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Title: Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Volume 20. July, 1877.
Author: Various
Language: English
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LIPPINCOTT'S MAGAZINE

OF

POPULAR LITERATURE AND SCIENCE.

VOLUME XX.

[Illustration]

PHILADELPHIA:

J. B. LIPPINCOTT AND CO.

1877.

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1877, by

J.B. LIPPINCOTT & CO.,

In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.

LIPPINCOTT'S PRESS,

_Philadelphia_.



CONTENTS.


                                                                        PAGE

Abbeys and Castles                        _H. James, Jr._                434

A Day's March through Finland             _David Ker_                    116

A Few Letters                             _E. C. Hewitt_                 111

A Great Day. From the Italian of Edmondo de Amicis                       340

A Kentucky Duel                           _Will Wallace Harney_     578, 738

A Law unto Herself                        _Rebecca Harding Davis_    39, 167,
                                                          292, 464, 614, 719

Alfred de Musset                          _Sarah B. Wister_              478

Among the Kabyles (_Illustrated._)        _Edward C. Bruce_         265, 406

A Month in Sicily (_Illustrated._)        _Alfred T. Bacon_              649

An English Easter                         _Henry James, Jr._              50

A Paduan Holiday (_Illustrated._)         _Charlotte Adams_              278

A Portrait                                _Ita Aniol Prokop_             698

A Summer Evening's Dream                  _Edward Bellamy_               320

A Venetian of the Eighteenth Century      _H. M. Benson_                 347

Baden and Allerheiligen (_Illustrated._)  _T. Adolphus Trollope_         535

Brandywine, 1777                          _Howard M. Jenkins_            329

Captured by Cossacks. (_Illustrated._) Extracts from
  Letters of a French Officer in 1813     _Joseph Diss Debar_            684

Château Courance                          _John V. Sears_                235

Chester and the Dee (_Illustrated._)      _Lady Blanche Murphy_     393, 521

Communism in the United States            _Austin Bierbower_             501

Days of my Youth                          _M. T._                        712

Down the Rhine (_Illustrated._)           _Lady Blanche Murphy_       9, 137

Edinburgh Jottings (_Illustrated._)       _Alfred S. Gibbs_               28

English Domestics and their Ways          _Olive Logan_                  758

Folk-Lore of the Southern Negroes         _William Owens_                748

"For Percival." (_Illustrated._)                               416, 546, 665

In a Russian "Trakteer"                   _David Ker_                    247

Irish Society in the Last Century         _Eliza Wilson_                 183

Léonie Regnault:
  A Study from French Life                _Mary E. Blair_                 61

Little Lizay                              _Sarah Winter Kellogg_         442

London at Midsummer                       _H. James, Jr._                603

Madame Patterson-Bonaparte                                               309

Ouida's Novels                            _Thomas Sergeant Perry_        732

Our Blackbirds                            _Ernest Ingersoll_             376

"Our Jook"                                _Henrietta H. Holdich_         494

Primary and Secondary Education in France _C. H. Harding_                 69

Some Last Words from Sainte-Beuve         _Sarah B. Wister_              104

The Bass of the Potomac                   _W. Mackay Laffan_             455

The Chef's Beefsteak                      _Virginia W. Johnson_          596

The Church of St. Sophia                  _Hugh Craig_                   629

The Doings and Goings-on of Hired Girls   _Mary Dean_                    589

The Flight of a Princess                  _W. A. Baillie-Grohman_        566

The Marquis of Lossie                     _George Macdonald_    81, 210, 355

The New Soprano                           _Penn Shirley_                 249

The Paris Cafés                           _Gilman C. Fisher_             202

Verona. (_Illustrated._)                  _Sarah B. Wister_              155

Vina's "Ole Man." (_Illustrated._)        _Lizzie W. Champney_           194


LITERATURE OF THE DAY, comprising Reviews of the following Works:

Avery, Benjamin Parke--Californian Pictures in Prose and Verse           775

Baker, M. A., James--Turkey                                              135

Burroughs, John--Birds and Poets                                         516

Dodge, R. I.--The Plains of the Great West and their Inhabitants         262

Doudan, X.--Mélanges et Lettres                                          646

Field, Marie E.--The Wings of Courage                                    776

Gill, W. F.--The Life of Edgar Allan Poe                                 518

Concourt, de, Edmond and Jules--Madame Gervaisais                        388

Gréville, Henry--Les Koumiassine                                         519

Hoffman, Wickham--Camp, Court and Siege                                  261

Kismet                                                                   392

McCoan, J. C.--Egypt as it Is                                            774

Mazade, de, Charles--The Life of Count Cavour                            772

Migerka, Catherine--Briefe aus Philadelphia (1876) an eine Freundin      643

Nimport                                                                  642

Parkman, Francis--Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV         641

Price, Major Sir Rose Lambart--The Two Americas                          132

Procter, Bryan Waller (Barry Cornwall)--An Autobiographical Fragment
    and Biographical Notes                                               133

Reid, T. Wemyss--Charlotte Brontë                                        390

Robinson, Leora B.--Patsy                                                776

Sherwood, Mary Neal--Jack. From the French of Alphonse Daudet            645

Squier, E. George--Peru                                                  259

Synge, W. W. Follett--Olivia Raleigh                                     518

Wheaton, Campbell--Six Sinners; or, School-Days in Bantam Valley         776


OUR MONTHLY GOSSIP, comprising the following Articles:

A Cheering Sign, 258; A Crying Evil, 771; A Day at the Paris
Conservatoire, 512; A Missing Item, 770; A Neglected Branch of
Philology, 385; Another Defunct Monopoly, 386; Artistic Jenkinsism, 640;
Brigham Young and Mormonism, 514; Fernan Caballero, 761; Foreign Leaders
in Russia and Turkey, 765; François Buloz, 382; Friend Abner in the
North-West, 254; How shall we Call the Birds? 256; Katerfelto in Repose,
387; "Les Naufragés de Calais," 637; Miridite Courtship, 253; Notes from
Moscow, 509; Punching the Drinks, 130; Realistic Art, 639; Russian and
Turkish Music, 636; The Coming Elections in France, 127; The Dead of
Paris, 122; The Departure of the Imperial Guards, 768; The Education of
Women in India, 515; The Modern French Novelists, 379; The
Nautch-Dancers of India, 132; The Octroi, 763; The Religious Struggle at
Geneva, 125; Von Moltke in Turkey, 129; Water-Lilies, 384.


POETRY:

A Wish                              _Henrietta R. Eliot_      308

Fog                                 _Emma Lazarus_            207

For Another                         _S. M. B. Piatt_          405

From the Flats                      _Sidney Lanier_           115

"God's Poor"                        _E. R. Champlin_          711

Heine (Buch der Lieder)             _Charles Quiet_           354

Selim                               _Annie Porter_            755

Song                                _Oscar Laighton_          545

Sven Duva. From the Swedish
  of Johan Ludvig Runeberg          _C. Rosell_               611

The Bee                             _Sidney Lanier_           493

The Chrysalis of a Bookworm         _Maurice F. Egan_         463

The Dream of St. Theresa            _Epes Sargent_            565

The Elixir                          _Emma Lazarus_             60

The Marsh                           _S. Weir Mitchell_        245

The Sweetener                       _Mary B. Dodge_            49

To Sleep                            _Emilie Poulsson_         201



LIPPINCOTT'S MAGAZINE

OF

_POPULAR LITERATURE AND SCIENCE_.

JULY, 1877.

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1877, by J. B.
LIPPINCOTT & CO., in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at
Washington.



DOWN THE RHINE.

THIRD PAPER.


[Illustration: EVENING CONCERT AT WIESBADEN.]

Wiesbaden (the "Meadow-Bath"), though an inland town, partakes of some
of the Rhine characteristics, though even if it did not, its notoriety
as a spa would be enough to make some mention of it necessary. Its
promenade and Kurhaus, its society, evening concerts, alleys of
beautiful plane trees, its frequent illuminations with Bengal lights,
reddening the classic peristyles and fountains with which modern taste
has decked the town, its airy Moorish pavilion over the springs, and
its beautiful Greek chapel with fire-gilt domes, each surmounted by a
double cross connected with the dome by gilt chains--a chapel built by
the duke Adolph of Nassau in memory of his wife, Elizabeth Michaelovna,
a Russian princess,--are things that almost every American traveler
remembers, not to mention the Neroberger wine grown in the neighborhood.

Schlangenbad, a less well-known bathing-place, is a favorite goal of
Wiesbaden excursionists, for a path through dense beech woods leads from
the stirring town to the quieter "woman's republic," where, before
sovereigns in incognito came to patronize it, there had long been a
monopoly of its charms by the wives and daughters of rich men, bankers,
councilors, noblemen, etc., and also by a set of the higher clergy. The
waters were famous for their sedative qualities, building up the nervous
system, and, it is said, also beautifying the skin. Some credulous
persons traced the name of the "Serpents' Bath" to the fact that snakes
lurked in the springs and gave the waters their healing powers; but as
the neighborhood abounds in a small harmless kind of reptile, this is
the more obvious reason for the name. I spent a pleasant ten days at
Schlangenbad twelve or thirteen years ago, when many of the German
sovereigns preferred it for its quiet to the larger and noisier resorts,
and remember with special pleasure meeting with fields of Scotch heather
encircled by beech and chestnut woods, with ferny, rocky nooks such
as--when it is in Germany that you find them--suggest fairies, and with
a curious village church, just restored by a rich English Catholic,
since dead, who lived in Brussels and devoted his fortune to religious
purposes all over the world. This church was chiefly interesting as a
specimen of what country churches were in the Middle Ages, having been
restored in the style common to those days. It was entirely of stone,
within as well as without, and I remember no painting on the walls. The
"tabernacle," instead of being placed _on_ the altar, as is the custom
in most churches now, and has been for two or three hundred years, was,
according to the old German custom, a separate shrine, with a little
tapering carved spire, placed in the corner of the choir, with a red
lamp burning before it. Here, as in most of the Rhine neighborhoods, the
people are mainly Catholics, but in places where summer guests of all
nations and religions are gathered there is often a friendly arrangement
by which the same building is used for the services of two or three
faiths. There was, I think, one such at Schlangenbad, where Catholic,
Lutheran and Anglican services were successively held every Sunday
morning; and in another place, where a large Catholic church has since
been built, the old church was divided down the middle of the nave by a
wooden partition about the height of a man's head, and Catholic and
Protestant had each a side permanently assigned to them for their
services. This kind of practical toleration, probably in the beginning
the result of poverty on both sides, but at any rate creditable to its
practicers, was hardly to be found anywhere outside of Germany. I
remember hearing of the sisters of one of the pope's German prelates,
Monsignor Prince Hohenlohe, who were Lutherans, embroidering
ecclesiastical vestments and altar-linen for their brother with as much
delight as if he and they believed alike; and (though this is anything
but praiseworthy, for it was prompted by policy and not by toleration)
it was a custom of the smaller German princes to bring their daughters
up in the vaguest belief in vital truths, in order that when they
married they might become whatever their husbands happened to be,
whether Lutheran, Anglican, Catholic or Greek. The events of the last
few years, however, have changed all this, and religious strife is as
energetic in Germany as it was at one time in Italy: people must take
sides, and this outward, easy-going old life has disappeared before the
novel kind of persecution sanctioned by the Falk laws. Some persons even
think the present state of things traceable to that same toleration,
leading, as it did in many cases, to lukewarmness and indifferentism in
religion. Strange phases for a fanatical Germany to pass through, and a
stranger commentary on the words of Saint Remigius to Clovis, the first
Frankish Christian king: "Burn that which thou hast worshiped, and
worship that which thou hast burnt"!

[Illustration: PROMENADE AT WIESBADEN.]

[Illustration: LUTHER'S HOUSE AT FRANKFORT.]

Schwalbach is another of Wiesbaden's handmaidens--a pleasant, rather
quiet spot, from which, if you please, you can follow the Main to the
abode of sparkling hock or the vinehills of Hochheim, the property of
the church which crowns the heights. This is at the entrance of the
Roman-named Taunus Mountains, where there are bathing-places, ruined
castles, ancient bridges, plenty of legends, and, above all, dark solemn
old chestnut forests. But we have a long way to go, and must not linger
on our road to the free imperial city of Frankfort, with its past
history and present importance. Here too I have some personal
remembrances, though hurried ones. The hotel itself--what a relief such
hotels are from the modern ones with electric bells and elevators and
fifteen stories!--was an old patrician house ample, roomy, dignified,
and each room had some individuality, notwithstanding the needful amount
of transformation from its old self. It was a dull, wet day when we
arrived, and next morning we went to the cathedral, Pepin's foundation,
of which I remember, however, less than of the great hall in the Römer
building where the Diets sat and where the "Golden Bull" is still
kept--a hall now magnificently and appropriately frescoed with subjects
from German history. Then the far-famed Judengasse, a street where the
first Rothschild's mother lived till within a score of years ago, and
where now, among the dark, crazy tenements, so delightful to the
artist's eye, there glitters one of the most gorgeously-adorned
synagogues in Europe. A change indeed from the times when Jews were
hunted and hooted at in these proud, fanatical cities, which were not
above robbing them and making use of them even while they jeered and
persecuted! The great place in front of the emperor's hall was the
appointed ground for tournaments, and as we lounge on we come to a queer
house, with its lowest corner cut away and the oriel window above
supported on one massive pillar: from that window tradition says that
Luther addressed the people just before starting for Worms to meet the
Diet. This other house has a more modern look: it is Goethe's
birthplace, the house where the noted housekeeper and accomplished
hostess, "_Frau Rath_"--or "Madam Councilor," as she was
called--gathered round her those stately parties that are special to the
great free cities of olden trade. Frankfort has not lost her reputation
in this line: her merchants and civic functionaries still form an
aristocracy, callings as well as fortunes are hereditary, and if some
modern elements have crept in, they have not yet superseded the old. The
regattas and boating-parties on the Main remind one of the stir on the
banks of the Thames between Richmond and Twickenham, where so many "city
men" have lovely retired homes; but Frankfort has its Kew Gardens also,
where tropical flora, tree-ferns and palms, in immense conservatories,
make perpetual summer, while the Zoological Garden and the bands that
play there are another point of attraction. Still, I think one more
willingly seeks the older parts--the Ashtree Gate, with its machicolated
tower and turrets, the only remnants of the fortifications; the old
cemetery, where Goethe's mother is buried; and the old bridge over the
Main, with the statue of Charlemagne bearing the globe of empire in his
hand, which an innocent countryman from the neighboring village of
Sachsenhausen mistook for the man who invented the _Aeppelwei_, a
favorite drink of Frankfort. This bridge has another curiosity--a gilt
cock on an iron rod, commemorating the usual legend of the "first living
thing" sent across to cheat the devil, who had extorted such a promise
from the architect. But although the ancient remains are attractive, we
must not forget the Bethmann Museum, with its treasure of Dannecker's
_Ariadne_, and the Städel Art Institute, both the legacies of
public-spirited merchants to their native town; the Bourse, where a
business hardly second to any in London is done; and the memory of so
many great minds of modern times--Börne, Brentano, Bettina von Arnim,
Feurbach, Savigny, Schlossen, etc. The Roman remains at Oberürzel in the
neighborhood ought to have a chapter to themselves, forming as they do a
miniature Pompeii, but the Rhine and its best scenery calls us away from
its great tributary, and we already begin to feel the witchery which a
popular poet has expressed in these lines, supposed to be a warning from
a father to a wandering son:

  To the Rhine, to the Rhine! go not to the Rhine! My son, I counsel thee well;
  For there life is too sweet and too fine, and every breath is a spell.

  The nixie calls to thee out of the flood; and if thou her smiles shouldst see,
  And the Lorelei, with her pale cold lips, then 'tis all over with thee:

  For bewitched and delighted, yet seized with fear,
        Thy home is forgotten and mourners weep here.

[Illustration: JOHN WOLFGANG GOETHE.]

[Illustration: GOETHE'S BIRTHPLACE.]

This is the Rheingau, the most beautiful valley of rocks and bed of
rapids which occurs during the whole course of the river--the region
most crowded with legends and castles, and most frequented by strangers
by railroad and steamboat. The right bank is at first the only one that
calls for attention, dotted as it is with townlets, each nestled in
orchards, gardens and vineyards, with a church and steeple, and terraces
of odd, over-hanging houses; little stone arbors trellised with
grapevines; great crosses and statues of patron saints in the warm,
soft-toned red sandstone of the country; fishermen's taverns, with most
of the business done outside under the trees or vine-covered piazza;
little, busy wharfs and works, aping joyfully the bustle of large
seaports, and succeeding in miniature; and perhaps a burgomaster's
garden, where that portly and pleasant functionary does not disdain to
keep a tavern and serve his customers himself, as at Walluf.

[Illustration: JUDENGASSE AT FRANKFORT.]

At Rauenthal (a "valley" placed on high hills) we find the last new
claimant to the supremacy among Rhine wines, at least since the Paris
Exhibition, when the medal of honor was awarded to Rauenthal, which has
ended in bringing many hundreds of curious connoisseurs to test the
merits of the grape where it grows. Now comes a whole host of villages
on either side of the river, famous through their wines--Steinberg, the
"golden beaker;" Scharfenstein, whose namesake castle was the refuge of
the warlike archbishops of Mayence, the stumbling-block of the
archbishops of Trèves, called "the Lion of Luxembourg," and lastly the
prey of the terrible Swedes, who in German stories play the part of
Cossacks and Bashi-Bazouks; Marcobrunnen, with its classical-looking
ruin of a fountain hidden among vineyards; Hattenheim, Hallgarten,
Gräfenberg; and Eberbach, formerly an abbey, known for its "cabinet"
wine, the hall-mark of those times, and its legends of Saint Bernard,
for whom a boar ploughed a circle with his tusks to show the spot where
the saint should build a monastery, and afterward tossed great stones
thither for the foundation, while angels helped to build the upper
walls. Eberbach is rather deserted than ruined. It was a good deal
shattered in the Peasants' War at the time of the Reformation, when the
insurgents emptied the huge cask in which the whole of the Steinberg
wine-harvest was stored; but since 1803, when it was made over to the
neighboring wine-growers, it has remained pretty well unharmed; and its
twelfth-century chapel, full of monuments; its refectory, now the
press-house, with its columns and capitals nearly perfect; its cellars,
where every year more wine is given away than is stored--_i. e._, all
that which is not "cabinet-worthy"--as in the tulip-mania, when
thousands of roots were thrown away as worthless, which yet had all the
natural merit of lovely coloring and form,--make Eberbach well worth
seeing.

Next comes Johannisberg, with its vineyards dating back to the tenth
century, when Abbot Rabanus of Fulda cultivated the grape and Archbishop
Ruthard of Mayence built a monastery, dedicated to Saint John the
Baptist, which for centuries was owner and guardian of the most noted
Rhine vintage; but abuses within and wars without have made an end of
this state of things, and Albert of Brandenburg's raid on the monks'
cellars has been more steadily supplemented by the pressure of milder
but no less efficient means of destruction. When Napoleon saw this tract
of land and offered it to General Kellermann, who had admired its
beauty, he is said to have received a worthy and a bold answer. "I thank
Your Majesty," said the marshal, "but the receiver is as bad as the
thief." The less scrupulous Metternich became its owner, giving for it,
however, an equivalent of arable and wood land. The Metternich who for
years was Austrian ambassador at Paris during the brilliant time of the
Second Empire, and whose fast and eccentric wife daily astonished
society, is now owner of the peerless Johannisberg vineyards, among
which is his country-house. Goethe's friends, the Lade and Brentano
families, lived in this neighborhood, and the historian Nicholas Vogt
lies buried in the Metternich chapel, though his heart, by his special
desire, is laid in a silver casket within the rocks of Bingen, with a
little iron cross marking the spot. At Geisenheim we are near two
convents which as early as 1468 had printing-presses in active use, and
the mysterious square tower of Rüdesheim, which brings all sorts of
suppositions to our mind, though the beauty of the wayside crosses, the
tall gabled roofs, the crumbling walls, the fantastically-shaped rocks,
getting higher and higher on each side, and the perpetual winding of the
river, are enough to keep the eye fixed on the mere landscape. At the
windows, balconies and arbors sit pretty, ruddy girls waving their
handkerchiefs to the unknown "men and brethren" on board the steamers
and the trains; and well they may, if this be a good omen, for here is
the "Iron Gate" of the Rhine, and the water bubbles and froths in
miniature whirlpools as we near what is called the "Bingen Hole."

As we have passed the mouth of the Stein and recollected the rhyme of
Schrödter in his _King Wine's Triumph_--

[Illustration: RÜDESHEIM.]

    Wreathèd in vines and crownèd with reeds comes the Rhine,
    And at his side with merry dance comes the Main,
    While the third with his steady steps is all of stone (Stein),
    And both Main and Stein are prime ministers to the Lord Rhine--

so now we peer up one of the clefts in the rocks and see the Nahe
ploughing its way along to meet the great river. Just commanding the
mouth is Klopp Castle, and not far warlike Bingen, a rich burgher-city,
plundered and half destroyed in every war from those of the fourteenth
to those of the eighteenth century, while Klopp too claims to have been
battered and bruised even in the thirteenth century, but is better known
as the scene of the emperor Henry IV.'s betrayal to the Church
authorities by his son, who treacherously invited him to visit him here
by night. A little way up the river Nahe, where the character of the
people changes from the lightheartedness of the Rhine proper to a
steadiness and earnestness somewhat in keeping with the sterner and more
mountainous aspect of the country, is Kreuznach, (or "Crossnear"), now a
bathing-resort, and once a village founded by the first Christian
missionaries round the first cross under whose shadow they preached the
gospel. Sponheim Castle, once the abode of Trithemius, or Abbot John of
Trittenheim, a famous chronicler and scholar, reminds us of the brave
butcher of Kreuznach, Michael Mort, whose faithfulness to his lawful
lord when beset by pretenders to his title in his own family won for the
guild of butchers certain privileges which they have retained ever
since; and Rheingrafenstein, where the ruins are hardly distinguishable
from the tossed masses of porphyry rock on which they are perched, tells
us the story of Boos von Waldeck's wager with the lord of the castle to
drink a courier's top-boot full of Rhine wine at one draught--a feat
which he is said to have successfully accomplished, making himself
surely a fit companion for Odin in Walhalla; but his reward on earth was
more substantial, for he won thereby the village of Hüffelsheim and all
its belongings. In a less romantic situation stands Ebernburg, so called
from the boar which during a siege the hungry but indomitable defenders
of the castle paraded again and again before the eyes of the besiegers,
whose only hope lay in starving out the garrison--the property of the
Sickengens, whose ancestor Franz played a prominent part in the
Reformation and gave an asylum in these very halls to Bucer,
Melanchthon, Oecolampadius and Ulrich von Hütten. Past Rothenfels,
where towering rocks hem in the stream, like the Wye banks in Arthur's
country on the Welsh borders; the scattered stones of Disibodenberg, the
Irish missionary's namesake convent, which afterward passed into the
hands of the Cistercians; Dhaum Castle and Oberstein Church, these two
with their legends, the first accounting for a bas-relief in the great
hall representing an ape rocking a child, the heir of the house, in the
depths of a forest, and giving him an apple to eat,--we come to a
cluster of castles which are the classical ground of the Nahe Valley.
The very rocks seem not only crowned but honeycombed with buildings:
chapels stand on jutting crags; houses, heaped as it were one on the
roof of the other, climb up their rough sides, and the roofs themselves
have taken their cue from the rocks, and have three or four irregular
lines of tiny windows ridging and bulging them out.

Taking boat again at Bingen, and getting safely through the Rhine "Hell
Gate," the "Hole," whose terrors seem as poetic as those of the Lorelei,
we pass the famous Mouse Tower, and opposite it the ruined Ehrenfels;
Assmanshausen, with its dark-colored wine and its custom of a May or
Pentecost feast, when thousands of merry Rhinelanders spend the day in
the woods, dancing, drinking and singing, baskets outspread in modified
and dainty pic-nic fashion, torches lit at night and bands playing or
mighty choruses resounding through the woods; St. Clement's Chapel, just
curtained from the river by a grove of old poplars and overshadowed by a
ruin with a hundred eyes (or windows), while among the thickly-planted,
crooked crosses of its churchyard old peasant-women and children run or
totter, the first telling their beads, the second gathering flowers,
and none perhaps remembering that the chapel was built by the survivors
of the families of the robber-knights of Rheinstein (one of the
loveliest of Rhine ruins) and three other confederated castles, whom
Rudolph of Habsburg treated, rightly enough, according to the Lynch law
of his time. They were hung wherever found, but their pious relations
did not forget to bury them and atone for them as seemingly as might be.

[Illustration: BINGEN, FROM KLOPP CASTLE.]

Bacharach, if it were not famed in Germany for its wine, according to
the old rhyme declaring that

    At Würzburg on the Stein,
    At Hochheim on the Main,
    At Bacharach on the Rhine.
    There grows the best of wine,

would or ought to be noticed for its wealth of old houses and its many
architectural beauties, from the ruined (or rather unfinished) chapel of
St. Werner, now a wine-press house, bowered in trees and surrounded by a
later growth of crosses and tombstones, to the meanest little house
crowding its neighbor that it may bathe its doorstep in the
river--houses that when their owners built and patched them from
generation to generation little dreamt that they would stand and draw
the artist's eye when the castle was in ruins. Similarly, the many
serious historical incidents that took place in Bacharach have lived
less long in the memory of inhabitants and visitors than the love-story
connected with the ruined castle--that of Agnes, the daughter of the
count of this place and niece of the great Barbarossa, whom her father
shut up here with her mother to be out of the way of her lover, Henry of
Braunschweig. The latter, a Guelph (while the count was a Ghibelline),
managed, however, to defeat the father's plans: the mother helped the
lovers, and a priest was smuggled into the castle to perform the
marriage, which the father, after a useless outburst of rage, wisely
acknowledged as valid. The coloring of many buildings in this part of
the Rhineland is very beautiful, the red sandstone of the neighborhood
being one of the most picturesque of building materials. Statues and
crosses, as well as churches and castles, are built of it, and even the
rocks have so appealed by their formation to the imagination of the
people that at Schönburg we meet with a legend of seven sisters,
daughters of that family whose hero, Marshal Schomburg, the friend and
right hand of William of Orange, lies buried in Westminster Abbey,
honored as marshal of France, peer of Great Britain and grandee of
Portugal, and who, for their haughtiness toward their lovers, were
turned into seven rocks, through part of which now runs the irreverent
steam-engine, ploughing through the tunnel that cuts off a corner where
the river bends again.

Now comes the gray rock where, as all the world knows, the Lorelei
lives, but as that graceful myth is familiar to all, we will hurry past
the mermaid's home, where so much salmon used to be caught that the very
servants of the neighboring monastery of St. Goar were forbidden to eat
salmon more than three times a week, to go and take a glimpse of St.
Goarshausen, with its convent founded in the seventh century by one of
the first Celtic missionaries, and its legend of the spider who remedied
the carelessness of the brother cellarer when he left the bung out of
Charlemagne's great wine-cask by quickly spinning across the opening a
web thick enough to stop the flow of wine. A curious relic of olden time
and humor is shown in the cellar--an iron collar, grim-looking, but more
innocent than its looks, for it was used only to pin the unwary visitor
to the wall while a choice between a "baptism" of water and wine was
given him. The custom dates back to Charlemagne's time. Those who,
thinking to choose the least evil of the two, gave their voice for the
water, had an ample and unexpected shower-bath, while the wine-drinkers
were crowned with some tinseled wreath and given a large tankard to
empty. On the heights above the convent stood the "Cat" watching the
"Mouse" on the opposite bank above Wellmich, the two names commemorating
an insolent message sent by Count John III. of the castle of
Neu-Katzellenbogen to Archbishop Kuno of Falkenstein, the builder of the
castle of Thurnberg, "that he greeted him and hoped he would take good
care of his mouse, that his (John's) cat might not eat it up." And now
we pass a chain of castles, ruins and villages; rocks with such names as
the Prince's Head; lead, copper and silver works, with all the activity
of modern life, stuck on like a puppet-show to the background of a
solemn old picture, a rocky, solitary island, "The Two Brothers," the
twin castles of Liebenstein and Sternberg, the same which Bulwer has
immortalized in his _Pilgrims of the Rhine_, and at their feet, close to
the shore, a modern-looking building, the former Redemptorist convent of
Bornhofen. As we step out there is a rude quay, four large old trees and
a wall with a pinnacled niche, and then we meet a boatful of pilgrims
with their banners, for this is one of the shrines that are still
frequented, notwithstanding many difficulties--notwithstanding that the
priests were driven out of the convent some time ago, and that the place
is in lay hands; not, however, unfriendly hands, for a Catholic German
nobleman, married to a Scotch woman, bought the house and church, and
endeavored, as under the shield of "private property," to preserve it
for the use of the Catholic population of the neighborhood. Last summer
an English Catholic family rented the house, and a comfortable home was
established in the large, bare building attached to the church, where is
still kept the _Gnadenbild_, or "Grace image," which is the object of
the pilgrimage--a figure of the Blessed Virgin holding her dead Son upon
her knees. These English tenants brought a private chaplain with them,
but, despite their privileges as English subjects, I believe there was
some trouble with the government authorities. However, they had mass
said for them at first in the church on weekdays. A priest from Camp,
the neighboring post-town, was allowed to come once in a week to say
mass for the people, but with locked doors, and on other days the
service was also held in the same way, though a few of the
country-people always managed to get in quietly before the doors were
shut. On Sundays mass was said for the strangers and their household
only in a little oratory up in the attics, which had a window looking
into the church near the roof of the chancel. One of them describes "our
drawing-room in the corner of the top floor, overlooking the river," and
"our life ... studying German, reading and writing in the morning, dining
early, walking out in the evening, tea-supper when we come home....
There are such pretty walks in the ravines and hills, in woods and
vineyards, and to the castles above and higher hills beyond! We brought
one man and a maid, who do not know German, and found two German
servants in the house, who do everything.... It is curious how cheaply
we live here; the German cook left here does everything for us, and we
are saying she makes us much better soups and omelettes and souffles
than any London cook." Now, as these three things happen to be special
tests of a cook's skill, this praise from an Englishman should somewhat
rebuke travelers who can find no word too vile for "German cookery."

[Illustration: RHEINGRAFENSTEIN.]

The time of the yearly pilgrimage came round during the stay of these
strangers, "and pilgrims came from Coblenz, a four hours' walk (in
mid-August and the temperature constantly in the nineties), on the
opposite side of the river, singing and chanting as they came, and
crossed the river here in boats. High mass was at half-past nine (in the
morning) and benediction at half-past one, immediately after which they
returned in boats down the stream much more quickly. The day before was
a more local pilgrimage: mass and benediction were at eight, but
pilgrims came about all the morning." Later on, when the great heat had
brought "premature autumn tints to the trees and burnt up the grass,"
the English family made some excursions in the neighborhood, and in one
place they came to a "forest and a large tract of tall trees," but this
was exceptional, as the soil is not deep enough to grow large timber,
and the woods are chiefly low underwood. The grapes were small, and on
the 22d of August they tasted the first plateful at Stolzenfels, an old
castle restored by the queen-dowager of Prussia, and now the property of
the empress of Germany. "The view from it is lovely up and down the
river, and the situation splendid--about four hundred feet above the
river, with high wooded hills behind, just opposite the Lahn where it
falls into the Rhine." Wolfgang Müller describes Stolzenfels as a
beautiful specimen of the old German style, with a broad smooth road
leading up over drawbridges and moats, with mullioned windows and
machicolated towers, and an artistic open staircase intersected by three
pointed arches, and looking into an inner courtyard, with a fountain
surrounded by broad-leaved tropical water-plants. The sight of a
combination of antique dignity with correct modern taste is a delight so
seldom experienced that it is worth while dwelling on this pleasant fact
as brought out in the restoration of Stolzenfels, the "Proud Rock." And
that the Rhinelanders are proud of their river is no wonder when
strangers can talk about it thus: "The Rhine is a river which grows
upon you, living in a pretty part of its course:... its less beauteous
parts have their own attractions to the natives, and its beauties,
perhaps exaggerated, unfold greatly the more you explore them, not to be
seen by a rushing tourist up and down the stream by rail or by boat, but
sought out and contemplated from its heights and windings.... In fact,
the pretty part of its course is from Bingen to Bonn. Here we are in a
wonderfully winding gorge, containing nearly all its picturesque old
castles, uninterrupted by any flat. The stream is rapid enough, four
miles an hour or more--not equal to the Rhone at Geneva, but like that
river in France. One does not wonder at the Germans being enthusiastic
over their river, as the Romans were over the yellow Tiber."

[Illustration: MOUSE-TOWER (OR BISHOP HATTO'S TOWER) AND EHRENFELS.]

[Illustration: THE LORELEI ROCK.]

Other excursions were made by the Bornhofen visitors, one up a hill on
the opposite side, over sixteen hundred feet high, whence a fine distant
view of the Mosel Valley was seen, and one also to the church of St.
Apollinaris, at Remagen, at some distance down the river, where are
"some fine frescoes by German artists covering the whole interior of
the church. One artist painted four or five large ones of the
Crucifixion, Resurrection and other events relating to the life of Our
Lord; a second several of the life of St. Apollinaris, and two others
some of Our Lady and various saints, one set being patron saints of the
founder's children, whom I think we saw at Baden--Carl Egon, Count
Fürstenberg-Stammheim.... The family-house stands close to the church,
or one of his houses, and seems to have been made into a Franciscan
convent: the monks are now banished and the church deserted, a _custode_
(guardian) in charge. We went one day to Limburg to see the bishop of
this diocese, a dear old man who only speaks German, so E---- and
C---- carried on all the conversation. The cathedral is a fine old Norman
building with seven towers: it is undergoing restoration, and the
remains of old frescoes under the whitewash are the ground-work of
renewed ones. Where an old bit is perfect enough it is left."

[Illustration: A STREET IN LIMBURG.]

Camp, a mile from Bornhofen, is an insignificant place enough, but
claiming to have been a Roman camp, and having an old convent as
picturesque as those of far-famed and much-visited towns. The same
irregular windows, roofed turrets springing up by the side of tall
gables, a corner-shrine of Our Lady and Child, with vines and ivy making
a niche for it, mossy steps, a broken wall with trailing vines and steep
stone-roofed recess, probably an old niche,--such is a sketch of what
would make a thoroughly good picture; but in this land there are so many
such that one grows too familiar with them to care for the sight. Nearly
opposite is Boppard, a busy ancient town, with a parish church beautiful
enough for a cathedral--St. Severin's church, with carved choir-stalls
and a double nave--and the old Benedictine monastery for women, now a
cold-water cure establishment. Boppard has its legend of a shadowy
Templar and a faithless bridegroom challenged by the former, who turned
out to be the forsaken bride herself; but of these legends, one so like
the other, this part of the Rhine is full. The next winding of the
stream shows us Oberspay, with a romantic tavern, carved pillars
supporting a windowed porch, and a sprawling kind of roof; the "King's
Stool," a modern restoration of the mediæval pulpit or platform of stone
supported by pillars, with eighteen steps and a circumference of forty
ells, where the Rhenish prince-archbishops met to choose the temporal
sovereigns who were in part their vassals; Oberlahnstein, a town famous
for its possession in perfect repair of the ancient fortifications;
Lahneck, now a private residence, once the property of the Templars;
Stolzenfels, of which we have anticipated a glimpse; the island of
Oberwörth, with an old convent of St. Magdalen, and in the distance
frowning Ehrenbreitstein, the fortress of Coblenz.

Turning up the course of the Lahn, we get to the neighborhood of a small
but famous bathing-place, Ems, the cradle of the Franco-Prussian war,
where the house in which Emperor William lodged is now shown as an
historic memento, and effaces the interest due to the old gambling
Kursaal. The English chapel, a beautiful small stone building already
ivied; the old synagogue, a plain whitewashed building, where the
service is conducted in an orthodox but not very attractive manner; the
pretty fern- and heather-covered woods, through which you ride on
donkeyback; the gardens, where a Parisian-dressed crowd airs itself late
in the afternoon; all the well-known adjuncts of a spa, and the most
delightful baths I ever saw, where in clean little chambers you step
down three steps into an ample marble basin sunk in the floor, and may
almost fancy yourself a luxurious Roman of the days of Diocletian,--such
is Ems. But its environs are full of wider interest. There is Castle
Schaumburg, where for twenty years the archduke Stephen of Austria,
palatine of Hungary, led a useful and retired life, making his house as
orderly and seemly as an English manor-house, and more interesting to
the strangers, whose visits he encouraged, by the collections of
minerals, plants, shells and stuffed animals and the miniature
zoological and botanical gardens which he kept up and often added to. I
spent a day there thirteen years ago, ten years before he died, lamented
by his poor neighbors, to whom he was a visible providence. Another
house of great interest is the old Stein mansion in the little town of
Nassau, the home of the upright and patriotic minister of that name,
whose memory is a household word in Germany. The present house is a
comfortable modern one--a _château_ in the French sense of the word--but
the old shattered tower above the town is the cradle of the family. At
the village of Frücht is the family-vault and the great man's monument,
a modern Gothic canopy, somewhat bald and characterless, but bearing a
fine statue of Stein by Schwanthaler, and an inscription in praise of
the "unbending son of bowed-down Fatherland." He came of a good stock,
for thus runs his father's funeral inscription, in five alliterative
German rhymes. I can give it but lamely:

    His nay was nay, and steady,
    His yea was yea, and ready:
    Of his promise ever mindful,
    His lips his conscience ne'er belied,
    And his word was bond and seal.

Stein was born in the house where he retired to spend his last years in
study: his grave and pious nature is shown in the mottoes with which he
adorned his home: "A tower of strength is our God" over the house-door,
and in his library, above his books and busts and gathering of
life-memorials, "Confidence in God, singleness of mind and
righteousness." His contemporaries called him, in a play upon his name
which, as such things go, was not bad, "The foundation-_stone_ of right,
the stumbling-_stone_ of the wicked, and the precious _stone_ of
Germany." Arnstein and its old convent, now occupied by a solitary
priest: Balduinenstein and its rough-hewn, cyclopean-looking ruin,
standing over the mossy picturesque water-mill; the marble-quarries near
Schaumburg, worked by convicts; Diez and its conglomeration of houses
like a puzzle endowed with life,--are all on the way to Limburg, the
episcopal town, old and tortuous, sleepy and alluring, with its shady
streets, its cathedral of St. George and its monument of the
lion-hearted Conrad or Kuno, surnamed Shortbold (Kurzbold), a nephew of
Emperor Conrad, a genuine woman-hater, a man of giant strength but
dwarfish height, who is said to have once strangled a lion, and at
another time sunk a boatful of men with one blow of his spear. The
cathedral, the same visited by our Bornhofen friends, has other
treasures--carved stalls and a magnificent image of Our Lord of the
sixteenth century, a Gothic baptismal font and a richly-sculptured
tabernacle, as well as a much older image of _St. George and the
Dragon_, supposed by some to refer to the legendary existence of
monsters in the days when Limburg was heathen. Some such idea seems also
not to have been remote from the fancy of the mediæval sculptor who
adorned the brave Conrad's monument with such elaborately monstrous
figures: it was evidently no lack of skill and delicacy that dictated
such a choice of supporters, for the figure of the hero is lifelike,
dignified and faithful to the minute description of his features and
stature left us by his chronicler, while the beauty of the leaf-border
of the slab and of the capitals of the short pillars is such as to
excite the envy of our best modern carvers.

[Illustration: CONRAD'S MONUMENT, LIMBURG CATHEDRAL.]

                              LADY BLANCHE MURPHY.



EDINBURGH JOTTINGS.


Whenever Scott's landau went up the Canongate, his coachman knew without
special instructions that the pace must be a walk; and no funeral, says
Lockhart, ever moved more slowly, for wherever the great enthusiast
might turn his gaze there was recalled to his mind some tradition of
blood and mystery at which his eye would sparkle and his cheek glow. How
by the force of his genius he inoculated the world with his enthusiasm
about the semi-savage Scotia of the past is a well-known story:
thousands of tourists, more or less struck with the Scott madness,
yearly wander through the streets of old Edinburgh; and although within
the quarter of a century since Sir Walter's death many memorials of the
past have been swept away under the pressure of utility or necessity,
the Old Town still poses remarkably well, and, gathering her rags and
tatters about her, contrives to keep up a strikingly picturesque
appearance.

[Illustration: THE CASTLE AND ALLAN RAMSAY'S HOUSE.]

The Old Town of Edinburgh is built upon a wedge-shaped hill, the Castle
occupying the highest point, the head of the wedge, and the town
extending along the crest, which slopes gradually down toward the east,
to Holyrood Palace in the plain. Lawnmarket, High street and Canongate
now form one continuous street, which, running along the crest of the
hill, may be considered as the backbone of the town, with wynds and
closes radiating on each side like the spines of the vertebræ. The
closes are courts, culs-de-sac--the wynds, thoroughfares. These
streets--courts where, in the past, lived the nobility and gentry of
Edinburgh--are now, for the most part, given up to squalor and misery,
and look like stage-scenes perpetually "set" for melodramatic horrors.
The late Dr. Thomas Guthrie, whose parish included a large portion of
this Egypt, used often to illustrate his eloquence with graphic
word-pictures suggested by his experiences in these dark places. "The
unfurnished floor," he writes, "the begrimed and naked walls, the
stifling, sickening atmosphere, the patched and dusty window--through
which a sunbeam, like hope, is faintly stealing--the ragged,
hunger-bitten and sad-faced children, the ruffian man, the heap of straw
where some wretched mother in muttering dreams sleeps off last night's
debauch or lies unshrouded and uncoffined in the ghastliness of a
hopeless death, are sad scenes. We have often looked on them, and they
appear all the sadder for the restless play of fancy excited by some
vestiges of a fresco-painting that still looks out from the foul and
broken plaster, the massive marble rising over the cold and cracked
hearthstone, an elaborately-carved cornice too high for shivering cold
to pull it down for fuel, some stucco flowers or fruit yet pendent on
the crumbling ceiling. Fancy, kindled by these, calls up the gay scenes
and actors of other days, when beauty, elegance and fashion graced these
lonely halls, and plenty smoked on groaning tables, and where these few
cinders, gathered from the city dustheap, are feebly smouldering,
hospitable fires roared up the chimney."

[Illustration: OLD EDINBURGH BY NIGHT.]

These houses are built upon the "flat" system, some of the better ones
having a court in the centre like French houses, and turrets at the
corners for the circular staircases connecting the different flats.
Fires and improvements are rapidly sweeping them away, and the traveler
regrets or not their disappearance, according as his views may be
sentimental or sanitarian. They are truly ill adapted to modern ideas of
hygiene, or to those cunning modern devices which sometimes poison their
very inventors. While we may smile at our ancestors' free and easy way
of pitching things out of the window, we should at least remember that
they knew nothing of the modern plague of sewer-gas stealing its
insidious way into the apparently best-regulated households. But without
entering upon the vexed question of hygiene, the fact is that where
there is no reason for propping up a tottering roof except that it once
sheltered some bloody, cattle-stealing chieftain of the Border,
utilitarian sentiments carry the day; nor ought any enthusiast to deny
that the heart-shaped figure on the High street pavement, marking the
spot where the Heart of Mid Lothian once stood, is a more cheerful sight
than would be presented by the foul walls of that romantic jail.

[Illustration: RIDDLE'S CLOSE, WHERE HUME COMMENCED HIS "HISTORY OF
ENGLAND."]

The modes of life in old Edinburgh have been amply illustrated by many
writers. Among the novel-writers, Scott and Miss Ferrier have especially
dwelt upon them. The tavern-haunting habits of the gentlemen are
pleasantly depicted in the "high jinks" in _Guy Mannering_, and the
depth of potations may be estimated by Burns's "Song of the Whistle." As
to the ladies, we should not have found their assemblies very hilarious,
where partners for the dance were obtained by drawing tickets, and the
lucky or unlucky swain danced one solemn minuet with his lady, and was
not expected to quit her side during the evening--

    Through a long night to watch fair Delia's will,
    The same dull swain was at her elbow still.

The huge stack of buildings called James's Court is associated with the
names of Boswell and of Hume. Half of it has been destroyed by fire,
and precisely that half in which these two worthies once dwelt, but
there is quite enough of it left to show what a grim monster it was,
and, for that matter, still is. In Boswell's time it was a fine thing to
have a flat in James's Court. Here Boswell was living when Dr. Johnson
came to visit him. Boswell, having received a note from Johnson
announcing his arrival, hastened to the inn, where he found the great
man had just thrown his lemonade out of the window, and had nearly
knocked down the waiter for sweetening the said lemonade without the aid
of the sugar-tongs.

"Mr. Johnson and I walked arm-in-arm up the High street," says Boswell,
"to my house in James's Court: it was a dusky night: I could not prevent
his being assailed by the evening effluvia of Edinburgh. As we marched
slowly along he grumbled in my ear, 'I smell you in the dark.'"

Mrs. Boswell had never seen Johnson before, and was by no means charmed
with him, as Johnson was not slow to discover. In a matrimonial aside
she whispered to her husband, "I have seen many a bear led by a man, but
I never before saw a man led by a bear." No doubt her provocations were
great, and she wins the compassionate sympathy of all good housekeepers
when they read of Ursa Major brightening up the candles by turning the
melted wax out on the carpet.

Many years after this, but while Boswell was still living in James's
Court, a lad named Francis Jeffrey one night helped to carry the great
biographer home--a circumstance in the life of a gentleman much more of
an every-day or every-night affair at that time than at present. The
next day Boswell patted the lad on the head, and kindly added, "If you
go on as you have begun, you may live to be a Bozzy yourself yet."

The stranger who enters what is apparently the ground-floor of one of
these houses on the north side of High street is often surprised to find
himself, without having gone up stairs, looking from a fourth-story
window in the rear. This is due to the steep slope on which the houses
stand, and gives them the command of a beautiful view, including the New
Town, and extending across the Firth of Forth to the varied shores of
Fife. From his flat in James's Court we find David Hume, after his
return from France, writing to Adam Smith, then busy at Kirkcaldy about
the _Wealth of Nations_, "I am glad to have come within sight of you,
and to have a view of Kirkcaldy from my windows."

Another feature of these houses is the little cells designed for
oratories or praying-closets, to which the master of the house was
supposed to retire for his devotions, in literal accordance with the
gospel injunction. David Hume's flat had two of these, for the spiritual
was relatively better cared for than the temporal in those days: plenty
of praying-closets, but _no drains_! This difficulty was got over by
making it lawful for householders, after ten o'clock at night, to throw
superfluous material out of the window--a cheerful outlook for Boswell
and others being "carried home"!

[Illustration: BUCCLEUGH PLACE, WHERE THE "EDINBURGH REVIEW" WAS
PROJECTED.]

[Illustration: COLLEGE WYND, WHERE SCOTT WAS BORN.]

At the bottom of Byre's Close a house is pointed out where Oliver
Cromwell stayed, and had the advantage of contemplating from its lofty
roof the fleet which awaited his orders in the Forth. The same house was
once occupied by Bothwell, bishop of Orkney, and is associated with the
memory of Anne, the bishop's daughter, whose sorrows are enbalmed in
plaintive beauty in the old cradle-song:

    Baloo,[A] my boy, lie still and sleep,
    It grieves me sair to see thee weep:
    If thou'lt be silent, I'll be glad;
    Thy mourning makes my heart full sad.
    Baloo, my boy, thy mother's joy,
    Thy father bred me great annoy.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

    Baloo, my boy, weep not for me,
    Whose greatest grief's for wranging thee,
    Nor pity her deservèd smart,
    Who can blame none but her fond heart;
    For too soon trusting latest finds
    With fairest tongues are falsest minds.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

    When he began to court my love,
    And with his sugared words to move,
    His tempting face and flutt'ring cheer
    In time to me did not appear;
    But now I see that cruel he
    Cares neither for his babe nor me.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

    Baloo, my boy, thy father's fled,
    When he the thriftless son has played:
    Of vows and oaths forgetful, he
    Preferred the wars to thee and me;
    But now perhaps thy curse and mine
    Makes him eat acorns with the swine.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

    Nay, curse not him: perhaps now he,
    Stung with remorse, is blessing thee;
    Perhaps at death, for who can tell
    But the great Judge of heaven and hell,
    By some proud foe has struck the blow,
    And laid the dear deceiver[B] low.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

    I wish I were into the bounds
    Where he lies smother'd in his wounds,
    Repeating, as he pants for air,
    My name, whom once he call'd his fair.
    No woman's yet so fiercely set
    But she'll forgive, though not forget.
        Baloo, Baloo, etc.

[Illustration: ANCHOR CLOSE.]

The tourist finds much to read, as he runs through old Edinburgh, in the
mottoes on the house-fronts. These are mostly of a scriptural and devout
character, such as: "Blissit.Be.God.In.Al.His.Giftis;" or,
"Blissit.Be.The.Lord.In.His.Giftis.For.Nov.And.Ever." If he peeps into
Anchor Close, where once was a famous tavern, he will find it entirely
occupied by the buildings of the _Scotsman_ newspaper, but the
mottoes have been carefully preserved and built into the walls.
The first is, "The.Lord. Is.Only.My.Svport;" a little farther
on, "O.Lord.In.The.Is.Al.My.Traist;" and over the door,
"Lord.Be.Merciful.To.Me." On other houses he may read,
"Feare.The.Lord.And.Depart.From.Evill;" "Faith.In.Chryst.Onlie.Savit;"
"My.Hoip.Is.Chryst;" "What.Ever.Me.Befall.I.Thank.The.Lord.Of.All."
There are also many in the Latin tongue, such as, "Lavs Vbique Deo;"
"Nisi Dominvs Frvstra" (the City motto);

    "Pax Intrantibvs,
    Salvs Exevntibvs."

Here is one in the vernacular:
"Gif.Ve.Died.As.Ve.Sovld.Ve.Mycht.Haif.As.Ve.Vald;" which is translated,
"If we did as we should, we might have as we would."

[Illustration: JOHN KNOX'S STUDY.]

Near the end of the High street, on the way to the Canongate, stands
John Knox's house, which has been put in order and made a show-place.
The exterior, from its exceedingly picturesque character, is more
attractive than the interior. The house had originally belonged to the
abbot of Dunfermline, and when taken by Knox a very snug little study
was added, built of wood and projecting from the front, in accordance
with an order from the magistrates, directing "with al diligence to make
ane warm studye of dailles to the minister John Knox, within his
hous, aboue the hall of the same, with light and wyndokis
thereunto, and al uther necessaris." The motto of this house is
"Lvfe.God.Abvfe.Al.And.Yi.Nychtbovr.As.Yi.Self." A curious image at one
corner was long thought to represent Knox preaching, and probably still
does so in the popular belief; but others now think it represents Moses.
It is an old man kneeling, with one hand resting on a tablet, and with
the other pointing up to a stone above him carved to resemble the sun,
and having on its disk the name of the Deity in three languages:
"[Greek: THEOS].Deus.God."

Of the style of Knox's preaching, even when he was enfeebled by
ill-health, one gets a good idea from the following passage in James
Melville's diary: "And by the said Rickart and an other servant, lifted
up to the pulpit whar he behovit to lean, at his first entrie; bot or he
had done with his sermon, he was sa active and vigorous, that he was lyk
to ding that pulpit in blads and flie out of it."

[Illustration: ROOM IN WHICH KNOX DIED.]

Passing on down Canongate, once the court suburb, we come to Moray
House, the former residence of the earls of Moray, and at one time
occupied by Cromwell. It is now used for a school, and is in much better
preservation than many of its neighbors. At the very bottom of the
Canongate, not far from Holyrood House, stands the White Horse Inn. The
house has not been an inn for many years, but was chosen by Scott as the
quarters of Captain Waverley: its builders probably thought little of
beauty when they built it, yet squalor, dilapidation and decay have
given it the elements of the picturesque, and the fact that Scott has
mentioned it is sufficient to nerve the tourist to hold his nose and
admire.

A black, gaunt, forbidding-looking structure near at hand was once the
residence of the dukes of Queensberry. Charles, the third duke, was born
in it: it is his duchess, Lady Catherine Hyde, whose pranks are so
frequently recorded in Horace Walpole's letters--"very clever, very
whimsical, and just not mad." Their Graces did not often occupy their
Scottish residences, but in 1729, the lord chamberlain having refused
his license to Gay's play, _Polly_, a continuation of the _Beggar's
Opera_, the duke and duchess took Gay's part so warmly as to leave the
court and retire to Queensberry House, bringing the poet with them.

[Illustration: WHITE HORSE INN.]

The duchess was much sung by the poets of her day, among them Prior, who
is now so little read that we may recall a few of his once well-known
verses:

    "Shall I thumb holy books, confined
      With Abigails forsaken?
    Kitty's for other things designed,
      Or I am much mistaken.
    Must Lady Jenny frisk about,
      And visit with her cousins?
    At balls must she make all the rout,
      And bring home hearts by dozens?

    "What has she better, pray, than I?
      What hidden charms to boast,
    That all mankind for her should die,
      Whilst I am scarce a toast?
    Dearest mamma, for once let me,
      Unchained, my fortune try:
    I'll have my earl as well as she,
      Or know the reason why.

    "I'll soon with Jenny's pride quit score,
      Make all her lovers fall:
    They'll grieve I was not loosed before--
      She, I was loosed at all."
    Fondness prevailed, mamma gave way:
      Kitty, at heart's desire,
    Obtained the chariot for a day,
      And set the world on fire!

On the death of Duke Charles, Queensberry House came into the possession
of his cousin, the earl of March, a singular man-about-town in London,
known as "Old Q.:" he stripped it of all its ornaments, without and
within, and sold it to the government for a barracks. It is now used as
a house of refuge. On its gate are the following notices: "White-seam
sewing neatly executed." "Applications for admission by the destitute
any lawful day from 10 to 12." "Bread and soup supplied from 1 to 3,
afternoon. Porridge supplied from 8 to 9, morning, 6 to 7, evening."
"Night Refuge open at 7 P.M. No admission on Sundays." "No person
allowed more than three nights' shelter in one month." Such are the
mottoes that now adorn the house which sheltered Prior's Kitty.

A striking object in the same vicinity is the Canongate Tolbooth, with
pepper-box turrets and a clock projecting from the front on iron
brackets, which have taken the place of the original curiously-carved
oaken beams. Executions sometimes took place in front of this building,
which led wags to find a grim joke in its motto: "Sic.Itvr.Ad.Astra." A
more frequent place of execution was the Girth Cross, near the foot of
the Canongate, which marked the limit of the right of sanctuary
belonging to the abbey of Holyrood. At the Girth Cross, Lady Warriston
was executed for the murder of her husband, which has been made the
subject of many ballads:

    My mother was an ill woman:
      In fifteen years she married me.
    I hadna wit to guide a man:
      Alas! ill counsel guided me.

    O Warriston! O Warriston!
      I wish that ye may sink fire in:
    I was but bare fifteen years auld
      When first I entered your gates within.

    I hadna been a month married,
      Till my gude lord went to the sea:
    I bare a bairn ere he came hame,
      And set it on the nourice knee.

    But it fell ance upon a day
      That my gude lord return'd from sea:
    Then I did dress in the best array,
      As blythe as ony bird on tree.

    I took my young son in my arms,
      Likewise my nourice me forebye,
    And I went down to yon shore-side,
      My gude lord's vessel I might spy.

    My lord he stood upon the deck,
      I wyte he hail'd me courteouslie:
    "Ye are thrice welcome, my lady gay:
      Wha'se aught that bairn on your knee?"

    She turn'd her right and roundabout,
      Says, "Why take ye sic dreads o' me?
    Alas! I was too young married
      To love another man but thee."

    "Now hold your tongue, my lady gay:
      Nae mair falsehoods ye'll tell to me;
    This bonny bairn is not mine;
      You've loved another while I was on sea."

    In discontent then hame she went,
      And aye the tear did blin' her e'e:
    Says, "Of this wretch I'll be revenged
      For these harsh words he said to me."

    She's counsel'd wi' her father's steward,
      What way she cou'd revenged be:
    Bad was the counsel then he gave:
      It was to gar her gude lord dee.

    The nourice took the deed in hand:
      I wat she was well paid her fee:
    She keist the knot, and the loop she ran
      Which soon did gar this young lord dee.

[Illustration: HOLYROOD AND BURNS'S MONUMENT.]

Another version has:

    The nurice she knet the knot,
      And oh, she knet it sicker:
    The ladie did gie it a twig,
      Till it began to wicker.

The murder was committed on the 2d of July, 1600, and with the speedy
justice of that time the punishment followed on the 5th. The lady was
sentenced to be "wooried at the stake and brint," but her relatives had
influence enough to secure a modification of the sentence, so that she
was beheaded by the "maiden," a form of guillotine introduced by the
Regent Morton. The original sentence was executed upon the nurse, who
had no powerful relatives.

[Illustration: STONE ON WHICH THE COVENANT WAS SIGNED.]

Directly opposite the Canongate Tolbooth is a very antiquated dwelling,
with three gables to the street, which converses with the passer-by on
envy and backbiting. It begins: "Hodie.Mihi.Cras.Tibi.Cur.Igitur.Curas"
("To-day, mine; to-morrow, thine; why then care?"). As if premising an
unsatisfactory answer, it continues: "Ut Tu Linguae Tuae, Sic Ego Mear.
Aurium, Dominus Sum." ("As thou of thy tongue, so I of my ears, am
lord"), and finally takes refuge in "Constanti Pectori Res Mortalium
Umbra" ("To the steadfast heart the affairs of mortals are but
shadows").

In the plain at the foot of the Canongate stands Holyrood Abbey and
Palace, which, with the exception of one wing containing Queen Mary's
apartments, has been rebuilt within comparatively modern times. The
abbey church is a crumbling ruin, although a power amid its decay, for
it possesses still the right of sanctuary. This refuge offered by the
Church was a softening and humanizing influence when private feuds were
settled by the sword and the Far-West principle of death at sight
generally prevailed: later on, it became an abuse, and gradually
disappeared. The Holyrood sanctuary is the only one now existing in
Great Britain, but is available for insolvent debtors only: it includes
the precincts of the palace and the Queen's Park (five miles in
circumference), but it contains no buildings except in that portion of
the precincts extending from the palace to the foot of Canongate, about
one hundred and thirty yards in a direct line. Within this limited
district the debtor seeks his lodging, has the Queen's Park for his
recreation, and on Sundays is free to go where he likes, as on that day
he cannot be molested. It was a curious relic of old customs to read in
Edinburgh newspapers in the year 1876 the following extract from a
debtor's letter, in which he makes his terms with the sheriff: "However
desirous I am to obey the order of the sheriff to attend my examination,
I am sorry to be obliged to intimate that in consequence of the
vindictive and oppressive proceedings of some of my creditors I cannot
present myself in court at the diet fixed unless protection from
personal diligence be granted. I will have much pleasure, however, in
attending the court in the event of the sheriff granting a special
warrant to bring me from the sanctuary, which warrant shall protect me
against arrest for debt and other civil obligations while under
examination, and on the way to and from the place of examination." The
sheriff granted the warrant.

From Holyrood we fancy the traveler next remounting the hill into the
Old Town, and seeking out the churchyard of Greyfriars, whose
monuments, full of interest to the student and the antiquary, are in
themselves an epitome of Scottish history. The church has been ravaged
by fire and rebuilt, so that it retains but little antiquity: the
churchyard, on the other hand, has seen few changes except in the
increase of its monuments as time has passed on.

Here the Solemn League and Covenant was entered into. It was first read
in the church, and agreed to by all there, and then handed to the crowd
without, who signed it on the flat tombstones.

Among the most conspicuous monuments in this churchyard are, on the one
hand, that to those who died for their fidelity to this Covenant, and on
the other the tomb of Sir George Mackenzie, king's advocate and public
prosecutor of the Covenanters.

On the Martyrs' Monument, as it is called, one reads: "From May 27th,
1661, that the most noble marquis of Argyle was beheaded, until Feb.
18th, 1688, there were executed in Edinburgh about one hundred noblemen,
gentlemen, ministers and others: the most of them lie here.

    "But as for them no cause was to be found
    Worthy of death, but only they were sound,
    Constant, and steadfast, zealous, witnessing
    For the prerogatives of Christ their King,
    Which truths were sealed by famous Guthrie's head."

And so on.

Dr. Thomas Guthrie, who, as we have seen, found much inspiration in the
scenes of his daily walks, sought to trace his origin back to this
Guthrie of the Martyrs' Monument. "I failed," he wrote, "yet am
conscious that the idea and probability of this has had a happy
influence on my public life, in determining me to contend and suffer, if
need be, for the rights of Christ's crown and the liberties of His
Church."

The learning and accomplishments of Sir George Mackenzie were forgotten
amid the religious animosities of his day, and he came down to posterity
as the terror of nursery-maids and a portentous bugaboo under the name
of Bloody Mackenzie. It is related that the boys of the town were in the
habit of gathering at nightfall about his tomb and shouting in at the
keyhole,

    Bluidy Mackenzie, come out if ye daur:
    Lift the sneck and draw the bar!

after which they would scatter, as if they feared the tenant might take
them at their word. The tomb is a handsome circular Roman temple, now
much dilapidated by weather and soot, and so dark and sombre as to make
it very uncanny in the gloaming, especially to one approaching it with
the view of shouting "Bluidy Mackenzie" through the keyhole. This
popular superstition was once turned to account by a youth under
sentence of death for burglary. His friends aided him in escaping from
prison, and provided him with a key to this mausoleum, where he passed
six weeks in the tomb with the Bluidy Mackenzie--a situation of horror
made tolerable only as a means of escape from death. Food was brought to
him at night, and when the heat of pursuit was over he got to a vessel
and out of the country.

[Illustration: MACKENZIE'S TOMB.]

The New Town of Edinburgh is separated from the Old Town by the ravine
of the North Loch, over which are thrown the bridges by which the two
towns are connected. The loch has been drained and is now occupied by
the Public Gardens and by the railway. The New Town is substantially the
work of the last half of the past century and the first half of the
present one--a period which sought everywhere except at home for its
architectural models. In some of the recent improvements in the Old Town
very pretty effects have been produced by copying the better features of
the ancient dwellings all around them, but the grandiloquent ideas of
the Georgian era could not have been content with anything so simple and
homespun as this. Its ideal was the cold and pompous, and it succeeded
in giving to the New-Town streets that distant and repellent air of
supreme self-satisfaction which makes the houses appear to say to the
curious looker-on, "Seek no farther, for in us you find the perfectly
correct thing." The embodiment of this spirit may be seen in the bronze
statue of George IV. by Chantrey, in George street: the artist has
caught the pert strut so familiar in the portraits, at sight of which
one involuntarily exclaims, "Behold the royal swell!"

[Illustration: THE NORTH BRIDGE.]

But the New Town has two superb features, about whose merits all are
agreed: we need hardly say these are Princes street and the Calton
Hill. Princes street extends along the brow of the hill over-hanging the
ravine which separates the two towns, and which is now occupied by
public gardens: along their grassy slopes the eye wanders over trees and
flowers to the great rock which o'ertops the greenery, bearing aloft the
Castle as its crown, while from the Castle the Old Town, clustering
along the height, streams away like a dark and deeply-colored train. The
Calton Hill offers to the view a wide-spreading panorama. At our feet
are the smoking chimneys of Auld Reekie, from which we gladly turn our
eyes to the blue water and the shores of Fife, or seek out in the shadow
of Salisbury Crags and Arthur's Seat the tottering arch of Holyrood
Abbey. The hill is well dotted over,

    All up and down and here and there,
    With Lord-knows-what's of round and square;

which on examination prove to be monuments to the great departed. A
great change has taken place in the prevalent taste since they were
erected, and they are not now pointed out to the stranger with fond
pride, as in the past generation. The best one is that to Dugald
Stewart, an adaptation, the guide-books say, of the Choragic Monument of
Lysicrates. The all-pervading photograph has made it so familiar that it
comes upon one as an old friend.

The Burns Monument is a circular edifice with columns and a cupola. It
has all the outward semblance of a tomb, so that one is rather startled
to find it tenanted by a canny Scot--a live one--who presides with
becomingly sepulchral gravity over a twopenny show of miscellaneous
trumpery connected with Robert Burns. Everywhere in old Edinburgh we
have seen going on the inevitable struggle between utility and
sentiment: at Burns's Monument it ceases, and we conclude our ramble at
this point, where the sentimentalist and the utilitarian shake hands,
the former deeply sympathizing with the sentiment which led to the
building of the monument, while the latter fondly admires the ingenuity
which can turn even a cenotaph to account.

                                    ALFRED S. GIBBS.

FOOTNOTES:

[A] Baloo is a lullaby, supposed to be from the French _Bas, là le
loup_--"Lie still, the wolf is coming."

[B] The "dear deceiver" was said to have been her cousin, the Hon.
Alexander Erskine, brother to the earl of Mar. He came to a violent
death, although not in the manner suggested in the ballad. While
stationed at Dunglass Castle, engaged in collecting levies for the army
of the Covenanters, an angry page thrust a red-hot poker into the
powder-magazine, and blew him up with a number of others, so that there
was "never bone nor hyre seen of them again."



A LAW UNTO HERSELF.


CHAPTER I.

On a raw, cloudy afternoon in early spring a few years ago a
family-carriage was driven slowly down a lonely road in one of the
outlying suburbs of Philadelphia, stopping at last in front of an
apparently vacant house. This house was built of gray stone, and stood
back from the road, surrounded by a few sombre pines and much rank
shrubbery: shrubbery and trees, and the house itself, had long been
abandoned to decay.

"Heah am de place, sah," said the footman, opening the carriage-door.

An old gentleman in shabby clothes, embellished dramatically by a red
necktie, an empty sleeve pinned to his breast, sprang out briskly; a
lady followed, and stood beside him: then a younger man, his head
muffled in a close fur cap, a yellow shawl wrapped about his neck,
looked feebly out of the window. His face, which a pair of pale,
unkindled eyes had never lighted since he was born, had been incomplete
of meaning in his best days, and long illness had only emphasized its
weakness. He half rose, sat down again, stared uncertainly at the house,
yawned nervously, quite indifferent to the fact that the lady stood
waiting his pleasure. His money and his bodily sufferings--for he was
weighted heavily with both--were quite enough, in his view, to give him
the right to engross the common air and the service of other men and
women. Indeed, a certain indomitable conceit thrust itself into view in
his snub nose and retreating chin, which made it highly probable that if
he had been a stout day-laborer in the road yonder, he would have been
just as complacent as now, and have patronized his fellows in the ditch.

"Will you take my arm, William?" said the old man waiting in the road.
"This is the house."

"No. I have half a mind to drop the whole matter. Why should I drag out
the secrets of the grave? God knows, I shall find them out soon enough!"

"Just so. Precisely. It's a miserable business for this April day. Now,
I don't want to advise, but shall we drive out on the Wissahickon and
fish a bit? You'll catch a perch, and Jane shall broil it over the
coals, eh?"

"Oh, of course I'm going through with it," scowling and blinking through
his eye-glasses. "But we are ten minutes before the time. I can't sit in
a draughty room waiting. Tell David to drive slowly down the road until
four, Captain Swendon."

"Certainly, certainly," with the nervous conciliatory haste of a man
long used to being snubbed.--"You hear Mr. Laidley, David?--We'll
arrange it in this way, then. Miss Fleming and I will stroll down the
road, William, until the time is up.--No, Jane," as his daughter was
going to leave the carriage. "Stay with your cousin." The captain was
his peremptory self again. Like every man conscious of his own
inability, he asserted himself by incessant managing and meddling for
his neighbors.

The carriage jolted down the rutted road. The little man inside tossed
on the well-padded cushions, and moaned and puffed spasmodically at his
cigar.

Buff and David, stiff in green and gold on the box, nodded significantly
at each other. "He's nigh unto de end," said Buff. "De gates of glory am
creakin' foh him."

"Creakin', shore nuff. But 'bout de glory I'm not so shore. Yoh see, I
knows," rubbing his gray whiskers with the end of the whip. "I have him
in charge. Mass' Swendon gib orders: 'Yoh stick by him, Dave.' 'S got no
friends: 's got no backbone. Why, wid a twinge ob toothache he squirms
like an eel in de fire--swears to make de debbil turn pale. It'll be an
awful sight when Death gits a holt on him. But I'll stick."

Captain Swendon and Miss Fleming, left alone under the pines, both
turned and looked at the house as if it were an open grave.

"So it is here the dead are to come back?" said the captain with a
feebly-jocular giggle. "We'll go down the road a bit. 'Pon my soul, the
atmosphere here is ghastly."

They struck into the meadows, sauntered through a strip of woodland
where the sparrows were chirping in the thin green boughs overhead, and,
crossing some newly-ploughed fields, came suddenly upon a row of
contract-houses, bold, upright in the mud, aggressively new and genteel.
They were tricked out with thin marble facings and steps. A drug-shop
glittered already at one end of the block, and a milliner's furbelowed
window closed the other with a red-lettered sign, which might have
served as a motto for the whole: "Here you buy your dollar's worth of
fashion for your dime of cash."

"Ah!" cried the captain, "no ghostly work here!--the last place where
one would look for any miraculous stoppage of the laws of Nature."

"Stoppage, you should say, of the social laws of 'gents' and their
ladies, which are much more inexorable," said his companion. "Oh I know
them!" glancing in at the windows, as she tramped through the yellow
mud, with keen, amused eyes. "I know just what life must be in one of
these houses--the starving music-teacher on one side of you, and the
soapboiler on the other: the wretched small servant going the rounds of
the block to whiten the steps every evening, while the mistresses sit
within in cotton lace and sleazy silks, tinkling on the piano, or
counting up the greasy passbook from the grocer's. Imagine such a life
broken in upon by a soul from the other world!"

"Yet souls go out from it into the other world. And I've known good
women who wore cheap finery and aped gentility. Of course," with a
sudden gusty energy, "_I_ don't endorse that sort of thing; and I don't
believe the dead will come back to-day. Don't mistake me," shaking his
head. The captain was always gusty and emphatic. His high-beaked,
quick-glancing face and owlish eyes were ready to punctuate other men's
thoughts with an incessant exclamation-point to bring out their true
meaning. Since he was a boy he had known that he was born a
drill-sergeant and the rest of mankind raw recruits. "Now, there's
something terribly pathetic to me," he said, "in this whole expedition
of ours. The idea of poor Will in his last days trying to catch a
glimpse of the country to which he is going!"

Cornelia Fleming nodded, and let the subject drop. She never wasted her
time by peering into death or religion. She belonged to this world, and
she knew it. A wise racer keeps to the course for which he has been
trained, and never ventures into the quagmires beyond. She stopped
beside a tiny yard where a magnolia tree spread its bare stalks and dull
white flowers over the fence, and stood on tiptoe to break a bud. The
owner of the house, an old man with a box of carpenter's tools in his
hand, opened the door at the moment. She nodded brightly to him. "I am
robbing you, sir. For a sick friend yonder," she said.

He came down quickly and loaded her with flowers, thinking he had never
heard a voice as peculiar and pleasant. The captain, a little behind,
eyed her critically from head to foot, his mouth drawn up for a
meditative whistle, as she stood on tiptoe, her arm stretched up among
the creamy buds. The loose sleeve fell back: the arm was round and
white.

"Very good! ve-ry good!" the whistle meant; "and I know the points of a
fine woman as well as any of these young fellows."

Two young fellows, coming up, lingered to glance at the jimp waist and
finely-turned ankle, with a shrug to each other when, passing by, they
saw her homely face.

The captain gallantly relieved her of her flowers, and paraded down the
road, head up, elbows well out, as he used, thirty years ago, to escort
pretty Virginie Morôt in the French quartier of New Orleans. It was long
since he had relished conversation as he did with this frank, generous
creature. No coquetry about her! It was like talking to a clever,
candid boy. Every man felt, in fact, with Cornelia, that she was only a
younger brother. He liked the hearty grasp of her big white hand; he
liked her honest, downright way of stating things, and her perfect
indifference to her own undeniable ugliness. Now, any other woman of her
age--thirty, eh? (with a quick critical glance)--would dye her hair: she
never cared to hide the streaks of gray through the yellow. She had
evidently long ago made up her mind that love and marriage were
impossible for women as unprepossessing as she: she stepped freely up,
therefore, to level ground with men, and struck hands and made
friendships with them precisely as if she were one of themselves.

The captain quite glowed with the fervor of this friendship as he
marched along talking energetically. A certain subtle instinct of
kinship between them seemed to him to trench upon the supernatural: it
covered every thought and taste. She had a keen wit, she grasped his
finest ideas: not even Jane laughed at his jokes more heartily. She
appreciated his inventive ability: he was not sure that Jane did. There
were topics, too, on which he could touch with this mature companion
that were caviare to Jane. It was no such mighty matter if he blurted
out an oath before her, as he used to do in the army. Something, indeed,
in the very presence of the light, full figure keeping step with his
own, in the heavy odor of the magnolias and the steady regard of the
yellowish-brown eyes, revived within him an old self which belonged to
those days in the army--a self which was not the man whom his daughter
knew, by any means.

They were talking at the time, as it happened, of his military
experience: "I served under Scott in Mexico. Jane thinks me a hero, of
course. But I confess to you that I enlisted, in the first place, to
keep the wolf out of the house at home. I had spent our last dollar in
manufacturing my patent scissors, and they--well, they wouldn't cut
anything, unless--I used to suspect Atropos had borrowed them and meant
to snip the thread for me, it was stretched so tightly just then."

She looked gravely at his empty sleeve.

The captain caught the glance, and coughed uncomfortably: "Oh, I did not
lose that in the service, you understand. No such luck! Five days after
I was discharged, after I had come out of every battle with a whole
skin, I was on a railway-train going home. Collision: arm taken off at
the elbow. If it had happened just one week earlier, I should have had a
pension, and Jane--Well, Jane has had a rough time of it, Miss Fleming.
But it was my luck!"

They had returned through the woods, and were in sight again of the
house standing darkly among the pines. Two gentlemen, pacing up and down
the solitary road, came down the hill to meet them.

"Tut! tut! It is that Virginia lawyer who has come up to get into
practice here--Judge Rhodes. You know him, Miss Fleming. There's an end
to our quiet talk. That fellow besieges a woman with his click-clack:
never leaves a crack for a sensible man to edge in a word."

Miss Fleming turned her honest eyes full on his for a moment, but did
not speak. The captain's startled, foolish old heart throbbed with a
feeling which he had not known since that day in the boat on the bayou
when Virginie Morôt first put her warm little hand in his. Virginie as a
wife had been a trifle of a shrew. Love in the remembrance often has a
bitter twang. But this was friendship! How sweet were the friendship and
confidence of a woman! Pretty women of late years approached the captain
in his fatherly capacity, much to his disrelish. A man need not have his
gray hairs and rheumatism thrown in his teeth at every turn. Miss
Fleming, now, saw beneath them: she saw what a gallant young fellow he
was at heart. He looked down at her eagerly, but she was carelessly
inspecting the judge and his companion.

"Who is the fair-haired, natty little man?"

"Oh! Phil Waring, a young fellow about town. Society man. Too fond of
cards. Nice lad, but no experience: no companion for you, Miss Fleming."

A vague, subtle change passed over her. It was no definable alteration
in mind or body, yet a keener observer than the captain might have
suspected a readjustment of both to suit some possible new relation.

Mr. Waring and the judge joined them, and they all walked together
toward the house, engrossed with their errand. Miss Fleming never
expected from men the finical gallantry usually paid to young ladies,
and even the gallant Virginian did not give it to her. The captain
indeed, perceiving that she was occupied with Judge Rhodes, gave her up
to his escort. "It is almost four. I will go down the road and find the
carriage and William," he said, and left them.

Judge Rhodes, as they drew near the house, regarded it darkly: "Decay!
death and decay!" waving his pudgy red hands theatrically. "A gloomy
gate indeed, through which the dead might well choose to return."

"I should call it a badly-set stage for a poor melodrama," said Miss
Fleming coolly.

"But your character is so practical! You are fortunate in that." The
judge, who was a stout, bald man, gazed at the house with vague
abstraction and dilating nostrils. "Now, I am peculiarly susceptible to
spiritual influences. I have been since a boy as sensitive to pain, to,
ah--sympathies, to those, ah--electric cords, as Byron says, wherewith
we're darkly bound, as--as a wind-harp. I really dread the effect upon
myself of the revelations of to-day."

Miss Fleming was silent. The judge, as she knew, was one of those shrewd
common-sense men who, when lifted out of their place into the region of
sentiment or romance, swagger and generally misconduct themselves, like
a workman conscious of his ill-fitting Sunday finery.

One or two carriages drove up to the gate and stopped.

"Who are those people, Mr. Waring?" said the judge, dropping into his
ordinary tone.

Mr. Waring put on his eye-glasses. He knew everybody, and had as keen
an eye and strong an antipathy for eccentric characters in conventional
Philadelphia as a proof-reader for false type. "There is Dehr, the
German homoeopath and Spiritualist," he said in a little mild voice,
which oddly reminded Miss Fleming of the gurgling flow of new milk.
"That woman marching before him is his wife."

"I know," muttered the judge--"strong-minded. Most extraordinary women
turn up every day here. This one lectures on hygiene. Mad, undoubtedly."

"Oh no," said Waring--"very dull, good people, both of the Dehrs. Not
two ideas to share between them. But there are a dozen tow-headed
youngsters at home: they drive the old people into such out-of-the-way
courses to scratch for a living. That man in white is the great
Socialist, Schaus. The others are scientific fellows from New York and
Boston."

"I wish Van Ness was here," said the judge, nodding ponderously. "Van
Ness is better known in Richmond than any other Philadelphian, sir. Most
remarkable man. Science is well enough as far as it goes, but for clear
intelligence, give me Pliny Van Ness."

"No doubt," said Mr. Waring gravely. "Great reformer, I hear. Don't meet
him in society. Of a new family."

"Mr. Laidley objected to his coming," said Cornelia.

"He did, eh? I'm astonished at that," said the judge. "I consider Van
Ness--But Laidley had the right to object, of course. The meeting is one
of the captain's famous schemes--to amuse Laidley. But they tell me that
he knows he is dying, and has determined to bring a certain spirit out
of the other world to ask an important question."

"I should think," said Miss Fleming dryly, "Mr. Laidley would always
require supernatural aid to make up his mind for him. After I talk to
him I have the feeling that I have been handling froth. Not clean froth
either." When Miss Fleming made the men and women about her the subjects
of her skill in dissection, her voice took a neat incisive edge,
suggestive of the touch of a scalpel. Little Mr. Waring, pulling his
moustache thoughtfully, studied her for a moment without reply.

"Hoh!" laughed the judge. "You have a keen eye! There can be no doubt,"
suddenly sobering, "that Laidley has been uncommonly fast. But his blood
is good--none better in Maryland. High-toned family, the Laidleys. Mr.
Waring here could give you his life chapter by chapter if he would. But
he would skip over the dirty bits as carefully as he is doing in the
road."

"Laidley's life is so very nearly over," suggested Mr. Waring quietly.

There was an awkward silence of a moment.

"Now, I can't understand," blustered the judge, "how Captain Swendon can
nurse that fellow as tenderly as he is doing. I've got my share of
humanity and forgiveness, and all that. But if any man had thrust my
wife and child out of their property, as he has done, he had better have
kept out of my sight, sir. I know all about them, you see, for two
generations. Captain's wife was a New Orleans girl--Virginia Morôt. It
wasn't a matter of property: it was starvation. Poor little
Virginie--pretty creature she was too!--would have been alive to-day,
there's no doubt of it, if she could have had proper food and medicines.
And there's his daughter! What kind of a life has she had for a girl
with such blood in her veins? Why, if I should tell you the sum on which
that child has supported herself and her father in Baltimore and here
since her mother died, you wouldn't believe me. And Laidley did nothing
for them. Not a penny! Under the circumstances it was a crime for him to
be alive."

"What were the circumstances?" asked Miss Fleming.

"The property, you understand, was old Morôt's--Morôt of New Orleans.
Virginie was his only child: she married Swendon, and her father came to
live with them in Baltimore. The two men were at odds from the first
day. Old Morôt was a keen, pig-headed business-man: he knew nothing
outside of the tobacco-trade; worked in the counting-house all day; his
one idea of pleasure was to swill port and terrapin half the night.
Swendon--Well, you know the captain. He was a brilliant young fellow in
those days, full of ideas that never came to anything--an invention
every month which was to make his fortune. They quarreled, of course the
wife sided with her husband, and Morôt, in a fit of rage, left the whole
property to his nephew, Will Laidley. When he was on his deathbed,
however, the old man relented and sent for Laidley. It was too late to
alter the will, but he charged him to do justice to his daughter.
Laidley has told me that much himself. But it never occurred to him that
justice meant anything more than to keep the estate, and allow it at his
death to revert to Jane and her father."

"Well, well!" cried Mr. Waring hastily, "that cannot be far off now.
Laidley is so nearly a thing of the past, judge, that we might afford to
bury his faults with him, decently out of sight."

"I can't put out of sight the years of want for Virginie and her child
while he was throwing their money to the dogs in every gambling-hell in
Baltimore and New York. Why, the story was so well known that when he
came down to Richmond he was not recognized, sir! Not recognized. He
felt it. Left the county like a whipped cur."

"Yet, legally, the money was his own," remarked Cornelia.

"Oh, legally, I grant you! But morally, now--" The judge had counted on
Miss Fleming's sympathy in his story. Only the day before he had seen
the tears come to her eyes over his hurt hound. He was disappointed that
she took little Jane's misfortunes so coolly. "Of course this sort of
crime is unappreciable in the courts. But society, Virginia society,
knows how to deal with it."

"I happen to know," said Waring, "that Laidley's will was made a year
ago, leaving the whole property to Miss Swendon."

"And he knows that in the mean time she is barely able to keep herself
and her father alive. Pah-h!"

"Really, Jane has quite a dramatic history, and you are precisely the
person to tell it with effect, judge," said Miss Fleming, smiling
good-humoredly, with that peculiar affable intonation which always numbs
the hearer into a conviction that his too excessive emotion is being
humored as the antics of an ill-disciplined child.

The judge grew red.

"Yes," continued Miss Fleming, her eyes upon him, "Jane _is_ pretty.
Your zeal is excusable." The road was muddy at this point, and she
passed on in front of them, picking her steps.

"Damn it!" said the judge, "they're all alike! No woman can be just to a
pretty face. I thought this girl had sense enough to lift her above such
petty jealousy."

"She is not jealous," said Waring, looking critically at her back as he
arranged his thin tow-colored moustache. "She is an Arab among her own
sex. It's a common type in this part of the country. She fraternizes
with men, horses and Nature, and sneers at other women as she would at
artificial flowers and perfumery. I don't know Miss Fleming, but I know
her class very well."

The Virginian, whose blood revolted at this censure of a lady, rushed to
the rescue: "She's honest, at any rate. No mean feminine tricks about
her. She's offensively truthful. And, after all, she's right: Swendon is
a good-for-nothing, a well-born tramp; and Jane is hardly a subject for
pity. She's a remarkably healthy girl; a little dull, but with more
staying power in her than belongs to a dozen of those morbid,
strong-minded women of yours in the North. I suppose I do let my
sympathy run away with me."

They joined Cornelia and entered the broken gate. The door of the house
swung open at a touch. Within were bare halls and rooms covered with
dust, the floors of which creaked drearily under their tread. Following
the sound of stifled voices, they went up to a large upper chamber. The
walls of this room were stained almost black; a thick carpet deadened
the floor; the solid wooden shutters were barred and heavily curtained.
They made their way to the farther end of the room, a little apart from
a group of dark figures who talked together in whispers. Miss Fleming
noticed a nervous trepidation in the manner of both men, and instantly
became grave, as though she too were more deeply moved than she cared to
show.

The whispers ceased, and the silence was growing oppressive when steps
were heard upon the stairs.

"Hoh!" puffed the judge. "Here is Laidley at last."


CHAPTER II.

It was not Laidley who entered, but Mrs. Combe, then the most-famous
clairvoyant in the United States. According to statements of men both
shrewd and honest she had lately succeeded in bringing the dead back to
them in actual bodily presence. The voice was heard, then the spirit
slowly grew into matter beside them. They could feel and see its warm
flesh, its hair and clothing, and even while they held it it melted
again into the impalpable air, and was gone. The account was attested by
persons of such integrity and prominence as to command attention from
scientific men. They knew, of course, that it was a trick, but the trick
must be so well managed as to be worth the trouble of exposure. Hence,
Mrs. Combe upon her entrance was received with silent, keen attention.

She was a tall pillar-like woman, with some heavy drapery of black
velvet or cloth about her: there were massive coils of coarse black
hair, dead narrow eyes of the same color, a closely-shut jaw: no point
of light in the figure, but a rope of unburnished gold about her neck.
She stood with her hands dropped at her sides, immovable, while her
husband, a greasy little manikin with a Jewish face, turned on the light
and waved the attention of the audience to her: "This is Miriam Combe,
the first person since the Witch of Endor who has succeeded in
materializing the shpirits of the dead. Our meeting here to-day is under
peculiar shircumstances. A zhentleman unknown to me and Mrs. Combe, but
who, I am told, is near death, desires to recall the shpirit of a dead
friend. Zhentlemans will reconize the fact that the thing we propose to
do depends upon the states of minds and matters about us. If these
elements are disturbed by unbelief or by too much light or noise when
the soul shtruggling to return wants silence and darkness, why--it
cannot make for itself a body--dat's all."

"You compel belief, in a word, before you prove to us that we ought to
believe," said a professor from a Baptist college in New Jersey, smiling
blandly down upon him. "Scientifically--"

"I knows noting of scientifics. I knows dat my wife hash de power to
ashist de souls to clode demselves wid matter. I don't pretend to
explain where she got dat power, I don't know what ish dat power: I only
know she hash it. If zhentlemans will submit to the conditions, they
shall zhoodge for demselves."

"Now, the ignorance of this man impresses me favorably," said the
professor to his friends. "He is evidently incapable of inventing a
successful trick even of conjuring. If any great unknown force of Nature
has chosen him or his wife as tools, we should not despise the
manifestation because the tools are very gross matter. They are the
steel wire charged with the lightning, perhaps."

Dr. Dehr came forward and touched the motionless woman, shaking his head
solemnly: "She is highly charged with electricity now, sir. The air is
vital, as I might say, with spiritual presences. I have no doubt,
gentlemen, before we part, that we shall see one of the most remarkable
phenomena of the nineteenth century."

"How well she poses!" whispered Miss Fleming to the judge. "But the
stage-properties are bad: the velvet is cotton, and the gold
brass-gilt."

"Now, to me," said the judge emphatically, "there is a dreadful reality,
a dead look, in her face. What Poe would have made of this scene! There
was a man who could grapple with these supreme mysteries! No! that woman
undoubtedly has learned the secret of life and of death. She can afford
to be passive." The judge's very whisper was judicial, though pulpy.

It was not possible that the woman should have heard them, yet a moment
after she lifted her eyes and motioned slowly toward them.

"God bless my soul, ma'am! You don't want me!" cried the judge.

Waring half rose, laughing, but with cold chills down his backbone, and
then dropped into his seat, relieved: "You are the chosen victim, Miss
Fleming."

Cornelia went up to the medium. She was confident the whole affair was a
vulgar trick, but there was a stricture at her heart as if an iron hand
had been laid upon it. The energy went out of her step, the blood from
her face.

The woman laid her hand on her arm. "I need you," she said in a deep
voice. "You have great magnetic force: you can aid this soul to return
to life if you will. Sit there." She placed both her hands lightly on
Cornelia's forehead. Miss Fleming dropped into the seat: she could not
have done otherwise.

"Before we opens the séance," proceeded Combe, "zhentlemans can examine
de cabinet and convince demselves dere is no trick."

The cabinet was a light triangular structure of black walnut, about
seven feet in height, placed in one corner of the room, though with an
open space between it and the wall. It moved on casters: the door was on
the side facing the audience. Miss Fleming observed with amusement that
the seat given her removed her to the farthest distance from this door.

"You will notish dat dere is absolutely noting in de cabinet but a
chair--zhoost de walls and de floor and de chair. Miriam will sit there,
and de door will be closed. When it opens you will see de embodied
spirit beside her."

"Hillo!" cried the judge, "what's this behind the cabinet?"

"It is a window overlooking de garden: I had it boarded up to prevent
you sushpecting me of trickery. But you sushpect mine boards, mein
Gott! Exshamine dem, exshamine dem! Go outside."

The judge did so. "They are screwed on honestly enough," he said to the
spectators. "A ghost had need of a battering-ram to come through that
window. It opens on an area thirty feet deep."

The woman went into the cabinet and the door was closed. Steps were
heard upon the stairs.

"It ish de zhentleman who calls for de shpirit to appear," said Combe in
a whisper.

The door opened, and Laidley, supported by Captain Swendon, entered,
giving a quick appealing look about him as he halted for a moment on the
threshold. The dignity of approaching death was in his weak, ghastly
face, and the judge rose involuntarily, just as he would have stood
uncovered if a corpse had gone by. Laidley took the seat which the
captain with his usual bluster placed for him opposite the door of the
cabinet. Combe turned out the lights: the room was in absolute darkness.
The judge moved uneasily near to Waring: "Don't laugh at me, Mr. Waring.
But I really feel that there is a Presence in this room which is not
human. I wish I had listened to my wife. She does not approve of this
sort of thing at all: she thinks no good churchman should meddle with
it. But there is _something_ in the room."

"Yes, I am conscious of what you mean. But it is a physical force, not
spiritual. Not electricity, either. It is something which has never
affected my senses before. Whatever it is, it is the stock in trade of
these people."

They were ordered by Combe to join hands, and everybody obeyed excepting
the captain's daughter, who stood unnoticed by one of the curtained
windows.

A profound silence followed, broken by a stifled sob from some
over-nervous woman. The low roll of an organ filled the void and died.
After that there was no complete sound but at intervals the silence took
breath, spoke in a half-articulate wail, and was dumb again.

Pale nebulous light shone in the cabinet and faded: then a single ray
fell direct on Laidley's face. It stood out from the night around like
a bas-relief--livid, commonplace, a presentment of every-day death. Each
man present suddenly saw his own grave open, and the world beyond
brought within reach through this insignificant man.

"The spirits of many of the dead are present," said the sepulchral voice
within the cabinet. "What do you ask of them?"

Laidley's lips moved: he grasped the arms of his chair, half rose: then
he fumbled mechanically in his pocket for his cigar-case, and not
finding it sank back helplessly.

"What do you ask of them? Their time is brief."

"I'm a very ill man," he piped feebly: "the doctors give me no hope at
all. I want advice about a certain matter before--before it's too late.
It is a great wrong I have done that I want to set right."

"Can any of the dead counsel you? Or do you summon one soul to appear?"

"There is but one who knows."

"Call for her, then."

Laidley looked about him uncertainly: then he said in a hoarse whisper,
"Virginie Morôt!"

The captain sprang to his feet: "My wife? No, no! for God's sake!"

The light was swiftly drawn back into the cabinet and extinguished.
After several minutes the voice was heard again: "The spirit summoned is
present. But it has not the force to resume a material body unless the
need is urgent. You must state the question you would have answered."

"I must see Virginie here, in bodily presence, before I'll accept any
answer," said Laidley obstinately. "I'll have no hocus-pocus by mediums
or raps. If the dead know anything, she knows why I need her. I have had
money to which she had a--well, a claim. I've not spent it, perhaps, in
the best way. I have a mind now to atone for my mistake by leaving it to
a charity where I know it will do great good."

An amazed whistle broke through the darkness from the corner where the
judge sat. The captain caught Laidley's shoulder. "William," he
whispered, "surely you forget Jane."

Laidley shook him off. "The money is my own," he said loudly, "to do
with as I choose. But if Virginie can return from the dead, she shall
decide for me."

"It's enough to bring her back," muttered the judge. "Do you hear that?"
thumping Waring's knee--"that miserable shrimp swindling her child in
order to buy God's good-will for himself!"

There was a prolonged silence. At last a voice was heard: "She will
appear to you."

The organ rolled heavily, low soft thunders of music rose and fell, a
faint yellowish vapor stole out from under the cabinet and filled the
darkness with a visible haze. Captain Swendon stumbled to his feet and
went back to his daughter: "I can't bear it, child! I can't bear it!"
dropping into a chair.

She took his hand in her own, which were quite cool, and stroked and
kissed it. But she did not speak nor take her eyes from the door of the
cabinet.

It opened. Within sat Miriam, immovable, her eyes closed. Beside her
stood a shadowy luminous figure covered with a filmy veil. It moved
forward into the room. So thick was the vapor that the figure itself
appeared but a shade.

Laidley stooped forward, his hands on his knees, his lips apart, his
eyes dilated with terror.

The veil slowly fell from the face of the spirit, and revealed,
indistinctly as the negative of a photograph, a small thin woman with
eager, restless eyes, and black hair rolled in puffs high on the head in
the fashion of many years ago.

"Virginie!" gasped Laidley.

The captain shuddered, and hid his face. His daughter, with a quick step
backward, threw aside the curtains and flung open the shutters. The
broad daylight streamed in.

Combe sprang toward her with an oath.

The young girl held back the curtain steadily. "We need fresh air," she
said smiling resolutely in his face.

The rush of air, the daylight, the cheerful voice wakened the room as
out of a vision of death. The men started to their feet; there was a
tumult of voices and laughter; the materialized soul staggered back to
reach the cabinet. The whole of the cheap trickery was bared: her hair
was an ill-fitting wig, the chalk lay in patches on her face, the vapor
of Hades was only salt burning in a dish: the boards removed from the
window showed her snug hiding-place inside.

Dr. Dehr's fury made itself heard above the confusion: "You have brought
Spiritualism into disrepute by your infernal imposture!" clutching the
poor wretch by the shoulder, while another intemperate disciple called
loudly for the police. The woman began to sob, but did not utter a word.

"Let her go, doctor," said Mr. Waring, coming up. "We paid to see a
farce, and it was really a very nice bit of acting. This poor girl was
hired, no doubt: she is only earning her living."

"What has she done?" cried Dehr. "Spiritualism in Philadelphia never has
attracted the class of investigators that are here to-day, and she--"
shaking her viciously--"she's an impostor!"

"Damnation! she's a woman!" wrenching his hand from her. She gave Waring
a keen furtive glance, and drew quickly aside. While some of the seekers
after truth demanded their five dollars back with New England obstinacy,
and Combe chattered and screeched at them, she stood in the middle of
the room, immovable, her sombre sallow face set, her tawdry
stage-properties about her--the crown of false black hair, the sweeping
drapery, the smoking dish with fumes of ghastly vapor.

Mr. Waring went up to a short, broadly-built man in gray who had been
seated in the background during the séance. "I did not know that you
were in town or here, Mr. Neckart," he said with a certain marked
respect. "That is not an unpicturesque figure, I think. She would serve
as a study of Night, now--a stormy, muggy town-night, full of ooze and
slime." Mr. Waring's manner and rhetoric were uneasy and deferential.
Mr. Neckart was a power in a region quite outside of the little
fastidious gossiping club of men and women whom he was wont to call the
World.

"Your Night, apparently, has little relish for the morning," he said.

The woman's threatening eyes, in fact, were fixed on the tall fair girl,
the captain's daughter, who stood in the window, busied with buttoning
her father's overcoat and pinning his empty sleeve to his breast. She
was looking up at him, and talking: the wind stirred her loose pale-gold
hair; behind her branches of white roses from a vine outside thrust
themselves in at the window: the birds chirped in the rustling maples
beyond.

"What a wonderful effect of light and color!" said Waring, who had
lounged through studios and galleries enough to enable him to parcel out
the world into so many bits of palette and brush-work. "Observe the
atmosphere of sunshine and youth. Cabanel might paint the girl's face
for the Dawn. Eyes of that profound blue appear to hold the light
latent."

"There seems to be unusual candor in them," said Mr. Neckart, glancing
carelessly at Jane again, and drawing on his gloves. "A lack of
shrewdness remarkable in an American woman."

"The Swendons are Swedes by descent, you know. A little phlegm, a lack
of passion, is to be expected, eh? Now, my own taste prefers the
American type--features animated by a nimbler brain; as there, for
example," looking toward Miss Fleming. "Ugly beyond apology. But there
is a subtle attraction in it."

"No doubt you are right. I really know very little about women,"
indifferently. He nodded good-evening, glancing at his watch as he went
out.

The captain was conscious of some malignant influence at his back, and
turning, saw the woman, who had gradually approached, and now stood
still. He hastily stepped between her and his daughter: "Good God! Stand
back, Jane! This woman is following you."

"She looks as if she had the evil eye. But they are very fine eyes,"
said the young girl, inspecting her quietly, as if she had been a toad
that stood suddenly upright in her way.

"I owe you an ill turn, and I shall pay it," said the woman with a
tragic wave of the arms. "I had a way to support myself and my boy for
a year, and you have taken it from me."

"It was such a very poor way! Such a shabby farce! And it was my mother
that--" She stopped, a slight tremor on the fair, quiet face.

"Oh, I shall pay you!" The woman gathered her cheap finery about her and
swept from the room.

In the confusion Judge Rhodes had sought out Laidley, full of righteous
wrath on behalf of his friend the captain, against this limp fellow who
was going to enter heaven with a paltering apology for dishonesty on his
lips. Laidley, however, was reclining in the easy-chair with his eyes
closed, and the closed eyes gave so startling an appearance of death to
the face that the judge was thrown back in his headlong charge. "Why,
why, William! I'm sorry to see you looking so under the weather," he
said kindly.

Laidley's eyes began to blink: he smiled miserably: "It's too late to
throw the blame on the weather, judge. Though I'm going back to Aiken
next week. I came North too soon."

"This affair has turned out a more palpable humbug than I expected,"
trying to approach the point at issue by a gentle roundabout ascent. "I
wish Van Ness had been here--Pliny Van Ness. There's a man whose advice
I seek since I came to Philadelphia on all important matters. A man
whose integrity, justice--God bless me, William! You must know Pliny Van
Ness. Why don't you take his counsel, instead of meddling with these
wretched mediums? Raising the dead to tell you what to do? Bah! If you
had asked me, now--"

Laidley had drawn himself up in the chair, his watery eyes gathering a
faint eagerness: "Sit down. Here. I wish to speak to you, judge. Nobody
will hear us."

"Certainly. As you ask me now--I know the whole case. Don't try to talk:
it only makes you cough. You want to say that the property--"

"I want to say nothing about the property. My will was made last week. I
am determined to throw my means into that channel where it will best
contribute to God's service. He will not scorn a late repentance. But
Van Ness--it was about Van Ness I wanted to talk to you."

"If your will was made last week, why did you try to bring back poor
dead Virginie to advise you?"

"I don't know," said Laidley, coughing nervously--"I don't know. I
thought she would confirm me--I--I want to be just to her daughter, God
knows!"

"What is your idea of justice?"

"Why this--this," eagerly, catching the judge's red, fat hand in his
cold fingers. "Jane will be a woman whom Van Ness would be apt to
approve. I know he's fastidious. But she's very delicate and fair--as
fine a bit of human flesh as I ever saw. As for mind, she has none. A
mere child. He could mould her--mould her. Eh? I think I could throw out
an inducement which would lead him to look favorably on her--when she's
of a marriageable age, that is. If the girl were married to such a man
as Van Ness, surely she would be well placed for life. Nobody could
blame me for not making an heiress of her."

"Jane? Van Ness?" said the judge thoughtfully. "Well, Van Ness is a man
whom any woman in the country should be proud to marry. But he is
impregnable to that sort of thing. And Jane is but a child, as you say.
The scheme seems to me utterly unfeasible, Laidley. Besides, what has it
to do with her claims on you?"

"It has everything to do with them. I give her instead of money a home
and husband such as no money can buy. They must be brought together,
judge. You must do it. I have a word to say to Van Ness that will open
his eyes to her merits. I will plant the seed, as I might say. It will
grow fast enough."

The judge was silent as he helped Laidley, still talking eagerly, down
the stairs and into his carriage. The whole fantastic scheme was, as he
saw, the cowardly device of the dying man to appease his conscience.
That this poor creature should have any power to influence Van Ness, the
purest and strongest of men, was a mere bit of braggadocio, which surely
did not deceive even Laidley himself.

But what could he do? To stab with reproach, even to argue with this
nerveless, worn-out man, flaccid in mind and body, seemed to the kindly
old fellow as cruel as to torture a dying fish or other cold-blooded
creature of whose condition or capacity for suffering he could have no
just idea.

                                          REBECCA HARDING DAVIS.

[TO BE CONTINUED.]



THE SWEETENER.


    Spring blossom, rose of June and autumn-cluster
      Appeal alike unto the bloom of health,
    In whose spontaneous, overflowing lustre
      Is half the secret of the season's wealth.

    The pallid cheek may warm to apple-flushes,
      The fevered lip kiss fondly sweets of June,
    The languid palate leap to fruitage luscious,
      Yet weary of their day before the noon.

    'Tis laughing Health, with an unhindered fountain
      Of joy upbubbling from her being's core,
    Whose lavish life embraces vale or mountain,
      And drains delight at every opened door.

                               MARY B. DODGE.



AN ENGLISH EASTER.


It may be said of the English as is said of the council of war in
Sheridan's farce of _The Critic_ by one of the spectators of the
rehearsal, that when they _do_ agree their unanimity is wonderful. They
differ among themselves greatly just now as regards the machinations of
Russia, the derelictions of Turkey, the propriety of locking up the
Reverend Arthur Tooth for his Romanizing excesses, the histrionic merits
of Mr. Henry Irving, and a good many other matters; but neither just now
nor at any other time do they fail to conform to those social
observances on which Respectability has set her seal. England is a
country of curious anomalies, and this has much to do with her being so
interesting to foreign observers. The English individual character is
very positive, very independent, very much made up according to its own
sentiment of things, very prone to startling eccentricities; and yet at
the same time it has beyond any other this peculiar gift of squaring
itself with fashion and custom. In no other country, I imagine, are so
many people to be found doing the same thing in the same way at the same
time--using the same slang, wearing the same hats and cravats,
collecting the same china-plates, playing the same game of lawn-tennis
or of "polo," flocking into the same skating-rinks. The monotony of this
spectacle would soon become oppressive if the foreign observer were not
conscious of this latent capacity in the performers for the free play of
character; he finds a good deal of entertainment in wondering how they
reconcile the traditional insularity of the individual with this
perpetual tribute to custom. Of course in all civilized societies the
tribute to custom is being constantly paid; if it is less observable in
America than elsewhere the reason is not, I think, because individual
independence is greater, but because custom is more sparsely
established. Where we have customs people certainly follow them; but for
five American customs there are fifty English. I am very far from having
discovered the secret; I have not in the least learned what becomes of
that explosive personal force in the English character which is
compressed and corked down by social conformity. I look with a certain
awe at some of the manifestations of the conforming spirit, but the
fermenting idiosyncrasies beneath it are hidden from my vision. The most
striking example, to foreign eyes, of the power of custom in England is
of course the universal church-going. In the sight of all England
getting up from its tea and toast of a Sunday morning and brushing its
hat and drawing on its gloves and taking its wife on its arm and making
its offspring march before, and so, for decency's, respectability's,
propriety's sake, making its way to a place of worship appointed by the
State, in which it respects the formulas of a creed to which it attaches
no positive sense and listens to a sermon over the length of which it
explicitly haggles and grumbles,--in this great exhibition there is
something very striking to a stranger, something which he hardly knows
whether to pronounce very sublime or very puerile. He inclines on the
whole to pronounce it sublime, because it gives him the feeling that
whenever it may become necessary for a people trained in these
manoeuvres to move all together under a common direction, they will
have it in them to do so with tremendous force and cohesiveness. We hear
a good deal about the effect of the Prussian military system in
consolidating the German people and making them available for a
particular purpose; but I really think it not fanciful to say that the
military punctuality which characterizes the English observance of
Sunday ought to be appreciated in the same fashion. A nation which has
passed through the mill will certainly have been stamped by it. And
here, as in the German military service, it is really the whole nation.
When I spoke just now of paterfamilias and his _entourage_ I did not
mean to limit the statement to him. The young unmarried men go to
church; the gay bachelors, the irresponsible members of society. (That
last epithet must be taken with a grain of allowance. No one in England
is irresponsible, that perhaps is the shortest way of describing the
country. Every one is free and every one is responsible. To say what it
is people are responsible to is of course a great extension of the
question: briefly, to social expectation, to propriety, to morality, to
"position," to the classic English conscience, which is, after all, such
a considerable affair.)

The way in which the example of the more comfortable classes imposes
itself upon the less comfortable may of course be noticed in smaller
matters than church-going; in a great many matters which it may seem
trivial to mention. If one is bent upon observation nothing, however, is
trivial. So I may cite the practice of keeping the servants out of the
room at breakfast. It is the fashion, and so, apparently, through the
length and breadth of England, every one who has the slightest
pretension to standing high enough to feel the way the social breeze is
blowing conforms to it. It is awkward, unnatural, troublesome for those
at table, it involves a vast amount of leaning and stretching, of
waiting and perambulating, and it has just that vice against which, in
English history, all great movements have been made--it is arbitrary.
But it flourishes for all that, and all genteel people, looking into
each other's eyes with the desperation of gentility, agree to endure it
for gentility's sake. Another arbitrary trifle is the custom of
depriving the unhappy visitor of a napkin at luncheon. When it is
observed that the English luncheon differs from dinner only in being
several degrees more elaborate and copious, and that in the London
atmosphere it is but common charity, at any moment, to multiply your
guest's opportunities if not for ablution at least for a "dry polish,"
it will be perceived that such eccentricities are the very wantonness
and pedantry of fashion. But, as I say, they flourish, and they form
part of an immense body of prescriptive usages, to which a society
possessing in the largest manner, both by temperament and education, the
sense of the "inalienable" rights and comforts of the individual,
contrives to accommodate itself. I do not mean to say that usage in
England is always uncomfortable and arbitrary. On the contrary, few
strangers can be unfamiliar with that sensation (a most agreeable one)
which consists in perceiving in the excesses of a custom which has
struck us at first as a mere brutal invention, a reason existing in the
historic "good sense" of the English race. The sensation is frequent,
though in saying so I do not mean to imply that even superficially the
presumption is against the usages of English society. It is not, for
instance, necessarily against the custom of which I had it more
especially in mind to speak in writing these lines. The stranger in
London is forewarned that at Easter all the world goes out of town, and
that if he has no mind to be left as lonely as Marius on the ruins of
Carthage, he, too, had better make arrangements for a temporary absence.
It must be admitted that there is a sort of unexpectedness in this
vernal exodus of a body of people who, but a week before, were
apparently devoting much energy to settling down for the season. Half of
them have but lately come back from the country, where they have been
spending the winter, and they have just had time, it may be supposed, to
collect the scattered threads of town-life. Presently, however, the
threads are dropped and society is dispersed, as if it had taken a false
start. It departs as Holy Week draws to a close, and remains absent for
the following ten days. Where it goes is its own affair; a good deal of
it goes to Paris. Spending last winter in that city I remember how, when
I woke up on Easter Monday and looked out of my window, I found the
street covered, overnight, with a sort of snow-fall of disembarked
Britons. They made, for other people, an uncomfortable week of it. One's
customary table at the restaurant, one's habitual stall at the Théâtre
Français, one's usual fiacre on the cab-stand, were very apt to have
suffered pre-emption. I believe that the pilgrimage to Paris was this
year of the usual proportions: and you may be sure that people who did
not cross the Channel were not without invitations to quiet old places
in the country, where the pale, fresh primroses were beginning to light
up the dark turf and the purple bloom of the bare tree-mosses to be
freckled here and there with verdure. In England country-life is the
obverse of the medal, town-life the reverse, and when an occasion comes
for quitting London there are few members of what the French call the
"easy class" who have not a collection of dull, moist, verdant resorts
to choose from. Dull I call them, and I fancy not without reason, though
at the moment I speak of their dullness must have been mitigated by the
unintermittent presence of the keenest and liveliest of east winds. Even
in mellow English country homes Easter-tide is a period of rawness and
atmospheric acridity--the moment at which the frank hostility of winter,
which has at last to give up the game, turns to peevishness and spite.
This is what makes it arbitrary, as I said just now, for "easy" people
to go forth to the wind-swept lawns and the shivering parks. But nothing
is more striking to an American than the frequency of English holidays
and the large way in which occasions for change and diversion are made
use of. All this speaks to Americans of three things which they are
accustomed to see allotted in scantier measure. The English have more
time than we, they have more money, and they have a much higher relish
for holiday taking. (I am speaking of course always of the "easy
classes.") Leisure, fortune and the love of sport--these things are
implied in English society at every turn. It was a very small number of
weeks before Easter that Parliament met, and yet a ten days' recess was
already, from the luxurious Parliamentary point of view, a necessity. A
short time hence we shall be having the Whitsuntide Holidays, which I am
told are even more of a festival than Easter, and from this point to
midsummer, when everything stops, it is an easy journey. The business
men and the professional men partake in equal measure of these agreeable
diversions, and I was amused at hearing a lady whose husband was an
active member of the bar say that, though he was leaving town with her
for ten days and though Easter was a very nice bit of idleness, they
really amused themselves with more gusto in the later recess, which
would come on toward the end of May. I thought this highly probable, and
admired so picturesque a chiaroscuro of work and play. If my phrase has
a slightly ironical sound this is purely accidental. A large appetite
for holidays, the ability not only to take them but to know what to do
with them when taken, is the sign of a robust people, and judged by this
measure we Americans are rather ill-conditioned. Such holidays as we
take are taken very often in Europe, where it is sometimes noticeable
that our privilege is rather heavy in our hands. Tribute rendered to
English industry, however (our own stands in no need of compliments), it
must be added that for those same easy classes I just spoke of things
are very easy indeed. The number of persons available for purely social
purposes at all times and seasons is infinitely greater than among
ourselves; and the ingenuity of the arrangements permanently going
forward to disembarrass them of their superfluous leisure is as yet in
America an undeveloped branch of civilization. The young men who are
preparing for the stern realities of life among the gray-green cloisters
of Oxford are obliged to keep their terms but one half the year; and the
rosy little cricketers of Eton and Harrow are let loose upon the
parental home for an embarrassing number of months. Happily the parental
home is apt to be an affair of gardens, lawns and parks.

Passion Week, in London, is distinctly an ascetic period; there is
really an approach to sackcloth and ashes. Private dissipation is
suspended; most of the theatres and music-halls are closed; the huge
dusky city seems to take on a still sadder coloring and a sort of hush
steals over its mighty uproar. At such a time, for a stranger, London is
not cheerful. Arriving there, during the past winter, about
Christmas-time, I encountered three British Sundays in a row--a
spectacle to strike terror into the stoutest heart. A Sunday and a
"bank-holiday," if I remember aright, had joined hands with a Christmas
Day and produced the portentous phenomenon to which I allude. I
betrayed, I suppose, some apprehension of its oppressive character, for
I remember being told in a consolatory way that I needn't fear; it would
not come round again for another year. This information was given me
apropos of that surprising interruption of one's relations with the
laundress which is apparently characteristic of the period. I was told
that all the washerwomen were drunk, and that, as it would take them
some time to revive, I must not look for a speedy resumption of these
relations. I shall not forget the impression made upon me by this
statement; I had just come from Paris and it almost sent me spinning
back. One of the incidental _agréments_ of life in the latter city had
been the knock at my door on Saturday evenings of a charming young woman
with a large basket covered with a snowy napkin on her arm, and on her
head a frilled and fluted muslin cap which was an irresistible
advertisement of her art. To say that my admirable _blanchisseuse_ was
_sober_ is altogether too gross a compliment; but I was always grateful
to her for her russet cheek, her frank, expressive eye, her talkative
smile, for the way her charming cap was poised upon her crisp, dense
hair and her well-made dress was fitted to her well-made waist. I talked
with her; I _could_ talk with her; and as she talked she moved about and
laid out her linen with a delightful modest ease. Then her light step
carried her off again, talking, to the door and with a brighter smile
and an "Adieu, monsieur!" she closed it behind her, leaving one to think
how stupid is prejudice and how poetic a creature a washerwoman may be.
London, in December, was livid with sleet and fog, and against this
dismal background was offered me the vision of a horrible old woman in
a smoky bonnet, lying prone in a puddle of whisky! She seemed to assume
a kind of symbolic significance, and she almost frightened me away.

I mention this trifle, which is doubtless not creditable to my
fortitude, because I found that the information given me was not
strictly accurate and that at the end of three months I had another
array of London Sundays to face. On this occasion however nothing
occurred to suggest again the dreadful image I have just sketched,
though I devoted a good deal of time to observing the manners of the
lower orders. From Good Friday to Easter Monday, inclusive, they were
very much _en évidence_, and it was an excellent occasion for getting an
impression of the British populace. Gentility had retired to the
background and in the West End all the blinds were lowered; the streets
were void of carriages and well-dressed pedestrians were rare; but the
"masses" were all abroad and making the most of their holiday, and I
strolled about and watched them at their gambols. The heavens were most
unfavorable, but in an English "outing" there is always a margin left
for a drenching, and throughout the vast smoky city, beneath the
shifting gloom of the sky the grimy crowds trooped about with a kind of
weather-proof stolidity. The parks were full of them, the railway
stations overflowed and the Thames embankment was covered. The "masses,"
I think, are usually an entertaining spectacle, even when observed
through the glutinous medium of London bad weather. There are indeed few
things in their way more impressive than a dusky London holiday; it
suggests a variety of reflections. Even looked at superficially the
British capital is one of the most interesting of cities, and it is
perhaps on such occasions as this that I have most felt its interest.
London is ugly, dusky, dreary, more destitute than any European city of
graceful and decorative incident; and though on festal days, like those
I speak of, the populace is massed in large numbers at certain points,
many of the streets are empty enough of human life to enable you to
perceive their intrinsic hideousness. A Christmas Day or a Good Friday
uncovers the ugliness of London. As you walk along the streets, having
no fellow-pedestrians to look at, you look up at the brown brick
house-walls, corroded with soot and fog, pierced with their straight
stiff window-slits and finished, by way of a cornice, with a little
black line resembling a slice of curb-stone. There is not an accessory,
not a touch of architectural fancy, not the narrowest concession to
beauty. If I were a foreigner it would make me rabid; being an
Anglo-Saxon I find in it what Thackeray found in Baker street--a
delightful proof of English domestic virtue, of the sanctity of the
British home. There are miles and miles of these edifying monuments, and
it would seem that a city made up of them should have no claim to that
larger effectiveness of which I just now spoke. London, however, is not
made up of them; there are architectural combinations of a statelier
kind, and the impression moreover does not rest on details. London is
picturesque in spite of details--from its dark-green, misty parks, the
way the light comes down leaking and filtering from its cloudy skies,
and the softness and richness of tone which objects put on in such an
atmosphere as soon as they begin to recede. Nowhere is there such a play
of light and shade, such a struggle of sun and smoke, such aërial
gradations and confusions. To eyes addicted to the picturesque this is a
constant entertainment, and yet this is only part of it. What completes
the effect of the place is its appeal to the feelings, made in so many
ways, but made above all by agglomerated immensity. At any given point
London looks huge; even in narrow corners you have a sense of its
hugeness, and petty places acquire a certain interest from their being
parts of so mighty a whole. Nowhere, else is so much human life gathered
together and nowhere does it press upon you with so many suggestions.
These are not all of an exhilarating kind; far from it. But they are of
every possible kind, and this is the interest of London. Those that were
most forcible during the showery Easter season were certain of the more
perplexing and depressing ones; but even with these was mingled a
brighter strain.

I walked down to Westminster Abbey on Good Friday afternoon--walked from
Piccadilly across the Green Park and through St. James's Park. The parks
were densely filled with the populace--the elder people shuffling about
the walks and the poor little smutty-faced children sprawling over the
dark damp turf. When I reached the Abbey I found a dense group of people
about the entrance, but I squeezed my way through them and succeeded in
reaching the threshold. Beyond this it was impossible to advance, and I
may add that it was not desirable. I put my nose into the church and
promptly withdrew it. The crowd was terribly compact and, beneath the
Gothic arches, the odor was not that of incense. I slowly eliminated
myself, with that very modified sense of disappointment that one feels
in London at being crowded out of a place. This is a frequent
disappointment, for you very soon find out that there are, selfishly
speaking, too many people. Human life is cheap; your fellow-mortals are
too plentiful. Whereever you go you make the observation. Go to the
theatre, to a concert, to an exhibition, to a reception; you always find
that, before you arrive, there are people enough on the field. You are a
tight fit in your place wherever you find it; you have too many
companions and competitors. You feel yourself at times in danger of
thinking meanly of the human personality; numerosity, as it were,
swallows up quality, and such perpetual familiarity contains the germs
of contempt. This is the reason why the perfection of luxury in England
is to own a "park"--an artificial solitude. To get one's self into the
middle of a few hundred acres of oak-studded turf and to keep off the
crowd by the breadth, at least, of this grassy cincture, is to enjoy a
comfort which circumstances make peculiarly precious. But I walked back
through the parks in the midst of these "circumstances," and I found
that entertainment which I never fail to derive from a great English
assemblage. The English are, to my eyes, so much the handsomest people
in Europe that it takes some effort of the imagination to believe that
the fact requires proof. I never see a large number of them without this
impression being confirmed; though I hasten to add that I have sometimes
felt it to be woefully shaken in the presence of a small number. I
suspect that a great English crowd would yield a larger percentage of
handsome faces and figures than any other. With regard to the upper
class I imagine this is generally granted; but I should extend it to the
whole people. Certainly, if the English populace strike the observer by
their good looks they must be very good-looking indeed. They are as
ill-dressed as their betters are well-dressed, and their garments have
that sooty-looking surface which has nothing in common with some forms
of ragged picturesqueness. It is the hard prose of misery--an ugly and
hopeless imitation of respectable attire. This is especially noticeable
in the battered and bedraggled bonnets of the women, which look as if
their husbands had stamped on them in hobnailed boots, as a hint of what
is in store for their wearers. Then it is not too much to say that
two-thirds of the London faces, among the "masses," bear in some degree
or other the traces of liquor, which is not a beautifying fluid. The
proportion of flushed, empurpled, eruptive countenances is very
striking; and the ugliness of the sight is not diminished by the fact
that many of the faces thus disfigured were evidently once handsome. A
very large allowance is to be made, too, for the people who bear the
distinctive stamp of that physical and mental degradation which comes
from the slums and purlieus of this dusky Babylon--the pallid, stunted,
misbegotten and in every way miserable figures. These people swarm in
every London crowd, and I know of none in any other place that suggest
an equal degree of misery. But when these abatements are made, the
observer is still liable to be struck by the frequency of well-modeled
faces and bodies well put together; of strong, straight brows and
handsome mouths and noses, of rounded, finished chins and well-poised
heads, of admirable complexions and well-disposed limbs.

All this, I admit, is a description of the men rather than of the women;
but to a certain extent it includes the women. There is much more beauty
among English women of the lower class than strangers who are accustomed
to dwell upon their "coarseness" recognize. Pretty heads, pretty mouths
and cheeks and chins, pretty eyes too, if you are content with a
moderate brilliancy, and at all events charming complexions--these seem
to me to be presented in a very sufficient abundance. The capacity of an
Englishwoman for being handsome strikes me as unlimited, and even if (I
repeat) it is in the luxurious class that it is most freely exercised,
yet among the daughters of the people one sees a great many fine points.
Among the men fine points are strikingly numerous--especially among the
younger ones. Now the same distinction is to be made--the gentlemen are
certainly handsomer than the vulgarians. But taking one young Englishman
with another, they are physically very well appointed. Their features
are finished, composed, as it were, more harmoniously than those of many
of their nearer and remoter neighbors, and their figures are apt to be
both powerful and compact. They present to view very much fewer
accidental noses and inexpressive mouths, fewer sloping shoulders and
ill-planted heads of hair, than their American kinsmen. Speaking always
from the sidewalk, it may be said that as the spring increases in London
and the symptoms of the season multiply, the beautiful young men who
adorn the West-End pavements, and who advance before you in couples,
arm-in-arm, fair-haired, gray-eyed, athletic, slow-strolling, ambrosial,
are among the most brilliant features of the brilliant period. I have it
at heart to add that if the English are handsomer than ourselves, they
are also very much uglier. Indeed I think that all the European peoples
are uglier than the American; we are far from producing those
magnificent types of facial eccentricity which flourish among older
civilizations. American ugliness is on the side of physical poverty and
meanness; English on that of redundancy and monstrosity. In America
there are few grotesques; in England there are many--and some of them
are almost handsome!

The element of the grotesque was very noticeable to me in the most
striking collection of the shabbier English types that I had seen since
I came to London. The occasion of my seeing them was the funeral of Mr.
George Odger, which befell some four or five weeks before the Easter
period. Mr. George Odger, it will be remembered, was an English radical
agitator, of humble origin, who had distinguished himself by a perverse
desire to get into Parliament. He exercised, I believe, the useful
profession of shoemaker, and he knocked in vain at the door that opens
but to golden keys. But he was a useful and honorable man, and his own
people gave him an honorable burial. I emerged accidentally into
Piccadilly at the moment they were so engaged, and the spectacle was one
I should have been sorry to miss. The crowd was enormous, but I managed
to squeeze through it and to get into a hansom cab that was drawn up
beside the pavement, and here I looked on as from a box at the play.
Though it was a funeral that was going on I will not call it a tragedy;
but it was a very serious comedy. The day happened to be
magnificent--the finest of the year. The funeral had been taken in hand
by the classes who are socially unrepresented in Parliament, and it had
the character of a great popular "manifestation." The hearse was
followed by very few carriages, but the cortége of pedestrians stretched
away in the sunshine, up and down the classic gentility of Piccadilly,
on a scale that was highly impressive. Here and there the line was
broken by a small brass band--apparently one of those bands of itinerant
Germans that play for coppers beneath lodging-house windows; but for the
rest it was compactly made up of what the newspapers call the dregs of
the population. It was the London rabble, the metropolitan mob, men and
women, boys and girls, the decent poor and the indecent, who had
scrambled into the ranks as they gathered them up on their passage, and
were making a sort of solemn spree of it. Very solemn it all
was--perfectly proper and undemonstrative. They shuffled along in an
interminable line, and as I looked at them out of the front of my hansom
I seemed to be having a sort of panoramic view of the under side, the
wrong side, of the London world. The procession was filled with figures
which seemed never to have "shown out," as the English say, before; of
strange, pale, mouldy paupers who blinked and stumbled in the Piccadilly
sunshine. I have no space to describe them more minutely, but I found in
the whole affair something memorable. My impression rose not simply from
the radical, or as I may say for the sake of color, the revolutionary,
emanation of this dingy concourse, lighted up by the ironical sky; but
from the same causes that I had observed a short time before, on the day
the queen went to open Parliament, when in Trafalgar Square, looking
straight down into Westminster and over the royal cortége, were gathered
a group of banners and festoons, inscribed in big staring letters with
mottoes and sentiments which a sensitive police-department might easily
have found seditious. They were mostly in allusion to the Tichborne
claimant, whose release from his dungeon they peremptorily demanded, and
whose cruel fate was taken as a pretext for several sweeping reflections
on the social arrangements of the time and country. These portentous
standards were allowed to sun themselves as freely as if they had been
the manifestoes of the Irish Giant or the Oriental Dwarf at a fair. I
had lately come from Paris, where the police-department _is_ sensitive,
and where revolutionary placards are not observed to adorn the base of
the obelisk in the Place de la Concorde. I was, therefore, the more
struck on both of the occasions I speak of with the admirable English
practice of letting people alone--with the good sense and the good humor
and even the good promise of it. It was this that I found impressive as
I watched the "manifestation" of Mr. Odger's underfed partisans--the
fact that the mighty mob could march along and do its errand, while the
excellent quiet policemen stood by simply to see that the channel was
kept clear and comfortable.

When Easter Monday came it was obvious that every one (save Mr. Odger's
friends--three or four million or so) had gone out of town. There was
hardly a pair of shutters in the West End that was not closed; there was
not a bell that it was any use to pull. The weather was detestable, the
rain incessant, and the fact that all one's friends were away gave one
plenty of leisure to reflect that the country must be the reverse of
enlivening. But all one's friends had gone thither (this is the
unanimity I began by talking about), and to keep down as much as
possible the proportions of that game of hide-and-seek of which, at the
best, so much of London social life consists, it seemed wise to bring
within the limits of the dull season any such excursion as one might
have projected in commemoration of the first days of spring. After due
cogitation I paid a little visit to Canterbury and Dover, taking
Rochester by the way, and it was of this momentous journey that I
proposed, in beginning these remarks, to give an account. But I have
dallied so much by the way that I have come almost to my rope's end
without reaching my first stage. I should have begun, artistically, by
relating that I put myself in the humor for remote adventure by going
down the Thames on a penny steamboat to--the Tower! This was on the
Saturday before Easter and the City was as silent as the grave. The
Tower was a memory of my childhood, and having a theory, that from such
memories the dust of the ages had better not be shaken, I had not
retraced my steps to its venerable walls. But the Tower is very
good--much less cockneyfied than I supposed it would seem to my maturer
vision; very vast and grand, historical and romantic. I could not get
into it, as it had been closed for Passion Week, but I was thus relieved
from the obligation to march about with a dozen fellow-starers in the
train of a didactic beef-eater, and I strolled at will through the
courts and the garden, sharing them only with the lounging soldiers of
the garrison, who made the place more picturesque. At Rochester I
stopped for the sake of its castle, which I spied from the
railway-train, perched on a grassy bank beside the widening Medway.
There were other reasons as well; the place has a small cathedral, and
one has read about it in Dickens, who lived during the latter years of
his life at Gadshill, a couple of miles from the town. All this Kentish
country, between London and Dover, figures indeed repeatedly in Dickens;
he is to a certain extent, for our own time, the _genius loci_. I found
this to be quite the case at Rochester. I had occasion to go into a
little shop kept by a talkative old woman who had a photograph of
Gadshill lying on her counter. This led to my asking her whether the
illustrious master of the house often made his appearance in the town.
"Oh, bless you, sir," she said, "we every one of us knew him to speak
to. He was in this very shop on the Tuesday with a party of
foreigners--as he was dead in his bed on the Friday. He 'ad on his black
velvet suit, and it always made him look so 'andsome. I said to my
'usband, 'I _do_ think Charles Dickens looks so nice in that black
velvet suit.' But he said he couldn't see as he looked any way
particular. He was in this very shop on the Tuesday, with a party of
foreigners." Rochester consists of little more than one long street,
stretching away from the castle and the river toward neighboring
Chatham, and edged with low brick houses, of intensely provincial
aspect, most of which have some small, dull quaintness of gable or
casement. Nearly opposite to the shop of the old lady with the
dissentient husband is a little dwelling with an inscribed slab set into
its face, which must often have provoked a smile in the great master of
laughter. The slab relates that in the year 1579 Richard Watts here
established a charity which should furnish "six poor travelers, not
rogues or proctors," one night's lodging and entertainment gratis and
four pence in the morning to go on their way withal, and that in memory
of his "munificence" the stone has lately been renewed. The inn at
Rochester was poor, and I felt strongly tempted to knock at the door of
Mr. Watts's asylum, under plea of being neither a rogue nor a proctor.
The poor traveler who avails himself of the testamentary four pence may
easily resume his journey as far as Chatham without breaking his
treasure. Is not this the place where little Davy Copperfield slept
under a cannon on his journey from London to Dover, to join his aunt,
Miss Trotwood? The two towns are really but one, which forms an
interminable crooked thoroughfare, crowded, in the dusk, as I measured
it up and down, with specimens of the British soldier from the large
garrison at Chatham; those trim and firmly-pacing red-coats who seem, to
eyes accustomed to the promiscuous continental levies, so picked and
disciplined, polished and pomatumed, such ornamental and yet after all,
such capable warriors.

The cathedral at Rochester is small and plain, hidden away in rather an
awkward corner, without a verdant close to set it off. It is dwarfed and
effaced by the great square Norman keep of the adjacent castle. But
within it is very charming, especially beyond the detestable wall, the
vice of almost all the English cathedrals, which shuts in the choir and
breaks that long vista so properly of the very essence of a great
church. Here, as at Canterbury, you ascend a high range of steps to pass
through the small door in this wall. When I speak slightingly, by the
way, of the outside of Rochester cathedral, I intend my faint praise in
a relative sense. If we were so happy as to possess this inferior
edifice in America, we should go barefoot to see it; but here it stands
in the great shadow of Canterbury, and that makes it humble. I remember,
however, an old priory gateway which leads you to the church, out of the
main street; I remember something in the way of a quiet, weird deanery
or canonry, at the base of the eastern walls; I remember a fluted tower
that took the afternoon light and let the rooks and the swallows come
circling and clamoring around it. Better than these things, however, I
remember the ivy-draped mass of the castle--a most noble and imposing
ruin. The old walled precinct has been converted into a little public
garden, with flowers and benches, and a pavilion for a band, and the
place was not empty, as such places in England never are. The result is
agreeable, but I believe the process was barbarous, involving the
destruction and dispersion of many interesting portions of the ruin. I
sat there for a long time, however, looking in the fading light at what
was left. This rugged pile of Norman masonry will be left when a great
many solid things have departed; it is a sort of satire on destruction
or decay. Its walls are fantastically thick; their great time-bleached
expanses and all their rounded roughnesses, their strange mixture of
softness and grimness, have an indefinable fascination for the eye.
English ruins always come out peculiarly when the day begins to fade.
Weather-bleached, as I say they are, they turn even paler in the
twilight and grow consciously solemn and spectral. I have seen many a
mouldering castle, but I remember no single mass of ruin more impressive
than this towering square of Rochester.

It is not the absence of a close that damages Canterbury; the cathedral
stands amid grass and trees, with a great garden sweep all round it, and
is placed in such a way that, as you pass out from under the gate-house,
you appreciate immediately its grand feature--its extraordinary and
magnificent length. None of the English cathedrals seems more
beautifully isolated, more shut up to itself. It is a long walk beneath
the walls from the gateway of the close to the far outer end of the last
chapel. Of all that there is to observe in this upward-gazing stroll I
can give no detailed account; I can speak only of the general
impression. This is altogether delightful. None of the rivals of
Canterbury have a more complicated and elaborate architecture, a more
perplexing intermixture of periods, a more charming jumble of Norman
arches and English points and perpendiculars. What makes the side-view
superb, moreover, is the double transepts, which produce a fine
modification of gables and buttresses. It is as if two great churches
had joined forces toward the middle--one giving its nave and the other
its choir, and each keeping its own great cross-aisles. Astride of the
roof, between them, sits a huge Gothic tower, which is one of the latest
portions of the building, though it looks like one of the earliest, so
crumbled and blunted and mellowed is it by time and weather. Like the
rest of the structure it has a magnificent color--a sort of rich dull
yellow, a something that is neither brown nor gray. This is particularly
appreciable from the cloister on the farther side of the church--the
side, I mean, away from the town and the open garden-sweep I spoke of;
the side that looks toward a damp old deanery lurking behind a brown
archway, through which you see young ladies in Gainsborough hats playing
something on a patch of velvet turf; the side, in short, that is somehow
intermingled with a green quadrangle which serves as a play-ground to a
King's School, which is adorned externally with a most precious and
picturesque old fragment of Norman staircase. This cloister is not "kept
up;" it is very dusky and mouldy and dilapidated, and of course very
picturesque. The old black arches and capitals are various and handsome,
and in the centre are tumbled together a group of crooked gravestones,
themselves almost buried in the deep soft grass. Out of the cloister
opens the chapter-house, which is not kept up either, but which is none
the less a magnificent structure; a noble lofty hall, with a beautiful
wooden roof, simply arched like that of a tunnel, and very grand and
impressive from its great sweep and its absence of columns, brackets or
supports of any kind. The place is now given up to dust and echoes; but
it looks more like a banqueting-hall than a council-room of priests, and
as you sit on the old wooden bench, which, raised on two or three steps,
runs round the base of the four walls, you may gaze up and make out the
faint, ghostly traces of decorative paint and gold upon the noble
ceiling. A little patch of this has been restored, "to give an idea."
From one of the angles of the cloister you are recommended by the verger
to take a view of the great tower, which indeed detaches itself with
tremendous effect. You see it base itself upon the roof as broadly as if
it were striking roots in earth, and then pile itself away to a height
which seems to make the very swallows dizzy, as they fall twittering
down its shafted sides. Within the cathedral you hear a great deal, of
course, about poor Thomas A'Becket, and the great sensation of the place
is to stand on the particular spot where he was murdered and look down
at a small fragmentary slab which the verger points out to you as a bit
of the pavement that caught the blood-drops of the struggle. It was late
in the afternoon when I first entered the church; there had been a
service in the choir, but it was well over and I had the place to
myself. The verger, who had some pushing about of benches to attend to,
turned me into the locked gates and left me to wander through the
side-aisles of the choir and into the great chapel beyond it. I say I
had the place to myself; but it would be more decent to affirm that I
shared it, in particular, with another gentleman. This personage was
stretched upon a couch of stone, beneath a quaint old canopy of wood;
his hands were crossed upon his breast and his pointed toes rested upon
a little griffin or leopard. He was a very handsome fellow and the image
of a gallant knight. His name was Edward Plantagenet and his sobriquet
was the Black Prince. "_De la mort ne pensai-je mye_," he says in the
beautiful inscription embossed upon the bronze base of his image; and I
too, as I stood there, thought not a whit of death. His bones were in
the pavement beneath my feet, but within his rigid bronze his life
burned fresh and strong. Simple, handsome and expressive, it is a
singularly striking and even touching monument, and in the silent, empty
chapel which had held together for so many ages this last remnant of his
presence it was possible to feel a certain personal nearness to him.
One had been farther off, after all, from other examples of that British
valor of which he is the most picturesque type. In this same chapel for
many a year stood the shrine of St. Thomas of Canterbury, one of the
richest and most potent in Christendom. The pavement which lay before it
has kept its place, but Henry VIII. swept everything else away into the
limbo of his ransacked abbeys and his murdered wives. Becket was
originally buried in the crypt of the church; his ashes lay there for
fifty years, and it was only little by little that his martyrdom was, as
the French say, "exploited." Then he was transplanted into the Lady
Chapel; every grain of his dust became a priceless relic and the
pavement was hollowed by the knees of pilgrims. It was on this errand of
course that Chaucer's story-telling cavalcade came to Canterbury. I made
my way down into the crypt, which is a magnificent maze of low, dark
arches and pillars, and groped about till I found the place where the
frightened monks had first shuffled the inanimate victim of Moreville
and Fitzurse out of the reach of further desecration. While I stood
there a violent thunder-storm broke over the cathedral; great rumbling
gusts and rain-drifts came sweeping through the open sides of the crypt,
and, mingling with the darkness which seemed to deepen and flash in
corners, and with the potent mouldy smell, made me feel as if I had
descended into the very bowels of history. I emerged again, but the
rain had settled down and spoiled the evening, and I splashed back to my
inn and sat in a chair by the coffee-room fire, reading Dean Stanley's
agreeable "Memorials" of Canterbury, and wondering over the musty
appointments and meagre resources of English hostels. This establishment
had entitled itself (in compliment to the Black Prince, I suppose), the
"Fleur-de-Lis." The name was very pretty (I had been foolish enough to
let it take me to the inn), but the lily was sadly deflowered. I found
compensation at Dover, however, where the "Lord Warden" Hotel struck me
as the best inn I had encountered in England. My principal errand at
Dover was to look for Miss Betsey Trotwood's cottage, but I am sorry to
say I failed to discover it. Was it not upon the downs, overlooking the
town and the sea? I saw nothing on the downs but Dover Castle, which, in
default of Miss Trotwood's stronghold, I zealously visited. It is an
establishment of quite the same character, bristling with offensive and
defensive machinery. More seriously speaking, it is a magnificent
fortress--a bequest of the Middle Ages turned to excellent account by
modern engineers. The day was clear and beautiful, and I walked about
for a while among the towers and the grassy bastions; then I stood and
gossiped with an amiable gunner who talked to me of Malta, leaning
against the rampart and looking across the wrinkled sea to the
glimmering cliffs of France.

                                    HENRY JAMES, JR.



THE ELIXIR.


    "Oh brew me a potion strong and good!
      One golden drop in his wine
    Shall charm his sense and fire his blood,
      And bend his will to mine."

    Poor child of passion! ask of me
      Elixir of death or sleep,
    Or Lethe's stream; but love is free,
      And woman must wait and weep.

                      EMMA LAZARUS.



LÉONIE REGNAULT: A STUDY FROM FRENCH LIFE.


In the pretty town of Macon, on the banks of the Saône, lived Léonie
Regnault. She remembered no other home than the gray stone house with
its balconied windows that overlooked the beautiful river and the long,
somewhat formal promenades that stretch along its banks, with their
green trees and many seats, but never a blade of grass--all dry,
hard-beaten gravel, after the ugly French fashion, convenient enough, it
must be confessed, for the evening loungers, gay or tired, whom the dewy
green of Nature might incommode.

Léonie's father lived in Paris, and he had brought her when only three
years old to the gray stone house and the care of his only sister,
Madame Perrin, a childless widow, who gladly received the beautiful
little girl to the large shelter of a loving heart. But Léonie never
forgot her father. The little creature would sit on her low-cushioned
chair and sing to herself, "Mon beau papa! mon beau papa! O comme je
t'aime, mon beau papa!" I suppose every tender father appears beautiful
to his little child, but Colonel Regnault was indeed a strikingly
handsome man, with a perfect grace and dignity of manner which rendered
him indispensable to the court of Louis Napoleon, where he had a
prominent position on all days of ceremony. Once or twice a year he made
his escape from court duties for a brief visit to Léonie, whose love for
him grew more intense with years, concentrating in itself all the
romance of her enthusiastic nature.

Madame Perrin saw few visitors, and scarcely ever went out except to
mass. Every morning her good Louise took Léonie to the girls' school in
the old stone mansion which had once been the home of Lamartine, and
went every evening to conduct her home again. Of course, Léonie had her
inseparable friend, as what school-girl has not, and few lovers are so
devoted to each other as were Léonie Regnault and Hélène Duprès. They
sat side by side every day in school, and out of school wrote each other
long letters, of which they were generally themselves the bearers. Life
seems so rich and inexhaustible when it is new--the merest nothing has
its poem and history. They had made their first communion together,
which was the most important incident hitherto in Léonie's uneventful
life. Her father had come down on this occasion, and when she came from
the altar he had put aside her white veil and kissed her with tears in
his eyes.

Léonie had completed her fifteenth year when she was thrown into great
excitement by an unexpected piece of news. Her father was about to
marry. The future Madame Regnault was a young widow of good family and
large fortune. He had taken this step, he said, for Léonie's sake even
more than for his own. He wished to have his daughter with him and to
cultivate her talents; and how could this be done without a home in
Paris? The marriage would take place early in September, and the first
week in October he would come for Léonie. He looked forward with delight
to having a home for his beautiful beloved child.

It was the last week in September. The rain was falling in a dull dreary
way, as it had been falling all day and almost a week of days.

"I wish it would clear up," said Léonie. "I hate to have everything look
so dreary just the last week I have to stay."

"Do you ever think, chérie, how dull it will be for me when you are
gone? What shall I do without ma chère petite?" asked Madame Perrin
tenderly.

"And what shall I do without you, chère maman? I am afraid I shall not
like the new mamma that papa has given me. Or perhaps I am only afraid
that she will not like me. You are my real mother," taking her hand
caressingly. "I wish I could remember my own mother. Why have you never
told me anything about her? I have asked you so many times."

"I never was acquainted with your mother. She lived in Paris, you know,
and I lived here."

"But you have seen her. Was she beautiful? Am I like her?"

"Yes," said Madame Perrin with a little start--"so much like her that it
frightens me." Then more deliberately, in reply to Léonie's astonished
eyes, "I mean that it is sad to be reminded of one who is dead."

"Papa must have loved her very much. I remember when I was a little
girl, and began to wonder why I had not a mother like Hélène, you said I
must never ask papa about her, it would give him so much pain. But now I
may, now that he has given her place to somebody else."

"By no means, Léonie--less than ever. If your poor father has at last
succeeded in leaving his sorrow behind him, do you wish to drag him back
to it, you thoughtless child?"

"Then you must tell me yourself, ma tante. It is very strange that you
are so unwilling to tell me anything about my pretty mother who died
when I was almost a baby."

"Why will you be so persistent? I do not like to give you so much pain."

"Why, dear aunt, I shall like to hear about her. It is very sad not to
have any mother, but I can't feel as distressed about it as if I had
known and loved her. She is only a beautiful dream to me. I cannot feel
as I should if you were to die and leave me. You must tell me. I shall
not let you have any peace till you do. You can't refuse me now, just
when I am going away."

"Well, if I must, I must," said Madame Perrin with trembling voice.
"What do I know? It may be for your salvation. The Blessed Virgin grant
it! Your mother, Léonie, was a great beauty."

"I was sure of it. If I could only have seen her with my dear papa! He
is so handsome always."

"She was a great singer too."

"I am glad of it. I shall be a singer when I have learned in Paris. I
care more for the lessons in singing than for anything else in the great
beautiful city, except being with my own papa."

"But, Léonie, your mother sang in the Grand Opera. She was the best
singer in France, or in the world perhaps, and everybody was crazy about
her."

"And so papa married an opera-singer? It is quite a romance."

"He did not marry her."

"Not marry her?" said Léonie with white face and great black, wide-open
eyes.

"She was married already to one of the singers in the opera, and she
left him to live with your father."

Léonie's white lips shaped rather than uttered the question, "What did
he do, the husband?"

"He challenged your father, and, though he was so much his inferior,
Léon was too generous to hurt his feelings by refusing to fight with him
after doing him such an injury. He was so good a swordsman that he
easily disarmed him with only a slight wound."

"This is terrible!" said Léonie. "My father such a wicked man!"

"That is not the way the world looked at it. All the men envied Léon,
and the women flattered and spoiled him more than ever."

"I hate my father!" cried Léonie with quick, passionate sobs. "No wonder
my poor mother died. I shall be her avenger: I feel it."

"You do not know what you are saying. Your mother avenged herself. She
deserted him as she deserted her husband, and you too, my poor child,
when you were just learning to say 'Mamma.' Poor Léon! he sinned, but he
suffered too. Be merciful to him, Léonie, as you pray God to be merciful
to you."

"Is my mother alive?" asked Léonie, shivering.

"No: she died three years ago. Your father never would see her again,
but when he heard that she was sick and in want (she had entirely lost
her wonderful voice), he gave her an annuity because she was your
mother. Father Aubrey used to see her from time to time, and he said
she was truly penitent before she died."

"Oh, what shall I do? I shall never be happy again--never, never! What
made you tell me? How could you?" said poor Léonie, wringing her little
hands and burying her face in the cushions.

"My child, you would hear it sooner or later in that great, wicked city,
and it is better that you should be prepared. You are beautiful like
your mother, you will sing like her, and I am so afraid--" here the poor
little woman broke down and began to cry like Léonie, but less
violently--"I am so afraid that you will go on the stage and be tempted
and fall like her. Promise me that you will never sing in the opera,
Léonie, no matter who urges it, even if it is your father himself."

"I will die first," answered Léonie. "I wish I had never been born."

"Don't tell your father, Léonie," sobbed Madame Perrin; and here the
conversation ended.

"What's the matter with Léonie?" asked Colonel Regnault the night after
his arrival. "She looks so pale and languid, and hardly gives me a
welcome. What ails the child?"

"She has not been quite well for a few days, and I dare say she feels
sad at leaving Hélène and me," replied his sister.

"She'll brighten up when she gets to Paris," said the colonel.

The sorrow of early youth, however violent, is seldom proof against new
impressions, and this was especially true of one so susceptible and
mobile as Léonie Regnault. She entered enthusiastically upon her musical
studies, taking lessons of Madame Viardot and also at the Conservatoire.
Madame Regnault was a sweet and quiet woman, devotedly attached to her
husband, and not a little afraid of him. Colonel Regnault, with all his
urbanity, had a despotic will, extending to the most minute and
seemingly indifferent things: he was just the kind of man to graduate a
gentle, loving woman into a saint. The only time I ever dined with
Madame Regnault I was forced to eat under the cold steel of his clear
blue eye a plate of those small red shrimps which Parisians think so
delicious (I could have swallowed spiders with as little effort), and
afterward quaff a cup of black coffee with its cap of blue flame, which
reminded me of "Deacon Giles's Distillery," in spite of protest and
direful headache _in terrorem_; and the colonel thought he was polite to
me. He chose all madame's gowns: the poor little woman did not venture
to buy even a ribbon for herself; and from having been one of the most
elegant women in Paris, she grew at length almost dowdyish; not but that
her garments were as fresh and as costly as ever, but the brilliant
colors and conspicuous styles which had suited the opera-singer, and
which heightened the beauty of Léonie, extinguished the delicate color
and soft blue eyes of Madame Regnault, and were so little in harmony
with her person and character as to have almost the effect of a discord
in music.

A year passed, and her heart was made glad by a dear little son, who was
named Léon for his father. The little fellow was six weeks old, and his
mother had scarcely left the nursery, which was a bit of heaven to her,
when Colonel Regnault startled her from her dream of bliss: "I have
found just the nurse for the baby, the wife of a small farmer who lives
close to Rosny Station. She will wean her child and take him. She is
such a fresh, healthy-looking woman, and everything is so clean and tidy
in her cottage, that you will be delighted with her, I am sure."

"Oh, Léon, may I not nurse him myself? I cannot give him up to anybody.
Who will take so good care of my little precious darling as his own
mother?"

"It is not to be thought of, Clémence: it would wear you out. See, you
are crying now: it shows how weak and nervous you are. Besides, Léonie
needs you. She is losing already, for nobody plays her accompaniments so
well as you, and I do not like to have her go to the Conservatoire with
a bonne when it can be helped: a girl so striking is likely to be
watched and followed. I never feel safe about her unless you are with
her. Don't be silly: the baby will be better off in the country."

Madame Regnault was very kind to Léonie: it was impossible for her to be
otherwise to any one. She was devoted to her for her father's sake: she
felt a thrill of delight in her beauty, in her wonderful talents; but
she did not love her. She might have loved her perhaps--though there was
not much in common between the ardent, high-spirited girl and the
gentle, patient woman, except, indeed, the taste for music--but it is
not in nature, and hardly in grace, for a woman thirsting for her
husband's love to like being always postponed to some one else. Colonel
Regnault seemed to have no perception of anything but his beautiful
daughter: his ambition was centred in her even more than his affection.
Léonie's talent developed rapidly, and his pride was fed by the praises
of her masters and the more flattering compliments of friends and
connoisseurs who were present at the musical soirées given from time to
time at his own house.

But Léonie did not contribute to the peace of the household. Her aunt
had not found it out, Madame Regnault never would have discovered it,
but her father's despotic will roused one equally defiant in her, and
when they came in contact it was the collision of flint and steel.
Léonie often carried her point against her father, and he admired her
only the more for it. The contests were quick and sharp--not very
frequent, but very unpleasant to Madame Regnault. She grew thin and pale
and spiritless. She was not yet thirty, and she had aged by half a score
of years in the year and a half of her marriage.

Her mother, Madame Dumesnil, was indignant at what she considered the
colonel's neglect of his wife, and mentally threatened to give him "a
piece of her mind." She had not long to wait for an occasion.

"I am sorry to see Clémence looking so ill," said she to him as he
entered his wife's dressing-room one day a little before breakfast--that
is to say, about noon.

"I had not noticed that she was ailing," he rejoined with a quick glance
at his wife.

"It is well that somebody has eyes," continued Madame Dumesnil. "I did
not expect that my daughter was to become a governess when she married
you. Her previous life had not prepared her for such arduous duties."

"My wife does not complain," said the colonel haughtily.

"Clémence complain! She would not complain if she suffered martyrdom."
Madame Regnault looked imploringly at her mother, but she went on more
sternly than before: "If Clémence had a spark of spirit she would never
have had Léonie in the house. It is a shame for her to be made a slave
to the opera-singer's girl, and I am not the only one who thinks so."

"Pardon me, madame," responded her son-in-law, "the conversation is too
exciting for me. I have the honor to wish you a good-morning;" and he
bowed himself out with the most exasperating courtesy.

"Oh, mother, what have you done?" cried Madame Regnault, trembling and
tearful. "How could you make him so angry?"

"How _could_ I, indeed! I wish I were his wife a little while: he
wouldn't find it so easy to tyrannize over me. I don't know where you
got your disposition from: you didn't take it from me, that's certain."

"Jacques," said Colonel Regnault to the porter as he left the house,
"when Madame Dumesnil calls to see your mistress hereafter, let me know
it, and remember that I am never at home."

Léonie, though she felt a certain hardness in the manner of Madame
Dumesnil when she happened to meet her, was wholly unaware of what was
passing in the heart of Madame Regnault, who had a genuine sympathetic
interest in the development of her remarkable powers, playing her
accompaniments unweariedly for hours daily and giving her the benefit of
her own delicate and highly-cultivated taste. They were happy years for
Léonie. Her young soul, full of the inspiration and power of genius,
felt its wings growing. There is an atmosphere of art in Paris which is
powerfully stimulating to any one of æsthetic tendencies; and how
exhilarating was this subtle atmosphere to Léonie! The Conservatoire,
with its seventy professors and its thousand students, its competitions,
concerts and public exercises, stimulated her zeal and inspired ever
higher ideals that made close, hard study the play of her fresh and
delighted faculties. Once a week her father took her to the opera. It
happened that the first opera she heard was _Faust_, and she sat as if
in a dream, white and scared, seeming to see in the scenes the spectre
of her mother. But this impression wore away, and ere many weeks had
passed her heart dilated, her eyes kindled with the triumphs of the
singer, and she felt as Correggio when he looked on Raphael's _St.
Cecilia_ and exclaimed, "I, too, am a painter!"

Thus the days went on, not too slowly, till Léonie had entered her
nineteenth year and approached the close of her studies. The finest
concerts of Paris and the most exclusive are those of the Conservatoire,
six in number, which occur once a fortnight from the middle of January
to the middle of April. Léonie had often sung in the small concert-hall
at examinations and private exercises, but now she was to sing in the
Salle de Spectacle for the celebrated Société des Concerts. This
wonderful company is composed mostly of the professors and teachers at
the Conservatoire, and it is a rare honor for a pupil to sing or play at
these concerts; but Léonie was a rare pupil, and whatever may be said of
the jealousy of artists, I hold that true genius always exults in the
recognition of genius. Léonie sang in each of the six concerts of her
last year at the Conservatoire, and her singing gave exquisite delight
to the appreciative listeners: the applause was heart-felt,
enthusiastic, inspiring. But on the last night her father's rapture and
pride reached their height. The beautiful concert-hall, so refined and
classic with its Pompeii-like decorations, was filled with the most
brilliant audience of a most brilliant city. The symphony had ended, and
Léonie was to sing some selections from the opera of _Fidelio_. The
applause which greeted her as she advanced on the stage was perhaps a
tribute to her superb beauty and perfect grace. She was paler than
usual, her large black eyes were full of that intense light which only
emotion gives, but she showed no embarrassment, and felt none. She saw
not the faces, heard not the plaudits. She was alone with her art. Her
soul went forth into the song, and one listened in rapture, touched with
pain that aught so sweet should be so evanescent. When the wonderful
voice seemed to die like a vanishing soul there was silence for a
moment--silence most eloquent of eulogies--and then came a burst of
applause, the most enthusiastic that ever relieved a listener's heart or
charmed a singer's ear.

The concert ended. Her father, proud and exultant, clasped her in his
arms. Did he hear the whispers that Léonie's quick ear caught? "Colonel
Regnault's daughter, the opera-singer's child. You remember that old
story?"--"Ah, indeed! Wonderfully like her mother: more distinguished
manner. Something of her father too. Will Regnault let her go on the
stage, do you think?"--"I cannot tell. Il est fou d'elle. He brings her
up in his own family."--"Vraiment? Good wife, Madame Regnault." Léonie
shrank involuntarily from her father's embrace.

The competitive examinations came, and naturally Léonie received the
highest prize in singing.

"I do not envy you, mademoiselle," said one of the unsuccessful
candidates with a look and tone that accentuated the sneer: "there are
other things that people inherit besides their musical talents."

"There will be plenty of spitefulness for your children to inherit,
whether there is any talent or not," retorted Léonie, her eyes flashing
with resentful pride. It was the first time that any one had
deliberately alluded to the taint upon her birth, and it stung.

"I have something to tell you," said her father to Léonie a few days
after. "The director of the opera has been talking to me about you. He
is only waiting for my consent to bring you out at the Imperial Opera."

Léonie's face lighted up with a quick gleam of surprise and pleasure,
which was followed by a sudden terror.

"You may think it strange that I felt any reluctance: you are so young
that you do not know enough of society to appreciate the objections. Not
that there are any insuperable objections. In an art-loving community
like ours the career of a great artist is prouder than a queen's."

The color had faded from Léonie's face, but her father did not notice
it.

"The empress condescended to speak to me about it to-day. Her Majesty
has the welfare of the opera very much at heart, and, as she says, one
is responsible for a talent like yours. It is the rarest of gifts. Why
not consecrate it to the elevation of art and the delight of the world?
A vocation for art is as sacred as one for religion, and it would be
almost a crime in me to hold you back from so manifest a destiny as
yours. Well, what have you to say, child?" and he looked full into his
daughter's pale, agitated face. "It is too much for you, my darling: you
are quite overcome. Think it over and tell me to-morrow night." And he
kissed her trembling lips with unusual emotion.

Léonie went to her room, but not to sleep. How short was that sleepless
night, with its whirl of conflicting resolutions, its torrent of
emotion, its ceaseless panorama of dissolving views! Opera after opera
unrolled in magical splendor before her eyes, resounded in bursts of
harmony in her ears and flowed in waves of delicious sweetness into her
heart. And in all she was queen, and hearts rose and fell at her bidding
as the ocean-waves beneath the strong and sweet compelling of the moon.
It was intoxication, but underlying it was the deep satisfaction of a
soul that has found the true outlet of its highest powers. "All the
current of her being" surged and eddied into this one career that opened
so invitingly before her. But she could not say "I will," though she
wished to do so. The glories faded and another vision came. Her mother
seemed to lie before her, dying, forsaken, remorseful, sinful. Was it
her mother? was it herself? "Art thou stronger than I?" asked the
voiceless lips.--"Yea, I am stronger," replied the soul of Léonie. And
then a sudden revelation of incipient vanities and weaknesses and pride
flashed across her consciousness as in the great light of God. Léonie
shrank away self-abased. "Did my worship of art, which I thought so
holy, hide all this?" she questioned.

The morning light came faintly through the curtained windows. Léonie
rose, dressed herself quickly, and calling a bonne went to the Madeleine
to early mass. After mass she entered the confessional of the
white-haired father who had been her spiritual guide for the three years
and a half of her life in Paris. On her return she locked herself into
her room and passed the day alone.

"Well, my girl," inquired her father in the evening, "what am I to tell
the director? Have you chosen the opera for your début already?"

"I shall never sing in the opera, father."

"Why, what is this, Léonie? If I have got over my scruples, I do not see
that you need have any. I thought it would be just what you were longing
for."

"I do long for it," said Léonie firmly, "and therefore I think it is not
best."

"Don't speak in riddles," rejoined her father angrily. "Do you
mean to tell me that you are going to throw away your glorious
possibilities--certainties, I might say--for a whim?"

"Not for a whim, but because it is right."

"It is incomprehensible!" cried the colonel, walking the floor
excitedly. "Here have you been for years in one rhapsody of music,
nothing else in life--your mother and I and everything given up to help
you on--and now, when such a prospect opens before you, a career that a
princess might envy, when even the empress condescends to solicit
it--'No, I am not going to sing. I'll throw it all away--my talent, my
father's wishes.' Oh, it is insufferable! It is just like the perverse
willfulness of women;" and he turned upon her in a white rage.

Léonie did not quail. "Father," said she, speaking very low, but with
crystal clearness, "do you wish me to be like my mother?"

Colonel Regnault staggered back. "My poor child," he whispered faintly,
"who told you that story? Who could have the heart?"

The next day Léonie, with her father's permission, went to Macon to
spend some weeks with her aunt. Soon after her departure Madame Regnault
asked, "Now that Léonie is gone, cannot we have the children home?"

"We will bring Léon home," replied her husband. "He is a fine little
fellow, and will make the house cheerful, but the baby will be better
off in the country a year longer. We will have him in for a few days if
you like, and the nurse can come with him."

"I will go out this very afternoon," said the mother. "Jeanne will go
with me."

"No, my dear, it is too hard a jaunt for you: I will go to-morrow."

"Let me go, Léon: I feel so uneasy about the children. I cannot tell
why, but it seems as if something was going to happen to them."

"What could happen to them? and what difference will a day make? I am
glad I am not a woman, to be so anxious about nothing," said the
colonel, smiling.

About eleven o'clock on the morrow the colonel reached Rosny, and was
startled as he approached the house by an appearance of unusual stir,
persons going in and out in a hurried and excited way. He entered. The
nurse rushed toward him in vehement anguish: "Oh, Colonel Regnault, you
are here! John has told you. Where is he? Did he not return with you?"

"I have not seen your husband, good woman. What is the matter? Are the
children ill? I came out for them."

"Oh, I cannot tell him! I cannot tell him!" sobbed the unhappy woman.
"The dear beautiful babies! It breaks my heart!"

"May God help you to bear it, sir: it is a heavy grief," said an aged
woman. "The little boys are dead."

"Dead!" cried the heartstricken father--"my children dead! One of them,
you mean--not both, not both!"

It was true. The baby, a dear little fellow six or seven months old,
had had for several days a cold which the nurse did not think serious:
during the night he had been attacked by croup, and about eight o'clock
in the morning, almost before the doctor had arrived, the child was
dead. Absorbed in the grief and terror of this sudden death, the nurse
forgot to mind Léon, and the restless, active child slipped out of the
house unheeded, and, playing on the railway-track, had been killed by a
passing train not an hour before his father came for him.

Colonel Regnault's grief was violent and remorseful. "I have killed my
children," he would say to his pitying friends. "If I had but listened
to my wife and had them brought up at home! What is the croup with a
watchful, intelligent mother, and a skillful physician at the very door?
and how could any accident have happened to Léon here? So many idle
servants in my house, and my own child to die for lack of care!"

Madame Regnault never knew how Léon died. The little body was not
mangled: it had been caught and thrown aside by something attached to
the engine--I do not know exactly how--and the mother was left to
believe that he had died of sickness like the baby. She bore her sorrow
with the still meekness consonant with her character, and with wifely
tenderness exerted herself to soothe her husband's violent grief.

A little later in the summer the war broke out. Colonel Regnault went
gladly, even rashly, into danger, and found neither death nor wounds,
but in his anguish for the desolation of his country he made a truce
with his own remorse.

The last time I was in Paris--which was in 1874--General and Madame
Regnault called on me at my old friend's, Madame Le Fort's. A charming
little girl about three years old was with them, a blue-eyed,
fair-haired child--very beautiful, and as much like her father as a
little girl can be like a man approaching fifty. I was not surprised to
see that she was, as her mother said, "une petite fille gâtée." I
inquired for Léonie.

"Can you believe that Léonie has not been in Paris since you saw her
here?" replied her father. "She is a thorough little provincial. She has
been married more than a year now."

"Ah, I congratulate you! I hope her marriage was pleasing to you," I
added, as he did not respond immediately.

"Assez. Her husband is a very worthy young man for a
provincial--Théophile Duprès, the brother of a little school-friend of
hers. I went down to the wedding, not to grieve Léonie, but I shall
never be reconciled to it--never! To think what that girl threw away!
Such talent! and to have it lost, utterly lost! It is inexplicable.
Every motive that could influence a girl on the one hand, and--But I
give it up. Let us not talk of it," he concluded with a little wave of
his hand, as if dismissing Léonie and all that pertained to her.

But I could not turn my thoughts from her so quickly. Even now, when I
am, so to speak, in another world, she causes me not a little
perplexity. Was she right? was she wrong? Can one ever be happy in
suppressing a great talent? How it strives and agonizes for some
manifestation of itself! and when it slowly dies, stifled in its living
grave, must not one feel a bitter regret for having slain the nobler
part of one's self?

But is it not heresy to doubt that a woman can sacrifice genius for
love, and be content--yea, glad--with an infinite joy? And why not have
love and genius too? Alas! most lives are opaque planets, like the earth
on which they are evolved, and can have only one bright side at a time.

Madame Regnault was little changed: she preserved the old sweet
gentleness and quiet refinement of manner, but she seemed more at ease
with her husband, and did not watch so timidly his least gesture.
Colonel--or rather General--Regnault had changed more. He had grown
quite gray: he was still a handsome, high-bred gentleman, with the same
exquisite urbanity of manner, but the disappointment of his ambition for
Léonie, the anguish which had smitten him for his children's death, and
the great calamity which had almost crushed France, the idol of every
Frenchman, had softened and humanized him. He was less like an Apollo
exulting in his own divinity; and when I marked his tender
thoughtfulness for his wife, his unwonted appreciation of her lovely
character, and especially his indulgence of the caprices of little
Aimée, who was almost always his companion, I was ready to believe in
his entire conversion.

But can the Ethiopian change his skin? One morning Madame Le Fort's
little dressmaker came rushing in in a very excited way: "Mon Dieu! I am
so glad to get here! Quel homme terrible!"

"What is the matter?" asked madame.

"I have just been trying on Madame Regnault's new costume, the gray
faille and velvet, you know, that she selected when she came with you.
It is a charming costume, and she looked sweetly in it. The general came
in before I got through. 'Do you call that a costume?' he asked in a
passion. 'It makes her look like a fright. Take it away: never let me
see it again.' Poor little madame hurried me to get it off. 'Take it
away! out of the house with it!' cried he as if he were commanding a
regiment of dragoons.--'I can't take it away,' said I. 'It was made to
order--madame selected it herself--and you cannot expect me to take it
back.' I was frightened to death, but I couldn't lose the money, you
know. The window was open: he seized the unlucky costume, and giving it
a little whirl, sent it flying out of the window over the balustrade.
Madame was going to send her maid for it, but no; the wind caught it,
and away it went out of the court, and where it lighted or who picked it
up is more than I know, or madame either. It may be a fine thing to be a
general's wife, but I'd rather be a dressmaker."

And the little dressmaker laughed till she cried to think of madame's
handsome costume sailing out of the window over the Avenue Haussmann,
and lighting like a balloon on the head of some lucky or luckless
passer-by.

                                          MARY E. BLAIR.



PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION IN FRANCE.


For a long period, France, with her ancient university and her venerable
scholastic institutions--which after the Renaissance drew to themselves
the flower of the youth of Europe--may be said to have led the way as
regards general education. It has only been in modern times that the
progress made by the Anglo-Saxon and German nations has placed, at all
events, primary instruction in France somewhat in the rear of other
countries. As for her system of secondary and superior education, it has
even within the last few years elicited many expressions of approval
from foreigners competent to form a judgment on the subject. In the
following pages we propose giving a succinct account of the actual
system and position of primary and secondary education in France,
speaking of what has been done since the close of the war in 1871, and
of what yet remains to be done.


PRIMARY EDUCATION.

The great crying evil in France is the lack of education among the
poorer classes, who nevertheless, by the democratic constitution of
their country, are called upon, together with the rich and the middle
classes, to take their share in the government. This evil is recognized
in France, and each fresh Assembly meets at Versailles with the
determination of having primary schools built and of having every child
taught at least to read and write. But these good intentions are
terribly hampered by the all-absorbing military appropriations, which,
swallowing up some 500,000,000 francs annually, do not allow the
ministers and deputies, well disposed as they are, to appropriate to the
education of all France a sum much exceeding that expended by the single
State of Pennsylvania in the same cause. Still, the acknowledgment of
the existence of the evil is in itself a great step toward remedying it,
and the France of to-day is making progress in this respect. Before the
last war, instead of saying with Terence,

    Homo sum; humani nihil a me alienum puto,

the French citizen might rather have cried, "I am a _Frenchman_, and
that which is not French is foreign to me." A salutary reaction has set
in since the war, and nothing is more common than to hear Frenchmen
observe that their country was conquered not by Moltke or Krupp, but
rather by the German _Schullehrer_.

We shall not enter into the merits of the long-standing dispute in
France as to the superiority of secular or of clerical education. The
parable of the mote and the beam might probably be applicable to both
parties, but no impartial observer can fail to recognize that the
triumph of Romanism in France, consequent upon the Revocation of the
Edict of Nantes, has formed one of the chief obstacles to the
development of public education in that country. Huss, Luther,
Calvin--in a word, all the leaders of the Reformation--inculcated the
sacred duty devolving upon every man of reading the Bible for himself in
his own tongue. Hence we now find education far more advanced in
Protestant than in Catholic countries--a fact which has not a little
contributed to the decadence of the Latin races. Richelieu, who held
that a hungry people was the most submissive, was also of opinion that
an ignorant people obeyed the most readily. Louis XIV. and Louis XV.,
without saying as much, acted up to the cardinal's maxim, doing
absolutely nothing for popular education. The instruction of the upper
classes was at that time in the hands of religious societies or
_congrégations_. The Revolution, displaying its usual iconoclastic zeal,
upset this system, without reflecting for a moment that it might be as
well to substitute some other system for it, and that it takes time to
organize a body of teachers fit to undertake such a work. The
Convention decreed that those parents should be punished who did not
send their children to school, overlooking the fact that there were no
schools to send them to. It proclaimed gratuitous instruction, but made
no provision for the salaries of the teachers. These hastily instituted
reforms were eminently characteristic of the feverish excitement amidst
which matters affecting the most serious interests of the nation were
disposed of. The First Empire and the Restoration saw but little done on
behalf of primary education. Under Louis Philippe the question of
gratuitous instruction and compulsory attendance got no farther,
notwithstanding the fact of such men being in power as Victor Cousin,
Villemain and Guizot.

The efforts of Jules Simon and of Barthélemy Saint-Hilaire to have the
question settled by the Republican government in 1848 proved futile.
Napoleon III., having found 44,000 schools in France at the commencement
of his reign, left it with 54,000 at its close--a most insignificant
rate of increase, as regards primary instruction, compared with the
advances made in the same direction by foreign nations, and with the
material progress of France itself during those eighteen eventful years.
The Third Republic has, as was observed above, given to the question of
education a prominent place among the reforms to be instituted. Scarcely
had the most pressing financial and military questions been dealt with
ere a searching examination into the educational system of the country
was undertaken and its defects laid bare. In a report on primary and
secondary education in different countries, read by M. Levasseur before
the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences on the 29th of May, 1875, he
establishes the fact that out of forty-five nations whose educational
statistics he had examined, France only occupies the twentieth
place--naturally a somewhat humiliating admission for a nation which has
claimed to be the centre and radiating-point of modern civilization.

The map on which the departments figure tinged with black
proportionately with the illiteracy of their inhabitants is in mourning
to a most lamentable extent. It might be taken for the geological map of
Pennsylvania, with the coal-regions indicated by black patches; and most
assuredly the Lehigh Valley would appear no darker on such a map than
does on the chart of ignorance the unfortunate department of the Ariége,
with 66 per cent. of its inhabitants absolutely illiterate. Happily,
since this map was issued matters have somewhat mended; nevertheless,
the lack of appreciation of the benefits of education is still very
noticeable in a large number of the departments.

The village schools are kept up by the communes, aided by contributions
from the department and from the government. The total annual amount of
the contributions from these three sources does not exceed 65,000,000
francs for the whole of France. Deduct from this paltry sum of
$13,000,000 a certain quota for the construction and keeping in repair
of school-houses, and it will at once be seen that what remains to be
divided among the 54,000 teachers is scarcely sufficient to afford them
even the barest subsistence. The recent reduction of school-teachers'
salaries throughout the United States has given rise to much unfavorable
comment, but happy indeed would teachers in France consider themselves
were they to receive even anything approaching the reduced pay of their
Transatlantic brethren. Of the school-teachers above spoken of, 26,000
receive 750 francs ($150) per annum, 14,000 receive 550 francs, and
10,000 but 450 francs, or less than the common farm-laborer, who has at
least food and lodging provided for him by his master. True it is that
many of the teachers receive a slight additional salary for acting as
secretary at the _mairie_; but a much larger number of them have to eke
out a scanty subsistence by manual labor during certain hours of the
day, especially in harvest-time.

As for the school-houses, they are usually in such a dilapidated
condition that the farmers would scarcely care to use them as
cattle-sheds. We have visited schools--and they exist by the score, not
to say by the hundred--without either benches or desks, blackboard or
maps, and through the roofs of which the rain poured on teachers and
pupils. On entering one of these schools and seeing the little fellows
in their torn blouses, their feet simply encased in great wooden sabots,
their lunch-baskets with coarse bread and a few nuts by their side, the
stranger can hardly realize that he is in that country where there is a
more even distribution of property, and where the peasantry are more
prosperous and conservative, than anywhere else. Among the efforts made
to improve things may be mentioned the frequent inspections, not only by
government inspectors, but also by gentlemen called _délégués
cantonaux,_ who are usually chosen from among the landed proprietary of
the neighborhood by the prefects.

"Paris is not France," is a remark frequently uttered by French
conservatives, and one which certainly holds good as regards education.
The department of the Seine actually expends some $6,000,000 annually on
education, which is something over 46 per cent. of the total expenditure
for all France under this head. Considering that the population of the
department of the Seine does not exceed 2,400,000, it will be seen that
the expenditure there for educational purposes is not inferior to that
of our own representative States. At the Vienna Exhibition of 1873 it
may be recollected that Paris, conjointly with Saxony and Sweden, was
awarded the diploma of honor for primary instruction. This branch of
education is absolutely gratuitous, and, in view of the experience of
other countries, is likely to remain so, in spite of the outcry that
parents able to contribute toward the education of their offspring
should be compelled to do so. Ink, paper, pens, books, models and maps
are supplied free of charge to each pupil. During 1876 not less than
330,000 books, 1,490,000 copy-books and 1,440,000 steel pens were thus
supplied in the primary schools of the capital. In Paris there are some
260,000 children of both sexes old enough to go to school. Of this
number, 104,000 get some kind of education, either at home or at the
boarding-schools, and 134,000 attend the public schools--either under
secular or clerical management--and the _salles d'asile_, of which we
shall presently speak. The great capital thus contains some 22,000
children who cannot read or write, and this will account for the fact of
the educational status of the department of the Seine being inferior to
that of many of the eastern departments, and occupying a far lower place
on the list than might otherwise have been expected. Up to the age of
two years the infants of parents too poor to watch over their offspring
in the daytime are admitted into the _crèches_. In these admirable
private institutions--founded some thirty years ago by M. Marbeau--the
infants are washed, fed and tended with maternal solicitude. Between the
ages of two and six years the children are admitted into the _salles
d'asile_, or children's homes, of which there are over a hundred in
Paris. There it is first sought to develop the child's intellectual
faculties, prepare it for school, inculcate habits of cleanliness and
morality, and instruct it in the rudiments of reading and writing.
Between the ages of six and fourteen children are admitted into the
schools, and, nominally at least, go through the plan of study drawn up
by the board of primary education, and which is as follows: Reading,
writing, geography, spelling, arithmetic, compendium of sacred and
French history, linear drawing, singing, the rudiments of physics,
geometry and natural history, and calligraphy. Were this programme
carried out in its integrity, education in France would, it need hardly
be said, be considerably further advanced than it is at present. Even in
Paris, however, the material obstacles are not slight. Most of the
schools are far too cramped for space, especially in those wealthy and
crowded parts of the city between the Rue de Rivoli and the Boulevards,
for instance, where every foot of ground and every breathing-space are
worth large sums of money. In a city where the people are so closely
packed, and where a family is content to live on a flat, how is room to
be found for spacious, airy school-buildings, with a detached seat and
desk for each pupil, a large central hall and a play-ground adjoining?
Such establishments must inevitably cost immense sums of money, but
Paris, if we may judge by the annual increase in the educational
appropriations, seems determined not to let this difficulty stand in the
way of her children obtaining a good education.

A word as to the teachers. The female lay teachers are, it must be
acknowledged, very greatly inferior to the lady teachers in the United
States. It is said that in England when a man has failed at everything
else he becomes a coal-merchant. We should not dream of applying this
remark to French ladies as regards school-teaching. At the same time, it
is an established fact that the French girls' schools which are managed
by nuns, and especially those of the Sisters of St. Vincent de Paul, are
far above the other female educational establishments. Most of the male
lay teachers are appointed from the primary normal schools which exist
in the chief town of every department; and it is a noteworthy fact that
the majority of them are ardent Republicans, notwithstanding the fact
that during the Empire every effort was made to win them over to the
imperial side. In every normal and primary school was the bust of
Napoleon, and a liberal distribution took place of the famous _Journal
des Instituteurs_, every paragraph of which, political or educational,
was dressed up in Napoleonic attire. Possibly, some of the lay primary
school-teachers may have adopted republicanism out of a spirit of
natural opposition to their old adversaries and competitors, the
_instituteurs congréganistes_. Of these, too, a word must be said. While
in the secondary clerical schools most of the instructors are Jesuits,
in the primary schools most of the teachers belong to the confraternity
of the _École Chrétienne_, the members of which, without taking the vows
and assuming a lifelong engagement, agree nevertheless to remain single,
to submit to the discipline of the society and to wear the
ecclesiastical dress. Strict Ultramontanists, these brethren have been
somewhat unjustly nicknamed the _frères Ignorantins_. Living as they do
in common, with but few wants, and receiving, whenever they require it,
pecuniary aid from the wealthy party to which they belong, they are
satisfied with a rate of pay less than one-half that of the lay
teachers, and are thus preferred in a large number of communes on the
simple ground of economy. Their plan of instruction is the same as that
adopted in the secular primary schools, except that religious
instruction and exercises of course play a larger part with them than
with their lay brethren. The ultra radicals, who in a large measure
control the educational appropriations in the town-council, are bitterly
opposed to any portion of the public instruction remaining in the hands
of the clerical element, and their most strenuous efforts are used to
have all these _congregational_ schools of both sexes closed. They would
concentrate the entire national educational system under the control of
a body of lay teachers to be paid by the towns and by the state. In
these views they are supported by the Republican party, while the clergy
have on their side the majority of the Senate. Whether the absence of
clerical competition would be likely to prove advantageous or not to the
secular educational establishments, we shall not attempt to say, but
certain it is that the long continuance of this bitter feud between the
two parties has been anything but conducive to the educational progress
of France.

At the age of fourteen the Parisian youth not intended for one of the
learned professions leaves school to learn a trade. Should he desire to
increase his stock of knowledge and have a taste for study, he can,
after passing an examination, enter the excellent École Turgot, wherein
the programme of the primary schools is somewhat extended, without,
however, embracing the study of Latin and Greek. At the Turgot the
course comprises mathematics, linear and ornamental drawing, physics and
mechanics, chemistry, natural history, calligraphy, bookkeeping, French
language and literature, history, geography, English and German. All the
pupils are day scholars. There could probably be no better devised
programme for developing and exercising the intellectual faculties of
those who have gone through the primary schools, and it may
unhesitatingly be affirmed that for most of the pupils the training
received at the École Turgot is of lifelong value.

If a youth aim yet higher, he can apply for admittance at the Collége
Chaptal, where he may eventually obtain gratuitously a classical
education, and at its close a university degree. From the Chaptal
school--the new building devoted to which forms a conspicuous feature on
the Boulevard des Batignolles--the pupil may, on passing an examination,
enter either of the two higher colleges, the Central or the Polytechnic.
Then, too, the Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers may be looked on in the
light of a magnificent annex to the schools of primary instruction. The
idea of such an institution originated with the celebrated mechanician
of the last century, Vaucanson, who bequeathed to the government his
splendid collection of models, drawings, tools, machines and automatons.
The Convention decreed the establishment of the Conservatoire, which now
contains some 12,000 models in its industrial museum. Among them may be
mentioned Pascal's arithmetical machine, Lavoisier's instruments, the
first highway locomotive constructed by Cugniot in 1770, a lock forged
by Louis XVI., clocks and watches of historic interest, and those
patents which have run out by lapse of time. The machinery is set in
motion at certain hours of the day, during which the public is admitted
free. The library, rich in works of science, art and industry, is always
open. In the evening there are gratuitous lectures delivered by men of
science on such subjects as geometry, mechanics and chemistry applied to
the arts, industrial and agricultural chemistry, agriculture,
spinning-looms, dyeing, etc. The Conservatoire turns out the best
foremen and heads of workshops to be found in Paris. It occupies the
fine old building once used as the abbey of St. Martin des Champs, which
has been tastefully restored in the original style, and takes up one of
the sides of a handsome square laid out with flowers and fountains.

Nor must we pass over entirely unnoticed the admirable gratuitous
lectures given by the Polytechnic Association--_not_ the Polytechnic
School--on such subjects as hygiene, linear drawing, French grammar,
bookkeeping and geometry. These lectures are held in some twenty
different buildings, so as to be within the reach of the
working-classes, no matter what part of Paris they may reside in. Among
the lecturers in recent years are to be found such names as those of
Ferdinand de Lesseps, Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, Barral and Batbie.

We have thus rapidly seen what Paris does for her poor youth. The city
has often been called the focus of light and the centre of intelligence.
Without going quite so far as this, it must nevertheless be acknowledged
that with her public schools, her splendid libraries, her museums, her
natural history and art collections, and her very numerous and valuable
institutions open free to all, Paris affords unusual facilities for
boys, taken even from the lowest strata of society, to rise by dint of
hard study, a firm will and exemplary conduct to the very highest
positions.


SECONDARY EDUCATION.

In France, children of parents in easy circumstances do not go to the
primary schools at all. Every man occupying a higher social position
than that of a mechanic does his utmost to procure for his children an
education which shall place them above what the French call "the common
people." Even a small farmer, with but a few thousand dollars at his
command, strives to place his son in an institution where the higher
cultivation of the intellectual faculties, the dress worn, and the very
bearing, shall distinguish him from one of "the people." It need hardly
be said that such a system as this, so diametrically opposed to that
which prevails in the United States, tends to foster somewhat of
jealousy and bitterness among the lower classes. As for those who have
received this higher education, they would, as a general rule, consider
it derogatory to their dignity ever in after life to perform any manual
labor: this they leave to the illiterate and to those who have only
attended the primary schools. The result may be imagined in the case of
those whose parents, having paid their eight or nine years' schooling,
are unable to do anything more for their offspring when they leave
college. They cannot all earn their living in a professional capacity,
or in the literary field, or as government employés, or, to be brief, in
one of those situations which a graduate _can_ accept; and those who
fail, insensibly and by degrees fall into the ranks of the _déclassés_.
The common workman may occasionally and for a short period suffer
privation and want, but that becomes the chronic condition of the poor
graduate. He becomes a misanthrope, hates his fellow-beings and resorts
to petty shifts in order to live. Gradually his sense of honor and his
moral feelings get weaker and weaker, and finally disappear altogether.
Then he becomes one of those men who, like the conspirators denounced by
Corneille,

    Si tout n'est renversé ne sauraient subsister.

These men take a prominent part in every _émeute_, haranguing the
populace, propagating socialistic theories, and gaining a baneful
influence over the uneducated and the discontented among the workingmen,
thus causing that bloodshed and destruction of which Paris has so often
been the scene. Probably no more vivid picture of the life of these
unfortunate persons has ever been drawn than that which Jules Vallès has
given us in his _Réfractaires_. Most eloquently does he describe the
vain hopes and reveries by which these men are elated, and the poignant
misery they suffer. Vallès, it will be recollected, was a Communist, a
member of that revolutionary government which contained so many of these
_déclassés_.

Far be it from us to desire to limit the higher education to the
children of the rich. By all means let every man in a position to do so
give his sons the benefit of the secondary education. The fittest will
always survive, the weakest inevitably go to the wall. At the same time,
there are certain modifications which all will admit may be introduced
with advantage into the present system, and these will become apparent
as we proceed.

Secondary education is imparted in the national lyceums, which are
established and governed by the state, and which now exist in eighty out
of the eighty-six departments; in the municipal colleges, which are
established and governed by the towns; and in the private colleges, the
majority of which are kept by religious fraternities.

The most celebrated of the private colleges are Arcueil and Sorèze, both
of which belong to the Dominicans. The principal professors at Arcueil
were, it will be recollected, taken to La Roquette in 1871, and there
shot with Archbishop Darboy and the other hostages. Sorèze will not be
forgotten so long as the memory of Lacordaire lives. The Fathers of the
Oratory own the college of Juilly, where Berryer and Montalembert were
educated. It was to this order that belonged the illustrious Massillon a
century and a half ago, and Father Gratry in our own time. As for the
Jesuits, their colleges are distributed over the whole of France, and
are distinguished for their comfort and elegance, their spacious halls,
their fine grounds and the excellent gymnasia attached thereto. Their
superiority over the national lyceums leads to the fact of their being
as well attended as the latter, although pupils at the Jesuits' colleges
pay three times as much as at the government schools. The large college
of the Jesuits in the Rue des Postes at Paris furnishes a heavy
contingent to St. Cyr and the polytechnic schools. The Stanislas
College, although a private institution, has its corps of professors
appointed by the Minister of Public Instruction, and its pupils are
privileged to take part in the general examinations of the lyceum
pupils. M. John Lemoinne, the eminent writer for the _Journal des
Débats_, was educated at the Stanislas College, all the pupils of which,
it may be mentioned, are day scholars. At the Rollin College only
boarders are admitted.

There are quite a number of foreign colleges at Paris, such as the
Egyptian, the Japanese, the Armenian and the Polish colleges. The former
Irish college, now called _Collége des Fondations britanniques_, is
under the patronage of the French Minister of Education. It is here that
young men speaking the English language are specially educated for the
priesthood, the whole of the instruction being given in English and the
management being in the hands of British and Irish ecclesiastics. About
15,200 scholars attend the private colleges in Paris.

Proceeding now to speak of the actual condition of the _lycées_, or
lyceums, it may at once be stated that boarders at one of these
establishments in Paris pay from $200 to $300 annually, and in the
provinces from $150 to $200, according to age. Considering that this one
charge covers board, instruction, books, washing, clothes, writing
materials, medical attendance and medicine, it will readily be
understood that the income from this source is totally inadequate to
meet the outlays. The government, besides providing a large number of
gratuitous scholarships, makes up the deficit, whatever it may be, and
thus really maintains the lyceums. There are in Paris five national
lycées, besides the lyceum at Vanves, situated at a little distance to
the south of the capital, at what was once the villa of the prince de
Condé, on the Vaugirard route. At Vanves the younger pupils have the
opportunity afforded them of pursuing their studies in the country, and
only entering one of the Paris lycées when they have worked themselves
into the fifth class. The most famous as well as the largest of the
lyceums of Paris is the Lycée Descartes, formerly called the Lycée
Louis-le-Grand. It stands in the Rue St. Jacques, on the spot formerly
occupied by the Jesuits' Collége de Clermont, which was founded in 1563,
and confiscated when the Jesuits were expelled from France by the duc de
Choiseul in 1764. As is well known, Molière and Voltaire, two of the
bitterest enemies of the Jesuits, were educated at the Collége de
Clermont. At Louis-le-Grand were also educated Crébillon, the author of
the _Sopha_; Gresset, the writer of _Vert-vert_; Robespierre, Camille
Desmoulins, Crémieux, Eugène Delacroix, Victor Hugo; the eminent surgeon
Dupuytren; Jules Janin, Villemain, Littré and Laboulaye. At present 540
of its 1200 pupils are day scholars.

Sainte-Barbe, the most celebrated of the free colleges of Paris, sends
its pupils to the course of instruction at the Lycée Descartes.
Sainte-Barbe was founded in 1460 by the Abbé Lenormand, and reorganized
after the Revolution by Delaneau: it stands in the Place du Panthéon, on
a small plot of ground, and is so thickly surrounded by buildings that
the play-ground is not even large enough for the pupils to move about
in. The younger among them are therefore sent to the branch of the
school at Fontenay-aux-Roses, a stately château with spacious grounds.
Both Ignatius Loyola, who founded the order of Jesus, and Calvin, who
did his best to destroy it, were educated at Sainte-Barbe, as were also
in more modern times Eugène Scribe, the singer Nourrit, the celebrated
painter in water-colors Eugène Lamy, and General Trochu. The present
director of Sainte-Barbe is M. Dubief, formerly inspector of the Academy
of Paris, and who succeeded in 1865 the lamented M. Labrouste, to whose
untiring exertions Sainte-Barbe owes in great part the high reputation
it has enjoyed in recent times.

On the Boulevard St. Michel, on the spot where once stood the old
Collége d'Harcourt, is the Lycée St. Louis, now called, after the famous
mathematician, the Lycée Monge. Although the Lycée Monge is specially
devoted to scientific training, it has numbered among its pupils Charles
Gounod the composer and Egger the Hellenist.

In the rear of the Panthéon, on the site of the abbey of Ste. Geneviève,
founded by Clovis in 510, stands the Lycée Corneille, formerly called
the Lycée Napoléon, and before that the Collége Henri IV. To the
archæologist the cellars, the kitchens, the chapel and the old tower of
the twelfth century cannot fail to prove of the greatest interest, while
the remainder of the structure, built during the reign of Louis XIV.,
makes this unquestionably the finest of the lyceums of Paris. At the
Lycée Corneille were educated Casimir Delavigne (whose bust by David
d'Angers adorns the interior), Sainte-Beuve, Haussmann, Alfred de
Musset, St. Marc Girardin, Émile Augier, Remusat, the prince de
Joinville and the dukes of Nemours, Aumale, Montpensier and Chartres.
The three lyceums above mentioned are on the left bank, the remaining
two on the right bank, of the Seine.

In the Rue Caumartin, near the Havre railway-station, on the site of the
Capuchins' convent, stands the Lycée Condorcet, or, as it was called
until recently, the Lycée Bonaparte. All the pupils are day scholars,
and most of them come from the adjacent wealthy district of the Chaussée
d'Antin, the Boulevards and the Madeleine. Among the pupils of this
aristocratic educational establishment may be named J. J. Ampère,
Alexandre Dumas _fils_, Adolphe Adam the composer, Edmond and Jules de
Goncourt the novelists, Alphonse Karr, Henry Monnier, Nadar, Taine,
Eugène Sue; the mulatto Schælcher, now Senator of France; the celebrated
Jesuit Father Ravignan, and the poet Théodore de Banville.

The Lycée Charlemagne is in a building in the Rue St. Antoine, formerly
used as the Jesuits' convent. Being situated in one of the poorest
sections of Paris, the children from which as a rule do not get beyond
the primary schools, it receives most of its scholars from the numerous
boarding-schools of the Quartier du Marais. Among the many well-known
names formerly on the roll of the Lycée Charlemagne are those of Gustave
Doré, Théophile Gautier, Admiral Jurien de la Gravière, Michelet; the
dramatic critic Francisque Sarcey; Got the comedian, and Buffet the
statesman.

These five lyceums of Paris, with their 7500 day scholars and boarders,
and the eighty lyceums in the provinces, have precisely the same
programme and rules of government throughout. The boarders are divided
into three sections, the first being for the _petits_--viz., boys
averaging from seven to twelve, who are instructed in the elementary
course, comprising the eighth and seventh classes; the second is for the
_moyens_, who receive instruction in the grammar course, comprising the
sixth, fifth and fourth classes; the third is for the _grands_, who,
taking their place in the third and second classes, proceed with the
higher course, embracing rhetoric, philosophy, and, if desired, special
mathematics. Although at playtime the boys meet in a common play-ground,
during school-hours they are distributed in different rooms or studies
(_études_), one class generally corresponding to a study. There is thus
the eighth, fourth or second study, just as there is the eighth, fourth
or second class. The professors--of whom there are from fifteen to
thirty, the number of boys ranging from three hundred to twelve
hundred--superintend the classes, while the dozen poor, ill-paid ushers
have to keep order in the _études_. The scholars signify their contempt
for the ushers--officially known as _maîtres répétiteurs_--by nicknaming
them _pions_ or watch-dogs. Yet not an usher but is appointed, like all
others engaged in the lycée, by the minister. Each one of them has
obtained his degree as bachelor, and many only accept the situation as a
means of economically pursuing their studies toward the higher degrees
and fellowships. Where the class is a large one, the corresponding study
is usually divided into two, so as to reduce the number in one _étude_
to about thirty. The lads making up each _étude_ sleep in one dormitory
on little iron bedsteads, only separated from each other by the width of
the bed. The usher in charge sleeps at the extremity of the dormitory,
his bed being the only one provided with curtains.

A boy entering the lyceum at seven or eight years of age has already
learned the rudiments, and is accordingly placed in the eighth class. In
those exceptional cases where the boy comes to school unable to read or
write he passes the first year in the preparatory class. In the eighth
class, and the next year in the seventh, he is taught French grammar,
spelling, arithmetic, sacred history and elementary Latin exercises and
translation. In the sixth and fifth and the fourth classes the Latin
authors the boy has to study become gradually more and more difficult.
The professor of history who accompanies the students throughout their
lyceum course, instructs them as they advance each year to a higher
class, in Greek and Roman history and modern and ancient geography. So
also the professors of English and German, of physics, natural history
and mathematics keep up with their pupils, and guide their studies, each
in his special branch, until they graduate. Drawing and music are also
taught without extra charge two hours a week, but those children whose
parents really desire them to make progress in these special branches
have to take--and pay extra for--private lessons called _répétitions_.
In the third and second classes, as also when the pupils are going
through the course of rhetoric, Greek as well as Latin is studied,
together with the French classic authors, Corneille, Racine, Molière,
Bossuet, Boileau, La Bruyère, La Fontaine, Fénelon, Massillon and some
of Voltaire's works. The history of France is also studied, but scarcely
with that thoroughness which characterizes the study of history in the
German gymnasia.

The pupil's last year is passed in the philosophy class, formerly called
the logic class, which is specially devoted to the study of the human
understanding; thus, as Mr. Matthew Arnold well puts it, "making the
pupil busy himself with the substance of ideas, as in rhetoric he busied
himself with their form, and developing his reflection as rhetoric
developed his imagination and taste." During this last year, however,
classic studies are pursued with none the less vigor, for on his
proficiency in these branches depends very largely the student's success
at the second and final examination for his degree. It is only since
1874 that this examination has been divided into two parts--the first
at the close of the year of rhetoric, the second at the close of the
year of philosophy, the student being required to pass on both
occasions. Each of the two examinations is divided into the _épreuve
écrite_ and the _épreuve orale_. In the latter the candidate is examined
generally on all the subjects studied. The épreuve écrite consists, the
first year, of a translation and Latin discourse--the second year, of a
Latin dissertation and a French dissertation. Those educated in Paris
have to pass their examination at the Sorbonne, while those educated in
the provinces are examined by one of the sixteen faculties of France, at
Poitiers, Caen, Toulouse, Bordeaux, etc. It is scarcely necessary to
observe that the bachelor's degree confers no sort of privilege in
France. The diploma which attests to its recipient having passed through
a regular course of classical study opens up no career to him, but
_with_ this diploma he can study law or medicine or qualify for the
special schools, such as the Polytechnic, St. Cyr and the normal
schools, and on leaving these his position is assured.

The life led by the boarders at the _lycées_ is as follows: At six
o'clock in summer, and at half-past six in winter, the pupils get up at
the sound of the drum. Ten minutes are allowed for dressing, and then
they all march in procession to the preparation-room. One of the lads
recites a short prayer in Latin, after which the boys study till
half-past seven. They then proceed to the refectory, where all the
pupils breakfast together, ten minutes being allowed for the meal.
Thence the boys go into the play-ground, where the ranks are broken and
a quarter of an hour is allowed for play and talk. (Out of the
play-ground conversation among the pupils is prohibited by the rules,
and not infrequently those caught talking are punished.) From eight to
ten the boys are in school; from ten to half-past ten, at play; from
half-past ten to twelve, in the study, writing exercises, getting ready
for classes and solving problems. At twelve o'clock, dinner, then play
till one; from one till two, in the study, learning by heart lessons
for recitation; from two till four, school; from four to five, play;
from five to half-past seven in the study, where the exercises for the
following morning are written. At half-past seven, supper, then another
prayer in Latin, and then to bed. On Thursdays and Sundays there are no
classes, but the boys have their hours of study as on other days, and
fill up the time by a two-hours' walk in marching array, either in the
city or (if weather permit) in the country. Once a week in Paris, once a
fortnight in the provinces, a boy may go out for a holiday if his
parents or persons authorized by his parents come and take him from
school. He is allowed to see his parents or those representing them any
day between four and five P.M. in the _parloir_. On Sundays attendance
at mass and at vespers in the chapel of the lycée is compulsory for
pupils of the Roman Catholic faith. Pupils belonging to other faiths
have in Paris every opportunity for attending the services of their
religion, but in the provinces this is naturally not so easy. The
regular holidays are the 1st and 2d of January, a week at Easter and two
months in summer, commencing about the 10th of August. All corporal
punishment is strictly prohibited. The lads are punished by being kept
in in play-hours and on holidays, and in grave cases by being confined
_en séquestre_. It is very rarely that a pupil is expelled--a punishment
which may in extreme cases entail expulsion from every lyceum in France.

As will have been seen, the life led by the boarders at the lyceums is
pretty irksome and severe. If a boy's parents live in the city, he can
simply attend the classes as a day scholar, which experience has proved
to be the better of the two plans. From a sanitary point of view the
lyceums do not stand high by any means. Few among them were built on any
proper model, or, as will have been noticed, even constructed for their
present use. About four-fifths of them were old colleges belonging to
religious corporations confiscated at the Revolution, or they were
formerly convents, and have now been fitted up as well as possible for
purely educational purposes. The rooms are for the most part so small
that the lads are crowded and huddled together. On some of the benches
they have to sit on one side when they want to write. Every lyceum has
an infirmary, to which are attached two or three Sisters of Charity, and
the infirmary is often fuller than could be wished. The play-grounds are
in general miserably small, rarely planted with trees, and ill adapted
for boys to run about and play in. Some of the boys who are always kept
in do not get even this poor exercise. The contributions of the
government for the maintenance of the lyceums being on a somewhat
parsimonious scale, every kind of economy is practiced. The food,
without being unwholesome, is far from being agreeable. The lighting of
the buildings by oil lamps, not by gas, is often insufficient, and may
possibly explain the fact of so many Frenchmen being short-sighted. The
rooms are warmed in winter by small stoves, which send out noxious
vapors.

At the head of every lyceum is a provost (_proviseur_), who is assisted
by a _censeur_ or superintendent of instruction, by an inspector of
studies, and by a bursar (_économe_), who controls the finances of the
establishment. Toward the end of each scholastic year, about July, ten
or a dozen of the brightest youths are selected from each of the classes
in the lyceums of Paris, and are made to undergo an examination in
composition at the Sorbonne. At its close prizes and _accessits_ are
awarded, and these are distributed about the 15th of August in the
amphitheatre of the Sorbonne, and in presence of a distinguished
assemblage under the presidency of the Minister of Public Instruction.
The minister, having opened the proceedings with a speech in French, is
followed by one of the professors, who, in accordance with a custom more
than a century old, makes a speech in Latin. Since 1865 the provincial
lyceums have competed among themselves, and as the subjects of
composition are the same as those in the Paris lyceums, an opportunity
is afforded for observing how very much farther advanced are the
Parisian establishments than those in the interior. Not only has Paris
the best professors, but also the best boys, many having been sent
thither by their parents from the provincial lyceums on their displaying
marked ability and intelligence. Thus the standard of the Paris lyceums
is raised. Upon the result of the general examination undergone by the
pupils of a public or private school depends the estimation in which
that institution is held by the public. The more prizes taken by a
lyceum or by an institution sending its pupils to the lyceum
examinations, the greater will be the number of parents sending their
children thither. The successful participants who have carried off the
prizes of honor in special mathematics, philosophy and Latin are exempt
from military service, while the professors of the class to which they
belonged are often rewarded with the cross of the Legion of Honor. It
will therefore be apparent that the heads of the educational
establishments are, to say the least, quite as much interested in the
results of the contest as are the pupils themselves. The natural
consequence is, that the professors devote themselves to cramming those
pupils whose assiduity and superior intelligence mark them out as fit
partakers in such a contest. There are sometimes as many as sixty pupils
in a class in the Paris Lycée, and yet the professor's attention may be
confined to barely a dozen among them. The rest of the class read
novels, go to sleep or remain listless during the lesson. The well-known
writer M. Maxime du Camp may possibly have slightly exaggerated the evil
when he asserted that "Ceux-là seuls travaillent qui se destinent aux
écoles spéciales;" but we have no difficulty in believing his statement
that on one occasion M. Émile Saisset--since a member of the Institute,
then professor at the Lycée Henri IV.--left the platform, and taking a
seat facing the front row, where he had got together the six best (_plus
forts_), began reading to them in a low tone. When one of the other
pupils began talking too loud, the professor cried out, "Ne faites donc
pas tant de bruit: vous nous empêchez de causer."

But, although these general examinations may operate somewhat
disadvantageously toward the duller members of the class, it must be
acknowledged that they have had the effect of inducing many a youth to
put forth his best efforts in order to attain special distinction, and
have thus laid the foundation of future success. Among those with whom
such has been the case may be mentioned the names of Delille the poet,
La Harpe the critic, Victor Cousin the philosopher, Adrien de Jussieu
the naturalist, Drouyn de Lhuys, ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs, now
president of the Agricultural Society of France; Taine, Edmond About,
Prévost Paradol, etc.

Within the last thirty years the plan of study in the lycées has
undergone many changes. Each successive Minister of Education has
instituted some modifications, and the result has generally been an
improvement. The most thoroughgoing revision took place under M. Jules
Simon, who was Minister of Public Instruction in 1872. A well-known
member of the Institute and professor of philosophy, M. Paul Janet, in
defending the reforms instituted by M. Simon, makes some bold remarks on
the subject. Secondary education in France is now composed of two
branches of instruction mingled, which if separated might, according to
M. Janet, each for itself furnish the materials for a very thorough and
wide-reaching education. On the one hand is the classical course,
consisting of Greek and Latin, and on the other what may be termed the
modern course, composed of French, living foreign languages, history,
geography, science and physical exercises,--these last embracing
fencing, gymnastics, gun-practice, etc. Society at the time of the
Renaissance had to be steeped once again in the study of classical
literature in order to weld anew the links of that chain which had been
broken by the invasion of the barbarians. So also, reasons M. Janet, it
is necessary now for us to be prepared for the new conditions of modern
and contemporary civilization. This civilization, he goes on to say, is
marked by three distinguishing characteristics: the prodigious
development of science and industry; the establishment of political
institutions more or less liberal; the extension of the means of
communication between various nations. Therefore he holds that the study
of science should occupy a more prominent place in the system of French
instruction. History, useless in a country despotically governed,
becomes more and more necessary in a free country. Foreign languages and
the literature of the Teutonic and English-speaking nations must occupy
a larger place in the new plan of studies.

But the question arises, How can place be found for new studies when
some of the old ones have to be crowded out? Evidently this can only be
done by circumscribing within narrower limits classical instruction.
Now-a-days, says M. Jules Simon, "on apprend les langues vivantes pour
les parler et les langues mortes pour les lire." The day is past when
Santeul gained for himself a reputation by his Latin verse, and when
Cardinal de Polignac refuted Lucretius in his own tongue. Latin
compositions have become purely artificial exercises, and the art of
writing Latin must be sacrificed, just as the art of speaking Latin was
sacrificed a century ago. Therefore it was that M. Simon did away with
Latin verse. He retained for the present Latin speeches and
dissertations, but contemplated abolishing these too in the future; and
he proposed that there should be two kinds of exposition of Latin texts
in the classes--the one very profound, and where much time should be
given to but a few lines; the other, on the contrary, very rapid and
extended, having for its object to exercise the pupil in reading and
readily understanding what he reads. Since the reforms of 1872 the
pupils read Latin with not less facility than before; which seems to
show that Latin verse was not indispensable. It should also be mentioned
that under M. Simon's auspices a law was made in 1872 requiring every
pupil to pass an examination before being promoted from a lower to a
higher class in the lycée. Those who fail in this examination, and who
do not care to return to the lower class, are transferred to the
so-called _classes de science_, where the subjects of study are
mathematics, geometry, physics, chemistry and natural history.

M. Jules Simon retired from his post as Minister of Public Instruction
under M. Thiers on the 24th of May, 1873, and the reforms he had
instituted were overthrown by the clerical ministry which followed. The
Republican elections of the 20th of February, 1876, having been the
means of once more placing the government in the hands of M. Simon's
friends, he himself was on the 12th of December last made president of
the Council of Ministers, while M. Waddington resumed the portfolio of
Public Instruction. M. Waddington, who besides being a Rugby and
Cambridge man, has, like M. Simon, taken the doctor's degree at the
Sorbonne, at once took measures to carry out the liberal and progressive
reforms we have spoken of. His efforts were, however, frustrated by the
enforced retirement of the Jules Simon ministry on the 16th of May,
1877, and the accession of the conservatives to power. There can be
little doubt that the new ministry will set aside all the reforms
planned and executed, and will return to the old paths until the seesaw
of public opinion in France shall once more re-establish the
Simon-Waddington reforms.

As has been shown, the progress made in the system of secondary
instruction in France is but slow: indeed, it may be compared to that of
certain pilgrims, who in fulfillment of their vows take three steps
forward and two backward. Nevertheless, these party struggles and
tentative efforts cannot fail in the end to result in a marked
definitive improvement in the educational system. Before all things, it
was necessary that the fallibility of the old system and of the
antiquated shibboleths of instruction, which had hitherto exercised
undisputed sway, be recognized. The rest will follow in due time.
Whether minister or not, M. Jules Simon may justly claim the credit of
having brought about a salutary educational crisis, the effects of which
will be felt by the next, if not by the present, generation.

                             C. H. HARDING.



THE MARQUIS OF LOSSIE.

BY GEORGE MACDONALD, AUTHOR OF "MALCOLM."


CHAPTER LVII.

THE SHORE.

It was two days after the longest day of the year, when there is no
night in those regions, only a long twilight in which many dream and do
not know it. There had been a few days of variable weather, with sudden
changes of wind to east and north, and round again by south to west, and
then there had been a calm for several days. But now the little wind
there was blew from the north-east, and the fervor of a hot June was
rendered more delicious by the films of flavoring cold that floated
through the mass of heat. All Portlossie more or less, the Seaton
especially, was in a state of excitement, for its little neighbor
Scaurnose was more excited still. There the man most threatened, and
with greatest injustice, was the only one calm amongst the men, and
amongst the women his wife was the only one that was calmer than he.
Blue Peter was resolved to abide the stroke of wrong, and not resist the
powers that were, believing them in some true sense--which he found it
hard to understand when he thought of the factor as the individual
instance--ordained of God. He had a dim perception too that it was
better that one, and that one he, should suffer, than that order should
be destroyed and law defied. Suffering, he might still in patience
possess his soul, and all be well with him; but what would become of the
country if every one wronged were to take the law into his own hands?
Thousands more would be wronged by the lawless in a week than by unjust
powers in a year. But the young men were determined to pursue their plan
of resistance, and those of the older and soberer who saw the
uselessness of it gave themselves little trouble to change the minds of
the rest. Peter, although he knew they were not at rest, neither
inquired what their purpose might be, nor allowed any conjecture or
suspicion concerning it to influence him in his preparations for
departure. Not that he had found a new home. Indeed, he had not heartily
set about searching for one--in part because, unconsciously to himself,
he was buoyed up by the hope he read so clear in the face of his more
trusting wife that Malcolm would come to deliver them. His plan was to
leave her and his children with certain friends at Port Gordon: he would
not hear of going to the Partans to bring them into trouble. He would
himself set out immediately after for the Lewis fishing. Few had gone
from Scaurnose or Portlossie. The magnitude of the events that were
about to take place, yet more the excitement and interest they
occasioned, kept the most of the men at home, and they contented
themselves with fishing the waters of the Moray Frith--not without
notable success. But what was success with such a tyrant over them as
the factor, threatening to harry their nests and turn the sea-birds and
their young out of their heritage of rock and sand and shingle? They
could not keep house on the waves any more than the gulls. Those who
still held their religious assemblies in the cave called the Baillies'
Barn met often, read and sang the comminatory psalms more than any
others, and prayed much against the wiles and force of their enemies
both temporal and spiritual; while Mr. Crathie went every Sunday to
church, grew redder in the nose and hotter in the temper.

Miss Horn was growing more and more uncomfortable concerning events, and
dissatisfied with Malcolm. She had not for some time heard from him, and
here was his most important duty unattended to--she would not yet say
neglected--the well-being of his tenantry left in the hands of an
unsympathetic, self-important underling, who was fast losing all the
good sense he had once possessed! Were the life and history of all
these brave fishermen and their wives and children to be postponed to
the pampered feelings of one girl, and that because she was what she had
no right to be--namely, his half-sister? said Miss Horn to herself, that
bosom friend to whom some people, and those not the worst, say oftener
what they do not mean than what they do. She had written to him within
the last month a very hot letter indeed, which had afforded no end of
amusement to Mrs. Catanach as she sat in his old lodging over the
curiosity-shop, but, I need hardly say, had not reached Malcolm; and now
there was but one night and the best of all the fisher families would
have nowhere to lie down. Miss Horn, with Joseph Mair, thought she did
well to be angry with Malcolm.

The blind piper had been very restless all day. Questioned again and
again by his Mistress Partan as to what was amiss with him, he had given
her odd and evasive answers. Every few minutes he got up--even from
cleaning her lamp--to go to the shore. He had not far to go to reach
it--had but to cross the threshold, and take a few steps through the
_close_, and he was on the road that ran along the sea-front of the
village. On the one side were the cottages, scattered and huddled--on
the other, the shore and ocean, wide outstretched. He would walk
straight across the road until he felt the sand under his feet; there
stand for a few moments facing the sea, and, with nostrils distended,
breathing deep breaths of the air from the north-east, then turn and
walk back to Meg Partan's kitchen and resume his ministration of light.
These his sallies were so frequent, and his absences so short, that a
more serene temper than hers might have been fretted by them. But there
was something about his look and behavior that, while it perplexed,
restrained her, and instead of breaking out upon him she eyed him
curiously. She had found that it would not do to stare at him. The
moment she began to do so he began to fidget, and turned his back to
her. It had made her lose her temper for a moment, and declare aloud as
her conviction that he was after all an impostor, and saw as well as any
of them.

"She has told you so, Mistress Partan, one hundred thousand times,"
replied Duncan with an odd smile; "and perhaps she will pe see a little
petter as any of you, no matter."

Thereupon she murmured to herself, "The cratur' 'ill be seein'
something!" and with mingled awe and curiosity sought to lay some
restraint upon her unwelcome observation of him.

Thus it went on the whole day, and as the evening approached he grew
still more excited. The sun went down and the twilight began, and as the
twilight deepened still his excitement grew. Straightway it seemed as if
the whole Seaton had come to share in it. Men and women were all out of
doors; and, late as it was when the sun set, to judge by the number of
bare legs and feet that trotted in and out with a little red flash, with
a dull patter-pat on earthen floor and hard road, and a scratching and
hustling among the pebbles, there could not have been one older than a
baby in bed; while of the babies even not a few were awake in their
mothers' arms, and out with them on the sea-front, where the men, with
their hands in their trouser-pockets, were lazily smoking pigtail in
short clay pipes with tin covers fastened to the stems by little chains,
and some of the women, in short blue petticoats and worsted stockings,
were doing the same. Some stood in their doors, talking with neighbors
standing in their doors, but these were mostly the elder women: the
younger ones--all but Lizzy Findlay--were out in the road. One man half
leaned, half sat on the window-sill of Duncan's former abode, and round
him were two or three more, and some women, talking about Scaurnose, and
the factor, and what the lads there would do to-morrow; while the hush
of the sea on the pebbles mingled with their talk like an unknown tongue
of the Infinite--never articulating, only suggesting--uttering in song
and not in speech--dealing not with thoughts, but with feelings and
foretastes. No one listened: what to them was the Infinite, with
Scaurnose in the near distance? It was now almost as dark as it would be
throughout the night if it kept clear.

Once more there was Duncan, standing as if looking out to sea, and
shading his brows with his hand as if to protect his eyes from the glare
of the sun and enable his sight.

"There's the auld piper again!" said one of the group, a young woman.
"He's unco fule-like to be stan'in' that gait (_way_), makin' as gien he
cudna weel see for the sun in 's een."

"Haud ye yer tongue, lass," rejoined an elderly woman beside her.
"There's mair things nor ye ken, as the Beuk says. There's een 'at can
see an' een 'at canna, an' een 'at can see twise ower, an' een 'at can
see steikit what nane can see open."

"Ta poat! ta poat of my chief!" cried the seer. "She is coming like a
tream of ta night, put one tat will not tepart with ta morning!" He
spoke as one suppressing a wild joy.

"Wha'll that be, lucky-deddy?" inquired in a respectful voice the woman
who had last spoken, while all within hearing hushed each other and
stood in silence. And all the time the ghost of the day was creeping
round from west to east, to put on its resurrection body and rise new
born. It gleamed faint like a cold ashy fire in the north.

"And who will it pe than her own son, Mistress Reekie?" answered the
piper, calling her by her husband's nickname, as was usual, but, as was
his sole wont, prefixing the title of respect where custom would have
employed but her Christian name. "Who'll should it pe put her own
Malcolm?" he went on. "I see his poat come round ta Tead Head. She flits
over the water like a pale ghost over Morven. But it's ta young and ta
strong she is pringing home to Tuncan.--O m'anam, beannuich!"

Involuntarily, all eyes turned toward the point called the Death's Head,
which bounded the bay on the east.

"It's ower dark to see onything," said the man on the window-sill.
"There's a bit haar (_fog_) come up."

"Yes," said Duncan, "it'll pe too tark for you who haf cot no eyes only
to speak of. Put you'll wait a few, and you'll pe seeing as well as
herself.--Och, her poy! her poy! O m'anam! Ta Lort pe praised! and
she'll tie in peace, for he'll pe only ta one-half of him a Cam'ell, and
he'll pe safed at last, as sure as there's a heafen to co to and a hell
to co from. For ta half tat's not a Cam'ell must be ta strong half, and
it will trag ta other half into heafen--where it will not pe ta welcome
howefer."

As if to get rid of the unpleasant thought that his Malcolm could not
enter heaven without taking half a Campbell with him, he turned from the
sea and hurried into the house, but only to catch up his pipes and
hasten out again, filling the bag as he went. Arrived once more on the
verge of the sand, he stood again facing the north-east, and began to
blow a pibroch loud and clear.

Meantime, the Partan had joined the same group, and they were talking in
a low tone about the piper's claim to the second-sight--for although all
were more or less inclined to put faith in Duncan, there was here no
such unquestioning belief in the marvel as would have been found on the
west coast in every glen from the Mull of Cantyre to Loch Eribol--when
suddenly Meg Partan, almost the only one hitherto remaining in the
house, appeared rushing from the close. "Hech, sirs!" she cried,
addressing the Seaton in general, "gien the auld man be in the richt--"

"She'll pe aal in ta right, Mistress Partan, and tat you'll pe seeing,"
said Duncan, who, hearing her first cry, had stopped his drone and
played softly, listening.

But Meg went on without heeding him any more than was implied in the
repetition of her exordium: "Gien the auld man be i' the richt, it 'll
be the marchioness hersel', 'at's h'ard o' the ill-duin's o' her factor,
an' 's comin' to see efter her fowk. An' it 'll be Ma'colm's duin'; an'
that 'll be seen. But the bonny laad winna ken the state o' the herbor,
an' he'll be makin' for the moo' o' 't, an' he'll jist rin 's bonny
boatie agrun' 'atween the twa piers; an' that 'll no be a richt
hame-comin' for the leddy o' the lan'; an' what's mair, Ma'colm 'ill get
the wyte (_blame_) o' 't; an' that 'll be seen. Sae ye maun, some o' ye,
to the pier-heid, an' luik oot to gie them warnin'."

Her own husband was the first to start, proud of the foresight of his
wife. "Haith, Meg!" he cried, "ye're maist as guid at the lang sicht as
the piper himsel'!"

Several followed him, and as they ran Meg cried after them, giving her
orders as if she had been vice-admiral of the red, in a voice shrill
enough to pierce the worst gale that ever blew on northern shore, "Ye'll
jist tell the bonnie laad to haud wast a bit an' rin her ashore, an'
we'll a' be there, an' hae her as dry's Noah's ark in a jiffie. Tell her
leddyship we'll cairry the boat an' her intil't to the tap o' the Boar's
Tail gien she'll gie's her orders.--Winna we, laads?"

"We can but try," said one. "But the Fisky 'ill be waur to get a grip o'
nor Nancy here," he added, turning suddenly upon the plumpest girl in
the place, who stood next him. But she foiled him of the kiss he had
thought to snatch, and turned the laugh from herself upon him, so
cleverly avoiding his clutch that he staggered into the road and nearly
fell upon his nose.

By the time the Partan and his companions reached the pier-head
something was dawning in the vague of sea and sky that might be a sloop,
and standing for the harbor. Thereupon the Partan and Jamie Ladle jumped
into a small boat and pulled out. Dubs, who had come from Scaurnose on
the business of the conjuration, had stepped into the stern, not to
steer, but to show a white ensign--somebody's Sunday shirt he had
gathered as they ran from a furze-bush, where it hung to dry, between
the Seaton and the harbor.

"Hoots! ye'll affront the marchioness," objected the Partan.

"Man, i' the gloamin' she'll no ken't frae buntin'," said Dubs, and at
once displayed it, holding it by the two sleeves. The wind had now
fallen to the softest breath, and the little vessel came on slowly. The
men rowed hard, shouting and waving their flag, and soon heard a hail
which none of them could mistake for other than Malcolm's. In a few
minutes they were on board, greeting their old friend with jubilation,
but talking in a subdued tone, for they knew by Malcolm's that the
cutter bore their lady. Briefly the Partan communicated the state of the
harbor, and recommended porting his helm and running the Fisky ashore
about opposite the brass swivel. "A' the men an' women i' the Seaton,"
he said, "'ill be there to haul her up."

Malcolm took the helm, gave his orders and steered farther westward.

By this time the people on shore had caught sight of the cutter. They
saw her come stealing out of the thin dark like a thought half thought,
and go gliding along the shore like a sea-ghost over the dusky water,
faint, uncertain, noiseless, glimmering. It could be no other than the
Fisky! Both their lady and their friend Malcolm must be on board, they
were certain, for how could the one of them come without the other? and
doubtless the marchioness--whom they all remembered as a good-humored,
handsome girl, ready to speak to any and everybody--would immediately
deliver them from the hateful red-nosed ogre, her factor. Out at once
they all set along the shore to greet her arrival, each running
regardless of the rest, so that from the Seaton to the middle of the
Boar's Tail there was a long, straggling, broken string of hurrying
fisher-folk, men and women, old and young, followed by all the current
children, tapering to one or two toddlers, who felt themselves neglected
and wept their way along. The piper, too asthmatic to run, but not too
asthmatic to walk and play his bagpipes, delighting the heart of
Malcolm, who could not mistake the style, believed he brought up the
rear, but was mistaken; for the very last came Mrs. Findlay and Lizzy,
carrying between them their little deal kitchen-table for her ladyship
to step out of the boat upon, and Lizzy's child fast asleep on the top
of it.

The foremost ran and ran until they saw that the Fisky had chosen her
lair, and was turning her bows to the shore, when they stopped and
stood ready with greased planks and ropes to draw her up. In a few
minutes the whole population was gathered, darkening, in the June
midnight, the yellow sands between the tide and the dune. The Psyche was
well manned now with a crew of six. On she came under full sail till
within a few yards of the beach, when in one and the same moment every
sheet was let go, and she swept softly up like a summer wave, and lay
still on the shore. The butterfly was asleep. But ere she came to rest,
the instant indeed that her canvas went fluttering away, thirty strong
men had rushed into the water and laid hold of the now wingless Psyche.
In a few minutes she was high and dry.

Malcolm leaped on the sand just as the Partaness came bustling up with
her kitchen-table between her two hands like a tray. She set it down,
and across it shook hands with him violently: then caught it up again,
and deposited it firm on its four legs beneath the cutter's waist. "Noo,
my leddy," said Meg, looking up at the marchioness, "set ye yer bit fut
upo' my table, an' we'll think the mair o' 't efter whan we tak oor
denner aff o' 't."

Florimel thanked her, stepped lightly upon it, and sprang to the sand,
where she was received with words of welcome from many, and shouts which
rendered them inaudible from the rest. The men, their bonnets in their
hands, and the women curtseying, made a lane for her to pass through,
while the young fellows would gladly have begged leave to carry her
could they have extemporized any suitable sort of palanquin or triumphal
litter.

Followed by Malcolm, she led the way over the Boar's Tail--nor would
accept any help in climbing it--straight for the tunnel: Malcolm had
never laid aside the key his father had given him to the private doors
while he was yet a servant. They crossed by the embrasure of the brass
swivel. That implement had now long been silent, but they had not gone
many paces from the bottom of the dune when it went off with a roar. The
shouts of the people drowned the startled cry with which Florimel
turned to Malcolm, involuntarily mindful of old and for her better
times. She had not looked for such a reception, and was both flattered
and touched by it. For a brief space the spirit of her girlhood came
back. Possibly, had she then understood that hope rather than faith or
love was at the heart of their enthusiasm, that her tenants looked upon
her as their savior from the factor, and sorely needed the exercise of
her sovereignty, she might have better understood her position and her
duty toward them.

Malcolm unlocked the door of the tunnel, and she entered, followed by
Rose, who felt as if she were walking in a dream. But as he stepped in
after them he was seized from behind and clasped close in an embrace he
knew at once. "Daddy, daddy!" he said, and turning threw his arms round
the piper.

"My poy! my poy! her nain son Malcolm!" said the old man in a whisper of
intense satisfaction and suppression. "You'll must pe forgifing her for
coming pack to you. She cannot help lofing you, and you must forget tat
you are a Cam'ell."

Malcolm kissed his cheek, and said, also in a whisper, "My ain daddy! I
hae a heap to tell ye, but I maun see my leddy hame first."

"Co, co, this moment co!" cried the old man, pushing him away. "To your
tuties to my leddyship first, and then come to her old daddy."

"I'll be wi' ye in half an hoor or less."

"Coot poy! coot poy! Come to Mistress Partan's."

"Ay, ay, daddy!" said Malcolm, and hurried through the tunnel.

As Florimel approached the ancient dwelling of her race, now her own to
do with as she would, her pleasure grew. Whether it was the twilight or
the breach in dulling custom, everything looked strange, the grounds
wider, the trees larger, the house grander and more anciently venerable.
And all the way the burn sang in the hollow. The spirit of her father
seemed to hover about the place, and while the thought that her
father's voice would not greet her when she entered the hall cast a
solemn funereal state over her simple return, her heart yet swelled with
satisfaction and far-derived pride. All this was hers to do with as she
would, to confer as she pleased! No thought of her tenants, fishers or
farmers, who did their strong part in supporting the ancient dignity of
her house, had even an associated share in the bliss of the moment. She
had forgotten her reception already, or regarded it only as the natural
homage to such a position and power as hers. As to owing anything in
return, the idea had indeed been presented to her when with Clementina
and Malcolm she talked over _St. Ronan's Well_, but it had never entered
her mind.

The drawing-room and the hall were lighted. Mrs. Courthope was at the
door, as if she expected her, and Florimel was careful to take
everything as a matter of course.

"When will your ladyship please to want me?" asked Malcolm.

"At the usual hour, Malcolm," she answered.

He turned and ran to the Seaton.

His first business was the accommodation of Travers and Davy, but he
found them already housed at the Salmon, with Jamie Ladle teaching
Travers to drink toddy. They had left the Psyche snug: she was high
above high-water mark, and there were no tramps about: they had furled
her sails, locked the companion-door and left her.

Mrs. Findlay rejoiced over Malcolm as if he had been her own son from a
far country, but the poor piper, between politeness and gratitude on the
one hand and the urging of his heart on the other, was sorely tried by
her loquacity: he could hardly get in a word. Malcolm perceived his
suffering, and as soon as seemed prudent proposed that he should walk
with him to Miss Horn's, where he was going to sleep, he said, that
night. Mrs. Partan snuffed, but held her peace. For the third or fourth
time that day, wonderful to tell, she restrained herself!

As soon as they were out of the house Malcolm assured Duncan, to the
old man's great satisfaction, that, had he not found him there, he would
within another month have set out to roam Scotland in search of him.

Miss Horn had heard of their arrival, and was wandering about the house,
unable even to sit down until she saw the marquis. To herself she always
called him the marquis: to his face he was always Ma'colm. If he had not
come she declared she could not have gone to bed; yet she received him
with an edge to her welcome: he had to answer for his behavior. They sat
down, and Duncan told a long sad story; which finished, with the toddy
that had sustained him during the telling, the old man thought it
better, for fear of annoying his Mistress Partan, to go home. As it was
past one o'clock, they both agreed.

"And if she'll tie to-night, my poy," said Duncan, "she'll pe lie awake
in her crave all ta long tarkness to pe waiting to hear ta voice of your
worrts in ta morning. And nefer you mind, Malcolm, she'll has learned to
forgive you for peing only ta one-half of yourself a cursed Cam'ell."

Miss Horn gave Malcolm a wink, as much as to say, "Let the old man talk:
it will hurt no Campbell;" and showed him out with much attention.

And then at last Malcolm poured out his whole story, and his heart with
it, to Miss Horn, who heard and received it with understanding, and a
sympathy which grew ever as she listened. At length she declared herself
perfectly satisfied, for not only had he done his best, but she did not
see what else he could have done. She hoped, however, that now he would
contrive to get this part over as quickly as possible, for which in the
morning she would show him cogent reasons.

"I hae no feelin's mysel', as ye weel ken, Ma'colm," she remarked in
conclusion, "an' I doobt, gien I had been i' your place, I wad na hae
luikit ta a' sides o' the thing at ance, as ye hae dune. An' it was a
man like you 'at sae near lost yer life for the hizzy!" she exclaimed.
"I maunna think aboot it, or I winna sleep a wink. But we maun get that
deevil Catanach (an' cat eneuch!) hangt.--Weel, my man, ye may haud up
yer heid afore the father o' ye, for ye're the first o' the race, I'm
thinkin', 'at ever was near han' deein' for anither. But mak ye a speedy
en' till 't noo, laad, an' fa' to the lave o' yer wark. There's a
terrible heap to be dune. But I maun haud my tongue the nicht, for I wad
fain ye had a guid sleep; an' I'm needin' ane sair mysel', for I'm no
sae yoong as I ance was; an' I hae been that anxious aboot ye, Ma'colm,
'at though I never hed ony feelin's, yet, noo 'at it's a' gaein' richt,
an' ye're a' richt, an' like to be richt for evermair, my heid's jist
like to split. Gang yer wa's to yer bed, and soon' may ye sleep! It's
the bed yer bonny mither got a soon' sleep in at last, an' muckle was
she i' need o' 't! An' jist tak tent the morn what ye say whan Jean's i'
the room, or maybe o' the ither side o' the door, for she's no mowse. I
dinna ken what gars me keep the jaud. I believe 'at gien the verra
deevil himsel' had been wi' me sae lang, I wadna hae the hert to turn
him aboot his ill business. That's what comes o' haein' no feelin's.
Ither fowk wad hae gotten rid o' her half a score o' years sin' syne."


CHAPTER LVIII.

THE TRENCH.

Malcolm had not yet, after all the health-giving of the voyage, entirely
recovered the effects of the ill-compounded potion. Indeed, sometimes
the fear crossed his mind that never would he be the same man
again--that the slow furnace of the grave alone would destroy the vile
deposit left in his house of life. Hence it came that he was weary, and
overslept himself the next morning; but it was no great matter: he had
yet time enough. He swallowed his breakfast as a working man alone can,
and set out for Duff Harbor. At Leith, where they had put in for
provisions, he had posted a letter to Mr. Soutar, directing him to have
Kelpie brought on to his own town, whence he would fetch her himself.
The distance was about ten miles, the hour eight, and he was a good
enough walker, although boats and horses had combined to prevent him, he
confessed, from getting over-fond of Shank's mare. To men who delight in
the motions of a horse under them the legs of a man are a tame, dull
means of progression, although they too have their superiorities; and
one of the disciplines of this world is to get out of the saddle and
walk afoot. He who can do so with perfect serenity must very nearly have
learned with Saint Paul in whatsoever state he is, therein to be
content. It was the loveliest of mornings, however, to be abroad in upon
any terms, and Malcolm hardly needed the resources of one who knew both
how to be abased and how to abound--enviable perfection!--for the
enjoyment of even a long walk. Heaven and earth were just settling to
the work of the day after their morning prayer, and the whole face of
things yet wore something of that look of expectation which one who
mingles the vision of the poet with the faith of the Christian may well
imagine to be their upward look of hope after a night of groaning and
travailing--the earnest gaze of the creature waiting for the
manifestation of the sons of God; and for himself, though the hardest
thing was yet to come, there was a satisfaction in finding himself
almost up to his last fence, with the heavy ploughed land through which
he had been floundering nearly all behind him; which figure means that
he had almost made up his mind what to do.

When he reached the Duff Arms he walked straight into the yard, where
the first thing he saw was a stable-boy in the air, hanging on to a
twitch on the nose of the rearing Kelpie. In another instant he would
have been killed or maimed for life, and Kelpie loose and scouring the
streets of Duff Harbor. When she heard Malcolm's voice and the sound of
his running feet she dropped as if to listen. He flung the boy aside and
caught her halter. Once or twice more she reared in the vain hope of so
ridding herself of the pain that clung to her lip and nose, nor did she,
through the mist of her anger and suffering, quite recognize her master
in his yacht-uniform. But the torture decreasing, she grew able to scent
his presence, welcomed him with her usual glad whinny, and allowed him
to to do with her as he would.

Having fed her, found Mr. Soutar and arranged several matters with him,
he set out for home.

That was a ride! Kelpie was mad with life. Every available field he
jumped her into, and she tore its element of space at least to shreds
with her spurning hoofs. But the distance was not great enough to quiet
her before they got to hard turnpike and young plantations. He would
have entered at the grand gate, but found no one at the lodge, for the
factor, to save a little, had dismissed the old keeper. He had therefore
to go on, and through the town, where, to the awe-stricken eyes of the
population peeping from doors and windows, it seemed as if the terrible
horse would carry him right over the roofs of the fisher-cottages below
and out to sea. "Eh, but he's a terrible cratur, that Ma'colm MacPhail!"
said the old wives to each other, and felt there must be something
wicked in him to ride like that.

But he turned her aside from the steep hill, and passed along the street
that led to the town-gate of the House. Whom should he see, as he turned
into it, but Mrs. Catanach, standing on her own doorstep, opposite the
descent to the Seaton, shading her eyes with her hand, and looking far
out over the water through the green smoke of the village below! It had
been her wont to gaze thus since ever he could remember her, though what
she could at such times be looking for, except it were the devil in
person, he found it hard to conjecture. At the sound of his approach she
turned; and such an expression crossed her face in a momentary flash ere
she disappeared in the house as added considerably to his knowledge of
fallen humanity. Before he reached her door she was out again, tying on
a clean white apron as she came, and smiling like a dark pool in
sunshine. She dropped a low curtsey, and looked as if she had been
occupying her house for months of his absence. But Malcolm would not
meet even cunning with its own weapons, and therefore turned away his
head and took no notice of her. She ground her teeth with the fury of
hate, and swore that she would yet disappoint him of his purpose,
whatever it were, in this masquerade of service. Her heart being
scarcely of the calibre to comprehend one like Malcolm's, her theories
for the interpretation of the mystery were somewhat wild and altogether
of a character unfit to see the light.

The keeper of the town-gate greeted Malcolm, as he let him in, with a
pleased old face and words of welcome, but added instantly, as if it was
no time for the indulgence of friendship, that it was a terrible
business going on at the Nose.

"What is it?" asked Malcolm in alarm.

"Ye hae been ower lang awa', I doobt," answered the man, "to ken hoo the
factor--But, Lord save ye! haud yer tongue," he interjected, looking
fearfully around him. "Gien he kenned 'at I said sic a thing, he wad
turn me oot o' hoose an' ha'."

"You've said nothing yet," returned Malcolm.

"I said _factor_, an' that same's 'maist eneuch, for he's like a roarin'
lion an' a ragin' bear amang the people; an' that sin' ever ye gaed. Bow
o' Meal said i' the meetin' the ither nicht 'at he bude to be the verra
man, the wickit ruler propheseed o' sae lang sin' syne i' the beuk o'
the Proverbs. Eh! it's an awfu' thing to be foreordeent to
oonrichteousness!"

"But you haven't told me what is the matter at Scaurnose," said Malcolm
impatiently.

"Ow, it's jist this--'at this same's Midsimmer Day, an' Blue
Peter--honest fallow!--he's been for the last three month un'er nottice
frae the factor to quit. An' sae, ye see--"

"To quit!" exclaimed Malcolm. "Sic a thing was never h'ard tell o'."

"Haith! it's h'ard tell o' noo," returned the gate-keeper. "Quittin' 's
as plenty as quicken (_couch-grass_). 'Deed, there's maist naething
ither h'ard tell o' _bit_ quittin', for the full half o' Scaurnose is
un'er like nottice for Michaelmas, an' the Lord kens what it 'll a' en'
in!"

"But what's it for? Blue Peter's no the man to misbehave himsel'."

"Weel, ye ken mair yersel' nor ony ither as to the warst fau't there is
to lay till 's chairge; for they say--that is, _some_ say--it's a' yer
ain wyte, Ma'colm."

"What mean ye, man? Speyk oot," said Malcolm.

"They say it's a' anent the abduckin' o' the markis's boat, 'at you an'
him gaed aff wi' thegither."

"That'll hardly haud, seein' the marchioness hersel' cam' hame in her
the last nicht."

"Ay, but ye see the decree's gane oot, and what the factor says is like
the laws o' the Medes an' Persians, 'at they say's no to be altert: I
kenna mysel'."

"Ow weel, gien that be a', I'll see efter that wi' the marchioness."

"Ay, but ye see there's a lot o' the laads there, as I'm tellt, 'at has
vooed 'at factor nor factor's man sall never set fut in Scaurnose frae
this day furth. Gang ye doon to the Seaton, an' see hoo mony o' yer auld
freen's ye'll fin' there. Man, there a' oot to Scaurnose to see the
plisky. The factor he's there, I ken--and some constables wi' 'im--to
see 'at his order's cairried oot. An' the laads they hae been
fortifeein' the place, as they ca' 't, for the last ook. They've howkit
a trenk, they tell me, 'at nane but a hunter on 's horse cud win ower,
an' they're postit alang the toon-side o' 't wi' sticks an' stanes an
boat-heuks, an' guns an' pistils. An' gien there bena a man or twa killt
a'ready--"

Before he finished his sentence Kelpie was leveling herself along the
road for the sea-gate.

Johnny Bykes was locking it on the other side, in haste to secure his
eye-share of what was going on, when he caught sight of Malcolm tearing
up. Mindful of the old grudge, also that there was no marquis now to
favor his foe, he finished the arrested act of turning the key, drew it
from the lock, and to Malcolm's orders, threats and appeals returned for
all answer that he had no time to attend to _him_, and so left him
looking through the bars. Malcolm dashed across the burn, and round the
base of the hill on which stood the little wind-god blowing his horn,
dismounted, unlocked the door in the wall, got Kelpie through, and was
in the saddle again before Johnny was halfway from the gate. When the
churl saw him he trembled, turned and ran for its shelter again in
terror, nor perceived until he reached it that the insulted groom had
gone off like the wind in the opposite direction.

Malcolm soon left the high-road and cut across the fields, over which
the wind bore cries and shouts, mingled with laughter and the animal
sounds of coarse jeering. When he came nigh the cart-road which led into
the village he saw at the entrance of the street a crowd, and rising
from it the well-known shape of the factor on his horse. Nearer the sea,
where was another entrance through the back yards of some cottages, was
a smaller crowd. Both were now pretty silent, for the attention of all
was fixed on Malcolm's approach. As he drew up Kelpie foaming and
prancing, and the group made way for her, he saw a deep wide ditch
across the road, on whose opposite side was ranged irregularly the
flower of Scaurnose's younger manhood, calmly, even merrily, prepared to
defend their entrenchment. They had been chaffing the factor, and loudly
challenging the constables to come on, when they recognized Malcolm in
the distance, and expectancy stayed the rush of their bruising wit. For
they regarded him as beyond a doubt come from the marchioness with
messages of good-will. When he rode up, therefore, they raised a great
shout, every one welcoming him by name. But the factor--who, to judge by
appearances, had had his forenoon dram ere he left home--burning with
wrath, moved his horse in between Malcolm and the ditch. He had
self-command enough left, however, to make one attempt at the loftily
superior. "Pray what is your business?" he said, as if he had never seen
Malcolm in his life before. "I presume you come with a message."

"I come to beg you, sir, not to go farther with this business. Surely
the punishment is already enough," said Malcolm respectfully.

"Who sends me the message?" asked the factor, his lips pressed together
and his eyes flaming.

"One," answered Malcolm, "who has some influence for justice, and will
use it upon whichever side the justice may lie."

"Go to hell!" cried the factor, losing utterly his slender self-command
and raising his whip.

Malcolm took no heed of the gesture, for he was at the moment beyond his
reach. "Mr. Crathie," he said calmly, "you are banishing the best man in
the place."

"No doubt! no doubt! seeing he's a crony of yours," laughed the factor
in mighty scorn.--"A canting, prayer-meeting rascal!" he added.

"Is that ony waur nor a drucken elyer o' the kirk?" cried Dubs from the
other side of the ditch, raising a roar of laughter.

The very purple left the factor's face and turned to a corpse-like gray
in the fire of his fury.

"Come, come, my men! that's going too far," said Malcolm.

"An' wha ir ye for a fudgie (_truant_) fisher, to gie coonsel ohn
speired?" shouted Dubs, altogether disappointed in the part Malcolm
seemed only able to take. "Haud to the factor there wi' yer coonsel!"

"Get out of my way!" said Mr. Crathie through his set teeth, and came
straight upon Malcolm. "Home with you, or-r-r-r--" And again he raised
his whip, this time plainly with intent.

"For God's sake, factor, min' the mere!" cried Malcolm. "Ribs an' legs
an' a' 'ill be to crack gien ye anger her wi' yer whuppin'!" As he spoke
he drew a little aside, that the factor might pass if he pleased. A
noise arose in the smaller crowd, and Malcolm turned to see what it
meant: off his guard, he received a stinging cut over the head from the
factor's whip. Simultaneously, Kelpie stood up on end, and Malcolm tore
the weapon from the treacherous hand. "If I gave you what you deserve,
Mr. Crathie, I should knock you and your horse together into that ditch.
A touch of the spur would do it. I am not quite sure that I ought not.
A nature like yours takes forbearance for fear." While he spoke, his
mare was ramping and kicking, making a clean sweep all about her. Mr.
Crathie's horse turned restive from sympathy, and it was all his rider
could do to keep his seat. As soon as he got Kelpie a little quieter,
Malcolm drew near and returned him his whip. He snatched it from his
outstretched hand and essayed a second cut at him, which Malcolm
rendered powerless by pushing Kelpie close up to him. Then suddenly
wheeling, he left him.

On the other side of the trench the fellows were shouting and roaring
with laughter.

"Men!" cried Malcolm, "you have no right to stop up this road. I want to
go and see Blue Peter."

"Come on, than!" cried one of the young men, emulous of Dubs's humor,
and spread out his arms as if to receive Kelpie to his bosom.

"Stand out of the way: I'm coming," said Malcolm. As he spoke he took
Kelpie a little round, keeping out of the way of the factor, who sat
trembling with rage on his still excited animal, and sent her at the
trench. The Deevil's Jock, as they called him, kept jumping, with his
arms outspread, from one place to another, as if to receive Kelpie's
charge; but when he saw her actually coming, in short, quick bounds,
straight to the trench, he was seized with terror, and, half paralyzed,
slipped as he turned to flee and rolled into the ditch, just in time to
see Kelpie fly over his head. His comrades scampered right and left, and
Malcolm, rather disgusted, took no notice of them.

A cart, loaded with their little all, the horse in the shafts, was
standing at Peter's door, but nobody was near it. Hardly had Malcolm
entered the close, however, when out rushed Annie, and heedless of
Kelpie's demonstrative repellence, reached up her hands like a child,
caught him by the arm while yet he was busied with his troublesome
charge, drew him down toward her and held him till, in spite of Kelpie,
she had kissed him again and again. "Eh, Ma'colm! eh, my lord!" she
said, "ye hae saved my faith. I kenned ye wad come."

"Haud yer tongue, Annie: I maunna be kenned," said Malcolm.

"There's nae danger. They'll tak it for sweirin'," said Annie, laughing
and crying both at once.

But next came Blue Peter, his youngest child in his arms.

"Eh, Peter, man! I'm bleythe to see ye," cried Malcolm. "Gie 's a grup
o' yer honest han'."

More than even the sight of his face, beaming with pleasure, more than
that grasp of the hand that would have squeezed the life out of a
polecat, was the sound of the mother-tongue from his lips. The cloud of
Peter's long distrust broke and vanished, and the sky of his soul was
straightway a celestial blue. He snatched his hand from Malcolm's,
walked back into the empty house, ran into the little closet off the
kitchen, bolted the door, fell on his knees in the void little sanctuary
that had of late been the scene of so many foiled attempts to lift up
his heart, and poured out speechless thanksgiving to the God of all
grace and consolation, who had given him back his friend, and that in
the time of his sore need. So true was his heart in its love that,
giving thanks for his friend, he forgot he was the marquis of Lossie,
before whom his enemy was but as a snail in the sun. When he rose from
his knees and went out again, his face shining and his eyes misty, his
wife was on the top of the cart, tying a rope across the cradle.

"Peter," said Malcolm, "ye was quite richt to gang, but I'm glaid they
didna lat ye."

"I wad hae been halfw'y to Port Gordon or noo," said Peter.

"But noo ye'll no gang to Port Gordon," said Malcolm. "Ye'll jist gang
to the Salmon for a feow days till we see hoo things'll gang."

"I'll du onything ye like, Ma'colm," said Peter, and went into the house
to fetch his bonnet.

In the street arose the cry of a woman, and into the close rushed one of
the fisher-wives, followed by the factor. He had found a place on the
eastern side of the village, whither he had slipped unobserved, where,
jumping a low earth-wall, he got into a little back yard. He was
trampling over its few stocks of kail and its one dusty miller and
double daisy when the woman to whose cottage it belonged caught sight of
him through her window, and running out fell to abusing him, doubtless
in no measured language. He rode at her in his rage, and she fled
shrieking into Peter's close and behind the cart, never ceasing her
vituperation, but calling him every choice name in her vocabulary.
Beside himself with the rage of murdered dignity, he struck at her over
the corner of the cart. Thereupon from the top of it Annie Mair ventured
to expostulate: "Hoot, sir! It's no mainners to lat at a wuman like
that."

He turned upon her, and gave her a cut on the arm and hand so stinging
that she cried out, and nearly fell from the cart. Out rushed Peter and
flew at the factor, who from his seat of vantage began to ply his whip
about his head. But Malcolm, who, when the factor appeared, had moved
aside to keep Kelpie out of mischief, and saw only the second of the two
assaults, came forward with a scramble and a bound. "Haud awa', Peter!"
he cried: "this belangs to me. I gae 'im back 's whup, an' sae I'm
accoontable.--Mr. Crathie"--and as he spoke he edged his mare up to the
panting factor--"the man who strikes a woman must be taught that he is a
scoundrel, and that office I take. I would do the same if you were the
lord of Lossie instead of his factor."

Mr. Crathie, knowing himself now in the wrong, was a little frightened
at the set speech, and began to bluster and stammer, but the swift
descent of Malcolm's heavy riding-whip on his shoulders and back made
him voluble in curses. Then began a battle that could not last long with
such odds on the side of justice. It was gazed at from the mouth of the
close by many spectators, but none dared enter because of the capering
and plunging and kicking of the horses. In less than a minute the
factor turned to flee, and spurring out of the court galloped up the
street at full stretch.

"Haud oot o' the gait!" cried Malcolm, and rode after him. But more
careful of the people, he did not get a good start, and the factor was
over the trench and into the fields before he caught him up. Then again
the stinging switch buckled about the shoulders of the oppressor with
all the force of Malcolm's brawny arm. The factor yelled and cursed and
swore, and still Malcolm plied the whip, and still the horses flew over
fields and fences and ditches. At length in the last field, from which
they must turn into the high-road, the factor groaned out, "For God's
sake, Ma'colm, hae mercy!"

The youth's uplifted arm fell by his side. He turned his mare's head,
and when the factor ventured to turn his, he saw the avenger already
halfway back to Scaurnose, and the constables in full flight meeting
him.

While Malcolm was thus occupied his sister was writing to Lady Bellair.
She told her that, having gone out for a sail in her yacht, which she
had sent for from Scotland, the desire to see her home had overpowered
her to such a degree that of the intended sail she had made a voyage,
and here she was, longing just as much now to see Lady Bellair; and if
she thought proper to bring a gentleman with her to take care of her, he
also should be welcome for her sake. It was a long way for her to come,
she said, and Lady Bellair knew what sort of a place it was, but there
was nobody in London now, and if she had nothing more enticing on her
tablets, etc., etc. She ended with begging her, if she was inclined to
make her happy with her presence, to bring to her Caley and her hound
Demon. She had hardly finished when Malcolm presented himself. She
received him very coldly, and declined to listen to anything about the
fishers. She insisted that, being one of their party, he was prejudiced
in their favor, and that of course a man of Mr. Crathie's experience
must know better than he what ought to be done with such people in view
of protecting her rights and keeping them in order. She declared that
she was not going to disturb the old way of things to please him, and
said that he had now done her all the mischief he could, except indeed
he were to head the fishers and sack Lossie House. Malcolm found that
instead of gaining any advantage by making himself known to her as her
brother, he had but given her confidence in speaking her mind to him,
and set her free from considerations of personal dignity when she
desired to humiliate him. But he was a good deal surprised at the
ability with which she set forth and defended her own view of her
affairs, for she did not tell him that the Rev. Mr. Cairns had been with
her all the morning, flattering her vanity, worshiping her power and
generally instructing her in her own greatness--also putting in a word
or two anent his friend Mr. Crathie, and his troubles with her
ladyship's fisher-tenants. She was still, however, so far afraid of her
brother--which state of feeling was perhaps the main cause of her
insulting behavior to him--that she sat in some dread lest he might
chance to see the address of the letter she had been writing.

I may mention here that Lady Bellair accepted the invitation with
pleasure for herself and Liftore, promised to bring Caley, but utterly
declined to take charge of Demon or allow him to be of the party.
Thereupon, Florimel, who was fond of the animal, and feared much, as he
was no favorite, that something would _happen_ to him, wrote to
Clementina, praying her to visit her in her lovely loneliness--good as
The Gloom in its way, though not quite so dark--and to add a hair to the
weight of her obligation if she complied by allowing her deerhound to
accompany her. Clementina was the only one, she said, of her friends for
whom the animal had ever shown a preference.

Malcolm retired from his sister's presence much depressed, saw Mrs.
Courthope, who was kind as ever, and betook himself to his old room,
next to that in which his strange history began. There he sat down and
wrote urgently to Lenorme, stating that he had an important
communication to make, and begging him to start for the North the
moment he received the letter. A messenger from Duff Harbor well mounted
would ensure Malcolm's presence within a couple of hours.

He found the behavior of his old acquaintances and friends in the Seaton
much what he had expected: the few were as cordial as ever, while the
many still resented, with a mingling of the jealousy of affection, his
forsaking of the old life for one they regarded as unworthy of a bred at
least, if not born, fisherman. A few there were still who always had
been, for reasons known only to themselves, less than friendly. The
women were all cordial.

"Sic a mad-like thing," said old Futtocks, who was now the leader of the
assembly at the Barn, "to gang scoorin' the cuintry on that mad brute o'
a mere! What guid, think ye, can come o' sic-like?"

"H'ard ye 'im ever tell the story aboot Colonsay Castel yon'er?"

"Ay, hev I."

"Weel, isna his mere 'at they ca' Kelpie jest the pictur' o' the deil's
ain horse 'at lay at the door an' watched whan he flaw oot, an' tuik the
wa' wi' 'im?"

"I cudna say till I saw whether the deil himsel' cud gar her lie still."


CHAPTER LIX.

THE PEACEMAKER.

The heroes of Scaurnose expected a renewal of the attack, and in greater
force, the next day, and made their preparations accordingly,
strengthening every weak point around the village. They were put in
great heart by Malcolm's espousal of their cause, as they considered his
punishment of the factor; but most of them set it down in their wisdom
as resulting from the popular condemnation of his previous supineness.
It did not therefore add greatly to his influence with them. When he
would have prevailed upon them to allow Blue Peter to depart, arguing
that they had less right to prevent than the factor had to compel him,
they once more turned upon him: what right had he to dictate to them?
he did not belong to Scaurnose. He reasoned with them that the factor,
although he had not justice, had law on his side, and could turn out
whom he pleased. They said, "Let him try it!" He told them that they had
given great provocation, for he knew that the men they had assaulted
came surveying for a harbor, and that they ought at least to make some
apology for having maltreated them. It was all useless: that was the
women's doing, they said; besides, they did not believe him; and if what
he said was true, what was the thing to them, seeing they were all under
notice to leave? Malcolm said that perhaps an apology would be accepted.
They told him if he did not take himself off they would serve him as he
had served the factor. Finding expostulation a failure, therefore, he
begged Joseph and Annie to settle themselves again as comfortably as
they could, and left them.

Contrary to the expectation of all, however, and considerably to the
disappointment of the party of Dubs, Fite Folp and the rest, the next
day was as peaceful as if Scaurnose had been a halcyon nest floating on
the summer waves; and it was soon reported that in consequence of the
punishment he had received from Malcolm the factor was far too ill to be
troublesome to any but his wife. This was true, but, severe as his
chastisement was, it was not severe enough to have had any such
consequences but for his late growing habit of drinking whisky. As it
was, fever had followed upon the combination of bodily and mental
suffering. But already it had wrought this good in him, that he was far
more keenly aware of the brutality of the offence of which he had been
guilty than he would otherwise have been all his life through. To his
wife, who first learned the reason of Malcolm's treatment of him from
his delirious talk in the night, it did not, circumstances considered,
appear an enormity, and her indignation with the avenger of it, whom she
had all but hated before, was furious. Malcolm, on his part, was greatly
concerned to hear the result of his severity. He refrained, however,
from calling to inquire, knowing it would be interpreted as an insult,
not accepted as a sign of sympathy. He went to the doctor instead, who,
to his consternation, looked very serious at first. But when he learned
all about the affair, he changed his view considerably, and condescended
to give good hopes of his coming through, even adding that it would
lengthen his life by twenty years if it broke him of his habits of
whisky-drinking and rage.

And now Malcolm had a little time of leisure, which he put to the best
possible use in strengthening his relations with the fishers. For he had
nothing to do about the House except look after Kelpie; and Florimel, as
if determined to make him feel that he was less to her than before, much
as she used to enjoy seeing him sit his mare, never took him out with
her--always Stoat. He resolved therefore, seeing he must yet delay
action a while in the hope of the appearance of Lenorme, to go out as in
the old days after the herring, both for the sake of splicing, if
possible, what strands had been broken between him and the fishers, and
of renewing for himself the delights of elemental conflict. With these
views he hired himself to the Partan, whose boat's crew was
short-handed. And now, night after night, he reveled in the old
pleasure, enhanced by so many months of deprivation. Joy itself seemed
embodied in the wind blowing on him out of the misty infinite while his
boat rocked and swung on the waters, hanging between two worlds--that in
which the wind blew, and that other dark-swaying mystery whereinto the
nets to which it was tied went away down and down, gathering the harvest
of the ocean. It was as if Nature called up all her motherhood to greet
and embrace her long-absent son. When it came on to blow hard, as it did
once and again during those summer nights, instead of making him feel
small and weak in the midst of the storming forces, it gave him a
glorious sense of power and unconquerable life. And when his watch was
out, and the boat lay quiet, like a horse tethered and asleep in his
clover-field, he too would fall asleep with a sense of simultaneously
deepening and vanishing delight such as he had not at all in other
conditions experienced. Ever since the poison had got into his system,
and crept where it yet lay lurking in hidden corners and crannies, a
noise at night would on shore startle him awake, and set his heart
beating hard; but no loudest sea-noise ever woke him: the stronger the
wind flapped its wings around him, the deeper he slept. When a comrade
called him by name he was up at once and wide awake.

It answered also all his hopes in regard to his companions and the
fisher-folk generally. Those who had really known him found the same old
Malcolm, and those who had doubted him soon began to see that at least
he had lost nothing in courage or skill or good-will: ere long he was
even a greater favorite than before. On his part, he learned to
understand far better the nature of his people, as well as the
individual characters of them, for his long (but not too long) absence
and return enabled him to regard them with unaccustomed, and therefore
in some respects more discriminating, eyes.

Duncan's former dwelling happening to be then occupied by a lonely
woman, Malcolm made arrangements with her to take them both in; so that
in relation to his grandfather too something very much like the old life
returned for a time--with this difference, that Duncan soon began to
check himself as often as the name of his hate with its accompanying
curse rose to his lips.

The factor continued very ill. He had sunk into a low state, in which
his former indulgence was greatly against him. Every night the fever
returned, and at length his wife was worn out with watching and waiting
upon him.

And every morning Lizzy Findlay without fail called to inquire how Mr.
Crathie had spent the night. To the last, while quarreling with every
one of her neighbors with whom he had anything to do, he had continued
kind to her, and she was more grateful than one in other trouble than
hers could have understood. But she did not know that an element in the
origination of his kindness was the belief that it was by Malcolm she
had been wronged and forsaken.

Again and again she had offered, in the humblest manner, to ease his
wife's burden by sitting with him at night; and at last, finding she
could hold up no longer, Mrs. Crathie consented. But even after a week
she found herself still unable to resume the watching, and so, night
after night, resting at home during a part of the day, Lizzy sat by the
sleeping factor, and when he woke ministered to him like a daughter. Nor
did even her mother object, for sickness is a wondrous reconciler.
Little did the factor suspect, however, that it was partly for Malcolm's
sake she nursed him, anxious to shield the youth from any possible
consequences of his righteous vengeance.

While their persecutor lay thus, gradually everything at Scaurnose, and
consequently at the Seaton, lapsed into its old way, and the summer of
such content as before they had possessed returned to the fishers. I
fear it would have proved hard for some of them, had they made effort in
that direction, to join in the prayer--if prayer it may be called--put
up in church for him every Sunday. What a fearful canopy the prayers
that do not get beyond the atmosphere would make if they turned brown
with age! Having so lately seen the factor going about like a maniac,
raving at this piece of damage and that heap of dirt, the few fishers
present could never help smiling when Mr. Cairns prayed for
him as "the servant of God and his Church now lying grievously
afflicted--persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed."
Having found the fitting phrases, he seldom varied them.

Through her sorrow Lizzy had grown tender, as through her shame she had
grown wise. That the factor had been much in the wrong only rendered her
anxious sympathy the more eager to serve him. Knowing so well what it
was to have done wrong, she was pitiful over him, and her ministrations
were none the less devoted that she knew exactly how Malcolm thought and
felt about him; for the affair, having taken place in open village and
wide field and in the light of mid-day, and having been reported by
eye-witnesses many, was everywhere perfectly known, and Malcolm
therefore talked of it freely to his friends--among them both to Lizzy
and her mother.

Sickness sometimes works marvelous changes, and the most marvelous on
persons who to the ordinary observer seem the least liable to change.
Much apparent steadfastness of nature, however, is but sluggishness, and
comes from incapacity to generate change or contribute toward personal
growth; and it follows that those whose nature is such can as little
prevent or retard any change that has its initiative beyond them. The
men who impress the world as the mightiest are those often who _can_ the
least--never those who can the most in their natural kingdom; generally
those whose frontiers lie openest to the inroads of temptation, whose
atmosphere is most subject to moody changes and passionate convulsions,
who, while perhaps they can whisper laws to a hemisphere, can utter no
decree of smallest potency as to how things shall be within themselves.
Place Alexander ille Magnus beside Malcolm's friend Epictetus, ille
servorum servus--take his crutch from the slave and set the hero upon
his Bucephalus, but set them alone and in a desert--which will prove the
great man? which the unchangeable? The question being what the man
himself shall or shall not be, shall or shall not feel, shall or shall
not recognize as of himself and troubling the motions of his being,
Alexander will prove a mere earth-bubble, Epictetus a cavern in which
pulses the tide of the eternal and infinite Sea.

But then first, when the false strength of the self-imagined great man
is gone, when the want or the sickness has weakened the self-assertion
which is so often mistaken for strength of individuality, when the
occupations in which he formerly found a comfortable consciousness of
being have lost their interest, his ambitions their glow and his
consolations their color, when suffering has wasted away those upper
strata of his factitious consciousness, and laid bare the lower,
simpler, truer deeps, of which he has never known or has forgotten the
existence, then there is a hope of his commencing a new and real life.
Powers then, even powers within himself, of which he knew nothing, begin
to assert themselves, and the man commonly reported to possess a strong
will is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. This
factor, this man of business, this despiser of humbug, to whom the
scruples of a sensitive conscience were a contempt, would now lie awake
in the night and weep. "Ah!" I hear it answered, "but that was the
weakness caused by his illness." True; but what then had become of his
strength? And was it all weakness? What if this weakness was itself a
sign of returning life, not of advancing death--of the dawn of a new and
genuine strength? For he wept because in the visions of his troubled
brain he saw once more the cottage of his father the shepherd, with all
its store of lovely nothings round which the nimbus of sanctity had
gathered while he thought not of them; wept over the memory of that
moment of delight when his mother kissed him for parting with his willow
whistle to the sister who cried for it: he cried now in his turn, after
five-and-fifty years, for not yet had the little fact done with him, not
yet had the kiss of his mother lost its power on the man; wept over the
sale of the pet lamb, though he had himself sold thousands of lambs
since; wept over even that bush of dusty miller by the door, like the
one he trampled under his horse's feet in the little yard at Scaurnose
that horrible day. And oh that nest of wild bees with its combs of honey
unspeakable! He used to laugh and sing then: he laughed still
sometimes--he could hear how he laughed, and it sounded frightful--but
he never sang. Were the tears that honored such childish memories all of
weakness? Was it cause of regret that he had not been wicked enough to
have become impregnable to such foolish trifles? Unable to mount a
horse, unable to give an order, not caring even for his toddy, he was
left at the mercy of his fundamentals: his childhood came up and
claimed him, and he found the childish things he had put away better
than the manly things he had adopted. It is one thing for Saint Paul and
another for Mr. Worldly Wiseman to put away childish things. The ways
they do it, and the things they substitute, are both so different! And
now first to me, whose weakness it is to love life more than manners,
and men more than their portraits, the man begins to grow interesting.
Picture the dawn of innocence on a dull, whisky-drinking, commonplace
soul, stained by self-indulgence and distorted by injustice! Unspeakably
more interesting and lovely is to me such a dawn than the honeymoon of
the most passionate of lovers, except indeed I know them such lovers
that their love will out-last all the moons.

"I'm a poor creature, Lizzy," he said, turning his heavy face one
midnight toward the girl as she sat half dozing, ready to start awake.

"God comfort ye, sir!" said the girl.

"He'll take good care of that," returned the factor. "What did I ever do
to deserve it? There's that MacPhail, now--to think of _him_! Didn't I
do what man could for him? Didn't I keep him about the place when all
the rest were dismissed? Didn't I give him the key of the library, that
he might read and improve his mind? And look what comes of it!"

"Ye mean, sir," said Lizzy, quite innocently, "'at that's the w'y ye
ha'e dune wi' God, an' sae he winna heed ye?"

The factor had meant nothing in the least like it. He had merely been
talking as the imps of suggestion tossed up. His logic was as sick and
helpless as himself. So at that he held his peace, stung in his pride at
least--perhaps in his conscience too, only he was not prepared to be
rebuked by a girl like her, who had--Well, he must let it pass: how much
better was he himself?

But Lizzy was loyal: she could not hear him speak so of Malcolm and hold
her peace as if she agreed in his condemnation. "Ye'll ken Ma'colm
better some day, sir," she said.

"Well, Lizzy," returned the sick man, in a tone that but for feebleness
would have been indignant, "I have heard a good deal of the way women
_will_ stand up for men that have treated them cruelly, but you to stand
up for _him_ passes!"

"He's been the best friend I ever had," said Lizzy.

"Girl! how can you sit there, and tell me so to my face?" cried the
factor, his voice strengthened by the righteousness of the reproof it
bore. "If it were not the dead of the night--"

"I tell ye naething but the trowth, sir," said Lizzy as the contingent
threat died away. "But ye maun lie still or I maun gang for the
mistress. Gien ye be the waur the morn, it'll be a' my wyte, 'cause I
cudna bide to hear sic things said o' Ma'colm."

"Do ye mean to tell me," persisted her charge, heedless of her
expostulation, "that the fellow who brought you to disgrace, and left
you with a child you could ill provide for--and I well know never sent
you a penny all the time he was away, whatever he may have done now--is
the best friend you ever had?"

"Noo God forgie ye, Maister Crathie, for threipin' sic a thing!" cried
Lizzy, rising as if she would leave him. "Ma'colm MacPhail's as clear o'
ony sin like mine as my wee bairnie itsel'."

"Do ye daur tell _me_ he's no the father o' that same, lass?"

"_No_; nor never will be the father o' ony bairn whase mither's no his
wife!" said Lizzy, with burning cheeks but resolute voice.

The factor, who had risen on his elbow to look her in the face, fell
back in silence, and neither of them spoke for what seemed to the
watcher a long time. When she ventured to look at him, he was asleep.

He lay in one of those troubled slumbers into which weakness and
exhaustion will sometimes pass very suddenly; and in that slumber he had
a dream which he never forgot. He thought he had risen from his grave
with an awful sound in his ears, and knew he was wanted at the
judgment-seat. But he did not want to go, therefore crept into the porch
of the church and hoped to be forgotten. But suddenly an angel appeared
with a flaming sword, and drove him out of the churchyard away to
Scaurnose, where the Judge was sitting. And as he fled in terror before
the angel he fell, and the angel came and stood over him, and his sword
flashed torture into his bones, but he could not and dared not rise. At
last, summoning all his strength, he looked up at him and cried out,
"Sir, hae mercy, for God's sake!" Instantly all the flames drew back
into the sword, and the blade dropped, burning like a brand from the
hilt, which the angel threw away. And lo! it was Malcolm MacPhail, and
he was stooping to raise him. With that he awoke, and there was Lizzy
looking down on him anxiously. "What are you looking like that for?" he
asked crossly.

She did not like to tell him that she had been alarmed by his dropping
asleep, and in her confusion she fell back on the last subject. "There
maun be some mistak, Mr. Crathie," she said. "I wuss ye wad tell me what
gars ye hate Ma'colm MacPhail as ye du."

The factor, although he seemed to himself to know well enough, was yet a
little puzzled how to commence his reply; and therewith a process began
that presently turned into something with which never in his life before
had his inward parts been acquainted--a sort of self-examination, to
wit. He said to himself, partly in the desire to justify his present
dislike--he would not call it hate, as Lizzy did--that he used to get on
with the lad well enough, and had never taken offence at his freedoms,
making no doubt his manner came of his blood, and he could not help it,
being a chip of the old block; but when he ran away with the marquis's
boat, and went to the marchioness and told her lies against him, then
what could he do but--dislike him?

Arrived at this point, he opened his mouth and gave the substance of
what preceded it for answer to Lizzy's question. But she replied at
once: "Nobody 'ill gar me believe, sir, 'at Ma'colm MacPhail ever tellt
a lee again' you or onybody. I dinna believe he ever tellt a lee in 's
life. Jist ye exem' him weel anent it, sir. An' for the boat, nae doobt
it was makin' free to tak it; but ye ken, sir, 'at hoo he was maister
o' the same. It was in his chairge, an' ye ken little aboot boats
yersel' or the sailin' o' them, sir."

"But it was me that engaged him again after all the servants at the
House had been dismissed: he was _my_ servant."

"That maks the thing luik waur, nae doobt," allowed Lizzy, with
something of cunning. "Hoo was't at he cam to du 't ava' (_of all at
all_), sir? Can ye min'?" she pursued.

"I discharged him."

"An' what for, gien I may mak bold to speir, sir?" she went on.

"For insolence."

"Wad ye tell me hoo he answert ye? Dinna think me meddlin', sir: I'm
clear certain there's been some mistak. Ye cudna be sae guid to me an'
be ill to him, ohn some mistak."

It was consoling to the conscience of the factor, in regard of his
behavior to the two women, to hear his own praise for kindness from a
woman's lips. He took no offence, therefore, at her persistent
questioning, but told her as well and as truly as he could remember,
with no more than the all-but unavoidable exaggeration with which
feeling _will_ color fact, the whole passage between Malcolm and himself
concerning the sale of Kelpie, and closed with an appeal to the judgment
of his listener, in which he confidently anticipated her verdict: "A
most ridic'lous thing! ye can see yersel' as weel 's onybody, Lizzy. An'
sic a thing to ca' an honest man like mysel' a hypocreet for! ha! ha!
ha! There's no a bairn atween John o' Groat's an' the Lan's En' disna
ken 'at the seller o' a horse is b'un' to reese (_extol_) him, an' the
buyer to tak care o' himsel'. I'll no say it's jist allooable to tell a
doonricht lee, but ye may come full nearer till't in horse-dealin', ohn
sinned, nor in ony ither kin' o' merchandeze. It's like luve an' war, in
baith which, it's weel kenned, a' thing's fair. The saw sud rin--_Luve
an' war an' horse-dealin'._--Divna ye see, Lizzy?"

But Lizzy did not answer, and the factor, hearing a stifled sob, started
to his elbow.

"Lie still, sir!" said Lizzy. "It's naething. I was only jist thinkin'
'at that wad be the w'y 'at the father o' my bairn rizzoned wi' himsel'
whan he lee'd to me."

"Hey!" said the astonished factor, and in his turn held his peace,
trying to think.

Now, Lizzy for the last few months had been going to school--the same
school with Malcolm, open to all comers--the only school where one is
sure to be led in the direction of wisdom--and there she had been
learning to some purpose, as plainly appeared before she had done with
the factor.

"Whase Kirk are ye elder o', Maister Crathie?" she asked presently.

"Ow, the Kirk o' Scotlan', of coorse," answered the patient, in some
surprise at her ignorance.

"Ay, ay," returned Lizzy; "but whase aucht (_owning, property_) is 't?"

"Ow, whase but the Redeemer's?"

"An' div ye think, Mr. Crathie, 'at gien Jesus Christ had had a horse to
sell, he wad hae hidden frae him 'at wad buy ae hair o' a fau't 'at the
beast hed? Wad he no hae dune till's neiper as he wad hae his neiper du
to him?"

"Lassie! lassie! tak care hoo ye even _Him_ to sic-like as hiz (_us_).
What wad _He_ hae to du wi' horseflesh?"

Lizzy held her peace. Here was no room for argument. He had flung the
door of his conscience in the face of her who woke it. But it was too
late, for the word was in already. Oh that false reverence which men
substitute for adoring obedience, and wherewith they reprove the
childlike spirit that does not know another kingdom than that of God and
that of Mammon! God never gave man thing to do concerning which it were
irreverent to ponder how the Son of God would have done it.

But, I say, the word was in, and, partly no doubt from its following so
close upon the dream the factor had had, was potent in its operation. He
fell a-thinking, and a-thinking more honestly than he had thought for
many a day. And presently it was revealed to him that, if he were in the
horse-market wanting to buy, and a man there who had to sell said to
him, "He wadna du for you, sir: ye wad be tired o' 'im in a week," he
would never remark, "What a fool the fellow is!" but, "Weel, noo, I ca'
that neiborly!" He did not get quite so far just then as to see that
every man to whom he might want to sell a horse was as much his neighbor
as his own brother; nor, indeed, if he had got as far, would it have
indicated much progress in honesty, seeing he would at any time, when
needful and possible, have cheated that brother in the matter of a horse
as certainly as he would a Patagonian or Chinaman. But the warped glass
of a bad maxim had at least been cracked in his window.

The peacemaker sat in silence the rest of the night, but the factor's
sleep was broken, and at times he wandered. He was not so well the next
day, and his wife, gathering that Lizzy had been talking, and herself
feeling better, would not allow her to sit up with him any more.

Days and days passed, and still Malcolm had no word from Lenorme, and
was getting hopeless in respect to that quarter of possible aid. But so
long as Florimel could content herself with the quiet of Lossie House,
there was time to wait, he said to himself. She was not idle, and that
was promising. Every day she rode out with Stoat. Now and then she would
make a call in the neighborhood, and, apparently to trouble Malcolm,
took care to let him know that on one of these occasions her call had
been upon Mrs. Stewart. One thing he did feel was, that she made no
renewal of her friendship with his grandfather: she had, alas! outgrown
the girlish fancy. Poor Duncan took it much to heart. She saw more of
the minister and his wife--who both flattered her--than anybody else,
and was expecting the arrival of Lady Bellair and Lord Liftore with the
utmost impatience. They, for their part, were making the journey by the
easiest possible stages, tacking and veering, and visiting every one of
their friends that lay between London and Lossie: they thought to give
Florimel the little lesson that, though they accepted her invitation,
they had plenty of friends in the world besides her ladyship, and were
not dying to see her.

One evening, Malcolm, as he left the grounds of Mr. Morrison, on whom
he had been calling, saw a traveling-carriage pass toward Portlossie,
and something liker fear laid hold of his heart than he had ever felt
except when Florimel and he on the night of the storm took her father
for Lord Gernon the wizard. As soon as he reached certain available
fields, he sent Kelpie tearing across them, dodged through a fir wood,
and came out on the road half a mile in front of the carriage: as again
it passed him he saw that his fears were facts, for in it sat the
bold-faced countess and the mean-hearted lord. Something _must_ be done
at last, and until it was done good watch must be kept.

I must here note that during this time of hoping and waiting Malcolm had
attended to another matter of importance. Over every element influencing
his life, his family, his dependants, his property, he desired to
possess a lawful, honest command: where he had to render account he
would be head. Therefore, through Mr. Soutar's London agent, to whom he
sent up Davy, and whom he brought acquainted with Merton and his former
landlady at the curiosity-shop, he had discovered a good deal about Mrs.
Catanach from her London associates, among them the herb-doctor and his
little boy who had watched Davy; and he had now almost completed an
outline of evidence which, grounded on that of Rose, might be used
against Mrs. Catanach at any moment. He had also set inquiries on foot
in the track of Caley's antecedents, and had discovered more than the
acquaintance between her and Mrs. Catanach. Also he had arranged that
Hodges, the man who had lost his leg through his cruelty to Kelpie,
should leave for Duff Harbor as soon as possible after his discharge
from the hospital. He was determined to crush the evil powers which had
been ravaging his little world.


CHAPTER LX.

AN OFFERING.

Clementina was always ready to accord any reasonable request Florimel
could make of her; but her letter lifted such a weight from her heart
and life that she would now have done whatever she desired, reasonable
or unreasonable, provided only it was honest. She had no difficulty in
accepting Florimel's explanation that her sudden disappearance was but a
breaking of the social jail, the flight of the weary bird from its
foreign cage back to the country of its nest; and that same morning she
called upon Demon. The hound, feared and neglected, was rejoiced to see
her, came when she called him, and received her caresses: there was no
ground for dreading his company. It was a long journey, but if it had
been across a desert instead of through her own country, the hope that
lay at the end of it would have made it more than pleasant. She, as well
as Lady Bellair, had friends upon the way, but no desire either to
lengthen the journey or shorten its tedium by visiting them.

The letter would have found her at Wastbeach instead of London had not
the society and instructions of the schoolmaster detained her a willing
prisoner to its heat and glare and dust. Him only in all London must she
see to bid good-bye. To Camden Town therefore she went that same
evening, when his work would be over for the day. As usual now, she was
shown into his room--his only one. As usual also, she found him poring
over his Greek Testament. The gracious, graceful woman looked lovelily
strange in that mean chamber--like an opal in a brass ring. There was no
such contrast between the room and its occupant. His bodily presence was
too weak to "stick fiery off" from its surroundings, and to the eye that
saw through the bodily presence to the inherent grandeur, that grandeur
suggested no discrepancy, being of the kind that lifts everything to its
own level, casts the mantle of its own radiance around its surroundings.
Still, to the eye of love and reverence it was not pleasant to see him
in such _entourage_, and now that Clementina was going to leave him, the
ministering spirit that dwelt in the woman was troubled.

"Ah!" he said, and rose as she entered, "this is then the angel of my
deliverance!" But with such a smile he did not look as if he had much to
be delivered from. "You see," he went on, "old man as I am, and
peaceful, the summer will lay hold upon me. She stretches out a long arm
into this desert of houses and stones, and sets me longing after the
green fields and the living air--it seems dead here--and the face of
God, as much as one may behold of the Infinite through the revealing
veil of earth and sky and sea. Shall I confess my weakness, my poverty
of spirit, my covetousness after the visual? I was even getting a little
tired of that glorious God-and-man lover, Saul of Tarsus: no, not of
him, never of _him_, only of his shadow in his words. Yet perhaps--yes,
I think so--it is God alone of whom a man can never get tired. Well, no
matter: tired I was, when lo! here comes my pupil, with more of God in
her face than all the worlds and their skies He ever made."

"I would my heart were as full of Him too, then, sir," answered
Clementina. "But if I am anything of a comfort to you, I am more than
glad; therefore the more sorry to tell you that I am going to leave you,
though for a little while only, I trust."

"You do not take me by surprise, my lady. I have of course been looking
forward for some time to my loss and your gain. The world is full of
little deaths--deaths of all sorts and sizes, rather let me say. For
this one I was prepared. The good summer-land calls you to its bosom,
and you must go."

"Come with me," cried Clementina, her eyes eager with the light of the
sudden thought, while her heart reproached her grievously that only now
first had it come to her.

"A man must not leave the most irksome work for the most peaceful
pleasure," answered the schoolmaster. "I am able to live--yes, and do my
work--without you, my lady," he added with a smile, "though I shall miss
you sorely."

"But you do not know where I want you to come," she said.

"What difference can that make, my lady, except indeed in the amount of
pleasure to be refused, seeing this is not a matter of choice? I must be
with the children whom I have engaged to teach, and whose parents pay me
for my labor--not with those who, besides, can do well without me."

"I cannot, sir--not for long at least."

"What! not with Malcolm to supply my place?"

Clementina blushed, but only like a white rose. She did not turn her
head aside; she did not lower their lids to veil the light she felt
mount into her eyes; she looked him gently in the face as before, and
her aspect of entreaty did not change. "Ah! do not be unkind, master,"
she said.

"Unkind!" he repeated. "You know I am not. I have more kindness in my
heart than any lips can tell. You do not know, you could not yet
imagine, the half of what I hope of and for and from you."

"I _am_ going to see Malcolm," she said with a little sigh. "That is, I
am going to visit Lady Lossie at her place in Scotland--your own old
home, where so many must love you. _Can't_ you come? I shall be
traveling alone, quite alone, except my servants."

A shadow came over the schoolmaster's face: "You do not _think_, my
lady, or you would not press me. It pains me that you do not see at once
it would be dishonest to go without timely notice to my pupils, and to
the public too. But, beyond that quite, I never do anything of myself. I
go not where I wish, but where I seem to be called or sent. I never even
wish much, except when I pray to Him in whom are hid all the treasures
of wisdom and knowledge. After what He wants to give me I am wishing all
day long. I used to build many castles, not without a beauty of their
own--that was when I had less understanding--now I leave them to God to
build for me: He does it better, and they last longer. See now, this
very hour, when I needed help, could I have contrived a more lovely
annihilation of the monotony that threatened to invade my weary spirit
than this inroad of light in the person of my Lady Clementina? Nor will
He allow me to get overwearied with vain efforts. I do not think He will
keep me here long, for I find I cannot do much for these children. They
are but some of His many pagans--not yet quite ready to receive
Christianity, I think--not like children with some of the old seeds of
the truth buried in them, that want to be turned up nearer to the light.
This ministration I take to be more for my good than theirs--a little
trial of faith and patience for me--a stony corner of the lovely valley
of humiliation to cross. True, I _might_ be happier where I could hear
the larks, but I do not know that anywhere have I been more peaceful
than in this little room, on which I see you so often cast round your
eyes curiously, perhaps pitifully, my lady."

"It is not at all a fit place for _you_," said Clementina with a touch
of indignation.

"Softly, my lady, lest, without knowing it, your love should make you
sin. Who set thee, I pray, for a guardian angel over my welfare? I could
scarce have a lovelier, true; but where is thy brevet? No, my lady: it
is a greater than thou that sets me the bounds of my habitation. Perhaps
He may give me a palace one day. If I might choose, it would be things
that belong to a cottage--the whiteness and the greenness and the sweet
odors of cleanliness. But the Father has decreed for His children that
they shall know the thing that is neither their ideal nor His. Who can
imagine how in this respect things looked to our Lord when He came and
found so little faith on the earth? But perhaps, my lady, you would not
pity my present condition so much if you had seen the cottage in which I
was born, and where my father and mother loved each other, and died
happier than on their wedding-day. There I was happy too until their
loving ambition decreed that I should be a scholar and a clergyman. Not
before then did I ever know anything worthy the name of trouble. A
little cold and a little hunger at times, and not a little restlessness
always, was all. But then--ah, then my troubles began. Yet God, who
bringeth light out of darkness, hath brought good even out of my
weakness and presumption and half-unconscious falsehood. When do you
go?"

"To-morrow morning, as I purpose."

"Then God be with thee! He _is_ with thee, only my prayer is that thou
mayst know it. He is with me, and I know it. He does not find this
chamber too mean or dingy or unclean to let me know Him near me in it."

"Tell me one thing before I go," said Clementina: "are we not commanded
to bear each other's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ? I read
it to-day."

"Then why ask me?"

"For another question: does not that involve the command to those who
have burdens that they should allow others to bear them?"

"Surely, my lady. But _I_ have no burden to let you bear."

"Why should I have everything and you nothing? Answer me that."

"My lady, I have millions more than you, for I have been gathering the
crumbs under my Master's table for thirty years."

"You are a king," answered Clementina. "But a king needs a handmaiden
somewhere in his house: that let _me_ be in yours. No, I will be proud,
and assert my rights: I am your daughter. If I am not, why am I here? Do
you not remember telling me that the adoption of God meant a closer
relation than any other fatherhood, even His own first fatherhood, could
signify? You cannot cast me off if you would. Why should you be poor
when I am rich? You _are_ poor: you cannot deny it," she concluded with
a serious playfulness.

"I will not deny my privileges," said the schoolmaster, with a smile
such as might have acknowledged the possession of some exquisite and
envied rarity.

"I believe," insisted Clementina, "you are just as poor as the apostle
Paul when he sat down to make a tent, or as our Lord himself after he
gave up carpentering."

"You are wrong there, my lady. I am not so poor as they must often have
been."

"But I don't know how long I may be away, and you may fall ill,
or--or--see some--some book you want very much, or--"

"I never do," said the schoolmaster.

"What! never see a book you want to have?"

"No, not now. I have my Greek Testament, my Plato and my Shakespeare,
and one or two little books besides whose wisdom I have not yet quite
exhausted."

"I can't bear it!" cried Clementina, almost on the point of weeping.
"You will not let me near you. You put out an arm as long as the
summer's, and push me away from you. _Let_ me be your servant." As she
spoke she rose, and walking softly up to him where he sat, kneeled at
his knees and held out suppliantly a little bag of white silk tied with
crimson. "Take it--father," she said, hesitating, and bringing the word
out with an effort: "take your daughter's offering--a poor thing to show
her love, but something to ease her heart."

He took it, and weighed it up and down in his hand with an amused smile,
but his eyes full of tears. It was heavy. He opened it. A chair was
within his reach: he emptied it on the seat of it, and laughed with
merry delight as its contents came tumbling out. "I never saw so much
gold in my life if it were all taken together," he said. "What beautiful
stuff it is! But I don't want it, my dear. It would but trouble me." And
as he spoke he began to put it in the bag again. "You will want it for
your journey," he said.

"I have plenty in my reticule," she answered. "That is a mere nothing to
what I could have to-morrow morning for writing a cheque. I am afraid I
am very rich. It is such a shame! But I can't well help it. You must
teach me how to become poor. Tell me true: how much money have you?" She
said this with such an earnest look of simple love that the schoolmaster
made haste to rise that he might conceal his growing emotion.

"Rise, my dear lady," he said as he rose himself, "and I will show you."
He gave her his hand, and she obeyed, but troubled and disappointed, and
so stood looking after him while he went to a drawer. Thence, searching
in a corner of it, he brought a half-sovereign, a few shillings and some
coppers, and held them out to her on his hand with the smile of one who
has proved his point. "There!" he said, "do you think Paul would have
stopped preaching to make a tent so long as he had as much as that in
his pocket? I shall have more on Saturday, and I always carry a month's
rent in my good old watch, for which I never had much use, and now have
less than ever."

Clementina had been struggling with herself: now she burst into tears.

"Why, what a misspending of precious sorrow!" exclaimed the
schoolmaster. "Do you think because a man has not a gold-mine he must
die of hunger? I once heard of a sparrow that never had a worm left for
the morrow, and died a happy death notwithstanding." As he spoke he took
her handkerchief from her hand and dried her tears with it. But he had
enough ado to keep his own back. "Because I won't take a bagful of gold
from you when I don't want it," he went on, "do you think I should let
myself starve without coming to you? I promise you I will let you
know--come to you if I can--the moment I get too hungry to do my work
well and have no money left. Should I think it a disgrace to take money
from _you_? That would show a poverty of spirit such as I hope never to
fall into. My _sole_ reason for refusing now is that I do not need it."

But for all his loving words and assurances Clementina could not stay
her tears. She was not ready to weep, but now her eyes were as a
fountain.

"See, then, for your tears are hard to bear, my daughter," he said, "I
will take one of these golden ministers, and if it has flown from me ere
you come, seeing that, like the raven, it will not return if once I let
it go, I will ask you for another. It _may_ be God's will that you
should feed me for a time."

"Like one of Elijah's ravens," said Clementina, with an attempted laugh
that was really a sob.

"Like a dove whose wings are covered with silver and her feathers with
yellow gold," said the schoolmaster.

A moment of silence followed, broken only by Clementina's failures in
quieting herself.

"To me," he resumed, "the sweetest fountain of money is the hand of
love, but a man has no right to take it from that fountain except he is
in want of it. I am not. True, I go somewhat bare, my lady; but what is
that when my Lord would have it so?"

He opened again the bag, and slowly, reverentially indeed, drew from it
one of the new sovereigns with which it was filled. He put it in a
waistcoat pocket and laid the bag on the table.

"But your clothes are shabby, sir," said Clementina, looking at him with
a sad little shake of the head.

"Are they?" he returned, and looked down at his lower garments,
reddening and anxious. "I did not think they were more than a little
rubbed, but they shine somewhat," he said. "They are indeed polished by
use," he went on with a troubled little laugh: "but they have no holes
yet--at least none that are visible," he corrected. "If you tell me, my
lady, if you honestly tell me, that my garments"--and he looked at the
sleeve of his coat, drawing back his head from it to see it better--"are
unsightly, I will take of your money and buy me a new suit." Over his
coat-sleeve he regarded her, questioning.

"Everything about you is beautiful," she burst out. "You want nothing
but a body that lets the light through." She took the hand still raised
in his survey of his sleeve, pressed it to her lips, and walked, with
even more than her wonted state, slowly from the room.

He took the bag of gold from the table and followed her down the stair.
Her chariot was waiting her at the door. He handed her in, and laid the
bag on the little seat in front.

"Will you tell him to drive home?" she said with a firm voice, and a
smile which if any one care to understand let him read Spenser's
fortieth sonnet. And so they parted. The coachman took the queer,
shabby, un-London-like man for a fortune-teller his lady was in the
habit of consulting, and paid homage to his power with the handle of his
whip as he drove away. The schoolmaster returned to his room--not to his
Plato, not even to Saul of Tarsus, but to the Lord himself.

[TO BE CONTINUED]



SOME LAST WORDS FROM SAINTE-BEUVE.


It is seven years since the world of letters lost the prince of critics,
the last of the critics. His unfinished and unpublished manuscripts were
eagerly demanded and devoured; while obituaries, notices, reminiscences
and those analyses which the French term _appréciations_ rained in from
various quarters. The latest of these that deserves attention was an
outline of Saint-Beuve's life and literary career by the Vicomte
d'Haussonville, in which, with an affectation of impartiality and
fairness, every page was streaked with malice; imperfect justice was
done to Sainte-Beuve's intellect; his influence and reputation were
understated; and a picture was given of him as a man which could not but
be disagreeable and disappointing to the vast number who admired him as
a writer. In regard to the first two points, ill-nature and inaccuracy
can do no harm: Sainte-Beuve's fame and ability are perfectly well known
to the reading public of to-day, and the opinion of posterity will rest
upon his own merits rather than on the statements of any biographer, as
he is one of the authors whose writings are sure to be more read than
what other people write about them. The unpleasant personal impression
is not so easily dismissed: however exaggerated we may be disposed to
think it, the reflection occurs, "How this man was feared!" The
appearance of the notice several years after Sainte-Beuve's death
strengthens this conviction: M. d'Haussonville waited until his subject
should be quite cold before he ventured to touch him.

The causes of this dread and dislike are not to be found in
Sainte-Beuve's voluminous works, nor have I met with any evidence of it
in the writings of his literary contemporaries. He obviously held that
it is a critic's duty to be just before he is generous, and there may be
a lack of geniality in his praise, though it is not given grudgingly;
but I cannot recall an instance of literary spite in the large
proportion of his writings with which I am familiar. His judgments are
often severe, never harsh: he frequently dealt in satire, rarely, as far
as my memory serves, in sarcasm, and he condemns irony as one of the
least intelligent dispositions of the mind. The only case in which I
remember having suspected Sainte-Beuve of ill-nature was in a notice of
J. J. Ampère printed in the _Revue des Deux Mondes_ shortly after the
latter's death; but a person who had known Ampère long and well, and on
the friendliest terms, declared that it gave an entirely fair
description of the man, who, full of talent and amiability as he was,
had many weaknesses. Two pleas only can justify disinterring and
gibbeting an author's private life--either his having done the same by
others, or his having made the public the confidant of his individual
experience. Few writers have intruded their own personality upon their
readers less than Sainte-Beuve has done: the poems and novels of his
youth, which won fervent admiration from the literary leaders of that
day, De Vigny, Lamartine, Chateaubriand, are now forgotten: he is known
to readers of the last half century by a series of critical and
biographical essays extending from 1823 or 1824 to 1870, which combine
every attribute of perfect criticism except enthusiasm. The most
prominent feature of his method is the conscientiousness with which he
credits the person upon whom he passes judgment with every particle of
worth which can be extracted from his writings, acts or sayings: he
adopts as the basis of criticism the acknowledgment of whatever merit
may exist in the subject of consideration; and his talent and patience
for sifting the grain from the chaff are remarkable and admirable. An
author who has left some forty volumes conceived in this spirit should
have been safe against an effusion of spleen in his biographer. I am not
assailing the fidelity of M. d'Haussonville's portrait--of which I have
no means of judging--but the temper in which it is executed, which can
be judged without difficulty. Besides the injustice already mentioned,
it is disfigured by tittle-tattle, which tends to render the original
ridiculous and repulsive, but does not add one whit to our knowledge of
Sainte-Beuve as a man or an author.

A defence of Sainte-Beuve is not within the purpose of the present
article; but it was impossible for one who has known him favorably for
twenty years through his works and the testimony of his most
distinguished literary compeers to speak of him at all without
protesting against the detraction to which his memory has been
subjected. Two small posthumous volumes have lately been issued in
France,[C] revealing qualities which might expose the dead man to a mean
revenge, though to most readers they will have a delightful freshness
unspoiled by any bitter flavor. They consist of a series of notes on all
sorts of subjects, literary, dramatic, religious and political, one of
them being actually made up of the jottings in his later notebooks,
while the other contains the memoranda of a sort of high-class gossip
with which Sainte-Beuve supplied a friend, the editor of _La Revue
Suisse_, during the years 1843-45. These were not to be published as
they stood, but to be used by the editor, M. Juste Olivier, as he should
think best: they are fragmentary, mere bits of raw material--if any
product of that accomplished brain can be so termed--to be worked up by
another hand. They were qualified by marginal observations, such as
"This is for you alone," "This is rather strong," and they were to be
absolutely anonymous, the author allowing himself the luxury of free
speech, of writing exactly as he thought and felt; in short, of trusting
his indiscretion to M. Olivier's discretion. The latter used his
judgment independently; Sainte-Beuve's views and comments often became
merely one ingredient in an article for which others supplied the rest;
and the editor kneaded the whole into shape to his own liking. But the
MSS. remained intact, and were confided by M. Olivier to M. Jules
Troubat, Sainte-Beuve's private secretary and editor, who has published
them in their integrity, he tells us, with the exception of "a few
indispensable suppressions." The other volume, as we have said, is
composed of his notebooks. These last were intended to take the place of
memoirs by Sainte-Beuve himself, who wrote a short preface, under the
name of M. Troubat, destined for a larger volume to appear after his
death. He published, however, the greater part of those which he had
already collected in vol. ii. of the _Causeries de Lundi_: the present
series contains the notes which accumulated subsequently. M. Troubat has
given them to the world as they stood. Both books abound in the
characteristics of the author's style--good sense, moderation,
perception, discrimination, delicacy, sparkle, unerring taste, as well
as judgment in matters of intelligence. A parcel of disconnected
passages cannot possess the flow and finish of a complete essay, but
each bit has the clearness, incisiveness and smooth polish of his native
wit. They give us Sainte-Beuve's first impression, thought, mental
impulse, about daily events regarding which he sometimes afterward
modified his opinion. Not often, however, for he had, if not precisely
the prophetic vision which belongs to genius or minds illuminated by
enthusiasm or sympathy, that keen far-sightedness which recognizes at a
distance rather than foresees the coming event or man. He tells a
quantity of anecdotes, and he had exactly the sort of humor and absence
of tenderness for human weakness which perceives the point that makes a
story good in the greatest variety of speeches and situations. The key
to the dislike and fear with which some people must have regarded him
while living lies probably in just this appreciation. It is vain to
assert that humor is necessarily kindly, or the adjectives "grim" and
"savage" would not so often be tacked to it. Nobody could have hoped
that friendship would blind Sainte-Beuve to an absurdity: on the other
hand, even his enemies might count on his recognition if they had said a
good thing, and his not spoiling it in the repetition, as too many
friends do. This produced an impartiality in his verdicts which is the
moral essence of criticism, but perhaps the most trying quality to the
subject of it: he says himself that he had irritated and envenomed more
people by his praise than by his blame. He had not a high opinion of
human nature, which is curiously illustrated by his female portraits:
when there has been only a doubt of a woman's virtue, he never gives her
the benefit of the doubt; when there has not been even the suspicion of
a slip, he presumes that she kept her secrets better than most people
do. He was sensitive to the accusation of cynicism, and resented
extremely an article in _L'Union_ of June, 1855, in which he was set
down as having not only a skeptical mind, but a skeptical heart; which
was no doubt very nearly true. Yet he was on his guard against his
natural cynicism in his literary judgments at least, as one need but
glance over them to see. In the _Cahiers_ he cites an expression of his
fair friend Madame d'Arbonville: "How many good things there are besides
the things which we like! We ought to make room within ourselves for a
certain _opposite_;" and he adds that this should be the motto of a
liberal and intelligent critic. These convictions helped to make his
criticism as admirable, as invaluable, as it is; but the sharpness from
which his literary work is free makes his private observations on men
and things more entertaining. There are few people so well-natured as
not to enjoy the peculiar pungency which gives many of the passages in
the two volumes before us their relish: now and then it is as if we had
got hold of the cruets which were to season a whole article. There is a
batch of anecdotes about Lamartine, whose conspicuous gifts and position
put his puerile vanity in relief; and that vanity Sainte-Beuve never
spared. Lamartine set the fashion of his own idolatry by constituting
himself the high priest; adulation was not enough--he demanded
adoration; and he received it. He had a habit of contemplating himself
from an objective but highly-idealizing point of view, best expressed by
saying that he had a hero-worship for himself: his memoirs and other
autobiographical writings are full of it, and in his intercourse it
perpetually overflowed. "That is the brow they have tried to bend to the
dust!" he exclaimed, standing before his own likeness in Ary Scheffer's
studio. Lord Houghton, among his many good stories, had one of spending
an evening at Lamartine's in Paris with a circle of celebrities. Alfred
de Vigny, who had been out of town, presented himself. "Welcome back!"
said Lamartine magnificently. "You come from the provinces: do they
admire us down there?"--"They adore you," replied De Vigny with a bow.
The conversation was a prolonged paean to the host, with choral strophe
and antistrophe. One of the party began to rehearse the aspects in which
Lamartine was the greatest man in France--"As a poet, as an orator, as
an historian, as a statesman;" and as he paused, "And as a _soldier_,"
added Lamartine with a sublime gesture, "if ever France shall need him."
This may have been the country neighbor who, we learn from Sainte-Beuve,
pronounced Lamartine to be Fénelon without his didacticism, Rousseau
without his sophistry, Mirabeau without his incendiary notions. Still,
there were asides in the dialogue. One evening, the week before the
overthrow of the provisional government of which Lamartine was
president, he had a crowded reception, and, notwithstanding the failure
and imminent downfall of his administration, he was radiant with
satisfaction. "What can M. de Lamartine have to be so pleased about?"
said one of his friends to another. "He is pleased with himself," was
the reply.--"One of those speeches," observes Sainte-Beuve, "which only
friends find to make." But Lamartine was by no means solitary in this
infatuation. Sainte-Beuve remarks that "Nothing is so common in our
days: some think themselves God, some the Son of God, some archangels.
Pierre Leroux thinks himself the first, De Vigny the last: Lamartine is
a good prince--he is satisfied to be a seraph."

These books give us daily glimpses of Paris thirty years ago, of that
incessant mental movement, inquiry, desire for novelty and vivacity of
transient interest which dazzle the brain as the scintillation of the
sun upon the unstable waves does the eye. In all great cities, quite as
much as in villages, there is a topic which for the moment occupies
everybody, and which cannot be escaped, whether you enter a
drawing-room, pick up a newspaper or rush into the street: the chief
difference is, that in the great cities it changes oftener--"every
fortnight here," says Sainte-Beuve of Paris. The history of many a nine
days' wonder may be gathered from the _Chroniques_: we can mark the
first effect of occurrences startling at the time, some of which are now
wholly forgotten, while others have become historical; we witness the
appearance of new divinities who have since found their pedestals,
niches or obscure corners. Among these was Ponsard, chiefly known in
this country, to those who remember Mademoiselle Rachel's brief,
gleaming transit, as the author of _Horace et Lydie_, a light, bright,
graceful piece based upon Horace's "Donec gratus eram tibi."

M. Ponsard, who was from the south of France, arrived in Paris in 1843
with a tragedy called _Lucrèce_, which had been in his pocket for three
years. It was read first at the house of the actor Bocage before a
party of artists, actors and men of letters such as Paris alone can
bring together. The littérateurs gave their opinion with caution and an
oracular ambiguity which did not commit them too much: Gautier, on being
asked how he liked it, replied, "It did not put me to sleep;" but the
sculptor Préault, not having a literary reputation at stake, declared
that if there were a "Roman prize" for tragedy (as there is for music
and the fine arts, entitling the fortunate competitor to four years'
travel and study in classic lands at the expense of the government) the
author would set out on the morrow for the Eternal City. The play was
read again a week or two afterward in the drawing-room of the Comtesse
d'Agoult, the beautiful, gifted, reckless friend of Lizst's youth, and
mother of the wife of Von Bulow and Wagner. The success was complete.
Sainte-Beuve was again present; and Lamartine was among the audience
full of admiration: the poor young poet could not nerve himself to come.
The play was read by Bocage, who took the principal part, that of
Brutus, when it was brought out at the Odéon. The chaste Lucretia was
played by Madame Dorval, whose strength lay in parts of a different
kind, and who announced her new character to a friend with the comment,
"I only play women of virtue now-a-days." Reports of the new tragedy,
which had been heard only in secret session, soon got about Paris, and
excited intense curiosity and impatience; one of the daily papers
published a scene from _Lucrèce_; the sale was immense; everybody
praised it to the skies, even members of the Academy. The next day the
hoax came out: a clever but third-rate writer, M. Méry, had made April
fools of the wits of Paris. The piece itself was soon performed, and
made what is called in this country an immense sensation: the theatre,
long out of favor, was crowded every night; the papers were full of it
every morning; it was the topic about which everybody talked. Authors
who had lately written less popular plays were somewhat envious and
spiteful; Victor Hugo pronounced _Lucrèce_ to be Livy versified; Dumas
repeated (or invented) the speech of an enthusiastic notary, who
exclaimed, "What a piece! Not one of my clerks could have written it."
Madame de Girardin had just brought out her tragedy of _Judith_ at the
Théâtre Français, with the powerful support of Rachel in the principal
character: the drama, when read by Rachel and Madame de Girardin (whose
beauty, wit and social position gave her during her whole life a
fictitious rank in a certain set, of which none were better aware than
the members of it) in Madame Récamier's drawing-room, had produced a
better effect than it did upon the stage, where it was considered a
respectable failure. Madame de Girardin could not control or conceal her
chagrin, and meeting M. Ponsard one evening at the Duchesse de
Grammont's, declined to have him presented to her. He took his honors so
quietly--so tamely in the opinion of some people--that Madame Dorval
exhorted him: "Wake up! wake up! you look like a hen that has hatched an
eagle's egg." Since the Augustan age of French literature, since
Corneille and Racine, a really fine tragedy on a classic subject had
been unknown, and the romantic reaction was then at its height. The
moral view of _Lucrèce_ was a new and important element of success. "The
religious feeling of the Roman matron, the inviolability of the domestic
hearth, are these not new? do not they count for much?" observed the
virtuous philosopher Ballanche, the devoted, unselfish friend of Madame
Récamier. Sainte-Beuve was greatly impressed by the nobility of the
characters and treatment, and after pointing out its beauties and
shortcomings, set the seal to his encomium by affirming that the secret
of the power of _Lucrèce_ was that it had soul.

The extraordinary favor with which this play was received marked an
epoch in a small way, a return to antique ideas and themes, to more
elevated subjects and modes of dealing with them. Six weeks after its
appearance Sainte-Beuve writes: "We have always been rather apish in
France: the Grecian, Roman and biblical tragedies which every day now
brings forth are innumerable. Who will deliver me from these Greeks and
Romans? Here we are overrun by them again after forty years'
insurrection, and by the Hebrews to boot." The high-water mark of the
author's popularity was the publication of a trifle called the
_Anti-Lucrèce_, which was sold in the purlieus of the Odéon: next day
there was a rumor that a second _Anti-Lucrèce_ was in preparation. But
the tide had turned: six months later, when the theatre reopened after
the summer vacation with the same tragedy, Sainte-Beuve records:
"_Lucrèce_ has reappeared only to die, not by the poignard, but of
languor, coldness, premature old age. It is frightful how little and how
fast we live in these times--works as well as men. We survive ourselves
and our children: the generations are turned upside down. Here is a
piece which scarcely six months ago all Paris ran to hear without being
asked:... now they are tired of it already, and can find nothing in it:
it is like last year's snow." The death-blow of the tragedy was given,
Sainte-Beuve says, not by the dagger, but by a luckless blunder of the
actor who played Lucretia's father, and who, instead of saying,
_L'assassin pâlissant_ ("The assassin turning pale,") said, _L'assassin
polisson_ ("The scamp of an assassin"); which set everybody laughing;
and that was the end of it.

M. Ponsard might console himself, if he liked, by the reflection that
his play, if not immortal, had killed his fair rival's _Judith_ and
swallowed up Victor Hugo's _Burgraves_, which had been acted at the
Théâtre Français a month before _Lucrèce_ was first produced. Regarding
the former, Sainte-Beuve shows unwonted tenderness or policy. "Never let
me be too epigrammatic about Madame de Girardin," he wrote to M.
Olivier: "I would not seem to play the traitor to her smiles;" though in
reference to a sharp encounter between her and Jules Janin he hints that
she has claws of her own. He does not deny himself the pleasure of
mentioning Victor Hugo's little weaknesses. At the first three
representations of _Les Burgraves_ the theatre was packed with the
author's friends: on the fourth a less partial public hissed to that
degree that the curtain was dropped, and thenceforward each night was
stormier until the play was withdrawn. Hugo could not bring himself to
allow that he had been hissed, and, being behind the scenes, said to the
actors, with the fatal sibilation whistling through the house, "They are
interrupting my play" (_On trouble ma pièce_); which became a byword
with these wicked wits. Sainte-Beuve, with his infallible instinct of
wherein dwelt the vital greatness or defect of a production,
characterizes the piece as an exaggeration. He admits that it has
talent, especially in the preface, but adds, "Hugo sees all things
larger than life: they look black to him--in _Ruy Blas_ they looked red.
But there is grandeur in the _Burgraves_: he alone, or Chateaubriand,
could have written the introduction.... The banks of the Rhine are not
so lofty and thunder-riven as he makes out, nor is Thessaly so black,
nor Notre Dame so enormous, but more elegant, as may be seen from the
pavement. But this is the defect of his eye."

Amidst these theatrical diversions the chronicler alludes to the
fashionable preaching which occupied the gay world at hours when
playhouses and drawing-rooms were not open. There was a religious
revival going on in Paris almost equal to that which Moody and Sankey
have produced here. "During Passion Week" (1843) "the crowd in all the
churches, but at Notre Dame particularly, was prodigious. M. de Ravignan
preached three times a day--at one o'clock for the women of the gay
world, in the evening for the men, at other hours for the workingmen. He
adapted his sermons to the different classes: to the women of the world
he spoke as a man who knows the world and has belonged to it. They
rushed, they crowded, they wept. I do not know how many communicants
there were at Easter, but I believe the figure has not been so high for
fifty years." At Advent of the same year the same scenes were repeated,
with the Abbé Lacordaire in the pulpit. This excitement, and the debates
in the Chamber on the subject of the theological lectures at the
Sorbonne and College of France, call forth some excellent pages
regarding the condition of Catholicism in France and the Gallican
Church, and a brief, rapid review of the causes of the decline of the
latter, which Sainte-Beuve asserts (more than thirty years ago) to be
defunct. "Gallicanism, the noblest child of Catholicism, is dead before
his father, _who in his dotage remains obstinately faithful to his
principles_.... Gallicanism in its dissolution left a vast patrimony:
the Jesuits may grab a huge bit of it, but the bulk will be diminished
and disseminated.... At the rate things are going, Catholicism is
tending to become _a sect_." The insight of this is as remarkable as the
expression. Some years afterward, marking the progress of liberal ideas
in religion, he says: "Men's conceptions of God are constantly changing.
What was the atheism of yesterday will be the deism of to-morrow."

There are few Frenchman of any calling who are indifferent to politics,
and the men of letters almost without exception are interested
spectators when not actors in public affairs. From 1843 to 1845, the
period of the _Chroniques_, was a dead calm in the political horizon of
France, undisturbed by the little distant cloud of warfare in Algiers:
the Legitimists worked up farcical fermentations which had no more body
or head than those of the present day, although the chances of the party
were rather better. The duke of Bordeaux (as the Comte de Chambord was
then called) made an excursion to England one Christmas, which was
seized as an occasion, or more probably was a preconcerted signal, for a
dreary little demonstration of loyalty on the part of his adherents, who
crossed over to pay their respects to him in London: by great
arithmetical efforts their number was added up and made to amount to
four hundred, though whether so many really went was doubted. There were
a few old noblemen of great family: Berryer the eminent lawyer and
Chateaubriand were the only names of individual distinction in the list,
and the chief results were that Queen Victoria was annoyed (some of the
Orleans family being on a visit to her at the time) and intimated her
annoyance, and that the superb Chateaubriand was spoken of in the
English newspapers as "the good old man;" which Sainte-Beuve enjoyed
extremely.

The _Cahiers_ extend from 1847 to 1869, including the vicissitudes which
brought about the Second Empire, whose annihilation Sainte-Beuve died
half a year too soon to witness. In January, 1848, he felt the storm
brewing in the air, though he little guessed from what quarter it would
come nor on whose head it would burst. On the revolution of the 24th of
February he writes: "What events! what a dream! I was prepared for much,
but not so soon, nor for this.... I am tempted to believe in the nullity
of every judgment, my own in particular--I who make it a business to
judge others, and am so short-sighted.... The future will disclose what
no one can foresee. There is no use in talking of ordinary wisdom
and prudence: they have been utterly at fault. Guizot, the
historian-philosopher, has turned out more stupid than a Polignac:
Utopia and the poet's dream, on the contrary, have become facts and
reality. I forgive Lamartine everything: he has been great during these
days, and done honor to the poetic nature." But afterward, in looking
back to the poet's reign, he grew satirical: "It was in the time of the
good provisional government, which did so many things and left so many
undone. The fortunes of France crumbled to pieces in a fortnight, but it
was under the invocation of equality and fraternity. As to liberty, it
only existed for madmen, and the wise took good care to make no use of
it. 'The great folk are terribly scared,' said my portress, but the
small fry triumphed: it was their turn. So much had never been said
about work before, and so little was never done. People walked about all
day, planted liberty-trees at every street-corner, illuminated
willy-nilly, and perorated in the clubs and squares until midnight. The
Exchange rang with disasters in the morning: in the evening it sparkled
with lanterns and fireworks. It was the gayest anarchy for the lower
classes of Paris, who had no police and looked after themselves. The
street-boys ran about with flags; workmen without work, but paid
nevertheless, walked in perpetual procession; the demireps had kicked
over the traces, and on the sidewalks the most virtuous
fellow-citizenesses were hugged without ceremony: it must be added that
they did not resent it too much. The grisettes, having nothing to eat,
gave themselves away for nothing or next to nothing, as during the
Fronde. The chorus of the Girondists was sung on every open lot, and
there was a feast of addresses. Lamartine wrought marvels such as
Ulysses might have done, and he was the siren of the hour. Yet they
laughed and joked, and the true French wit revived. There was general
good-humor and amiability in those first days of a most licentious
spring sunshine. There was an admixture of bad taste, as there always is
in the people of Paris when they grow sentimental. They made grotesque
little gardens round the liberty-trees, which they watered
assiduously.... The small fry adored their provisional government, as
they formerly did their good king Louis XII., and more than one simple
person said with emotion, 'It must be admitted that we are well
governed, _they talk so well!_'" Before three months had elapsed the
provisional government was at an end: "their feet slipped in
blood--literally, in torrents of blood." "The politicians of late years
have been playing a game of chess, intent wholly upon the board, but
never giving a thought to the table under the board. But the table was
alive, the back of a people which began to move, and in the twinkling of
an eye chessboard and men went to the devil."

Among the entries of the next ten or twelve years are sketches of the
leading statesmen and scraps of their conversation: those of Thiers are
very animated. Sainte-Beuve says that he has a happiness of verbal
expression which eludes his pen; "yet raise him upon a pinnacle of works
of art" (of which M. Thiers has always been a patron publicly and
privately), "of historical monuments and flatterers, and he will never
be aught but the cleverest of marmosets." If he had lived another
twelvemonth, Sainte-Beuve might have had some other word for the Great
Citizen. On Guizot he is still more severe, making him out a mere
humbug, and of the poorest sort. When the poet Auguste Barbier became a
candidate for the French Academy, M. Guizot had never heard of him, and
had to be told all about him and his verses--there was surely no
disgrace in this ignorance on the part of a man engrossed in studies and
pursuits of a more serious nature--but before a week was over he was
heard expressing amazement that another person knew nothing of Barbier,
and talking of his poems as if he had always been familiar with them.
The Duchesse de Broglie said: "What M. Guizot has known since morning he
pretends to have known from all eternity."

This paper might be prolonged almost to the length of the volumes
themselves by quoting all the keen, sagacious or brilliant sayings
which they contain. Two more, merely to exemplify Sainte-Beuve's command
of words in very different lines of thought: "The old fragments of cases
in [Greek: phi] and [Greek: then], the ancient remains of verbs in
[Greek: mi] the second aorists, which alone survive the other submerged
tenses, always produce the same effect upon me, in view of the regular
declensions and conjugations, as the multitude of the isles and Cyclades
in relation to the Peloponnesus and the rest of the mainland on the map
of Greece: there was a time when they were all one. The rocks and peaks
still stand to attest it."--"_Never_ is a word which has always brought
bad luck to him who used it from the tribune."

M. Troubat speaks of the correspondence of Sainte-Beuve as destined for
publication: the _Chroniques_ and _Cahiers_ are like anchovies to whet
the appetite for a longer and more continuous reading.

                                      SARAH B. WISTER.

FOOTNOTES:

[C] _Chroniques Parisiennes_ and _Les Cahiers de Sainte-Beuve_.



A FEW LETTERS.


                              BROOKSIDE, April 12, 1872.

Dear Cousin Bessie: It does not seem possible that but two months from
to-day I saw you standing on your porch in good old Applethorpe bidding
me an April "farewell." I can see you now, as I saw you then,
smiling--or rather laughing--and saying, "Write! write often; and if you
can't find any _real_ news, make something up." I little thought then I
should so soon find material for correspondence. He was very sick at
first, but really seems better now. But I forgot you don't know anything
about him. Well! neither do _I_ much, but "what I have I give unto
thee." So, I'll begin at the beginning of my romance.

Day before yesterday, as I was engaged in the very romantic work of
ploughing, I heard a clattering of hoofs and the snort and pant of a
horse at full tear. In an instant the runaway was brought up, bang!
against my fence. It was the work of but a moment to leap over and seize
the animal. I then perceived his rider clinging, senseless, to the
saddle by one stirrup. It is a great mercy to him that he was not
killed, but he had been dragged but a short distance, and was therefore
not severely injured. I secured the horse to the fence as quickly as
possible, and then disengaged the gentleman. Upon removing him to the
house, sending for a physician and applying various remedies, his
consciousness was restored, and we soon discovered his injuries as well
as a little of his history. His wounds prove to be bruises about the
head and face (more disfiguring than serious), and a broken leg which
it will take several weeks to cure.

So here he is on my hands till he is well. I'm not sorry, either, for
"it is not good for man to be alone," and I find him my nearest
neighbor--like me an orphan, like me with a small fortune, consisting
principally of his farm, and about my age. I've no doubt we shall get
along capitally. I shall write every few days of his progress, knowing
that you will be interested in whatever interests me. Don't forget to
send me all the gossip of Applethorpe, for I am going to make my
neighbor acquainted with all the inhabitants of Applethorpe by
proxy--_i. e._, through your letters; so write your most entertaining
ones, as I expect to read them all aloud to amuse and interest a
captious invalid. "No more at present" from your affectionate cousin,

                                    PHILIP AUBREY.


TO MISS BESSIE LINTON, Applethorpe.

                              APPLETHORPE, April 20, 1872.

MY DEAR BOY: Your letter duly rec'd. I am glad you have found
companionship, though I am sorry for him that it should be an accident
that literally "threw" him in your way. You did not tell me his name, or
anything but the bare fact of his accident. Be sure that you will find
in me an interested listener--or rather _reader_--of anything you may
choose to tell me. But don't leave accounts of _yourself_ out of your
letters in order to make room for _him_. Remember, you are my only
relation, the only person in the world in whom I have a right to be
interested. It does not seem possible to me, when I think of it, that
there is only five years' difference in our ages: why, I'm sure I feel
ten years older, instead of five. I was very young at fifteen to take
charge of a great boy of ten; and if it were not that you were the good
boy you always were, I never could have fulfilled the charge your dying
mother left me. Do not think, dear, I was not _glad_ to do it for her.
Could I ever, _ever_, if I worked five times as hard as I have since she
left you, repay all that she did for me, the poor miserable, shy orphan
left to her care?

But out upon these memories! Let us deal with the present and future.

_Item._ Mary Montrose's engagement to Joel Roberts is "out" to-day. I'm
glad, for I'm tired of keeping the secret. Poor dear Mary! I do _hope_
she will be happy. She inquires very cordially after you every time she
sees me. She doesn't know she blasted one of my most precious hopes when
she told me she was engaged to Joel.

Good-bye, dear! Be sure and write long letters to your affectionate
cousin,

                                    BESSIE L----.

                              BROOKSIDE, April 30, 1872.

DEAR BESS: Please excuse my not answering your last two letters, on the
plea of business. Indeed, working and waiting on my friend, George
Hammond, have occupied all my time.

Now, Bessie, I want you to do something for me. Yesterday, when I got
your letter, I read it aloud as usual, George looking very sad the
while. When I was done he said in a trembling tone, "I wish to heaven
there was some one in the world nearly enough related to me to care to
write to me! But I am alone, entirely alone;" and his eyes filled.
(Forgive his weakness, Bess: he has been very sick.) I tried to cheer
him, but all to no purpose till an idea struck him. His face
brightening, he said, "Do you believe, Philip--I know it is a great deal
to ask--but do you believe you could persuade your cousin to write to
_me_? I should prize it _so_ much. Do you think she _would_? Just fancy
what it is never to receive a letter from any one except a
business-man!"

Now, Bessie, _won't_ you write him once in a while? There is not a
particle of harm in it, and I assure you it will be a real boon to the
poor fellow. Just imagine him lying here on his back day after day, and
not a thing to amuse him but my company!

Of course you'll say that you can have nothing to write about to a
stranger. But you'll soon find something, _I_ know: I'll trust to your
"woman's wit." Ask him about his past life: begin _that_ way. But there!
I'll not give you any advice on the subject: you understand writing
letters better than I do. So good-bye, "fair coz." Pray accede to my
request.

                                    Yours, etc.,
                                       PHILIP A----.

                              BROOKSIDE, July 1, 1872.

MY DEAREST BESSIE: I'm getting jealous! Twice within a week have you
written to George Hammond, and but once to me. Your letters to him are
long, I know, for I see him read them. The correspondence is become
something desperate--no wonder. He has just told me that through your
letters he has become very deeply attached to you, and that when I
return home at the end of another week he will come and plead his cause
personally. He asks my benediction. I am sure he has my most hearty good
wishes, and I do hope, Bessie dear, you may be inclined to say "Yes."
Then, after you are married, you can come out here and settle down near
your only remaining relative for the rest of your natural existence. You
smile and shake your head, and say, "Oh yes, that will last till Philip
marries!" But I say that if I see you and George Hammond united, it is
all I ask.

But I shall say no more. He can plead better by word of mouth than I by
paper, I hope. Ever your devoted

                                                PHILIP.

                                 TO MISS BESSIE LINTON.

A week later, Bessie Linton, fair and young spite of her thirty years,
waited at the Applethorpe station in her pony-carriage for her cousin
and his friend. She was possessed by so many emotions that she hardly
knew whether she most wished or most dreaded seeing the visitors. That
she was herself deeply interested in George Hammond she did not pretend
to deny even to herself; yet just at the last she dreaded seeing him. It
seemed to bring everything so near.

The whistle sounded round the bend, and in another moment the dreaded,
hoped-for train arrived. There alighted from it a number of passengers,
but none that Bessie recognized at all. Presently there came toward her
a gentleman with full beard and moustache, holding out his hand and
exclaiming, "Cousin Bessie, don't you know me?"

"Why, Philip Aubrey! No, I _didn't_. Why, where--" and she hesitated a
half second--"where is my Philip gone?"

"He's here alive and hearty, and the same old scapegrace, I'm afraid."

Then, seeing the look of inquiry and suspense on her face, he added with
considerable embarrassment, "George didn't come just yet. I'll tell you
all about it when we get home."

She was forced to be satisfied, but a nameless feeling of "something"
made the drive a rather silent one, although each tried spasmodically to
start a conversation. Tea over, Philip drew Bessie out into the garden,
and sitting down in a rustic scat, said, "Bessie, come and sit down: I
want to talk to you." Simply, straightforwardly as of old, she came.

"Bessie dear," said Philip, "I have something to say, and don't know how
to say it. But I guess the only way is to tell the truth at once. There
is no such person as George Hammond."

Bessie's heart-blood stopped for what seemed half an hour, and then she
articulated slowly, "Then who wrote those letters, Philip?"

"_I_ did," he answered sadly.

She started away from him as if he had been a serpent. She walked up and
down like a caged animal. At last her scorn burst forth: "_You_, Philip
Aubrey! _you_! You have dared to laugh me to scorn, have you? You have
dared to presume that because I am what the world calls an 'old maid,' I
am a fit mark for the arrows of the would-be wits? Philip Aubrey, all I
have to wish is, that your actions may recoil upon yourself." She would
have said more, but her feelings overcame her entirely, and sitting down
she covered her face with her hand, the tears trickling through her
fingers.

"Oh, Bessie! Bessie! they have. Bitterly have I repented of my ruse. But
I know if you will hear me you will not judge me harshly."

She drew herself up, and throwing all possible scorn into her face,
said, "Go! and if there remains in your body one vestige of feeling
belonging to a gentleman, never let me look upon your face again."

Like a stricken cur he went from her presence. He knew her too well: he
knew that once roused as she now was, years could not efface her
impression. He knew she would listen to no apology, no word of any kind;
so the only thing left for him to do, as she had expressed it, was to
"leave her presence."

As soon as he was fairly gone Bessie rose, went into the house, locked
herself in her own room and struggled with herself. She did not even
pretend to herself that her trouble was not hard to bear. What did life
hold for her now? She had not even the cousin on whom her affections had
so long been centred as her one living relation.

"Oh, if he had only died! if he had only died before he deceived me this
way!" she moaned, "I think I should have borne it more easily. It cannot
be called the thoughtless trick of a boy: he is too old, and has carried
it on too long, and planned it all too systematically, for that."

Three hours after she came from her vigil pale and silent, but a
conqueror. A little card stuck in the drawing-room mirror told her that
Philip had started for New York on his way to his Western home again.

"I declare, Ophelie, Bessie Linton's awful queer about Philip Aubrey.
Last night I says to her, says I, 'Bessie, I hear Philip Aubrey's
home--is he?' First she turned mighty red, and then as white as a sheet,
and she seemed kind a-chokin' like; but in a moment she says, 'So he
was, Mrs. Dartle, but he found some pressing business that took him back
a great deal sooner than he expected.' 'La!' says I, 'what a pity! You
ain't seen him for so long, and you was so attached to him!' And she
says, just as cold as an ice-pitcher, 'I shall miss him very much. Have
you seen my new heliotrope, Mrs. Dartle?' So I couldn't say anything
more, but I declare to man I'd give a penny to know what's the
matter--such friends as they used to be, too! You may depend upon it the
fault's on his side. Mebbe he's done something dreadful."

So things got whispered around, not very much to the credit of Mr.
Aubrey, but after Mrs. Dartle's rebuff no one dared question Miss
Linton, knowing her so well.

Day succeeded day, and no one knew the bitterness that filled Miss
Linton's heart so full that it seemed as if it must burst. Then came a
letter from Philip. "Shall I open it? No, I will send it back. That he
should dare to write again!" One mail followed another, and still the
letter was unsent, was unopened. At last, after a fortnight had passed,
her good sense got the better of her ill-feeling, and she said to
herself, "I will at least see what he can say for himself in excuse. I
need not answer it." So she opened it, and read as follows:

                              BROOKSIDE, October 8, 1872.

MY MUCH-ABUSED COUSIN: I dare not even _hope_ that you will not return
this unopened. But if you do open it I hope you may read what I have to
say without _too_ bitter feelings. Where shall I commence to tell you my
story?

You know what you said in regard to "making up" news, and one day as I
was out riding my horse _did_ land me at my own fence in the way I
described. For weeks I lay on a bed of the most excruciating torture.
Then I began to recover, and although I was confined to a sofa my
faculties were on the alert, and I was pretty nearly distracted for
something to do to amuse myself with. Finally, a brilliant idea struck
me, and you were the victim of its execution. Believe me, believe me,
Bessie dear, I only meant it for the harmless amusement of a week or
two, but I became so interested in your letters to my imaginary friend
that I could not bear to give them up. I had, Bessie, as I told you,
learned to love you from your letters. They were so precious to me, it
seemed like tearing from me a part of my very life to think of letting
you know how I had deceived you, and so closing all the correspondence
(which meant so much to me) between us. You will say I was cowardly. I
_was_: I know it, and I admit it. But, Bessie, Bessie, I loved you so!
Let my love plead for me. I thought it would be easier for me to tell
you face to face. But God knows the hardest task I ever set myself was
telling you how I had deceived you.

Bessie, don't cast me off! Can't you find a little corner in your heart
wherein I may rest? Let me be your cousin: of course I dare not hope
ever to be anything dearer. But if you only will forgive me the trick
into which I was led by sickness and want of amusement, and afterward
continued from love of you, it is all I dare ask.

                                    Ever your devoted
                                      PHILIP.

Emotions of various kinds seized the soul of Bessie Linton as she read
Philip's letter once, twice, thrice. First, her heart was hardened to
anything he might say--then as he told of his sufferings a little pity
crept in; and finally, as she concluded the last word for the third
time, her heart was so overflowing with pity--which is akin to
love--that she--forgave him.

At least, so I suppose, as they passed my window just now laughing, and
as happy a married couple as ever you saw, if she _is_ "five years older
than he is, and had the bringin' of him up," to use Mrs. Dartle's
expression.

                                        E. C. HEWITT.



FROM THE FLATS.


    What heartache--ne'er a hill!
    Inexorable, vapid, vague and chill
    The drear sand-levels drain my spirit low.
    With one poor word they tell me all they know;
    Whereat their stupid tongues, to tease my pain,
    Do drawl it o'er again and o'er again.
    They hurt my heart with griefs I cannot name:
        Always the same, the same.

    Nature hath no surprise,
    No ambuscade of beauty 'gainst mine eyes
    From brake or lurking dell or deep defile;
    No humors, frolic forms--this mile, that mile;
    No rich reserves or happy-valley hopes
    Beyond the bends of roads, the distant slopes
    Her fancy fails, her wild is all run tame:
        Ever the same, the same.

    Oh might I through these tears
    But glimpse some hill my Georgia high uprears,
    Where white the quartz and pink the pebbles shine,
    The hickory heavenward strives, the muscadine
    Swings o'er the slope, the oak's far-falling shade
    Darkens the dogwood in the bottom-glade,
    And down the hollow from a ferny nook
        Bright leaps a living brook!

                                 SIDNEY LANIER.



A DAY'S MARCH THROUGH FINLAND.


"Why don't you go to Imatra?" asks my friend P---- as we lean over the
side of the Peterhof steamer and watch the golden domes of St.
Petersburg rising slowly from the dull gray level of the Gulf of
Finland. "Now that you've seen a bit of Central Russia, that's the next
thing for you to do. Go to Imatra, and I'll go too."

"And where on earth _is_ Imatra?" ask I innocently.

"Oh come! you don't mean to say you've never heard of Imatra? Why,
everybody knows it. Let's go there next week."

Nevertheless, it so happens that I have _not_ heard of Imatra--an
ignorance probably shared by most people out of Russia, and perhaps not
a few in it. But I am destined to a speedier acquaintance than I had
anticipated with the famous waterfall (or "foss," as the natives call
it), which, lying forty miles due north of the Finnish port of Viborg,
close to the renowned "Saima Lake," attracts the amateur fishermen of
St. Petersburg by scores every summer.

The proposed trip comes at an auspicious moment, for St. Petersburg in
July is as thoroughly a "city of the dead" as London in September or
Chamouni in January; and the average tourist, having eaten cabbage-soup
at Wolff's or Dominique's, promenaded the Nevski Prospect and bought
photographs in the Gostinni-Dvor (the Russian Regent street and
Burlington Arcade), witnessed a service in the Isaac Church, and perhaps
gone on to Moscow to stare at the Kremlin and the Monster Bell, must
either await the approach of winter or fall back upon the truly British
consolation of being able to "say that he has been there." Then is the
time for suburban or rural jaunts; for picnics at Peterhof and drives to
Oranienbaum; for wandering through the gardens of Catherine II. at
Tsarskoe-Selo ("Czar's Village") and eating curds and cream at
Pavlovski; for surveying the monastery of Strelna or the batteries of
Cronstadt; or, finally, for taking the advice of my roving friend and
going to Imatra.

Accordingly, behold all our preparations made--knapsacks packed,
tear-and-wear garments put in requisition, many-colored Russian notes
exchanged (at a fearful discount) for dingy Finnish silver[D]--and at
half-past ten on a not particularly bright July morning we stand on the
deck of the anything but "good ship" Konstantin, bound for Viborg.

Despite her tortoise qualities as a steamer, however (which prolong our
voyage to nearly nine hours), the vessel is really luxurious in her
accommodations; and were her progress even slower, the motley groups
around us (groups such as only Dickens could describe or Leech portray)
would sufficiently beguile the time--jaunty boy-officers in brand-new
uniforms, gallantly puffing their _papirossi_ (paper cigarettes) in
defiance of coming nausea, and discussing the merits of the new opera
loud enough to assure every one within earshot that they know nothing
whatever about it; squat Finnish peasants, whose round, puffy faces and
thick yellow hair are irresistibly suggestive of overboiled
apple-dumplings; gray-coated Russian soldiers, with the dogged endurance
of their race written in every line of their patient, solid, unyielding
faces; a lanky Swede, whose huge cork hat and broad collar give him the
look of an exaggerated medicine-bottle; the inevitable tourist in the
inevitable plaid suit, struggling with endless convolutions of
fishing-tackle and hooking himself in a fresh place at every turn; three
or four pale-faced clerks on leave, looking very much as if their
"overwork" had been in some way connected with cigars and bad brandy; a
German tradesman from Vasili-Ostroff (with the short turnip-colored
moustache characteristic of Wilhelm in his normal state), in dutiful
attendance on his wife, who is just completing her preparations for
being comfortably ill as soon as the vessel starts; and a fine specimen
of the real British merchant, talking vehemently (in a miraculous
dialect of his own invention) to a Russian official, whose air of
studied politeness shows plainly that he does not understand a word of
his neighbor's discourse.

Directly we go off the rain comes on, with that singular fatality
characteristic of pleasure-trips in general, arising, doubtless, from
the mysterious law which ordains that a man shall step into a puddle the
instant he has had his boots blacked, and that a piece of
bread-and-butter shall fall (how would Sir Isaac Newton have accounted
for it?) with the buttered side downward. In a trice the deck is
deserted by all save two or three self-devoted martyrs in macintosh, who
"pace the plank" with that air of stern resolution worn by an Englishman
when dancing a quadrille or discharging any other painful duty. The
scenery throughout the entire voyage consists chiefly of fog, relieved
by occasional patches of sand-bank; and small wonder if the superior
attractions of the well-spread dinner-table detain most of our
fellow-sufferers below. What is this first dish that they offer us? _Raw
salmon_, by the shade of Soyer! sliced thin and loaded with pepper. Then
follow soup, fried trout, roast beef, boiled ditto, slices of German
sausage, neck of veal and bacon, fried potatoes and cabbage. Surely,
now, "Hold, enough!" Not a bit of it: enter an enormous plum-pudding,
which might do duty for a globe at any provincial school; next, a dish
of rice and preserve, followed by some of the strongest conceivable
cheese; finally, strawberries, and bilberries, with cream and sugar _ad
libitum_. Involuntarily I recall the famous old American story of the
"boss" at a railway refreshment-room who demanded fifty cents extra from
a passenger who stuck to the table after all the rest had dined and gone
away. "Your board says, 'Dinner, three dollars and fifty cents!'"
remonstrated the victim.--"Ah! that's all very well for reasonable
human bein's with one stomach apiece," retorted the Inexorable; "but
when a feller eats _as if there were no hereafter_, we've got to pile it
on!"

As we pass Cronstadt the fog "lifts" slightly, giving us a momentary
glimpse of the huge forts that guard the passage--the locked door which
bars out Western Europe. There is nothing showy or pretentious about
these squat, round-shouldered, narrow-eyed sentinels of the channel; but
they have a grim air of reserved strength, as though they could be
terribly effective in time of need. Two huge forts now command the
"southern channel," in addition to the four which guarded it at the time
of the Baltic expedition during the Crimean war; and the land-batteries
(into which no outsider is now admitted without special permission) are
being strengthened by movable shields of iron and other appliances of
the kind, for which nearly one million roubles (one hundred and fifty
thousand pounds) have been set apart. The seaward approaches are
commanded by numerous guns of formidable calibre, and far away on the
long, level promontory of the North Spit we can just descry a dark
excrescence--the battery recently constructed for the defence of the
"northern passage." Thus, from the Finnish coast to Oranienbaum a
bristling line of unbroken fortification proclaims Russia's aversion to
war, and the gaping mouths of innumerable cannon announce to all who
approach, with silent eloquence, that "L'empire c'est la paix." It is a
fine political parable that the Western traveler's first glimpse of
Russian civilization should assume the form of a line of batteries,
reminding one of poor Mungo Park's splendid unconscious sarcasm, when,
while wandering helplessly in the desert, he came suddenly upon a gibbet
with a man hanging in chains upon it; "Whereupon," says he, "I kneeled
down and gave hearty thanks to Almighty God, who had been pleased to
conduct me once more into a Christian and civilized country."

As the afternoon creeps on the rain seems to fall heavier, the fog to
brood thicker, the steamer to go (if possible) slower than before.
However, everything earthly has an end except a suit in chancery; and by
nightfall (if there _be_ any nightfall in this wonderful region, where
it is lighter at midnight than in England at daybreak) we reach Viborg,
a neat little town built along the edge of a narrow inlet, with the
straight, wide, dusty streets which characterize every Russian town from
Archangelsk to Sevastopol. Along the edge of the harbor runs a well
laid-out promenade, a favorite resort after sunset, when the cool breeze
from the gulf comes freshly in after the long, sultry hours of the
afternoon. Behind it cluster, like a heap of colored pebbles, the
painted wooden houses of the town; while over all stands, like a veteran
sentinel, the gray massive tower of the old castle, frowning upon the
bristling masts of the harbor like the Past scowling at the Present.

The rippling sea in front and the dark belt of forest behind give the
whole place a very picturesque appearance; but the beauty of the latter
is sorely marred by the destroying sweep of a recent hurricane, traces
of which are still visible in the long swathes of fallen trees that lie
strewn amid the greenwood, like the dead among the living.

In the solemn, subdued light of the northern evening we rattle in a
crazy drosky over the uneven stones of the town into the vast desolate
square in which stands the solitary hotel, a huge barrack-like building,
up and down which we wander for some time, like the prince in the
Sleeping Beauty's palace, without meeting any sign of life, till at
length in a remote corner we come suddenly upon a chubby little waiter
about the size of a well-grown baby, to whom we give our orders. This,
however, is his first and last appearance, for every time we ring a
different waiter, of the same diminutive size, answers the bell; which
oppresses us with an undefined apprehension of having got into a
charity-school by mistake.

When I first made the acquaintance of Viborg, a journey thither from St.
Petersburg, though the distance by land is only about eighty miles, was
no light undertaking. The daring traveler who elected to travel by road
had no choice but to provide himself with abundant wrappings and a good
stock of food, draw his strong boots up to his knee, fortify his inner
man with scalding tea or fiery corn-whisky, and struggle through
axle-deep mud or breast-high snow (according to the season), sometimes
for two days together. "Mais nous avons changé tout cela." Two trains
run daily from St. Petersburg, covering the whole distance in about four
hours, and the stations along the line, though bearing marks of hasty
construction, are still sufficiently comfortable and well supplied with
provisions. Thanks to this direct communication with the capital, Viborg
is now completely _au fait_ of the news of the day, and all fashionable
topics are canvassed as eagerly on the promenade of this little Finnish
seaport as along the pavements of the Nevski Prospect.

"We must breakfast early to-morrow, mind," says P---- as we settle into
our respective beds, "for a march in the sun here is no joke, you bet!"

"Worse than in Arabia or South America?" ask I with calm scorn.

"You'll find the north of Russia a pretty fair match for both at this
season. Do you happen to know that one of the hottest places in the
world is Archangelsk on the White Sea? In summer the pitch melts off the
vessels like butter, and the mosquitoes are so thick that the men on
board the grain-ships fairly burrow into the corn for shelter.[E]
Good-night! Sharp six to-morrow, mind!"

Accordingly, the early daylight finds us tramping along the edge of the
picturesque little creek (dappled here and there with wood-crowned
islets) in order to get well into our work before the sun is high in the
sky, for a forty-mile march, knapsack on shoulder, across a difficult
country, in the heat of a real Russian summer, is not a thing to be
trifled with, even by men who have seen Turkey and Syria. A sudden turn
of the road soon blots out the sea, and we plunge at once into the
green silent depths of the northern forest.

It is characteristic of the country that, barely out of sight of one of
the principal ports of Finland, we are in the midst of a loneliness as
utter as if it had never been broken by man. The only tokens of his
presence are the narrow swathe of road running between the dim, unending
files of the shadowy pine trees, and the tall wooden posts, striped
black and white like a zebra, which mark the distance in versts from
Viborg, the verst being two-thirds of a mile.

To an unpractised eye the marvelous smoothness and hardness of this
forest highway (unsurpassed by any macadamized road in England) might
suggest a better opinion of the local civilization than it deserves; for
in this case it is the soil, not the administration, that merits all the
credit. In granite-paved Finland, as in limestone-paved Barbados, Nature
has already laid down your road in a way that no human engineering can
rival, and all you have to do is to smooth it to your own liking.

And now the great panorama of the far North--a noble change from the
flat unending monotony of the Russian steppes--begins in all its
splendor. At one moment we are buried in a dark depth of forest, shadowy
and spectral as those which haunt us in the weird outlines of Retzsch;
the next minute we burst upon an open valley, bright with fresh grass,
and with a still, shining lake slumbering in the centre, the whole
picture framed in a background of sombre woods. Here rise giant boulders
of granite, crested with spreading pines--own brothers, perhaps, of the
block dragged hence eighty years ago from which the greatest of Russian
rulers still looks down upon the city that bears his name;[F] there,
bluffs of wooded hill rear themselves above the surrounding sea of
foliage, and at times the roadside is dotted with the little wooden huts
of the natives, whence wooden-faced women, turbaned with colored
handkerchiefs, and white-headed children, in nothing but a short
night-gown with a warm lining of dirt, stare wonderingly at us as we go
striding past. And over all hangs the clear, pearly-gray northern sky.

One hour is past, and still the air keeps moderately fresh, although the
increasing glare warns us that it will be what I once heard a British
tourist call "more hotterer" by and by. So far, however, we have not
turned a hair, and the second hour's work matches the first to an inch.
As we pass through the little hamlet which marks the first quarter of
our allotted distance we instinctively pull out our watches: "Ten miles
in two hours! Not so bad, but we must keep it up."

So we set ourselves to the third hour, and out comes the sun--bright and
beautiful and destroying as Homer's Achilles:

    Bright are his rays, but evil fate they send,
    And to sad man destroying heat portend.

Hitherto, despite the severity of our pace, we have contrived to keep up
a kind of flying conversation, but now grim silence settles on our way.
There is a point in every match against time when the innate ferocity of
man, called forth by the exercises which civilization has borrowed from
the brute creation, comes to the front in earnest--when your best friend
becomes your deadly enemy, and the fact of his being one stride in
advance of you is an injury only to be atoned by blood. Such is the
precise point that we have reached now; and when we turn from exchanging
malignant looks with each other, it is only to watch with ominous
eagerness for the coming in sight of the painted verst-posts, which
somehow appear to succeed one another far more slowly than they did an
hour ago.

By the middle of the fourth hour we are marching with coats off and
sleeves rolled up, like amateur butchers; and although our "pace" is as
good as ever, the elastic swing of our first start is now replaced by
that dogged, "hard-and-heavy" tramp which marks the point where the
flesh and the spirit begin to pull in opposite directions. Were either
of us alone, the pace would probably slacken at once, and each may
safely say in his heart, as Condorcet said of the dying D'Alembert,
"Had I not been there he _must_ have flinched!"

But just as the fourth hour comes to an end (during which we have looked
at our watches as often as Wellington during the terrible mid-day hours
that preceded the distant boom of the Prussian cannon) we come round a
sharp bend in the road, and there before us lies the quaint little
log-built post-house (the "halfway house" in very truth), with its
projecting roof and painted front and striped doorposts; just at which
auspicious moment I stumble and twist my foot.

"You were right to reserve _that_ performance to the last," remarks
P---- with a grin, helping me to the door; and we order a _samovar_
(tea-urn) to be heated, while we ourselves indulge in a scrambling wash
of the rudest kind, but very refreshing nevertheless.

Reader, did you ever walk five miles an hour for four hours together
over a hilly country, with the thermometer at eighty-three degrees in
the shade? If so, then will you appreciate our satisfaction as we throw
aside our heavy boots, plunge our swollen feet into cold water, and,
with coats off and collars thrown open, sit over our tea and black bread
in that quaint little cross-beamed room, with an appetite never excited
by the best _plats_ of the Erz-Herzog Karl or the Trois Frères
Provençaux. Two things, at least, one may always be sure of finding in
perfection at a Russian post-station: tea is the one; the other I need
not particularize, as its presence does not usually become apparent till
you "retire to rest" (?).

Our meal being over and my foot still unfit for active service, we order
a _telyayga_ (cart) and start anew for Imatra Foss. Our vehicle is
simply a wooden tray on wheels, with a bag of hay in it, on which we do
our best to recline, while our driver perches himself on the edge of the
cart, thereby doubtless realizing vividly the sensation of rowing hard
in a pair of thin unmentionables. Thanks to the perpetual gaps in the
road formed by the great thaw two months ago (the Finnish winter ending
about the beginning of May), during the greater part of the ride we
play an animated though involuntary game of cup-and-ball, being thrown
up and caught again incessantly. At length a dull roar, growing ever
louder and louder, breaks the dreamy stillness of the forest, and before
long we come to a little chalet-like inn embosomed in trees, where we
alight, for this is the "Imatra Hotel."

Let us cast one glance out of the back window before sitting down to
supper (in a long, bare, chilly chamber like a third-class
waiting-room), for such a view is not seen every day. We are on the very
brink of a deep narrow gorge, the upper part of which is so thickly clad
with pines as to resemble the crest of some gigantic helmet, but beneath
the naked granite stands out in all its grim barrenness, lashed by the
spray of the mighty torrent that roars between its projecting rocks.
Just below us, the river, forced back by a huge boulder in the centre of
its course, literally piles itself up into a kind of liquid mound,
foaming, flashing and trembling incessantly, the ceaseless motion and
tremendous din of the rapids having an indescribably bewildering effect.

On quitting our inn the next morning a very picturesque walk of half an
hour brings us to a little hut beside the Saima Ferry, where we find a
party of "three fishers" from St. Petersburg, comprising a Russian
colonel, an ex-chasseur d'Afrique (now an actor at one of the Russian
theatres) and an Englishman. The three give us a cordial welcome, and
insist upon our joining them; and for the next few days our surroundings
are savagely picturesque enough to satisfy Jean-Jacques himself--living
in a cabin of rough-hewn logs plastered with mud, sleeping on a bundle
of straw, with our knapsacks for a pillow; tramping for miles every day
through the sombre pine forest or fishing by moonlight in the shadowy
lake, with the silence of a newly-created world all around; and having
an "early pull" every morning across the ferry with our host, a squat,
yellow-haired, gnome-like creature in sheepskin frock and bark shoes,
who manifests unbounded amazement every time he sees us washing our
hands.

But the lake itself is, if possible, even more picturesque than the
river. It is one of those long, straggling bodies of water so common in
the far North, resembling not so much one great lake as an endless
series of small ones. Just at the sortie of the river a succession of
rapids, scarcely less magnificent than those of the "Foss" itself, rush
between the wooded shores, their unresting whirl and fury contrasting
gloriously with the vast expanse of glassy water above, crested with
leafy islets and mirroring the green boughs that droop over it along the
shore. Here did we spend many a night fishing and "spinning yarns," in
both of which accomplishments the ex-chasseur was pre-eminent; and
strange enough it seemed, lying in the depths of that northern forest,
to listen to descriptions of the treeless sands of Egypt and the burning
wastes of the Sahara. Our midnight camp, on a little promontory just
above the rapids, was a study for Rembrandt--the slender pine-stems
reddened by the blaze of our camp-fire; the group of bearded faces
coming and going as the light waxed and waned; beyond the circle of
light a gloom all the blacker for the contrast; the ghostly white of the
foam shimmering through the leaves, and the clear moonlit sky
overhanging all.

When a wet day came upon us the inexhaustible ex-chasseur (who, like
Frederick the Great, could "do everything but keep still") amused
himself and us with various experiments in cookery, of which art he was
a perfect master. His versatility in sauces might have aroused the envy
of Soyer himself, and the party having brought with them a large stock
of provisions, he was never at a loss for materials. Our ordinary dinner
consisted of trout sauced with red wine, mutton, veal, duck, cheese,
fresh strawberries and coffee; after which every man took his tumbler of
tea, with a slice of lemon in it, from the stove, and the evening began.

_The_ sight of the country, however, is undoubtedly the natives
themselves. Their tawny skins, rough yellow hair and coarse flat faces
would look uninviting enough to those who have never seen a Kalmuck or a
Samoyede, but, despite their diet of dried fish and bread mixed with
sawdust, both men and women are remarkably healthy and capable of
surprising feats of strength and endurance. They make great use of bark
for caps, shoes, plates, etc., in the making of which they are very
skillful. As to their dress, it baffles description, and the horror of
my friend the ex-chasseur at his first glimpse of it was as good as a
play. On one occasion he was criticising severely the "rig" of some
passing natives: "Voilà un qui porte un pantalon et point de bottes--un
autre qui a des bottes et point de pantalon; peut-être que le troisième
n'aura ni l'un ni l'autre!" At last came one with a pair of boots almost
big enough to go to sea in, and turned up like an Indian canoe. Our
critic eyed them in silence for a moment, and then said with a shudder,
"Ce sont des bottes impossibles!"

But there needs only a short journey here to show the folly of further
annexations on the part of Russia while those already made are so
lamentably undeveloped. Finland, which, rightly handled, might be one of
the czar's richest possessions, is now, after nearly seventy years'
occupation, as unprofitable as ever. Throughout the whole province there
are only three hundred and ninety-eight miles of railway.[G] Post-roads,
scarce enough in the South, are absolutely wanting in the North. Steam
navigation on the Gulf of Bothnia extends only to Uleaborg, and is, so
far as I can learn, actually non-existent on the great lakes, except
between Tanasthuus and Tammerfors. Such is the state of a land
containing boundless water-power, countless acres of fine timber,
countless shiploads of splendid granite. But what can be expected of an
untaught population under two millions left to themselves in an
unreclaimed country nearly as large as France?

Helsingfors can now be reached from St. Petersburg, _viâ_ Viborg, in
fourteen and a half hours; but what is one such line to the boundless
emptiness of Finland? The fearful lesson of 1869 will not be easily
forgotten, when all the horrors of famine were let loose at once upon
the unhappy province. Seed-corn was exhausted: bread became dear, dearer
still, and then failed altogether. Men, women and children, struggling
over snowy moors and frozen lakes toward the distant towns in which lay
their only chance of life, dropped one by one on the long march of
death, and were devoured ere they were cold by the pursuing wolves. Nor
did the survivors fare much better: some reached the haven of refuge
only to fall dead in its very streets. Others gorged themselves with
unwholesome food, and died with it in their mouths. Fields lying waste;
villages dispeopled; private houses turned into hospitals; fever-parched
skeletons tottering from the doors of overcrowded asylums; children
wandering about in gaunt and squalid nakedness; crowds of men, frenzied
by prolonged misery and ripe for any outrage, roaming the streets night
and day,--such were the scenes enacted throughout the length of Finland
during two months and a half.

But better days are now dawning on the afflicted land. Roads and
railways are being pushed forward into the interior, and the ill-judged
attempts formerly made to Russianize the population have given place to
a more conciliatory policy. A Russian from Helsingfors tells me that
lectures are being delivered there, and extracts from native works read,
in the aboriginal tongue; that it is being treated with special
attention in the great schools of Southern Finland; that there has even
been some talk of dramatic representations in Finnish at the Helsingfors
theatre. Such a policy is at once prudent and generous, and far better
calculated to bind together the heterogeneous races of the empire than
that absurd "Panslavism" which is best translated as "making every one a
slave."

                                                  DAVID KER.

FOOTNOTES:

[D] Finland still retains its own currency of "marks" and "pennia."

[E] A fact.

[F] The statue of Peter the Great stands at the corner of the
Senate-House Square, overlooking the Neva, on a block of Finnish granite
twenty feet high.

[G] Since this was written two new lines have been opened.



OUR MONTHLY GOSSIP.


THE DEAD OF PARIS.

It is an expensive operation to die in Paris, particularly for a
foreigner. If an unhappy American chances to pay the debt of Nature in a
furnished apartment or a hotel, the proprietor makes the heirs of the
deceased pay roundly for the privilege which their relation has enjoyed.
No matter by what manner of death the departed may have made his or her
exit, be it chronic or epidemic--anything so impossible to communicate
as heart disease or apoplexy, for instance--every article in the room
must be paid for at its full value, or rather quadruple that amount. As
much as one thousand dollars has sometimes been charged for the
plenishing of a room, everything in which, if put up at auction, would
not have realized a tenth part of that amount. Through the efforts of
our representatives, however, this tax has been fixed at a somewhat less
exorbitant amount.

Parisian funerals are conducted by a company--which, like most of such
enterprises in France, is a gigantic monopoly--under the direct
supervision of the government. The tariff of its charges includes nine
grades of funerals, at prices ranging from fifteen hundred dollars down
to four dollars. For the first amount the mourners enjoy all the
splendors possible to the occasion--a hearse draped with velvet and
drawn by four horses, each decked with ostrich-plumes and led by a groom
clothed in a mourning livery; velvet draperies sprinkled with silver
tears for the porte-cochère wherein the coffin lies in state; and grand
funeral lamps lit with spirits to flame around the bier at the church.
For the last tariff a pine coffin painted black, a stretcher and two men
to bear the body to the _fosse commune_, are accorded. But between these
two extremes lies every variety of funeral that one can imagine, a very
respectable affair with two mourning carriages being offered for about
sixty dollars. Very few Americans are ever interred in a Paris cemetery,
the prejudices of our nation exacting that the remains of the dead
should be transferred to their native land. To the foreigner this
process appears to be inexplicable, for, as a French gentleman once
remarked to me with a shrug of his shoulders, "Only the Americans and
English are fond of making corpses travel" (_de faire voyager leurs
morts_). They generally prefer to call in the services of the embalmer,
who for a charge of six hundred dollars will do his work wisely if not
too well. Still, there are some graves of our fellow-citizens still
visible even at Père la Chaise. And at that historic cemetery for years
there existed a beautiful spot, a sort of hollow on the hillside, where
flowers, trees and grass all flourished luxuriantly, thanks to years of
neglect. It was a wild and lovely oasis of Nature in the midst of the
stiff, artificial formality of the rest of the cemetery, and became one
of the sights of the place. Unfortunately, French formality revolted
against the untamed charm of this neglected spot: the proprietor, an
American gentleman, was sought out, the lot was repurchased by the city,
the trees were uprooted, the hollow filled in, and the beautiful ravine
exists no longer.

The Compagnie des Pompes Funèbres is obliged to inter the poor
gratuitously; nor is this service light, as the number of free funerals
is considerably greater than that of paying ones. The city pays one
dollar to the company for each pauper funeral. The mass of material
possessed by the company is very great, comprising six hundred vehicles
of all kinds, three hundred horses, six thousand biers or stretchers,
and a vast number of draperies, cushions, torches, etc. Over five
hundred and seventy-five men are employed by this organization. Thanks
to these ample arrangements, the terrible spectacle afforded during the
cholera outbreaks of 1832 and 1849, when the dead were conveyed to the
cemeteries piled in upholsterers' wagons, is not likely to be renewed,
as during the exceptional mortality from the same cause in 1854 and 1865
the arrangements were found to suffice for all demands.

In olden times Paris was full of cemeteries: they were attached to every
hospital and every church. The wealthy were interred in the churches
themselves: in the church of Les Innocents, which was specially affected
by the nobility, the aisles were often crowded with coffins awaiting
their turn to be placed in the overcrowded vaults. Nobody troubled
himself about the sanitary side of the question in those days, as
witness the cemetery of Saint Roch, which in 1763 was established beside
one of the city wells. During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries
cemeteries were popular places of resort. Les Innocents was especially
popular: it was surrounded by arcades, where booths and stores were
established, and people came there to promenade and to amuse themselves.
Nor were private cemeteries unknown, many prominent Jewish and
Protestant families being privileged to inter their dead (to whom the
Church denied burial in consecrated ground) in the gardens attached to
their houses. Thus, when the work of reconstructing Paris under the
Second Empire was begun, the enormous quantity of graves that were
discovered filled the workers with amaze. The bones thus found were at
first transferred to the Western Cemetery, which had been closed for
over twenty years, but the accumulation speedily became unmanageable,
and when a mass of over three thousand square feet of bones had been
deposited there, a decree of the authorities caused the whole and all
similar discoveries to be deposited in the catacombs.

The Revolution did away with the greater part of the intramural
cemeteries by suppressing those attached to the churches and declaring
the ground to be national property: they were consequently parceled out
into lots and sold. But the guillotine created a need for new
burial-grounds, two of which were accordingly established. One, situated
near the Place du Trône, still exists: it occupies the former site of
the gardens of the Dames Chauvinesses de Picpus. After the Revolution it
was purchased by an association of the surviving members of families who
had relatives interred there. This cemetery ought to be a pilgrim shrine
for every American visiting Paris, for it was chosen as a last
resting-place for the remains of La Fayette. The other "garden of the
guillotine," as these cemeteries were once significantly called, has
long since disappeared, but the Chapelle Expiatoire erected to the
memory of Marie Antoinette and of Louis XVI. on the Boulevard Haussmann
now marks its former site. It was there that the bodies of these royal
victims of revolutionary fury were hastily interred in a bed of
quicklime, with a thick layer of quicklime cast over each of them. When,
after the Restoration, the task of exhuming the royal remains was
undertaken, crumbling bones alone remained to point out the
resting-place of the once beautiful daughter of the Cæsars and of the
descendant of Saint Louis. The smaller bones of the skeleton of Louis
XVI., in particular, had almost wholly disappeared: that of the queen
was in better preservation, owing to a smaller quantity of quicklime
having been used. Strange to say, her garters, which were of elastic
webbing, were found in a state of almost perfect preservation, while of
the rest of her garments only a few rotting fragments remained. These
garters, together with some pieces of the coffins, were presented as
precious relics to Louis XVIII. But grave doubts have frequently been
expressed, in view of the very slight means of identification afforded
by the state of the remains, as to whether these crumbling relics of
mortality were really those of the king and queen. With the exception of
the plot on which stands the Chapelle Expiatoire, every vestige of the
revolutionary cemetery has long since disappeared. The splendid
Boulevard Haussmann now passes directly over its site, and the gayety
and animation of one of the most brilliant quarters of modern Paris
surround what was once the last resting-place of those who perished by
the guillotine on the Place de la Révolution.

The present system of Parisian cemeteries was only adopted at the
beginning of this century. Paris now possesses twenty, the most
important of which are Père la Chaise and Montparnasse. The ground of
all of these belongs to the city. You can purchase a lot to be held for
ever, or you can buy a temporary concession, the price varying with the
length of time for which the ground is to be held. Five years is the
shortest period for which a lot can be accorded, as experts declare that
the body is not wholly absorbed into the surrounding earth before that
time.

What shall Paris do with her dead? is now becoming a very serious
question. It is against the law to bury bodies within her limits, yet
fourteen out of her twenty cemeteries are within her bounds, and the
vast city, spreading out on either side, soon catches up with those
established on her exterior territories.

It has been proposed to construct a new and immense cemetery at a
distance of some twenty or thirty miles from the city, to which the
funeral cortéges could be transferred by rail. But the strong sentiment
of the French for the dead has as yet prevented the realization of this
very sensible and really necessary project. As a rule, the French are
very fond of visiting the graves of their departed relatives, and on the
great anniversary for such visits, "Le Jour des Morts," it is calculated
that over half a million persons are present in the different cemeteries
during the day. On such occasions not only are wreaths of natural
flowers, of beads and of immortelles deposited on the tombs, but often
the visiting-cards of the persons who have come to pay due respect to
the dead. The tomb of Rachel, for instance, has been specially honored
in that way, some of the visitors even turning up the corner of the card
to show that they had called in person. The question suggests itself,
_What if the visit should be returned?_ Edgar A. Poe might have found in
this idea material for one of his weird and wondrous tales. We all know
what happened when Don Juan in merry fashion begged that the statue of
his former victim would come to take supper with him.

The French authorities have indeed purchased a vast tract of ground at
Méry-sur-Oise, distant from Paris about one hour by rail, with intent to
found there a vast central necropolis, but the prejudices or
indifference of the Parisian populace have as yet prevented the
realization of this project. Something must be done, however, and that
speedily. Were cremation an established fact, that would settle the
whole matter, but the French, who always seem to get an attack of piety
in the wrong place, are horrified at such an idea. It is probable,
therefore, that a law will be adopted, such as is now in force in
Switzerland, making all concessions of burial-lots merely temporary.
Such a law is already talked of, and the duration of the longest
concession is fixed at ten years. A regulation of this kind would of
course do away with much of the elegance of decoration that now
distinguishes the Parisian cemeteries, as few families would care to
erect costly monuments over a grave that must be vacated at the end of
ten years.

                                          L. H. H.


THE RELIGIOUS STRUGGLE AT GENEVA.

Even for a chance resident in Geneva, for a disinterested stranger to
the strife, the Ultramontane and Old Catholic question is no more to be
avoided than the _bise_ which blows in the month of November upon the
just and the unjust. You take the longest way round through the
sheltered streets, if you like, but the terrific north wind is certain
to catch you at the first square you cross. And you may say you have no
particular interest in the war of churches, and no adequate means of
forming a judgment: you still hear a good deal that is said, and read
much that is written, on the burning topic. If a supporter of the ruling
party describes what occurred some months since at Bellerive on the
lake shore, when a company of gendarmes marched into the village, took
possession of the church, set the Swiss cross floating from the steeple
and established the new _curé_ by force of arms, in place of the
Ultramontane incumbent, who had long defied the cantonal authorities and
remained at his post in spite of reiterated orders to depart, the
impression you receive is that of the might and majesty of the law
triumphant. What else can be done, they ask, when the government of the
land is flouted in open scorn? What, indeed? And the counter-display of
banners by the vanquished party on that eventful day illustrated, it
would appear, the well-known step from the sublime to the ridiculous.
Every black rag on which they could lay hands dangled from the windows
of the faithful in sign of distress: not even a petticoat rather the
worse for wear but did duty on the occasion. And yet one thoroughly
convinced of the puerility of such demonstrations may also think that
the Swiss flag itself has been unfurled in causes more glorious.

"The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church," say the
persecuted. "Where the government has put in an apostate priest, he
celebrates mass to empty benches: we set up our altar in a barn, and it
is full to overflowing." So far as this city is concerned, the statement
is correct. The place of worship to which the Ultramontanes retired when
driven from the cathedral of Notre Dame may, if they choose, be called a
barn--a large one--and it is furnished with a goodly congregation,
whereas the forty or fifty persons who assemble in their former church
look no more than "a handful of corn upon the mountains." It must be
admitted also that in sowing after the manner of the martyrs the
Ultramontanes are ready and willing, and should the official rigors be
insufficient they will perhaps do a little private bloodletting for the
sake of contributing handsomely to the support of their cause. The
Sisters of Charity, expelled from Geneva last year as exercising a
pernicious influence, are said to have opened all their veins before
they went. Excepting that blood, however, it is not apparent that they
lost a great deal: they merely crossed the boundary into France, can
revisit the scene of their martyrdom whenever they please, and moreover,
in their present quality of strangers, the government has lost the right
of interference with their apparel, so that the stiff white bonnets may
now walk with impunity under the very nose of a _conseiller d'état_. The
inhabitants of the canton are severely restricted as to costume under
the present régime. No native priest is permitted a distinctive dress,
and where a couple of large hats and long skirts are seen strolling
through the streets, you know they are from over the border. Jesuitism
is not to parade in full uniform, nor is it to lurk privily under never
so humble a roof. In their struggles with the hydra-headed monster the
men in the high places of this canton found themselves lately face to
face with an odd set of opponents. An association of servant-girls,
animated by the spirit of party, had stepped into the vacant quarters of
the Sisters--a locality already confiscated by the government. The
object of the society is praiseworthy: it provides a home for servants
out of place, and nurses and maintains such as are sick or destitute.
Still, the powers that be thought such Christian charity might be
exercised as well elsewhere, and sent a notice to quit, of which the
domestics, with a traditional contempt for lawful authority, made no
account whatever. They were threatened with the police, but still stood
firm, and not until an armed force actually descended upon them did they
retire in good order, bearing one of their company on a mattress. Those
interested in their behalf call attention to the fact that the sick
person had to be transported through the streets on the coldest day of
the season, while the party of the gendarmerie cause it to be understood
that said person only took to her bed when the judicial knock sounded at
the door.

Scandalous wrangling, petty bickering, the zealous wrath of true
conviction on either side,--there is room for them all in a contest like
this, where every one must wear the badge of party in plain sight, and
defend it as best he may, but defend it at all costs. To stand between
two such hostile forces is to be regarded as an enemy by both, and is a
situation that may seem equivocal even to lookers-on. Yet those who
listen habitually to the one man who has chosen that unenviable post can
hardly complain of want of clearness in his own defining of his
position. Père Hyacinthe is sometimes held to be on the high road to
Protestantism. Any one who went out in the middle of some discourse of
his, and so heard only the warm-hearted, candid confession of sympathy
with all that is excellent among heretics, might carry away such an
impression: those who remain until the inevitable "_mais_" with which
the second proposition begins are convinced that to grasp the hand he
holds out for Church unity the Protestants would have many more steps to
take than he contemplates on his side, and that the meeting could by no
means be a halfway one. Another numerously-supported opinion is that of
his waiting only for a good opportunity to return to the true fold.
Certain it is that at all times and in all places he calls himself a
faithful son of that Church of which, as he ceases not to reiterate, he
has never sought the ruin, but the reform. Who, however, hearing the
scathing apostrophe that follows to the address of the misguided old man
who holds the keys of St. Peter can feel that this son of Rome, devoted
though he be, is very ready to sue for pardon? On the contrary, let the
shepherd repent, then the wandering sheep may come back to the flock. A
weightier charge against him than any other is that of betraying party,
of faithlessly turning his back on the cause he once espoused. But that
cause is still his, as he declares: no one has more at heart the success
of the Old Catholic movement than he, no one a warmer desire to see the
purified Church in the place that is hers of right; but also no one has
a deeper abhorrence of that Church lending herself as a servant to
political intrigues, be the government that sets them on foot called
despotic or republican. And then the Grand Conseil comes in for no
little scorn and contempt. Père Hyacinthe may be a Jesuit in disguise,
or a Calvinist at heart, or a broken reed that pierces the hand of him
who leans on it; but there is still another hypothesis: he may be a man
endowed with the rare gift of seeing all sides of a question with equal
impartiality, and one not to be deterred by any party considerations
from speaking his free opinion: in that case it is certain that he would
find no place in either of the factions at variance in this
commonwealth.

How large the number of those who followed Père Hyacinthe when he took
up his present isolated position it would be difficult to estimate, for
the services at the Casino are attended by others besides his own flock;
Sunday after Sunday the barren concert-hall is filled, but many faces
wear an expectant look that distinguishes them as passing strangers from
the frequenters of the place; and when the mass begins there is evident
doubt in the minds of some how far loyalty to their own simpler forms
permits them to unite in this worship. They solve the question by
standing up whenever a change of position seems to be called for; and in
fact to kneel in the narrow, crowded seats is almost impossible, so that
the front row, with more space at its disposal, may be properly expected
to act as proxy for all the rest. There comes a moment, however, that
unites Catholic and Protestant under one spell: it is when the first
word falls from the lips of the great speaker. Whatever the subject,
whether Catholic reform or the state of the soul after death, a
breathless stillness bears witness to enchained attention. Such a theme
as the latter must lead far from the daily ways of thought that many
tread who listen: when the silver tongue ceases, one may murmur to
another, "Mystical!" and yet a very untranscendental mind, borne upward
for the moment by that wondrous eloquence, might well catch some vision
of a mysterious bond between the Church militant and the Church
triumphant--might all but feel a tie linking that strangely-mingled
assemblage with the Blessed Company of All Saints.

                                          G. H. P.


THE COMING ELECTIONS IN FRANCE.

The crisis brought about in France by Marshal MacMahon's _coup de
palais_ of May 16, 1877, has thrown the country just four years back.
Circumstances widely different in character from those which caused the
overthrow of M. Thiers on May 24, 1873, have once more placed the
government in the hands of men of whom the Republic might well have
thought itself for ever rid. At that time the blow was struck by a
parliamentary majority. This time it is the representative of the
executive power who has thought fit to interfere, seeking to substitute
an authoritative for a parliamentary government. When MacMahon assumed
power he declared that his post was that of "a sentinel who has to watch
over the integrity of your sovereign powers;" but it would appear as
though the recollection of his own earlier career, his clerical
associations and other secret influences at work, had made him ambitious
to occupy a higher position. From the post of sentinel he leaps to that
of generalissimo; and there can be little doubt as to the cause which
the transition is intended to serve.

There is no longer anything to fear from the Legitimists: the
death-knell of that party was rung by the Count de Chambord's famous
letter of October 30, 1873, declaring his continued adherence to Bourbon
principles. Nor is aught to be apprehended from the Orleanists.
They--the Centre-Right in the two houses--long hesitated whether to cast
in their lot with the Republic, which would annihilate them by
absorption with the Centre-Left, or to join the ranks of the so-called
Conservatives, who are undoubtedly destined to swamp them in the stream
of imperialism. After much swaying to and fro they have, it would seem,
at length determined to follow their usual party tactics and go over
bodily to the side which appears to them to present the least immediate
danger--viz., the Imperialist. There is no disguising the matter. The
battle this time will be between the Republicans and the Bonapartists.
M. Gambetta, in the course of his eloquent speech of May 4, 1877,
cried, "Le cléricalisme, voilà l'ennemi." Powerful, however, as is the
clerical party to embarrass, it is not strong enough at the urns to
over-turn the Republic. Imperialism alone can hope to do that when,
arrayed in fight against the present form of government, it seeks to win
over to its side the country population, those six million electors for
the most part owners of the soil they till, and on whose decision hinges
to a large extent the future of France. These _paysans_ will vote for
one of two things--the Republic or the Empire, the marshal-president
before the 16th of May, or the marshal-president who "belongs to the
Right."

In France this is, in some degree at least, understood, and even now
each party is mustering all its forces so as to be prepared for the
October elections. The Republicans are already well organized, with
their committees and sub-committees awaiting the instructions of their
leader. They will proceed to the polls encouraged by their success at
the last elections, taking credit for the tranquil state of France up to
the 16th of May, 1877, setting forth their moderation when in power, the
guarantees they have given for the maintenance of order, and the almost
unanimous approbation their conduct of affairs has met with at the hands
of the foreign press.

The Bonapartists will put on their panoply of battle, strong in the
support of the marshal, his prefects, his mayors and the cohorts of
inferior appointees, such as the gendarmes, the rural constabulary, and
all that powerful mechanism at the disposal of a government which sets
up official candidates with the avowed intention of carrying the
elections by the almost irresistible force of French centralization. All
who have seen in motion that formidable political machine called a
French prefecture know what this implies. It will be recollected that
nearly all the prefects have been changed since the 16th of May. The
prefect is appointed by the Minister of the Interior, and receives from
him every day by telegraph the word of command, while the post brings
him official circulars. These orders he in turn communicates to his
subordinates, the mayors. The mayors are, it is true, not all appointed
by the prefects, those in the rural districts being elected by the town
councils. Nevertheless, they are all more or less under the thumb of the
prefects. They need the prefect's signature almost every day to stamp
some official act; they require government grants for the maintenance of
schools, roads and other purposes in their communes; they dare not
offend the prefects, under penalty of having men appointed as rural
constables, mayors' secretaries and letter-carriers who shall be so many
enemies of the mayors and shall thwart them at every step. The prefect
thus exercises enormous influence in every commune, both over the mayor
and the lower class of appointees. He likewise holds in subjection in
the various districts the justices of the peace, whose appointments can
be revoked at will should they vote against orders or fail to use their
influence on behalf of the official candidate. The prefect also reigns
supreme over the brigades of foot and mounted gendarmerie scattered
throughout his department. Of course, the gendarmes do not follow a man
to the poll to see that he votes to order, but both the gendarmes and
the rural constables understand that they are to act as gently toward
the liquor-sellers who vote as they are bidden as they are to proceed
rigorously against those who contend for the right of private judgment.
If the latter get into trouble, they must be made an example of, whereas
should the supporters of the official candidates have broken the law,
matters may easily be arranged. Besides these instruments, the prefect
has his newspaper, containing articles carefully prepared beforehand at
Paris, which he has distributed gratuitously among the electors during
the whole of the campaign. This newspaper enjoys the patronage of the
judicial and official advertisements, for the insertion of which,
American readers need scarcely be told, it receives very handsome pay.
Even the post-office is made to join in the conspiracy against the
opposition candidate, and it is no rare occurrence for the newspapers
and the voting tickets issued by the anti-official party to be held back
at the post-office until the day after the election.

All these means, and others besides, are used to intimidate the country
population. The strength of the administration is paraded before them. A
great show of energy--or, to use the expressive French word, _de
poigne_--is made. This is done in order that the French peasant,
instinctively attracted by a display of power and repelled by an
exhibition of weakness, may cast his vote for the man who appears to be
the stronger candidate, and who enjoys the friendship of Monsieur le
Préfet.

In February, 1876, M. Buffet, then Minister of the Interior, only
employed the means above described sparingly and stealthily. The favor
with which he viewed the aspirations of the clerical party caused him to
allow the Bonapartist machine to get somewhat rusty. In October, 1877,
M. de Fourtou, the Bonapartist Minister of the Interior, selected by the
marshal and his advisers as the fittest for the post, will, we may rest
assured, make ample use of the levers of administrative centralization.
His past career furnishes evidence that he will not hesitate an instant
to declare as the official nominee, and energetically to support, any
anti-Republican candidate having the least chance of success. Under such
circumstances in almost every electoral district in the north, centre
and west of France there will be a Bonapartist candidate. The situation
insensibly recalls Dryden's well-known lines:

    To further this, Achitophel unites
    The malcontents of all the Israelites,
    Whose differing parties he could wisely join
    For several ends to serve the same design.

Even in 1876, when they were left to their own resources, the
Imperialists were able to carry the election of about a hundred of their
adherents. Now, with one of their own party as the leading wire-puller,
and with the aid of the not over-scrupulous _préfets à poigne_--who have
scarcely forgotten the instruction they received during Napoleon's
reign--the Imperialists will not despair of getting another one hundred
and fifty, perhaps even two hundred, members into the Chamber.

                                          C. H. H.


VON MOLTKE IN TURKEY.

Artemus Ward, giving his reasons for approving of G. Washington, adduced
the pleasing fact that "George never slopped over." Had that king of
jokers ever uttered a "sparkling remark" about H. von Moltke (as we may
be sure he would have done if he had lived until now), it would most
probably have conveyed a very similar idea in equally scintillating
language. It is currently reported of the last-named gentleman that he
"keeps silence in seven languages." Like the great William of Orange, he
is popularly nicknamed in his own country "the silent man" (_der
Schweiger_). Perhaps this habitual reticence is one reason why his
utterances are received--when he speaks at all--by his countrymen
generally with such deep respect and interest; for even the all-powerful
Bismarck cannot command, among Germans, a stricter attention to his
speeches. And with regard to military subjects at least, it is natural
that the rest of the world should not be altogether indifferent to what
the famous strategist may have to say.

But this ability to refrain from utterance did not, at an earlier period
of his life, prevent his doing what is traditionally asserted to gratify
a man's enemies; and patriotic Frenchmen ought to be glad to know that
he once wrote a book. Indeed, he has written more than one, but there is
one of his productions which is now attracting a great deal of
attention. This work is entitled "_Letters on the State of, and Events
in, Turkey, from 1835 to 1839_. By Helmuth von Moltke, Captain on the
General Staff, afterward General and Field-marshal." At least this is
the title under which the book has lately been republished at Berlin.
The original designation was a little less overpowering, but quite huge
enough, apparently, to smother the young literary effort; for it died
quickly, and though some forty years have passed since the first edition
appeared (with a warm recommendation from the eminent geographer Karl
Ritter), yet the one just issued is only the second. It is now preceded
by a short introduction written for the publishers at their urgent
request; and no more widely-popular book has appeared in Germany for
many years. The people take a vast amount of pleasure in reading the
descriptions of their staid, soldierly old field-marshal attired in
Oriental garb and figuring among scenes which might have been taken from
the _Arabian Nights_.

But, aside from any personal considerations, the book is really a very
interesting and valuable one, and unquestionably deserved a better fate
than that which overtook it at first. And now that everything connected
with Turkey possesses a special interest for the world at large, it will
well repay a careful perusal.

"Captain" von Moltke went to Turkey in the thirty-fifth year of his age,
and at a time when the public interest in that country was hardly less
active than it has been lately. The war of 1828 and 1829, and Sultan
Mahmud II.'s energetic action in fighting his foes and undertaking vast
internal reforms, had caused the attention of the world to be
concentrated upon his affairs. The young German staff-officer intended
spending only a few weeks in the Ottoman empire. But the sultan was
anxious to avail himself of the services of just such men, and the offer
of an appointment as _musteschar_ ("imperial councilor") was too
tempting for Von Moltke to refuse. Installed in his office, he soon made
his value apparent to both the sultan and Chosrew Pasha, the seraskier,
who was in high favor at court, and in a short time a vast number and
variety of duties were assigned to him. Was a difficult bridge-building
project to be carried out, he was the man to make it a success; did the
sultan's palace need to have another tower perched upon it, he must
direct the work: in fact, it seemed to be the prevailing impression that
the advice and assistance of "Moltke Pasha" were good things to have in
any situation.

His good standing in high government circles made him much sought after
by Turkish subordinate officials, who hoped to make use of his interest
to their own advantage. According to the common custom in that part of
the world, they sent him presents in great numbers. Horses enough were
given to him to mount a whole company of cavalry, and not unfrequently
also these propitiatory offerings took the form of hard cash. He asserts
that any hesitation about accepting these donations would merely have
convinced the givers that he thought them too small; and he was
therefore obliged to resort to the expedient of dividing them among his
servants and employés. These proceedings won for him the honorable
distinction of being considered _delih_, which may be translated by the
popular expression "cracked." Among other delicate attentions offered to
him as a stranger was the infliction of the bastinado upon certain
criminals in his presence and with a view to his gratification. Certain
Greeks, who were thus made to take a very important part in getting the
entertainment to the foreigner _on foot_, were considerately allowed a
very liberal reduction in the number of blows they were to receive,
which was only twenty-five hundred!

But, in addition to such diversions, Von Moltke's experiences in Turkey
included many opportunities to become thoroughly acquainted with the
face of the country and the characteristics of the various races
inhabiting it. He accompanied the sultan during an extensive tour made
by the latter among the Christian provinces, and gives an interesting
account of the journey. At another time he was sent to Syria, where the
royal forces were operating against Ibrahim Pasha, and here it was that
the future great general went through his first campaign. That it ended
in a most disastrous defeat for the side upon which he was enlisted does
not seem to have been due to any want of energy on his part. Soon after
this he gave up his post under the Turkish government and returned to
his native land.

                                          W. W. C.


PUNCHING THE DRINKS.

The latest move upon John Barleycorn's works is engineered by the
legislative wisdom of the Old Dominion. It consists in a bell-punch on
the model, embalmed already in poetry, of the implement which forms the
most conspicuous feature of the street-car conductor's outfit. The
disappearance of each drink is to be announced to all within hearing by
a sprightly peal on a kind of joy-bell Edgar A. Poe lived too soon to
include in his tintinnabulatory verses. The chimes vary in intensity and
glee according to the magnitude of the event they at once celebrate and
record. Lager elicits but a modest jingle, whisky unadorned is honored
with a louder greeting, and the arrival of an artistic cobbler at the
seat of thirst is the signal for a triple bob-major of the most
brilliant vivacity. On a court day, an election day or a circus day the
air will vibrate to the incessant and inspiriting clangor; and as in one
part or another of the Commonwealth one at least of those festivals so
dear to freemen is in blast always, the din will be ended only by
midnight, resounding over her whole surface from daylight to the
witching hour.

J.B.'s assailants, and their modes of attack, are innumerable. Every
foot of his enceinte is scarred with the dint of siege, and from every
battlement "the flight of baffled foes" he has "watched along the
plain." Sap and storm have alike failed to bring down his rosy colors.
Father Mathew, Gough, the Sons of Temperance, the Straight-Outs,--where
are they? He stands intact and defiant. Should he surrender, it will be
a wondrous triumph, and all the more so for the simplicity of the means.
The marvel will be, as with Columbus and the egg, why everybody did not
think of it long ago.

The way once opened, all will flock in. Divines, statesmen, moralists
and financiers will all strike for the new placer. The moral reformers
will brandish aloft the tinkling weapon, enthusiastic in their
determination to use it to the utmost and bring down tippling to a
minimum. Lawmakers and tax-gatherers will rejoice over a new and fertile
source of revenue, and pile upon it impost on impost, secure of the
approval of the most grumbling of tax-payers. To the new fiscal and
moral California all will flock.

The extent of the revolution is as little to be estimated in advance as
was that caused by Columbus's voyage. Strong drink pervades all
civilized lands. It is a universal element, the elimination of which
must produce changes impossible to be calculated or foreseen. Should the
grand moral results anticipated follow, the difference between civilized
man and his sober savage fellow will be widened. Progress will no longer
be handicapped, and will press forward with accelerated speed. Its path
will cease to be strewn with broken fortunes, happiness and bottles.
Policemen and criminal courts will lose, according to standard
statistics, four-fifths of their occupation. In that proportion the
cause of virtue will gain. Mankind will be four hundred per cent. more
honest and peaceable than before the passage of the whisky-punch bill.
With the public treasury full, and the detective, the juryman and the
shyster existent only in a fossil state, the millennium will have been,
as the phrase runs, discounted.

But we run foul of the inevitable and inexorable _If_. Is the machine
invented that is to do such work? Is it within the reach of any
combination of springs, ratchets and clappers? Is the leviathan of
strong drink to be hooked after that fashion--a bit put in his mouth and
the monster made to draw the car of state? We shall see. The end would
justify much more ponderous and hazardous means, and the chance is worth
taking. Independent of the general blessing to mankind involved in the
punch idea, Virginia proposes in it a special benefit to herself; and
that of course is her chief motive. States so very much in debt as she
is are not prone to quixotic philanthropy. Should this novel form of
taxation assist in paying the interest on her bonds, she will patiently
wait for the secondary, if broader, good accruing to the world at large.
Men, she argues, who are able to indulge in stimulants are able to pay
their debts, and at least their share of the public debt. Each click of
the bell proclaims her adoption of this theory, and at the same time her
anxiety to find some means of satisfying her creditors. If she can
cancel at once her bonds and Barleycorn, so much the better.

                                          E. B.


THE NAUTCH-DANCERS OF INDIA.

The Prince of Wales was severely censured by some of the English
journals for dignifying by his presence the nautch-dancing of India.
These performances are peculiar to the country and its religion, and
constitute so important a part of the marvels of the East that few male
travelers at least fail to witness them. Probably the prince saw no good
reason why he should forego any of the benefits of sightseeing
vouchsafed to the ordinary traveler. Dancing has always been an
important feature of the ceremonial worship of most Oriental peoples.
Every temple of note in India has attached to it a troop of
nautch-dancers. According to Mr. Sellen, the author of _Annotations of
the Sacred Writing's of the Hindus_ (London, 1865), these young girls
are "early initiated into all the mysteries of their profession. They
are instructed in dancing and vocal and instrumental music, their chief
employment being to chant the sacred hymns and perform nautches before
their god on the recurrence of high festivals." One of the English
papers declared that "witnessing the physical contortions of half-nude
prostitutes" was hardly a commendable amusement in the future sovereign
of Great Britain. But this is hardly just. Vile as the calling of the
nautch-women may be--and one of their duties is to raise funds for the
aggrandizement of the temple to which they are attached by selling
themselves in its courts--it does not degrade like ordinary prostitution
where all society shuns and abhors its votary. In India both priest and
layman respect the calling of the nautch-girls as one advancing the
cause of religion. It is possible, therefore, to see that their moral
nature is, in a sense, sustained by self-respect. "Being always women of
more or less personal attractions, which are enhanced," says the same
author, "by all the seductions of dress, jewels, accomplishments and
art, they frequently receive large sums for the favors they grant, and
fifty, one hundred, and even two hundred, rupees have been known to be
paid to these sirens at one time." Nor is this very much to be wondered
at if it be true that they comprise among their number "some of the
loveliest women in the world."

                                          M. H.



LITERATURE OF THE DAY.


     The Two Americas: An Account of Sport and Travel, with Notes
     on Men and Manners, in North and South America. By Major Sir
     Rose Lambart Price, Bart. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott &
     Co.

It would hardly be inferred from such a title that the duodecimo in
large print which assumes to discuss the New World is occupied with the
diary of a tour in a gunboat from Rio de Janeiro through Magellan's
Straits and up the west coast of South America to San Diego, and thence
by stage and railway to San Francisco, Salt Lake and Chicago. An
exploration of this character could not be exhaustive, and the
successors of the gallant major will find an abundance of matter left in
the twin continents for much larger books with much smaller titles.

It must be said, in justice to the writer, that the pretentiousness of
his book is only skin-deep. It "thunders in the index," but disappears
after the front page. He makes no claim to profundity, and is satisfied
to be an authority among Nimrods rather than with statesmen and
philosophers. The rod and gun suit his hand better than the pen, and he
takes not the least trouble to disguise the fact. Style is the very
least of his cares: we should almost judge, indeed, that he likes to
parade his contempt for it. The pronoun _who_ he constantly applies to
animals, from a sheep to a shellfish. Of the Uruguayan thistles he
notes: "The abundance of this weed was quite surprising, and consisted
chiefly of two kinds." The gentleman of color he invariably mentions as
a _nigger_--a word as strange to ears polite in America, and perhaps as
natural to them in England, as _nasty_. He plucks at Sir G. Wolseley's
laurels won in "licking a few miserable niggers in Ashantee."

But literary vanities can be despised by a man who drops a prong-horned
antelope at one thousand and ninety yards; overtakes by swimming, and
captures, a turtle in mid-ocean; finishes with a single ball a grizzly
_who_ had put to flight the settlers of half a county in Idaho; stalks a
guanaco in Patagonia nine feet high to the top of the head; and catches
in one day's fishing, "the only day I really worked hard, twenty-seven
California salmon, weighing three hundred and twenty-four pounds." The
majesty of the facts utterly overshadows any little blemishes in the
method of stating them. Truth so grand might well afford to present
itself quite naked, as Truth poetically does--much more somewhat
defective in the cut of its garments.

Sir Rose Price is a cosmopolitan sportsman, having hunted the jungles of
India, the swamps of Eastern Africa and China, the fjelds of Norway, and
most other fields of "mimic war." As usual with persons of that taste,
he enjoys perfect health, and, like most persons who know that great
blessing, he is full of bonhommie and looks on the rosy side of things.
Mosquitoes he dislikes: he denounces also the modern Peruvians. But his
chief bitterness is reserved for the unhappy gunboat, the Rocket, which
took eight months to get him to San Diego, and spent half an hour in
turning round. Whether or not that particular segment of England's
wooden walls was built in the eclipse, no reader of Sir Rose's book will
doubt that she is rigged with curses dark. When he leaves her a cloud
seems to be lifted from his soul. Everything thereafter is delightful,
if we except the climate of San Francisco, which he abominates as windy
and extreme in its daily changes, and the social system which prevails
under Brigham Young. The "big trees" transport him; the California
stage-drivers are unapproachable in the world; the officers of the
United States army treat him with the most assiduous and unvaried
courtesy and hospitality; the ladies of both coasts of the United
States are unrivaled for beauty; and "the more one sees of America, both
of people and country, the better one likes both." He sums up in the
following climax: "Should any visit America after reading these lines,
let me advise them to pay particular attention to three subjects--_i.
e._, canvas-back ducks, terrapin and madeira. This to the uninitiated is
a hint worth remembering." The last word, we take it, refers to the wine
of that name, which we had thought was still in process of very slow
recovery from the eclipse of twenty-five years ago. The major, however,
knows wine, and speaks impartially of it. The wines of California he
damns unreservedly: the Californians themselves, he says, never drink
them.

Sir Rose Price became intimate with the brave and unfortunate Custer. He
was to have joined that officer on the expedition which terminated so
fatally. His "traps were packed" and he was ready to start, when, as he
states it, a singular train of untoward events interposed and saved his
scalp. Secretary Belknap was impeached--General Custer was summoned to
Washington and gave testimony unfavorable to the accused. General
Grant's alleged disgust thereat caused Custer to be deprived of
independent command and the power of appointing a staff. Hence _The Two
Americas_ and one scalp less at the belt of Sitting Bull.


     Bryan Waller Procter (Barry Cornwall): An Autobiographical
     Fragment and Biographical Notes; with Personal Sketches of
     Contemporaries, Unpublished Lyrics, and Letters of Literary
     Friends. Boston: Roberts Brothers.

Neither the biographer nor the critic finds it easy to get a good grip
on a personal or literary career so little marked by salient features as
that of Procter. The lives of few individuals have rolled on more evenly
than his did for the round eighty years which made its term. Not of high
or of low birth, rich or poor, feeble or vigorous in health, a man of
the world or a recluse, ardent or cold in emotions, his figure is
strangely wanting in light and shade. As a poet and a thinker his
character is equally evasive. His verse can rarely be pronounced
decidedly feeble or commonplace, and never lofty or thrilling. He will
be remembered by two or three short poems tender in fancy and soft in
finish. Inquirers who are tempted by these to explore the rest of his
productions will find them readable, but not memorable, and will wonder
at learning that a tragedy of Procter's attained a success on the London
stage denied to either of Tennyson's.

The poet will go down to posterity under an assumed name, that under
which he was almost exclusively known to readers of his own day. Thus
buried under an anonym, and gravitating at all points toward mediocrity,
it is odd that so much interest should centre in his life and works as
we actually find to exist. This interest may be mainly ascribed to his
surroundings. Like Rogers, he shines by reflected light. He numbered
among his friends or acquaintances, in varied shades of intimacy, almost
every celebrity in British literature during two generations. To these
were added leading representatives of the fine arts, music and the
drama--Mendelssohn, Lawrence, Landseer, Turner, the Kembles, Edmund
Kean. It was a notable visiting-list that embraced all the Lake school,
Byron, Dickens, Thackeray, the two Lyttons, Scott, Sydney Smith and a
number of others as incongruous in time and tenets. Good taste,
amiability, the means and disposition to entertain, would have sufficed,
with the aid of less of intellectual and imaginative power than Procter
possessed, to keep him in good companionship with men like these, who
felt the need of a common professional rallying-point in the metropolis.
He avoided collision with any of their crotchets and idiosyncrasies. His
antipathies were few, and what he had he was generally successful in
repressing. De Quincey seems to have been lowest in his estimation. The
genial Elia and the fiery Hazlitt divided his especial and lasting
attachment.

Procter was always haunted by the very natural impression that he owed
to the world some use of the opportunities afforded him for the study of
mind and character by such a concourse of leading men. But he failed to
make even a move toward the discharge of that task until a short time
before the close of his life. The results, slight as they are, form
perhaps the most interesting section of the book before us. It embraces
short notices of Byron, Rogers, Crabbe, the three chief Lakers, Leigh
Hunt, Hazlitt, Carlyle, Haydon, Campbell, Moore and a few others.
Coleridge, we are told, had a "prodigious amount of miscellaneous
reading" always at command, and forgot everything in the pleasure of
hearing himself talk when he could secure an audience. Wordsworth's
poverty at one period of his life is illustrated by his having been met
emerging from a wood with a quantity of hazelnuts which he had gathered
to eke out the scanty dinner of his family. Doubtless he had collected
finer things than nuts, if less available for material sustenance.
Wordsworth, breakfasting with Rogers, excused his being late by saying
he had been detained by one of Coleridge's long monologues. He had
called so early on Coleridge, he explained, because he was to dine with
him that evening. "And," said Rogers, "you wanted to draw the sting out
of him beforehand." Campbell was in society cautious, stiff and precise,
like much of his verse, but was subject to occasional outbreaks,
analogous to the "Battle of the Baltic" and "Ye Mariners of England."
Crabbe resembled Moore in his passion for lords. Walter Scott was big,
broad, easy and self-poised, like one of his own historical novels. He
impressed Procter more than any of the rest as great, and consciously
great. Leigh Hunt was "essentially a gentleman;" he "treated all people
fairly, yet seldom or never looked up to any one with much respect;" and
"his mind was feminine rather than manly, without intending to speak
disrespectfully of his intellect."

Part IV. of the book is devoted to selections from letters written to
Procter. Jeffrey, Byron, Carlyle and Beddoes are the chief
correspondents quoted. Those from Byron are strongly Byronesque, but
give us no new points, unless in the high moral tone he assumes in
defending _Don Juan_. That poem does, he avers, no injustice to the
English aristocracy, which he maintains to have been at that time the
most profligate in Europe. The prominent details of the queen's trial
and others like it would "in no other country have been _publicly_
tolerated a moment." Was it Byron's theory, then, that all kinds of
morality are merely relative, and the outgrowth of local conditions?

The materials at the command of the editor of this book were obviously
very meagre. Yet it has undoubted value. If neither a corner-stone, a
voussoir nor a capital, it has at least its place in the edifice which
forms the literary history of the nineteenth century. Beyond that value
it has merit as the simple record of a life enriched by the charms of
poetry and elegant taste and the social and domestic charities.


     Turkey. By James Baker, M.A., Lieutenant-Colonel Auxiliary
     Forces, formerly Eighth Hussars. New York: Henry Holt & Co.

The announcement of this book as "a companion volume to Wallace's
_Russia_" provokes a comparison greatly to its disadvantage. The
qualities most conspicuous in Mr. Wallace's work, thoroughness of
exposition, skillful arrangement, breadth of view and mastery of
details, are wholly wanting in Colonel Baker's _Turkey_. The information
which it gives from the author's personal observation is fragmentary and
disappointing; the matter gleaned from other sources is chiefly
surplusage; the expressions of opinion indicate positiveness rather than
keen insight or impartial judgment; and, what renders the contrast still
more striking, the book as evidently owes its dimensions, if not its
existence, to the immediate interest of the subject as Mr. Wallace's
work was the slowly-ripened fruit of long and patient study, and its
opportune appearance a fortuitous advantage that added little to its
attractiveness. It is, however, no ground for condemning a book that it
has been written to supply information for which there is a present
demand; and if Colonel Baker had confined himself to telling us what he
knew, and his publishers had refrained from exciting undue expectations,
the contribution might have been accepted thankfully for what it was
worth, without special complaint in regard to its deficiencies. About
half the book is readable, and this includes some portions which,
besides being interesting, derive a special value from the author's
qualifications for speaking authoritatively on the points discussed in
them. He traveled somewhat extensively in Bulgaria; he purchased and
cultivated an estate in the neighborhood of Salonica, and was thus
brought into those relations of landlord, employer and taxpayer which
entail a certain familiarity with the workings of the administrative
machinery and with the habits and feelings of the rural population; and,
finally, as a soldier, he writes with full comprehension and
intelligence on the military resources of the country and the prospects
of the war which was seen to be inevitable when his book went to press.
In reference to the last point, he even sketches a plan of defence which
it seems not improbable may be that which the government will adopt, if
its own collapse or the intervention of other powers does not bring the
struggle to a speedier termination or an unforeseen issue. He considers
the Danube with its defences as offering no obstacle of importance to
the overwhelming forces preparing to cross it. The Balkan affords
numerous passes which may be traversed at all seasons except in the
depth of winter, and no points of defence that may not easily be turned.
But after crossing this range the Russians will be more than three
hundred miles from their base, and all their supplies will have to be
brought over the mountains. Their numbers will have been so diminished
by sickness and by the large detachments necessary for masking the
fortresses in their rear, that out of the four hundred thousand with
which Colonel Baker supposes them to open the campaign, they cannot be
expected to operate with more than one hundred thousand south of the
Balkan. They will still have a difficult country before them, and from
Burgas, on the Black Sea, where Colonel Baker proposes the establishment
of an entrenched camp, to be constantly supplied and reinforced by
water-transport from Constantinople, their flanks may be harassed and
their communications threatened, making it impossible for them to march
on Adrianople before ridding themselves of this danger. "It may be
argued," says Colonel Baker, "that this plan of defence would be giving
over a large portion of the empire to Russian occupation, but the answer
is, that Turkey, being in command of the Black Sea, could strangle all
Russian commerce in those waters until that power released her grip of
the Ottoman throat." But whatever be the merit or the feasibility of
this plan, it presupposes not only a design on the part of Russia to
advance upon Constantinople, which is doubtful, but a degree of energy
in the Turkish government and military commanders which it is almost
certain does not exist. The Ottoman power is to all appearance perishing
of inanition, and the mere hastening of its dissolution through external
shocks is not to be deprecated. But it is puerile to imagine that this
will be the only or chief result of the war now going on, if not
arrested by intervention in one form or another. In the delicate and
complicated relations of the European states the dismemberment of one
empire and the aggrandizement of another are not such changes as can
occur without affecting the whole system, and that harmony of action
which it was found impossible to secure as a means of averting war is
not likely to show itself when some decisive catastrophe shall have
developed the possibilities to be hoped or apprehended, brought
conflicting interests into play and suggested new combinations. Whether
a different course, with joint action, on the part of the powers that
now affect neutrality would have led to a more satisfactory result, is
itself a mere matter of speculation; but out of England few persons will
be disposed to agree with Colonel Baker in putting on Russia the whole
responsibility both of the war and of the events which are pleaded as
the justification of it. While conceding the corruption, apathy and
general incompetence of the Turkish government, he contends that
oppression is the exception, not the rule, that the chief mischiefs have
sprung directly from Russian intrigue, that the country has been making
rapid progress in many ways, and that time alone might safely have been
trusted to bring about all desirable reforms. So far as the general
condition of the people is concerned, his statements are entitled to
weight. But beyond the limits of his own experience his boldness in
assertion will not incline the reader to accept him as a safe guide. His
book would have left a far more favorable impression had he confined
himself to the description of what he saw and the relation of his own
adventures, leaving Turkish history and political speculations to
writers of a different class.



_Books Received._


The Music Reader; or, The Practice and Principles of the Art, especially
adapted to Vocal Music. For the use of Schools, Classes and Private
Instruction. By Leopold Meignen and Wm. W. Keys. Philadelphia: W. H.
Boner & Co., Agts.

Standard Facts and Figures; or, What you Do Know! What you Don't Know!!
What you Want to Know!!! (Revised and enlarged edition.) Edited by A. G.
Sullivan. New York: Morton & Dumont.

The Divine Order of the Universe, as interpreted by Emanuel Swedenborg;
with especial relation to Modern Astronomy. By Rev. Augustus Clissold,
M. A. London: Longmans, Green & Co.

From Traditional to Rational Faith; or, The Way I came from Baptist to
Liberal Christianity. By R. Andrew Griffin. (Town-and-Country Series.)
Boston: Roberts Brothers.

The Life, Times and Character of Oliver Cromwell. (Half-Hour Series.) By
the Right Honorable E. H. Knatchbull-Hugessen, M. P. New York: Harper &
Bros.

How to Teach according to Temperament and Mental Development; or,
Phrenology in the School-room and the Family. By Nelson Sizer. New York:
S. R. Wells & Co.

Rise of the People and Growth of Parliament, 1215-1485: Epochs of
English History. By James Rowley, M. A. (Harper's Half-Hour Series.) New
York: Harper & Bros.

Imaginary Conversations. By Walter Savage Landor. (Fourth Series.)
Dialogues of Literary Men, of Famous Women, etc. Boston: Roberts
Brothers.

Peru: Incidents of Travel and Exploration in the Land of the Incas, By
E. George Squier, M. A., F. S. A. New York: Harper & Brothers.

A Winter Story. By Miss Peard, author of "The Rose Garden."
(Town-and-Country Series.) Boston: Roberts Brothers.

That Lass o' Lowrie's. By Frances Hodgson Burnett. Illustrated by Alfred
Fredericks. New York: Scribner, Armstrong & Co.

Shakespeare's Tragedy of Macbeth. Edited, with Notes, by William J.
Rolfe, A. M. New York: Harper & Brothers.

Aloys. By B. Auerbach. Translated by Charles T. Brooks. (Leisure-Hour
Series.) New York: Henry Holt & Co.

Steam Injectors: Their Theory and Use. From the French of M. Léon
Pochet. New York: D. Van Nostrand.

Academy Sketches, Exhibition of 1877. With Descriptive Notes by "Nemo."
New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons.

Miss Nancy's Pilgrimage: A Story of Travel. By Virginia W. Johnson. New
York: Harper & Brothers.

Mark Twain's Adhesive Scrap Book. By Samuel L. Clemens. New York: Slote,
Woodman & Co.

Transmission of Power by Wire Ropes. By Albert W. Stahl, M. E. New York:
D. Van Nostrand.

Dot and Dime. Two Characters in Ebony. By One who Knows all about them.
Boston: Loring.

Hours with Men and Books. By William Mathews, LL.D. Chicago: S. C.
Griggs & Co.

Bessie Lang. By Alice Corkran. (Leisure-Hour Series.) New York: Henry
Holt & Co.

Annual Report of the Chief Signal-Officer for 1876. Washington:
Government Printing office.

Will it Be? By Mrs. Helen J. Ford. (Loring's Tales of the Day.) Boston:
Loring.

My Lady-Help, and What she Taught me, By Mrs. Warren. Boston: Loring.

A Modern Mephistopheles. (No-Name Series.) Boston: Roberts Brothers.





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