould.

The dowager was all vivacity, looking lightly on those limber heels age is so wont to decry, but alert, sensitively conscious of that pedestal of affected juvenescence, and bold with that old pioneer blood of hers that needs but a scratch to show the cruel, revengeful Indian fighter below.

Silly Bob Nettles was romping by with Sudie—promenade all, around the porches, through the hall, and back to their places. The dowager had but time to intimate, "The young gentleman with Sue—Mr. Nettles, is it?—isn't he rather free?" and Mr. Brown to feel it rather, when they came by. Sue's hair was down, her eyes bright, cheeks flushed, her lips bubbling with laughter; and that unlucky Bob was singing,

"When we are young we are careless and happy,
But when we get old we are hairless and cappy."

One flash of those awful eyes told him the dowager had made an application of his silly and thoughtless words. Relieved from his partner, he stole off to the dressing-room to think.

He found Warrener and Wylde Payne there, and presently he began to tell "what a confounded mess he had made of it down stairs."

Mason had been charged by the angry woman with the disagreeable duty of ordering Bob Nettles to leave the house. Selfish, but good-natured, Mason by no means liked the task, and on a favorable opportunity would have softened it probably into a warning. But the temptation to vapor a little when he found his rival down was too much for him. "I call it confounded shabby," said he—"a lady of Aunt Fanny's age and character!"

"You are a relation," said Bob anxiously and not at all offended. "I wish you'd just say to Mrs. Brown I meant nothing. It was just chaff and nonsense, and I never meant anything."

"Chaff, indeed!" said Mason, egged on by Payne's and Warrener's open grins. "I think it confounded blackguardly, and you ought to be kicked out," ruffling like a cock-turkey with trailed wings.

"Go for him, Lind!" laughed Payne, "but remember the four Dutchmen and be merciful."

Thus adjured, Mason made a gesture with his open palm. Bob let out two little fists, hard as bats, one of which caught Mason in the eye, the other on the nose, and then went whirling among the tipping chairs and tables, rolling his fists over each other, as if grinding up for another blow, as he cried, "Come on, ye dog-goned gas-bag! I'll knock the socks off'n ye."

Wrath carried little Bob back to the playground. It was superbly ridiculous, but Aunt Fanny's champion was clearly discomfited; his fine lawn front was dabbled with blood, and a discoloration promised a southerly wind and a cloudy eye by morning. He withdrew, followed by Payne, who snuffed frolic mischief in the wind.

"This is not the last of it," said Mason, as he went out, in a threatening tone.

"Of course not," said Payne. "A blow has passed. But you have a soft thing of it: I don't think the other cocktail will fight. But didn't he hit out, though?" and he burst into shouts of laughter at the late scene.

Mason could not join in it very heartily: his comb was cut terribly. He had got on amazingly as Hector with the nodding plume to his little cousin that evening; but Hector with his eye blacked and his nose bloodied! He heard Bob crow, as he would have crowed had the victory been his, and he felt there must be something done.

Bob would have withdrawn too, but Warrener said, "No: you said all that was sufficient. Don't let that old griffin think you have been hectored off the place."

So Bob stayed, distrait, uneasy. Presently, little Sue, who had heard nothing, came to him, looking very pretty in her fluttering ribbons and flower-trimmed skirts. "I am going into town to-morrow—shopping," she said slyly.

"Yes," said Bob, distrait, uncomfortable, for he saw Patsey Warrener whispering to the dowager and looking at him.

"Shopping," repeated Sue, "all day, but—"

Bob was not even looking at her: he was looking at the two women.

"Is it your set next?" asked the little girl, filling up.

"Yes, I believe so," said Bob, trying to get back.

"No it ain't: I won't! I won't! There! I'm going to dance with Cousin Lind. I ain't going to dance with you no more—never! There!" And she whirled off, pettish, provoked, leaving the poor little fellow in his nervous state, lost in a sort of half-conscious misery. He had not the courage to seek her out and try to appease her: he took his hat and left without a word.

But little Sue was to pay dearly for her innocent little burst of temper. Two gentlemen behind her were commenting on our friend Major Johnstone: "What makes the major wabble so? I saw him dancing a while ago as light as the pen-feathers of a gander."

"Don't you know?" asked the other. "There was a row in the dressing-room between Short-stop Nettles and Bully Mason; and it always makes old Johnstone limp on that wounded leg to scent a duel."

They laughed and passed on, but poor little Sue, bred in the theory of the right of personal redress, felt her heart stop. That was what had made her lover so absent! What would she give to recall her words and manner—the last words she might ever have to say to him? But it was too late: he was gone.

After the party she said to the dowager, "Aunty, will there be any more trouble between Cousin Lind and Mr. Nettles?"

"There must not be," said the dowager: "I shall send for your cousin in the morning."

"In the morning?" hesitated little Sue.

"What has made you so wise?" asked the dame, seizing her niece with those bold questioning eyes. "You have never kissed a brother, put a rose in his buttonhole, and had him brought back to you stark and cold, with the rosebud unwithered. But you are right. I shall send for him at once."

Though Sue believed, yet all that night the strange fancy possessed her of seeing her playmate lover laid out in the room below, with the withering immortelles faintly scenting the awful dusk about his still cold face.

Bob Nettles's reception of the challenge by the hand of Wylde Payne was rather informal. He was just roused in the attic over the counting-house, and said after reading, "I can't promise not to visit in my employer's house if he asks me, but I'm mighty sorry."

"I'm afraid that will not do," said Payne coldly, "but you might give up your situation."

"Me give up my place?" said Bob, touched on the business edge. "If that's your biz, you'd better trot."

"Your friend will find me there," said Payne coldly, laying down his card and going.

But when Bob sought a second, all his business intimates refused, like Joe Skinner, mud clerk—i. e. receiving clerk—at the wharf: "I don't mind knocking a man over with a dray-pin in the way of business," said he, "but this ain't in my line. If anybody wants anything out o' Joe Skinner, he gets it then and there. If he wants more, the shop ain't shut: he can get it served hot at all hours. But this cold-luncheon style o' fightin' ain't in my line."

Bob succeeded in finding a second, however, with pluck enough to meet the whole Brown clan. Below is the correspondence:


Sir: You will sign the enclosed apology, and pledge yourself not to visit in the family whose hospitality you have abused, or give me the usual satisfaction.

L.B. Mason.

To R. Nettles, ESQ., Main Street.


Sir: My relations with Mr. Brown's family have nothing to do with this difference, nor will I have them drawn into it. For yourself, I am sorry a necessary defence of my person resulted so seriously to you, but I have no apologies to make for injuries you brought upon yourself.

This will be conveyed to you by Captain Deane Lee, who is authorized to act in the premises.

R. Nettles.

To Captain L.B. Mason, Galt House.


Wylde Payne, ESQ.,

Galt House.

Deane Lee,

Conductor Street Railroad.


I have often wondered at the freshness, loquacity and altogether unreal tone of the duellists' rooms pending an encounter; and I can only liken it to the mind of an assiduous chess-player, which still even in dreams is tilting with ivory knights and banning with puppet bishops. Such fancies are accepted among duelling men as the real sentiments that move and govern society. To Lind Mason, who was naturally made of paste-board and stuffed with bran, they were the breath in his nostrils. He vapored of the family as if, instead of plain Brown, it had been born in the purple. Payne on his return had said, "The funk wanted to apologize," and that "Lind had a soft thing of it," chaffing his principal not a little over the prospects of his aunt's generosity.

"Ye-as," said Lind, negligently drawing the long silky moustache and beard through the hollow of his hand and letting the points drop. "Woodlawn. We talked it over. 'Marry, my boy,' said the old girl, 'and settle.' 'All right!' said I, 'aunty: I'll marry, and you settle.' Payne and I made out a liberal schedule of my liabilities for her lawyer last night. My motto is, be off at the tap if you can, or a wink before it, and come down the quarter under the whip. I consider my autograph on Aunt Fanny good for a thousand any day. T'other day I said to Payne I wanted the stick and two hoops ($100), and Aunt Fanny just said, 'Double it, and arrange with your cousin Sue.' Soon as this baggytell is over little Sue Brown jines the Masons.—Here's to her, gentlemen! and no heeltaps. No need to say fellows of this party are welcome to our table;" and he delicately tipped off the wine, saying "he had drunk better."

"Payne says the fellow will apologize," said one. "What will you do?"

"Well," drawled Mason, dipping a cracker in the fragrant sherry and munching, "a fellow that saw it all from Mill Springs to Appomattox doesn't care for these little things. If it was the first time, or even the second or third, I wouldn't stand it. But after that the thing loses its gloss and gets to be a confounded bore. You see it's getting up so early; and there's your man squatting on the grass like a hurt wild-duck, and all the fellows scared and ugly, and poking at you as if it was your fault. And the confounded police, and the bother of keeping out of the way, and maybe lose the spring meeting. It gets to be deuced low, fellows. No: if the little man will own up and quit annoying somebody—" with a lazy wink. "I drink to Sue Mason, née Brown, gentlemen. I don't care: he may get off whole. Of course a written apology."

"Apology," said Major Johnstone, whose impressible nature went with the extremists. "My God, sir! is a venerable lady of wealth and fashion—of the American peerage, by George, sir! American peerage—to be insulted in an assembly of her nearest relatives, and the base scullion to escape with a bare 'Sorry for it'? A pocket full of apologies and a back full of bruises, as Tom Marshall said, by George! Look at Rule 10, Tipperary Code," slapping Barrington's Sketches emphatically. "No, sir! Such an example would corrupt American youth."

"Bosh!" said another, who sat on the side of the bed and rocked his legs alternately as if for a wager. "That rot is past salting down. A lady's name involved! Our chivalrous principal is right. Honorably adjusted, satisfactory, etc., is the end of it."

"But a blow?" said the major, like a weathercock in contradictory flaws, and running over the leaves. "Here is Rule 5—"

"That's Payne," said one, interrupting the major unceremoniously at a step outside.

"Payne never walked that fast in his life," was the reply. "Payne was born tired. There's somebody with him."

The door opened, and Deane Lee in gray tweed, from foot to forage-cap the dashing soldier, saluted. "Honor to report from Captain Nettles," he said, touching his cap. Military titles prevail on such occasions.

"Will you join us?" said Payne, motioning to the refreshments, as Mason read the note.

"Don't care if I do. Plain: no cooked drinks for me," said the envoy briefly.

This struck the major as having a judicial bearing upon the coats of the stomach. He cocked his chin and began unconsciously to imitate the dashing stranger.

"An unfortunate affair," said Payne. He had thought it amusing, absurd, but something in this young fellow impressed him also, and he said it, and meant it.

"D—— unlucky!" said the other, in much the same tone as if he had said "lucky." "But my man is all right. He had to hunt me up, or I'd been in your lines before now." He took the ice from the tumbler, dashed off the moisture, and ate it like a salamander.

The major was possessed. He whispered behind his hand to his neighbors, "Never saw but one like him."

"Who?" asked several, for the easy, cool assurance of Bob Nettles's second affected them all.

The major shook his head and sighed grievously.

"Was he killed?" asked one eagerly.

"Kill him!" said the major in hollow emphasis of scorn: "no, sir."

"Died, then?" suggested another.

"No, sir," said the major: "his worst enemy could not say that of him. No, he didn't die."

"Drowned?" put in a third, venturing at the major's conundrum.

"No, sir," said the major gutturally. "Water couldn't drown him. It is not wet enough. Lost."

"Lost!" marvelled his auditors at this sphinx. "How?"

"Married," said the major in basso-profundo, husky with emotion.

Such an ornament lost to the chivalry of duelling accentuated their admiration of his after-type in Bob's second.

"When I last saw him," continued the major, in the tone of Griffith describing the last hours of Wolsey—

"Well?" ejaculated all in one voice.

"He was buying seed-corn."

Degradation could no lower go, and in the pause they could hear the blue fly buzz in the window-pane.

Mason had beckoned Payne aside. The two found that reply a hard nut to crack. Payne had regarded the duel as a huge hoax, and counted on easily bluffing the burgher's second. But bluffing those steely nerves yonder, that stood at ease with a suggestion of military accoutrements, was not to be thought of. Nor could his principal go out, under the pretext of controlling the associations of Walter Brown's family, without Walter Brown's approval.

"For proper reasons, no doubt," said Payne courteously, "your principal ignores what is, with us, the gravamen of his offence—his behavior in the house of Mr. Mason's relations."

Pretty well covered for Mr. Payne, but it would not do.

"Don't want to ignore anything," said Deane Lee. "Just don't want petticoats mixed up in it. My man does not pledge worth a—pyrotechnic." He had got it in at last, and with a step—a peremptory refusal to submit to dictation of any kind.

Payne felt outmanœuvred and crowded. He saw Bob Nettles was not to be bullied out of little Sue, and they must give up that point. "My principal is disposed to waive that part," said Payne haughtily, "rather than involve others."

"All right!" said Deane carelessly. "It's not in the regulations—but come to taps. We want this thing over before reveille. I've got an infernal mule-team to yank up and down these streets after that."

It was done with the easiest nonchalance, yet Wilde Payne felt he was bitted and spurred, and the butt of this ridiculous duel might prove to be the man who had brought it about.

"I don't know where he picked up Deane Lee," said he after his rival left; "but Deane will fight his man. It isn't going to be such a soft thing, after all."

"He is only a street-car conductor," said a callow Brown, who looked on, and thought all this very heroic and fine.

"I don't care," said the major, rising on his crutch, "but if that man drives a mule, it is a credit, sir—to the mule; and, gentlemen, I wish you well out of it—I do, by George!" and he stumped off and out of the room. The major's departure was as significant as the sinking of the mercury in the sealed tube: it indicated a stormy atmosphere outside, setting in favor of the other side.

But an incident just then, seeming to confirm some of Mason's vaporing, created a profound sensation, and so complicated and embarrassed the duel for that gentleman as to tax all his ingenuity and address to come out of it with anything like credit. It adds a lustre to his boast that he was "betting on a certainty" and "intended to put the saddle on the right horse." A servant presented a card on a tray, with "Lady in ladies' parlor C wishes to see Captain Mason."

Mason took it up, looked flushed, flattered, more pompous than ever. "Here, Payne," said he; and the two whispered.

"You'd better not," said Payne critically: "it will compromise you."

"But she knows I am here—meddlesome servant, etc." In fact, Mason was too flattered by the visit to deny the lady or himself.

"Poor girl!" was whispered about—"desperately attached."—"She needn't be uneasy: it's the other fellow ought to be looked after."

To explain who this mysterious visitor was we must go back a little.

Sudie arose the morning after her garden-party flushed and feverish, with a strange consciousness of being unlike herself. She drifted from room to room; peeped into the parlor, with its fading garlands, in a little superstitious awe of her last night's vision, and then took to standing at the gate or looking from the west windows toward the city, as if she expected some one. But she did not: it was only that all her anxiety lay there. At 10 A.M. she took the pony carriage to town and hurried to Aunt Fanny, only to learn that the etiquette of the code had excluded the dowager's messenger, and that Her Majesty was so incensed thereat as to resolve to let matters take their course. This by no means satisfied Sudie. She thought it horrible, wicked. She would see papa—she had all a child's confidence in papa—and he could stop it. Passing the hotel, an impulse seized her to appeal to her cousin; for he was her cousin, Sudie repeated to herself to justify her resolution; and so, without any formed plan of appeal, she sent up her card. She was enough confused and embarrassed at her cousin's entrance to have deceived a wiser man than Lind Mason; but, luckily, he was better at reading the backs of his cards than a woman's face, and, to his credit, felt supremely silly.

"Cousin Lind," said the little girl, speaking the first thought in her mind, "I was going to see papa, and—" and she broke down.

"Hem! Mr. Brown is in the city, ha? Of course," blundered Mason, shy as an awkward girl to her first lover, and obstinately turning that eye away from her on which Bob Nettles had left his mark.

"And—and—" hesitated Sudie, with a little shuddering, nervous laugh, like a smothered cry, "have you and Mr. Nettles met this morning?"

To do Mason justice, he was too artificial and shallow to retain any resentments. He was only confused at his novel position, and before he could muster a reply Sudie went on: "Because I want you and him to be friends," with that tremulous laugh again; "and I should be so mad if—if he was to—to hurt you."

"By Joe!" thought Lind, "what am I to do if she proposes outright?" He was terribly scared: no one is so timid as one of these fast, horsey men in the presence of an innocent, pure-minded girl. The situation was trying: he thought it was his cue to put his arm about her and say something; but when he saw how she sat back in the chair, and had tested his own nerves, he felt he could not do it. Little Sue, therefore, had it all to herself, recovering courage by her own freedom, without any conception of what was troubling the thoughts of the great, handsome, awkward booby before her. "Aunt Fanny wants you to be friends," she continued, "and so do I."

Mason began to pluck up a little at this. The association of Aunt Fanny's name suggested that she had talked the matter over with her niece, as she had with him, and broken the ice for him. He looked over his shoulder to see if the parlor was clear. She was leaning forward now, holding out two plump little hands, like a child going to beg, and with a sly, roguish look too. He thought he could do it now: he would drop gracefully on one knee and—

And Sudie went on: "Somebody else will be mad too, you don't know." A half whisper from the roguish pucker of those dimpling lips: "Ma'amselle Hortense."

The blood rushed to that ensanguined face till it looked like a great romanete apple: "Hortense?"

"Yes," with a half-dozen mischievous, confidential little nods. "There! Now you go right straight and see Mr. Nettles, and tell him I sent you; and if he doesn't behave himself to you, just let me know." And, nodding intelligence, little Sue rose with a rustle and flutter of puffs and bows, in childish confidence of having done her whole duty and stopped that wicked, wicked business.

That skilful card-player Mason was as completely stumped as if some one had raked down the stakes on a pair of deuces against his exhibit of the four aces. Nothing but the most gracious condescension and chaste humility of salutation had passed between him and his aunt's French maid; yet shrewd little Sudie, with her intuitive woman's instinct, had shot her arrow in the dark and cloven the wand.

She went out in the innocent simplicity of her childlike faith, and it was hours before she came to realize how utterly she had failed in stopping the execution of that deadly purpose.

How often is it the case with her sex that, having no other coin than the affections, so dear to themselves, they over-value them for others, and only know from finding them soiled and trampled in the mud how little they are estimated in the hard and selfish dealings of man with man! But the little girl went off, happy in her delusion. God bless the rest of heart from apprehension that it gave her!

But Mason had to slip aside into the hotel bar and drink a mighty jorum of brandy before he could rejoin his friends. As he thought of all the confounded annoyances and embarrassments growing out of the little girl's discovery, including the loss of her hand and fortune, the terse and pithy brevity of his summing-up of the situation was an epitome of Spartan eloquence. It was, "D—— it!"

Will Wallace Harney.


Leave the town and the highway, journey onward deep among the hills, and in their farthest nooks and crannies you will come to places where the hired girls are living happily. You will come to places where the hired girls do not long to be old nor long to be dead—spots where there are no vulgar, insulting rich, untrained to the management of servants and ignorant of the routine of good housework—neighborhoods where the maxim of the ancient noblesse of France, that only the low-born are hard with their hirelings, still prevails. In Mid New York, for instance, are regions sweet as Thessaly, hilly, shaggy with woods, and peopled by descendants of the Puritans bearing old Shakespearian names—Ford, Page, Peck and Scroop—a yeomanry on whom the rich soil of their present seats has had a powerful effect: they enjoy their hills in health and mellow content, and their servants live at ease with them.

The New York farmer of Puritan descent is a patriot. He can never enough gloat over the number of Britishers his ancestors killed at the battle of Lexington. He loves politics. He is great at voting. He stands up for his candidate almost to the fighting-point. Squires Catesby and Plunket did have a little fight at the Forge Hollow election; not actually coming to blows—that would be too absurd for men of their figure and property—but hunching and shouldering each other around the tavern bar-room until they hunched the stove over and the chairs and tables upside down. A farmer of their type has a mind busied in operating, American fashion, on every conceivable topic—you will see such a one in town, broad-shouldered as an Egyptian statue, matching silk for his wife after selling a herd of cattle—and this kind of man is not the one to be "snooping round the house" worrying his servants. His wife is like himself, a comfortable person to serve. It would be hard to find a more luxurious woman, one fonder of taking naps and of driving about the country paying visits—our opulent New York farmer has not the least suspicion that his wife can walk anywhere—and partly because of a paucity of fashionable calls and milliners' windows, partly because the country doctor is such a good one to make her think she needs medicine, she cultivates a gentle hypochondria, spins talk spider-like from her own frame, thinks she lives in a sort of human oven where she is in constant peril of being overdone, and so is tender of her domestics, lest they be overdone. The rich farmer's wife does not wash trencher nor scrape dish; she boils not, neither does she skin apple or potato; she occupies herself with fancy-work that would make Solomon in all his glory stare. You ought to see her best bedroom: it is a bower of bonbonnerie of her own make. Its treatment, as an architect would say, is in the Decorated pocketed style—pockets on the wall for papers; pockets for rags and scraps; a double pocket for slippers; one for your watch, one for your comb, one for lamplighters, one for burnt matches; ever so many others for what you can't guess; and all beaded, bugled, tasselled and embroidered to form a perfect zodiac of splendors.

Though the country wife is kind to her domestics, she has a knack of getting the best out of them. The girl who scorches things and boils tea as if some incantation of double, double toil and trouble, fire burn and teapot bubble, had got into her head—the girl who stands like a Stoughton bottle and bawls "Ma'am!" whenever she is spoken to—the slow girl who can't tell time, forgets to put on the teakettle, and never gets beyond "one I, one—two I, two," on the kitchen clock—the small servant with the bad cold who will sit by the parlor fire coughing, snuffing and breathing hard—the girl like an overgrown man who slobbers dish-water on the floor and steps in it—the Deutsche girl who spoils the parlor clock turning it upside down to dust it thoroughly,—these and worse become reliable people under the sway of the old-fashioned country housewife. The Deutsche girl becomes a paragon in the farmhouse, quickly falling into Yankee ways and picking up Yankee kitchen phrases, and turning them with a bold originality. "Them clothes is bone dry," says the Deutsche girl. "Oh land! yes: they got a bone drying to-day. I gave them clothes a bone rubbing and a bone boiling, and to-morrow they'll get a bone ironing, you bet," says she. Next to her rank the Dane and the Swede. The Irish girl is never a congenial inmate of the farmhouse. The Irish girl is too noisy and too much given to lying. The last might be endured—the farmer's wife would rather hear an Irish girl tell forty lies than sing one song—but the noise she makes talking to the butcher's boy, the peddler, the essence-man and the ash-gatherer is insufferable; and when the Irish rag-merchant bursts open the kitchen door roaring, "God bless you! you're a real lady; got any rags? don't sell to them theivin' Jews, they're villains; sold your rags to a man that pays more than me? divil a man in the county pays more than me," why, the farmhouse quiet is torn to ribbons. And then the Irish girl is cross to visitors, who form the solace and charm of country life. "I wants no lady-visitors around me; they makes too much bodderin' wid towels and wather; they're always a-washin' of theirselves. They wants a clean towel to every one of their tin fingers: they're afraid us gurrels sha'n't earn our wages. Give me men for my money: they ain't always a-cleanin' of theirselves," growls the Irish girl.

No girl of any species can compare with an oldish American hired girl. Give Sar' Ann her due. She works at a spanking pace; she is "poison clean;" she can do up a shirt fit for a funeral, and she is a dabster at cooking. In butchering or in haying and harvesting she will pitch in and work without a murmur until she is pale and damp with weariness, and at such times will let her hair go until her head looks like Encke's comet, one halo of frowse, with a frowsy knob in its periphery. Still, she will put up with no asperity from her mistress: "the foodle ages" are done with, look you! as to Sar' Ann. Let her mistress once reprimand her, she turns the tables on that lady slap, dab. "It's a poor story," ejaculates Sar' Ann, "for you to talk so, Mis' Fife. I've dug and delved for you six year, and run my daylights out of me, and I won't do it no longer. It's jaw, jaw, jaw with you till I'm worn to a shadder. I've spunked up now, Mis' Fife, and I'll light out. I never crep' nor crawled to nobody, and I won't begin now. I'll throw my dishcloth right smack up the chimbly, and I'll clear." If you have a servant who understands her rights and business better than you do yours, where are you? "Why, there you are," as the man in the play says.

In the farmhouse kitchen you sometimes find a girl rare, now-a-days, outside of old portraits, and one seen only in spots as sequestered as the haunts of the deer and wild-duck. She has hair of a burnished copper color, eyes so fair they reflect crystal sparkles of light from their lashes, a pure skin, round cheeks, a delicate cocked-up nose, a chin all weakness and a look of wistful propitiation. Another girl peculiar to country kitchens, not so rare, but delicious, is a fresh, dark nymph of a temperament both gay and imperturbable. This one has almost perfect beauty—black hair that should be crowned with water-cresses, black eyes with a thrilling glance, and a sudden, frank, enchanting smile. Perhaps you will say her nose and lips are a line too heavy: there is no skimping in her outlines. The country-people never find out that she is handsome. "Adeline would be quite handsome if she was not so dark," say they.

A well-to-do farmhouse, where the work is "done up" early, is a pleasant place to work in. Adeline has an hour of liberty every day in which she may stand in the door "dressed up," looking out over the meadows, or run to The Corners to "borry a teaspoonful of soda," or look over a newspaper. If Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoigne Cecil, marquis of Salisbury (what a sound that has!), were the farmer's guest, Adeline would condescend to talk to him during this hour when she is waiting for tea-time. "I guess you feel pretty lonesome over here," she would say; and when he replied that he felt "like a crumb of bread at the bottom of a trowsers pocket," as he probably would, she would try to amuse him with innocent rustic familiarity. It never occurs to her that she is not as good as "them kings" or anybody else, she has such an idea of her own smartness and respectability. At five o'clock she sits down to tea with her mistress. The men-folks take supper after milking is done, the farmer supping with his men that he may talk over the harvest. When there is company the hired people have all the good things going—jelly-cake sixteen streaks deep, floating islands, preserves, tarts, pound-sweet apples boiled in sweet cider, boiled tongue, inconceivable pickles, cabbage salad—everything. After a company supper the hired man is just able to crawl out and perch himself on the dooryard fence, where he sits blown up as by hydraulic pressure until bedtime brings him the deep satisfaction of a hired man's sleep.

A circumstance that makes farmhouse servitude agreeable is, that the hired girl's friends are welcome there. Her mother comes often to see her. This interesting old woman has a face dried down as if to last for ages, strong gray hair and a smile that drives back a score of wrinkles in her cheeks, being "tough as a biled owl." She wears a black bombazine dress, and under it a heavy quilted petticoat, in which she invariably sleeps, goodness gracious only knows why. She comes in with the remark, "Sorry to hender;" she calls flowers "blummies," houses, "housen," bouquets, "beaupots;" terminates her assertions with "'sfurzino" ("as far as I know"), and talks with a muffled yang-yang, as if she had an invisible tumor at the end of her nose. Her observations would remind you of something in Browning's Aristophanes' Apology

You too, my Chrusomelolthian-Phaps

for example. Her conversation has the effect of hasheesh for lengthening the apparent duration of time: the Happy Thought man would call it dry as an extinct volcano; it drives everybody to the wall; is a perfect battering-ram for that—all talk and no wool, you know. She is perpetually finding mares' nests and getting news by the "grapevine telegraph," and she is always looking for signs in the air, in the embers, in candle-snuff, in empty teacups, as if mysterious laws like Kepler's threaded the universe and she knew the clue to them. If the cat turns her tail to the fire, the hired girl's mother thinks something will happen. She has a great deal of trouble. "Trouble sticks to me," says she. She keeps turkeys which are creatures that assert their American origin by running away to the woods and going wild at every opportunity, and a respectable old lady in cap and spectacles cannot chase wild turkeys through the woods; besides, they insist on roosting in her neighbors' cherry trees, a proceeding sure to kill the trees. And she keeps a cow with a genius for opening gates. Her cow has a habit of standing meditatively before a garden gate swinging her tail, but suddenly, after looking cautiously round, she will hook one horn into the gate by a quick twirl of her head, and by giving it a series of searching shakes will unfasten the latch, after which she will shoulder herself into the garden and take off its cream in great content. These facts are calculated to inflict a wound on neighborly peace not so deep as a well nor so wide as a church-door, but all the king's horses and all the king's men could not make it whole again. The hired girl's mother keeps hens too, and being a lone woman lets them run round the house for company. In winter you will be surprised to see a hen's face looking from her parlor window with an air of being at home.

The hired girl's sister and sister's husband also come frequently to see her, riding in an old wagon drawn by a large, gray, famished horse that devours the farmer's oats by the bushel. The sister's husband is a carpenter by trade. He usually has a large boil or carbuncle on his arm that gives him leisure, and he sits by the kitchen fire with his chair tilted back, rubbing a grease spot on the wall from his bushy black hair and getting redder and redder in the face, talking about his boil until his head looks like a lampwick that has burned too long and needs snuffing. They stay until the sisters begin to quarrel. "Your coffee is dish-water and your gravy paste," sneers the hired girl's sister before she goes, alluding to the fact that thin coffee and fried pork gravy, in which are lumps that break on the tongue and fill the mouth with dry flour, are the vulnerable points of the farmhouse breakfast.

When there is a young girl in the kitchen, she is on good terms with the jingle-legged boys of the farm. She is interested in their pets, especially in that funny one of the bear tribe that has the head of a fox with shaggy whiskers round his sharp visage, and that sits on his hind legs and holds his food in his hands and looks around him when he eats, and that makes friends so insinuatingly with the puppies, kittens and ducks until he finds a chance to devour them—the raccoon. Of evenings, when the barefoot boys sit on the kitchen lounge tired with their long day's work, yet scuffling and knocking their elbows and knees together, she keeps up an incessant tittering with them. And in the beginning of the season, when they clear out the leavings of last year's pease, beans and seed-corn from the garret, she has a good time with the boys a-dodging the wasps that fly through the garret singing their bass buzz and carrying blobs of mud like boxing-gloves on their feet, and taking such irregular zig-zags their course cannot be foreseen. She wastes her time then watching quivering fights between spiders and unfortunate wasps that have become entangled in cobwebs among the rafters. "She has found a te-he's nest with a lot of ha-ha's eggs in it," says the farmer's wife, listening at the foot of the garret-stairs. "That girl is not worth her keep." The girl has another gala-day with the boys if the bees swarm in May: that brings a mild jollity to the house, because

A swarm of bees in May
Is worth a load of hay;
In June
Is worth a silver spoon;
In July
It ain't worth a fly.

She thinks it is fun to see the bees make a rush at the hired man blundering about in the way, and when he throws his hat at them, thinking to fool them, and sets to whipping his own ears, and the wise creatures settle in his hair, and the boys madly whisk hay in the air for his salvation, she "laughs like ten christenings."

Much farmhouse work has a trace of pleasure. Such is going a-greening in mornings of the still season before grasshoppers chirp or moths flutter or bats whir or dewdrops patter—mornings when people look up and repeat the distich,

Mackerel sky! mackerel sky!
It won't be long wet, and it won't be long dry.

While the girl gathers skokeweed, milkweed, dock and dandelion from the fields, deerweed from the corners of the fence that runs around the woods, cowslip from the fragrant swamp, and adder's tongue and crinkle-root from the black forest earth, to make a dish loved by women and hated by men, she sees the airy attacks of crows upon a hawk, and his escape from them by sailing up, up, in circles delightful to contemplate for their height and immensity to altitudes his enemies cannot attain. At times she is near enough to a hawk to catch one glance from his bright, observant, defiant eye—a different glance from that of the caged bird. At times she finds an owl dreaming on the edge of a wood, and gazes long into its strange, deep, contemplative, satisfying eyes, and recollects the boys say an owl knows whether a hunter's gun is loaded or not. She sees the crows make an attack on the owl too, rushing upon it with a wild "ha! ha!" of multitudinous laughter and clattering of wings that are met with still indifference, for the owl knows that not one dares venture within reach of its iron claw and bending beak. And, ah, too rarely, she beholds an eagle on the dry branch of a tall pine. He, like the owl, encounters with nonchalance the insolent hate of the crows, who caw, flap their wings about his head and perch around him in myriads. When he rises, as he waves his broad and long wings in the leisurely movements that plunge him so swiftly through the blazing sky, the eagle will grasp a crow in his talons and drop it dead on the plain, where the girl picks it up, a mass of crushed feathers.

To go blackberrying is a fête. It falls on a day when the morning meadows, veiled in cobwebs strung with drops of dew, assert that though

The wind may alter twenty ways,
A tempest cannot blow.
It may blow north, it still is warm;
Or south, it still is clear;
Or east, it smells like a clover-farm;
Or west, no thunder fear.

They go in straw hats and sun-bonnets, with tinkling milkpails and buckets in their wagon, and driving the sleek bay brood mare as carefully as if she were crammed with nitro-glycerine and would blow up at a touch. They travel merrily along a road that is nothing but "the bare possibility of going somewhere;" they pass through a pair of bars; they follow a lonely farm-track; they stop in a stump-lot, where they leave the mare in a doze, and, crossing the light baked earth of the clearing still covered with puff-balls and the dry stalks and kexes of forest plants, they dive into the berry-patch, a steep gulf of briers terraced by former berry-seekers. As they pick their way downward in the hot sunshine, the pealing sound of waters comes up to meet them through dense woods beneath their feet, for a broad, dark, perfumed stream, margined with pebbles and yeasty and barmy with foam, rushes through the bottom of the ravine. Refreshing is its odor when the berry-pickers reach it: they quaff its moist breath as one would drink some melanagogue, some old medicine able to cure sorrow or fear. The sight of its heavy verdure and of its gurges heaped high with froth lifts them like immortal thoughts. Half an hour of skipping stones on the water, a lunch on a rock, a drive homeward with their wagonload of fruit, and the day's work is done.

There is a ball in summer for the hired girl's delectation. You should stand in the village street and look up at the lighted tavern ball-room, and listen to the thundering floor. You would see the heads of the village tailor, harness-maker and photographer bobbing up and down; the hired man's head, with its heavy forelock whipping his forehead; the white brow and swarthy cheeks of the farm-boy leaping above the rest; and the hired girl's rosy face shaken up with scores of other young girls' faces, wagging, whirling, swaying, in delirious arcs and parabolas, and all wearing a perturbed and anxious expression, as if they were hard put to it to keep track of the fiddler's "Swing pardners once and a half; all sashay; allemand left," and so on. The hired girl dances "every heat," and at half-past three rides home through a landscape like a line from Milton, giving a vast idea of night and darkness and the stillness brooding over a woody, pastoral country. As she lifts the kitchen latch she sees a line of citron-green light behind the eastern hills, and

The curled moon
Is like a little feather
Fluttering far down the gulf.

Later comes the hired man on foot, having run the risk of being "chawed up" by farmhouse dogs for a mile and a half. The two seek their beds through Saharas of darkness in woodhouse, kitchen, back entry and back stairs, and at five are both up milking and milk-skimming.

Going to funerals is a heart's delight for the hired girl. She relishes the ride in fine weather, the good funeral sermon, the sight of other people's best clothes and furniture, the touch of tragedy we all like in life, the cheerful reaction after the solemnity, and the staving good supper she cooks when they come home.

"Bill, go up to Ford Hill and find out about that funeral," is her entreaty on the eve of the event.

Bill has been raking with the horse-rake, or, worse, mowing pease all day. Whatever you have to do in this world, if you have ever mowed pease, that you will acknowledge to be the hardest work you have ever done. Bill is tired. There is a hole in the toe of his boot into which a stiff pea-straw has thrust itself once in five minutes all day—a circumstance exhausting to the nervous system of a hired man. And he had the heifer to hunt before milking. The old cows wait at the bars to come up, but the heifer stays a mile away at the top of the pasture. Bill can see her every night lying with her ears pricked up against the sky, and never stirring until she feels a pebble against her forehead. Then she gallops homeward as if remembering that Bill's motto is a kick in time saves nine. However, Bill likes to accommodate. "I'm off like a pot-leg," says he.

"What time is it to be?" asks the hired girl when he returns.

"I forgot to ask," he replies.

"Who's a-going to preach?"

"Nobody said," is the answer.

"Is it at the house or church?"

"I didn't think to find out," returns he.

"Well, you are a nimshi!" declares she.

"Go yourself next time," rejoins he.

"I wish I had your wooden head for a chopping-bowl," says she.

"Gaul darn it! you're never suited," says he.

"Needn't get your Dutch up: we're going together. You may depend on takin' on us to that funeral: him and her is going," says she.

"Walking is too good for you, by thunder!" says he.

"It's a sin to be as mad as hops at nothing," says she.

"I'm as much of a angel as you be: put a pair of wings on you, you'd be a hen turkey," says he.

"I ain't a goose: I've got a head on me, Bill Blowers."

"So has a pin."

"If I'm a pin, you let me be: children and fools shouldn't play with edge tools. I'm a pin that'll go to that funeral, then. It'll be a good funeral—singing and everything right up to the handle."

"Plague take it! I knowed how it would be when I started on the arrant," he grumbles.

"You're blue as a whetstone now, but a couple of fritters big as rhinoceroses on your plate to-morrow night will set you up again, I guess," she says.

The hired man has a monstrous inaptitude for doing an errand. The time he spends going to the Green to get the horses shod is enormous. He can be depended on for nothing but to come home across lots when the dinner-horn blows.

Said the farmer to his hired man, "Go to the Holler and bring the square immediately."—"That saws my legs off," he added soon after, seeing "Square" Catesby pounding along the road toward the farm with a face of great importance and concern, the hired man in full swing behind, evidently bringing him.

Melvine, a fat, lazy farmer—so fat he had lost his voice, probably inside of him somewhere—while dozing away a winter afternoon yawned to such an immoderate degree that he dislocated his jaw. The hired man was despatched to the village for a doctor, and in the course of revolving ages returned, without the doctor. "Where is the doctor?" cried the folks. "He wasn't to hum," replied the hired man.—"Misery to tell! Didn't you bring one? Go back and get one," shouted they. The hired man mogged off, hitched up again, and after an interminable period, during which Melvine cast figurative ashes on his bald head (if they had been actual wood-ashes and "lively" he could not have suffered worse), did bring a doctor. The doctor gave Melvine's jaw a tap: it flew into place. Here pause: trouble no kind heart with the hired man's fate when Melvine regained the use of his jaw.

The hired girl's autumn and winter beam with long evenings of leisure, when neighbors drop in for talk, games and stories go round, and spitzenbergs and gillyflowers, nutcakes, cider, and butternuts that make cider taste wonderfully delicious, are enjoyed. In farm-houses among the hills games are played that were known to the hearths of the Angles. "Saddleback" is one. The farmer takes a brand from the fire, saying,

"Robin's alive—as live as a bee:
If he dies in my hand, you may saddleback me;"

and gives it to his next neighbor, who repeats the verse and hands the brand to his neighbor; and thus it goes round the circle. He in whose hand the brand goes out ('tis the hired man, of course, who never can scramble through his verse half fast enough) must be blind-folded and guess what objects are held before him, all he guesses wrong to be placed on his back at the end of his guessing. Then he lies face down on the floor, while kitchen tables and chairs, skillets, pokers, tongs, frying-pans, the bread-board, the rolling-pin, the egg-beater, all are piled on his back; after which he rises slowly and overturns the things with a house-quaking crash which is rather interesting to hear and see. Antique stories that were never written, or, if at all, were written in dead languages that tell no tales at the present time, fill the lapse of the winter evening until it is time honest folks were in bed and thieves a-jogging. Listen to this: it has the flavor of a sip of mulse from a yew-tree keg. It was told among the Druids, maybe, long ago in gray-lit ages a thousand years before the mediæval darkness, when King Cymbeline was building his city of Warwick, and his fair daughter Imogen was having adventures in a cavern. Call it How Cunning paid better than Industry.

Richard was a hard-working, saving farmer: his brother Ned was a lazy lout. Ned's cow died, and he hung the cowskin up in the barn to dry, too lazy to carry it to market. After the cowskin was dried up, Ned started for town to sell it. On the way, feeling lazy, he wrapped himself in his cowskin and went to sleep in a barn's hay-mow. Night came, and some robbers with a lantern entered the barn to count their gold. Ned with a groan rolled himself down from the mow, horns, hoofs and tail, and the robbers fled in terror, leaving their money behind. "Where did you get your gold?" asked Richard, seeing his brother's treasure.—"I sold my cowskin for a penny a hair," answered Ned. Then Richard killed his cows, dried their skins and took them to market. Enraged at not selling them, he fell upon his brother, tied him in a bag and took him to the river to drown him. Before throwing him in he thought he would give Ned a good licking; so he went to the woods to get some withes. While he was gone a man with a flock of sheep came by, who, seeing Ned struggling in the bag on the river-bank, asked, "What are you doing in the bag?"—"Going to heaven," replied Ned.—"How is that?" questioned the man.—"You get in here and you will see," said Ned. The man untied the bag, and took Ned's place therein. Ned tied him up, and drove the sheep off to market. When Richard returned from the woods he gave the shepherd in the bag a basting, threw him into the river, and after the last bubble had risen to the surface went home, where he found Ned counting a pile of gold. "Whence that treasure?" asked Richard.—"The bubbles you saw when you drowned me turned into sheep, and I took them to town and sold them," quoth Ned.

As a rule, the hired girl and the hired man are not good friends: he derides her, and she scorns him. "I do expise that Bill Blowers: he don't know beans when the bag's untied. He's as bashful as nothing," says she. She likes the farm-hand by the day: she often visits his cotland on the edge of a woods. He really is a man to respect, knows a reason for the crooks in the mully scythe and in the light cradle's snath, and can tell the time of day by holding his hoe-handle straight in the sunshine and looking at its shadow on the ground. The hired girl particularly hates the Scotch hired man, a fellow with a face like a wig-block, white hair and eyebrows, and a working-suit made apparently of old snuff-rags and flatiron-holders. He keeps his eye on the blue-ringed cider pitcher of winter evenings, and, to the huge disgust of his comrades, drinks up the vial of cider vinegar placed in the pail with the boiled potatoes and sweet, buttery pork which form their lunch when they go to the forest chopping. Ralph Waldo Emerson says that an awkward man is graceful when he is asleep or at work or agreeably amused. It is perfectly evident that Emerson has never seen the Scotch hired man. When he is asleep his knurly limbs are twisted to an indescribable pitch, his right elbow under his head, his left in the small of his back; when at work he humps himself out of all proportion; and when agreeably amused he canters about as does a new-born calf with its legs thrust out at different angles.

The hired girl does fall in love with the English hired man on occasion. "Stay me with flagons and comfort me with apples, for I am sick of love!" cries the farmer's wife then. 'Tis a fine thing for the hired man. He escapes the miseries human beings have to endure going courting—the "slicking up," the hair-oiling, the blacking of wrinkly, turn-up-toed fine boots, the wearing of a fine shirt that must have been made to fit a pelican, it is so bulgy-bosomed, and the awful and stiffening sensations a man feels when he goes into a stark neat parlor to see a girl. He does his courting with rolled-up sleeves and the dust of the bean-thrashing in his hair. The English hired man is a prize for the girl. When first he comes to America he wears coarse linen, heavy shoes, corduroys and a pair of broad, inelastic, red and white suspenders, capable of sustaining several tons, that he bought in Liverpool before sailing. He eats a leg of mutton and potatoes to match at a sitting; he slips the half of a custard pie on to his plate, and takes down a whole "boiled Indian" like smoke if it stands at his hand. He ignores salt-spoons, sugar-spoons and butter-knives, and, if the truth must be told, cleans his knife in his mouth. (The man whom Professor Proctor, the astronomer, saw at Des Moines putting his knife down his throat and sticking it into the butter, and wrote home to the Gentleman's Magazine about, was an English hired man on his travels.) Nevertheless, living among decent people corrects these blemishes in the Englishman, and his merits soon shine undimmed. He has a hale countenance; he has length of limb, breadth of grasp, glorious plenitudes of health, English self-conceit, the taste for toil and distaste for pleasure; and he has a talent for economizing. He carries his money around until it is worked into a hard ball in his pocket-book, so that when he wants to lend some he has to peel it off. Vast are the revenues of parsimony. "Sense and economy must rule in a world that is made of sense and economy." The English hired man is the first of adventurers. His wages are waiting for him; his farm is prepared; bees, beeves, orchards and fields of wheat are his for the taking. The hired girl marries him, and her career ends in a blaze of happiness and prosperity.

Mary Dean.


On the morning of the twenty-fifth of February, Mr. Nibby glanced out of the window and unhesitatingly pronounced himself the most miserable man in Mentone. There is a certain savage joy in such a conviction of supreme wretchedness, and Mr. Nibby, while he called himself the most miserable of men, experienced a feeling of satisfaction and was conscious of a pre-eminence among his fellow-creatures. At the same moment Fräulein Rottenhöfer looked forth from the window above, her blond hair dishevelled, her eyes red with weeping, and wrung her hands with a gesture of passionate despair. "Oh, why was I ever born?" she sighed.

To a casual and philosophical observer the disquiet of these two people might have seemed sufficiently perplexing, unless he had remembered that our world lies within ourselves, and not in external circumstance. They happened to gaze from their respective windows at the same time, with this abstracted aspect, unaware of their mutual propinquity and unacquainted with each other's history: the two stories of the hotel might well have represented separate worlds. Fräulein Rottenhöfer had travelled from Bonn to Mentone in the train of that distinguished invalid the Baroness von Merk: Mr. Nibby was a forlorn waif from the New World. He wore at this hour an Oriental dressing-gown of gorgeous hues, but he had laid aside his cigar unsmoked, and his face was sallow with illness as he presented it to the sun's pitiless inspection.

The beauty of the scene on which Fräulein Rottenhöfer looked with that hand-wringing of desperation, and Mr. Nibby below stairs, in the gorgeous dressing-gown, surveyed so dolefully, is unsurpassed on that coast of enchantment, the Riviera—realm of pure skies, purple mountains capped by glittering snow-peaks, the smoky gray of olive-orchards, and gleaming sea acquiring the splendor of melting jewels in the glow of fiery sunsets. The Hôtel des Jasmins was a small establishment of exquisite elegance and the highest reputation: its fame for select privacy, an irreproachable cuisine and lovely surroundings may be said to have gone forth to all lands. The chef was known to be an artist for whose valuable services the proprietors of other mansions had basely plotted and conspired, as the Hôtel des Jasmins was kept by a woman; but, fortunately, their evil endeavors had been thus far frustrated by the devotion of the great man to madame's interests. Countless nobles had appended their names to the glorious record of the office register: Belgian counts, French marquises and German princes had all been sheltered beneath this roof and reflected lustre on the name of the hotel. The suite of rooms through which plain, republican Mr. Nibby now prowled like an unhappy ghost had once been tenanted by an English lord, who had been kind enough to depart this life in the state bed.

"What shall I try next?" quoth Mr. Nibby gloomily, thrusting his hands deep into the pockets of the dressing-gown. Then he opened the sash and leaned one elbow on the window-ledge.

The whole garden sparkled with the morning freshness. Marble steps led down to the green sward; the balustrade was draped in a luxuriant mantle of heliotrope that loaded the air with the fragrance of clustering blossoms; the beds of roses and geranium swept like a wave of color in the direction of those nooks of shrubbery where the fervent heat of noonday was tempered by a canopy of delicate foliage. Mr. Nibby's eye roved languidly over the fountain with its column of silvery spray and gushing spouts formed by the gaping mouths of grotesque heads. Mr. Nibby detested that fountain: its babbling music kept him awake at night. Beyond the garden was a margin of rustling palms and a glimpse of blue Mediterranean sea. If any aspect of Nature could lure forth a man into the balmy beauty of a perfect day, it must be such a vision of loveliness as this one—the garden blooming with a Southern warmth of color and richness of perfume, that margin of palms affording views of the sea—a crystal shield—and on the other side a reach of orange plantation, the boughs powdered with snowy blossoms.

The weak human clay asserted itself instead, and Mr. Nibby merely groaned. He had passed a sleepless night; he was wretchedly ill; and, so far from improving his health by journeying in Europe, as he had hoped to do, he now looked back regretfully to the days when he suffered from mild dyspepsia in his native land. Constant nausea had afflicted the unfortunate gentleman since he came to the Mediterranean shore and took up his residence at the charming Hôtel des Jasmins, where madame made out the most extortionate bills, although he subsisted on the sparsest diet.

"I might be poisoned," soliloquized Mr. Nibby with another groan.

Then his idle glance fell on two persons with a suddenly awakened interest. The chef appeared for a moment at an opening in the shrubbery, and then was to be discerned strolling down a sequestered path in the direction of a kitchen-garden, where he finally paused and became absorbed in the contemplation of various hot-beds. The mighty artist possessed the beauty so largely bestowed by capricious Nature on his class in France and Italy. His bearing was dignified, his features perfect, his form as finely proportioned as that of the classical athlete; a silky black moustache drooped to his firm chin; his eye was large, tranquil and lustrous, reflecting all things and revealing nothing. He wore his linen cap and apron with grace, and his feet were encased in slippers of green carpet.

"He must be the head-cook of whom madame is so proud," murmured Mr. Nibby. "I have half a mind to call him and inquire of him if he could make me some honest gruel of Indian meal, well salted."

The second person was no other than Fräulein Rottenhöfer, her blond hair smoothed and her outward aspect composed.

"Why, that is the very girl I helped on the Cologne boat!" exclaimed Mr. Nibby with reviving animation as he put on his eye-glass.

What a light figure had the Fräulein in a blue muslin gown, with a black velvet ribbon about her throat! How pretty the sunshine rendered those fair tresses, piled high over a cushion on the top of her head, which left the low, broad forehead and round face fully revealed! She walked rapidly toward the hot-beds, where the chef lingered with a sprig of parsley in his hand. That celebrated artist, although absorbed in a professional reverie over certain herbs, became aware of the approach of maidenly charms and doffed his cap.

The Fräulein disliked excessively the task assigned her. She was a gentlewoman by birth, shy, sensitive and proud, now dependent for bread on the whims of that wicked old woman, the baroness. The latter had said on this particular morning, as she sat up in bed to sip her chocolate, looking like a witch, "Fräulein Rottenhöfer, you will have the kindness to present my compliments to the chef of this hotel, and tell him I approve of his hare ragoût. He may serve it more frequently for my déjeuner."

The Fräulein had flushed uneasily, and murmured, "Perhaps Fritz or Margret could do it better."

Whereupon the baroness, who seemed to exist solely for the pleasure of tormenting those dependent on her caprices, had rolled one black eye at the young girl and rejoined, "You will do it personally, and to-day, understand. Tut! doubtless you often gossip with the chef."

The Fräulein winced and compressed her lips. She, a born gentlewoman reduced to distressing poverty, was accused of gossiping with the hotel chef, like any other servant! However, she had watched her opportunity, dreading exceedingly to seek the kitchens, and Fate had sent him out to the hot-beds in order to be waylaid. She made her little speech concerning the ragoût, and the chef laid his hand on his heart, declaring that the lady baroness was too kind in praising his poor efforts. Then, as the Fräulein was about to turn away, a softer expression beamed from his fine, dark eyes, the tones of his voice acquired the caressing intonation of Southern races, and this knight of the copper stew-pan desired to know if mademoiselle herself had a penchant for any particular dish. She was young, pretty and amiable, ready to smile if the baroness would only permit, as she did now while assuring the chef that all his efforts pleased her. She tripped back to the hotel, having accomplished the mission, and met full shock the spectacled glance of Mr. Nibby as he stood in the window, eye-glass on nose and Oriental dressing-gown glowing like the plumage of a tropical bird. The Fräulein blushed, hesitated, walked on a pace, and paused, evidently recognizing him.

"I hope you are better to-day," she said in careful English, then vanished quickly through the door.

Mr. Nibby was profoundly interested. He forgot how he felt for ten minutes at least. This was the very girl he had assisted on the Cologne boat in the autumn. The service rendered was a trifling one: her pocket had been picked coming on board the steamer; she was alone and frightened; evidently the official was sceptical as to her story, when Mr. Nibby stepped in opportunely, paid for another ticket and took the young girl under his own protection to the extent of frowning upon the advances of certain other tourists of a pronounced type. She had explained with simplicity and dignity of manner that she was journeying to Bonn for the purpose of applying to a great lady for the position of companion, and had only just quitted the school where she was educated. Then she had gone ashore at Bonn with shyly-expressed thanks, and Mr. Nibby, good Samaritan by the way, had been swept on by the Rhine to distant Mayence. Here she was again, at Mentone, tripping through that tropical garden with its palms, oranges, and mantling heliotrope, with the sunshine playing over her blond hair and fair face, the blue muslin robe a bright and charming element of color.

The garçon appeared with Mr. Nibby's déjeuner as he turned away from the window.

"Salad? No, I detest the sight and smell of oil," said Mr. Nibby pettishly in response to an inquiry: then he added, in gloomy soliloquy, "I wish there was not such an article as a beefsteak in the world."

The garçon stared at Mr. Nibby sympathetically. He was a chuckle-headed youth in a black coat with tails that threatened to sweep the ground, and a white cravat of stiffest quality and enormous dimensions. It might have wrung the chef's heart to have beheld Mr. Nibby turn over his dainty beefsteak with a fork and sniff at it disdainfully, but he was fortunately spared that spectacle. Mr. Nibby, in his truly alarming state of health, was restricted by his physician to the simplest diet: thus the chef's beefsteak had become the bane of his existence. He was like the needy adventurer who subsisted on pigeons for a month to win a wager, or the prisoner who starved on chocolate. He lost no time in making inquiries about the Fräulein Rottenhöfer, and the sympathetic garçon, although still a fledgling in years and with a down on his upper lip like that on a gosling's back, immediately saw his way clearly to fresh perquisites of office. If Mr. Nibby, occupant of the best suite of rooms in the hotel, was interested in a lady, any stray news concerning her fetched by himself would naturally result in francs. There was an abundance to impart at the outset. Mr. Nibby, kind of heart, left the detested beefsteak to grow cold while he listened, although that sacrifice was not a great one.

The Baroness von Merk was very old and paralytic, and possessed a fearful temper. The sympathetic garçon drew the cork of a wine-bottle, and opined that she was mad. She had been a celebrated court beauty in one of the German principalities, perhaps married with the left hand by the duke, and still retained fantastic caprices as the dregs in her spent cup of pleasure. Her own relatives had been driven away by her evil and malicious tongue. Her servants lived in purgatory, but then they received good wages, the garçon affirmed solemnly as he removed the cover of a potato-dish. What would monsieur think of her slapping the Fräulein with a fan for not reading distinctly or for not retrimming a lace mantle to please such a whimsical mistress? Old Margret, the lady's-maid, was kept awake night after night to watch beside the baroness's couch when she was nervous and feared the ghosts of her own past. Fritz was the gray-haired person in livery, who had served too long to permit his own digestion to be disturbed.

"The women cry, but I do not. I have lived with her forty years," Fritz observed in those kitchen regions where the faults of the great are freely criticised, with a gesture toward his cheeks, in texture like parchment.

When Mr. Nibby heard this sad tale of petty tyranny his sympathies were moved. He had bought a fresh ticket on the Cologne boat which consigned the Fräulein to the tender mercies of the baroness. He began to experience a degree of personal responsibility in the whole matter. How could he help the girl out of her painful position now?

"Dear me!" ejaculated Mr. Nibby, pushing aside the untasted beefsteak, and the garçon subsequently devoured it by stealth, seated on the back stairs with a tray balanced precariously on his knees.

Our invalid continued to say "Dear me!" during his afternoon drive, and on returning to the hotel either the lack of that matutinal beefsteak or interest in the Fräulein Rottenhöfer induced him to announce that he would dine at the table d'hôte. What need to add that the sympathetic garçon placed him beside the Fräulein, who appeared slightly startled at first, and then pleased? When the companion had begged to be spared the ordeal of eating alone at the table d'hôte, the baroness had insisted on compliance: her dame de compagnie always dined at the table d'hôte. Good often results from evil in this world.

Mr. Nibby enjoyed the meal amazingly. The salle-à-manger was decked with flowers, the table linen was snowy white, the plate glittered, and there was as a central ornament a mediæval castle of spun sugar perched on almond rocks, which must have cost the chef much time to design. It was the fête of madame's patron saint, and the church-bells which had resounded in the town since dawn meant also a dinner of unusual elegance at the Hôtel des Jasmins, concluded by champagne of inferior quality, but freely dispensed to all. The saint had brought her very good luck, madame piously observed. Thus the meal was a sort of feast to Mr. Nibby and the Fräulein. Both remembered the Cologne boat, and she required no other incentive than gratitude to prompt inquiry as to her benefactor's health. There are more unfavorable places for growth of mutual confidence than a table d'hôte. Amidst a hum of voices and clatter of dishes, with many lights twinkling before his dazzled eyes, Mr. Nibby became aware that the Fräulein had an aunt living in America, whom she desired to visit, although her ideas of distance were of the vaguest. Poor Fräulein! belonging to that vast army of educated women teeming in every land and needing to coin money out of their accomplishments, she must wait on the whimsical old baroness a while longer before making a journey to distant America.

In turn, she learned that Mr. Nibby had long promised himself the recreation of foreign travel, and had now escaped from active business-life for the realization. Alas! his health had improved in England only to suffer severely on the Continent, especially in the Hôtel des Jasmins.

"Perhaps the climate is too warm for you," she said, looking at him with mild blue eyes.

Thus the banquet concluded. Mr. Nibby was quite animated in manner, while the Fräulein was all the prettier for the additional color in her cheeks induced by a little excitement. The sympathetic garçon with the long coat-tails grinned at a sideboard where he was clashing about knives and forks. Mr. Nibby retired, carrying away the image of his fair neighbor for evening reverie over his cigar, and that night he slept so soundly, without recurrence of his afflicting nausea, that he was disposed to make of madame's saint's day one of most favorable augury for himself.

The Fräulein went up stairs, and read aloud to the baroness. Her thoughts strayed to the good-looking gentleman with a gray moustache, friendly smile and well-kept, white hands who had been so kind to her. At ten o'clock she received an unexpected gift. Lo! on the fête-day the chef had compounded for her a second edifice in the shape of a nougat house stocked with bonbons. She blushed, then laughed like a child.

A month later, the Fräulein again sat reading to the baroness, her thoughts astray and her tone of voice so monotonous that it acted soporifically on her listener. The baroness nodded in her arm-chair, with her pet poodle on her knee. The coquettish cap on her head was grotesquely crumpled, and her false front pushed awry, while the sneer on her pinched features only deepened their habitual expression of ill-nature in repose. The fat poodle blinked and the Fräulein yawned. In the large, gloomy house at Bonn was a florid portrait of the shrivelled old creature before her, there represented in slim youth, in blue velvet, with state jewels clasped about her throat. Outside, the garden still glowed with vivid patches of flowers, but the sky was dull and the piercing mistral swept clouds of dust over the boundary-wall occasionally. Again did the chef stroll down that remote path in the shrubbery, where the boundary of his dominions seemed marked by the forcing-beds of the kitchen-garden.

The Fräulein's eyes sparkled with a sudden determination. She closed her book softly and glanced apprehensively at the slumbering baroness. The poodle winked one eye at her, as if perfectly comprehending the situation, and laid its nose on two little folded paws. Then she slipped noiselessly out of the room, ran down stairs, and met Mr. Nibby in the hall. He looked very ill, and shook his head in response to her inquiry concerning his health. Mr. Nibby's health could scarcely be worse, and yet he lingered at the Hôtel des Jasmins, where he constantly met Fräulein Rottenhöfer. Sympathy is the first requisite of the human heart. Such sympathy as the young German lady had unexpectedly required of the American tourist on the Cologne boat she was striving to return in another fashion.

"I have a thought," she exclaimed with unusual animation of manner as she now encountered the invalid. "Will you be so kind to come in ze pavilion while I talk with ze chef?"

Mr. Nibby, rather puzzled, slid into the pavilion, and the Fräulein paused in the path beyond to accost her unconscious victim. Through the mantling vines Mr. Nibby could witness the smiles this really ingenuous young creature was prepared to lavish on the susceptible chef because already aware of her power. The Fräulein's tongue ran nimbly enough in French. It was now the turn of beefsteak to be praised. Did the baroness like his beefsteak then? the chef inquired, hand on heart, large eyes darting admiring glances, and yet with a wholly inscrutable smile. The Fräulein colored slightly: her gaze sought the ground. Unquestionably, the baroness approved. The dish was always most skilfully cooked, the gravy exquisitely flavored, and the meat fibre possessed the tenderness of game, the Fräulein said. The chef, always with a sprig of parsley twirling between his fingers to assist conversation, confessed modestly that there was skill in his treatment of the prosaic beefsteak.

Mr. Nibby listened, fascinated, and with a dawning suspicion in his mind. What was the Fräulein striving to accomplish? Actually, this daughter of Eve was begging to be instructed in the preparation of the culinary triumph. Perhaps she had never received before such a tribute to her charms as when the chef, rolling his fine eyes languishingly, confessed himself to be wax in her hands, and ready to yield up one of the secrets of his profession without the bribe of gold. The steak need not be the best quality of beef: even a tough and inferior portion would serve. The chef approached nearer his questioner while vouchsafing this explanation, and lowered his voice mysteriously. The Fräulein winced, but stood her ground. Ah, that was much to know, she assented with a bright smile, if one should be required to cook for an invalid. The chef nodded sagely. The steak must be laid in oil for twelve hours, which made it deliciously tender, then removed, dried slightly, and broiled. He never cooked with oil for foreigners, he added with scarcely veiled contempt of tone.

Mr. Nibby groaned in the summer-house. What! the chef's beefsteak was prepared in oil, and he had been born with such an antipathy to the luxury that it made him uncomfortable to sit at table opposite a castor! Could his daily illness be attributed to the simple diet selected in the belief that a beefsteak was the most harmless food for a dyspeptic?

The Fräulein returned to him radiant with success. "I have thought it must be what you eat," she exclaimed.

"How clever women are!" said Mr. Nibby fervently. "You always jump at conclusions, and now I am placed under an everlasting obligation."

"Then I am glad," she answered simply.

Mr. Nibby took her hand and kissed it. "Would you like to visit your aunt in America?" he inquired tenderly.

The mistral blew and the sky was gray. Up in her salon the baroness had awakened, and the poodle on her knee not only winked one eye, but cocked an ear apprehensively.

"Continue the reading: I am not asleep," croaked the old lady.

No response. Then the baroness opened her eyes wide, and they flashed ominously. Never had Fräulein Rottenhöfer dared to quit her seat before. The crash of an overturned chair succeeded the peal of a bell pulled by a tremulous hand, and then there was a stifled scream.

When the Fräulein came up stairs later in guilty haste, she paused to fasten an exquisite rose, gift of Mr. Nibby, in her dress, and the flower rivalled only the fine color of her own cheeks.

The baroness lay on the floor, stiff and rigid, with old Margret wringing her hands helplessly, and old Fritz looking on with solemnity. For the first time on record these two faithful retainers dared to express a candid opinion in her presence. "It's another stroke," said Fritz. "See to what a pass you have brought yourself by temper, mistress!"

"You could not walk alone," moaned Margret.

The baroness, dumb as if her features were frozen in a mask, lay in impotent and awful silence, staring back at them.

That night Mr. Nibby formed two resolutions: one was to ask the Fräulein Rottenhöfer to marry him, and the other never to eat another of the chef's beefsteaks.

In the garden of the Hôtel des Jasmins the flowers still bloom, the palms rustle and the orange trees change their snowy blossoms to balls of gold. Madame has occasion to be dissatisfied with her celebrated artist of the kitchen. He seasons his sauces savagely with excess of fiery condiments; there is no nice discrimination exercised in his vols-au-vent; the treatment of his entrées is commonplace, not to say coarse; he has been known to burn the soup hopelessly. He no longer seeks the garden in a leisure hour of the morning, but may be seen in the twilight standing with his back to the wall, smoking a cheap cigar and staring moodily at the windows once occupied by the pretty Fräulein. He sighs profoundly.

The Baroness von Merk has been carried back to her home on the Rhine by the faithful Fritz, a helpless burden, to be disposed of according to the judgment of others. What the air-castles of the chef might have been, built out of such rainbows as the Fräulein's smiles and praises, must ever remain buried in his own bosom. Ladies have been known to condescend to those of low estate before, especially when such personal beauty as his own manly perfections were in the balance. Did the chef dream of a rival Hôtel des Jasmins, with the Fräulein as attractive landlady, while he managed the whole establishment?

Alas, poor chef! left to sigh in the shadowy garden, while a most blooming bride crosses the Atlantic with fortunate bridegroom Mr. Nibby, miraculously restored in health and spirits. The first-cabin passengers are puzzled at table by the archness with which Mrs. Nibby proffers beefsteak to her husband, and his shudder of aversion as he rejects the dish.

If it is true that one man's meat is another man's poison, may not unconscious Mr. Nibby be deemed quits with the disconsolate chef in bearing away Fräulein Rottenhöfer as his wife?

Virginia W. Johnson.


I believe it is supposed to require a good deal of courage to confess that one has spent the month of August in London; and I will therefore, taking the bull by the horns, plead guilty at the very outset to this dishonorable weakness. I might attempt some ingenious extenuation of it. I might say that my remaining in town had been the most unexpected necessity or the merest inadvertence; I might pretend I liked it—that I had done it, in fact, for the love of the thing; I might claim that you don't really know the charms of London until on one of the dog-days you have imprinted your boot-sole in the slumbering dust of Belgravia, or, gazing along the empty vista of the Drive in Hyde Park, have beheld, for almost the first time in England, a landscape without figures. But little would remain of these specious apologies save the naked fact that I had distinctly failed to retire from the metropolis—either on the first of August with the ladies and children, or on the thirteenth with the members of Parliament, or on the fifteenth when the grouse-shooting began. (I am not sure that I have got my dates right to a day, but these were about the proper opportunities.) I have, in fact, survived the departure of everything genteel, and the four millions of persons who remained behind with me have been witnesses of my shame.

I cannot pretend, on the other hand, that, having remained in town, I have found it a very odious or painful experience. Being a stranger, I have not felt it necessary to incarcerate myself during the day and steal abroad only under cover of the darkness—a line of conduct imposed by public opinion, if I am to trust the social criticism of the weekly papers (which I am far from doing), upon the native residents who allow themselves to be overtaken by the unfashionable season. I have indeed always had a theory that few things could be more pleasant than during the hot weather to have a great city, and a large house within it, quite to one's self. If it were necessary, I could point with some exultation to the fact that I have never come so near as on the present occasion to an opportunity of testing my theory; and I must add that I have now tested it under circumstances which have deprived the experiment of half of its value.

To make it perfect, the summer should be very hot and the house in which you live very cool. You should keep it cool by keeping it dark—just dark enough not to prevent you from reading a charming old book as you lie on the sofa in one of the lighter rooms. Your costume as you lie on the sofa and wander about from chamber to chamber should be of the most imponderable; in fact, you should have on almost no clothes at all. To increase the comfort of your undressedness you must have no fellow-inmates but the servants, who remain below stairs and adapt themselves to the temperature as best they can. They are free, of course, to sit in the cellar. And then you must have several other resources—resources which, if you are an American, you may be pardoned for believing to be most easily secured in the case of your trying your experiment in your native land. The carpets must all have been taken up and the floors covered with straw matting in pale, tender colors. There must be an everlasting gush of the coldest water into a bath big enough for you, if the fancy takes you, to drown yourself in. You must have plenty of peaches and pears, of grapes and melons. You must commit unseen excesses in the consumption of ice-cream. You must sit in the evening on a balcony and, looking up and down the empty street, see here and there in other balconies the gleam of a white robe in the darkness.

These harmless conditions have not been combined in my own metropolitan sojourn, and I have received an impression that in London it would be rather difficult for a person not having the command of a good deal of powerful machinery to find them united. English summer weather is rarely hot enough to make it necessary to darken one's house and disrobe. The present year has indeed in this respect been "exceptional," as any year is, for that matter, that one spends anywhere. But the manners of the people are, to American eyes, a sufficient indication that at the best (or the worst) the highest flights of the thermometer in the British Islands are not particularly startling. People live with closed windows in August, very much as they do in January, and there is to the eye no appreciable difference in the character of their apparel. A "bath" in England, for the most part all the year round, means a little portable tin tub and a sponge. Peaches and pears, grapes and melons, are not a more obvious ornament of the market at mid-summer than at Christmas. This matter of peaches and melons, by the way, offers one of the best examples of that fact to which a foreign commentator on English manners finds himself constantly recurring, and to which he grows at last almost ashamed of alluding—the fact that the beauty and luxury of the country—that elaborate system known and revered all over the world as "English comfort"—is a distinctly limited and restricted, an essentially private, affair. I am not one of those irreverent strangers who talk of English "fruit" as a rather audacious plaisanterie, though I could see very well what was meant a short time since by an anecdote related to me in a tone of contemptuous generalization by a couple of my fellow-countrywomen. They had arrived in London in the dog-days, and, lunching at their hotel, had asked to be served with some fruit. The hotel was of the stateliest pattern, and they were waited upon by a functionary whose grandeur was proportionate. This gentleman bowed and retired, and after a long delay, reappearing, placed before them, with an inimitable gesture, a dish of gooseberries and currants. It appeared upon investigation that these acrid vegetables were the only "fruit" that the establishment could undertake to supply; and it seemed to increase the irony of the situation that the establishment was as near as possible to Buckingham Palace. I say that the heroines of my anecdote seemed disposed to generalize: this was sufficiently the case, I mean, to give me a pretext for assuring them that in Devonshire, in Warwickshire, in Norfolk, in Dorset and in twenty other English counties whose names they had certainly heard, the most beautiful peaches and melons might be seen growing in considerable numbers in the most admirably organized hot-houses in the depths of the most extensive and picturesque properties. My auditors tossed their heads, of course, at the counties, the peaches and melons, the admirable hot-houses and the extensive properties; and indeed at their ascetic hostelry close to Buckingham Palace these reflections were but scantily consoling. But these are the things they have had in mind, the reasonable English people whom in other countries I have heard upholding the superiority of English fruit. I have heard them argue the case most resolutely against Frenchmen and Americans, but, in reality, the contending parties were talking about two very different things. One side was talking about fruit as a luxury, and the other about fruit as a necessity. The Englishman was thinking of the soft-colored, smooth-skinned peaches that he had been invited down into Dorsetshire to eat at eight o'clock in the evening at a brilliantly-lighted table: the American and the Frenchman were thinking of these articles as they importuned you from heaped-up fruit stalls in your daily walk. The difference brings me back to what I referred to as the "private" character of this particular branch of English comfort. A stranger may spend a summer in London and never be reminded of the existence of pears and grapes. Those establishments known in America as fruit-stalls are conspicuous by their absence, and their office is in no appreciable degree supplied by the inns, the restaurants or the clubs. I believe there are peaches of great rotundity to be obtained at Covent Garden market at half a crown apiece, but Covent Garden is hardly on the line of one's daily strolls. The irritated stranger, therefore, sitting down to gooseberries at a "palace" hotel, may be pardoned for unflattering generalizations. He gradually learns, if he remains in England, that the relation of hotels and restaurants to the life of the country is here essentially different from what it is elsewhere. It may be said, generally, that such places, at their best, represent the maximum comfort of the community. The traveller in England must teach himself that they represent the minimum, and he must learn the further lesson that "English comfort"—the comfort which, as I said just now, is known and venerated all over the world—means, strictly, the maximum comfort, the privilege, of a small minority, of the opulent and luxurious class. To make good inns and good restaurants there must be a comfortable bourgeoisie, for people of great fortune are able to do things in a way that makes them independent of a public fund of entertainment.

It is to this public fund of entertainment that the desultory stranger in any country chiefly appeals, especially in summer weather; and as I have implied that there is little encouragement in England to such an appeal, it may appear remarkable that I should not have found London, at this season, at least as uncongenial as orthodoxy pronounces it. But one's liking for London—a stranger's liking at least—is at the best an anomalous and illogical sentiment, of which he may feel it hardly more difficult to give a categorical account at one time than at another. I am far from meaning by this that there are not in this mighty metropolis a thousand sources of interest, entertainment and delight: what I mean is, that for one reason and another, with all its social resources, the place lies heavy on the foreign consciousness. It seems grim and dusty, fierce and unbeautiful. And yet the foreign consciousness accepts it at least with a kind of grudging satisfaction, and finds something warm and comfortable, something that if removed would be greatly missed, in its heavy pressure. It must be admitted, however, that, granting that every one is out of town, your choice of pastimes is not embarrassing. If it has been your fortune to spend a certain amount of time in foreign cities, London will seem to you but slenderly provided with innocent diversions. This, indeed, brings us back simply to that question of the absence of a "public fund" of amusement to which reference was just now made. You must give up the idea of going to sit somewhere in the open air, to eat an ice and listen to a band of music. You will find neither the seat, the ice nor the band; but, on the other hand, faithful to your profession of observant foreigner, you may supply the place of these delights by a little private meditation upon the deep-lying causes of the English indifference to them. In such reflections nothing is idle—every grain of testimony counts; and one need therefore not be accused of jumping too suddenly from small things to great if one traces a connection between the absence of ices and music and the aristocratic constitution of English society. This aristocratic constitution of English society is the great and ever-present fact to the mind of a stranger: there is hardly a detail of English life that does not appear in some degree to point to it. It is really only in a country in which a good deal of democratic feeling prevails that people of "refinement," as we say in America, will be willing to sit at little round tables, on a pavement or a gravel-walk, at the door of a café. The upper classes are too genteel, and the lower classes are too miserable. One must hasten to add too, in justice, that the upper classes are, as a general thing, quite too well furnished with entertainments of their own: they have those special resources which I mentioned a while since. They are always rich, and are naturally independent of communistic pleasures. If you can sit on a terrace in a high-walled garden and have your café noir handed to you in Pompadour cups by servants in powder and plush, you have hardly a decent pretext for going to a public-house. In France and Italy, in Germany and Spain, the count and countess will sally forth and encamp for the evening under a row of colored lamps upon the paving-stones, but it is ten to one that the count and countess live on a single floor up several pairs of stairs. They are, however, I think, not appreciably affected by considerations which operate potently in England. An Englishman who should propose to sit down at a café-door would find himself remembering that he is exposing himself to the danger of meeting his social inferiors. The danger is great, because his social inferiors are so numerous; and I suspect that if we could look straight into the English consciousness we should be interested to find how serious a danger it appears. It is not of the fear of contact with the great herd of one's unknown fellow-citizens that I speak: it is of the possibility of meeting individuals with whom in the business of life one has had some sort of formal relations—one's grocer, one's bootmaker, one's apothecary, even one's solicitor. To an American, a Frenchman, an Italian, there is of necessity nothing alarming in such an incident: there is at the worst a way of taking it easily. But as it looms up before an Englishman it has the power of making him extremely uncomfortable; and, combined with a corresponding anxiety on the part of the inferior himself, this prospective discomfort operates as a chronically deterrent force. These, however, are mysteries which I should not have allowed myself to deal with so parenthetically. I have ventured to do so because there is a very familiar illustration of the phenomenon I speak of. It may be found in the usual demeanor of English servants. If you "meet" an English servant—that is, if you encounter him at a moment when he is not literally executing an order for you—if you are left in a room with him, if you pass him in the hall, if you are confronted with him in the portico, you perceive that his effort is immediately to spare you a possibly offensive realization of his presence. He has been taught that at such times he is uncomfortable to you—that you don't, mentally as it were, know what to do with him. His place in the universe is to answer your bell, and from your point of view he should only exist by intermission. He has been trained to adapt himself to this point of view, and he does so with remarkable success. He not only rigidly abstains from bidding you good-morning, but he abstains equally from responding to the good-morning which in a moment of culpable inconsistency you may have offered him. A couple of months since, paying a visit to a friend in the country, I drove to the door with a gentleman whom I had met at the station, and who was engaged in the same pleasant errand as myself. The butler who admitted us stood motionless and inarticulate as we crossed the threshold, with his eyes, in the manner of butlers, fixed upon our boots. He was a very admirable servant, and having, in the course of twenty-four hours, taken the measure of this fact, I on the following day called my companion's attention to it. My companion was an Englishman, but he was young and perhaps foolishly sentimental. "Oh yes, he's an excellent servant," he said, "but he might give one a faint sign of recognition when one arrives."—"You had seen him, then," I asked, "before?"—"I have stayed in the house half a dozen times, and half a dozen times on departing I have given him the sidelong tip; yet whenever I arrive he gives me a stony stare, as if I were a perfect stranger." But the stony stare, for butlers, is not simply the English custom: I think it may be said that it is the English ideal.

I have wandered very far from the potential little tables for ices in—where shall I say?—in Oxford street; but, after all, there is no reason why our imagination should hover about them. I am afraid they would not be very pleasant. In such matters everything hangs together, and I am afraid that the customs of the Boulevard des Italiens and the Piazza Colonna would not harmonize with the scenery of the great London thoroughfare. A gin-palace right and left and a detachment of the London rabble in an admiring semicircle,—these, I confess, strike me as some of the more obvious features of the affair. At this time, however, one's social studies must, at the least, be studies of low life, for wherever you may go for a stroll or to spend your summer afternoon the unfashionable side of things is uppermost. There is no one in the parks save the rough characters who are lying on their faces in the sheep-polluted grass. These people are always tolerably numerous in the Green Park, through which I frequently pass, and I never fail to drop a wondering glance upon them. But your wonder will go far if it begins to bestir itself on behalf of weary British tramps. You see among them some magnificent specimens of weariness. Their velveteen legs and their colossal high-lows, their purple necks and car-tips, their knotted sticks and little greasy hats, make them look like stage villains in a realistic melodrama. I may do them great injustice, but I always assume that they have had a taste of penal servitude—that they have paid the penalty of stamping on some one with those huge square heels that are turned up to the summer sky. But, actually, they are innocent enough, for they are sleeping as peacefully as the most accomplished philanthropist, and it is their look of having walked over half England, and of being confoundedly hungry and thirsty, that constitutes their romantic attractiveness. These six feet of brown grass are their present sufficiency, but how long will they sleep, whither will they go next, and whence did they come last? You permit yourself to wish that they might sleep for ever and go nowhere else at all.

The month of August is so unfashionable in London that going a few days since to Greenwich, that famous resort, I found it possible to get but half a dinner. The hotel (where you are supposed to be able to obtain one of the best dinners in England) had put out its stoves and locked up its pantry. But for this discovery I should have mentioned the little expedition to Greenwich as a charming relief to the monotony of a London August. Greenwich and Richmond are, classically, the two suburban dining-places. I don't know how it may be at this time with Richmond, but the Greenwich incident brings me back (I hope not once too often) to the element of what has lately been called "particularism" in English pleasures. It was in obedience to a perfectly logical argument that the Greenwich hotel had, as I say, locked up its pantry. All genteel people leave London after the first week in August, ergo those who remain behind are not genteel, and cannot therefore rise to the conception of a "fish dinner." Why, then, should we have anything ready? I had other impressions, fortunately, of this interesting suburb, and I hasten to declare that during the genteel period the dinner at Greenwich is the best of all dinners. It begins with fish and it continues with fish: what it ends with—except songs and speeches and affectionate partings—I hesitate to affirm. It is a kind of mermaid reversed; for I do know, in a vague way, that the tail of the creature is elaborately and interminably fleshy. If it were not grossly indiscreet I should risk an allusion to the particular banquet which was the occasion of my becoming acquainted with the Greenwich cuisine. I should say that it is very pleasant to sit in a company of clever and distinguished men before the large windows that look out upon the broad brown Thames. The ships swim by as if they were part of the entertainment and put down in the bill: the afternoon light fades ever so slowly. We eat all the fish of the sea, and wash them down with liquids that bear no resemblance to salt water. We partake of any number of those sauces with which, according to the French adage, one could dine upon one's grandmother. To speak of the particular merits of my companions would indeed be indiscreet, but there is nothing indelicate in expressing a high appreciation of the manly frankness and robustness of English conviviality. The stranger—the American at least—who finds himself in the company of a number of Englishmen assembled for a convivial purpose becomes conscious of a certain indefinable and delectable something which, for want of a better name, he will call their superior richness of temperament. He takes note of the liberal share of the individual in the magnificent temperament of the race. This seems to him one of the finest things in the world, and his satisfaction will take a keener edge from such an incident as the single one I may permit myself to mention. It was one of those little incidents which can occur only in an old society—a society in which every one that a newcomer meets strikes him as having in some degree or other a sort of historic identity, being connected with some one or something that he has heard of. If they are not the rose, they have lived more or less near it. There is an old English song-writer whom we all know and admire—whose songs are sung wherever the language is spoken. Of course, according to the law I just hinted at, one of the gentlemen sitting opposite must be his great-grandson. After dinner there are songs, and the gentleman trolls out one of his ancestral ditties with the most charming voice and the most finished art.

I have still other memories of Greenwich, where there is a charming old park, on a summit of one of whose grassy undulations the famous observatory is perched. To do the thing completely, you must take passage upon one of the little grimy sixpenny steamers that ply upon the Thames, perform the journey by water, and then, disembarking, take a stroll in the park to get up an appetite for dinner. I find an irresistible charm in any sort of river-navigation, but I am rather at a loss as to how to speak of the little voyage from Westminster Bridge to Greenwich. It is in truth the most prosaic possible form of being afloat, and to be recommended rather to the inquiring than to the fastidious mind. It initiates you into the duskiness, the blackness, the crowdedness, the intensely commercial character of London. Few European cities have a finer river than the Thames, but none certainly has expended more ingenuity in producing an ugly river-front. For miles and miles you see nothing but the sooty backs of warehouses, or perhaps they are the sooty fronts: in these rigidly-unfeatured edifices it is impossible to distinguish. They stand massed together on the banks of the wide, turbid stream, which is fortunately of too opaque a quality to reflect their hideousness. A damp-looking, dirty blackness is the universal tone. The river is almost black, and is covered with black barges: above the black housetops, from among the far-stretching docks and basins, rises a dusky wilderness of masts. The little puffing steamer is dingy and begrimed: it belches a sable cloud that keeps you company as you go. In this carboniferous shower your companions, who belong chiefly, indeed, to the less brilliant classes, assume an harmonious dinginess; and the whole picture, glazed over with the glutinous London mist, becomes a masterpiece of bituminous-looking color. But it is very impressive in spite of its want of lightness and brightness, and in its own sombre fashion it is extremely picturesque. Like so many of the aspects of English civilization that are untouched by elegance or grace, it has the merit of being serious. Viewed in this intellectual light, the polluted river, the sprawling barges, the dead-faced warehouses, the dreary people, the atmospheric impurities, become richly suggestive. It sounds rather absurd to say so, but all this sordid detail reminds me of nothing less than the wealth and power of the British empire at large; so that a kind of metaphysical picturesqueness hovers over the scene, and supplies what may be literally wanting. I don't exactly understand the association, but I know that when I look off to the left at the East India Docks, or pass under the dark, hugely-piled bridges, where the railway trains and the human processions are for ever moving, I feel a kind of imaginative thrill. The tremendous piers of the bridges, in especial, seem the very pillars of the British empire.

It is doubtless owing to this habit of obtrusive reverie that the sentimental tourist thinks it very fine to see the Greenwich Observatory lifting its two modest little brick towers. The sight of this useful edifice gave me an amount of pleasure which may at first seem unreasonable. The reason was, simply, that I used to see it as a child in woodcuts in school geographies, and in the corners of large maps which had a glazed, sallow surface, and which were suspended in unexpected places, in dark halls and behind doors. The maps were hung so high that my eyes could reach only to the lower corners, and these corners usually contained a print of a strange-looking house standing among trees upon a grassy bank that swept down before it with the most engaging steepness. I used always to think that it must be an ineffable joy to run straight down that bank. Close at hand was usually something printed about something being at such and such a number of degrees "east of Greenwich." Why east of Greenwich? The vague wonder that the childish mind felt on this point gave the place a mysterious importance, and seemed to put it into relation with the difficult and fascinating parts of geography—the countries of fantastic outline and the lonely-looking pages of the atlas. Yet there it stood the other day, the spot from which longitude is calculated; there was the plain little façade with the old-fashioned cupolas; there was the bank on which it would be so delightful not to be able to stop running. It made me feel terribly old to find that I did not forthwith proceed to taste of this delight. There are indeed a great many steep banks in Greenwich Park, which tumbles up and down in the most picturesque fashion. It is a charming place, rather shabby and footworn, as befits a strictly popular resort, but with a character all its own. It is filled with magnificent dwarfish chestnut trees, planted in long, convergent avenues, with trunks of extraordinary girth and limbs that fling a dusky shadow far over the grass; there are plenty of benches, and there are deer as tame as sleepy children; and from the tops of the bosky hillocks there are views of the widening Thames, and the moving ships, and the two classic inns by the waterside, and the great pompous buildings of the old hospital, which have been despoiled of their ancient pensioners and converted into a kind of naval academy.

Taking note of all this, I arrived at a far-away angle in the wall of the park, where a little postern door stood ajar. I pushed the door open, and found myself, by a picturesque transition, upon Blackheath Common. One had often heard of Blackheath: well, here it was—a great green, breezy place, where various lads in corduroys were playing cricket. I always like an English common: it may be curtailed and cockneyfied, as this one was—which had lamp-posts stuck about on its turf and a fresh-painted banister all around—but it is sure to be one of the places that remind you vividly that you are in England. Even if the turf is too much trodden, there is, to foreign eyes, an English greenness about it, and there is something peculiarly insular in the way the high-piled, weather-bearing clouds hang over it and drizzle down their gray light. Still further to identify this spot, here was the British soldier emerging from two or three of the roads, with his cap upon his ear, his white gloves in one hand and his foppish little cane in the other. He wore the uniform of the artillery, and I asked him where he had come from. I learned that he had walked over from Woolwich, and that this feat might be accomplished in half an hour. Inspired again by vague associations, I proceeded to accomplish its equivalent. I bent my steps to Woolwich, a place which I knew, in a general way, to be a nursery of British valor. At the end of my half hour I emerged upon another common, where local color was still more intense. The scene was very entertaining. The open grassy expanse was immense, and the evening being beautiful it was dotted with strolling soldiers and townsfolk. There were half a dozen cricket-matches: the soldiers were playing against the lads in corduroys. At one end of this peaceful campus martius, which stretches over a hilltop, rises an interminable façade—one of the fronts of the artillery barracks. It has a very honorable air, and more windows and doors, I imagine, than any building in Britain. There is a great clean parade before it, and there are many sentinels pacing in front of neatly-kept places of ingress to officers' quarters. Everything that looks out upon it is military—the distinguished college (where the French prince imperial lately studied the art of war) on one side; a sort of model camp—a collection of the tidiest plank huts—on the other; a hospital, on a well-ventilated site, at the remoter end. And then in the town below there are a great many more military matters—barracks on an immense scale; a dock-yard that presents an interminable dead wall to the street; an arsenal which the gatekeeper (who refused to admit me) declared to be "five miles" in circumference; and, lastly, grogshops enough to inflame the most craven spirit. These latter institutions I glanced at on my way to the railway-station at the bottom of the hill; but before departing I had spent half an hour in strolling about the common in vague consciousness of certain emotions that are called into play (I speak but for myself) by almost any glimpse of the imperial machinery of this great country. The glimpse may be of the slightest: it stirs a peculiar sentiment. I know not what to call this sentiment unless it be simply an admiration for the greatness of England. The greatness of England: that is a very pregnant phrase, but I am not using it analytically. I use it only as it sounds in the imagination of any American who really enjoys the enjoyable parts of this head-spring of his patriotism. I mean the great part that England has played in history, the great space she has occupied, her tremendous might, her far-stretching sway. That these clumsily-general ideas should be suggested by the sight of some infinitesimal fraction of the English administrative system may seem to indicate a too hysterical cast of fancy; but if so, I must plead guilty to the weakness. Why should a sentry-box more or less set one thinking of the glory of this little island, which has manufactured the means of so vast a dominion? This is more than I can say; and all I shall attempt to say is, that in the difficult days that are now elapsing a sympathetic stranger finds his meditations singularly quickened. It is the picturesque element in English history that he has chiefly cared for, and he finds himself wondering whether the picturesque epoch is completely closed. It is a moment when all the nations of Europe seem to be doing something, and he waits to see what England, who has done so much, will do. He has been meeting of late a good many of his country-people—Americans who live on the Continent and pretend to speak with assurance of continental ways of feeling. These people have been passing through London, and many of them are in that irritated condition of mind which appears to be the portion of the American sojourner in the British metropolis when he is not given up to the delights of the historic sentiment. They have affirmed with emphasis that the continental nations have ceased to care a straw for what England thinks; that her traditional prestige is completely extinct; that General Ignatieff twisted Lord Salisbury round his finger; and that the affairs of Europe will be settled quite independently of the power whose capital is on the Thames. England will do nothing, will risk nothing: there is no cause bad enough for her not to find a selfish interest in it—there is no cause good enough for her to fight about it. Poor old England is exploded: it is about time she should haul in her nets. To all this the sympathetic stranger replies that, in the first place, he does not believe a word of it; and, in the second place, he does not care a fig for it—care, that is, what the continental nations think. If the greatness of England were really waning, it would be to him as a personal grief; and as he strolls about the breezy common at Woolwich, with all those mementoes of British dominion around him, he is quite too softly exhilarated to admit discomposure.

He wishes, nevertheless, as I said before, that England would do something—something striking and powerful and picturesque. He asks himself what she can do, and he remembers that that greatness of England which he so much admires was formerly much exemplified in her "taking" something. Can't she "take" something now? There is the Spectator, who wants her to occupy Egypt: can't she occupy Egypt? The Spectator considers this her moral duty—inquires even whether she has a right not to bestow the blessings of her beneficent rule upon the down-trodden Fellaheen. I found myself in company with a very intelligent young Frenchman a day or two after this eloquent plea for a partial annexation of the Nile had appeared in the most ingenious of journals. Some allusion was made to it, and my companion proceeded to pronounce it a masterpiece of British hypocrisy. I don't know how powerful a defence I made of it, but while I read it I certainly had been carried away by it. I recalled it while I pursued my contemplations, but I recalled at the same time that sadly prosaic speech of Mr. Gladstone's to which it had been a reply. Mr. Gladstone had said that England had much more urgent duties than the occupation of Egypt: she had to attend to the great questions of—What were the great questions? Those of local taxation and the liquor-laws. Local taxation and the liquor-laws! The phrase, to my ears, just then made a painful discord. These were not the things I had been thinking of: it was not as she should bend anxiously over these doubtless interesting subjects that the sympathetic stranger would seem to see England in his favorite posture—that, as Macaulay says, of hurling defiance at her foes. Of course, Mr. Gladstone was probably right, but Mr. Gladstone was not a sympathetic stranger.

H. James, Jr.



Sven Duva's sire a sergeant was, with many winters white:
In Eighty-eight, though past his prime, he went into the fight,
And after living on his land he reared him fruit and corn,
While children nine around him grew, and Sven was youngest born.
None knows if Duva's father was with sense enough endowed
To still keep some part for himself, and share with such a crowd;
But it must be unto the eight far more than right did fall,
For scarcely to the latest born fell any share at all.
Yet, none the less, young Sven grew up broad-shouldered, strong of limb:
He hewed the tree and ploughed the glebe, for toil was play to him.
More mild than many a wiser man, more prompt he hied along,
And turned his hand to anything, but everything turned wrong.
"In God's name, witless son of mine, what shall become of thee?"
So oft the white-haired sergeant cried in his perplexity,
That 'neath the burden of the tune Sven's patience fell to earth,
And weighed he, far as in him lay, his own degree of worth.
So, when upon a certain day the sergeant raised again
The burden of the tiresome tune, "What wilt thou be, O Sven?"
The old man scarce believed his ears when, all unwontedly,
Sven's massive jaws wide opened with, "A soldier I will be!"
Then loud the sergeant laughed in scorn, and answered mockingly,
"What! thou wouldst bear a rifle?—thou, a booby! Shame on thee!"
"Why," said the boy, "here 'neath my hands unhandy works each thing:
Less handiness may serve to die for country and for king."
Old Duva stood a while amazed, then went in grieving mood,
And pack on back Sven forth did fare to where the barracks stood.
His stature fine, his sturdy height, all lesser needs o'erweighed,
And one in Dunker's company young Sven was quickly made.
But when was need that he should learn the drill and carriage meet,
God wot it was a sight to see how chance did guide his feet:
The corporal laughed aloud and cried, and cried and laughed again,
But still unchanged did his recruit in frown and fun remain.
Yet tireless was he, certainly, if ever mortal yet:
He marched and stamped that earth did shake, and laid the dust with sweat;
But at the word to change or move he missed the meaning quite:
When "Left face!" called the corporal, Sven's face looked toward the right.
Now he was taught to order arms, and arms to shoulder too,
To fix his bayonet, and present; and all, it seemed, he knew,
But at the "Order" usually he fixed his bayonet,
And at "Present" as gracefully his gun his shoulder met.
And so it came Sven Duva's drill was far and wide renowned:
'Midst all—commander, captains, men—the good jest passed around;
But Sven still kept his quiet way—was patient as before,
And always hoped for better times. And so broke out the war.
Now 'midst his comrades question rose, since they their land must shield,
If Sven were sane enough to go with them unto the field.
He let them talk, stood calmly by, and said in coolest tone,
"If with the ranks I cannot go, why I can go alone."
They let him keep his soldier arms, nor put his hands away,
For he was servant in the halt and soldier in the fray;
But board or sword, 'twas one with him: his cool way still he had,
And none might call him coward, though betimes they called him mad.
Once Sandels was in full retreat, pushed back by Russian ranks,
And yielding step by step along a river's reedy banks:
Ahead, a foot-bridge crossed the stream upon the army's way,
Where—scarcely twenty men they were—a little outpost lay.
Sent but to mend the broken road, when all the toil was o'er
At rest they lay at distance far from noises of the war:
A grange near hand they made their camp, nor fared they on its least,
And Sven—for he was of the band—did serve them at the feast.
But soon a change came on them there, for down a slope hard by
Spurred Sandels' aide fast hurrying, and rose his sudden cry:
"To arms! to arms! for God's good sake! and be the bridge your care,
For word is brought a hostile force will cross the river there.
"And, sir," said he to him who led the guard, "if yet you can,
Tear quickly down the bridge, or fight till falls the latest man.
'Tis ruin if the Russian can assail us in the rear;
And fear ye not, for help is by: the general hurries here."
So sped he back, but to the bridge scarce reached the little band
When high a Russian platoon rose upon the shore beyond.
It wider grows, it thicker grows; a volley blazes wide;
Beneath the blast nigh half the band are dying or have died.
A fear runs through the little band; a longer stay is vain;
Again a thundering volley roars, and only five remain.
Then all obeyed the swift command to shoulder arms, retreat:
Sven Duva only missed the word, and fixed his bayonet.
Still more his turning to retreat th' old look of bungling wore,
For, far from going with the rest, upon the bridge he bore;
And there he stood, broad-shouldered, stiff, with his old coolness still,
Prepared to teach to whomsoe'er the best points of his drill.
Nor long he waited ere was need he should his tactics show,
For in a moment all the bridge was freighted with the foe:
Fast on they pressed, man after man, but each who came was met
And tumbled bleeding to the earth by Sven's good bayonet.
To push this giant down was more than single arm could do,
And still his nearest foe a shield from shots of others grew:
The quicker pressed the pushing foe, the more his hope was foiled,
'Till Sandels with his host appeared, and saw how Duva toiled.
"Well done!" the chieftain cried, "well done! my bravest soldier thou!
Let not a devil pass the bridge: hold out a moment now.
Yon brave man be a soldier called, and so a Finn should fight.
Come, help him well, for well we owe our safety to his might."
The foe soon found th' attack was foiled, and without long delay
The Russian forces wheeled around and slowly moved away.
The chief, dismounting, sought the stream when all the din was o'er,
And asked for him who held the bridge and stayed the Russian war.
They pointed to Sven Duva then: his war was overfought;
Yea, manlike he had warred, and now the battle-hour was not.
It seemed that he had lain to rest what time the sport was done—
Well, scarce more quiet than of old, but much more pale and wan.
Above the fallen Sandels bent, the features well to trace—
No stranger features to the chief: it was a well-known face.
Beneath Sven's heart where he was laid the green grass gleamed with red:
A ball had pierced the willing heart, and he was of the dead.
"That bullet knew to take effect, we must confess who see,"
So simply spoke the general. "It knew much more than we:
It let alone his forehead, for it was his weakest part:
It entered at a nobler spot—into a faithful heart."
Those words were bruited far and wide throughout the general host,
And unto each one everywhere the general's words seemed just;
"For surely unto Duva brains were scant in measure doled,
But, though his head was rather bad, his heart was good as gold."

C. Rosell.



The Hemlock Farm was awake to its farthest worm-eaten old fence. Never since its trees grew or its grass was green had such a breath and stir of delight swept through them. The low October sun reddened the stubble-field and thrust lances of light through the darkening boles; a string band, hidden somewhere, as evening fell sent long wafts of music through meadow and woods; everywhere was the sound of children's voices—in the trees, in the hay-mow, down in the old-fashioned rose-garden, up in the dusty garrets. Boys and girls of every shape and size, from pale, gray-eyed midges to big, beefy hobbledehoys, beset the captain at every turn. With his one arm and his uniform, and his gusty delight in themselves, and the background of this marvellous old farm and nut trees, he was a hero belonging to the family of Signor Blitz or Kriss-Kringle. In fact, this feast of feasts given by Miss Swendon yet lingers in the memory of its guests alongside of the enchanted garden of figs.

The feast had grown out of a word. Miss Swendon had talked of the nuts going to waste, and Mrs. Wilde of the hundreds of children she knew "who fancied nuts grew on a fruit-stand." Jane's face began to kindle. "Let us all go nutting with them," she said.

So it easily came to pass—with tremendous exertions, however, on the part of Judge Rhodes and the captain, whose ideas, vague and vast, of the necessary amount of cake and ice-cream doubled with each day.

"Our fear in Virginia always used to be that we should not have enough," said the judge in solemn consultation.

"When I was a boy I never did have enough," rejoined the captain.

The Twiss and Nichols children were put into their Sunday finery and turned out, their jealous mothers watching how the city children treated them, Betty's face red with delight as she announced to Jane that they were "paler and more delicate than any of 'em, and much better-looking." Buff and his father grumbled loudly how they "weren't goin' to let one of dem young debbils inter de stable;" but before the day was over even gray old Dave was at the top of every nut tree, shouting louder than any boy of ten. As for Jane, she was everywhere: she climbed trees and filled all the pockets, told no end of stories, laughed at the least jokes, and wiped away a hundred sobbing miseries.

"I did not know you were excitable," said Mrs. Wilde, meeting her suddenly with pink cheeks and shining eyes on her way to her father.

"I don't know. I never played with young people before. Did you ever know such a happy day?"

Mr. Van Ness came out in the afternoon, and stood in odd corners beaming down on the little folk. But she passed him without seeing him, as she might the bronze Buddha shining in the hall.

"Do you really think the children are having a good time, father?" hanging on his arm. "Have you been happy all day? Every minute?"

As the twilight deepened the moon came out yellow and round; a few Chinese lanterns were hung in the mossy crannies and projections of the old house; the carriages began to drive away with the happy children, who all came to say good-bye and cling about her with that wild fervor which children give to a new friend. Jane might be cold and slow with grown people, but she hugged these little folks as if she were mother to all of them, and ran to hug them again more closely, and could not keep the joyous tears down in her eyes as their soft kisses rained on her. Some of their mothers and friends had come to thank the beautiful young heiress for giving their children such a happy day, and they stayed, wandering about the queer old house and the illuminated grounds: they were the very people whose formal calls Jane had forgotten to return. But she did not think of that: she only saw that they were quiet, friendly folk, and that her father's face was glowing with hospitality and content. The band struck up a waltz, and some of the pretty girls began to dance on the grass. Jane stood apart watching them thoughtfully: her hands were folded together. This couple who floated past her now—surely they were lovers. What a magnificent young fellow he was! She caught the meaning of his eyes bent on the sweet fair face. She knew that little girl would be the best wife for him in the world. She was certain that she loved him dearly.

The yellow October twilight lingered warmly; even the cold moon glowed in the colored haze; the darkening woods, the shadowy house on the hill, the laughing dancers, the broad river at the foot of the slope, were softened into the mellow atmosphere of a dream. The music was faint, a single fine harmony often repeated.

The grave girl with the arched white throat who stood attentive and silent under a tree, a wolf-hound beside her, her gown of some soft creamy hue belted about her waist and falling in heavy silken folds, was to the visitors the most noticeable point in the picture. Mr. Van Ness, a few yards away, waited, hoping she would come to him. But Jane saw only the sky and the running water and the lovers who passed her by. "There are persons," said Mr. Van Ness suavely to the judge, "who are like children or animals. No intellectual poise. Good weather or a little amusement throws them completely off their balance."

The dog, which Jane held by the collar, began to pull and bark joyfully. There was a tall dark figure coming toward the group near her father. Jane trembled more than the dog.

"No, you must not bring him to us, Bruno: he doesn't wish to come."

He did not come. She could hear a word now and then. Everybody was hurrying to greet him. How had he been able to leave his post? Would this new platform save the country? And what would the Syndicate do in view of this last complication? She knew he was the leader of the Syndicate. Great leaders and the Syndicate and the country,—all these things were in company.

She crept back out of sight in the bushes. Bruno broke loose and ran toward him. She went down to the river.

In a moment Bruno came dashing back, crunching through the bushes. There was a steady step on the grass.

"Are you here, Miss Swendon?"


Any of the finical little ladies yonder, had they been in her place, would have met this lover who gave no sign of love with all the self-respect and dignity of womanhood. Not unwooed would they be won, yet every resentful word or tear that drove him back would have been alluring and maddening. Honest Jane went straight to him and gave him her hand. She could not keep the hot color from her face or the water from her eyes. She had told him once that she loved him. With her, done was done. Death itself, coming between, would not give her love back again.

Mr. Neckart took the frank hand and let it fall. "I came to you for this one evening," he said, "before—before I go. One evening surely can import nothing. It can make no difference to you."

Mr. Neckart was a fluent speaker in public: he had been used to talk to Jane by the hour with the lazy freedom of thinking aloud. Now, arguing perhaps against himself, he was awkward and stammered. He did not know what she answered, or if she answered at all.

They both fell into silence. For months Neckart had looked forward to this supreme moment of parting. He must see her once more. But she should not have a glimpse of his starved soul. He would act with perfect honorable propriety. A few friendly words, one look to carry with him until death,—that was all. He did not remember now that it was a supreme moment: it was only a deliciously happy one. What rare fine shades of meaning came out on her face each minute! The absurd downright sincerity of the girl too! Surely all these men must be mad with love of her! Where had she discovered that wonder of a dress? Did other women ever wear such garments? his eyes following the soft slopes.

As for the young woman in the creamy robe, she was filled with a great content. She did not once think of the actual insanity which had its hold upon him. She did not think of her dying father, or of Jane Swendon's crime, or of Jane Swendon at all. All her real life had dropped out of her memory. There was left the warm air and the happy day and the music, and this one living being beside her. His hand rested on the bough of an apple tree: she could see on his palm a peculiar red mark, a birth-mark, which she had often watched darken or fade. She never thought of Neckart without remembering it. But why she should settle into a great content at the sight of this mark, which was in no wise a beautiful or desirable thing, is not for us to say. It is certain that as soon as she saw it her hold on life became quite secure, and the world righted itself instantly.

The music deepened, it filled the night; warm air stirred all the trees; a robin chirped in its nest overhead. The lovers whom Jane had watched waltzed past them. Neckart and Jane looked after them. Then they turned to each other. After all, they were young: life that night throbbed high as it had never done before.

"Come with me," he said, and put his arm about her waist.

He had danced when he was a boy, and had since seen a thousand women waltz: it was to him nothing but music and a pleasant motion. But no boy or man had ever danced with Jane before or touched her. It was to her her wedding-day.

It lasted but for a moment. The music stopped and left them standing under the pines, the spicy smell strong in the air. When Neckart removed his hand he saw how bloodless and grave her face was.

"I ought not to have asked you to dance, Jane. But it will be something for me to remember as long as I live. And men are selfish."

"You do not mean to leave me—now?"

"My God! I don't know!"

In the shadow of the pines he could see the white face upturned to his. He took it between his hands. Why should he not take her to his breast and dare his fate? Nothing came between them but that shadow of honor.

He would obey it.

She would forget him: women were shallower than men. They always forgot. But for him there was only intolerable solitude to the end. He would meet it, although he had come back weakly to the forbidden fruit. He gloried in the consciousness that he was a most heroic martyr as he stooped and kissed her mouth again and again.

"Neckart!" called the captain.—"Somebody find Bruce. He has not a minute to spare."

Neckart released her. "I must make this train," he said. "I must go back to the office. You know that I go on the steamer that sails to-morrow."

Trains? Steamers? With these kisses on his lips?

"What line do you cross in, Bruce?" The captain had hurried down with the other men. "Where do you go first?" as they walked to the house.

"To France, and then to the East," buttoning his coat nervously, without a glance toward the stunned girl beside him.

"Be back in the spring, Mr. Neckart?" said a lisping young lady.

"Not for years. At least, that is my present intention."

The warmth, the happy day, music, love that had filled all earth and heaven but now, were gone. In their place the gaslight, trains, conventional talk of duty!

"Neckart"—she heard a whisper behind her—"goes to Russia and Turkey on secret business for the government."

The kindly old judge, seeing Jane's face, quietly gave her a chair and sheltered her from notice. If Neckart had waited on this girl, he was an infernal scoundrel, no matter what his political rank. He knew she was as good as betrothed to Van Ness.

Jane watched all these brilliant women flutter around Neckart, giving him messages to their friends abroad. His cloak was thrown loosely back from his broad shoulders: he bent to listen to them. She knew nothing of this world of theirs. She was like a poor limp rag of humanity, blown aside into a corner. She had her fantastic passion: all the world besides was orderly, moved in the grooves of common sense and duty.

Mr. Neckart looked at his watch: "I must really go now." He shook hands with Mrs. Wilde, giving a swift glance to the corner where Jane sat. Waring and his attendant young ladies closed in on him with more last words and purling laughter. He made his way through them.

"Good-bye! good-bye!" cried the captain, wringing his hand. "God bless you, Bruce! What is it? Jane? Oh, I'll make your adieux to her. You'll miss your train."

But he had reached her at last, and took her hand in his, all the world looking on: "Good-bye, Miss Swendon."

She could not say a word. They all followed him out, one pretty little girl taking off her slipper to throw after him. But Jane sat alone in the deserted room, looking at the door through which the heavy cloaked figure had disappeared.


Jane was roused by a wild shriek from without. She thought at first it was an animal in an agony of pain or rage. The wind had closed the door, and she could not open it. She went round by a passage to reach the lawn. While she had been in the hall a scene fit for a melodrama was in progress without. The tiny black Russian landaulet with three ponies abreast which Madame Trebizoff usually drove stood a few paces back near the woods. In the centre of the open space, in the full light both of the moon and the lights from the house, stood the princess, black lace draping her tragically, rubies flaming in her jetty hair, and a blood-red poppy in her breast. She was turning from one group of men to another like a hunted animal: her voice, once let loose from the thin smooth level on which she held it, squeaked and chattered, and then fell into doglike growls and sobs. Mrs. Wilde stood between her and a burly man in gray.

"I assure you, sir, that there is no Madame Varens here. This is an English lady and my guest. My guest! You know who I am—Mrs. John Schuyler Wilde."

"Very sorry, Mrs. Wilde, to annoy you, or these ladies," turning to the group of frightened girls to whom the princess had flown for succor. She looked back from their midst like a furious crow from out of a covey of white doves. "I won't swear that her name's Varens. She's down in the description also as Mrs. Swift and Aurelia Lamb. Regular confidence-woman, madam. I didn't want to follow her in here. Nobody respects ladies as are ladies more than I do. Now, ma'am," turning to Charlotte, "you'd better come quietly. It's nothing serious. A few hundreds. Small operation for you. Not worth disturbing people of this class," nodding back over his right ear as he caught her by the arm.

"Class! What do you mean? This is my class!" shaking him back as if he had been a snake and tapping her breast as she lifted herself to her tiptoes. "My class! Do you hear? I am the Princess Trebizoff. I have witnesses.—Mr. Van Ness! Mr. Van Ness is here to speak for me."

"Pliny Van Ness?" said the awed detective. "If he vouches for you, ma'am—"

Mr. Van Ness, who had watched the arrest with much placidity, was suddenly left by the withdrawal of the crowd standing alone facing the detective and his prisoner. He stroked his blond beard and looked down at her with thoughtful compassion.

"Mr. Van Ness," she said shrilly, advancing a step, "I am in danger of a jail. Certify for me that I am—your friend, the woman whom I represent myself to be."

"Of course any friend of yours, Mr. Van Ness—I may be mistaken," interjected the officer.

"I am very sorry, officer," said the reformer, his mellow tones full of pain. "But this lady—"

"Do you refuse?" she shrieked. Then springing up to him and thrusting her face in his, she whispered, "For Ted's sake! I am your child's mother! If he should find me in jail!"

"I was about to say, officer," calmly pursued Mr. Van Ness, "that this lady is unknown to me except as a casual acquaintance. She may be a princess. She may be a thief. That is for you to settle. As for me—" And waving his white hands and shrugging his broad shoulders, he turned away.

The princess looked after him steadily a moment, then she turned to the men: "Are you going to see me hauled away to prison without a word? I am a woman! An Englishwoman! This is American justice!" She lifted herself again into her favorite attitude of malediction, shaking her fingers against the air as if scattering curses.

"Good gracious!" cried Mr. Waring. "Why! why! Surely I have seen that done before!—I say, judge! Don't you remember? The medium Combe? The spirit—"

"Come!" said the officer gruffly. "We've had enough of this. Your friends disown you, ma'am. I'll trouble you to step down to the hack—"

It was then that the poor princess gave the despairing shriek which Jane had heard. Eluding the officer's clutch, she darted across the open space and faced them, while she plunged her hand into her pocket and drew out a vial full of a dark liquid. There was a cry of horror as she put it to her lips, drained it and sank to the ground.

"Good God! she has taken poison!" cried the captain.

There were immediate shouts for a doctor, and frantic rushes out and back again on the part of Buff and Dave and the young men, who wanted to scatter the news, but were afraid something would happen while they were gone. Mrs. Wilde came up to her. "She really is an impostor, then?" holding out her trembling arms to take her.

"Oh, the worst kind! Dead-beat, confidence—as much lower as you can go. Don't touch her, ma'am. You'd better take them young ladies away too. This isn't the sort of thing for them to see."

"Certainly not," running off like a scared hen-partridge.—"Come, girls, I will take you home at once. This is a phase of life not fit for you to look into."

But she could not drive them farther than the porch, where they huddled, pale, all talking at once, looking back and declaring it was as exciting as any tragedy, and was the poor creature dead? and oh, to think they had all called on her!

By this time Jane was on her knees and had the princess in her arms. "Poor thing! poor thing!" she said. Her own heart was so bruised and sore that she might have sobbed over this other woman if she had had nothing else to do for her.

"Lay her down, miss, if you please. A doctor's been sent for. She's in the hands of medicine and the law."

"Father, where is your patent stomach-pump?"

"The very thing, Jane!" dashing into the house.

"May the Lord have mercy on her soul!" said Waring.

"Mr. Waring, are you there? Help me to carry her. Into my room."

"Somewhere else! Not there!" exclaimed the judge.

"These proceedings are very irregular!" blustered the officer. "Accordin' to New York law, the body shouldn't be touched until the coroner arrives."

"But is she dead?" interposed Mr. Van Ness, bringing the little procession to a full halt. "Is she dead? That is the question.—Allow me. Lay her on this settee: one moment, Miss Swendon," prying one eyelid open and bending his ear to her heart with an air of judicial decision.

"Life," said the detective ponderously, "appears to have become extinct."

Jane pushed back the hair from the lean face. "Perhaps," she said, "she has a child," and then stooped and kissed her on the mouth.

Van Ness, at the word, paused and looked for a moment sharply from one woman to the other. Then with a sad smile he lifted the hand which clenched the vial tightly. It required a wrench to remove it. He uncorked it and put it to his tongue.

"Prussic acid!" said the detective. "Strong odor of peach-blossoms."

"Give me space one moment," said Van Ness excitedly. "There is a chance of saving her!—Stand back, Miss Swendon."

The officer and Jane drew back hastily. He stooped and whispered vehemently into the ear of the dead woman. She opened her eyes, sparkling and full of malice, stared at him doubtfully, then nodded. The captain, a physician and a dozen other aids arrived at the moment.

"You are too late," said Van Ness calmly, meeting them. "Madame Trebizoff had only swooned. She is willing to go with the officer.—Will you take my arm, Miss Swendon? You are faint, I am sure. As for the poison," lowering his voice as he bent toward her, "it was only sweetened water. The princess has taken it before."


The steamer began to cut at last through the short curled waves, a bit of spray blown up on Neckart's mouth was salt, and, looking back, the great congregation of ships in the offing had dwindled to a few black spears of masts.

It was done, then! He had left all behind and cut loose, finally and for ever. He was glad that there was not a familiar face in the ship's company. The other passengers, looking critically at the well-known politician as he paced up and down, rated him as a keen, vigorous man in the maturity of power, wholly engrossed in affairs. He did not once think of the affairs of his own or any other country: he knew now but one fact—that the time was at hand when he must meet the fate to which he had looked forward so long, and that the sea must be between himself and Jane before that day came. But he was not likely to give any hint by appearance or words that this matter troubled him. There was a young mother with her first baby near him. God only knows what thoughts of Jane were in his mind as he looked at her. But he stopped to talk with her husband, who spoke to him about a shoal of porpoises; and afterward, when the captain inquired if health or pleasure took him from home, stated carelessly that it was a cerebral affection, and discussed the efficacy of some recommended bromide.

There was a lady sitting alone on the deck, a dark-green cloth dress belted neatly about a jimp figure, and cut short enough to show tight-laced boots: a close fur cap tied over her ears—an ugly little woman, but all alive and ready for action.

Something familiar in her carriage drew Neckart's eye to her a second time. She nodded and smiled: "You have quite forgotten me?"

"Miss Fleming! It is so many years since I saw you! Or ought I to say Miss Fleming?" looking about for her companion.

She laughed: "I am quite alone. On the ship, and everywhere else, for that matter. They are all gone, Mr. Neckart." She stopped abruptly and turned her head away. Cornelia never could speak of her mother without choking.

"I did not know," said Bruce gently. "It is long since I was at the homestead."

"Yes, there's nobody but me," she said presently with a nervous laugh. "I manage to support myself by art. It's poor support, and poorer art. But I have scraped together enough money to take me to Rome to make it better. With shawl-straps and a satchel American women can go anywhere, you know."

"You do not look like one of the modern Unas," glancing down. There was, on the contrary, a singular degree of femininity in this woman: he remembered now how it used to impress him as a boy. In the crowds that had filled his later years Cornelia's face had faded completely out of his mind. It began to come up now out of his boyhood, not unpleasantly, but rather with much of the glamour of those early days clinging to it. Yet he was annoyed that any old remembrance was to be kept awake during the voyage. He had meant to make it a lapse of absolute forgetfulness, and after that—what? "A season of dreadful looking-for of judgment," he found himself repeating as he talked civilly to Cornelia about the color of the water. He rose at last, being under such a nervous strain that he could not keep still.

"I shall go and beg the captain to give me a seat next yours at table," he said smiling. "I must take an oversight of you."

"Pray do not," she said anxiously, laying her hand on his sleeve. "I will not be a charge on anybody. Why, I am as independent as any—female doctor! Just let me come and go without notice, and if ever you feel like talking to me, don't think of me as a young lady, but only as somebody whom you used to know when you were a boy."

Neckart bowed and smiled. There was something very cordial and sweet in the little speech. Was it genuine nature that dictated it or only fine tact? In any case, he was glad to be relieved of the duty of paying petits soins to any woman. Of course he would not neglect the poor creature, who appeared to be very lonely, and, in spite of her grotesque little swagger, as ill able to stand alone as any woman he had ever seen. He glanced at the homely attractive face looking far out to sea when he turned in his walk. The second time he caught her looking at him with a sadness and hunger in her eyes that drove the blood to his heart like a blow. What was that which had happened between them when they were both children? A love-affair? Absurd! It was impossible that any sane woman could remember such folly. With every drop of blood tingling hot within him he turned down the deck and buried himself in the crowd in the cabin. Why had she never married? But what did that matter to him? He did not come near her at the table, nor join her during the rest of the day. But why had she never married? Could it have been the thought of him which had kept her aloof and solitary all her life?

Miss Fleming was one of the last to forsake the deck that night. She was a good sailor, and not likely to lose any time by sickness. "I can't afford to lose any time," she said to herself, her lips making a thin seam across her face, as she sat hour after hour waiting for him to return. "What I do must be done now or never." She had taken every penny she had in the world to pay for this fortnight in the ship with him.

"I shall succeed," rising, her thin cheeks pale, but her eyes like coals of fire. As she went through the cabin she scowled at the pretty young girls, who, like the birds in the fable, had a thousand lures of innocence and beauty and plumage. She was Reynard with his one trick—friendship and whatever she hid behind it. "But I never failed yet," she said as she shut herself into the darkness of her state-room.


The captain reported himself "under the weather" the day after the nutting frolic. His guests had all gone excepting Van Ness, who remained in New York, appearing at the farm every afternoon with a fresh invoice of diffusive sweetness and light. In a week the captain gave up his daily visit to the club, and one morning Jane found him in the work-room, busy again among the dusty models, with a gray pinched line about his jaws. She ran to put on her apron, and worked with him, jesting and laughing, but as soon as she could escape sent Dave to the doctor. The old gentleman came, chatted a while, and soon followed Jane out to the hall.

"Florida to-morrow? Southern California? No, not now. Let him have home comforts and good nursing this winter. Anything he wants to eat. Humor him as much as you choose."

Jane stood holding by the back of a chair: "You do not mean that there is danger?"

"I see no change in the symptoms," cautiously. "We'll try the new prescription a few days, and we shall see—we shall see."

Jane went back to her father and the models, and talked calmly of screws and pistons. If she could only take the shaking old gray head to her breast and cry her heart out! If she could lie down in the grave with him! They had been such friends all her life! He was the only friend she ever had. She got up and ran out of doors once or twice: her breath was leaving her: his face, with the strange change in it, drove her away. Outside, the ducks were wabbling in and out of the pond, the sun was shining, the chrysanthemums and crimson prince's feather were all in flower. Dave was currying a horse in the stable-yard and whistling a dancing tune. What a foolish fright she had been in! Everything in the world was going just as usual. When she went back, too, the captain was pulling out his patent scissors from a drawer, laughing, his face flushed. He never looked better in his life.

She never left him after that. She had a couch made for herself at his door, that she might hear the moment that he stirred in the night. She could see no change in him from day to day, but she watched everybody keenly who came near him, trying to read their opinion of him in their faces. She fancied there was a difference in the manner of even Dave and Buff to him—a forced jocularity, a peculiar tenderness of voice. Bruno, she observed, had deserted her altogether and kept close to his master.

It was at this time that Mr. Van Ness began to monopolize the house: the very air of it grew bland and decorous. He came early, and stayed until night. The captain treated him with reverential deference: Jane fell into the same habit. She was weak and suasible as a reed just now. She had lost all root and marrow out of her life. Every day her father dilated on Mr. Van Ness's virtues. She could not deny one of them. They began to fence her in as with smooth polished walls, with no breath inside. Bruno, alone inexorable, never allowed him to pass without a snap and growl, although he had yielded enough to the pressure of public opinion not to fly at his throat.

"Mr. Van Ness, my dear," said the captain one day, "has been good enough to look into the affairs of the farm. He says the income from it should be trebled. Ask his advice, Jane. Especially as to turnips. We failed there. What intellectual scope that man has! It grasps a vast theory one moment and the minutest detail the next."

"Yes, father." It mattered little to Jane who meddled with the farm now.

"Mr. Van Ness"—the next day—"was glancing over your book-shelves this morning, Jane. A course of reading such as he would dictate would be of immeasurable benefit to you."

"I know it," humbly. "I am shamefully ignorant."

"Why not put yourself wholly into his care, Jenny?" taking her hand tenderly. "He is one of the best of men."

"I believe he is," candidly.

At this moment the reformer came in sight on the lawn without, the full sunshine falling on him. They both looked at him.

"His intellect is of a high calibre, Jenny: he saw into that idea of mine for the gauge to-day in an instant."

Jane nodded dully.

"And as for looks—have you any fault to find with him, Jane?"

"No, none."

"Then, in God's name, why—" He checked himself. "Mr. Van Ness asked me to speak with you this afternoon. It's a very solemn matter, Jenny. It's for life. You know what I wish. Don't shove off your life's happiness for a prejudice of no more weight than so much fog. I think I'll lie down and sleep a while. Think the matter over. There he is outside. He wishes to talk to you of it now."

Jane lingered, tucked the cover over his feet again and again. She could not go out and talk to this man in cold blood of marriage. When she told him that it could not be, that she could not love him, what reason could she give? She had no reason. There was none. This husband waiting out on the gravel-path, and smiling in on her, was in every way admirable and lovable. But Bruno and old Dave were better comrades for her—nearer kinsfolk.

The captain opened his eyes drowsily: "You are going to read? That's right, Jenny."

She brought the book gladly, and Mr. Van Ness moved disappointed away. There were certain chapters in St. John which the old man himself had taught Jane. Her mother had little to do with the Bible, which she declared was full of Presbyterian bigotry, but the captain, who was at bottom a devout soul, had anxiously tried to give the child as soon as she could speak what he supposed to be the milk of the Word. Every day now she would hear him muttering to himself these passages from the Sermon on the Mount or in John's Gospel, and he would presently call on her to repeat them, explaining them to her as though she were still a child.

"We got away from the Master as we grew older, Jenny: that was the mistake," he said now, stroking her hair as she kneeled by the bed. "I ought to have kept you close by Him. But you see the patents and the other worries—It's all been so hurried—I've hardly begun fairly. But we'll try and do what's right now. There's plenty of time before us."

"Oh, father!" She buried her head on his breast.

"If I've done wrong to any man, I'd like to have his forgiveness and to make restitution. Restitution"—the captain said, talking into the vague space which widened slowly about him every day. Jane, holding his shaking old hand, groped, as every other human soul in pain does, to find this Master.

She had but little faith then: like all other feelings, it would probably come slowly into her slow nature and abide there. But could He come close as her father said? She was so utterly alone! She would be glad to make restitution, though the money had been her own, if that would please Him. But restitution to whom?

"Go now: I want to sleep. Mr. Van Ness is waiting." She moved to the door: "Jenny, you'll say what is right to him. I trust you."

Mr. Van Ness did wait at the door of the conservatory. His white hand was held out, as if to lead her into perfume and light. Was it this which He would order her to do? Was it? The very touch of his hand seemed to her an indecency.

"Miss Swendon—" Van Ness began abruptly, in so rough and candid a tone that Jane looked at him startled and respectful—"you are prejudiced against me. I see that my manner impresses you as artificial. It is so, and I know it. I wish to account to you for that before I open my business to you." He passed his soft fingers slightly down the fold of his shirt, opened his thick red lips once or twice and shut them again, his eyes fixed on her own, probing, gauging her. "I must give you the keynote to my whole life," he resumed. "You were born among people of culture and gentle habits. I was a foundling, the child of vice, reared in it, fed by it, until I was old enough to stand by myself. Then I swore by God's help to leave it behind me for ever. I have struggled on this far. It has been hard work. That is all," with a long breath. "You know what I am now. I wanted you to know precisely what I have been."

It was unwomanly not to make a friendly sign to the man who had thus frankly humiliated himself before her. Jane forced herself to speak:

"You are very sincere—more sincere than is necessary. But I respect you for it."

"You can understand now why my manners and voice bear the evident marks of training. They both have an artificial twang which has prejudiced you against me. Am I right?"

"Possibly you are right," said downright Jane. "If it was only the manner and voice, I have been unjust to you."

He waved his hand with humble deprecation, and sighed audibly. Jane moved restlessly. No exhibition of character could be more noble or genuine: nothing could be more winning than the handsome blond head between her and the shelves of flowers. This senseless antipathy which she felt to both was that of an animal. She was ashamed of it, and stood smiling, her head bent with clumsy politeness, and the same look in her eyes which Bruno gave him.

"You will understand now, too," he continued gently, "why my interest in vicious and hungry children is so deep. I have been one of them. It is little for me to have given my life to help them."

"It must be a comfort to give your life to any certain work," cried Jane hotly. "It's very hard to reach middle age, as I have done, and find one's self fit for nothing! Nothing whatever!"

Mr. Van Ness did not at once reply. He scanned her curiously, as he might a tool about whose temper he was not certain, but which it was necessary for him to use.

"Your father has told you my reason for wishing to speak to you to-day?" he said abruptly.

Jane's head and very throat were scarlet: "Yes. But we will not talk at all of that matter, Mr. Van Ness," stammering with haste. "It is impossible, unnatural. You are more experienced than I: you must see that it is impossible more clearly than I do."

"In hoping," he resumed, after calmly dropping his light eyelashes while she spoke, politely attentive, "in anxiously striving, I may say, to gain you as my wife, I did not intend to give up the cause of the orphan and the fatherless."

"Oh you ought not to give it up! It would be really criminal! After you have gone so far! And I should be no help to you at all," she added breathlessly.

"But," with his light confusing gaze full on her, "you know, to speak plain English, that your father on his deathbed desires that you shall marry me?"

The blood came and rushed back from Jane's face, leaving it colorless.

"Why will you not grant this last wish?"

Why? There was no reason why she should not. She was dear to nobody else in the world than this old man—she was of use to nobody else. To nobody. She looked for some time directly into the shallow eyes facing her with aggressive complaisance. "I cannot do it," she said at last. She seemed to have grown stolid from head to foot.

"Why? What is this bar between us?" coming a step closer.

"How can I tell?" with a nervous shudder. "If I lived with you as your wife for years, you would be none the less a stranger to me."

"Miss Swendon," suddenly, and with the indulgent smile which he would have given to a child, "I will not accept such an answer. Take time. Consider the matter calmly. You speak rashly now. You have not a single reason to give for your decision."

"No," said Jane quietly. "But I shall not alter it."

"This woman," thought Van Ness, "is all mule." But he went on blandly: "In any other case the fact that you were possessed of large means and that I am almost penniless would have deterred me from approaching you in this way—"

"The money counts for nothing with me," quickly.

"I know that. I know that if you were my wife your generous nature would rejoice in giving it to me in furtherance of my great work. In fact—" He stopped, measured her again with the same hesitating inspection, and then, while Jane listened intently, proceeded: "To be quite candid, Miss Swendon, but for a sudden and most unexpected change in Mr. Laidley's disposition on the last day of his life, my Home for Friendless Children would have been made a certainty without your aid."

"What do you mean?"

"The will," deliberately, "which he made but a week before his death left his whole property intact to me as trustee for this charity. You know that he changed his mind and destroyed this will apparently in the very act of dying, and gave it to you. I am rejoiced that he did so: be assured of that. But if it should come back, after all, to the Home, and you with it as a helper, there would be a fine poetic justice in that, I think," with a pleased gurgle in his throat.

Mr. Van Ness had always regarded Jane as a young, insignificant-looking girl. But now, for some strange reason, she impressed him as a middle-aged, powerful woman.

"So you were the heir?"

"Yes. Or the Home, to be exact—the Home."

Jane raised her arms and clasped her hands over her head. She said at last: "The money is mine. It was mine when William Laidley gave it to you. I will keep it as long as my father lives. As soon as he is dead I shall give it to you. I shall be glad to give it up—glad." Her arms fell to her side: a great relief came slowly into her face.

At last the burden was to fall off. The way before her was simple and clear.

Mr. Van Ness laughed with keen amusement, but checked himself with an apologetic cough: "Forgive me, but really, Miss Swendon, you are so incredibly innocent! A mere baby in your knowledge of the world or ordinary customs. It would be impossible for you to make such a transfer. You could not give the estate, and I could not take it, unless upon one condition."

"What is that?"

"That you give it as my wife."

"There is no other way," he resumed after a pause, finding that she made no reply. "Of course," with a bitter laugh, "I do not expect your zeal in behalf of the friendless children to tempt you to so repugnant a step as marriage with me. But that is the only way in which this property could be restored to them."

Still she was silent. A pot with a half-dead geranium was near her: she began to break off the yellow leaves and lay them in a neat little heap one by one. Did Van Ness suspect the truth? He stood erect, regarding her from calm heights of virtue. Presently he continued: "The property, as you say, is legally your own. The tenor of the will makes it so. But when I think of the starved bodies and souls of these poor children, and remember how little you value your great wealth, I feel that surely God meant it for them. It was some strange mistake that took it from them."

Jane did not meet his eye. She pushed open the little door, and went out hurriedly into the fresh air. Van Ness followed her. It is not probable that he had guessed her secret, but he certainly knew that for some reason this fact of the lost will had given him an inflexible hold upon the jaded, fluttering woman. He meant to press it with peremptory force.

The wind without was blowing keen and cold. Jane rallied in it. She turned to Van Ness with something of her ordinary courage. She was absolutely certain of her own honesty, and she hoped that God believed in it. What did it matter if by the laws of men and society she was a thief? It was some time before she caught the meaning of Van Ness's words. He was urging his cause with a surfeit of honeyed and long-conned phrases. He remembered as he talked how many women would receive any hint of courtship from him with delight, and the consciousness gave him a factitious dignity. He walked beside her down the path. Bruno, who leaped the barnyard fence to join her, marched on the other side, fixing a red suspicious eye on him.

"I have not made love to you as a younger man would do. I never have told you how different from every woman you are in my eyes. How attractive—how fair—" His eyes rested on hers for a full silent moment. She turned away with a shiver. "I never have told you how dear you are to me. But you must have seen it."

"No, I did not see it," said Jane bluntly. "But what has my beauty to do with the matter? Or your love? They do not alter you or me."

Even Van Ness was stunned by this calm delivery of fact. He recovered himself presently, and with a smile of hurt feeling gently replied, "Your antipathies are strong, Miss Swendon. Most women would cover them over courteously. But, do you know, I really like your honesty," pointing the tips of his fingers together mildly. "Yes, I do. Now I shall not urge myself personally on your notice any more. I did not seek an immediate marriage. I am willing that time should work for me. Promise me this," halting and suddenly facing her; "look at me as the representative of those poor friendless children whom I love so dearly, and whose inheritance you now enjoy." (He saw and took note of the sudden quailing of her whole bearing.) "You will give your wealth to them some day."

"God knows I shall be glad to do that."

"And yourself to me."

"Never!" she said quietly. But she smiled politely in his face. All the currents of her future life were ebbing from this half hour of time, and she knew it; yet that little taunt at her discourtesy had galled her sorely. Since she was a child she had felt herself and her rugged talk big and boorish and coarse-grained beside the polished complaisance of smaller women. When Van Ness, therefore, took her hand now, and, after kissing the thin fingers with his slow sultry glance, drew them within his arm and held them there close, she did not resist, and walked patiently beside him down the path. Van Ness's hand, as we have said, was unpleasantly cold and clammy.

Jane remembered a story in her primer of the little princess, who, having told a lie, was given over thereafter to the ownership of a frog. It sat on her plate, on her lap, on her bed, on her mouth as she tried to pray. It never left her. It was her master and owner.


As they turned into another path, Jane saw the boy Phil running toward the stables, and Betty came toward her, walking calmly, but twisting her sleeve into a rag with nervous fingers.

"My father!" cried Jane.

"Yes. He's awake, and he don't seem quite so peart as he was this morning. But it's nothing: don't you be scared, miss. I took the liberty of sending Phil for the doctor," panting after her as she ran.

Van Ness quickened his pace and followed.

The captain was in his arm-chair, wrapped in his flowered dressing-gown. Buff and Dave were busy over him, their black lips turning blue with fright.

"No, I'll not go to bed!" he cried testily. "What good will blankets and feathers be to me? It's death, you blockhead! But don't tell her—don't tell Miss Jane."

"Hyah she is, sah."

"Keep her out!—Oh, Jenny! Go, finish your walk. I—I'm very well, and I'd rather be alone a while. Dave will stay with me," looking helplessly up into her white face. Then he broke down and fumbled for her hand: "Oh, I'm going—I'm going, Jenny."

"No, no, father, you shall not go. It's just a passing pain. Swallow this," holding the gray head close to her breast. Her hand shook so that she could not put the spoon to his lips.

"I wish you would go away, child. It will worry you so. I never meant you to be with me when It came."

She could not answer. She laid him down, drenched his hands with camphor, seeing how blue and sunken they were. "His feet are like ice, Betty," she cried. "What shall I do? what shall I do?"

"I've got mustard draughts here, ma'am. Try and get him to take these drops."

"Yes, yes. Don't go out of the room, dear Betty! Don't leave him." She caught hold of this savior who was wise in mustard draughts and tonics. Why had she never learned such things in all her long, useless life? She would not look beyond the blue marks on his hands and the cold of his feet. She and Betty could fight them until the doctor came—just as the wrecked man sees only the floating logs and the raft, and will not look below at the unfathomable black sea waiting for him.

"'Pears to me, Miss Jane," said Dave presently in a pitying whisper, "as dat ar camphire on'y vexes him. His bref is mos' gone."

"Whah de debbil am dat doctor?" muttered Buff, going to the door, with a thrill of terror at his oath. For in the last moment the approach of an awful Power was felt in the commonplace little room. Yet the afternoon sunshine shone as before in the open door, the green curtains waved to and fro, a chicken came pecking up on to the wooden steps. The captain's feeble glance wandered to it.

"The gate of the poultry-yard is broken, Dave.—Remind me to-morrow, Jane—my new lock."

"De Lohd sabe us! Can't you take his mind off his patents, Miss Jane, an' Death jes' at hand?"

"I told Phil to bring the minister with the doctor," whispered Betty. She took the useless mustard away from the poor old feet and covered them reverently. They would never feel any touch again. Then she and Dave drew away from him, and stood back from the chair, leaving him alone with his child.

Jane knelt, holding him by the hand, looking into the dimming eyes. "Father!" she said. "You must not go. You shall not leave me! Father!"

The old man's soul, as always irresolute, halted at the call, going out to its long journey: "I will not leave you until I have taken care of you, Jenny," trying to smile at her.

"And how are you, my dear sir?" said a mellow voice behind her. "Feeling better, are we now—eh?"

"Van Ness? Yes." The captain's voice gathered a little of its old authority, and he struggled to rise. "Is it all settled? Have you promised to marry him, Jenny?"

"She will! she will!" replied Van Ness hastily. "It will be arranged as you wish, my dear sir."

"I must be sure of it," uneasily, with the restlessness of coming death and the old desire to control. "I cannot go until I see you his wife, Jane."

Jane held his hand immovable. She did not stir nor show any feeling more than the wooden plank on which she kneeled.

There was a slight stir at the door. Doctor Knox came in with Mr. Lampret, the meek little Methodist minister from the village. The doctor went up to the captain, who waved him impatiently aside.

"Too late, doctor. Your occupation's gone. I have a matter to arrange, and—only a few minutes."

Jane raised her head, looking dully at the physician.

He shook his head. "There is no chance," he said. As he drew back he watched the girl, rather than the dying man. He was used to seeing women suffer, but he felt an unwonted pity for this friendless Jane.

The captain beckoned feebly to Mr. Lampret: "I'm glad to see you here.—Now—Van Ness—now. I can give her to you. I can die in peace."

Van Ness's color changed, perhaps for the first time in his life. He stood irresolute. He had not thought of immediate marriage with Jane. He scanned in that instant the danger involved in it—the probability that Charlotte would "make trouble"—the chance of buying her off. The actual risk involved was great enough to make even his ruddy face ghastly.

But if he allowed this chance to escape he would never regain his hold on her. Was this property twice to slip from his grasp? He took a step closer to her, and laid his hand on her arm.

"Will you consent?" he said.

She let fall her father's hand and stood up. She and Van Ness were a little apart from the others, so that his words were heard only by herself. There was absolute silence in the room, except for the breathing of the dying man.

Van Ness stooped closer to her: she could feel his warm clammy breath on her cheek. "You are very dear to me." Seeing that she shuddered, he changed his mode of attack to direct assault: "If you marry me you will restore the property—restore, you understand?—to the children to whom it belongs."

"Jenny," moaned her father, "are you ready? I cannot die in peace until this is done."

The clergyman took pity on the girl: something in her set, deep-lined face alarmed him: "Is there any reason why you do not wish to gratify your father's last wish?"

She did not answer. There was no reason but her hopeless passion for another man, whose wife she could never be. Yet it seemed to her that God was bidding her to be true to that true love at whatever cost.

"I infer," said the little man, turning to Van Ness, "that the marriage was arranged before, and is only hastened now by"—glancing at the captain—"circumstances."

"Yes, yes! Precisely!" suavely. "You may trust me. You may have heard my name before—Pliny Van Ness."

Mr. Lampret bowed deferentially: "The name is well known. Our church has reason—grateful," he murmured.—"My dear Miss Swendon, this is a hard trial—hard. A young girl would fain give herself away with joy and rejoicing. But as your father will not depart in peace, I see no reason why the ceremony should not immediately take place."

"Jane! Jane!" cried the captain shrilly, "why do you delay?"

There was no answer for a minute. Then there came into her face a sudden resolve. She turned and held out her hand to Van Ness: "I will marry you."

The words revived the captain. "Lift me up," he said to David—"Closer, closer, Mr. Lampret! I can't hear very well." He listened eagerly until the last words of the marriage service were said. Then his head sank on his breast: "I'm always loth to interfere. But I am glad that is settled properly."

Van Ness turned to kiss his wife, but, without seeing him apparently, she went up to her father and put her lips to his. Van Ness followed her, as if to assert his rightful place, and, standing on the other side of the sofa, possessed himself of the captain's one hand, pressing it gently.

"He is sinking very fast," he said. "Let him rest in my arms."

She shivered, and held him tighter to her breast. When she would have stroked back the gray hair from his forehead, Van Ness's soft fingers were there with hers, soothing them: "Compose yourself. Our dear father will soon be gone."


"Yes, father."

"I'll hear you now—your chapter, you know. We ought to have read the Bible more. We forgot the Lord, we were so busy. But—but—" He lifted his hand, struggled to rise, his dim eyes lighting with sudden energy. "Jenny! He doesn't forget me now!"

"No, father, no!"

There was a long silence. Dave sobbed aloud. Mr. Van Ness cleared his throat composedly. "I will sing," he said. "A hymn would soothe his passage, probably; or shall I pray?"

Jane leaned forward: "Go away!"

"How? Eh?" aghast, and not sure he had comprehended the vehement whisper.

"Go. You shall not come between us in these last minutes. You have the money now. Go away!"

Van Ness wheeled instantly. He was plentiful in expedients for so slight an emergency as this. He beckoned the clergyman and doctor out of the room, and shut the door.

"It would be better to leave them alone, gentlemen. The relation between Captain Swendon and his—ah—Mrs. Van Ness—has always been singularly close and intimate. The presence of so many strangers oppresses them both."

"I readily understand that," rejoined Mr. Lampret eagerly, "as far as we are concerned. But do you return, my dear sir. Surely you—"

But Van Ness waved his hand lightly: "No, no! I am comparatively a stranger to the dear old man. In a few moments—when all is over—I shall return to support and console her."

"Delicate feeling there! Remarkably fine feeling, sir!" said the clergyman as he strolled with the doctor to his buggy, leaving Mr. Van Ness to the sanctity of his grief. "Going now? I shall remain until all is over. There appears to be a storm coming up," with a sad subjection of tone.

The gathering clouds darkened the room where the captain lay dying: the wind sobbed gustily through the open window. His feeble eyes were steady as they never had been in life: he nodded from time to time as Jane repeated the old verses which he had taught her when she was a little child.

"'Come unto Me.' That's good! It's all good.—Some water, Dave. What are you crying about, old fellow?—Yes, we'll read the Bible every day, Jenny. We'll begin all fresh. We've plenty of time—plenty of time—"

Dave, holding the water to his lips, took it quickly away and fell upon his knees.

"Oh, father! father!"

The darkness was heavy and the wind blew fiercely as this overgrown boy's soul went out to love and dogmatize and make mistakes elsewhere.

They let Jane lie a while upon his breast: she was as cold and motionless as the dead when they took her up.

"I'll go for her husband," said the sobbing old negro.

"No," said Betty shrewdly. "Let her alone a while. This is trouble enough, God knows, poor child!"

When Jane's senses came to her, and she looked about her intelligently, old Dave cried eagerly, "I'll fetch Mr. Van Ness: I'll fetch yoh husband, Miss Jenny."

She stood up quickly: "No. Let me be alone with my father a little while. Go out, please, and watch the door."

"Nobody shall come in," said Betty.

The room was nearly dark. She was alone with the dead for a long time. She stooped at last and kissed passionately the poor hand and face which had been close to her all her life.

"Good-bye!" she said. "Good-bye, father!"

When Mr. Van Ness and the clergyman entered the room later, they found Betty there, her lean visage half terrified and half defiant.

"Where is my wife?" said Van Ness with the sad authority becoming the master of this house of mourning.

"She—she begs that she may not be disturbed until to-morrow," said Betty with a scared look behind her. "She's ill. The fact is, she's clean worn out with trouble."

"I can readily conceive that," said Mr. Lampret.

But Van Ness said nothing: he only glanced toward the still figure which lay upon the sofa covered with a white sheet, and turned away with a gloom and alarm on his benignant face quite new to it.

A couple of hours afterward, being alone, he met Betty coming out of Jane's apartment, and stopped her sternly:

"Mrs. Nichols, I must see my wife. If she is ill, my place is beside her."

For her answer Betty, with a gasp, threw open the door.

The room was vacant.

"Where is she?"

"As God sees me, I don't know. She bade me say this to you—That she had paid you the debt, and had gone where you would never find her."

Van Ness's smooth countenance scarcely evinced surprise. He went into the room and walked about it, and as he touched little articles of dress and the toilette which she had left scattered here and there, which were yet warm from her presence, the stout, bulky man could scarcely draw his breath. He stopped in front of the white pillow with the impress of her head on it, took up the velvet band which had fastened her hair, the knot half untied. So nearly within his hold—to escape!

"What is the money to me?" he muttered. "It is Jane that I want—Jane."

Betty was standing at the door when he went out. She cowered back when she saw the sultry fire in his eyes.

"I don't know where she went. She only said as you would never find her, sir."

"I will find her," said Van Ness quietly.

Rebecca Harding Davis.



Few buildings have been the object of such passionate attachment as the great church of Constantinople. To the Greeks of the Lower Empire, St. Sophia was all that their temple was to the Jews—the centre of the national life and the focus of the national religion. There a long train of princes, proudly styling themselves emperors of the Romans, had been consecrated and had worshipped—there a succession of patriarchs had edified the Church, presided over great councils, and defied the rival bishops of Old Rome. The glories of St. Sophia proclaimed that the city of Constantine was not merely the capital of the East, but the one city which had been born and educated in the bosom of the faith, and never polluted by the worship of the older gods. To the modern Greek the gilded Crescent that has supplanted the Cross on its aërial dome is at once a sacrilege and a humiliation, a flashing symbol of political and religious degradation, telling too plainly that the barbarian rules in the palaces of the Cæsars, and that the faith once delivered by the Saviour at Jerusalem has been driven from its noblest temple by the Prophet of Arabia. Nor can the venerable edifice be without interest to all of us when we remember how it is identified with the greatest triumphs and the greatest reverses of Christianity, and with the two great epochs of Christian history—the death of paganism and the birth of free thought: its erection was a proof of the former, and its capture led directly to the Renaissance.

The present church is the fourth which has stood on the same spot and borne the same name. Constantine in A.D. 325—therefore long before his baptism—dedicated the first to the Wisdom of God which was from the beginning (Proverbs viii. 22)—that is, to the Logos, or Word of God. Near it he founded another, dedicated to the Peace of God which passeth all understanding. His son and successor, Constantius, as the former seemed too small for his increasing city, rebuilt St. Sophia, and added to it the latter, the church of St. Irene. This second St. Sophia witnessed the strange pagan revival of Julian and the ascendency of Arianism under Valens. From St. Sophia issued that crowd of satyr-like monks and Jezebel-like women who attacked Gregory Nazianzen in his missionary church Anastasia; and from its gate went forth into poverty and exile Damophilus, the last of the Arian patriarchs, when Theodosius, at the head of his armed soldiers, conducted the triumphant Gregory through streets echoing with cries of rage, grief, astonishment and despair, and in the church, filled with the imperial guards in all the panoply of war, installed him with his own imperial hand on the throne of the patriarchs. But the greatest name in the annals of the church of Constantius is that of St. John Chrysostom. Here he denounced the vices of the rich, the extravagance of female dress, the profuse honors paid to the statue of Eudocia the empress; here, when the fallen minister Eutropius had fled for refuge to the church and lay grovelling in agonies of fear under the holy table, he uttered his great discourse on the instability of human greatness and the forgiveness of injuries.[9] Here, in allusion to the hostility of the empress, he cried, "Herodias is again furious; Herodias again dances; she again demands the head of John"—a sentence not to be forgotten by a woman and a queen. Her revenge came soon. On Easter Eve, A.D. 404, St. Sophia was invaded by the troops, the rite of baptism rudely interrupted, the Catholics driven from the church to the baths, from the baths to the fields: amid the tumult fire burst forth in the sanctuary, and the church perished in the conflagration.

[9] "Vanity of vanities, all is vanity! Where are now the splendid surroundings of the consulship? Where are the gleaming torches, the applause, the dances, the banquets, the crowded feasts? Where are the acclamations of the circus, the adulation of the spectators? Perished. A storm has stripped off the leaves and bared the tree, now tottering from its root. Where are the feigned friends, the revellings and drinkings, the swarm of parasites, the various artifices of the cook, the slaves and ministers to the caprices of the powerful? They were but night and a dream—the day has come and they have vanished; they were spring flowers—the spring has ended and they are withered; they were shadows, and they have passed away—a vapor that is dissipated, a bubble that is burst, a spider's web that is torn. Who was higher in place than this man? Who had ascended greater heights of honor? Now he is more wretched than the prisoner, more pitiable than the slave, more indigent than the beggar famishing. What need is there of words when the man is here before us? See the pallor of death on his cheeks, the chattering of his teeth, the trembling of his limbs—the broken voice, the unsteady tongue, the form and figure befitting a stony heart.

"Nor do I say these things as a reproach, but to soften your hearts—to lead you to be content with his present punishment. Let the rich see here the ruin of the mighty: let the poor thank his poverty, which has been a safe asylum, a waveless harbor, a sure defence. To rich and poor, to high and low, to bond and free, here is a lesson to benefit all. Have not I softened your hearts and cast out your anger, extinguished your inhumanity and led you to compassion? Your faces show it, and your streaming tears. Let us pray to the God of mercy to soften the emperor's heart. Thus shall God be favorable to us; thus shall our sins be wiped out; thus shall we adorn the Church; thus to the farthest ends of the world will be spread the fame of our humanity and forgiveness."

The third church was built by Theodosius, A.D. 415, and witnessed a strange occurrence when its throne was occupied by the well-known Nestorius, whose name still gives an appellation to the widespread Nestorian sect. Proclus, the bishop of Cyzicus, was preaching in St. Sophia, and argued in his discourse for the ascription to the Blessed Virgin of the title "mother of God;" but the patriarch rose from his throne and denounced, in the presence of the astonished congregation, the language of the preacher. This church, too, beheld the excommunication of the Monophysite Acacius, when one of the Sleepless Brotherhood, as the body of monks was called, pinned to his vestments, as he was celebrating at the altar, the sentence of the Roman pontiff, Felix II.

From Old Rome, New Rome adopted old vices—among others, the passion for the entertainments of the circus and the factions to which they gave rise. The two chief parties were the Blues and the Greens, and when Justinian ascended the throne the Greens were partisans of heresy and Anastasius—the Blues, of orthodoxy and Justinian. In January, A.D. 532, their rivalry came to a head, or rather the licentious oppressions of the Blues drove the Greens to despair. The arrest of some ringleaders of both parties led to a temporary union: a joint attack on the prefect's palace resulted; the palace was burnt, the prisons thrown open; the city was in the possession of the mob, who encountered with all the fury of religious enthusiasm the wild barbarian soldiery. The women threw from roofs and windows stones on the heads of the troops, who in return darted firebrands against the houses. For five days the tumult raged and the flames spread. The conflagration destroyed St. Sophia, the baths of Zeuxippus, the Brazen Porch of the palace, St. Sampson's Hospital with its inmates, and the porches which led to the Forum. Justinian had lost his throne had not the empress Theodora inspired him with courage. The sedition was at last suppressed, but not before thirty thousand of the rioters, whose watchword had been Νίκα, perished in the contest.

On the fortieth day after the fire the St. Sophia still standing was begun. After prayer by the patriarch Eutychius the foundation-stone was laid by Justinian on the twenty-third of February, A.D. 532. Large purchases of adjacent lots were made for the purpose of enlarging the site. The land on the right hand of the nave, as far as the pillar of St. Basil, was bought from Charito—on the left, as far as the pillar of St. Gregory, from Xenophon, a cobbler; that for the bema, from a eunuch named Antiochus; for the vestry and treasure-house, from a lady named Anna. The three last named did not want to sell. The emperor in person had to wait on the lady, who, overcome by this mark of zeal or condescension, fell at his feet and gave him the ground, stipulating that she might be buried near it, and trusting that at the day of judgment she might have a share in the merit of such a work. Antiochus was more obdurate, but a cruel advantage was taken of his passion for the sports of the circus. He was arrested on some pretext just before the great games and thrown into prison. As the time of the festival approached he gradually weakened, and when the day at length arrived he surrendered at discretion. The circus was crowded, the emperor in his seat, the races just beginning, but the sport was suspended till Antiochus was brought from prison, and in sight of the eager spectators conducted to the emperor's box to conclude the bargain. The poor cobbler Xenophon was treated scurvily. He had a longing to play the great man once in his life, and demanded as a condition of sale that the factions of the circus should give him a royal salute. The condition was literally fulfilled. Clad in white and scarlet, the cobbler was placed in the centre of the arena and the salute given behind his back.

For the materials requisitions were made in all the provinces. The governors of the Themata of the East, the West, the North and the South were ordered to send up to the capital pillars and marbles from the ancient temples, baths and palaces. Eight columns of porphyry, which Aurelian had transported from Baalbec to adorn the temple of the Sun erected by him at Rome, were sent to Constantinople by Marcia, a noble widow, whose dowry they had been; eight pillars of green marble were supplied by the famous shrine of the Ephesian Diana, and the temples of the Delian Apollo, of Cybele at Cyzicus and of Athene at Athens were despoiled of their most valuable portions.

The work was pressed forward vigorously. The stones were paid for on delivery; the workmen had extra pay twice a week; the emperor, staff in hand, dressed in white linen robe with a white linen kerchief on his head, daily visited and encouraged his workmen. The architects, Anthemius of Tralles and Ignatius of Miletus, had under their orders, according to the Greek stories, one hundred master architects, each superintending one hundred men. The lime was tempered with barley-water, and the foundations of the great central piers, fifty feet square and twenty feet deep, were laid with concrete in which the same barley-water and chopped willow-bark, poured in lukewarm, were chief ingredients. The mosaics and marbles of the interior were laid in lime and oil. The bricks for the cupola were made of Rhodian clay, under the direction of Troilus the chamberlain, Theodore the patrician of Seleucia, and Basil the quæstor, and were so light that twelve of them weighed only as much as one ordinary brick. This last statement, however, of the Byzantine writer is described by Salzenberg as a pure fiction. The building was fireproof, no wood being used except in some of the doors.

While human skill and foresight and industry were thus engaged in their sacred task, the heavenly host, according to the Greek traditions, did not fail to inspire and protect the toilers. Three visions are narrated. One day, when the laborers had retired, leaving their tools under the care of a son of the architect Ignatius, there appeared before the lad, at the right-hand side of the pier of the upper semi-dome as you ascend to the dome, a figure like one of the eunuchs of the court, in white and shining apparel, bidding him recall the workmen to the work of Heaven, and, to give confidence that nothing would be lost during the absence of the messenger, adding, "I swear by the Holy Wisdom I will not depart before thou returnest." The sequel was unfortunate for the boy. By the emperor's orders, all the officials of the court were brought for identification before the stripling: he could recognize none as the one who sent him. Of course, he must have had a vision; and to ensure the perpetual presence and protection of the celestial visitor according to his oath, the boy was sent for the rest of his life to the Cyclades.

Again, one Saturday, as the day was declining, the same figure appeared to the emperor: "Why art thou disquieted for money? Send hither to-morrow some of thy great men, and I will supply thy needs." On the morrow came Strategius the treasurer, Basil the quæstor, Theodore the prefect, and a train of fifty servants and twenty mules. The radiant figure led them through the Golden Gate, and on and on till they stood before an immense palace. They ascended its magnificent portico, and followed their guide through long corridors till they reached a door which he opened with a brazen key, and disclosed a chamber where the floor was covered with gold coin. The mules were loaded with the treasure, and the officers, returning, laid at Justinian's feet eight thousand pounds weight of gold. Astonished at the tale told by the officials, the emperor despatched a messenger to the spot described. No palace there towered aloft: the spot was desolate and unbuilt on.

A third time the angel—in the imperial dress, with the purple buskin—presented himself to the architect, and bade him change his plan from a double to a triple apse τρίφωτον μύακα. He remonstrated, when he next met the emperor, about his contradictory directions, and was awestruck to hear that on the day when the vision came to him in the building Justinian had not quitted his palace.

Thus under angelic guidance the work went on, and after five years, eleven months and ten days of ceaseless toil the stately fane was completed. Largesses of enormous amount were distributed: one thousand oxen, as many sheep, as many swine, six hundred deer, ten thousand fowls, thirty thousand measures of corn, were given to the poor. In long procession, on Christmas Eve, A.D. 538, the emperor, accompanied by the patriarch, came to the door of St. Sophia; thence, unaccompanied by priest or courtier, as though making the final offering alone, he ran to the foot of the ambo, and with hands outstretched in the attitude of prayer exclaimed, "Glory to God, who hath deemed me worthy of such a work! I have conquered thee, Solomon." Well might he so exclaim as he gazed on the temple resplendent with gold and jewels and flashing marbles and decked with the spoils of heathen shrines. There was the white marble of Paros, the blue of Libya, the green of Croceæ, the black-streaked Celtic marble, the rosy-veined Phrygian, the granite and porphyry of Egypt; supporting the four smaller semi-domes were the eight pillars from the temple of the Sun; on either side of the nave the eight columns which had once adorned the temple of Diana of the Ephesians; the seats of the priests and the throne of the patriarch were silver-gilt; the dome of the ciborium over the holy table was of pure gold, bearing a cross weighing seventy-five pounds and encrusted with precious stones. The sacred vessels—the chalices, the flagons, the patens—were of the same metal; the hangings of the altar were of cloth of gold embroidered with gems; the candlesticks on the altar, the ambo, in the women's gallery and elsewhere, six thousand in number, were all of gold, as were the crosses on the bema, the covers of the holy books, the pillars of the iconostasis screening off the bema. In the altar itself pious ingenuity had surpassed itself. Into the fluid mass of liquid gold were thrown pearls, rubies, crystals, topazes, sapphires, onyxes and amethysts to enhance the costliness of the holiest of holies. The expense was enormous—Byzantine writers say three hundred and twenty thousand pounds weight of gold, or between sixty and seventy millions of dollars.

In marked contrast to the pagan temples, where the resources of art were lavished on the exterior, the outside of St. Sophia is remarkably plain and unornamented. To some extent this is due to the removal of all the statues by the Turks; but even when they were in their places it must have been merely a huge rectangular mass. The length of the building is two hundred and forty-one feet, the breadth two hundred and twenty-six feet, the diameter of the dome one hundred feet, the height to the centre of it one hundred and seventy-nine feet. East and west of the great dome spring two large semi-domes, the eastern supported by three smaller semi-domes, of which the centre one covers the bema; the western by two smaller semi-domes. The effect of this arrangement is that the spectator sees at once the lofty dome in the centre, whereas in modern buildings of like design the full view of the dome is not obtained till we are nearly under it. St. Sophia thus seems great at first sight—St. Peter's only after reflection. Around the dome are twenty-four windows; at the four angles are four colossal seraphim; in the centre the face of Christ, the sovereign Judge, looked down in mosaic. The porch or narthex is double, one hundred feet in depth. In the outer one stood the phiale, with the inscription that reads the same backward and forward: ΝΙΨΟΝ ΑΝΟΜΗΜΑΤΑ ΜΗ ΜΟΝΑΝ ΟΨΙΝ— "Wash thine iniquities, not the face alone." Five marble portals, with bronze gates wrought in floriated crosses, admit to the inner narthex, whence nine doors of bronze, exquisite in workmanship, admit to the church. Over the centre doorway is a group in mosaic, where Justinian is represented kneeling with a nimbus round his head. Over this second narthex and the side aisles is the gynœconitis or women's gallery, adorned with sixty-seven pillars, so that the whole number of columns in the church is the prime number one hundred and seven. In the interior was the nave for the laity, divided from the soleas, or the part for the clergy, by the ambo, a stately and elaborate structure with a canopy of gold and a cross of pure gold weighing one hundred pounds. The ambo was at once pulpit and reading-desk. The soleas supplied accommodation for three hundred and eighty-five ministers of various ranks, including sixty priests, one hundred deacons and thirty deaconesses. On the left of the soleas was the seat of the emperor—on the right, the throne of the patriarch. From the soleas projected the apse of the bema, or sanctuary, flanked by the diaconicon, or vestry, and the prothesis, where the elements were prepared for the Eucharist. The bema was divided from the soleas by the iconostasis, or screen, made of silver, and exhibiting in oval medallions the icons or pictures of Our Lord, His Virgin Mother, the prophets and apostles. In the iconostasis were the three holy doors—above the middle one a massive cross of gold. Behind the holy table ran a semicircular row of seats for the officiating clergy, the stalls of silver-gilt, the columns dividing them of gold. In the chord of the bema stood the holy table with its ciborium or canopy of gold.

But in addition to the marble and alabaster which gleamed in various hues from wall and pavement, St. Sophia was bright with mosaics. On the great west arch was represented the Blessed Virgin and Sts. Peter and Paul; on the sides still exist the figures of St. Anthemius, Basil, Gregory, Dionysius the Areopagite, Nicholas of Myra, Gregory the Armenian, and the prophets Jeremiah, Isaiah, Jonah and Habakkuk. On the eastern arch is again a representation of the Virgin Mother, of St. John the Baptist and of John Palæologus, the last Christian restorer of the church; on the arch of the bema, Our Lord, His Mother and the archangel Michael.

On great festivals the emperor went to St. Sophia in state, in embroidered robes, with purple buskins and close diadem. This diadem was a high cap of cloth or silk covered with jewels, the crown formed of a horizontal circle and two arches of gold, bearing at their intersection a cross or globe. With him went the rest of the imperial family, the cæsar or sebastocrator in open diadem and green buskins, the panhypersebastos, the protosebastos and the despots. In attendance were the great officers—the curapalata, or lord steward, with his silver rod; the great logothete, or chancellor; the great domestic, who commanded the infantry; the protostrator, who commanded the cavalry; the stratopedarch, or quartermaster-general; the protospathaire of the guards; the constable of the Franks; the æteriarch of the barbarians; the acolyte of the English or Varangians. In the Byzantine administration the great duke commanded the fleet, having under him the great drangaire and the emir or admiral, an Arabic designation borrowed from the Norman kings of Sicily. To this long array of officials and courtiers must be added the patriarch and his clergy in the magnificent vestments of the Greek Church, if we wish to form an idea of the splendid ceremonial which gave to dome and arch a life and a significance now lost in the simpler forms of Mohammedan worship.

Twenty years after Justinian in his pride had exclaimed, "Νενίκηκά σε, Σαλομών," the great dome and the eastern semi-domes fell and destroyed the holy table and the rich apparatus of the bema; but the zeal and energy of Justinian did not experience any diminution. A nephew and namesake of one of the original designers, Ignatius, was employed to restore the work. He gave the dome its present form, making its height twenty-five feet more than that of its predecessor, thus diminishing the lateral thrust. The church remains substantially the same as thus restored in A.D. 561, but needed and received in after years many repairs. In A.D. 896 the tower at the west end was erected by the emperor Michael, and in A.D. 987 a thorough renovation was carried out by Basil the Bulgaricide. The conquest of the city by the Latins in A.D. 1204 led to the entire destruction of the rich interior arrangements, and we read of the repairs effected by Andronicus in 1307 A.D., and, the eastern semi-dome showing signs of giving way, by John Palæologus IV. in 1345.

The Mohammedan conquest of course swept away the ornaments of the interior—the ambo, the iconostasis and the holy table. The heads of the crosses were chiselled off, so as to destroy the cruciform shape, and the numerous groups and figures portrayed in mosaic were covered with coats of whitewash. During the restoration of the church in the reign of Abd-ul-Medjid these works of art were once more brought to light by Fossati, and sketches of them made by this architect and by Herr Salzenberg before they were again hidden from sight. The figures of the four seraphim were never covered, and still look down upon the desecrated temple: on the four piers hang huge shields bearing in Arabic characters the names of Aboo-bekr, Omar, Osman and Ali, the four companions of the Prophet, whom the orthodox Soonees reverence as the true khalifs. The floor is covered with rich carpeting. As the Mussulman at prayer turns to the Kebla at Mecca—that is, to the south-east—and as the church was built nearly east and west, the pulpit, the carpet, the long lines of worshippers are now arrayed obliquely to the length of the building.

Although the building of Justinian has never had a patriarch like Gregory or Chrysostom, it has been the scene of many important events. At the altar of St. Sophia the emperor Heracleios was compelled by the citizens to swear to remain in Constantinople when, terrified by the attacks of the Alans in the North and the Persians in the East, he was thinking of transferring the seat of the Roman empire to the city of Carthage. In the ambo, Heracleonas, his younger son by the intriguing Martina, was forced to exhibit the true heir to the throne, his nephew Constans. "Christians, to St. Sophia!" was the order of Leontius, who led the revolt against the cruel Justinian II., and "This is the day of the Lord," the text of the sermon from the ambo to the insurgents. In the same spot, after five years of cruel captivity, the five sons of Constantine Copronymus took refuge. Nicephorus, the eldest, had been deprived of sight: the others had their tongues cut out. The blind spoke for the dumb: "Countrymen and Christians, behold the sons of your emperor, if you can recognize our features! We throw ourselves on your compassion." From A.D. 726 there reigned the iconoclastic emperors, who banished all images from the churches, but the year A.D. 842 saw the sacred icons again restored by Theodora. Her patronage raised to the patriarchate Ignatius, a son of the emperor Michael Rhaagabe. He excommunicated the cæsar Bardes for an incestuous marriage, and in revenge the cæsar forcibly expelled him from his church, and then endeavored to extort a confession of resignation by stripes and cruelty. From the high character of Ignatius it was necessary that his successor should be equal to him in reputation: the cæsar selected for the office a man of great firmness, unblemished integrity and immense erudition, the celebrated Photius, whose invaluable work, the Myriobiblion, is still a treasure-house for the scholar. At the time of his election Photius was a layman, combining the somewhat discordant titles of proto-a-secretis, or chief-justice, and protospathaire, or captain of the guards. The first day witnessed his transformation from a layman to a monk; the second day he was made a reader; the third day, a subdeacon; the fourth, a full deacon; the fifth, a priest, the sixth, Christmas Day, A.D. 858, beheld him placed in the throne of Chrysostom. But this new patriarch was not left undisturbed by the friends of Ignatius. They appealed to the pope, Nicholas I., who excommunicated Photius, his legates depositing on the altar of St. Sophia a solemn anathema enumerating the seven heresies of the Greeks, and devoting teacher and disciple to the eternal society of the devil and his angels. "From this thunder-bolt may be dated the schism of the Eastern Church." Photius in turn excommunicated and deposed Pope Nicholas. It is hard to say how often Photius was banished and restored. He was banished by Basil the Macedonian, and Ignatius restored. He was recalled after the death of Ignatius, and presided in the general council of 869 A.D., and was banished again by the emperor Leo.

The conquest by the combined forces of the Venetians and the French in 1204, A.D., was disastrous to St. Sophia. The veil of the sanctuary was torn asunder for the sake of the golden fringe, the altar broken in pieces, and the wrought silver and gold ornaments torn down. A prostitute was placed on the throne of the patriarchs, and danced and sang in derision of the hymns and processions of the Oriental rite. But this wanton sacrilege and shameless indecency disgusted the Greeks less than the celebration of the Eucharist according to the Latin rite with unleavened bread. The Orthodox patriarch fled, a Venetian prelate was installed on the vacant throne, but after a succession of six Latin patriarchs no trace of the Latin conquest was left in the church except the tomb, in the women's gallery,

Of blind old Dandolo,
The octogenarian chief, Byzantium's conquering foe;

and the feelings of the outraged Greeks found expression in the words of the great duke: "I would rather see in St. Sophia the turban of Mohammed than the tiara of pope or cardinal."

This hatred, deep and strong, of the Latins and the Latin rite effectually marred all the attempts at reunion of the two churches undertaken by John Palæologus in the hope of thus alluring to his aid the arms of Western Christendom. When Metrophanes, who had assented to the terms of union with Rome, was consecrated, the spacious church was empty—even the cross-bearers had fled. A final trial to conciliate Rome and the nations who acknowledged the pope as the Vicar of God was made by the ill-fated Constantine. On December 12, A.D. 1452, the two nations joined in communion in St. Sophia: Pope Nicholas and the patriarch Gregory were solemnly commemorated; but the dress and language of the Latin priest were objects of horror, and when he was seen to mix water with the wine and take up the unleavened wafer, the worshippers of either sex and every degree rushed forth from the lofty dome, dispersed themselves in taverns, drank confusion to the slaves of the pope, and emptied their glasses in honor of the Blessed Virgin. The polluted church was deserted by clergy and people, and "a vast and gloomy silence prevailed in that venerable dome which had so often smoked with a cloud of incense, blazed with innumerable lights and resounded with the voice of prayer and thanksgiving." But when Constantine had fallen, with the courage of a Roman, at the gate of St. Romanus, St. Sophia was sought again by the timid crowd. "In the space of an hour the sanctuary, the choir, the nave, the upper and lower galleries, were filled with multitudes of fathers and husbands, of women and children, of priests, monks and nuns," expecting the descent of an angel whose celestial sword was to exterminate the hosts of the Turks. But axes began to thunder at the bolted doors; the priest fled from the altar with the consecrated elements, and tradition added to his escape the miraculous feature that the door through which he passed defied all efforts to open it. This door, in the upper gallery, was opened during the repairs a few years ago, and was found to lead to an old disused staircase choked up with rubbish. Although there is pointed out on one of the pillars a red mark said to have been made by the bloody hand of Mohammed as he stood on a heap of slain, truth compels the historian to assert that the church was not defiled with bloodshed: no resistance was made; the conquerors had merely to select their captives. Through the struggling mass of fierce captors and reluctant prisoners Mohammed forced his way to the bema, laid his hand on the altar and exclaimed, "One only is God, One only; and Mohammed is His prophet." The next Friday all the forms of Islam were gone through—the muezzin proclaimed the hours of prayer from the Venetian bell-tower; the imam preached; the sultan in person performed the namaz of prayer. From that hour the church which had seen the Arian controversy, which had been the scene of disputes respecting the twofold nature, the one person, the eternal generation of the Son, and whose last days were engaged in denying the double procession of the Holy Ghost, has been the temple of a faith that teaches that "God begets not, nor is He begotten; and of His mercy there is no end."

Hugh Craig.



In the obscure period preceding the origin of the great civilizer, Peter I., the Muscovites knew scarcely more than one melody, to which different words were adapted according to the circumstances. "It served alike," says an old author, "the unhappy man for his lamentations; the drunkard for his bacchanalian song; the laborer for his diversion when overcome with weariness; the driver for encouragement to his horses; and the young for regulating their steps in the dance." Among the instruments that were used to accompany this universal melody we notice the goudok, a species of violin having three strings, of which the chanterelle was played pizzicata, while a very short bow was drawn over the other two strings. (These bass strings must have acted like a double pedal accompaniment—i.e. two immovable notes, for the performer had not, so far as we know, a third hand to vary the intonation.) Then there was the balalai-ka, a kind of guitar with two strings; the doutka an exact copy of the double pipes of antiquity; the gousli, or horizontal harp, approaching the zither or psalterion; the valinca, which was a species of bagpipe, etc. All of this was very primitive and a little savage. However, music was noticeably more advanced in the southern province of Ukraine. "Many of the inhabitants of this portion of the country went to Moscow or St. Petersburg, and entered the service of the nobles in the capacity of musicians. They had, and have still, very fine voices. They formed almost the entire choir of the imperial chapel.... The Ukrainians all love music and the dance, and seem to have no occupation more important than that of amusing themselves. They excel particularly on the bandora, with which they accompany their songs of a tender or lively character."

It was hardly until the time of Peter the Great—that is to say, in the early part of the last century—that European music was introduced into Russia. "The czar appointed a certain number of young men, who were taught to play on trumpets, kettle-drums, hautboys and bassoons; and so that the public might be in a state to judge of their progress, he commanded that every day at noon they should perform, some of them in the belfry of the Admiralty, the others in the belfry of the fortress.... While he was at table cornets à bouguin and sackbuts (trombones) were played. The violins and bass-viols were reserved for court balls." But it was not until the reign of the czarina Anne that a troupe of Italian singers established themselves at St. Petersburg. The first opera played by them in this capital was entitled Abiazare: the score was by the Florentine maëstro Araya, chapel-master of the court. It was to the empress Elizabeth, "née avec une âme sensible," that the town of Moscow owed the building of its first theatre. The opera with which it was inaugurated was La Clemenza di Tito, a poem of Metastasio's, the music by Hasse, with a prologue of Araya's entitled La Russia afflitta e riconsolata.

From this time on the musical part of Russia maintained uninterrupted relations with Italy. Araya's successors were Galuppi, Iraetta, Sarti, Cimarosa, Federico Ricci (author of Crispino e la Comare). We must add to the list Boieldieu, who in the first part of this century occupied the envied position of chapel-master to the czar.

And now let us pass over the Pruth. It would be difficult in an article of a few lines to give an exact idea of the Turkish music, for in order to do this it is necessary to treat the question from an acoustic point of view.

In fact, the Oriental gamut differs from ours very essentially, as it contains quarter tones. Our ears, educated to the semitone as minimum interval, cannot seize any melodious meaning in the midst of these heteroclite sounds. However, the Turkish music, well suited to the dance, is not lacking in rhythm. The principal instruments used to mark the time are the daul, or great drum; the tomboleh, or small drum; the kios, a brass drum; the triangle, etc.... As for the other instruments, they are—the sinekeman, a violin of large dimensions; the nei, flute made of a reed; the ghirif, little flute; the kânon, a psalterion with strings of catgut, which is particularly in favor in the harems, etc.... In Constantinople in 1828 (by Farlane) we read: "The music to which the dervishes perform their ambulatory rotations is made up of tambourines, small drums and Turkish flutes.... The dervishes begin singing a soft and slow melody while turning around: then the movement is gradually accelerated until it becomes a giddy whirl, lasting twelve or fifteen minutes. After a brief pause a second dance begins, then a third, more rapid and more savage, and the cries, Allah il Allah, la illa il Allah, are given louder and sharper than before." If our readers have any curiosity about this strange art, they have but to open the score of Oberon: they will find there two authentic Turkish airs, noted down almost textually by Weber—namely, the march of the patrol which ends the first act, and the dizzy round that makes the dénoûment of the piece, dragging the pasha and his suite into a choreographic vortex with the force of a whirlwind.—Condensed from an article by A. de Lasalle.


After the restoration of the monarchy in France on the 22d of July, 1815, a royal decree ordained the banishment of thirty-eight ex-members of the Convention who had voted for the death of Louis XVI. These unhappy regicides took refuge in the Low Countries, but the French government demanded their expulsion, and King William of Holland was reluctantly compelled to obey. Among these persons was Merlin of Douai, who had been Minister of Justice in 1795. On being refused an asylum on Dutch soil, he took passage on board the brig Alice for New York. She was wrecked off Flushing before reaching the Channel. Her passengers were saved, and relanded on the coast of Belgium. In this situation how vividly must Merlin have recalled a parallel event in which he played the part of an unjust and cruel judge, while his victims were two hundred and fifty shipwrecked noblemen escaping from the government of the Reign of Terror!

Minister Merlin, having been written to to know what disposition it would be proper to make of the naufragés de Calais, as these unfortunates are called in history (since the law dooming to death emigrants who returned to France with arms in their hands did not seem to apply to persons shipwrecked while escaping), he answered with fierce brevity, "Wherever I find an enemy I kill him!" In spite of the Minister of Justice, however, public opinion in Calais was on the side of humanity. Delays were interposed, and one brave lawyer, Gorse by name, ventured to address a letter of remonstrance to the minister, which cost him his liberty, and would doubtless have brought him to the guillotine but for the fall of Robespierre.

Among the naufragés de Calais (all noblemen) was the duke de Choiseul-Saintville. He and his companions were transferred from jail to jail during the reign of the Directory. Sometimes they were threatened with courts-martial—sometimes they appeared to be forgotten. Several times they were tried in civil courts, and every time they were acquitted. But they were never set at liberty, and it is difficult to imagine what might have been their fate had not Bonaparte suddenly returned from Egypt. The news of his landing was hailed by all who were suffering from the weak tyrannies and unjust indecisions of the Directory. The naufragés especially saw in his sense of what was generous and just a hope of deliverance.

That deliverance came even sooner than they expected, thanks to the following letter, written by Stéphanie de Choiseul, a girl of fourteen, to the First Consul:

"Citizen General, First Consul:"

I hardly know how to address you, for I am writing without the knowledge of anybody, and I do not even know if you will get my letter. But every one is talking about you: every one is saying that you are so very great—that you are setting so much that has been wrong to rights—that you are doing things so very wonderful. When I hear this I feel confident you will not despise my prayers and tears. If what I am doing seems very extraordinary, pardon my boldness because I am so unhappy.

"You have no doubt heard of the naufragés de Calais, who have been tried and acquitted several times. Several times they have been on the point of being sent away from France and set at liberty, but each time the prospect has only resulted in their being more harshly treated than before. What crime have they committed? They were cast away on the French coast against their will. They were not bearing arms against their country. If you deign to read their defence you will be convinced of the justice of their cause. Alas! Citizen First Consul, my father is one of these unhappy persons. He is sick—he is dying in prison. In spite of any prejudice you may feel against him, you would take pity on him if you could know all he has suffered. He has been now nearly five years in prison, sent from dungeon to dungeon, sometimes confined with mad people, sometimes with criminals.

"After being eleven months imprisoned in the casemates of the citadel of Lille, he has been sent in chains to Ham, and cannot understand why his imprisonment has been made more strict than before. He is now alone, in solitary confinement. I have been torn from him in prison, and now I come imploring you upon my knees to let me go back to him, unless you will grant his liberty to my prayers.

"Take me, citizen general, as a hostage for my father. I will promise he shall submit to whatever conditions may be asked of him. If I may only be imprisoned in his stead, I shall be happy. I will answer for him: you may trust him wherever he may be permitted to live.

"Take pity on my grief: grant me this prayer. If you do, you will make amends to me for many sorrows, for I have lost upon the scaffold my nearest and dearest friends. I have no one left now but my father and my little brother. Take pity upon him and me. We will bless you every day if you do so. The endless gratitude of such poor children will surely do you good, and help in some way to make your life more happy. That gratitude will be always yours if you will save our father, who will die if you do not succor us.

"You are so great you will not despise our prayer. Be our deliverer, and be sure your name will never be uttered in our presence without being blessed from the very depths of our souls."

"Stéphanie Choiseul."

"Hourcourt (Vosges), 4 Frimaire, an VIII."

Immediately after the First Consul had read this letter the naufragés were set at liberty; that is, they were transported beyond the limits of France. Two years later, however, they were permitted to return by the act of general amnesty. Many, however, had already made their peace with the new government. The duke de Choiseul was of that number.

Twenty years later, as we have already seen, Merlin, the savage Minister of Justice who had refused pity to these unfortunate persons, was himself, by a similar shipwreck under similar circumstances, delivered over to the mercy of their friends. He had sententiously declared, "Wherever I find an enemy I kill him!" King William of Holland silenced one of his ministers who was urging him to take revenge on Merlin by very different words: "A hurricane has thrown him back upon our coast: shall I be more pitiless than winds and storms?"

Once again during the brief remainder of his days was Merlin to learn the lesson "noblesse oblige" by experiencing a generosity he had never shown. In 1820 his son, General Eugène Merlin, who had served with distinction under the Empire, but had made his submission to the government of the Restoration, was arrested on a charge of being implicated in a military conspiracy. The matter came before the Court of Peers. The duke de Choiseul, high in the favor of his king, sat as one of the judges. He believed the young man innocent, and took his defence upon himself, pleading his cause so warmly that General Eugène Merlin was acquitted.

Stéphanie de Choiseul married when she grew up, and became duchesse de Marmier.



Seldom now-a-days does an "old master" appear in the catalogues of art-sales or private galleries, the genuine article having grown too scarce and the fictitious too abundant. What the buyer looks for is a picture younger than himself, as full of the fashion of his own day as his coat or his hat. The painter must have some celebrity, and that must have at least six or eight years to grow in. Allowing for that necessary age, the newer the artist the better his work. The period has every confidence in itself, and does not care to look back for guidance and instruction in the principles of beauty and taste.

Naturally, this state of things implies realism in the selection and treatment of subjects. There is no time to idealize. The pencil must seize what is at hand, and serve it up on the spot. Landscapes and figures are flat copies of what the artist sees, and are labelled with their true names. Lorettes, contadine and odalisques are presented to us as such, and not as goddesses, heroines or saints. A ravine in Algeria, Norway or the Rocky Mountains, a sugar-camp in Maine or a wreck at Long Branch, are equally undisguised in their shape and title. The successors of Wilson and Turner no longer compose or combine. They have stopped clipping Nature into bits and sewing her together again like a patchwork quilt. The scenes we meet with on the walls are real scenes, to a tree or a ripple, and the title tells us so. Some liberties are taken with the clouds, and an artificial drapery of light and shade is thrown over the solid objects. Appropriate figures, too, are injected, by way of making up some sort of story and showing that the place is inhabited. But plain, faithful copying, as of an advanced drawing-school turned out of doors, and not pretending to be anything else, is the rule.

Not yet is a representation of Ajax or Ariadne, a satyr or a nymph, labelled "Portrait of a Gentleman" or "of a Lady," as the case may be. That may come ere long, with the names, given and family, of the individuals so honored. Till then we do without the Homeric characters altogether, and get Smith and Jones, their spouses and progeny, in dresses and situations they may be readily conceived as filling.

All this implies a reign of truth. Truth is a good thing, and nowhere a better thing than in art. But literal truth is prosaic, and the Gradgrind school of art has a tendency to lower us to the hardest kind of facts. Stationary subjects are the choice of the copyist. Asses, ponds, weeds, bottles, melons, young chickens (dead), oysters and decayed trees commend themselves as capital sitters. It is disheartening to the amateur to see his gallery gradually assuming the similitude of a common or a junk-shop. However, an ultra-realistic style cannot prevail long. Human nature cannot bear it, and will insist on springing from earth into a purer, thinner and more impalpable air. A craving for the imaginative will assert itself; and when it does so art will be all the stronger for the discipline and study through which it is now passing.


Who was it that, his soul hot within him at the undue predominance of the dead languages in the English university curriculum, declared that the system of facts with which the British graduate of the present day was the most familiar was the intrigues of the heathen gods?

We think of this Thersites sometimes when our eyes light, in big double-sheeted daily or fashionable monthly, on a column or two, fresh from over the water, of exhaustive minutiæ of the daily life, walk and conversation of French artists, playwrights, actors and actresses. Matter of this sort was not wont to be so absorbingly interesting to the American reader. The time was not very long since when a very little of it went a great way with him—when the domestic troubles of Madame de Caux and the personal habits of M. Sardou would not have been considered worth as many lines as they now get paragraphs. Even such assiduously advertised affairs as the relations of De Musset and George Sand, and Rachel's patronage of her pets among the gilded youth, created no contemporary sensation comparable to that consequent upon their resuscitation. And we were none the worse for missing such topics, although they were rather less unworthy of study than the corresponding gossip of to-day. Literature, the drama, music and pictorial art on the Continent were certainly not at a lower standard fifteen or twenty years ago than now. The inner halo around their leading lights was not less attractive or less deserving of micrometric analysis. No first-class name has been added to their number in either walk, nor are the individual careers of the second-class characters who have succeeded them at all more fruitful in salient traits for instruction or entertainment.

It is a familiar theory that the creative age dies out as the critical age gains strength—that when we grow nice, finical and blasé as to the quality of our intellectual aliment, we prove thereby the enfeeblement of our intellectual appetite and digestion. At present, the circumstances point to our having gone a step farther still, and attained the hypercritical stage. Our attention now has degenerated into a study of the dishes wherein the aforesaid food is served—their lustre, fabric, style and "crackle," a craze in flesh-and-blood ceramics. We never get tired of holding them up to the light and minutely mapping all their flaws and beauties, with each shade of color and glaze, superficial and iridescent or struck through and solid.

There may be something in the fierce light that beats upon a literary or artistic throne beneficial alike to subject and monarch. But here there are too many thrones, and the light is too fierce. Let us have a selection of potentates to be illuminated, and let us turn down the gas a little.



Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV. By Francis Parkman. Boston: Little, Brown & Co.

In this volume Mr. Parkman has made a long step toward the culminating point of his historical series, and in the preface he announces that, passing over the intervening half century, he will make the fall of the French dominion in Canada the subject of his next book. There will then be more to relate of interest to readers in general than the events and personages of the present work can afford: this, nevertheless, has a peculiar value, as showing the opening of the rivalry between the French and English colonies, and exposing the causes which from the beginning rendered defeat inevitable for the former. These causes Mr. Parkman has already stated in the Old Régime in Canada, though less clearly and with an apparent tendency to consider that the result, after all, really came from an incapacity of the "French Celt" for self-government. More truly he now says that, had the Huguenots been allowed to settle in Canada, its fate would probably have been different. They represented that middle class to which was in great part due the success of the English settlements; and, standing shoulder to shoulder, as was their way, they would have formed a strong wall against encroachment and invasion. But Louis XIV. wished to exercise a more immediate control over his North American possessions than he might have found practicable had the too independent Huguenots been permitted to swarm into the land. Moreover, the colony, formed originally by the missionaries, retained its religious character to the very end. In the government the priest gradually gave way to the royal officer, though not without a contest: the jarrings between temporal and spiritual authorities were frequent, and not least so in Frontenac's time. He indeed lived in a constant state of quarrel with the Jesuits, who were, nevertheless, his right hand in external troubles. Canada was peopled by an "army of bigots," to use Napoleon's expression; and the priests kept alive the spirit of warlike piety which furthered so well the purposes of king and governor.

Cross in hand, they led their Indian converts to battle; nor do they seem to have softened the asperities of Indian warfare, doubtless looking on fire and steel as the best discipline for their heretical foes. Children taken in war they were accustomed to keep and bring up as Catholics; and this desire to save souls, which was communicated by the fathers to the whole population, helps to explain why captives among the Canadians, as among the Indians, so often forgot their homes and were unwilling to return to them. Both French and savages received their prisoners into their families, and treated them as they did those of their own blood—the latter to make good their losses in war by the adoption of new members into the tribe, the former as well from natural kindliness as moved by eagerness for the spiritual welfare of the benighted. The English, like the Plains Indians of the present day, had no such motives; and those living in captivity among them, however kindly treated, remained aliens, and seized gladly any opportunity of regaining their freedom.

Mr. Parkman, while doing full justice to the ability, valor and self-sacrifice of the priests, condemns of course their acceptance, and even approval, of such barbarous customs as torture and the killing of non-combatants; and this blame extends itself to the French generally, with whose adoption of savage practices he compares the self-restraint and mercifulness of the New Englanders, even when, as at the time of the capture of Port Royal, exasperated by the recent massacre of their countrymen. The causes of this difference of conduct are not far to seek, though Mr. Parkman does not explain them, being perhaps inclined to refer it to national character. The war-parties that left Quebec and Montreal consisted of soldiers, trained to the manner of war which in the first half of that century turned much of Germany into a desert, or of Indians and trappers, red and white savages, who inflicted cruelty on others with all the indifference which they displayed in bearing it. The forces of New England, on the other hand, were composed of fishermen and farmers, men with families and engaged in peaceful occupations, to which war came as an unwelcome interruption. Murder had not been taught them as a duty, but forbidden as a crime; and, more gentle by habit, it was not to be expected but that they would display far more moderation in bloodshedding.

The military character of Canada is strikingly shown by the moral influence exercised over the people by the character of the governor. As in an army the officers are known by the conduct of their troops, so his vigor or inability gave tone to the whole colony. Under Frontenac all was energy and confidence, while under the blustering La Barre and the pious Denonville, who ruled between the count's two terms of office, the habitans shut themselves up in forts, leaving their fields to the ravages of the Mohawks. At the age of seventy Frontenac returned to uphold the failing colony, sent by the king as the only man capable of performing the task. He was sagacious in council, prompt and tireless in action, and, what was a chief recommendation to his post, he well understood the character of the Indians, his dealings with whom were marked by equal address and firmness. "In their eyes," says Mr. Parkman, "Frontenac was by far the greatest of the 'Onontios' or governors of Canada." Common sense and a knowledge of men probably enabled him to make himself feared and esteemed even by the fierce, astute Iroquois, quick at noting weaknesses, but recognizing a man when they saw him. The count, on his side, was attracted by these foes, so difficult to fight, whose shrewd diplomacy and unflinching courage he appreciated no less than their childish simplicity; while their cruelties did not shock the old campaigner against the Turks, who could be cruel enough himself on an occasion where policy seemed to demand it, though he was wont to display much courtesy and generosity toward his English prisoners, many of whom he ransomed from the Indians. In fine, he deserves all the good that Mr. Parkman has to say of him, if not entitled to the unlimited laudations bestowed on him by Father Goyer. The discourse which this priest—one of the Récollet order—held over the count's grave is, as annotated by a hostile critic, a most amusing document, and gives a good idea of Frontenac's real character. He left more friends than enemies behind him, and the mourning of the whole colony for his loss may be set against the bitterness with which his Jesuit adversaries pursued him even after his death.

Nimport. (Wayside Series.) Boston: Lockwood, Brooks & Co.

Nimport certainly deserves to be set high among the new American novels that are appearing in such unaccustomed profusion. If, as it would seem, it is a first venture of some unknown writer, it indicates considerable promise, not perhaps of the highest talent, but of that agreeable union of humor and intelligence of which the richest fruit is to be seen in the stories of Mrs. Oliphant among contemporary authors. The book has decided faults: it is too long; the different chapters are incoherently put together; characters are lugged in and turned out again without any reference to the needs of the plot; what is most interesting is cut up by frequent interruptions; there are too many threads in the story; and yet, in spite of these glaring faults, there is so much cleverness of a certain sort in the parts that are good that the reader is disposed to be very clement toward this well-meant though mistaken profusion of material.

The story deals with the fortunes of a family who have been left almost penniless at the death of their parents, and it is narrated by one of their number, a somewhat wan and spectral figure, an artist, whose adventures are thrust in amid the far more interesting letters of a sister who recounts her experience as governess in a rich but underbred family. Her pen is very sharp, and she puts down what she sees and hears with a great deal of cleverness. Had the story consisted of her career alone, it would have been much completer than the present motley record, but some amusing episodes would have been sacrificed which the reader could ill spare. The best of these is the account of Aunt Bangs, the stately and unattractive relation who swoops down upon the fragment of the family left at home, perching like a raven over their heads, and bullying them to within an inch of their lives. Everything that is said about her is full of unexaggerating humor. There is no grinning through a horse-collar in these scenes, and no reckless abuse of old age, but simply accurate drawing of a disagreeable character. This is certainly much more the author's strong point than the delineation of high tragedy. A murder is as much out of place in this simple narration as it would be in a quiet, decent parlor. It is not thrilling: it is simply out of taste, in the way of being unnatural and offensive, rather than a legitimate conclusion to carefully-drawn horrors. The introduction does not lead up to such black crime: the book is on surer ground in quiet domestic incidents. Once for all, it may be said that Phil's death, the part about Miss Quilty, and possibly even what is said about Dan, might have been omitted to advantage. What would have been left has been only injured by this extraneous matter; and the directness of the impression the better parts would have made has been weakened by this distracting complexity.

The good parts are really good: they lack the morbidness which undermines so many otherwise clever stories of New England life. Too frequently in these the element of passion is left out, and in its place we have a good deal of more or less entertaining writing about love-making, with the love left out. But in this book this mistake is not made. The love-story is simple enough and obvious enough. It will never make the book a formidable rival to Jane Eyre, but so far as it goes it is true to every-day life. What is best in the book is the intelligent observation to which it bears witness: its humor is kindly and unaffected. The story is clumsy and ill-constructed, but it has decided merit, and the faults are only such as could have been best cured by the judicious application of a pair of scissors. Too often it happens that the reader of novels feels that the author's only chance is to be born again, but Nimport inspires the hope that the writer will try again.

Briefe aus Philadelphia (1876) an eine Freundin (Letters from Philadelphia to a Friend). Von Catherine Migerka. Wien.

As long as a concern—or at least curiosity—to see ourselves as others see us shall move American breasts, so long will such books as the above have interest for us. In the present case it will depend entirely upon the interest we take in what relates to ourselves, for a more vapid yet didactic little volume—or rather pamphlet—than Frau Migerka's letters we have never seen; which we say with a distinct recollection of various books by our own country-folk upon foreign lands. The author is not observant of characteristic details, nor has she the faculty of drawing inferences or coming to general conclusions correctly from what she sees and hears. She has collected some statistics, picked up some facts, noted some prominent features of the national physiognomy, which she has mixed and muddled with apostrophes to Nature, Liberty, the soul of man, the German people, the American people, and poetical reflections a little in the manner of Primula Veris, the literary lady in one of Spielhagen's novels. It is unusual for German women to travel: many of them in easy circumstances and a respectable position live and die without going more than a few miles from home. From Dresden to Pilnitz, from Berlin to Potsdam, from Vienna to Glocknitz, from Munich to the Staremberg See, is by many of the inhabitants considered not an excursion, but a journey. Frau Migerka is a Viennese, and appears to have studied men and manners exclusively in her own country, as her standards and comparisons are drawn thence alone. She came to this country with her husband, who was one of the Austrian commissioners to the International Exposition, and Philadelphia was the only American city which she saw, except fleeting glimpses of New York, Boston and Cleveland. She was exceedingly struck by New York Bay, and indeed the scenery of the country wherever she went elicited real raptures, although she invariably declines the attempt to describe it as beyond her powers: the only natural beauties on which she expatiates are sunrises, sunsets and moonlights. These not being phenomena peculiar to our heavens, it is fair to suppose that she was unaccustomed to behold them in so much beauty and splendor; but it does not seem to have occurred to her that they were due to the extraordinary clearness and brilliancy of our sky and atmosphere compared with those of most European countries. New York itself disappointed her by looking "so new and modern, with nothing to recall the past;" and she sadly contrasts Broadway with the streets of Vienna, on which stand the haughty palaces of the Schwarzenbergs, Lichtensteins and Esterhazys. One must be a soulful German to come to a new country and lament over its cities for not being old. Her remarks about Boston are calculated to irritate the feelings of sister-cities without gratifying the Bostonians: she says that the moral qualities of that community have obtained for it the prominence and leadership in the politics and religion of the country and an intellectual supremacy in public opinion, but that the city is not handsome, and that the bad taste of the edifices, within and without, is barbarous. Cleveland is the town which pleases her most, and she ascribes its beauty and charm to German influence. With Philadelphia she had some opportunity of making acquaintance, and her impressions of us will be amusing to those who are not too thin-skinned.

Frau Migerka's first letter is devoted to the women of America, whom she acknowledges to be pretty even beyond their reputation and her expectation, wider awake and better educated than the men, and beautifully dressed, although her sober taste is shocked by the display of jewelry and trinkets in public conveyances and places of amusement. She censures the rage for adornment of the women of the working-classes, and the unfitness of a woman who is maid-of-all-work, whether in her own house or that of an employer, appearing in the street arrayed with pretensions to style and elegance which belong to people of very different means and scale of living. Frau Migerka had heard of the extravagance, love of luxury and idleness of our women in all classes, but inclines to disbelieve the last charge, and to give them credit for working much harder than they themselves admit. She suspects them of being ashamed of household occupations, and shows us first the American woman, who, after drudging the whole week, sallies forth on Sunday peacockwise, "looking like a real lady" (as used to be said before "ladies" took to advertising their desire for a cook's or chambermaid's situation), and then the good German housewife, who, after "cooking and cleaning all day long, stirring with spoons and clattering with plates, patching the children's clothes and darning the goodman's hose, has no ambition beyond relating her achievements to her next-door neighbors over a friendly gossip-cup of coffee." It is a lifelike picture of the two types: no right-minded person will deny the folly and vanity of the American city woman, who does not lack mentors and censors in her own country; but whether the German housewife, after her day of multifarious scrubbing, scouring and sewing, might not find something better to talk about in the evening, Frau Migerka could learn from some of our Yankee farmers' wives. She considers American wives very inferior to German ones; and there, again, she is right, as far as industry and self-forgetfulness are concerned; but she also considers American husbands as in a condition of subservience and degradation, of which flagrant instances are their not daring to smoke in their wives' rooms, and going to market carrying the basket. How wrong and inverted is such a position! No, no: if there must be slaves, Nature has settled of which sex they shall be by appointing that the weak shall serve the strong. Therefore she accounts for the respect which the unworthy fair sex receives in America, like several other things which she cannot otherwise explain, as being a matter of tradition, the habit of a reverence which our foremothers rightly received from men for whom they had sacrificed everything but principle.

Frau Migerka betrays her curious lack of the inductive faculty by accusing us of want of domestic taste and love of home, after remarking on the inaptitude of our houses for social purposes: while delighted with their cleanliness and convenience, she is struck by the absence of suitable rooms for the assembling of guests, and the consequent inconvenient crowd at an ordinary American party. Now, home-keeping is a good fault, but a fault it is in the extent to which we carry it: moreover, we and the English are the most domestic, the only truly domestic, people, for we are the only civilized people who have houses and homes of our own, and do not live in flats and apartments and go out for our meals, repairing to beer-halls and tea-gardens in the evening. Because Frau Migerka did not see the family circle, from the grandmother down, abroad, knitting, chatting, drinking coffee and listening to music with one ear—and a very cheerful sight it is—she inferred that there is no family circle in this country, although, putting that and the snug sitting-rooms, inconvenient for large companies, together, a sharper woman would have come to an opposite conclusion. However, it is not for their acumen that we quote any of her remarks, although, as has been shown, they are sometimes sensible and just. There is much of both sense and justice in her strictures on our mode of keeping Sunday—"the compulsory Sabbath," as she terms it—which in her ignorance she supposes to be a purely American custom. She is full of sympathy for the breakers of the Sunday liquor-law, especially for the poor publicans. But while speaking of the universal strict observance of the day, she represents it as a sore tax and burden to a great number, who resent it as an infringement of their personal liberty. She reconciles the apparent contradiction in such a situation by referring to a vice which gives her a ready key to many inconsistencies of our national character and conduct—hypocrisy. One is forced to suppose that this seems a natural explanation, since the hypocrite, whether an American type or not, figures prominently in most pictures of German society drawn by German hands.

Quakerism, our public-school system and our charities are the things which please Frau Migerka best, and impress her most favorably among our institutions. The skein of poetry which is so queerly entangled with the homespun yarn of the German nature is drawn out by the Floral Mission, the Children's Free Excursions and the Midnight Association: she declares that American women are truly admirable in their beneficence, and that the way in which the poor are cared for by private kindness and liberality, independent of the state, is one of the brightest sides of our social life. But does it come from a warmer benevolence, a deeper sense of brotherhood, than in other nations? She thinks not. Besides the great affluence of the country as a whole, there are three causes for American charity—vanity and the emulation of rival sects, the feeling of universal equality, which makes almsgiving in every form appear more as a duty than a benefit, and the afore-mentioned tendency to hypocrisy.

Whatever Frau Migerka finds good in America which is not hypocrisy or a relic of the past she ascribes to German influence. We are undoubtedly indebted to Germans for many excellent and pleasant usages, as well as for the rapid decay of that superstitious deference to women of which she complains. Our increasing love of music she rightly claims is due to her countrymen, but its primitive manifestations are all our own, and her sufferings from them form one of the few lively passages in the narrative. The piano in the steamboat saloon; the boarding-school girl—"dear Carry, who has got on so splendidly with her music in such a short time;" the Canadian rustic dandy, who only knows his notes; the long-haired travelling virtuoso with his violin (in all probability her own countryman, however); the head-waiter and his harp; the young bride in her smart clothes, with her thin voice and endless ballads; the exulting bridegroom, who accompanies her on a three-stopped tin trumpet,—form a Bedlamite procession through which our sympathies follow her; but in setting down this experience as American, although it occurred on a voyage up the Saguenay, she overlooks the proud fact that German influence must be spreading to Canada.

Frau Migerka's letters are not to be treated seriously, nor are they merely to be made fun of. They would not deserve more than a paragraph's notice but for their local interest, which will probably make them more entertaining to Philadelphians than they could have been to the female friend in Vienna. They are not written in an unfriendly spirit; yet nothing the lady met with wins cordial, hearty sympathy or approbation, her commendation of our charities being, as we have seen, qualified by the motives for them which she supposes. The one thing in America which she felt she should regret is Niagara, which is unlucky for her, as there are few things for which she could not more easily find a substitute. Of her reflections and aspirations—

Á la mode Germanorum,
With her sentimentalibus lachrymæ roar 'em,
And bathos and pathos delightful to see—

the following specimen will suffice: "Here flows the Wissahickon, silent, dark and motionless, as if dreaming of a bygone world and unable to awaken to the bustling present. Many an Indian maiden has beheld her brown visage and sparkling eyes mirrored in its crystals. Yet let no one trust the quiet of that river: a short space farther and the tranquil stream becomes a rushing mountain-torrent, the friendly vale grows wildly romantic, full of gloomy, mysterious beauty. How like is this water to many a human soul, which lives as serene and shut within itself as if it scarce knew what it is to feel, until passion sweeps over it and the whole being is changed and uplifts its voice loud and tumultuous!"

Jack. From the French of Alphonse Daudet, author of "Sidonie," "Robert Helmont," etc., by Mary Neal Sherwood, translator of "Sidonie." Boston: Estes & Lauriat.

Daudet's Sidonie in its English form certainly received in this country all the praise it deserved. It has now been followed by the same author's Jack, which has the additional advantage of its predecessor's success, and shares with it the benefit of careful translation. The story is an exceedingly pathetic one: it describes the career of the son of a frivolous woman, of not even doubtful reputation, from the time of his entering school until his death. This mother is a silly creature with an affectionate heart, who is really fond of her son and tries in her feeble way to do all she can for him. Being rebuffed in her attempt to place him in one school, she thrusts him into another, and leaves him to be first petted and then bullied by a French translation of Squeers and a crowd of his satellites. With one of the teachers, D'Argenton, the mother falls wildly in love, and they are married. Jack runs away from school to their home, and finds himself pursued by the malignity of his step-father, who finally sends him off to work in a machine-shop. The people he sees here are kind to him, but the work is much too hard for his delicate health, and, to make matters worse, he is offered, and accepts in his ignorance, a place as stoker in a large steamship. This is almost his death, but he manages to escape penniless from the wreck of the ship, and returns to Paris. He finds near by, in the suburb where he had formerly lived, the old doctor who had been kind to him, and his granddaughter, with whom he is soon in love. At this point it will be well to stop abridging the story, so that the reader may find out for himself the poor young fellow's subsequent misery. There are occasional slight relapses into the happiness he has at rare intervals already known in his life, and at the last he dies in the arms of the woman he loves; but the general impression is that of great wretchedness.

There is this relief to the somewhat monotonous gloom—that Jack's character is refined and strengthened by what he goes through; and there is very touching pathos in his treatment of his mother at all times, and especially when she puts an end to his hopes of saving enough money to marry on by returning to live with him. Yet it is a question whether there is not a wanton and wilful accumulation of wretchedness about the poor fellow's head, which, of course, does its allotted work in depressing the reader, and so makes the book effective, but also, it may be felt, offensive as regards literary art. A cool inventory of Jack's causes for happiness and sorrow might leave the reader undecided about the nature of the book, and its mournfulness might be matched by that of many another novel which is considered to be only allowably pathetic; but this one is written with such virulence, so to speak, or at least with such manifest design to accumulate miseries, that the reader's soul revolts within him at being put on the rack in this violent way. What makes it more noticeable is, that this is a French novel which is thus marked by what are more distinctly the qualities of an English novel. In French novels we expect to find a more temperate method of writing and the absence of such heat as Daudet shows, which is of common occurrence in those English novels where no pains are spared to show the good man's virtues and the bad man's faults. Mr. Carker, in Dombey and Son, may serve as an example of the way this is sometimes done. Daudet is quite as energetic in pointing obvious morals. The way he impales D'Argenton on the point of his pen and spares no pains in holding him up to ridicule is an instance of this, while a much clearer one, and one wholly unredeemed by such permissible satire as at times redeems the portrait of D'Argenton, is the account of the school to which Jack is sent. There is no air of reality in the account of the little king of Dahomey who is Jack's sole friend in that wretched place. Then, too, the poor silly mother can never appear but the author, besides making her talk and act like the foolish creature she is, must be for ever whispering in the reader's ear that she is a great fool and a frivolous creature. This over-violent method defeats its own object, and surprises and pains the reader instead of gratifying him. Nothing is taken for granted; we are not left to perceive anything by our own unaided vision; everything is made as plain for us as if it were written in words of one syllable. But that way of writing palls at length, and calls forth a feeling of disappointment with what is in some respects a very able novel.

X. Doudan, Mélanges et Lettres. Avec une introduction par M. le comte d'Haussonville, et des notices par MM. de Sacy et Cuvillier-Fleury. Tome III. Paris: Calmann Lévy.

Only a year ago two volumes of M. Doudan's correspondence were given to the public—they received notice in these pages,[10] it will be remembered—with a conditional promise of more in case the first should be duly appreciated. Fortunately, these letters were widely read and heartily admired, so that now we have this third volume, with further selections up to the year 1860, and the promise of the speedy appearance of a fourth, to contain letters after that date and Doudan's essay on the "Revolutions of Taste." There need be no fear in any one's mind that all the best letters were taken for the first publication, and that the editor has been obliged to swell the pages of this volume with Doudan's hasty, uninteresting notes. Far from it: everything that Doudan wrote had, as some one has well said, the flavor of perfection: he never wrote letters as one writes prize essays, cramming into some of them all his wit and wisdom, leaving his less fortunate correspondents to content themselves with the meagre statement of facts. All the qualities that were to be noticed in the volumes that first appeared are to be found here; and they are qualities of the rarest sort. His method of expressing himself is simply delightful, his French is most charming, and his wit and humor must fascinate those who are capable of appreciating anything outside of mathematical exactness of statement. Critics have been by no means unanimous in his praise: some have complained that he wrote his letters with the direct intention of pleasing—not so much those to whom the letters were avowedly sent as deceived posterity. The only reason for this ill-natured supposition would seem to be that the letters were too good for private correspondence; which is a strong argument in favor of reading them. Others—and they are French critics—despise him because he was a friend of the duc de Broglie, but in the course of time this will doubtless be forgiven him. Some, too, object to his humor. M.G. Monod, for instance, who is a very intelligent man, says in the Academy that Doudan "makes fun of everything, even when fun is quite out of place. Even in the most tragic occurrences he finds occasion for wit." But, after all, it is a way humorists have: the only remedy for such levity would seem to be decapitation or solitary confinement in prison without pen, ink and paper. Some are so captious that they say Doudan was too delicate and refined a critic for the crude world he lived in. But what is the use of a critic who praises what is worthless, and has no word of encouragement for what is good and deserving of praise? The value of a man like Doudan is that he rises above the common herd by the exactest discrimination: he never follows the multitude in adoring false gods, but is true to his own delicate taste. If common sense is the power of applying the judgment to trifles as well as to important matters, good taste in literature is the habit of applying the judgment to slight as well as to serious questions. Doudan's taste is most refined; that is to say, he is not influenced by general rumor, but he examines everything on its own merits, overlooking nothing, and appreciating even slight matters without placing them above things of real importance.

[10] See number for October, 1876.

Here is a bit of his criticism: "You were quite right to be irritated with this Fanny. I had to see what success Madame Bovary had with all the clever people of society to believe in the success of Fanny. His emphatic and declamatory style has helped the author in putting into his book more shocking and absurd things than there were in the vile anecdotes about Madame Bovary. If a young buffalo in the Pontine Marshes were to write his memoirs, with a detailed account of his loves, his jealousy, his excesses and his despair, he would doubtless give expression to the same sentiment of moral good and evil among buffaloes, but he would not exaggerate the fashion of description in such a ridiculous way. The genuineness of his feelings would prevent his seeing a number of things which do not concern his passions. He would not describe, while sharpening his horns for the fight, the little field-flowers, which he could not notice, nor the village curé's wig, which does not concern him at all; but this small and numerous school of self-styled realists has, in my opinion, so little keen feeling and true passion that it is like the mathematician who wrote from his mother's deathbed, 'I lost my mother this day at twenty-two and one-half minutes after eight [mean time].' The passions are not so accurate, and do not see so many things."

Here is an extract from a letter written in the perturbed days of 1848: "In the country, whence I write, there is no news. The vervain, the heliotropes, are in flower, as they are every year, and the squirrels run up and down the trees without asking what is going on in Paris. Not one has subscribed to the most insignificant newspaper. By the way, do you suppose there are social disturbances among the beasts of the air, or of the fields, or of the waters? That is not impossible, and I should be very sorry if it were the case: it pleases my imagination more to think that the squirrels are living to-day just as they lived in the garden of Eden; but I have already told you that at a not very remote period a race of rats, stronger than those who dwelt here, came by chance on a merchant vessel from the East Indies, and drove out all the former population of rats that had lived under our old kings. The ancient race of rats is to be found only in isolated farms. We have no longer the rats that gnawed the cloaks of the knights of the Middle Ages. Ask some professor of the Jardin des Plantes what he thinks of it.

"When I say that everything is quiet here, I am wrong, for the men at least were very uneasy regarding what might take place on the 14th of July. It was whispered that there was confusion in the capital, and when the diligence passed by a great many small land-owners were on their doorsteps waiting for their newspaper, while their cows were feeding quietly in the meadow, not suspecting that there was a Ledru-Rollin or a Louis Blanc in the world who wanted to begin the world over again on a better model. This eagerness to know what is going on in Paris is a customary sign of disturbance. At present one is naturally anxious to know whether the little field one has planted with handsome trees will by to-morrow's sunrise belong to some obscure soldier of the obscure Sobrier. Formerly they were the veterans of Sylla or of Cæsar, at least, who took the house of Virgil, but now-a-days they are the veterans of Sobrier who threaten the house of Victor Hugo. The times are deteriorating in every direction."

Further extracts might be made in abundance to show the humor that played over not the surface of things, but their inmost depths, and threw such a clear light on all sorts of topics; but the reader would do best to add this volume to the other two, and judge for himself how great is the merit of these letters, how rare the intelligence they show, how fine the appreciation of literature and of men which breathes through them all. They are books for all time.

Books Received.

The Wings of Courage: Stories for American Boys and Girls. From the French, by Mary E. Field. With Illustrations. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

Lotus Land, and Other Poems. By G.S. Ladson. Cincinnati: Peter G. Thomson.

The Young Magdalen, and Other Poems. By Francis S. Smith. With Portrait of the Author. Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson & Brothers.

Imaginary Conversations. By Walter Savage Landor. Fifth Series—Miscellaneous Dialogues (concluded). Boston: Roberts Brothers.

Biology, with Preludes on Current Events. By Joseph Cook. (Boston Monday Lectures.) Boston: James R. Osgood & Co.

The Sanitary Condition of City and Country Dwelling-houses. By George E. Waring, Jr. New York: D. Van Nostrand.

Meister Karl's Sketch-Book. By Charles G. Leland (Hans Breitmann). Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson & Brothers.

Beautiful Snow, and Other Poems. By J.W. Watson. Illustrated. Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson & Brothers.

Dick's Recitations and Readings. No. 5. Edited by William B. Dick. New York: Dick & Fitzgerald.

Nicholas Minturn: A Study in a Story. By J.G. Holland. New York: Scribner, Armstrong & Co.

Cooking Receipts from Harper's Bazaar. (Half-Hour Series.) New York: Harper & Brothers.

Devil-Puzzlers, and Other Studies. By Frederick B. Perkins. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons.

The Outcast, and Other Poems. By J.W. Watson. Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson & Brothers.

The Publishers' Trade-List Annual, 1877. New York: Office of Publishers' Weekly.

Egypt as it Is. By J.C. McCoan. With Map. New York: Henry Holt & Co.

The New School-Ma'am; or, A Summer in North Sparta. Boston: Loring.

Hetty's Strange History. (No-Name Series.) Boston: Roberts Brothers.

East Lynne. By Mrs. Henry Wood. New York: Dick & Fitzgerald.

Tangled: A Novel. By Rachel Carew. Chicago: S.C. Griggs & Co.

Selections from Epictetus. Boston: Roberts Brothers.

New Music.

Sweet and Low: Cradle Song. Words by Tennyson; Music by Mrs. R.H. Alexander. Philadelphia: W.H. Boner & Co.

Beneath the Stars: Serenade. Words and Music by Charles T. Dazey. Louisville, Ky.: D.P. Faulds. "C" Co.: Ne Plus Ultra March. By Frank Green. Philadelphia: W.H. Boner & Co.

Buttercup Polka. By Eastburn. Philadelphia: W.H. Boner & Co.

Transcriber's Notes:

Table of Contents and List of Illustrations added by Transcriber.

Page 538 Why should not good and virtuous German Fraüleins, should be Fräuleins.

Page 548 she answered dreamily. Changed closing punctuation with
period not comma as original text printed.

Pages 580-581 end-of-page hyphenation break-fast-tray. Changed to
breakfast tray.

Page 601 The Fräulien colored slightly. Changed to Fräulein colored slightly.

Page 633 diadem, This ... comma should be period, changed to period.

Page 648 Harper's Bazar. Changed to Harper's Bazaar

End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 20, No.
33, November 1877, by Various


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