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Title: Graham's Magazine, Vol. XXXV, No. 4, October 1849
Author: Various
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                           GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE.
               VOL. XXXV.      October, 1849.      No. 4.


                           Table of Contents

                 Fiction, Literature and Other Articles

          A Year and a Day
          The Engraver’s Daughter
          Jasper St. Aubyn
          The Recreant Missionary
          Minnie Clifton
          Ibad’s Vision
          A Harmless Glass of Wine
          The Village Schoolmaster
          An Adventure of Jasper C——
          Effie Deans
          Wild-Birds of America
          Editor’s Table: The Means of a Man’s Lasting Fame
          Review of New Books

                       Poetry, Music, and Fashion

          Alice
          The Fountain in Winter
          A Parting Song
          The Light of Life
          The Bride of Broek-in-Waterland
          Song
          Northampton
          A Thought
          Speak Out
          The Willow by the Spring
          We Are Changed
          Le Follet
          I Love, When the Morning Beams

       Transcriber’s Notes can be found at the end of this eBook.

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration: L. Clennell, pinx.       A. L. Dick sc.

THE BAGGAGE WAGGON.
Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine.]



                           GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE.

         VOL. XXXV.     PHILADELPHIA, OCTOBER, 1849.     NO. 4.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                           A YEAR AND A DAY:


                      BY MRS. CAROLINE H. BUTLER.


                               CHAPTER I.

There was once in the city of Philadelphia a poor author whom chilling
disappointments and the biting stings of adversity had brought nigh the
grave—whose high hopes, ardent ambition, and glowing aspirations for
fame, were all quenched and broken beneath the pressure of penury and
wo. The wife, too, of his bosom had passed on to the shadowy land before
him, and now beckoned him to that blissful home beyond the grave where
sorrow and trouble are unknown. One fond tie still bound him to life. He
was a father. No other guide—no other friend had that fair young girl,
over whose innocent head scarce sixteen summers had flown, and for her
sake he still clung to a world whose charms else had long ceased to
attract.

And there was an old man whom the world called unfeeling and miserly,
who day by day passed by the humble home of the author. And day by day
as he passed along, saw at the window a pale young face bent over the
endless seam, and a small white hand never tiring busily plying the
needle. Or sometimes marked the child’s own feeble strength tasked to
support the tottering steps of suffering manhood to the open window,
that the air of heaven might revive that languid frame, while the
hollow, racking cough, and the fever spot on the cheek, like a rose
rooted in the grave and blossoming in beauty above, told too plainly
consumption had made its victim sure.

And then one day when the window was darkened, and he missed the pale
young face, the heart of the old man smote him as he passed along, and
turning he gently sought admittance, and from that time over the bed of
the sufferer the thin, white locks of the old man mingled with the
golden ringlets of Florence.

Heaven surely had first softened his heart, and then guided his
footsteps thither, for, like a ministering angel he came to the house of
sorrow to soothe the last moments of the dying man, and protect the
fatherless child.

Cheered once more by the voice of kindness—his feeble frame invigorated
by healthful nourishment—surrounded by comforts long unknown, or
remembered but as a dream in the dark night of poverty he had passed
through—what wonder the sick man rallied, and for a time gave way to
the flattering hope that he might yet leave a bright legacy to his
child—a name crowned with imperishable fame. His mind, long shattered
by sickness, caught back something of the fire of youth, and once more
his trembling hand seized the pen as the powerful instrument through
which riches and honor were to flow in upon him. But, as the meteor
which for an instant shoots over the wave in sparkling beauty, and then
sinks in the darkness of the fathomless gulf below, was the momentary
out-flashing of that once brilliant mind, ere the darkness of the grave
encompassed it.

When he felt the power of death too surely pressing upon him, he took
the hand of the old man and placed it on the head of his kneeling child
with a look pleading for kindness and protection. The heart of old Abel
May answered to this silent appeal, and stooping down he imprinted a
kiss upon the brow of Florence, solemnly promising never to forsake her.
The dying man raised his eyes in gratitude to heaven, and with a last
effort clasping his beloved child to his breast, expired.

The sad duties left for the living to perform over the venerated dust of
those we have loved, were ended with tears and lamentation—and now in
the wide world had Florence no friend but old Abel May.

“Florence,” said the old man, “I have long since buried the ties of
kindred—they could not survive ingratitude and distrust. I had but one
left to love—but one whom selfishness and sordid expectations did not
bind to me—and now he too has gone. I am now as much alone, my child,
as you—I in the winter of age, you in spring’s freshest bloom. You
shall be to me as the dearest of daughters, as pure and precious in my
eyes as God’s sacred word—although as my wife the world only must know
you. Then, Florence, will you give yourself to me; will you look upon me
in the light of that beloved parent whose loss you now deplore—will you
confide yourself to me in your loneliness and helplessness?”

And the innocent girl, lifting her meek blue eyes to the furrowed
countenance of the old man, threw herself confidingly upon his bosom,
and wept her thanks.

They were married; and then, as some priceless jewel committed to his
charge, which to guard and cherish was henceforth to be his pride and
happiness did Abel May bear home the young orphan.

For many years he had occupied a large mansion near the outskirts of the
city, whose dark granite front and heavy wooden shutters kept constantly
closed, imparted an air of chilliness and gloom to the neighborhood of
flashy brick houses and light airy cottages by which it was environed.
Abel May lived alone, keeping no domestics, and either preparing his own
meals, or partaking of them at a restaurateur’s. Occasionally the woman
whom he employed to do his washing was admitted to sweep and arrange his
sleeping room and the little parlor adjoining. The other apartments were
always locked, baffling all the curiosity of which no doubt the good
woman partook with others.

Various opinions and rumors were afloat concerning him in the
neighborhood, through which however the old man steered steadily and
regardlessly.

Not greater was the surprise of the captive princess in the fairy tale
on awakening one morning and finding before her window a sumptuous
palace rearing high its golden columns, where alone frowning rocks and
dark, turbid waters had before stood, than was the amazement which
pervaded the neighborhood, when early one morning they were aroused from
slumber by the _clink—clink—clink_ of the busy hammer, the crashing of
tiles, and sonorous fall of boards upon the pavements. And behold, every
window of that gloomy house was thrown wide to the glare of day—workmen
were on the roof—workmen were scaling ladders—workmen were tearing off
those clumsy shutters, while within, workmen in paper caps and white
aprons were busily wielding the several instruments of their handicraft.
Day after day their labors went on, and day after day added to the
astonishment of the neighbors. Plate-glass and light Venetian blinds
soon supplanted the small window panes and wooden shutters—a tasteful
portico and marble slabs supplied the place of the clumsy iron railing
and high stone steps so jagged and worn. Carpenters, masons, and
painters speedily completed the interior renovation, and then followed
heavily laden drays bearing rich furniture—and upholsterers flew from
room to room giving the last graceful touch of taste and fashion to the
arrangement of the various articles.

Next came the overwhelming announcement that old Abel May was married,
and that the sylph-like, graceful form, and sunny ringlets of the fair
young girl sometimes seen bending from the window, or leaning on the arm
of the old man, like a lily grafted on some withered branch, belonged to
no other than the bride—and wonder ceased not, but rather grew with the
“food it fed on.”

Not much less was the surprise of Florence at finding herself suddenly
the mistress of a home so charming. She had never connected the idea of
wealth with the plainly dressed humble old man who had so benevolently
administered to the comforts of her dying parent, and cheerfully did she
prepare to follow him to a home, no matter how lowly, so that love and
kindness were to be found there. When, then, old Abel May, lifting her
tenderly from the carriage which bore them from the church wherein the
solemn rite making them man and wife had just been pronounced, and led
her into apartments so splendid, with all that a refined taste might
approve, or a fastidious eye applaud, was it strange that for a moment
the young orphan doubted whether all was not, indeed, a dream or a fairy
creation, such as the pen of her father had often sketched for her
amusement—for never did her waking eyes or her sober senses dwell on
aught so rich and beautiful. Yet neither the elegance by which she was
surrounded, nor the charms which novelty lent to her new existence,
could for a long time withdraw her mind from dwelling on the irreparable
loss she had sustained. Happily, youth is not prone to despondency; hope
in the bright future buoys them exultingly over the billows of
disappointment which engulf so many sorrow-stricken hearts, and
therefore as time wore on it made the old man’s soul rejoice to see
smiles chasing away the tears from the countenance of this dear child.

The education of Florence had been conducted solely under the careful
tuition of her father, and her active mind, regulated and nourished by
judicious application. In the French and German languages she was a
correct scholar, and had attained some little proficiency in drawing;
yet of music or other elegant acquirements she knew nothing.

Hard are the lessons of adversity; and that his humble means precluded
his bestowing on his child those accomplishments for which nature had so
eminently qualified her, was often a source of deep regret to her fond
parent; but now, under the fostering care of the old man, how splendidly
did her talents develop themselves. Music and painting opened for her a
new world of enjoyment, and no expense did her kind protector withhold
to gratify to the fullest extent her eager desire for improvement. He
engaged the most eminent masters to attend upon her, nor did the
proficiency of the pupil shame their skill.

Very limited was the society which Abel May admitted within his walls,
and those only such as he considered worthy of his friendship and
confidence. This gave no disquiet to Florence; indeed, company rather
pained than pleased her. Her most delightful hours were those in which
she could add to the happiness of the old man, by the exercise of those
agreeable sources of entertainment owing their origin to him, or when
with pencil or book, alone in the beautiful little apartment which the
same kind hand had fitted up expressly for her use, the moments flew
unheeding in the all absorbing interest they inspired.

Occasionally, at the Opera or Theatres, old Abel May appeared with his
beautiful young wife; or perhaps, in the delightful coolness of a
summer’s morning, ere yet the noisy din of the city pervaded the air, or
the dust of its countless thoroughfares swept over the dewy freshness of
night, they sauntered through the silent streets or shady avenues of
Washington Square. But more frequently still within the sacred precincts
of Laurel Hill were they seen to wander. In one of its most retired
spots, where a cluster of drooping willows brushed the dew-drops from
the tall, rank grass, and the murmur of the wave below came up sadly yet
sweetly upon the ear, a plain monumental stone was planted. “My Father
Sleeps,” was the only sign it bore; and to this consecrated spot did
their steps most often turn, for well did one fond heart know _who_
slept so peaceful there, and over this hallowed grave the fair form of
Florence bent in filial devotion.

Wherever she appeared the admiration she attracted was universal; and if
some were prone to pity her lot, as being bound by such indissoluble
ties to old Abel May, they were quite at fault by her bright, sunny
countenance which certainly bore no traces of hidden sorrows for their
sympathies to probe. This might have flattered the pride of the old man
while it aroused his fears. His own life he knew, in the common course
of nature, could not be prolonged many years, and then what was to
become of that young girl thus thrown a second time upon the world, so
beautiful and so unprotected.

There was but one person whom he ever mentioned in terms of affection to
Florence, and this was his nephew, and the only son of a favorite
brother, long since dead, who bore his name, and whom he had destined
for his heir. But for many years young Abel May had not been heard from,
and his friends had finally given up all expectations of ever seeing him
again. It was said that being repeatedly reproached by envious relatives
on account of the interest his rich uncle manifested for him, calling
him a poor gentleman—a hanger-on—only waiting to step into dead men’s
shoes, with remarks of the like nature, originating in low, vulgar
minds, and that being a lad of high spirit, he became disgusted and
angered, and vowing he would either make his own fortune or never
return, young May suddenly disappeared.

At length age and infirmities pressed more and more sorely upon the good
old man. Soon he could no longer leave the house or even his
chamber—and then it was he felt how rich a treasure he possessed in
Florence. With how much tenderness and love did she watch over him,
patiently enduring with all the querulousness and complainings of an old
age racked with torturing pains; never weary, neither by day nor by
night, ever devising, ever executing some plan which might soothe his
troubles either of body or mind.

The old man died, leaving his fortune to Florence, upon one
condition—the strangest, surely, that ever guided the pen of a dying
man.

Never was so singular a will written—never was any thing more absurd!
And for more than a month, which is certainly a long time for any wonder
to stand its ground against the constant pressure of newer marvels, for
more than a month after the coffin and the tomb had alike received their
due, the city rang with the whimsicality of the last will and testament
of old Abel May, who by this said will had compelled his young, blooming
widow either to marry within a year of his demise, or otherwise forfeit
to relatives innumerable that fine fortune which, with this proviso, he
had bequeathed to her alone. The motives which actuated him were
doubtless intended as a kindness to the young girl whom his death would
leave unprotected. He overlooked the dangers to which he thus exposed
her from the crafty wiles of the spendthrift and fortune-hunter, or he
trusted, perhaps, that her innocence and loveliness might shield her
against their artifices.

From marble-columned squares and by-lanes—from suburban cottages and
distant villages, disappointed relatives came flocking in like a flight
of hungry crows, one and all croaking forth the will a forgery; or that
their beloved relative, for whom weepers a yard long streamed in the
wind, and black veils fluttered hopefully, through weakness of body and
consequent imbecility of mind, had been influenced by an artful young
wife to draw up the unrighteous instrument to which his signature was
attached. A likely story, truly, that passing by uncles and nephews,
aunts and nieces, to say nothing of innumerable cousins of the first and
third degree, he should have thrown his whole fortune into the hands of
a young girl, one, too, whom they all were convinced he had married only
that she might nurse his old body when gout or rheumatism should rack
his bones, but that he also should have added to this unheard of folly
his commands for her to marry, and by that means allow his hard-earned
riches to pass into the hands of nobody knows who—any beggar she might
choose to call up from squalid rags to fine linen and broadcloth, why
that passed all bounds of belief. There had been intrigue and treachery
somewhere; poor old Abel! it brought tears into their affectionate eyes
even to think of it.

But, unfortunately alike to their jealous affection and hopeful schemes,
the lawyers possessed a quietus in a certain document drawn up and
attested by competent witnesses, which ran thus:

“Whereas jealous and evil-minded persons may seem inclined to dispute my
last will and testament, I hereby declare in the presence of —— and of
——, that, as my dear wife, Florence, has been to me the kindest and
most tender of wives, denying herself for my sake those pleasures and
amusements natural to her youth, and has cheerfully devoted herself to
nursing a poor, feeble old man, I do in token of my love, approbation,
and gratitude, give unto her without reserve all the property of which I
may die possessed, both personal and real. And furthermore, I do most
earnestly entreat of her to choose some deserving young man whom she may
take as a husband, and that she may be happy in such choice, and be
rewarded thereby for her goodness to me, I pray God! And that she may be
influenced the more readily perhaps to comply with this, my last
request, I do hereby declare that unless within one year from my demise
she does make such choice, and marry in accordance, I do annul and make
void my will in her favor, my fortune in such case to be disposed of as
stipulated in my will and testament.”

Now when the smiling lawyers holding such a damper over the high hopes
of the solemn conclave of mourners, made known to them the existence of
this last document, uncles and aunts bounced out of the house like
roasted chestnuts seething and smoking with the fire of anger.

Not so the young nephews and the gallant cousins. Down they went on
their knees before the young widow, swearing she was divine—an angel—a
goddess—and right glad were they that the sensible old gentleman had
given her his fortune, for she deserved it, in faith she did—and they
hoped she would marry immediately; heavens! any body might be proud to
receive her hand—what was the paltry gold in comparison.

And each one of the seven secretly resolved to woo and win her,
and—_the fortune to boot_! But Florence only cast down her eyes and
wept unfeigned sorrow for the loss of a kind old man—her husband and
benefactor.


                              CHAPTER II.

Florence May was, indeed, a bewitching little widow—only eighteen, and
with nearly half a million of dollars in her rosy little palm. The
evening star bursting through a cloud was not more bright than were her
eyes twinkling through the veil of sable crape, or if perchance some
saucy zephyr brushed aside the envious _weed_, what charming flowers
were thereby disclosed—what tempting roses and lilies, and sweet, blue
violets, all bathed in the golden sunshine of her glittering tresses.
Ah, yes—and then the golden sunshine of those glittering guineas—truly
was she not a most adorable widow!

And never was a poor little widow so tormented with lovers since the
world began. _Dingle, dingle, dingle_, quoth the door-bell incessantly;
_tap, tap, tap_, urged the maid at the entrance of her private
sitting-room, until the poor child wearied of shaking her little head,
and uttering a “No!” to their various demands for admittance. With
cards, and tender _billet-doux_, her tables were overburthened, while
pluming themselves upon their relationship, the seven cousins and
nephews intruded without ceremony into her presence, eyeing each other
with jealous defiance, and snarling and snapping like a parcel of angry
lap-dogs.

“Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?”

“I do bite my thumb, sir.”

“Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?”

“No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir—but I bite my thumb, sir.”

The neighborhood were kept alive with surmises as to who would win the
rich heiress, daily expecting to see a gay wedding party issuing forth,
in contrast to the gloomy funereal spectacle so lately before them. Yet
weeks and months rolled on uneventful. What could it mean? Was the widow
crazy or bewitched? How could she remain so unconcerned when her fortune
was at stake! Day after day was poverty stealthily drawing nearer, in as
much as she still neglected to fulfill the terms on which her fortune
rested, and yet she moved about as careless and indifferent as though
the comforts and elegancies which surrounded her were unconditionally
hers—what a strange creature she must be!

It was thus reasoned the “lookers on in Venice.”

Six months of widowhood were passed. Florence was still unmarried; and
once more the relatives took heart against despair, and golden visions
mingled in their day-dreams. Her obstinacy was to them inexplicable—for
they knew upon the separate assurances of the several nephews and
cousins that she had had _unexceptionable_ offers, and if from those
choice specimens of man she could not select a husband, why, of course,
they had reason to hope she never would be married.

Such was the state of affairs, when one day Florence received the
following note, written in an unknown hand, accompanied with a bouquet
of beautiful flowers:

    “MADAM,—I have seen you, and who that has once looked upon you
    but must adore you! I dare not approach you, nor would I mingle
    with the throng of flatterers around you. Enough for me to
    worship at a distance, and to guard with my whole soul that
    treasure which may never be mine. My life I would willingly lay
    at your feet, but there are important reasons why you should not
    know me. Of one thing, madam, rest assured, you have a friend
    who will secretly watch over you, and guard you from every
    danger.”

Upon a mind so artless as that of Florence, this singular note, which
was without signature, produced a very pleasing influence, and excited a
lively interest for the unknown writer. The idea of possessing such a
friend inspired her with a degree of confidence such as she had not
known since the death of her husband. Nor to that one note did the
unknown limit his attentions—they were manifested in various ways.
Ofttimes in the sweet language of flowers they were spoken—or to her
little boudoir some rare and exquisite painting found its way. Books,
too, with penciled margins, all evincing a pure and elegant perception;
music, which, when awakened by her fingers, breathed the very spirit of
melody; and when from the same unknown hand there came a beautiful cage,
whence the tiny warbler trilled forth in sweetest notes her favorite
airs, Florence was lost in amazement. Who, then, was this mysterious
person who so well understood her tastes, and who was thus ever studying
her happiness? The note had stated: “There are important reasons why you
should not know me.” And Florence was possessed of too much delicacy,
and had too much respect for the writer of the note to seek to penetrate
the mystery. Yet by the use which she made of his gifts, her silent
thanks to the donor were expressed, and insensibly yielding to the
delightful associations they called forth, she felt as if some kind
guardian was ever near shielding her from evil.

Oft amid the rich braids of her hair those fragrant flowers were
intertwined, or rested above a heart not less pure than themselves. The
books acquired a new interest that other eyes had dwelt also upon their
pages; and never did her fingers so skillfully or so tenderly touch the
keys, as when before her was the music which the unknown had conveyed to
her; many times, too, the soft, sweet tones of a flute were heard
echoing the strain. When first they reached her ear, Florence hushed her
instrument and closed the window; but at midnight, again and again the
same sweet strains floated around her, and then she felt it could be no
other than the unknown, who, in music’s gentle voice, addressed her, and
this belief added greatly to the charmed life she was leading, thus
mysteriously watched over and protected.

It was now that chance brought her acquainted with a person whom we must
allow to introduce himself to the reader by the following letter:

    “_From Charles Crayford to his friend, Hastings._

    “I am in luck, my dear fellow; give me joy, for Fortune, blessed
    goddess, hath at length wafted me to the favor of wealth and
    beauty. ’Pon my soul, I know not which I am the most in love
    with, the person or the fortune of the divinity. Her name is
    May—Florence May. She is a widow—a young, blooming, bewitching
    widow, with half a million at her own free disposal, and,
    happily, without a relative in the world, or jealous guardian to
    cavil about disparity of fortune, or pry into secrets.

    “‘But how—and when—and where—did you meet your divinity?’ you
    ask. Listen, then, and admire my policy.

    “Passing down Chestnut street in a somewhat moralizing
    vein—unheeding the light forms and bright eyes flitting past
    me, and coining some new device to elude the importunities of my
    landlady and tailor, when, just as I reached the Washington
    House, the whole moving multitude came to a sudden halt—the
    cause of which I never even thought to ascertain—for “more
    attractive metal” at that moment drew my attention. On the steps
    of the hotel, my eye caught the fairest vision ever mortal
    beheld. It was that of a young and beautiful girl, but whether
    descending from the house, or newly alighted from Paradise, may
    I forfeit her guineas if I can tell. She was accompanied by a
    respectable looking middle-aged woman, whom I judged to be a
    domestic. I noticed the heavenly eyes of this beautiful creature
    were bent with pity upon a pale, sickly little girl, who was
    trying to sell a few bunches of flowers among the crowd.

    “‘Will you buy my flowers?’ said the child to a fashionably
    dressed lady—‘Will you buy my flowers—only a _fip_.’

    “‘Really,’ exclaimed the fine lady, taking no notice whatever of
    the gentle voice and beseeching looks of the little girl—‘these
    genteel beggars are an insufferable nuisance!’

    “‘Will you buy my flowers?’ again asked the child of a pompous
    old gentleman, who stood pulling and vaporing before me—‘Buy my
    flowers, sir?’

    “‘Out of the way—quick—be off—or I will have you taken up for
    a vagrant!’ cried the pompous gentleman, elevating his
    gold-headed cane and shaking it over her head. Hastings, you
    should have seen the bright glow of indignation which flushed
    the cheeks of my charmer as this rude speech met her ear! My
    good genius nudged my elbow, and prompted me to pity the poor
    child. ‘Come here, my dear, and I will buy your flowers,’ I
    said. The frightened little girl sprung quickly to my side and
    looked imploringly up in my face. ‘And where do you live?’ I
    continued, confident that the eyes of the fair one were upon me,
    and taking out my tablets, I affected to note down her
    answer—then slipping some money into her hand, (what
    improvidence you will say,) I added—‘Keep the flowers, my poor
    child, perhaps you can sell them again.’ ’Pon my soul, the look
    of approbation which beamed from her eyes, as mine _casually_
    glanced toward the beautiful unknown, would have melted the
    heart of a miser to compassion. The crowd now began to move. In
    passing the little flower-girl my divinity endeavored to slip
    some money into her hand, but in the confusion and press of the
    moment it fell upon the pavement. I quickly picked it up and
    gave it to the child, and—lucky dog—received a bow of thanks
    and a sweet smile as my reward. Now mark the continued favors of
    the jade Fortune. That very evening, I don’t know what tempted
    me to call upon those prosy, clever people the Livermores, and
    there who should I meet but the same bewitching fair one. Ah,
    Hastings, ‘there is a divinity that shapes our ends;’ have I not
    proved it to you? I saw at once she recognized me as the hero of
    the morning’s adventure, and having then made my appearance in
    the character of _excellence_, I now topped the same part to
    perfection. I found her as far superior in mental as in personal
    charms to those around her, and when my hostess whispered me
    that she was also the uncontrolled mistress of a fortune, my
    heart melted at once—_in the crucible of Mammon!_ The next day
    I took the liberty to call upon her, and was most graciously
    received, and have been a frequent visiter since. You should
    hear my conversation, Hastings—you would discredit the evidence
    of your senses. I affect morality and virtue—quote Cowper and
    Milton, and hint at charities committed _sub-rosa_. Think of
    becoming the husband of such a young, pretty dove-eyed
    creature—ay, and to husband the money, too, instead of marrying
    age and deformity for the sake of the gilding! By the way, I
    find my fair one wastes her fortune prodigiously upon paupers
    and charitable institutions. I shall look after this by and by;
    in the meantime, I am willing she should consider me a pattern
    of disinterested goodness.

                                                        Yours,
                                                       C. CRAYFORD.”


                              CHAPTER III.

It was no wonder that Florence should have been deceived by one so
artful and designing as Crayford. Her first introduction to him was
calculated to impress her strongly in his favor—a vantage ground which
he knew well how to maintain. His conversation so artfully fraught with
morality—the correct and refined taste he manifested for music, for
painting, and all those acquirements which were so delightful to
her—his well argued schemes of philanthropy, added to an elegant person
and insinuating address, might have deceived one less ingenuous and
confiding than Florence. In him all those delightful influences with
which the unknown had surrounded her seemed concentrated; in fact, as
one and the same she began gradually to blend them in her imagination.

Day after day, therefore, was the dangerous Crayford admitted to her
presence, and each day more securely planting himself in her favor. In
the meantime the seven nephews and cousins made common cause, and fought
bravely against this new aspirant, whom they saw plainly was fast
bearing off the prize from them, until alarmed by several very
unequivocal threats from Crayford, they vanished, leaving the field to
him.

But where, all this time, was the friend who had so ardently pledged
himself her protector, surely now was the time when his voice should not
be silent.

A small casket was one day placed in the hands of Florence, which, on
opening, she found to contain a brooch, representing a stem of the lily
of the valley, emblem of purity and innocence, composed of beautiful
pearls, but around which a small, glittering snake was entwined. The
head of the reptile, its forked tongue darting fire, was bent over the
sweet floweret as if with its noxious venom it would destroy it forever.
The snake was of emeralds—the eyes and tongue of small sparkling rubys.
On lifting the brooch, a folded paper dropped from it, on which was
traced in the same well known characters:

“Beware, pure and innocent lily—the charmer is near, but his breath is
poison!”

To Crayford alone she knew this singular warning could refer, and it
caused her at first both dismay and sorrow. Could it be, then, that he
was a villain! Could it be that under an exterior so pleasing vice and
deformity could hide itself; no, it was impossible! Florence had no room
in her heart for suspicions so cruel toward any one. Of friendship
abused—of confidence violated, or of the heart’s warm affection
betrayed, that most bitter lesson of life she had yet to learn. Ah,
happy those, who, on their journey through life, may never meet with its
truths!

And was it not unjust, she argued, to receive implicitly the words of
one unknown to the prejudice of one whom she did know, and who appeared
every way so estimable. Might she not also attribute to jealousy this
singular interference of one who had already declared himself to be her
lover. The more she dwelt upon this conclusion, the more reasonable it
appeared; and finally closing the casket, she prepared to fulfill an
engagement with Crayford to visit the Academy of Fine Arts.

In the drawing-room she found him already waiting for her, and
apologizing for her delay, they immediately set forth upon the intended
expedition.

Never had Crayford appeared more brilliant, more fascinating than this
morning; and was it strange that the warning of the unknown should have
passed from her thoughts as a dream. As they reached the corner of ——
Square, Florence suddenly observed a young woman, very pale, and meanly
attired, who, leaning against the iron railing, was fixedly gazing upon
her with a look of such utter despair and misery, as excited at once her
pity and curiosity. A miserable cloak closely enveloped her person, the
hood of which was held tightly around the lower part of her face by her
thin white hand, yet did not conceal the ghastly pallor of her
countenance. Her eyes were uncommonly large, and of a soft, lustrous
black; it even seemed to Florence they were filled with tears, and her
brow looked as cold and pure as the brow of the dead.

“What beautiful eyes!” said she, in a low voice to her companion; “pray
look!”

As Crayford sought the wretched object Florence pointed out, he started
as though an adder had stung him, and would have hurried on, but the
girl, with an impatient gesture, as if to address him, sprang a step or
two forward:

“Poor creature! let us hear what she has to say,” said Florence.

“Excuse me, my dear Mrs. May,” replied Crayford, with an effort at
calmness, “I cannot submit you to the importunities of that woman; is it
possible you have never seen her—it is Nell, the crazy fortune-teller!”
then throwing her a half dollar, accompanied by a look which Florence
did not observe, he passed on with his lovely companion.

“Poor creature! she should be taken care of!” exclaimed Florence.
Looking back, she saw the money still glittering upon the pavement,
while the girl, with her form slightly bent forward, her arms extended
before her, and her small, thin hands clasped together, seemed the very
personification of despair.

They soon reached the Academy. At the entrance they encountered several
persons, some entering, others leaving the building. As they were
ascending the steps, a voice close to the ear of Florence, whispered,

“_Beware of the serpent!_”

She started and looked quickly around, but saw no one to whom she could
attribute the remark. An old gentleman and lady were behind her, and
with the exception of a spruce, dandified individual, she could discover
no one else. It was sometime, however, ere she could recover from the
agitation into which this had thrown her; and Crayford, attributing her
abstraction entirely to her pity for the poor fortune-teller, exerted
all his skill as a connoisseur to draw her attention to the beautiful
creations of the painter and sculptor. He was successful, and the mind
of Florence soon engrossed alone by the pleasing objects around her.

Several times, in passing through the rooms, her eyes encountered those
of a gentleman dressed in deep mourning, who seemed to be regarding her
with a sad and mournful gaze. At first she thought nothing of it; but
when again and again she met the same sad expressive eyes, she could not
suppress a feeling of agitation.

They spent some hours here, and were about retiring, when, in one of the
galleries, Florence observed the same gentleman standing at a little
distance attentively regarding a fine group of statuary. His profile was
turned toward them, and struck with the intellectual cast of his
features, Florence pointed him out to Crayford.

“Heavens, he here!” he exclaimed, as his eye fell upon him, while a
mortal paleness overspread his features; then aware his agitation must
appear singular to his companion, he added, “I met that gentleman abroad
under circumstances of very strange interest; some other time I will
explain—if you please we will now pass on.”

As they reached the door Florence looked around, but the stranger had
disappeared. Once, as they threaded their way homeward through the busy
crowd, she thought she met the same mournful eyes, but ere she could
take a second look they had vanished.

Poor Florence! what conflicting thoughts distressed her when left to her
own reflections, for notwithstanding her resolution of the morning, her
confidence in Crayford began to be shaken, and that it was so pained
her. She longed for some kind, sympathizing friend to whom she could
confide her doubts, and who would counsel her how to act. Among her few
acquaintances she knew of none capable of advising her, and the good old
woman who acted as her housekeeper, although she loved her dear young
mistress, and would go to the ends of the earth to serve her, could be
of little assistance in a case like the present. She did not love
Crayford, yet she felt he was one who had interested her more than any
person she had ever met with, one whom, perhaps, she might learn to
love; and then, should he prove the villain, should she find that the
warnings of the unknown were but too true—what would be her fate! At
one moment she resolved to dismiss him forever from her presence, and
the next her heart accused her of prejudice and injustice. Poor girl!
never had she felt so unhappy as when that night she rested her aching
head upon her pillow. Hark! what sweet music floats around her, and
insensibly yielding to its soothing power, she sunk into a gentle,
refreshing slumber.

When she awoke the sun was already glinting bravely through the muslin
window-shades, and with a much lighter heart, she sprang from her couch.
Remembering she had invited Crayford to breakfast with her, she hastily
made her toilet. A small pleasure party, acquaintances of Florence, had
been formed for Cape May. They were to start at an early hour, and
Crayford had so earnestly pleaded to make one of the number, that
finally she had consented. They were to breakfast together, and then
proceed to the place of rendezvous.

Just as Florence was about descending to the breakfast-room, a note was
handed her. She turned pale as she took it, for she saw it was from the
unknown. With a trembling hand she broke the seal and read:

“Ere it may be too late, listen to the warning voice of your friend. Let
me arouse you from that pleasing repose, which, like the calm preceding
a tempest, lulls you in such fancied security, let me bid you shun
Crayford—shun _him_ whose breath would sully the purity of an
angel—shun him as you would the viper in your path!”

As Florence finished reading, she sunk into a chair, and covering her
face with her hands, burst into tears.

“Mr. Crayford is below, ma’am,” said a servant, entering.

Alas! how should she act! There was a truth and earnestness about the
note she dared not disregard, and a few moments’ reflection determined
her to avoid him until she could learn either the truth or falsehood of
these heavy accusations. She therefore bade the servant say that a
violent headache would preclude her from joining the intended
excursion—and she also sent a note of the same purport to the lady
manager of the party.

In a few moments she saw Crayford leave the house. Could she have read
the thoughts then passing through his mind, she would have found full
confirmation of her worst fears.

She now determined upon a bold step, and with trembling hand addressed a
note to her mysterious counsellor:

“If you are really my friend, why do you thus shun me; why, if honest,
thus clothe yourself in so much mystery? What proof have you to give me
of your sincerity? Alas! I fear, none; and yet I would not have it so,
for the thought of your friendship has been very pleasant to me! What
reliance can I place upon the assertions of one who thus shuns inquiry,
against the character of a person bearing the semblance of so much worth
as Crayford? I have a right to demand proofs of what you have stated;
and I now do so, which, if you withhold, I shall deem all your
accusations against that individual as base forgeries. God judge the
right!”

This note she sealed, and ordering the servants to inform her when the
usual messenger from the unknown should again appear, she sat down to
reflect upon the singular position in which she found herself placed.

It was not until the following morning that Florence had an opportunity
to forward her note. From her window she at length saw the lad coming
down the street with a basket of beautiful roses. She immediately ran
down, and as he rang the bell she opened the door quickly, and placing
the note in his hand, bade him deliver it to his master. The next
moment, how gladly she would have recalled him, so imprudent appeared to
her the course she was pursuing. It was too late, however—and in a
state of much agitation she now awaited the result. She had not to wait
long. In the course of an hour she received an answer couched as
follows:

“You demand proof, and you shall have it. Thank God that you are
sufficiently alarmed to ask it. Go, then, to No. 7 —— Lane, and
inquire for a Mrs. Belmont. Be not dismayed at what is before
you—shrink not from a step which may save you from wretchedness. Go,
then, pure and lovely one, and fear not. One will be near you who will
protect you with his life.”

                                            [_Conclusion in our next_

                 *        *        *        *        *



                                 ALICE.


                        BY THOMAS DUNN ENGLISH.


    As in yonder woods I wandered,
          By the river-side,
    On the bitter past I pondered,
    On the gladness I had squandered,
      And upon my erring bride,
      By her dying sanctified.

    Pleasure from a crystal chalice
          Once I gladly drained;
    Lived we in a fairy palace,
    Wildest passion, I and Alice;
      Every object seemed attained,
      Every joy my soul had gained.

    While I trusted her, and thought her
          Honest as she seemed;
    While I fondest worship brought her,
    And my glowing glances taught her
      Of the love which from them gleamed,
      I awoke—I had but dreamed.

    After she became a mother,
          Leaving me her child,
    Fled she from me with another—
    With a man I thought my brother.
      Fate its mountain on me piled,
      And my mind grew rapt and wild.

    So it was, he treated vilely
          One who trusted him;
    Thus did she with action wily
    Lull me, ere she left me slyly—
      Left me for her passion’s whim,
      With my life-lamp growing dim.

    Sad I sat me by my lattice,
          Where the faded flowers,
    Withered poppies, seared clematis,
    And the damp-mould which begat is
      By the long-neglected hours,
      Seemed in harmony with my powers.

    Thus my life-lamp’s fitful shimmer
          Faint and fainter shone;
    Thus its fastly-fading glimmer,
    Daily growing dim and dimmer,
      As I brooded there alone,
      Lit my happiness o’erthrown.

    Day by day thus wrapt in sadness,
          Sat I quiet there;
    Desperately rejecting gladness,
    Wooing the approach of madness,
      Nursing wrongs with savage care,
      Whose nurture would create despair.

    Time at length it soothed me slightly,
          Covering o’er my care;
    Made me bear my woes more lightly,
    Think my honor less unsightly;
      But her absence made her fair,
      Though criminal beyond compare.

    Years had past, and in this Babel
          Of continual din,
    I had striven, as I was able,
    Till the silver streaked the sable
      Of my hair, which growing thin
      Showed decay which must begin.

    Years had past, but naught could fetter
          Love I should have spurned;
    Every day I loved her better—
    Shame upon me! Then I met her,
      In the wo that she had learned,
      Under the blow which she had earned.

    By her death-hour’s turbid river
          Stood her trembling soul;
    And she asked me to forgive her,
    By her shame, which would outlive her,
      By her anguish past control,
      By the hell which was her goal.

    Could I at such time refuse her
          Such a sad request?
    Could I then of crime accuse her—
    At that moment harshly use her?
      So I bade her pass to rest,
      With forgiveness on her breast.

    Smiled the Magdalen, and prayed me
          With a feeble pride,
    Prayed me by the God who made me,
    That when in the earth they laid me
      It should be her form beside—
      Hers, my false and fallen bride.

    As I stood in pity by her,
          Looking in her face,
    Could I this small boon deny her?
    Pride revolted, but a higher,
      Holier feeling took its place,
      And I smiled the sought-for grace.

    This thing won, another favor
          From me she did pray;
    That, forgetting her behavior,
    Ere death’s rising waves would lave her,
      I would bend and on that day
      Kiss her chill lips as she lay.

    This I did, and as she started
          At my warm lip’s touch,
    From her form the spirit parted,
    Leaving me thus riven-hearted,
      Held in Sorrow’s iron clutch,
      Smiling never, suffering much.

    In the dark-brown shade I wander—
          Sadness at my side;
    Growing of my sorrows fonder,
    As upon the past I ponder,
      And upon my erring bride,
      Who, as I forgave her, died.

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration: _Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine._

THE ENGRAVER’S DAUGHTER.]

                 *        *        *        *        *



                        THE ENGRAVER’S DAUGHTER.


                          BY HARRY SUNDERLAND.


                            [SEE ENGRAVING.]

Little Dora Stilling was but six years old when her best friend went to
Heaven. She was a beautiful child, and her father, Mark Stilling, an old
engraver, loved her with a species of blind idolatry. Stilling was by
birth a German, and his reading had not gone much beyond the childish
romances peculiar to his country, which had left upon his mind an
indelible impression. At twelve years old he was apprenticed to an
engraver, and since that time had seen little of the world beyond the
room in which his noiseless occupation happened to be. His mind,
therefore, remained half asleep, and the dreams that passed through it
had little in common with the real life around him. He was an old man
when he married, and his wife, who passed with many, who did not know
better, as his daughter, died a few years after their only child, Dora,
was born.

Upon the death of his wife, the heart of Mark Stilling turned toward the
sweet child she had left him, with an affection made jealous and
intenser by his loss. For her he desired all good in the world’s power
to bestow; but as to what was the greatest good he had but vague
notions. As he grew older, and his mind drooped toward second childhood,
from the ideas and feelings of his earlier years the dust of time was
blown away, and all was as distinct and fresh as if the spring-time of
life were but yesterday. Images of beautiful maidens, wooed by princes
in disguise, floated before his imagination; and then his thoughts would
turn to Dora, who grew more and more lovely in his eyes every day.
Nothing short of some such consummation for his child, he felt, would
ever satisfy him.

It was little wonder that the old engraver loved Dora with an absorbing
affection; for, opening like a rose, she displayed to his eyes some new
feature of loveliness every day, as well in mind as in body. While he
sat at his work, tracing out upon the hard, polished steel forms of
beauty, Dora was ever present in his mind, more beautiful than any
creation of the painter’s pencil he had yet been commissioned to copy.

Swiftly the years glided on, and Dora became less and less a child. As
soon as she was able to go to school, she was placed under the care of
the best teachers in the city, and from that time every dollar earned by
Stilling, beyond what the simple wants of nature demanded, was spent
upon his daughter, that she might be thought accomplished in every
thing, and thus made a fit companion for the best in the land. He wished
her to be, in one word, a _lady_—and, in the engraver’s mind, a lady
was something more than the term conveys in its usual acceptation.

But as Dora grew up lovely and accomplished as her parent’s heart could
desire, she exhibited a simplicity of taste, and a love for useful
employments, that her father did not in the least approve. Fond old man!
Half insane, under the delusion himself had conjured up from among his
early fancies, he felt, whenever Dora’s hands were engaged in work, that
she was degrading herself, and ever sought to keep her above the
necessity of entering into any domestic occupation. Dora, as her mind
grew clearer, saw the weakness and folly of all this. She saw that her
father was old, and growing feebler and less able to work every day, and
that his income was steadily decreasing; and she felt that, before a
very long time, upon her would fall the burden of his as well as her own
support. One day she came to him and said—

“Dear father, you are getting old, and your strength is failing. Let me
go and learn a trade, and then I can work for you.”

The old man caught for breath two or three times, like one suddenly
deprived of air.

“A trade, did you say, child!” He spoke in a low whisper.

“Yes, father, a trade. Let me learn some trade, so that I can help you.
I am young, and you are old. You have worked for me since I was child;
now let me work for you.”

“No, no, Dora! You shall not learn a trade,” replied Stilling firmly.
Then he added, in a chiding voice, “How could you think of such a thing!
You must look higher, my child. You are as good as any lady in the land,
and may take the place of the best.” Here his voice grew animated.
“Don’t you remember the story of the light-haired maiden whom the king’s
son saw, and loved better than all the proud court ladies, because she
was beautiful and good; and how he came in a splendid chariot, and
carried her away and made her his bride? True, there are no kings
here”—the old man faintly sighed—“but there are many rich and great
people. No—no—Dora, you shall not learn a trade.”

Dora understood well what her father meant by these allusions, for he
had often talked so before, and sometimes more plainly; and she knew
that it would be of no use to argue against him. So she said no more
about learning a trade. But she engaged more diligently in every useful
thing that came to her hand, and sought, by every means in her power, to
add to her father’s comfort.

Almost alone as Mark Stilling was, and possessing none of those
cultivated tastes and accomplishments necessary for one who would
introduce a young girl like his daughter into society, the old man saw
weeks and months go by, after Dora had become a woman, and yet his
lovely flower remained hidden by the wayside. He looked upon her as she
came in and went out, and wondered that all the world was not captivated
by her beauty. And as he grew older, and his intellect became feebler
and feebler, this one idea took a still stronger hold upon his mind.

Dora, at the age of nineteen, began to feel great concern for her
father. Both body and mind it was plain to her were failing rapidly; and
orders for work were much less frequent than they had been. But even if
work had been as abundant as before, he had less ability to perform it;
and this was daily decreasing. Again she asked permission to learn a
trade; but it was met with as firm an opposition as before, and on the
same ground.

“I must have some means of supporting myself and father,” she said
thoughtfully to herself, “for it will not be long that he can keep at
work. What shall I do? He will not let me learn a trade.” She reflected
for a long time, and then, as if all had become clear to her, she
clapped her hands together and murmured—“Yes—yes. That shall be it. I
will devote myself to my music until I become proficient enough to
teach.”

Already much money had been expended on Dora’s musical education, and
she played and sang well. But she was not skilled enough to be able to
give instructions. So from that time she spent many hours each day at
her piano; and also practiced on the guitar. As the old man listened to
her warblings, how little dreamed he that all this was but the learning
of a trade, against which his mind had so revolted.

As we have said, the old man became less and less competent to perform
his work well and expeditiously, and it gradually left him and went into
other hands. His income thus reduced, it became necessary to abridge the
expenses of his household, or fall in debt, something for which Stilling
had a natural horror. The first step downward, and one that it hurt the
engraver much to take, was the giving up of the neat little house in
which he had lived, and taking apartments in a second story, at half the
rent formerly paid. Dora urged strongly, when this change was made, to
have their domestic sent away.

“I can do all the work, father. Let Ellen go, and then we will save
nearly half our living.”

But the old man would not listen a moment to this, and silenced his
daughter by an emphatic “No.”

Yet for all this care in keeping Dora above the sphere of usefulness,
her charms had not won for her a distinguished lover. Still Dora had a
lover, and this was less wonderful than it would have been had her sweet
face not pictured itself on some heart. But her lover was only a humble
clerk in a store where she had often been to make purchases. He was as
simple and earnest in all his tastes and feelings as Dora herself. Their
meetings were not frequent, for young Edwards had been told of the old
engraver’s weakness, and did not, therefore, venture to call upon his
sweetheart at her home.

At length so little work came that Stilling did not receive more than
sufficient money to buy food, and actual privation began to creep in
upon himself and daughter. Stern necessity required the dismissal of
their domestic, and then the old man busied himself in household
matters, in order to keep Dora as far as possible above such menial
employments. As age crept on, and his intellects grew still weaker, he
clasped his fond delusion more closely to his heart, and observed all of
Dora’s movements with a more jealous eye.

For as long a time as a year had the faith of Dora and her lover been
pledged. Their meetings were generally in the street, on a certain
appointed afternoon of each week. Then they walked together and talked
about the future, when there should be no barrier to their happiness.
But the young man, as time wore on, grew impatient; and his pride
occasionally awakened, telling him that he was as good as the old
engraver, and worthy, in every respect, to claim the hand of his
daughter. Sometimes this feeling showed itself to Dora, when the maiden
would be so hurt that Edwards always repented of his hasty words, and
resolved to be more guarded in future.

“Let me call and see you at your father’s,” said Edwards, one day as
they were walking together; “perhaps I may not be so unwelcome a visiter
as you think.”

“Oh, no, no! you must not think of it,” replied Dora quickly.

“But where is this to end?” inquired the young man. “If he will not
accept me as your lover, and you cannot become mine except with his
consent, the case seems hopeless.”

Dora did not reply at the moment, and they walked along for some time in
silence.

“There is a way. I have thought of it a great deal,” at length said the
young girl. She spoke with some hesitation in her manner.

“What is it?” inquired her lover.

Dora leaned toward him, and said something in a low voice.

“That’s not to be thought of,” was the quick reply of the young man.

Dora was silent, while her bosom, as it rose and fell quickly, showed
that her feelings were much disturbed.

The suggestion, whatever it was, appeared to hurt or offend the young
man, and when they separated, it was with a coldness on his part that
made tears dim the eyes of Dora the moment she turned from him.

On their next meeting both felt constrained; and their conversation was
not so free and tender as before. It took some weeks for the effect of
Dora’s proposition, whatever it was, to wear off. But after that time
the sunshine came back again, and was brighter and warmer than before.

One day, it was perhaps four or five months after the little
misunderstanding just mentioned, the old engraver was visited by a
stranger, whose whole appearance marked him as either a foreigner or one
who had lived abroad. He wanted him, he said, to copy on steel, in his
most finished style, the miniature of a lady. As he mentioned his errand
to the engraver, he drew from his pocket the miniature of a young and
exquisitely beautiful woman, set in a costly gold locket. Mark Stilling
took the picture, but the moment he looked at it his countenance
changed.

“Is it not a beautiful face?” said the stranger.

“I have seen it before,” remarked the engraver, with a thoughtful air.

“Have you?” was the quick inquiry.

“Yes. But of whom is it a likeness?” asked the old man.

“Of one,” said the stranger, “who has flitted before me, of late, the
impersonation of all that is lovely in her sex. As she passes me in the
street, I gaze after her as one would gaze at an angel. A skillful
painter, at my request, has sketched her face, taking feature after
feature, as he could fix them, until, at last, this image of beauty has
grown under his pencil. And now I want it transferred to steel, lest
some accident should deprive me of its possession.”

While the stranger thus spoke, Stilling sat gazing upon the miniature
with the air of one bound by a spell. And no wonder—for it was the
image of his own child! and it seemed, as he looked into the pictured
face intently, as if the lips would part and the voice of Dora fall upon
his ears. Then he turned his eyes upon the dignified, princely looking
stranger, and the thought came flashing through his mind that his dream
of years was about being realized. Dora was the lovely unknown of whom
he had spoken with so much enthusiasm; with whom he was so passionately
enamored.

“Will you do the work for me?” said the stranger, breaking in upon the
old man’s revery.

“Yes—yes,” answered Stilling.

“How long do you want?”

“Two months.”

“So long?”

“Yes, to do it well.”

“Take, then, your own time, and charge your own price. Here are fifty
dollars,” and the stranger handed the engraver some money. “I will call
every day while the work is progressing, that I may look at the sweet
picture upon which you are engaged.”

“How large shall it be?” inquired the engraver.

“Just the size of the miniature,” replied the stranger. Then rising, he
said, as he bowed to Stilling, “I will see you again to-morrow about
this hour.”

On the next day, when the stranger called, Dora was sitting by her
father. An exclamation of delight was checked upon his lips, as his eyes
fell upon the beautiful girl; but his noble face expressed surprise and
undisguised admiration.

“The lovely original!” dropped at length from his tongue.

“My daughter,” said the engraver.

Dora rose up and made a low courtesy.

“Your daughter! How strange! You did not tell me this yesterday.”

“No. But she is my child—my only child—and I love her better than I
love my life.”

Light kindled in the old man’s face, and a quiver of excitement was in
every nerve. It was only by an effort that he refrained from giving way
to the most extravagant praises of Dora, who sat, with her eyes meekly
cast upon the floor.

On the next day, the stranger called again, and found Dora, as at the
previous visit, with her father. This time he spoke to the maiden in a
familiar, yet respectful way. Every look he directed toward her was one
of admiration; yet not a glance of this character escaped the watchful
eyes of her father.

From the first Mark Stilling regarded the stranger with especial favor.
After the meeting with Dora it was settled in the old man’s mind that
fortune was at length to crown with joy his dearest wish in life. All
suspicion was lulled to rest in his mind. The fact that the stranger
withheld his name, but confirmed him in the belief that he was either a
nobleman in disguise, or connected with some wealthy and distinguished
family at home.

Week followed week, and the stranger came every day to mark the progress
of the plate, the execution of which he did not countermand. He never
staid over an hour at a time, and that was mostly spent with Dora, whose
musical abilities he highly praised, and whom he always asked to play
for him. The little parlor of the engraver was on a different floor from
that on which he worked, and so, while playing for the stranger, Dora
was always alone with him.

Stilling was in no way surprised when the stranger asked the hand of his
daughter in marriage. Dora was born to be a lady, and now had come the
fufillment of her destiny. The poor old man’s mind was so infirm that it
could not go beyond this simple idea. No doubt came to trouble him; no
suspicion disturbed his happy dream. More than the stranger told him he
believed; for as to who he was, or to what station Dora would be
elevated, he was silent. But Stilling asked nothing on this head. He
believed all he wished to believe. The offer for his child’s hand he
felt to be a noble offer, and he yielded his fullest consent.

And so Dora was married to the stranger. But not until five minutes
before the ceremony was performed, did Stilling know that his name was
_Edwards_. The marriage took place in Stilling’s little parlor. After
the rite was over, and the minister had retired, the bridegroom took the
old man’s hand, and said to him, as he pointed to the finished plate
containing the head of Dora.

“That, father, is your last work. You can rest now after so many years
of labor. Come, there is a carriage at the door; we will go to our new
home.”

Stilling was half bewildered, yet happy. Without a pause or objection,
he suffered his children to take him to another home. That home was
really a modest one; but in the eyes of the fond old man it was little
less than a palace.

On the morning after the marriage, the moustache of young Edwards
disappeared, and he went forth daily from that time and engaged in his
regular business. But the engraver, who now began to sink rapidly both
in mind and body, dreamed not that Dora’s husband was only a clerk,
whose yearly income fell below a thousand dollars.

In less than a year Mark Stilling slept with his fathers, deeply mourned
by the child he had loved with so strong and blind a passion. He was
ignorant to the last of the deceit that had been practiced upon him, and
as firmly believed that the kind and affectionate young husband of Dora
was of noble blood, and one of the great ones of the land, as that the
sun arose and set daily. And he was far happier in this belief than he
would have been with all as real as he imagined.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                           JASPER ST. AUBYN;


                       OR THE COURSE OF PASSION.


                       BY HENRY WILLIAM HERBERT.


                      (_Continued from page 150._)

Thus passed the afternoon, until the evening meal was announced, and
Jasper was left alone, with nothing but his own wild and whirling
thoughts to entertain him. He was ill at ease in his own mind, ill at
ease with himself and with all around him. Vexed with Durzil
Bras-de-fer, for offering in the first instance to take him as a partner
in his adventure, and then for failing at the pinch to back his offer by
his stout opinion; vexed with his father for thwarting his will, and yet
more for rebuking him publicly, and in the presence of Theresa, too,
before whom, boy-like, he would fain have figured as a hero; and lastly,
vexed with Theresa herself, because, though kind and gentle, she had not
sat by his bedside all day, as she did yesterday, or devoted all her
attention to himself alone, he was in the very mood to torment himself,
and every one else, to the extent of his powers.

Then, as his thoughts wandered from one to another of those whom he
thought fit to look upon as having wronged him, they settled on the most
innocent of all, Theresa; and, at the same moment, the wild words, which
he had uttered without any ulterior meaning at the time, and with no
other intent than that of annoying his father, recurred to his mind,
concerning village maidens.

He started, as the idea recurred to him, and at first he wondered what
train of thought could have brought back those words in connection with
Theresa’s image. But, as he grew accustomed to his own thought, it
became, as it were, the father to the wish; and he began to consider how
pretty and gentle she was, and how delicate her slight, rounded figure,
and how soft and low her voice. Then he remembered that she had looked
at him twice or thrice during the day, with an expression which he had
never seen in a woman’s eye before, and which, though he understood it
not, did not bode ill to his success; and lastly, the worst, bitterest
thought of all arose in his mind, and retained possession of it. “I will
spite them all,” he thought, “that proud, insolent young sailor, who,
because he is a few years older than I, and has seen swords drawn once
or twice—for all, I doubt if he can fence or shoot any better than I,
or if he be a whit more active—affects to look down upon me as a
stripling. His young friend, truly! let him look out, whether he have
not cause to term me something else ere he die. By God! I believe he
loves the girl, too! he looked black as a thunder-cloud over Dartmoor,
when she smiled on me! And my father—by my soul! I think he’s doting;
and her dainty ladyship, too! I’ll see if I cannot have her more eager
to hear me, than she has shown herself to-day. I will do it—I will, by
all that’s holy! Heaven! how it will spite them!”

Then he laid his head down on the pillow, and began to reflect how he
should act, and what were his chances of success in the villainy which
he meditated; and he even asked himself, with something of the boy’s
diffidence in his first encounter with woman, “but can I, can I win her
affection?” and vanity and the peculiar audacity of his race, of his own
character, made answer instantly, “Ay, can I? Am I not handsomer, and
cleverer, and more courtly; am I not higher born and higher bred, and
higher mannered, not only than that seafaring lout, but than any one she
has ever met withal? Ay, can I, and ay, will I!”

And in obedience to this last and base resolve, the worst and barest
that ever had crossed the boy’s mind, no sooner had they returned from
the adjoining room, after the conclusion of the evening meal, than he
contrived entirely to monopolize Theresa.

First, he asked her to play at chess with him; and then, after spending
a couple of hours, under the pretence of playing, but in reality gazing
into her blue eyes, and talking all sorts of wild, enthusiastical,
poetical romance, half earnest and half affected, he declared that his
head ached, and asked her to read aloud to him; and when she did so,
sitting without a thought of ill beside his pillow, while their fathers
were conversing in a low tone over the hearth, and Durzil was absent
making his preparations for the next day’s journey, he let his hand
fall, as if unconsciously, on hers, and after a little while, emboldened
by her unsuspicious calmness, imprisoned it between his fingers.

It might have been that she was so much engrossed in reading, for it was
Shakspeare’s sweet Rosalind that the boy had chosen for her subject,
that she was not aware that her hand was clasped in his. It might have
been, that, accustomed to its pressure, from his involuntary retention
of it during his lethargic sleep on the preceding day, she let it pass
as a matter of no consequence. It might have been, that almost
unsuspected by herself, a feeling of interest and affection, which might
easily be ripened into love, was already awakened in her bosom, for the
high-spirited, handsome, fearless boy, who in some measure owed his life
to her assistance.

At all events, she made no effort to withdraw it, but let it lie in his,
passive, indeed, and motionless, save for its quivering pulse, but warm
and soft and sensitive. And the boy waxing bolder, and moved into
earnestness by the charms of the position, ventured to press it once or
twice, as she read some moving line, and murmured praises of the
author’s beauties, and of the sweet, low voice that lent to those
beauties a more thrilling loveliness, and still the fairy fingers were
not withdrawn from his hold, though her eye met not his, nor any word of
hers answered his whispered praises.

At length a quick, strong step came suddenly to the door of the room,
and almost before there was time for thought, the door was thrown open,
and Durzil Olifaunt entered.

Instantly Theresa started at the sound, and strove to withdraw her hand,
while a deep blush of shame and agitation crimsoned her cheeks and brow,
and even overspread her snowy neck and bosom.

It was not, as that bold boy fancied at the time, in the vanity and
insolence of his uncorrected heart, that she knew all the time, that she
was allowing what it was wrong, and immodest, and unmaidenly to endure,
and that now she was afraid and ashamed, not of the error, but of the
detection.

No. In the perfect purity of her heart, in the half pitiful, half
protecting spirit which she felt toward Jasper, first as an invalid, and
then as a mere boy—for although he was, perhaps, a year her senior, who
does not know that boys in their eighteenth year are a full lustre
younger than girls of the same age—she had thought nothing, dreamed
nothing of impropriety in yielding her hand to the boy’s affectionate
grasp, until the step of the man, whose proffered love she had that very
day declined, led her to think intuitively what would be _his_ feelings,
and thence what must be Jasper’s, concerning that permitted license.

But the wily boy, for, so young as he was, he lacked neither sagacity to
perceive, nor audacity to profit by occasion, saw his advantage, and
holding his prize with a gentle yet firm pressure, without so much as
turning his eyes to Durzil, or letting it be known that he was aware of
his presence, raised it to his lips, and kissed it, saying, in a low,
earnest tone,

“I thank you, from my very soul, for your gentleness and kind attention,
dearest lady; your sweet voice has soothed me more than words can
express; there must be a magic in it, for it has charmed my headache
quite away, and divested me, moreover, from the least desire to seek
glory, or the gallows, with your bold cousin.”

The eyes of Durzil Bras-de-fer flashed fire, as he saw, as he heard what
was passing; and he made two or three strides forward, with a good deal
of his old impetuosity, both of look and gesture. His brow was knitted,
his hands clinched, and his lip compressed over his teeth, so closely
that it was white and bloodless.

But happily—or perhaps, unhappily—before he had time to commit
himself, he saw Theresa withdraw her hand so decidedly, and with so
perfect a majesty of gentle yet indignant womanhood, gazing upon the
audacious offender, as she did so, with eyes so full of wonder and
rebuke, that he could not doubt the sincerity or genuineness of her
anger.

Acquitting her, therefore, of all blame or coquetry, and, looking upon
Jasper as a mere boy, and worthy to be treated as such only, reflecting,
moreover, that he was for the time being, shielded by his infirmity, he
controlled himself, though not without an effort, and with a lip now
curling scornfully, and an eye rather contemptuous than angry, advanced
to the fireside, and took his seat beside his uncle and Sir Miles,
without taking the slightest notice of the others.

In the meantime, Theresa, after she had disengaged her hand from Jasper,
and cast upon him that one look of serene indignation, turned her back
on him quietly, in spite of some attempt at apology or explanation which
he began to utter. Walking slowly and composedly to the table, she laid
down on it the volume of Shakspeare which she had been reading to him,
and selecting some implements of feminine industry, moved over to the
group assembled round the hearth, and sat down on a low footstool,
between Durzil and her father.

No one but the two young men and herself were aware what had passed; and
she, though annoyed by Jasper’s forwardness, having, as she thought,
effectually repelled it, had already dismissed it from her mind as a
thing worth no further consideration. Durzil, on the other hand, though
attaching far more importance to his action, saw plainly that this was
not the time or the place for making any comment on it, even if he had
been capable of adding to Theresa’s embarrassment; while Jasper,
mortified and frustrated by the lady’s scornful self-possession, and the
free-trader’s manifest contempt, had no better mode of concealing his
disappointment, than by sinking back upon his pillow, as if fatigued or
in pain, and feigning to fall gradually asleep—a feint which, as is
oftentimes the case, terminated at last in reality.

Meanwhile, the two old men continued to talk quietly, in rather a
subdued tone, of old times and the events of their youth, and thence of
the varied incidents which had checkered their lives, during the long
space of time since they had been friends and comrades, with many a
light and shadow. And as they, garrulous, as is the wont of the aged and
infirm, and “_laudatores temporis acti_,” found pleasure even in the
retrospect on things, which in their day were painful, the young man sat
beside them silent, oppressed with the burthen of present pain, and yet
more by the anticipation of worse suffering to be endured thereafter.

Nearly an hour passed thus, without a single word being exchanged
between Durzil and Theresa; he musing deeply, with his head buried in
his hands, as he bent over the embers of the wood fire, which the
vicinity of the cottage to the water’s edge rendered agreeable even on
summer evenings, and she plying her needle as assiduously as if she were
dependent on its exercise for her support.

Several times, indeed, she looked up at him with her candid, innocent
face, and her beautiful blue eye clear and unclouded, as if she wished
to catch his attention. But he was all unconscious of her movement, and
continued to ponder gloomily on many things that had, and yet more that
had not, any existence beyond the limits of his own fitful fancy.

At length tired of waiting for his notice, the rather that the night was
wearing onward, she arose from her seat, folding up her work as she did
so, and laid her hand lightly on her cousin’s shoulder—

“And are you really going to leave us to-morrow, Durzil?” she said,
softly.

“For a few days only,” he answered, raising his head, and meeting her
earnest eye with a cold, sad smile. “I am going to ride down to-morrow
afternoon as far as Hexwerthy, where I will sleep, and so get into
Plymouth betimes the following day.”

“And when shall you come back to us?”

“I shall not stay an hour longer than I can avoid, Theresa; and I think
that in three days I may be able to arrange all that I have to do; if
so, you may look for me within the week—at furthest, I shall be here in
ten days.”

“And how long may we count on keeping you here, then? It will be long, I
fear, before we shall meet again.”

“The ship cannot be fit for sea within three weeks, Theresa, or it may
be a month; and I shall stay here, be sure, until the last moment. But
as all mortal matters are uncertain to a proverb, and as none of us can
say when, or if ever, we shall meet again, and as I have much to say to
you before I go to sea this time, will you not walk in the garden with
me for an hour before breakfast to-morrow?”

“Surely I will. How can you doubt it, Durzil?”

“I do not doubt it. And then I can give you my opinion about the young
nightingales, which we forgot, after all, this morning. I dare say they
will turn out to be hedge sparrows.”

“I will be there soon after the sun is up, Durzil, and that I may be so,
good-night, all,” and with the word, kissing her father’s brow, and
giving her hand affectionately to Durzil, she courtesied to the old
cavalier, and left the room without so much as looking toward Jasper,
who was, however, already fast asleep, and unconscious of all sublunary
matters.

Her rising, though she had not joined in the conversation for the last
hour or more, broke up the company, and in a few minutes they had all
withdrawn, each to his own apartment; and Jasper was left alone, with
the brands dying out one by one on the hearth-stone, and an old tabby
cat dozing near the andirons; this night he had no other watchers, and
none were there to hear or see what befell him during the hours of
darkness.

But had there been any one present in that old apartment, he would have
seen that the sleep of the young man was strangely restless and
perturbed, that the sweat-drops stood in large cold beads upon his brow,
that his features were from time to time fearfully distorted, as if by
pain and horror, and that he tossed his arms to and fro, as if he were
wrestling with some powerful but intangible oppressor.

From time to time, moreover, he uttered groans and strangely murmured
sounds, and a few articulate words; but these so unconnected, and at so
long intervals asunder, that no human skill could have combined them
into any thing like intelligible sentences. At length with a wild,
shrill cry, he started up erect in his bed, his hair bristling with
terror, and the cold sweat flowing off his face like rain-drops.

“Oh, God!” he cried, “avert—defend! Horror! horror!” Then raising his
hands slowly to his brow, he felt himself, grasped his arm, and sought
for the pulsations of his heart, as if he were laboring to satisfy
himself that he was awake.

At length, he murmured, “It was a dream! The Lord be praised! it was but
a dream! and yet, how terrible, how vivid. Even now, I can scarce
believe that I was not awake and saw it.”

But as his eye ran over the objects to which it had become accustomed
during the last days, and which were now indistinctly visible in the
glimmering darkness of a fine summer night, he became fully satisfied
that he had been indeed asleep; and with a muttered prayer, he settled
himself down again on the pillow, and composed himself to sleep once
more.

He had not slept, however, above half an hour before the same painful
symptoms recurred; and after even a longer and more agonizing struggle
than the first, he again woke, panting, horror-stricken, pale and almost
paralyzed with superstitious terror.

“It was!” he gasped, “it was—it must have been reality. I saw her, as I
did last night, tangible, face to face; but, oh God! what a glare of
horror in those beautiful blue eyes—what a gory spot on that smooth,
white brow—what agony—what supplication in every lovely feature. And
he, he who dealt the blow—I could not see the face, but the dress, the
figure, nay, the seat on horseback—great God! they were all mine own!”

He paused for a long time, meditating deeply, and casting furtive
glances around the large old-fashioned room, as though he expected to
see some of the great heavy shadows which brooded in the dim angles and
irregular recesses of the walls, detach themselves from their lurking
places, in the guise of human forms disembodied, and come forth to
confront him.

After a while, however, his naturally strong intellect and
characteristic audacity led him to discard the idea of supernatural
influence in the appalling vision, which had now twice so cruelly
disturbed him. Still, so great had been the suffering and torture of his
mind during the conflict of the sleeping body and the sleepless
intellect, that he actually dreaded the return of slumber, lest that
dread phantom should return with it; and he therefore exerted himself to
keep awake, and to arm his mind against the insidious stealing on of
sleep, from very fear of what should follow.

But the very efforts which he made to banish the inclination, wearied
the mind, and induced what he would most avoid; and within an hour he
was again unconscious of all external sights and sounds, again terribly
alive to those inward sensations which had already terrified him almost
beyond endurance.

This time the trance was shorter, but from the symptoms which appeared
on his features, fiercer and stronger than before; nor, as before, when
he awoke, did the impression pass away which had been made on him before
his eyes were opened. No; as he started up erect, and gazed wildly,
scarce as yet half awake, around him, the first thing that met, or
seemed to meet, his staring eyes, was a gray, misty shadow, standing
relieved by a dark mass of gloom in the farthest angle of the chamber.
Gradually, as he stared at it with a fascinated gaze, which, had it been
to save his life, he could not have withdrawn, the shape, if shape it
were, drew nearer, nearer, with a slow, gliding, ghastly motion.

The moon had by this time arisen, and cast a feeble, ineffectual light
through the mass of tangled foliage which curtained the large
diamond-paned casements of the cottage, streaming in a dim, misty ray
across the centre of the chamber. Directly in the middle of this pallid
halo, as if it had been a silver glory, paused, or appeared to pause,
that thin transparent form—so bodiless, indeed, it seemed, that the
outlines of the things which stood beyond it, were visible, as if seen
through a gauzy curtain. A cloud passed over the moon’s face, and all
was gloom; yet still the boy’s eyes _felt_ the presence of that
disembodied visitant, which they could now no longer distinguish in the
darkness.

At this moment, as if to add a real terror to that which, even if
unreal, needed no addition, the cat, which hitherto had been sleeping
undisturbedly by the warm ashes on the hearth, uttered an unusual
plaintive cry, most unlike to the natural note of her species, whether
of pleasure or of anger, and rushed at two or three long bounds, to the
bed on which the boy was sitting up in voiceless horror. Her eyes glared
in the darkness, like coals of livid fire, her bristles were set up like
the quills of the porcupine, her tail was outspread, till it almost
resembled a fox’s brush.

The cloud drifted onward, and the moon shone out brighter than before;
and there he still saw, that tall white shape, clearer, distincter,
stronger than when he first beheld it. The cat cowered down upon the
pillow by his side, with a low wailing cry of terror, her back,
bristling in wrath but now, was humbly lowered, dread of something
unnatural had quelled all her savage instincts.

Clearer and clearer waxed the vision, and now he might mark the delicate
symmetrical proportions of the figure, and now the pale white outlines
of the lovely face. It _was_ Theresa Allan. Yet the fair features were
set in a sort of rigid cataleptic horror, full of dread, full of agony
and consternation; and the blue eyes glared, fixed and glassy, without
speculation; and right in the centre of the brow there glowed, like a
sanguine star, a great spot of gore.

The thing seemed to raise its arm, and point with a gesture of majestic
menace, right toward the terrified beholder. Then the white lips were
parted with a slow circular distortion, showing the pearly teeth within,
and——if a voice came forth from those ghastly lips, Jasper St. Aubyn
knew it not, for he had sunk back on his pillow—if, indeed, he had
ever, as he believed to the day of his death, raised himself up from
it—in a deep trance, from which he passed into a dead, heavy, dreamless
stupor, which continued undisturbed until the sun was high in the
heavens, and the whole household were afoot, and busied about their
usual avocations.

In the meantime, she whose image, whether in truth it was _an eidolon_,
or merely the idea of a diseased mind and preoccupied spirit, had been
so busy during the hours of darkness, had awakened all refreshed by
light and innocent slumbers, with the first peep of day, and arising
from her couch had descended into the garden, still half enveloped in
the dewy vapors of the summer night, half glimmering in the slant
radiance of the new-risen sun.

She was the first at her appointment, for Durzil had not yet made his
appearance, and she walked to and fro awaiting him, among the flowery
thickets and sweet scented shrubberies all bathed in the copious
night-dews, half wondering, half-guessing, what it could be that he
should so earnestly desire to communicate. And as she walked, she
considered with herself all that had occurred during the last three
days, and the more she considered, the less was she able to comprehend
the workings of her own mind, or to explain to herself wherefore it was
that she could not divest herself of the idea that the crisis of her
life, the fate of her heart was at hand.

That she had rejected Durzil’s proffered love, his honest, manly love,
she knew that she ought not to regret, for she felt surely that she
could not love him in return as he ought, as he deserved to be loved;
and yet she did almost regret it. Then she began to ask herself why she
did not, why she _could_ not love him, endowed eminently as he was with
many high and noble qualities; and she was soon answered, when she
considered how far he fell short of her standard, in mental and
intellectual culture, in all that pertained to the secret sympathies of
the heart, to the kindred tastes and sentiments, to that community of
hopes and wishes, which, under the head of _eadem velle atque nolle_,
the Roman philosophical historian has declared to be the sole base of
true friendship, might he not better have said of true love.

Thence by an easy and natural transition the girl’s thoughts turned to
the young stranger—to his magnificent person and striking intellectual
beauty—to his singular and original character, so audacious, so full of
fiery and rebellious self-will, so confident in his own powers, so
daring, almost insolent toward man, and yet, at the same time, so
fraught with gentle and romantic fancies, so rapt by romance or poetry,
so liable to all swift impressions of the senses, so humble, yet with so
proud and self-arrogating a humility toward woman.

She thought of the tones of his beautifully modulated voice, of the
expression of his deep, clear, gray eye; she remembered how the one had
melted, as it were, almost timorously in her ear, how the other had
dwelt almost boldly on her face, yet with a boldness which seemed meant
almost as homage.

She mused on these things; and then paused to reflect how helplessly and
deathfully he had lain at her feet, when he was drawn forth from that
deep red whirlpool; and how so sickly those fine eyes swam when she
first beheld them. How small a thing would have extinguished, and
forever, the faint spark of life which then feebly fluttered in his
bosom; how child-like he had yielded himself to her ministration, and
with how piteous yet grateful an expression he had acknowledged, when he
awoke from his first trance-like stupor, midway as it were between life
and death, the gentleness of her protection.

Most true it is, that pity is akin to love; where pity, as is seldom the
case from woman toward man, can exist apart from something approaching
to contempt; where it is called forth by the consequences neither of
physical nor mental weakness. Still more is it the province and the part
of woman to love whom they have protected.

With both sexes, I believe that to have conferred, rather than to have
received kindness—to be owed rather than to owe gratitude—is conducive
to the growth of kindly feeling, of friendship, of affection, love! But
with a true woman, to have been dependent on her for support, to have
looked up into her eyes for aid on the sick-bed, for sympathy in mortal
sorrow, to have revived by her nursing, to have been consoled by her
comforting—these are the truest and most direct key to her affections.

Theresa thought of all these things, and as she did so, her bosom heaved
almost unconsciously a sigh, and a tear rose unbidden to her eye. She
almost loved Jasper St. Aubyn.

Again, the recollection of his boldness on the previous evening, of his
half forcible seizure of her hand, of the kiss he had so daringly
imprinted on her soft fingers, of the too meaning words which he had
addressed to her, and of the tone, which conveyed even more of
consciousness and confidence than the words themselves, all rushed at
once upon her mind; and, though she was alone, she started, and her face
crimsoned at the mere memory of what she half felt as an indignity.

“And could he think me,” she murmured to herself, “so light, so vain, so
easy to be won, that he dare treat me thus at almost a first interview?
or was it but the rashness, the imprudence, the buoyancy of extreme
youth, inspired by sudden love, and encouraged by his own headstrong
character.” She paused a moment, and then said almost aloud, “Oh, no,
no, I will not believe it.”

“And what will you not believe, Theresa?” said a clear, firm voice,
close behind her, “what is it that you are so energetically determined
not to believe, my pretty cousin?”

She started, not well pleased that even Durzil should have thus, as it
were, stolen upon her privacy, and overheard what was intended for no
mortal ear. Theresa was as guileless as any being of mortal mould may
be; but even the most artless woman cannot be altogether free from some
touch of instinctive artifice—that innocent and gentle guile is to
woman what nature has bestowed on all, even the humblest of its
creatures, her true weapon of defence, her shield against the brute
tyranny of man. And Theresa was a woman. She replied, therefore, without
an instant’s hesitation, although her voice did falter somewhat, and her
cheeks burn, as she spoke—

“That you are angry with me, cousin Durzil.” But then, as she felt his
cold, clear, dark eye how piercingly it dwelt upon her features,
reading, or striving to read, her very soul, she continued, seeing at
once the necessity of placing him on the defensive, so as to turn the
tide of aggressive warfare, “but _I_ am angry with _you_, I assure you;
nor do I think it at all like you, Durzil, or at all like a true
cavalier, as you pretend to be, first to keep a lady waiting for you, I
don’t know how long, here alone, and then to creep upon her, like an
Indian, or a spy, and surprise what little secrets she might be turning
over in her own mind. You must have trodden lightly on purpose, or I
should have heard your step. I did not look for this at your hand,
cousin Durzil.”

He still gazed at her with the same dark, fixed, piercing glance,
without answering her a word; and, although conscious of no wrong, she
met his gaze with her calm, candid, truthful eye, she could not endure
his suspicious look, but was fluttered, and blushed deeply, and was so
much embarrassed, that had not pride and anger come to her aid, she
would have burst into tears. But they did come to her aid, and she cried
with a quivering voice and a flashing eye—

“For what do you look at me so, Durzil? I do not like it—I will not
bear it! You have no right to treat me thus! it is not kind, nor
courteous, nor even manly! If it be to brow-beat me, and tyrannize over
me, that you asked me to meet you here, I could have thanked you to
spare me the request. But I shall leave you to yourself, and return
home; and so, good-morrow to you, and better breeding, and a better
heart, too, cousin Durzil!”

But though she said she was going, she made no movement to do so, but
hesitated, waiting for his answer.

“You must be greatly changed, Theresa,” he said bitterly, “to take
offence at so slight a cause, or to speak to me in such a tone. But you
_are_ greatly changed, and there’s an end of it.”

“I am not changed at all,” replied the girl, still chafing at the
recollection of that scrutinizing eye, which she perhaps felt the more,
because conscious that her own reply had not been perfectly sincere.
“But I do not allow your right to pry meanly into my secret thoughts, or
to catechise me concerning my words, or to accuse me of falsehood, when
I answer you.”

“Accuse you of falsehood, Theresa! Who ever dreamed of doing so?”

“Your eye did so, sir,” she replied. “When I told you that I was
determined ‘not to believe that you were angry with me,’ you fixed your
glance upon me with the expression of a pedagogue, who having caught a
child lying would terrify it into truth. I am no child, I assure you,
Durzil, nor are you _yet_ my master. Think as you may about it.”

It was now Durzil’s turn to be confused, for he could not deny that she
had construed the meaning of his look aright; and would not, so proud
was he and so resolute, either deny or apologize for what was certainly
an act of rudeness.

After a moment’s pause, however, he looked up at her from under downcast
eyelids, with a look of defiance mingled with distrust, and answered
bluntly,

“I do not believe that _was_ your meaning, or that you were thinking
about me at all.”

“And what if it were not? Am I bound, I pray you, to be thinking of
nothing but you? I must have little enough to think of, if it were so.”

“You might at least have told me so much frankly.”

“I thank you, cousin Durzil,” she made answer, more proudly, more firmly
than ever he had heard her speak before. “I thank you, for teaching me a
lesson, though neither very kindly, nor exactly as a generous gentleman
should teach a lady. But you are perfectly correct in your surmises,
sir. I was _not_ thinking of you at all; no more, sir, than if you were
not in existence, and if I answered you, as I did, sir, _falsely_—yes!
_falsely_ is the word!—it is because, in the first place, you had no
right to ask me the question you did, and, in the second, because I did
not choose to answer it! Now, cousin, allow _me_ to teach you
something—for you have something yet to learn, wise as you are, about
us women. If you ask a lady unmannerly questions, hereafter, and she
turn them off by a flippant joke, or an unmeaning _falsehood_,
understand that _you_ have been very rude, and that she does not wish to
be so likewise, by rebuking your impertinence. Now, do you comprehend
me?”

“Perfectly, madam, perfectly. You have made marvelous strides of late,
upon my honor! Yesterday morning an unsophisticated country maiden—this
morning a courtly, quick-witted, manœuvring, fine lady! God send you,
much good of the change, though I doubt it. I can see all, read all,
plainly enough now—poor Durzil Bras-de-fer is not high enough, I trow,
for my dainty lady! Perchance, when he is farther off, he may be better
liked, and more needed. At all events, I did not look for this at your
hands, Theresa, on the last morning, too, that we shall spend together
for so long a time.”

Angry as she was, and indignant at the dictatorial manner he had assumed
toward her, these last words disarmed her in a moment. A tear rose to
her eyes, and she held out her hand to him kindly.

“You are right, Durzil,” she said, “and I was wrong to be so angry. But
you vexed me, and wounded me by your manner. I am sorry; I ought to have
remembered that you were going to leave us, and that you have some cause
to be grieved and irritable. Pardon me, Durzil, and forget what I said
hastily. We must not quarrel, for we have no friends save one another,
and my dear old father.”

But Durzil’s was no placable mind, nor one that could divest itself
readily of a preconceived idea. “Oh!” he replied, “for that, fair young
ladies never lack friends. For every old one they cast off they win two
new ones. See, if it be not so, Theresa. Is it not so with you?”

She looked at him reproachfully, but softly, and then burst into tears.
“You are ungenerous,” she said, “ungenerous. But all men, I suppose, are
alike in this—that they can feel no friendship for a woman. So long as
they hope for her love, all is submission on their part, and humility,
and gentleness, and lip-service—once they cannot win that, all is
bitterness and persecution. I did not look for this at _your_ hand! But
_I_ will not quarrel with you, Durzil. I dealt frankly with you yester
morning; I have dealt affectionately with you ever; I will deal tenderly
and forgivingly with you now. I only wish that you had not sought this
interview with me, the only object of which appears to have been the
embittering the last hours of our intercourse, and the endeavoring to
wring and wound my heart. But I—”

“If you had dealt frankly with me,” he interrupted her, very angrily,
“you would have told me honestly that you loved another.”

“Loved another! What do you mean? What other?”

So evident was the truth, the sincerity of her astonishment, that
jealousy itself was rebuked and put to silence in the young man’s bosom;
and he endeavored to avoid or change the subject. But the womanly
indignation of the fair girl was now awakened; her pride had been
touched; her delicacy wounded; her sensibilities availed in the
tenderest point.

“Leave me!” she said, after a little pause, during which she, in her
turn gazing upon him, now bewildered and abashed, with eyes of serene
wonder, not all unmingled with contempt—“Nay! not another word—leave
me—begone! You are not worthy of a woman’s love—you are not worthy to
be treated or regarded as a man. Leave me, I say, and trouble me no
more. Poor, weak, mean-spirited, vain, jealous, and ungenerous, begone!
You know—no man knows better—the falsehood of the last words you have
spoken. No man knows better their unfeelingness, their ungenerous
cruelty. But if I had—if I had loved another—in what does that concern
you? In what am I responsible to you for my likings or dislikings? Once
and for all be it said, I love you not—should not love you, were you
the only one of your sex on the face of God’s earth—and I pray God to
help and protect the woman who shall love you—if ever you be loved of
woman, which I for one believe not—for she shall love the veriest
tyrant that ever tortured a fond heart, under the plea of loving.”

“I go,” he replied. “I am answered, once and for all. I go, and may
_you_ never need my aid, my forgiveness.”

“Forgiveness!” she exclaimed, with a contemptuous glance. “Forgiveness!
I know not what _you_ have to forgive! But you should rather pray that I
_may_ have need of them; then may _you_ have the pleasure of refusing me
at my need.”

“Ah! it is thus you think of me. It is time, then, that I should leave
you. Fare you well, Theresa.”

“There is no need for farewells at present. The day is early yet; and I
trust still to see your temper changed before you set forth on your
journey. It would grieve my father sorely that you should leave us
thus.”

“He will not know how I leave you. He will see me no more for
years—perhaps never!”

“What do you mean?”

“That I shall mount my horse within this half hour, and return no more
until I shall have twice crossed the Atlantic. So fare you well,
Theresa.”

“Fare you well, Durzil, if it must be so. And God bless you, and send
you a better mind. You will be sorry for this one day. There is my hand,
fare you well; and rest assured of this, return when you may, you will
find me the same Theresa.”

He took her hand, and wrung it hard. “Farewell,” he said. “Farewell; and
God grant that when I do return, I find you the wife, and not the
mistress, of Jasper St. Aubyn.”

Ungenerous and bitter to the last, he winged the shaft at random, which
he hoped would pierce the deepest, which he trusted would prevent the
consummation he most dreaded—that she _should be_ the wife of the boy
whom he had saved, whom he now hated.

The other contingency, at which he had hinted basely, unmanly, brutally,
he knew to be impossible—but he knew also, that the surmise would gall
her beyond endurance. That, that was the cruel, the unworthy object of
the last words Durzil Bras-de-fer ever exchanged in this world with
Theresa Allan.

He turned on his heel, and, without looking back once, strode through
the garden, with all his better feelings lost and swallowed up in
bitterness and hatred; entered his own apartment, and there wrote a few
lines to his uncle, to the effect that in order to avoid the pain of a
parting, and the sorrows of a last adieu, he had judged it for the
wisest to depart suddenly and unawares; and that he should not return to
Widecomb until his voyage should be ended.

Then, leaving the house, where he had passed so many a happy hour, in
hot and passionate resentment, he mounted his horse and rode away at a
hard gallop across the hills toward Hexwerthy and Plymouth.

The last words he uttered had gone to Theresa’s heart like a death-shot.
She did not speak, or even sigh, as she heard them, but pressed her hand
hard on her breast, and fell speechless and motionless on the dewy
greensward.

He, engrossed by his selfish rage, and deafened to the sound of her fall
by the beatings of his own hard heart, stalked off unconscious what had
befallen her; and she lay there, insensible, until the servant girl,
missing her at the breakfast hour, found her there cold, and, as at
first she believed, lifeless.

She soon revived, indeed, from the swoon; but the excitement and
agitation of that scene brought on a slow, lingering fever; and weeks
elapsed ere she again left her chamber. When she did quit it, the fresh
green leaves of summer had put on their sere and yellow hue, the autumn
flowers were fast losing their last brilliancy, the hoar-frosts lay
white, in the early mornings, over the turf walks of her garden, ice had
been seen already on the great pool above the fords of Widecomb, and
every thing gave notice that the dreary days of winter were approaching,
and even now at hand.

The northwest winds howled long and hollow over the open hills and
heathery wolds around Widecomb Manor, and ever as their wild melancholy
wail fell on the ears of Theresa, as she sat by her now lonely hearth,
they awoke a thought of him, the playmate of her happy childhood, from
whom she had parted, not as friends and playmates should part, and who
was now ploughing the far Atlantic, perhaps never to return.

A shadow had fallen upon her brow; a gloom upon her young and happy
life.

And where was he who unconsciously, though not perhaps unintentionally,
had been the cause of the cloud which had arisen, and whence that
shadow, that gloom? Where was Jasper St. Aubyn?


                                PART II.


                               CHAPTER I.

               A change came o’er the spirit of my dream.
               The lady of his love was wed with one
               Who did not love her better.
                                                   BYRON.

Two years had passed away since Durzil Bras-de-fer set sail on the
Virginia voyage, and from that day no tidings had been heard of him in
England.

In the meantime, changes, dark melancholy changes, had altered every
thing at Widecomb. The two old men, whom we last saw conversing
cheerfully of times long gone, and past joys unforgotten, had both
fallen asleep, to wake no more but to immortality. Sir Miles St. Aubyn
slept with his fathers in the bannered and escutcheoned chapel adjoining
the Hall, wherein he had spent so many, and those the happiest, of his
days; while William Allan—he had preceded his ancient friend, his old
rival, but a few weeks on their last journey—lay in the quiet village
church-yard, beneath the shade of the great lime-trees, among the leaves
of which he had loved to hear the hum of the bees in his glad boyhood.
The leaves waved as of old, and twinkled in the sunshine, and the music
of the reveling bees was blithe as ever, but the eye that had rejoiced
at the calm scenery, the ear that had delighted in the rural sound, was
dim, and deaf forever.

Happy—happy they. Whom no more cares should reach, no more anxieties,
forever—who now no more had hopes to be blighted, joys to be tortured
into sorrows, and, worst of all, affections to breed the bitterest
griefs, and make calamity of so long life. Happy, indeed, thrice happy!

There was a pleasant parlor, with large oriel windows looking out upon
the terrace of Widecomb Hall, and over the beautiful green chase,
studded with grand old oaks, down to the deep ravine through which the
trout stream rushed, in which the present lord of that fair demesne had
so nearly perished at the opening of my tale.

And in that pleasant parlor, within the embrasure of one of the great
oriels, gazing out anxiously over the lovely park, now darkening with
the long shadows of a sweet summer evening, there stood as beautiful a
being as ever gladdened the eye of friend, husband, or lover, on his
return from brief absence home.

It was Theresa—Allan no longer, but St. Aubyn; and with the higher rank
which she had so deservedly acquired, she had acquired, too, a higher
and more striking style of beauty. Her slender, girlish stature had
increased in height, and expanded in fullness, roundness, symmetry,
until the delicate and somewhat fragile maiden had been matured into the
perfect, full-blown woman.

Her face also was lovelier than of old; it had a deeper, a more
spiritual meaning. Love had informed it, and experience. And the genius,
dormant before, and unsuspected save by the old fond father, sat
enthroned visibly on the pale, thoughtful brow, and looked out
gloriously from those serene, large eyes, filled as they were to
overflowing with a clear, lustrous, tranquil light, which revealed to
the most casual and thoughtless observers, the purity, the truth, the
whiteness of the soul within.

But if you gazed on her more closely,

        You saw her at a nearer view
        A spirit, yet a woman too.

You saw that how pure, how calm, how innocent so-ever, she was not yet
exempt from the hopes, the fears, the passions, and the pains of
womanhood.

The woman was more lovely than the girl, was wiser, greater, perhaps
better—alas! was she happier?

She had been now nearly two years a wife, though but within the last
twelve months acknowledged and installed as such in her husband’s house.
It had been a dark mystery, her love, the child of sorrow and
concealment, although she might thank her own true heart, guided by
principle, and lighted by a higher star than any earthly passion, even
the love of God, it had not been the source of shame.

Artfully, yet enthusiastically, had that bold, brilliant, fascinating
boy laid siege to her affections; and soon, by dint of kindred tastes,
and feelings, and pursuits, he had succeeded in winning the whole
perfect love of that pure, overflowing soul.

She loved him with that fervor, that devotion, of which women alone are
perhaps capable, and of women, only those who are gifted with that
extreme sensibility, that exquisite organization, which, rendering them
the most charming, the most fascinating, and the most susceptible of
their sex, too often renders them the least happy.

And he, too, loved her—as well, perhaps, as one of his character and
temperament could love any thing, except himself; he loved her
_passionately_; he admired her beauty, her grace, her delicacy, beyond
measure. He understood and appreciated her exquisite taste, her
brilliancy, her feminine and gentle genius. He was not happy when he was
absent from her side; he could not endure the idea that she should love,
or even smile upon another, he coveted the possession of a creature so
beautiful, a soul so powerful, and at the same time so loving. Above
all, he was proud to be loved by such a being.

But beyond this he no more loved her, than the child loves its toy. He
held her only in his selfishness of soul, even before his passion had

                    “Spent as yet its novel force,
        Something better than his dog, a little dearer than his horse.”

But he knew nothing, felt nothing, understood nothing of her higher,
better self; he saw nothing of her inner light—guessed nothing of what
a treasure he had won.

He would have sacrificed nothing of his pleasures, nothing of his
prejudices, nothing of his pride, had such a sacrifice been needed to
make her the happiest of women. While she would have laid down her life
for the mere delight of gaining him one moment’s joy—would have
sacrificed all that she had, or hoped to have, save honor, faith and
virtue. And to yield these he never asked her.

No! in the wildest dream of his reckless, unprincipled imagination, he
never fancied to himself the possibility of tempting her to lawless
love. In the very boldest of his audacious flights, he never would have
dared to whisper one loose thought, one questionable wish in the
maiden’s ear. It had, perhaps, been well he had done so—for on that
instant, as the night-mists melt away and leave the firmament pure and
transparent at the first glance of the great sun, the cloud of passion
which obscured her mental vision would have been scattered and dispersed
from her clear intellect by the first word that had flashed on her soul
conviction of his baseness.

But whether the wish ever crossed his mind or not, he never gave it
tongue, nor did she even once suspect it.

Still he had wooed her secretly—laying the blame on his father’s pride,
his father’s haughty and high ambition, which he insisted would revolt
at the bare idea of his wedding with any lady, who could not point to
the quarterings of a long, noble line of ancestry; he had prevailed on
her, first to conceal their love, and at length to consent to a secret
marriage.

It was long, indeed, ere he could bring her to agree even to that
clandestine step; nor, had her father lived but a few weeks longer,
would he have done so ever.

The old man died, however, suddenly, and at the very moment when, though
she knew it not, his life was most necessary to his daughter’s welfare.
He was found dead in his bed, after one of those strange, mysterious
seizures, to which he had for many years been subject, and during which
he had appeared to be endowed with something that approached nearly to a
knowledge of the future. Although, if such were, indeed, the case, it
was scarce less wonderful that on the passing away of the dark fit, he
seemed to have forgotten all that he had seen and enunciated of what
should be thereafter.

Be this, however, as it may, he was found by his unhappy child, dead,
and already cold; but with his limbs composed so naturally, and his fine
benevolent features wearing so calm and peaceful an expression, that it
was evident he had passed away from this world of sin and sorrow, during
his sleep, without a pang or a struggle. Never did face of mortal
sleeper give surer token of a happy and glorious awakening.

But he was gone, and she was alone, friendless, helpless and
unprotected.

How friendless, how utterly destitute and helpless, she knew not, nor
had even suspected, until the last poor relics of her only kinsman, save
he who was a thousand leagues aloof on the stormy ocean, had been
consigned to the earth, whence they had their birth and being. Then,
when his few papers were examined, and his affairs scrutinized by his
surviving, though now fast declining friend, St. Aubyn, it appeared that
he had been supported only by a life-annuity, which died with himself,
and that he had left nothing but the cottage at the fords, with the few
acres of garden-ground, and the slender personal property on the
premises, to his orphan child.

It was rendered probable by some memoranda and brief notes, found among
his papers, the greater part of which were occupied by abstruse
mathematical problems, and yet wilder astrological calculations, that he
had looked forward to the union of his daughter with the youth whom he
had brought up as his own son, and whose ample means, as well as his
affection for the lovely girl, left no doubt of his power and
willingness to become her protector.

What he had observed, during his sojourn at the cottage, led old Sir
Miles, however, who had assumed as an act of duty, no less than of
pleasure, the character of executor to his old friend, to suspect that
the simple-minded sage had in some sort reckoned without his host; and
that on one side, at least, there would be found insuperable objections
to his views for Theresa’s future life. And in this opinion he was
confirmed immediately by a conversation which he had with the poor girl,
so soon as the first poignant agony of grief had passed from her mind.

In this state of affairs, an asylum at the manor was offered by the old
cavalier, and accepted by the orphan with equal frankness, but with a
most unequal sense of obligation—Sir Miles regarding his part in the
transaction as a thing of course, Theresa looking on it as an action of
the most exalted and extraordinary generosity.

In truth, it had occurred already to the mind of the old knight, so soon
as he was satisfied within himself that Theresa’s affections were not
given to her wild and dangerous cousin, that he would gladly see her the
wife of his own almost idolized boy. For, though of no exalted or
ennobled lineage, she was of gentle blood, of an honorable parentage,
which had been long established in the county, and which, if fallen in
fortunes, had never lost caste, or been degraded, as he would assuredly
have deemed it, by participation in any mechanical or mercantile
pursuit. He had seen enough of courts and courtiers to learn their
hollowness, and all the empty falsehood of their gorgeous show—he had
mingled enough in the great world to be convinced that real happiness
was not to be sought in the hurly-burly of its perilous excitements, and
incessant strife; and that which would have rendered him the happiest,
would have been to see Jasper established, tranquilly, and at his ease,
with domestic bonds to ensure the permanency of his happiness, before
his own time should come, as the Lord of Widecomb.

And such were his views when he prevailed on Theresa to let the House in
the Woods be her home, until at least such time as news could be
received of her cousin; who, certainly, whatever might be the relative
state of their affections, would never suffer her to want a home or a
protector.

He had observed that Jasper was struck deeply by the charms of the sweet
girl; he knew, although he had affected not to know it, that, under the
pretence of fishing or shooting excursions, he had been in the almost
daily habit of visiting her, since the accident which had led to their
acquaintance; and he was, above all, well assured that the girl loved
him with all the deep, unfathomable devotion of which such hearts as
hers alone are capable.

Well pleased was he, therefore, to see the beautiful being established
in the halls of which he hoped to see her, ere long, the mistress; and
if he did not declare his wishes openly to either on the subject, it was
that he was so well aware of his son’s headstrong and willful temper,
that he knew him fully capable of refusing peremptorily the very thing
which he most desired, if proffered to him as a boon, much more urged
upon him as the desire of a third party—which he was certain to regard
as an interference with his free will and self-regulation—while, at the
same time he feared to alarm Theresa’s delicacy, by anticipating the
progress of events.

Thus, with a heart overflowing with affection for that wild, willful,
passionate boy, released from the only tie of obedience or restraint
that could have bound her, poor Theresa was delivered over, fettered as
it were, hand and foot, to the perilous influence of Jasper’s artifices,
and the scarce less dangerous suggestions of her own affections.

It was strange that, quick as she was and clever, even beyond her sex’s
wonted penetration, where matters of the heart are concerned, Theresa
never suspected that the old cavalier had long perceived and sanctioned
their growing affection. But idolizing Jasper as she did, and believing
him all that was high and generous and noble, seeing that all his
external errors tended to the side of rash, hasty impulse, never to
calculation or deceit, she saw every thing, as it were, through his
eyes, and was easily induced by him to believe that all his father’s
kindness and father-like attention to her slightest wish, arose only
from his love for her lost parent, and compassion for her sad
abandonment; nay, further, he insisted that the least suspicion of their
mutual passion would lead to their instant and eternal separation.

It was lamentable, that a being so bright, so excellent as she,
believing that such was the case, and bound as she was by the closest
obligations, the dearest gratitude to that good old man, should have
consented, even for a moment, to deceive him, much more to frustrate his
wishes in a point so vital.

But she was very young—she had been left without the training of a
mother’s watchful heart, without the supervision of a mother’s earnest
eye—she was endowed marvelously with those extreme sensibilities which
are invariably a part of that high nervous organization, ever connected
with poetical genius; she loved Jasper with a devotedness, a singleness,
and at the same time a consuming heat of passion, which scarcely could
be believed to exist in one so calm, so self-possessed, and so
innocently-minded—and, above all, she had none else in the wide world
on whom to fix her affections.

And the boy profited by this; and with the sharpness of an intellect,
which, if far inferior to hers in depth and real greatness, was as far
superior to it in worldly selfishness and instinctive shrewdness, played
upon her nervous temperament, till he could make each chord of her
secret soul thrill to his touch, as if they had been the keys of a
stringed instrument.

The hearts of the young who love, must ever, must naturally resent all
interference of the aged, who would moderate or oppose their love, as
cold, intrusive tyranny; and thus, with plausible and artful sophistry,
abetted by the softness of her treacherous heart, too willing to be
deceived, he first led her to regard his father as opposed to the wishes
of that true love, which, for all the great poet knew or had heard,
“never did run smooth,” and thence to resent that opposition as unkind,
unjust, tyrannical; and thence—alas! for Theresa!—to deceive the good
old man, her best friend on earth—ay, to deceive herself.

It is not mine to palliate, much less to justify her conduct. I have but
to relate a too true tale; and in relating it, to show, in so far as I
can, the mental operations, the self-deceptions, and the workings of
passion—from which not even the best and purest of mankind are
exempt—by which an innocent and wonderfully constituted creature was
betrayed into one fatal error.

She was persuaded—words can tell no more!

It was a grievous fault, and grievously _Theresa_ answered it.

When ill things are devised, and to be done, ill agents are soon found,
especially by the young, the wealthy, and the powerful.

The declining health of Sir Miles St. Aubyn was no secret in the
neighborhood—the near approach of his death was already a matter of
speculation; and already men almost looked on Jasper as the Lord, _in
esse_, of the estates of Widecomb Manor.

The old white-headed vicar had a son, poor like himself, and
unaspiring—like himself, in holy orders; and for him, when his own
humble career should be ended, he hoped the reversion of the vicarage,
which was in the gift of the proprietor of Widecomb. The old man had
known Jasper from his boyhood, had loved Theresa, whom he had, indeed,
baptized, from her cradle. He was very old and infirm, and some believed
that his intellect was failing. Between his affection for the parties,
and his interest in his son’s welfare, it was easy to frame a plausible
tale, which should work him to Jasper’s will; and with even less
difficulty than the boy looked for, he was prevailed upon to unite them
secretly, and at the dead of night, in the parish church at the small
village by the fords.

The sexton of the parish church was a low knave, with no thought beyond
his own interest, no wish but for the accumulation of gain. A
gamekeeper, devoted to the young master’s worst desires, a fellow who
had long ministered to his most evil habits, and had in no small degree
assisted to render him what he was, only too willingly consented to aid
in an affair which he saw clearly would put the young heir in his power
forever.

He was selected as one of the witnesses—for without witnesses, the good
but weak old vicar would not perform the ceremony; and he promised to
bring a second, in the person of his aged and doting mother, the
respectability of whose appearance should do away with any scruples of
Theresa’s, while her infirmity should render her a safe depository of
the most dangerous secret.

And why all this mystery—this tortuous and base deviation from the path
of right—this unnecessary concealment, and unmeaning deceit?

Wherefore, if the boy were, indeed, what he has been described, and no
more, impulsive, willful, rash, headlong, irresistible in his
impulses—if not a base traitor, full of dark plots, deep-laid
beforehand—wherefore, if he did love the girl, with all the love of
which his character was capable, if he had not predetermined to desert
her—wherefore did he not wed her openly in the light of day, amid
crowds of glad friends, and rejoicing dependents? Why did he not gladden
the heart of his aged father, and lead her to the home of his ancestors
a happy and honored bride, without that one blot on her conscience,
without that one shadow of deceit, which marred the perfect truthfulness
of her character, and in after days weighed on her mind heavily?

                                                  [_To be continued._

                 *        *        *        *        *



                        THE FOUNTAIN IN WINTER.


                           BY BAYARD TAYLOR.


    The northern winds are raw and cold,
    And crust with ice the frozen mould;
    The gusty branches lash the wall
    With icicles that snap and fall.

    There is no light on earth to-day—
    The very sky is blank and gray;
    Yet still the fountain’s quivering shaft
    Leaps upward, as when Spring-time laughed.

    No diamonds glitter on its brink,
    No red-lipped blossoms bend to drink,
    And on the blast, its fluttering wing
    Is spread above no kindred thing.

    The drops that strike the frozen mould
    Make all the garden doubly cold,
    And with a chill and shivering pain
    I hear the fall of sleety rain.

    The music that, in beamy May,
    Told of an endless holyday,
    With surly Winter’s wailings blent,
    Becomes his dreariest instrument.

    The water’s blithe and sparkling voice,
    That all the Summer said, “rejoice!”
    Now pours upon the bitter air
    The hollow laughter of despair.

    So, when the flowers of Life lie dead
    Beneath a darker Winter’s tread,
    The songs that once gave Joy a soul
    Bring to the heart its heaviest dole.

    The fresh delight that leaped and sung
    The sunny bowers of Bliss among,
    But gives to Sorrow colder tears,
    And laughs to mock our clouded years.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                            A PARTING SONG.


                         BY PROFESSOR CAMPBELL.


    Free—as the lonely eagle free—
      A leaden sky is o’er me—
    I’m out upon a leaden sea—
      A wide, cold world before me.
    Wait’st thou to woo a breeze, my bark?
      The eager wave’s upheaving
    Chideth thy stay—the little lark
      Her upward way is cleaving.

    Hymn-bird, how oft thy glorious note
      Hath trumpeted the day,
    When bark and I were both afloat
      Upon our wandering way.
    For I have wandered many an hour,
      My trusty bark, with thee,
    And culled full many a breathing flower
      Of wildest Poesy.

    In those bright hours, when gliding down
      Each flower-reflecting stream,
    When health, hope, fancy—all had thrown
      Their light o’er boyhood’s dream—
    Ah! little did I dream, my boat,
      That thou and I should be
    Alone upon the world, afloat
      Upon the wide, wide sea.

    Yet speed we forth—what care I now
      That once those bright hours shone?
    Is there a blight upon my brow?
      No—’tis enough, they’re gone.
    Then speed we forth—we leave behind
      A home still passing fair,
    Some spot to call a home to find—
      I know not—care not where.

    Be it but distant, distant far,
      Across the billowy deep,
    Where thought and passion cease to war—
      Where misery may sleep.
    Sleep! no—’tis but a foolish thought,
      That may not, cannot be—
    O’er the wide world there is no spot
      Of sleep for misery.

    Wherever winds the ocean fan,
      To-morrow’s born and dies,
    Wherever man deceiveth man,
      And woman lisps and lies—
    In city, or in solitude,
      In banquet-hall, or cell—
    The past—the past will still intrude—
      Memory—the wretch’s hell.

    Chance choose the clime—I only seek—
      To what else tortures bound—
    The spirit feel no vulture beak
      Of pity in the wound.
    Then speed we forth—ay, speed we forth—
      I know not—care not where;
    Thou’lt build on any spot of earth
      Thy lone, proud home, Despair.

    So leap, so leap, brave heart, brave will—
      Misery hath taught to know
    Still the fierce strength invincible,
      That springs to meet the blow.
    False friends—fond hopes—mad joys of old
      May not forgotten be—
    But room, and hurrah! for joys untold
      Of brave heart’s victory.

    This joy’s infectious—bounds my bark,
      As prouder far to bear
    Her master, now the heav’ns are dark,
      Than when they smiled most fair.
    The purpling waters, as they leap
      Around her eager prow,
    Laugh out in sympathy, and keep
      Dark commune with me now.

    On, on, my bark, thy gallant keel
      Is bounding merrily—
    Tossing the white foam, thou dost feel
      That now we both are free.
    And we are free—oh! we are free—
      A sky of storms is o’er us—
    A glorious strife, to end with life
      And victory, before us.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                           THE LIGHT OF LIFE.


                         BY MRS O. M. P. LORD.


    Thou can’st not dream of darkness now,
      My child! so full of radiant light
    Thy morning breaks, with song of birds;
      That beaming eye no gloomy night
    Discerns, when weary petals close,
    And birds with folded wing repose.

    Nor would I change this fair design;
      As well the dew might fall at noon,
    Or fierce December’s coming blast
      Assail the shrinking flowers of June,
    As fall o’er hearts in light arrayed,
    From dim, prospective ill, a shade.

    And yet, my darling child, the night,
      With starless depths, may come, and day,
    The sunniest e’en, hath gloomy hours;
      What then will cheer the darkened way?
    Lo here! where deepest shade appals,
    The Saviour’s constant footstep falls.

    Seek thou, my child, the record oft,
      When faint thy weary heart, and dim
    With tears thine eye; our varied life
      Revealed in his appears; from him
    A light doth pierce the shadows through,
    Which fall on heaven’s long avenue.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                        THE RECREANT MISSIONARY,


                            JUDAS ISCARIOT:

                        “Who also betrayed Him.”


                            BY CAROLINE C——.


Thus always, the last mentioned among the holy Apostles, and with the
brand of shame attached to his name, is Judas Iscariot, the traitor,
brought before us. And inasmuch as from the lives of them, who in all
circumstances continued faithful to their Lord, lessons of the highest
benefit may be drawn by the teachable mind, I am constrained to think
there comes to us a lesson and a warning we may not lightly heed, from
him who “by transgression fell.” He, too, when the Voice was heard
crying in the wilderness gave willing heed; he, too, amid the eager
crowd was seen listening anxiously to the inspired word of John the
Baptist; he, too, when the meek Saviour came, attended on His preaching,
and his heart was stirred by the words of entreaty and condemnation that
he heard. He, too, would fain believe, and be forgiven, and be numbered
among the disciples of the new king.

When, as one of the twelve Apostles, he was chosen, and in a peculiar
manner recognized by the Saviour as one of his own household, Judas
rejoiced—for he doubtless conceived that if Christ’s kingdom was to be
of an earthly nature, it was certainly a great advancement, and a high
honor, to be chosen publicly as one of His chief ministers. How then
must he have listened to the words of Jesus, when, after he had selected
the Twelve, he charged them with their duty, and told them all that they
must bear and suffer for His sake. “In the world ye shall have
tribulation and sorrow—but, be of good cheer, I have overcome the
world.” One cannot but think that the latter part of this declaration
must have fallen with little weight on the disappointed heart of Judas.
The Saviour had consecrated them to their holy work—to the lives of
persecution, and sorrow, and pain, which He knew awaited them—he was
calling down the power of his spirit to rest and abide with each of
them, the power which should enable them to release guilty humanity from
its load of sin, wherever it should be felt in its oppressiveness—and
while in humility the eyes of some of those disciples were fixed upon
the ground, unto his majestic countenance others were raised, catching
from his fervid devotion the spark of heavenly fire that was to make
them indeed beacon lights on the mountain of Truth! By the words he
uttered, he bade them remember the difficulties which would beset
them—fully pointing out to them the thorny path which they must tread.
Not with the conviction that a life of ease was before them went they
forth. They had enlisted as soldiers in His service, it was therefore
meet that they should know the dangers of the hostile country through
which they were to pass. “Behold I send you forth as sheep amidst
wolves!” Danger, privation, and perchance a horrible death were the foes
they were to meet.

But, those dangers all revealed, He did not leave them struck down, as
it were, by the heavy weight of the cross they had chosen to bear—kind
words, encouraging promises, assurances of his fatherly protection and
guidance fell from his lips, and comforted and cheered them.

There was one heart on which the words of the Saviour fell with chilling
force—in his hearing, was now forever decided the question as to the
nature of Christ’s kingdom and service. When Judas heard that calm, deep
voice telling of the power of the enemy into whose hands they were
voluntarily placing themselves—when he became convinced of the danger
and wo which would encircle them on every side—that the prison might
prove their place of abode—that the scourge and instruments of torture
would be the welcoming extended to them in the world—that contumely,
shame and reproach, and despiteful treatment would inevitably meet them
in all their wanderings, he shrunk back—when he listened to the
promises Jesus made to them of rest in heaven, of the continued care of
God, which nevertheless might not preserve them from a death of torture
and ignominy—when he reflected that the rewards promised were none of
them of a temporal nature, and were to be made good only in the dim
future, in another existence that was called eternal, he shrunk from the
prospect of so much present misery, to be endured for a reward so
vague—he forgot the weight of glory that was to be revealed, or, if he
remembered it at all, the future of bliss was so far distant, and the
promises so obscure, that they fell like dust in the balance of that
scale where wo, vexation and privations innumerable were to be weighed.
Better, ah far better, he thought, that former life of labor and
obscurity he had led, than a life of such publicity and danger as he was
now to lead. None ever molested him _then_, quietly and peacefully he
had lived till that hour when he lent too willing an ear to the
compassionate words of Him who spoke, not as man, but as God and
Saviour.

And yet despite this irresoluteness, when the young man thought of his
companions who were setting forth so zealously on the path at whose very
threshold he faltered, he was almost constrained to rush boldly onward
with them. His pride shrunk from the thought of proving so soon recreant
to the cause which he had espoused so gladly and earnestly.

That first moment when he wavered in his zeal—when his determination
faltered—we may count as the moment of his downfall, of his fearful
ruin—that moment when the first bewildering thought rushed into his
brain, what shall I gain by this life of self-denial?—that moment when
the chilling conviction of the folly of his enthusiasm in the service of
Christ crept over him—that moment of unguarded temptation when Satan
obtained a hearing, that was his trial-time—then he was found
wanting—_then he fell_—then was he lost to the cause he had vowed to
support.

And yet in that moment of hesitation it is not to be supposed that Judas
had the courage, or even the wish, forever to reject and disown his
master, Jesus. We cannot believe that he had crept into the camp of
Salvation under false colors, merely to spy out its secrets, its most
vulnerable points, that so he might deliver the great chief of the army
into the hands of his enemy. Not so. It was impossible for the man to
harden in unbelief; for such convincing proof of the might and divinity
of Jesus had been given him, as it was not possible for him to reject.
And as he pondered on the gentle and touching loving kindness that
Master had shown toward him and his apostolic brethren, it may be that
the desire to aid and to serve him became for the time stronger even
than his natural cowardice and selfishness. And this may be the reason
why he resolved for a little time, at least, to be considered by the
people as one of the followers of Jesus. And in making this decision
there may possibly have revived in the man’s heart a little of that
fervor of spirit which he had once felt for the sacred cause.

So it was, that again his face turns toward the upward path, and for a
season he will continue therein. Thus goes he forth on his mission,
entertaining in his heart two guests, whose hopes and aspirations, whose
every end and aim are totally at variance. Love of the world, of his
former life of careless sin, and of money, that root of all evil, was
there; and there also was a standard bearer from the camp of Heaven, who
came upholding a banner which, at the will of the entertainer, he would
have gladly unfurled upon the highest battlement of the castle of his
soul—against which the powers of sin and darkness were knocking, and
demanding entrance, with voices which reverberated through every secret
corner of the tenement.

That banner once unfurled, the importunate foe would flee in haste—oh,
why was the word not spoken—the word which would so speedily have
scattered those convulsing legions? Because—ponder upon it, thou who
art halting between two opinions—because the master of that castle
faltered at his post through fear and indecision.

He has gone forth now on the path of discipleship, and his works of
miraculous power proclaim him. At his call and command the gates of
oblivion are opened, and the dead come back to life—the sick, laid on
their couches of pain and agony, arise and walk at his word; and the
gospel of mercy and salvation sounds with marvelous success when its
blessings are proclaimed by his eloquent tongue to the weary, and the
poor, and the heavy-laden. The evil spirits suffered to torment them who
would fain tread in the right path are cast forth, and then the
sorrowing repentant goeth on his way rejoicing! But, as he works all
this good for others, his own mind is tormented by the conflicting
voices which are calling to him. He stills the tempests in the minds of
the distressed, and those burdened with cruel doubts, but in his own
breast there is a storm raging continually, which he _cannot_ command to
silence. He holds up to the parched and dying creatures surrounding him
a cup, while he proclaims, “Ho ye that thirst! buy wine, buy milk,
without money and without price!” “Drink, and ye shall not thirst
again!” while he himself is dying of thirst—and ever as he raises to
his own lips the cup which contains the healing for the nations, his
spirit shrinks back from the draught—it will not drink—it is gall and
wormwood to him!

He lifts his voice, and conviction and peace fall upon them who listen
to him. Repentance is hurled to the sinful heart with the words, “His
yoke is easy, and His burden light!” while himself is drooping and
fainting under the weight of deceit which is upon him. Wherever he goes
he proclaims “Peace!” to the children of men—and peace visits all who
will hearken to him. But in his own breast—ah, _there_ is warfare and
strife, the accusings of conscience, the warnings of wrath to come! In
the chambers of sickness, where the dying were restored to health; by
the wayside, where the foully diseased were cleansed—before the opened
tomb, whence at his call the dead came clothed once again with the
garment of life, amid the multitudes who listened with deepest interest
to his most forcible words, alone, in the solitude of his own heart, or
when in holy communion of thought with the faithful brethren, alike at
all times, and in all places, heard he the still small voice of his
accusing spirit.

The outward form of grace was his, but the purification had not
penetrated into the recesses of his heart! The agonizing knowledge that
at each onward step he was plunging deeper and deeper into the sin which
could not be forgiven—the continual remembrance that he was dispensing
to others the mercy of that God who would forget to be gracious to him,
may be easily conjectured; but may Heaven spare us all from such agony
of conflicting thoughts and hopes as must have been the daily and
nightly companion of Judas Iscariot, long before he came out from the
disciples’ ranks to betray his lord into the hands of sinners!

                 *        *        *        *        *

In the magnificent chambers of the High Priest, adorned with so much
costliness and luxury, Caiaphas sat in state. Ushered in by menials, a
young man enters timidly to the presence of the haughty potentate.

The dignity of mien which once distinguished the ambassador of the Lord,
which would not bend to the splendor of court or king, is no longer to
be seen in Judas. The meanness of servility speaks in every motion,
every word of the man—his self-respect is gone, and with it all the
confidence of manhood. But if the craftiness of the stranger’s
appearance struck most unfavorably on the High Priest, how much more
must he have been startled and amazed, as Judas unfolded the reason of
his appearance there; and it was not till his mission was fully revealed
that Caiaphas recognized in the craven supplicant one of those far-famed
Apostles, with whose names he was already familiar.

The proud man must have shrunk back in horror from the revolting
proposal of Judas—for, though it placed within his reach the
accomplishment of one of the highest wishes of his life, (the
deliverance of Christ into his hands,) yet the means by which he was
offered the capture were opposed to all the principles of his creed of
manly honor. Could he in all his high mightiness stoop to receive the
prisoner at the hands of one who had been his friend—his companion and
ministering servant? No—he must certainly at the first have turned away
contemptuously from the detail of such consummate villainy; it must
surely have been more than even he could countenance—for though not
wont to cavil at the means employed, when any wished for end was to be
gained, yet Caiaphas _must_ have wondered, as the question burst from
the covetous impatient heart of Judas, “What will ye give me, and I will
deliver him unto you?” But as the High Priest pondered on that question,
gradually his spirit ceased its noble revolting, he began to lose sight
of the contemptible, horrible treachery of the man on his knees before
his throne, and he felt something like rejoicing in the thought, that
the object he had so longed to accomplish, was within his reach at last.
Therefore it was not long ere he turned with a more readily listening
ear, and began to _bargain_ with the Apostle!

At length the agreement was made—the covenant formed—the price of the
Saviour’s life was set, and the thirty pieces of silver were paid into
the hands of Judas! And then the traitor arose, and went from the
presence-chamber of Caiaphas, but faintness was within his dastard
heart, and the flush of shame upon his forehead, and with downcast eyes,
and hasty step he went, for in his hands he bore the proofs of his
condemning guilt and sordid meanness; knowing also that even the enemies
of Christ, gladly as they would receive Him into their power, had shrunk
from taking the prisoner from an apostle’s hands. But, the contract was
made, the wages of sin were in his hands; for Judas there was no going
back; onward—onward—onward he was impelled by the unchained fiend
within him, to work out his own eternal ruin.

He must know rest neither day nor night—constantly he must be on the
alert, that Jesus should not altogether escape him—and when the
favorable moment arrived, he was to deliver Him up to the rulers!

And with that price of the innocent blood in his hands he dared still to
labor and associate with the holy Apostles, dared to express submission
and reverence for the God who read his every inmost thought. It seems a
thing almost incredible—for the paltry sum of money he had dared
appoint himself the judge to deliver the prisoner into the executioner’s
hands! Already he had been guilty of taking money from the common purse
of the disciples, which was entrusted to him, in order that he might
gratify his selfish desires—and this guilt was known to Jesus, but the
compassionate Saviour had refrained from making it known; it would have
brought down dishonor on the holy cause which Judas at the best served
so unfaithfully, and would have heaped on the sinful man’s own head
shame and condemnation, had the transaction been made known
publicly—thus he was still suffered to retain his post of trust and
honor.

Were we not daily beholding crimes, only less heinous than those of
Judas, it would be difficult indeed for us to conceive his guilt! We
could not believe it possibly within the range of human capability to
sin, that he would sacrifice even his God for money! The Saviour’s
blood—it was indeed a high price to pay for thirty pieces of silver!
But, though his crime was such as has placed the name of Judas the very
first on the long, long list of human guilt—though, from the very
nature, and necessity of things, there never can be another soul stained
with sin so deep and dreadful, though now, when as a completed whole we
survey our blessed Saviour’s life on earth, we stand aghast as we think
on his betrayer, yet, my reader, who among us shall dare to say that had
we lived in those days we surely would have been guiltless of the blood
of that just man? There is nothing easier than to accuse our “first
parents,” Adam and Eve, of an unaccountable transgression—it is very
easy to _say_ that nothing could ever have tempted _us_ to the
commission of a crime so great—I would assuredly be the last to _dare_
uphold Judas in his deadly sin, or to endeavor to cleanse from his name
the terrible blackness of the crime attached to it—it was monstrous
guilt of which he through all the ages has stood convicted, but I
repeat, by no means was it unaccountable!

Think of our world, and of human nature as it is now, after so many
centuries have passed, and the light of knowledge has spread far and
wide. Consider what the covetousness, the folly, the ambition of the
heart work among us now; behold even at this hour, what multitudes are
there among us who are scoffers, and deniers, and mockers of the Lord
who bought them! Ah, were it a veritable truth which the Jews believe
and assert, that the Messiah has not yet come, even now would not be
found wanting the vengeful unbelievers, the betrayer, the judge, the
proud religion, the cross, and the thorny crown, and earth and heaven
would be rent again with that cry which a false-hearted people wrung
from Him who died upon the cross!

The feast of the Passover was at hand, and the little band of apostles
which had been widely dispersed, fulfilling every where they went their
onerous duties, met together once more to celebrate the feast.

And at eventide the holy men assembled in the “upper room” of a house to
which Jesus had directed them, wherein they had made ready for the
ceremonial celebration. But it was a new feast, to partake of which the
Saviour had called them together. The forms of the ancient days were
being fast set aside; there was no more need that the lamb should be
slain in commemoration of the mercy of God in a time when his people
were in most dire necessity—soon was a Lamb to be sacrificed whose
efficacious blood was to save, and cleanse from sin all who would have
faith in God and his crucified Son. And it was meet that _that_ night,
when the feast of the Passover was wont to be celebrated, should be
chosen for the superseding of a dead form by a more living faith. The
consecrated bread and wine, the emblems of His sacred body and blood,
these were the symbols to be used—there was not any longer need for the
shedding of the blood of beasts.

The twelve were all together. They had come rejoicing that they might
meet again with their Master in safety and peace, that they might once
more listen to His words and counsel whom they loved so well. In their
short time of separation they had met all of them with wonderful
success, and the scornful, harsh rebukes they had oftentimes been forced
to listen to, they had patiently, ay, gladly endured, for it was all for
Him, and they could not but rejoice that they were counted worthy to
suffer shame for His name. But reproach, and contumely, and condemnation
of the world, was not all that they had met; they had looked on eyes
their words had caused to brighten with joy—they had heard voices, sad
and desponding, raised in hymns of thanksgiving and rejoicing—they had
seen many hopeful manifestations of repentance, had pointed out to many
the straight path and the narrow way leading to eternal life. Well might
they come as faithful stewards with gladness and haste at the call of
their Lord!

Did I say _all_ came with rejoicing to look upon their Master’s face
again? nay, verily, _not all_!

One in their midst whose words had flown far over the land, who had
besought sinners most effectually to repent, who had given to many a
most blessed hope, came among them to partake of the feast of the
Passover, to offer to his brethren the hand of fellowship, wherein he
had so recently clapped with greedy joy the infamous price of the
Redeemer’s blood!

_He_ came with a troubled mind, feeling that he had no right to commune
with the more faithful eleven, and dreading to meet the glance of the
Searcher of Hearts. He knew full well, that though his brethren and
fellow-laborers beheld his successful preaching with gladness, that they
could see no further—they could do no more than judge him by his
outward acts, which had, as far as their knowledge went, been always
blameless—but he also knew that He who had bidden them to the supper
gazed with more than human power of vision into his evil heart, that He
saw and beheld the vile thing which he had done; full well the fearful
sinner knew that the flimsy veil he had been able to fling over his
guilt, was far from being efficient to screen him from the scrutinizing
gaze of his Lord.

Oh, how like the knell of condemnation must those mournful words have
fallen on the ear of Judas:

“Verily I say unto you that one of _you_ shall betray me!”

It was the sudden death of every hope of concealment.

Fear and wonder filled the minds of the faithful eleven. One of _them_
betray their beloved Master? It was a thought inconceivable to them.
With astonished looks they turned from one to another, and with full
confidence in the integrity of their hearts they asked, “Lord, is it I?”

Solemnly upon the stillness broke that answer.

“He that dippeth his hand into the dish with me, the same shall betray
me, and wo unto that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed, it had been
good for that man had he never been born.”

When these fearful words of warning were pronounced, and every voice was
hushed, and every heart was awe-struck, again was heard the trembling
voice of Judas the guilty, echoing faintly, and as though irresistibly
_compelled_ to utter the words, “Master, is it _I_?”

The sad eyes of the eleven were fixed upon their brother and their Lord,
and oh what a thrill of horror must have run through every heart as the
answer “_Thou hast said_,” was whispered in a tone of sorrowful reproach
by the Saviour, who knew that he was already betrayed!

When Judas saw the reproachful expression that every face wore, and was
thus assured that his treachery was known, he felt his place was no
longer amid the faithful followers and servants of Jesus—he knew well
enough the just horror with which the holy men surrounding him would
look upon his ingratitude and soul-destroying guilt. He had still sense
enough left to feel that he should no longer remain among those who had
such cause to deeply deplore the desecration he had done the service of
Christ; and, too, his inclination for, and pleasure in that service, and
his desire to remain in that holy company was gone. He had chosen
another master, even the Evil One—he must fight under another banner,
even that of the Blackness of Darkness!

Publicly he had parted with his heavenly portion for a mere handful of
silver, and now what part or lot had he in the work, to do which a clean
heart and a right spirit were so pre-eminently required?
Self-forgetfulness, constancy, devotion, truth, he lacked all these! how
then could _he_ further the cause of the Redeemer? Judas must have gone
from that chamber of mournful feasting feeling himself to be a doomed
man, bearing upon himself the full weight of the heavy curse of God!

An impassable barrier, an unfathomable gulf lay now between him and the
works of holiness—a separating wall built even by his own willing hands
up to the portal of heaven, shut him forever from the hope of mercy or
the possibility of repentance!

                 *        *        *        *        *

It is night. Over the Garden of Gethsemane is spread the shadow of a
dark cloud. The moon’s light is obscured; or, where at intervals it
appears between the broken clouds, its dim rays render the sadness and
silence of the place only more mournful still. To the quietness and
retirement of that garden, One has come whose soul is filled with sorrow
even unto death! He has spoken kindly words of love to his disciples, he
has bidden them tarry in the garden to watch with Him; but though Jesus
would fain have them nigh, his agony and suffering were too great for
any but the Father to witness, therefore he went apart from them, and
falling on his face, in the depth of anguish he prayed, “Oh! my Father,
if it be possible, let this cup pass from me—nevertheless not as I
will, but as Thou wilt!”

Bending submissively to the will of that Father in all things, he could
drink even the bitterness of that cup wherein was garnered a whole
world’s sin. Three times was the agonized prayer repeated, and still the
aid from heaven was not sent, nor the bitter cup removed! Oh, reader, by
that night of unexampled agony, by the blood-drops which burst from
_our_ Saviour in the extremity of His anguish, bedewing the ground of
Gethsemane—by the remembrance of the cross-planted Calvary—by the
bitterness of that draught the dregs of which were not spared, how are
we taught, and warned, and implored to consider well the value of that
sacrifice which He has made _for us_! Can’st thou think on that night of
unexampled agony and longer refrain from flinging thyself wholly, with
no reserve, at the foot of the blood-stained cross? Oh never suffer the
remembrance of that night of passion to fade from thy mind or from thy
heart—let it cling to thee continually, inciting to patience, and
courage, and faith, till thou hast learned by them to enter the path
from which His death has taken the sorrow, to which His agony has lent
the glory! Thus shall the cross-crowned Calvary prove to thee a sure
reliable ray that shall guide thee to heaven; thus shall the blood-dew
shed in Gethsemane, spread a reviving freshness over the dying tree of
Faith, which perchance is drooping even at this moment in thy heart!

The Saviour’s last prayer is breathed forth when the sound as of a
multitude breaks on his ear—full well He knoweth who it is that is now
hastening on and entering the Garden sanctified by His presence to take
Him captive. Foremost among the ruthless intruders comes one whose
treacherously smiling face tells of guilt, and ill-concealed shame, and
remorse. He treads through the else silent garden, where the night
blooming flowers are just opening, shedding their rich perfumes abroad;
but Judas heeds not the beauty and tranquillity of that
place—carelessly his feet trample upon the fair blossoms unfolding,
which though crushed still rise again as the weight is removed, and
their perfumes ascend to heaven on the evening air, a living witness
against him.

The multitude come armed as if to the fray—swords and staves are in
their hands, curses and execrations escape their lips, and thoughts of
fiery vengeance and hatred fill their minds. He whom they seek stands
awaiting them. He makes no effort to escape, though had He willed it,
His Father had instantly sent legions of angels to deliver him. No—his
hour was come! the hour for which He left the brightness of the heavenly
kingdom—the hour for which he had put on mortality had arrived—he
would not delay it.

The torches which the arch-traitor and his companions bore fell on the
little group of men they sought—the defiant Apostles, and the calm and
unmoved son of Mary. The multitude faltered in their purpose as they
looked upon these men—the bold, brave-hearted Peter, the loving John,
the humble, faithful, affectionate James, and the man Christ Jesus whom
they came to make captive. Sorrow, such as never beamed from the eyes of
a mortal being, and the consciousness of a power that was able to
scatter at once, as chaff, those who had come out to make Him captive,
spoke from His countenance distinctly and audibly to their sin-hardened
minds.

But Judas—Judas hesitated not. When he saw the Man he was to betray
standing before him, making no effort to escape, he dropped the torch
which had lighted him on his awful mission, and flinging his arms around
the Divinity, _he kissed Him_! and as he embraced with the lips the God
he had offered to betray, Judas cried aloud in a tone of affectionate
and joyful recognition, “Master! Master!”

Aside from the horrible, daring guilt of Judas, there is something
humiliating and revolting in the thought of the traitor’s assuming
friendliness, and love even, as the guise under which to make successful
his nefarious scheme. A kiss, the most fond, familiar greeting; by that
Christ was made known to those who came to take Him by violence, as
though He were a thief, or a common offender, or breaker of the laws of
the land!

Of the remainder of that night the Scriptures tell us naught of the
betrayer. We do not hear of his appearing before Caiaphas as a witness
against his Lord—all his part in that most awful transaction seems to
have been fulfilled—the accusation and condemnation were for others to
make. It is no pleasant task to picture to the fancy the manner in which
the remaining hours of Judas’ life must have passed. The torturing of
conscience—the deadly fear—the sting and constant consciousness of
guilt which _must_ have tormented him, is what the mind shrinks from
contemplating, but to which it returns, as if of necessity, again and
again.

The deed was accomplished, there remained nothing further for him to do,
and so he went out from the sacred garden by himself, that he might be
alone, and count over in security and feast his eyes on the fruits of
his guilt. Ah, that shining treasure! those thirty pieces of silver! At
the moment when for the first time a full conviction of the iniquity of
his deed swept over his thought, and could be kept back no longer by his
will, then it was, if ever, that he _needed_ to strengthen his covetous
heart; and how better could he accomplish that than by keeping in
constant sight the much loved riches he had gained?

But while he counted over the glittering heap, how very strange! he did
not rejoice in it as he had thought to! Possession had robbed
anticipation of all allurements and pleasure, and while alone, watched
only by the eye of his God he counted over the riches, constantly
haunted him those words Jesus spoke on the night of the feast of the
Passover, “it were better for that man had he never been born!” Judas
already was accursed—already was given over to the power of the
tormentors; already his terrified mind was conjuring up the death and
sufferings of the Saviour he had betrayed, and that coveted, cherished
silver was as a stone hanging about his neck, dragging him down, down to
the depths of the sea of perdition!

When the first rays of daylight streamed over Jerusalem, might have been
seen, I fancy, the form of Judas Iscariot wandering through the city,
seeking to escape from his condemning thoughts; oh, the accusations, so
fraught with everlasting wo, his heart must have whispered to him, when
the sunlight fell upon him and the fresh breeze of morning fanned his
brow!

Before the palace where the judges still slept, the wretched man paced
to and fro, bearing with him the thrice accursed silver which burned his
bosom—burned his soul. As yet there were few signs of life in the
silent streets. Only the humblest laborers had come forth to begin with
the earliest light their day of toil. Judas gazed on them as they went
calmly and cheerfully about their accustomed tasks, oh, how wistfully!
Could _he_ only once more know that lightness of heart which innocence
alone confers! Could _he_ but look on the glad light of the sun, and see
there no accusing form which now incessantly uprose before his
imagination! Could he but listen to the voice of Nature, without feeling
that for him she sung only a far-resounding chorus of condemnation!
Could he only go forth to his peaceful labor, and forget that fearful
looking for of judgment which now alone awaited him!

As by degrees the streets filled with men, and women, and little
children, how suspiciously and consciously his eyes glanced at all who
passed by him, the greetings of the companions of former days were
unreturned, or misunderstood, for Judas wondered how that _any_ should
speak to _him_! And when the Pharisee went by, folding his robes closely
about him, lest they might come in contact with the garments of the poor
publican, when with a supercilious look which said so plainly, “Stand
back, for I am holier than thou!” he felt the justice of the unspoken
rebuke though it did come from sinful humanity. And when troops of gay
and innocent children passed on, their voices of mirth and gladness
filling the air which was ere long to echo with the dying Saviour’s cry
and the mocking shouts of unbelieving Jews, he crept more closely to the
wall, fearing lest his sin penetrated garments might by a touch convey
contamination!

At last the palace-gates were opened, and breathlessly Judas rushed
within, and entered unbidden, unannounced and alone the presence chamber
of Caiaphas, where he had stood so recently to bargain for the blood of
Jesus Christ!

Already the chief priest, and the scribes and rulers had gathered
together to confer respecting the fate of their prisoner. How astonished
must they have looked upon the haggard, guilt-stricken man who came so
suddenly before them! No wonder if they started in fear as they saw the
despairing look of his blood-shot eyes, for the glare of a maniac was in
them. With outspread hands he held the dear-bought money toward them,
while the wailing of a spirit doomed forever to despair broke forth in
the words, “I have sinned! I have betrayed the innocent blood!”

In fearful mockery and derision came back the answer, “_What is that to
us! See thou to that!_”

Vainly did he look for sympathy there! Hardened, selfish, sinful, they
could not even feel for him who had been all too late aroused by the
tortures of remorse to a sense of his most awful guilt. It was a vain
thing to appeal to them to receive again the silver and let the precious
prisoner go free!

Oh, what marvel that the wretched man should have shrunk from an
existence which he was well assured would never be blessed by one hour
free from the maddening tortures of his conscience? What wonder that he
hastened from the presence of the fiendish Caiaphas to die before the
sentence of condemnation had been passed on the Master whom his
treachery had given to the cross? What wonder, reader, that the wretched
man perished by his own hands? and can the wildest hoper believe that
his was not an eternal death?

                 *        *        *        *        *



                    THE BRIDE OF BROEK-IN-WATERLAND.


                            A DUTCH ROMANCE.


                         BY CHARLES P. SHIRAS.


    One night, when skies were bright and calm,
    I left my home in Amsterdam;
    I cast my schuyt from moorings loose
    And steered across to Wilhelm Sluis:
    Upon the North Canal I sailed;
    The wind was fair and never failed.
    Quoth I: “My prow shall kiss no sand
    Till I reach Broek-in-Waterland.”

    Before an hour I saw the town,
    And soon the tapering mast was down;
    But ere I left my graceful schuyt
    I heard the music of a flute;
    And songs of love and shouts of joy
    Upon the wind came floating by.
    Quoth I: “They seem a happy band
    That dwell in Broek-in-Waterland.”

    I walked upon a winding street
    That seemed too clean for mortal feet,
    Ere long a stranger met my gaze—
    What joy!—one loved in boyish days!
    Quoth he: “We revel here to-night,
    That all may share in my delight,
    For soon I’ll claim the fairest hand
    In happy Broek-in-Waterland.”

    As thus he spoke, we walked along,
    And soon were mingled in the throng;
    He vowed, in all a lover’s pride,
    That I should see his chosen bride,
    And soon he cried: “Behold her now,
    Yon maiden of the peerless brow.
    The richest, claims the fairest hand
    In happy Broek-in-Waterland!”

    I looked, and swift as lightning dart
    A hopeless anguish seized my heart!
    It once had been my lot to save
    A maiden from the Zuyder’s wave;
    I bore her to her friends on shore,
    And never thought to see her more;
    Nor did I, till I saw her stand
    Betrothed in Broek-in-Waterland!

    But why such grief? for what to me
    This maiden saved from Zuyder Zee?
    She knew me not before that day,
    Scarce saw me ere I turned away.
    I heard her voice, I saw her face,
    Yet asked nor name nor dwelling place.
    Then why this grief to see her stand
    Betrothed in Broek-in-Waterland?

    Love’s deeds are wild—his power divine!
    The maiden’s eye had glanced to mine!
    I heard her speak of thanks to me,
    My heart was moved and yet was free;
    But parting told, and told too late,
    That love had mingled with my fate;
    And now another claimed her hand
    And heart, in Broek-in-Waterland!

    Grown sick at heart, I turned to go,
    Lest men might see and mock my wo;
    But one cried out: “Oh stir not forth,
    A storm has risen in the north!”
    I looked, the sky, of late so blue,
    Was hung in clouds of darkest hue;
    An ocean-storm had reached our strand,
    And burst on Broek-in-Waterland!

    I turned, and heard the maidens shout:
    “What reck we for the storm without,
    For joy is mistress here within—
    Again! again! the dance begin!”
    The waltzers float around the floor—
    But stay! what means that dreadful roar,
    Those shouts of grief or stern command,
    In peaceful Broek-in-Waterland?

    Alas! the troth too soon was known,
    The northern dykes were overthrown;
    And far and wide the vengeful waves
    Their victims swept to markless graves!
    How changed this scene of wild delight!
    Some shrieking fled, some swooned in fright;
    The bravest hearts were now unmanned
    In hapless Broek-in-Waterland!

    The bride, who had betrayed no joy,
    Yet seemed in truth more sad than coy,
    Looked quickly round, with dauntless brow,
    And cried: “Come death or freedom now!”
    Strange words were these! but marked by none,
    For even the lover now had flown,
    And I, alone, for her had planned
    Escape from Broek-in-Waterland.

    Thus far, it seemed she knew me not;
    I turned to draw her from the spot;
    But long before I reached her side,
    She saw—she knew me! and she cried:
    “The guardian of my life restored!
    My own, though seeming lost! adored!
    With thee I dare all storms withstand,
    Come! fly from Broek-in-Waterland!”

    Around my neck her arms were prest,
    She laid her cheek upon my breast,
    Then, yielding, swooned, as if no harm
    Could pass the shelter of my arm!
    An age of thought swept through my brain,
    And joy that rose to fearful pain:
    “All mad!” I shrieked, “some demon’s wand
    Is held o’er Broek-in-Waterland!”

    ’Twas but a moment! then I knew
    A chance with every moment flew;
    For as I bear her through the street
    The waves come dashing round my feet.
    My schuyt floats on the deepening tide;
    By struggling long I reach her side.
    With oar and sail at my command,
    We’re saved from Broek-in-Waterland!

    An hour has past—in Wester Dock
    The maid recovers from the shock;
    But, danger past, deep blushes rise,
    Hot tears of shame start from her eyes;
    She feels that fear hath made her bold,
    That all her secret love is told
    For one who, calmly, saw her stand
    Betrothed in Broek-in-Waterland!

    But love hath power, and bears the will
    To clear all doubts with matchless skill!
    Before the weeping maid I kneel,
    My own long cherished love reveal;
    Believing all, she checks her sighs,
    And, smiling, gently lifts her eyes,
    To tell me why I saw her stand
    Betrothed in Broek-in-Waterland.

    “With strangers I have dwelt,” she said,
    “For I’m a lonely orphan maid.
    They loved me not, and would have sold
    My hand to one who offered gold.
    I scorned him, for I knew his soul
    Was lost to virtue’s safe control.
    He was a stranger—born in Gand—
    No son of Broek-in-Waterland!”

    “Yet hold! he was my friend,” said I;
    “I loved him well in days gone by.”
    She answered: “But your friend in youth,
    In manhood left the paths of truth.
    For wealth, how steeped his soul in sin!
    How basely sought my hand to win!
    And vainly hoped to see me stand
    His bride in Broek-in-Waterland!”

    “Why _vainly_ hoped?” I quickly cried.
    “I scorned their power,” the maid replied—
    “I loved”—she paused—I knew the rest,
    And clasped her closely to my breast.
    I felt that she was truly mine,
    By honor’s law, by law divine,
    That none with shame our flight could brand,
    From hapless Broek-in-Waterland.

    We never thought of storm or calm,
    But held our course to Rotterdam.
    The gale had fallen to a breeze,
    And sails were spread to greet the seas.
    We bade our native land adieu,
    And o’er the waste of waters flew;
    And soon we touched a foreign strand
    Far, far from Broek-in-Waterland!

    And there, in lawful marriage rite,
    We claimed the triumph of our flight;
    But many a year had passed before
    We touched again our native shore.
    No traces of the storm were seen,
    The meadows waved in brightest green!
    We wept with joy once more to stand
    In happy Broek-in-Waterland!

                 *        *        *        *        *



                            MINNIE CLIFTON.


                            A HEART-HISTORY.


                           BY EMMA C. EMBURY.


    “I wish that those whose vocation it is to tell stories would
    deal less in the details of human events, and give us a glimpse,
    sometimes, of the hidden springs which move the human machine,
    and influence its volition.”

In these stirring times of revolution and anarchy, of experiment and
discovery, of mighty changes and astounding vicissitudes, it would seem
as if a story so simple and uneventful as that I am about to relate,
ought to be prefaced by an apology for its very simplicity. But let the
world wag as it may there will ever be a few dwellers by the woodland
brook, a few sojourners at the cottage door, a few wayfarers along the
by-paths and green lanes of quiet life who will like to listen to the
“still small voice,” that counts the throbbings of a single human heart
amid all this sounding tramp of nations. The tale of wild adventure and
startling incident charms us by its very wildness and improbability—the
story of life’s many-colored changes draws us from our own commonplace
cares—the glowing record of passionate love comes to us like a
realization of our own early ideal, and for all these narratives there
are many readers. But who will ponder over the quiet domestic details of
a life which wasted slowly away, unmarked even by the ordinary events
which checker woman’s tranquil existence, and colored with so sober a
gray that even the rose-tint of love’s romance scarce brightened its
dull hue? Who will read such a record save those whose own life presents
to their remembrance the same sober volume of tear-blurred pages? Earth
holds too many such, but the world knows not of them. Life has been to
them a monotonous round of anxiety and care—a November day of clouds
unbroken by a single sunbeam, and thus youth passes away, and hope dies
out, and in time they forget their own identity, living on to old age
with their souls dead within them and their hearts dry as dust. “The
heart may break yet brokenly live on,” but even this is happiness
compared to the slow, _chronic_ heart-withering, which in its dull but
certain progress, leaves no remembrance of any healthier or more vivid
existence in the past.

The father of Minnie Clifton was one of those gifted and graceful (too
often also GRACELESS) persons on whom society generally bestows the
mysteriously comprehensive epithet of “_fascinating_.” He was
exceedingly handsome, possessed many of those superficial
accomplishments which the indiscriminating and good-natured world
regards as the blossomings of genius, and was master of the most perfect
tact in the display of his various gifts. It is in no wise extraordinary
therefore that the elegant Charles Clifton should have been one of the
most consummate “_lady-killers_” of his time, and that the innumerable
hearts he was said to have broken, or at least cracked, during his
fashionable career should have won for him, among graver people, the
despicable title of a “_male flirt_.” At the age of forty-five, when his
credit with his tailor was utterly exhausted, and when his too faithful
mirror convinced him that—

        “Years may fly with the _wings_ of the _hawk_; but, alas!
         They are marked by the _feet_ of the _crow_,”

he condescended to bestow himself upon a young and pretty heiress, who
eloped with him from boarding-school. Fortunately for him, his wife
proved to be one of those tender, devoted, womanly creatures, who never
call in the aid of the head to destroy the illusions of the heart. Her
love for her husband long outlived the qualities, real or imaginary,
which had first called it into being, and in the dull selfish egotist of
the fireside she could still see the brilliant and attractive man of
fashion who had won her gratitude by deigning to accept her fortune and
affection. When a woman is won unsought, in other words, when she loves
_first_, she is always doubly enslaved by her affections, and this was
decidedly the case with Mrs. Clifton. She fancied she could never do
enough for her selfish husband, and he soon showed himself the despot
when he found himself possessed of a slave. As he grew older he became a
martyr to gout, and in the slovenly, plethoric, testy-looking, elderly
man, who swore at his pale wife fifty times a day, and kept his only
child in bodily fear by his fierce threats—none of his former friends
would have recognized the “_model man of fashion_.”

In the atmosphere of such a home, Minnie imbibed her first ideas of
womanly duties and womanly rewards. She idolized her gentle mother, and
that mother’s idea of home duties and virtues was condensed into one
single article of faith—perfect submission to the will of a husband and
father. Mrs. Clifton’s mind was too feeble, her experience too limited,
and her affection to her husband too extravagant to allow her to
entertain the slightest doubt of his wisdom or his virtue. She honestly
believed woman to be the inferior creation, and her ideal of a wife was
the patient Grizzel of the old Fabliaux—a creature whose will, whose
wishes, whose very sense of duty was to be placed at a husband’s mercy.
That men might be found whose noble, generous, self-forgetting affection
would place woman like a queen upon the throne of their hearts, asking
nothing in return but the enlightened and true devotion of a loving
nature, was an idea that never had been presented to her imagination.
She fancied that hers was but a common lot, and therefore she early
trained Minnie to the servitude which she supposed would accomplish her
destiny.

Minnie inherited none of the rare beauty which had been her father’s
greatest charm. She had the soft dove-like eyes, the pale clear
complexion, and the peculiar delicacy, almost fragility of frame which
she derived from her mother. These personal traits, combined with her
timid, gentle manner, her perfect good temper, and quiet undemonstrative
tenderness of nature, made her seem merely one of those commonplace
children whom old ladies are apt to praise as good quiet little girls.
Yet Minnie had a fund of practical good sense, together with a certain
playfulness of fancy, and a quick perception of the beautiful as well as
the good in life, which if properly trained and cultivated might have
made her a very superior woman. But in her early home patience, good
temper, and industry were the only qualities called into exercise, and
neither her father nor her mother knew or cared for any thing beyond the
useful attributes in her character. As she emerged from infancy, she
gradually became the little domestic drudge, for the rapid waste of her
mother’s fortune soon reduced them to the narrowest mode of life, and
when her father came home from the club, where he could still keep up
appearances, to the small, ill-furnished house where his extravagance
had imprisoned his wife, it was Minnie who waited on his caprices and
ran at his call like a servant. As he became diseased and still more
reduced, matters grew worse, and poor Minnie’s home became the scene of
discord and discomfort, as well as the abode of positive want. Mr.
Clifton grew into a sick savage, Mrs. Clifton sunk into querulous
discontent, and Minnie was little more than the recipient of the
ill-humor of both.

Yet Minnie loved her parents dearly, and not a murmur ever escaped her
lips, however unreasonable might be the demands upon her childish
patience or her limited time. But she was destined to a heavier thraldom
than that which nature had imposed. One of those local epidemics which
sometimes devastate a neighborhood broke out near them, and both her
parents fell victims to it while she lay in a state between life and
death. When she recovered her consciousness she learned that her father
and mother had been buried a week before, and she was now a poor
friendless orphan. The tidings, uncautiously communicated, caused a
relapse which brought her a second time to the brink of the grave. But
the principle of life is wonderfully strong in youth, and after many
weeks of suffering Minnie was restored to health. During her
convalescence she gradually learned all the circumstances of her
bereavement from a kind and careful nurse, in whose neat and pleasant
apartment she found herself domiciled.

“But how came I here?” asked the bewildered child, as she looked out
upon the green fields that surrounded her present abode.

“Let me answer you, my little cousin,” said a strange but pleasant
voice, as a tall young stripling entered the room.

The explanation was soon given. There was a certain Mrs. Woodley, the
maternal aunt of Mrs. Clifton, who, offended at her imprudent marriage,
had refused to hold any intercourse with her. This lady had a son
pursuing his studies in the metropolis, who had accidentally heard
Minnie’s story told by a benevolent physician. To Hubert Woodley such a
story would have been felt as a call upon his sympathies under any
circumstances, but when he found upon inquiry that the child was his own
blood relation, he acted promptly and decidedly. Minnie was removed to
healthy country lodgings, and when all danger was over he wrote to his
mother requesting her to give Minnie a home with her for the future. To
his doting parents Hubert’s will was law, and he was fully authorized to
bring his little cousin home as soon as her health would bear the
journey.

How many people there are in the world who perform all the duties of
life, and apparently enjoy a fair proportion of its pleasures, yet are
as utterly deficient in all that goes to constitute a warm, generous,
sympathizing heart, as if they had been mere animals! They are like
machines, moving with clock-like regularity in their own narrow circle,
doing exactly what their “hands find to do,” but never seeming to
suspect that the head might suggest, or the heart might impel to higher
duties or broader responsibilities. Such were the new friends who now
came forward to claim the friendless orphan.

Mr. and Mrs. Woodley were dull, plodding, commonplace people, who had
begun life in a very small way, and by close attention to the “day of
small things,” had grown moderately rich, exceedingly selfish, and
tolerably fat. Mr. Woodley had made his fortune by such minute
accumulations that he might perhaps be pardoned for literally believing
that

        “Trifles make the sum of human things.”

And to those who hold the belief in “predestinate missions,” Mrs.
Woodley’s taste for watching over the trivialities of existence proved
that she was born “to look after candle-ends and cheese-parings.” As
soon as they had collected what they considered a competent fortune they
had retired to a country town, where the attractions of a new
brick-house, planted in the midst of a broad and treeless meadow, proved
irresistible to the utilitarian tastes of both, especially as it could
be purchased at a low price. In this new home the good couple had ample
opportunity to gratify their peculiar tastes. Mr. Woodley raised his own
vegetables, and occasionally was not above selling any surplus produce
of his land to a neighbor, while his wife succeeded in making her house
the very pattern of cold formal neatness, merely at the expense of
hospitality, good-humor, cheerfulness, and everything like rational or
intellectual occupation. She scrubbed, and scoured, and scolded, until
she drove her single servant to desperation, when a new one was found to
go through the same ordeal for awhile. She saw no company, because it
was expensive and troublesome—she went no where because she was too
busy at home—she enjoyed nothing, not even her own neatness, because
there was always some mote in the sunbeam, or some grain of dust in the
air which either had, or would, or might fall somewhere in the midst of
her cleanliness.

One only feeling seemed to have lived and thrived in the stiff hard soil
of these people’s hearts, and this was their love for their only son. It
is true it had required the death of eight other children to concentrate
and condense parental affection into any thing like a sentiment upon the
remaining one, but all there was of love in their natures was
unreservedly bestowed upon Hubert.

To such parents and in such a home Hubert might well seem like a human
sunbeam. He was one of those light-hearted, merry-tempered, affectionate
boys, who are always such loveable creatures in early youth, and whose
characters are in after life entirely formed by the mould and pressure
of circumstances. The only strong quality in his whole nature was
ambition, but this ambition was without fixed aim or purpose. To go
beyond his companions in whatever they chose to undertake was his usual
object, but he never struck out a path for himself. His earliest friends
had become students, and therefore Hubert was a student with them; his
versatility and quickness of mind enabling him to keep pace with
plodding industry, and sometimes even to emulate genius. He was tall,
well-made, and handsome, but a physiognomist might have detected
infirmity of purpose in his flexible, loosely-cut lips, and phrenology
would have turned in despair from a head which exhibited such a
deplorable want of balance. But at eighteen Hubert was handsome enough
to satisfy a mother’s pride, and warm-hearted enough to be agreeable to
every one.

Hubert’s kind feelings had been especially called forth by the desolate
child whom he had rescued from distress, perhaps from death. He looked
upon her as his especial charge, and the gratified self-love which is
apt to mingle with all our better feelings, made him cherish her with
unusual tenderness. But Minnie had been so unused to kindness that she
shrunk almost in dismay from her cousin’s boyish gayety and boisterous
attentions. Disappointed by her cold quiet manner and unconquerable
sadness, Hubert soon ceased all attempt to call her out from her shy
reserve, and as he soon returned to the city to resume his studies,
Minnie was left to learn the routine of daily duties by which she was
expected to repay her debt of gratitude to Mrs. Woodley.

Minnie was twelve years old when she entered the dull and quiet home in
which she was thereafter to dwell, apart from all companionship with
youth, and chained by the strong fetter of gratitude to the most
exacting of domestic despots. Timid, submissive in temper, and meek,
both from natural temperament and from early experience of suffering,
she was precisely the docile, uncomplaining, unresisting slave that
realized Mrs. Woodley’s ideal of a poor relation. Of course she was
thoroughly and severely drilled into an intimate knowledge of all the
important minor duties of life. Her early taste for books was diligently
repressed, her delicate perceptions of every thing good and beautiful
were sadly confounded by Mrs. Woodley’s practical views of life, and
from a child of great intellectual promise, she was gradually
transformed into a faithful, unwearied, and industrious upper servant,
in a household where eating and drinking and house-cleaning were such
important objects of existence, that the whole soul must be devoted to
them.

And thus passed on the sunny years of childhood and the beautiful days
of early girlhood, while not one ray of the sunshine, nor one gleam of
the beauty ever blessed the eyes and heart of poor Minnie. A dull calm
stole over all her faculties, and in time she might have become the mere
machine which her benefactress could best appreciate, had it not been
for the occasional visits which Hubert Woodley paid to his quiet home.
Hubert was one of those restless versatile beings who in early life
often exhibit something so resembling genius that they are allowed to
indulge a sort of dreamy indolence, which their friends mistake for the
waywardness of superior powers. He was something of an artist, a little
of a poet, an easy conversationist, and, as he had really studied much,
was certainly superior to most youths of his age. But whether he would
concentrate himself upon any one pursuit, or whether he would remain an
idle dreamer, or whether, as his father secretly hoped, he would finally
centre his ambition upon the rewards of wealth and become a man of
business, was yet doubtful. He deferred a decision as long as possible,
and it was rather to put off the necessity of choosing a course of life
than from any other motive, that he determined to make the tour of
Europe.

For more than four years Hubert wandered about the world with a vague
purpose and aimless projects, happy only in escaping from the dull
monotony of home, until a long-continued illness, contracted by
imprudent exposure in the Campagna de Roma, at length sent him to
England in the hope of benefiting by the skill of a celebrated physician
there. During his stay in that land of wealth and comfort, Hubert found
himself surrounded by new and powerful influences. He had learned that
he was not born to “build the lofty rhyme,” and as he walked through the
rich galleries of art in Italy, he had discovered that he was not a
painter. What then was his destiny? He still had his old restlessness of
ambition, and felt that he must be something in order to satisfy his own
cravings. As he stood on the quay at Liverpool, and looked abroad upon
the winged ships and crowded storehouses, the mystery of his being was
suddenly solved. Commerce was the most liberal of deities to her true
votaries, and riches would command rank and control talent. The same
sudden impulse which had formerly made him fancy he would be an artist,
now decided him to become a merchant and a man of fortune. He determined
to return to his native land and devote himself to business. His next
letter to his father made known his present views, and while his father
gladly made all necessary arrangements for his new pursuit, Hubert
hastened his preparations for revisiting his long deserted home.

It is an old proverb that “opportunity makes thieves,” and I once heard
an old maid say that “opportunity makes wives;” one thing is most
certain—that _propinquity often makes lovers_. When Hubert returned he
found Minnie wonderfully developed in her personal appearance. She was
now nineteen, with a graceful figure, a face combining delicacy of
feature with great sweetness of expression, and manners of the most
winning softness. Yet she was not one calculated to excite admiration,
still less was she a person to be fallen in love with suddenly, but
there never was a creature so eminently fitted to glide quietly into
one’s heart of hearts as gentle Minnie Clifton. Hubert had seen much of
women while abroad, but a creature so like “the angel of one’s home,”
had never before crossed his path. Had he met her in society she would
have been like a lovely picture placed in a wrong light, but in the
narrow circle of home every trait in her exquisitely feminine character
was unconsciously displayed to the best advantage.

Mrs. Woodley, like all selfishly affectionate mothers, had long dreaded
the time when her influence over Hubert would be superseded by that of a
wife. Unwilling to have him leave her for another home, she was quite as
unwilling to resign her authority, and sink into merely the dowager
dignity of “old Mrs. Woodley,” yet her good sense told that she could
scarcely hope to retain the sceptre of power for many years longer.
Nothing could have happened so effectually to disappoint her fears and
brighten her hopes, as this dawning affection of Hubert for his “little
cousin,” as he still called her. With a daughter-in-law so thoroughly
trained to submission, so docile, so perfectly good-tempered, so exactly
moulded after Mrs. Woodley’s own model, she could have nothing to fear
either for herself or for Hubert. As for Mr. Woodley he had become
really attached to the quiet girl who aired his shirts, mended his
stockings, brought him his slippers, and always made his second cup of
tea quite as good as the first. He wanted Hubert to marry and settle
down to business, but he hated change of all sorts, and if Minnie became
Hubert’s wife the whole affair could be settled without either expense
or trouble; therefore, after talking the matter over with his good lady,
it was decided that nothing could have turned out better for all
parties.

Minnie was the only one who was ignorant of these new plans and
projects. From the time when Hubert had entered her sick-room, and
uttered his kindly greeting at the moment when she felt herself the most
desolate of human beings, she had regarded him as something more than
mere mortal. But when he returned from Europe, so much improved in
person, so polished by society, and with a mind enlarged by travel, she
looked upon him almost with awe as well as admiration. Unaccustomed as
she was to kindness or appreciation, it is not strange that she should
have been entirely unaware of Hubert’s growing attachment to her. She
felt that the atmosphere of her home had become a more congenial
one—she was conscious that every thing had grown brighter even to her
sad and serious eyes, since he had taken up his abode among them, but
she did not dream of the individual influences which were about to waken
her to a new perception of life and its enjoyments.

But the chief defect in Hubert’s early character was indecision. He
loved his cousin Minnie, but, somehow or other, he hated to put it out
of his power to change if he pleased. He wanted to be unshackled by any
bond except his own inclinations, and feeling very sure that no rivals
could ever interfere with his plans, he made no open avowal of his love
for the present. He devoted himself to business with an ardor that
showed he had at last found his true bent, and that money was actually
the true aim of his ambition. He lived a lonely retired sort of life,
being only one of the “singles” in a large private boarding-house, and
as he never gave suppers, or went to parties, not even the servants were
interested in him. Once a month the stage set him down within a quarter
of a mile of his father’s door, and then he found himself in the
enjoyment of all the attentions that could be lavished upon him for the
few days of his stay. To say that he beguiled the time during his visits
by making love to his cousin, would be hardly fair, but he certainly
said and did things which a woman of the world, without any great
stretch of vanity might have understood as love-making.

Thus passed on month after month, and Minnie was unconsciously drinking
deep from that fountain of freshness which had so lately sprung up in
her lonely path, while Hubert lived in the full enjoyment of all that
sweet unconsciousness, which lent such a charm to her manners, such new
loveliness to her gentle face. It was not until more than two years had
passed that, in an unguarded moment, he was led into such a warm
expression of his feelings as to require some decided explanation. He
then spoke out plainly and manfully, avowed his love and asked Minnie to
become his wife. Terrified at the excess of her own emotions, shocked at
her own apparent ingratitude toward her benefactors in being thus made
happy by what she could not hope they would approve, Minnie could only
weep. But when Hubert assured her that his parents would willingly
receive her as a daughter, she gave her whole soul up to the enjoyment
of such unlooked for bliss. Yet, even in that moment of full
unrestrained affection, why did Hubert counsel silence for the present,
and secrecy until he should fix the moment for frank disclosure?

Convinced that matters were going on as they wished, the old people
asked no questions. Perhaps Mrs. Woodley was not sorry to defer the
period which would elevate Minnie from the humble position of a poor
relation into the condition of an equal, so Hubert was allowed to manage
matters in his own way, and a stranger would have seen nothing in the
manner of the quiet family which portended any change among them. Indeed
to no one but Minnie herself had this new state of affairs made any
difference. To her, the sad and lonely and unloved orphan, the
consciousness of being at last beloved for her own sake, lent a charm to
every thing in life. But her heart had been too early crushed to regain
the elasticity and buoyancy which ought to have belonged to her youth.
She was happy, deeply, entirely happy, but no one could have suspected
the fervid thankfulness of her prayerful happiness, beneath the quiet
demeanor which had now become so habitual to her. It was when alone, in
the solitude of her own chamber, that she gave way to the emotions which
almost overpowered her. It was on her knees that she poured out the
fullness of her joy to Heaven—it was only for the eye of her Heavenly
Father to see the swelling surges of that sea of happy emotion, which
she was too timid, too self-distrustful to exhibit to her lover.

Perhaps there are no people so completely enslaved by habit as those who
are only moved by impulse. Persons who have fixed principles of action
govern their lives by those principles, and habits are only the
secondary forms which those motives assume. But when a man is thoroughly
impulsive, and only to be stirred through some strong emotion, a large
part of his life must be controlled through the unconscious agency of
circumstance and habit, unless, indeed, he should be one of those human
volcanoes, occasionally to be met with, who are never in repose except
the moment after an explosion. Hubert Woodley was a perfect
exemplification of the apparently anomalous fact that a man may have
noble and generous impulses yet be involved in a net-work of selfish
habits. The selfishness which he had inherited from both parents was
overlaid by so much that seemed good and beautiful in his nature, that
its existence was utterly unsuspected by every one, and certainly
unknown to himself. Yet it was this very quality which had made him
ambitious at first of the renown of the scholar, and afterward of the
fame of the painter, and now actuated him to seek after great wealth.
Self was the soil in which every thing grew, even the herbs of grace,
which embellished and concealed the base source from whence they sprung.

Hubert loved Minnie as well as he could love any one beside himself, but
he knew nothing of that affection which makes self a forgotten idea, and
concentrates the whole being upon another. His love had been a fancy
growing out of the novelty of finding so sweet a flower in such an
ungenial spot. Then the desire of approbation, which had always been a
latent propensity with him, stimulated him to make love to her. The
vague stirrings of passion, the necessity of some habitual stimulus to
make home endurable, and the cravings of an unoccupied heart made up the
rest of those mixed motives which led him first to stir the quiet depths
of Minnie’s half-frozen soul. He enjoyed the excitement of her feelings,
just as one might enjoy their first glass of champagne. His brain was
not in the least bewildered, but the effervescence gave him a new and
pleasurable sensation. He liked to hear the hurrying of her quiet
footsteps as she came forward to meet him at the door; he loved to see
the flitting blush come over her pale face when he took her hand in his;
and it was with a sort of epicurean pleasure he felt the trembling of
her shrinking frame as with an excess of maiden reserve she would glide
from his encircling arm in some moment of endearment.

But never once did Hubert reflect on the rights which all these things
were gradually giving her over him. Never did he consider that those
quiet depths of affection which but for him would have been sealed
forever, were now destined to become a fountain of sweetness, or a pool
of bitter waters, according as he directed their flow.

Months had now become years, and yet the relations between the cousins
remained unchanged. Living amid all the gentle ministry of affection,
Hubert scarcely felt the want of any thing beyond what he had already
won. Minnie was tender, gentle and affectionate, ever meeting him with a
smile of welcome, ever studying all his humors, never thwarting his
moods, never exacting any return except such as his own whim might
dictate; content if he was cold and absorbed, grateful and happy if he
was affectionate in his manner; and Hubert certainly enjoyed some of the
pleasantest privileges of married life, without any of its attendant
evils, and therefore he was content to go on year after year, heaping up
money, of which he had become exceedingly careful, and growing richer
every day, while his marriage seemed just as much hidden in the mists of
the distant future as it had been years before.

But changes will occur in human life, not withstanding all our efforts
to prevent them. The Woodleys had a sort of morbid dread of a wedding,
but they did not seem to remember that there might be such a thing as a
funeral to alter the aspect of affairs, until one fine morning, just as
Mrs. Woodley had succeeded in turning the whole house out of the
windows, preparatory to what she called her “spring cleaning,” she was
struck with apoplexy, and died in a few hours. The shock was a terrible
one to the family, and in addition to the grief of such a loss, the
fearful quiet of the house, now that the voice of the restless mistress
was silenced forever, pressed with overpowering weight upon the spirits
of the survivors. But there was little of the sentiment of affection to
embalm the memory of the dead. Mrs. Woodley was buried, and under the
direction of Minnie the house cleaning was completed, after which
matters seemed to resume their old course. Mr. Woodley said something to
Hubert about “settling himself,” and giving the house a mistress, now
that his poor mother was gone. But Hubert looked down at his deep
mourning dress, and seemed shocked at his father’s irreverent haste in
suggesting such ideas, at such a moment. So nothing more was said on the
subject.

In the meantime, what thought, and what felt, and what said Minnie? She
_said_ nothing—she _thought_ she was most unreasonable and ungrateful
not to be perfectly contented—she _felt_ as if the best years of her
life were gliding away, and bearing with them the youth, and freshness
and cheerfulness which were her chief claims upon Hubert’s affection.

Ten years had passed away since the quiet, half-acknowledged engagement
which bound the cousins to each other, and opened for Minnie a vista of
happiness which seemed ever receding as life advanced. Ten years had
passed and Minnie was certainly changed. The unsatisfied yearnings of
affection, the wearing anxiety of hope deferred, the dull stagnation of
a life whose destiny seemed decided, yet never fulfilled, all aided the
work of time, and the thin, pale, careful-looking woman of
nine-and-twenty was only the shadow of the quiet, gentle, graceful
creature of nineteen. Busied in accumulating wealth, Hubert had scarcely
noticed these gradual changes, but when the shock of his mother’s death
awakened his faculties, and startled up his home feelings, _then_ he
beheld Minnie’s faded face in the mirror of his own altered heart. At
thirty-four he was as handsome as ever, notwithstanding the lines of
care which Mammon had stamped on his brow. He was rich, too—rich even
beyond his hopes; he felt full of the energy of animal life, for his
health was perfect, and he began to fancy that he had made a mistake in
confining himself to so monotonous a kind of existence. There was an
uncomfortable routing of conscience whenever he caught himself thinking
of Minnie’s faded looks, so, with his usual palliating policy, he
resolved to settle up his business, spend a winter in Washington, and
marry Minnie the following spring.

His business was soon arranged, he retained a special partnership in the
lucrative concern, leaving all responsibility in the hands of trusty
persons, and, without informing Minnie of his _final_ intentions, set
off on his winter’s pleasuring. It was just as well that he was silent
on the subject, for it would only have increased the turpitude of his
conduct. His good looks, pleasant manners, and great wealth, made him a
favorite in that emporium of speculation. His vanity, which had been
kept so long in abeyance by his love of money, was called forth by the
flatteries and attentions of society. He was surrounded by beautiful and
gifted women; he lived in a constant whirl of excitement, and the
remembrance of his home, haunted by the sad-eyed spectre of the woman he
had once loved, became utterly disgusting to him.

The end of all this may easily be guessed. One night Hubert sat until
dawn, pondering over a letter which he wanted to write, which he felt he
must write, yet which he knew not how to shape into words without
branding himself as a villain. At last the letter was written and
dispatched; he had not quite satisfied himself, but it read thus:

“I write to you, my dear cousin, because I want you to inform my father
of an event which may not be altogether pleasing to him, but which you
can soften away so as to quiet any irritation he may feel. You perhaps
know, Minnie, that he has always wished _you_ to become my wife, indeed
I partly made him a promise to that effect, ages ago, at the time when
you and I had some boy-and-girl love-passages—do you remember them, my
little cousin? or have you forgotten our moonlight rambles, and all our
juvenile love-making when I first returned from Europe. It seems to me
like a far-off dream, and yet it was only ten or twelve years ago.
Well—I was a romantic boy then, and you as romantic a little girl—my
father always liked you, and fearing I might be led into bondage by some
strange Delilah, he wanted to make a match between us. My mother, poor
soul, liked your housewifery, and so she joined in the plot. Had we been
married _then_, Minnie, we might have been a quiet, comfortable couple,
treading in the footsteps of my honored parents; I, daily growing pursy
and plethoric, you a matron, in all the dignity of lace-caps, growing
more learned every year in the management of children and the making up
of baby-linen. When I look back at the past, Minnie, I can almost find
it in my heart to wish it had been so. But perhaps it is best as it is.
If under the excitement of my boyish passion I ever said any thing to
you, Minnie, which could involve any bond between us, I pray you to
forgive me, and to attribute it entirely to my ignorance of my own
nature. We have lived on terms of the closest intimacy ever since I
found you, a little sick and suffering child, without a friend or
protector in the wide world. It has been a bond closer than that of
brother and sister, because it had much of the peculiar piquancy which
belongs only to that sweetest of all relationships, which early entitled
me to call you my little cousin. But I am dallying with old
recollections, when I should be telling you of coming events. I am going
to be married, Minnie; you will wonder when I tell you that my bride has
not yet counted her eighteenth summer. She is the prettiest little fairy
in the world, and as artless as a child, indeed she has not been _out_
in society, so I have plucked the flower with the morning dew yet fresh
upon it. My father will object to her youth, and will conjure up the
image of my mother, armed with her bunch of keys, the insignia of her
old-fashioned housekeeping. But you must make my peace with him, Minnie.
My intention at present is to take furnished lodgings in New York, where
I can be near my business, which I mean to resume as soon as this affair
is settled. You will of course remain with my father and watch over his
declining years, unless you should marry, when I shall take care that a
suitable provision be made for you. And now, my dear cousin, having
wearied you, doubtless, as well as myself, with this long epistle, I bid
you adieu; trusting that my father may not be inexorable under your kind
ministry, I shall wait with some impatience for your reply.”

Such was the heartless, yet craftily worded letter which was put into
Minnie’s hands, as she sat watching beside the sick-bed of poor Mr.
Woodley, who had been stricken with paralysis, and now lay between life
and death. It would require a colder heart and more graphic pen than
mine to describe her feelings. Fortunately for her Mr. Woodley was
utterly insensible, and there was no one to witness her emotion. When
the doctor came to visit the patient at evening, he looked amazed at the
change which he saw, not in the sick man, but in the gentle nurse.

“You are ill, Miss Clifton, suffer me to send a nurse for Mr. Woodley,
and let me persuade you to go to bed.”

“If I am not better tomorrow, doctor, I will accept your kind offer, but
I would rather watch him to-night!”

The next morning the good doctor found Minnie looking as pallid as a
corpse, though she had now obtained more control over her nerves. She
refused to give up her charge, but she requested the doctor to write to
Mr. Hubert Woodley and inform him of the event which had befallen his
father. In the course of the following day came a Washington paper. With
trembling hands Minnie unfolded it and looked at the list of marriages.
She had conjectured truly; Hubert had been married the day after he
wrote the letter which had crushed that gentle and loving heart.

The doctor’s letter did not reach Hubert until his return from his
bridal tour. Leaving his wife among her relatives to lament over the
interruption which this untoward event would necessarily make in her
wedding festivities, he hastened to his father’s bedside. But Mr.
Woodley had lost the use of every faculty. He did not know his son—he
could not lift his hand to welcome him—all that remained to him of life
was the merest animal existence; he could take food and sleep, but all
hope of restoration to reason and the use of his limbs was out of the
question.

“He may linger thus for years,” said the doctor, in reply to Hubert’s
questioning.

Hubert could ill bear to see his father’s distorted visage, but it was
worse, far worse, for him to look upon the ghastly pallor which had
settled on the face of Minnie. She scarcely raised her eyes to his face,
and the hand she extended toward his proffered grasp was cold and
nerveless. He could not stand it. In three days he was again in
Washington, and as his father was so accommodating as to live on, the
round of projected gayeties was not interrupted. Hubert daily received
tidings from the doctor respecting his father, until it was decided that
death was yet far distant, and this living death might be dragged out
through many months, when all present anxiety ceased.

His first care was to secure a provision for Minnie, hoping in this way
to relieve his conscience of the terrible load which weighed upon it.
The house where she had so long resided with his parents was secured to
her for life, together with a small annuity, to commence at his father’s
death, _on condition that she remained with his father during the
remainder of his existence_. It was a cruel precaution, for Minnie would
never have dreamed of deserting her benefactor. To look upon the
ghastliness of death for the rest of her life—to humor the caprices and
minister to the diseased appetite of a gibbering and restless corpse
(for such seemed the stricken man) was the fulfillment of her destiny.

For five years Minnie lived on in this dreary and solitary manner, the
helpless invalid and a single servant forming the whole household. But
it mattered little to her now. A dull torpor had gradually crept over
her feelings. She was like an automaton, moved by some other mechanism
than that of her own volition. Long ere Mr. Woodley dropped into the
grave, she had grown gray, and wrinkled, and bent, like one in extreme
old age. At length the end came. The last spark of life went out, and
Mr. Woodley was consigned to darkness and the worm. Again Hubert came to
look upon the wreck he had made. She made a feeble attempt to tell him
her future plans. She wished to enter a recently established charity for
“poor gentlewomen,” but the pride of the man of wealth revolted at such
a scheme. He refused to permit her to depend on any other than himself
for a support, and Minnie felt that the time was past when she could
have earned her own maintenance. The last remnant of her womanly pride
was crushed by the strong hand of him who had ruled her whole life with
a rod of iron. She lived a dependent on the bounty of Hubert Woodley,
dwelling in the house where he had wooed her in her days of girlish
loveliness, and fed by the dole with which he had silenced his remorse,
until she had counted her half century of sorrow; then, weary and worn
out in mind and body, she sunk into the grave, with none to mourn over
her, none to treasure any memorial of her existence. Hubert, of course,
took possession of her few effects. He found among her papers a lock of
sunny brown hair, which he well remembered to have given her, and the
cruel letter which had announced his marriage. There were no
love-gifts—he had been too cautious to commit himself by such trifles.
As he sat alone in that dreary old parlor, with its sombre paper, its
dark carpet, its high-backed perpendicular chairs, and that dreadfully
monotonous clock ticking as loudly as if it would fain awaken the
conscience of the solitary occupant of that melancholy apartment, he
felt a superstitious awe steal over him which he could not overcome. He
threw the letter and the lock of hair into the smouldering embers of the
wood fire upon the hearth, and as the flame leaped up to consume those
remnants of the past, the drooping figure of Minnie Clifton stood
between him and the sudden blaze. A wild cry broke from his lips, he
started from his seat, and at that moment a servant unclosed the door.
To the day of his death Hubert Woodley believed that by the mysterious
agency of fire, burning as it did into the very soul of that mystery
which involved the happiness of a human being, he had called up the
spectre of the wronged and joyless object of his early love—the victim
of his selfishness—whose whole life had been like a dull and dreary
dream.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                                 SONG.


                BY THOMAS FITZGERALD, EDITOR CITY ITEM.


    Ah! do not speak so coldly,
      Cold words my heart will chill;
    If I have loved too boldly,
      Oh, let me worship still.

    The pure heart loves forever,
      To its own likeness true,
    And though fate bids us sever,
      I’ll love, I’ll love but you!

    The heart will throb in sorrow
      If from its idol torn,
    Nor elsewhere joy will borrow
      If love’s return be scorn.

    Then do not speak so coldly,
      Cold words my heart will chill;
    E’en if I’ve loved too boldly,
      Oh, let me worship still.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                             IBAD’S VISION.


                         BY RICHARD PENN SMITH.


Ibad the Dervise, instead of feeling proud in the right of the Source of
All Good, shrunk from his sight as if unworthy of the hand that had
fashioned him. He did not worship as the birds and children worship,
with songs and joy, but he built himself a cell, and there, in solitude,
worshiped his God, amidst groans and torture screaming—“Yahu, ya allah!
I am not a Naeshbendee, and live not among sinful men.” The birds and
the children in their simplicity thank the Prophet, and even while dying
sing their gratitude. Ibad worshiped in suffering, believing that
temporal torment, self-inflicted, would be acceptable in the sight of
him who gave all to render man happy. The children and the birds
understand God’s dispensations better than did Ibad the dervise.

Ibad slept and had a vision. He beheld a broad and extended path over a
verdant meadow, where balmy breezes sported in the sunbeams. A stalwort
figure suddenly appeared, with head erect, front of pride, and with eyes
that quailed not while staring at the eye of day. Onward he strode, and
seemed to spurn even the path he trod, and as he gazed at the sun, his
shadow that dogged his heels was tenfold his colossal stature; yet the
shadow was willing to follow, without an attempt to lead the way. The
figure was Ambition; the shadow Dependence, hunting in his trail.

Onward they strode. The pathway was strewed with flowers and tempting
fruit, when suddenly a fascinating figure stept beside Ambition—it was
Friendship, and Friendship cast his shadow also—a shadow as substantial
as the substance.

The four marched proudly on, Ambition, Friendship and their shadows, and
as they traversed the level pathway they mutually laughed,
self-satisfied—Friendship smiled and simpered, while Ambition chuckled
in his sleeve.

A change came over Ibad’s vision. The sun was overshadowed, murky clouds
hung over their path, and Ambition entered a wilderness where no light
glimmered to guide him; he knew that Death had spread a snare before
every footstep; but he knew not where the pitfall had been spread.

Ambition, as he entered this dark passage, looked up to the heavens for
light, but the sun was sleeping; he turned to his gay companion
Friendship who had prattled over the flowery meadows in the sunshine,
but Friendship was not there; he looked behind him—all was darkness,
and even the sycophantic shadow that had crawled at his kibes had
deserted him. Ambition exclaimed in bitter irony—“Can I not, in the
dark day of my progress leave even a shadow behind me! Have both
Friendship and my shadow vanished together because a cloud is upon me!
Forward; emerge from the present gloom, and the sun will laugh in your
eye to-morrow, and then you will find Friendship with his cheerful face,
simpering beside you, and your shadow will assume ten fold its former
dimensions, will mimick more accurately every motion of your body, and
stick more closely to your heel while you walk in the sunshine.”

The morning sun arose, and as Ambition emerged from his dark and thorny
pathway, his road became light, broad and fragrant. The fresh breeze was
as wine to his wearied spirit, and he winked and smiled at the sun in
the pride of his manhood. Friendship came up smiling beside him, and as
they again walked together, their tall dark shadows followed closely
upon their heels, fantastically mimicking their motions, as if even
their shadows were endeavoring to deceive each other.

They now approached a precipice. Their path became narrow, and still
more narrow as they ascended, until finally Friendship jostled Ambition
in endeavoring to maintain his foothold, at the same time striving to
take the lead. Even their unsubstantial shadows jostled each other in
like manner. “The path hath become too narrow for us two,” cried
Ambition, as he coolly hurled Friendship headlong down the precipice,
without even casting a glance upon his destruction.

He was now alone, without even the shadow of Friendship to sustain him;
still onward he strode up the dizzy height, while his own shadow, at
every step, diminished in its immense proportions. At length his course
was intercepted by a perpendicular barrier, upon which there was no safe
foothold. He looked behind him and discovered that his shadow had
departed; he looked down upon his feet to ascertain upon what safe
pedestal he stood, and lo! there was nothing more substantial than the
heels of his shadow to sustain him; its gigantic outline had dwindled to
a pigmy. He raised his proud head and exclaimed exultingly—“but one
daring leap is required to surmount this obstruction, and then all will
be sunshine!” He made the leap; he touched the rocking pinnacle where
all his hopes were perched; his shadow, true to him in sunshine
followed, but he found no foothold there, for in an instant he
overtoppled and fell on the other side, and he and his shadow
disappeared forever.

“And is it so?” cried Ibad as he awoke. “Is the path of life too narrow
to admit of Friendship without being jostled, and too dangerous for
Ambition to tread in safety; and must that proud being disappear as a
meteor, without leaving behind even a shadow of his existence! Yahu, ya
allah! Praise to thee! I am no Naeshbendee, and live not among sinful
men!”

Ibad retired to his solitary cell, where he feared not the selfish
duplicity of Friendship, and as his sole ambition was to worship the
Prophet, he apprehended no barrier in his pathway; and though he might
disappear from the eye of man as a shadow, he felt that the shadow he
had cast in this world would be gathered up, and become substance in the
sight of God through eternity in the next.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                       A HARMLESS GLASS OF WINE.


                          BY KATE SUTHERLAND.


                            [SEE ENGRAVING.]

“Rose, dear,” said Mrs. Carleton to her daughter, whom she met at the
door of the dining-room, with a decanter of wine and glasses on a
waiter, “who is in the parlor?”

“Mr. Newton,” replied the young girl.

“The young man from New York?”

“Yes.”

“You are going to take him wine?”

“Yes. It is only hospitable to offer him some refreshment.”

Mrs. Carleton stood with her eyes resting on the floor for some moments,
in a thoughtful attitude.

“I rather think, Rose,” said she, as she lifted her eyes to her
daughter’s face, “that it would be as well not to hand him wine.”

“Why, mother?” inquired Rose, looking curious.

“We know nothing of the young man’s previous life and habits.”

“Why do you say that, mother?” asked Rose, who did not comprehend the
meaning of what had been uttered.

“He may have been intemperate.”

“Mother! How can you imagine such a thing?”

“I know nothing of him whatever, my child,” replied Mrs. Carleton, “and
do not wish to wrong him by an unkind suspicion. My suggestion is
nothing more than the dictate of a humane prudence. I have recently had
my thoughts turned to the subject of intemperance, and, by many forcible
illustrations, have been led to see that the use of even wine,
unrestrictedly, is fraught with much danger. We never can know whose
perverted taste we may inflame, when we set even wine before guests of
whose history we know nothing. It is, therefore, wiser to refrain. But
you have left Mr. Newton alone, and must not linger here. Do not,
however, present him with wine. After he is gone we will talk on this
subject again; when I think you will be satisfied that my present advice
is good.”

Rose left the wine on the sideboard, and went back to the parlor,
wondering at what she had heard. After the young man had gone away, she
joined her mother, when the latter said—

“You seemed surprised at my remarks a little while ago; and I was,
perhaps, as much surprised when like suggestions were made to me. But
when, from indisputable evidence, we become aware that our actions may
wrong others, we are bound by every consideration to guard against such
injurious results. You know how painfully afflicted the family of Mr.
Delaney has been, in consequence of the intemperate habits of Morton?”

“Yes. Poor Flora! the last time I was with her, he passed us in the
street so much intoxicated that he almost staggered. Her heart was so
full that she could not speak, and when I left her, a little while
afterward, her eyes were ready to gush over with tears.”

“Unhappy young man! So young, and yet so abandoned.”

“Until I met him, as just said, I thought he had reformed his bad habit
of drinking,” said Rose.

“It was in order to refer to this fact that I mentioned his name just
now,” returned her mother. “He did attempt to do better, and for some
months kept fast hold of his good resolutions. But, in an evil hour, he
fell, and his temptress was a young girl of your own age, Rose. A few
weeks ago he went to New York on business. While there, he visited the
house of a relative, where wine was presented to him by a beautiful
cousin, and he had not the resolution to refuse the sparkling draught.
He tasted, and—you have seen the result.”

“Oh, mother!” exclaimed Rose, “I would not have that cousin’s feelings
for the world!”

“She acted as innocently as you would have done just now, my daughter.”

“Was she not aware of his weakness?”

“No. Nor had she ever been told that for one whose taste is vitiated, it
is dangerous, in the highest degree, to take even a glass of wine.”

“I am so glad that I did not offer wine to Mr. Newton!” said Rose,
drawing a long breath.

“Mr. Newton,” returned the mother, “may never have used intoxicating
drinks to excess. He may not be in danger from a glass of wine.”

“But I know nothing of his previous life.”

“And, therefore, it is wisest to take counsel of prudence. This is just
what I want you to see for yourself. To such an extent has intemperance
prevailed in this country, that the whole community, to a certain
extent, have perverted appetites, which are excited so inordinately by
any kind of stimulating drink as to destroy, in too many instances, all
self-control. Another case, even more painful to contemplate than that
of Morton Delaney, occurred in this city last week. I heard of it a day
or two since. A beautiful young girl was addressed by a gentleman who
had recently removed here from the South; and her friends seeing nothing
about him to warrant disapprobation, made no objection to his suit. An
engagement soon followed, and the wedding was celebrated a few days ago.
The father of the bride gave a brilliant entertainment to a large and
elegant company. The choicest wines were used more freely than water,
and the young husband drank with the rest. Alas! before the evening
closed he was so much intoxicated that he had to be separated from the
company; and, what is worse, he has not been sober for an hour since.”

“Oh, what a sad, sad thing!” exclaimed Rose.

“It is sad, sad indeed! What an awakening from a dream of exquisite
happiness was that of the beautiful bride! It now appears that the young
man had fallen into habits of dissipation, and afterward reformed. On
his wedding night he could not refuse a glass of wine. A single draught
sufficed to rekindle the old fire, that was smouldering, not
extinguished. He fell, and, so far, has not risen from his fall, and may
never rise.”

“You frighten me!” said Rose, while a shudder went through her frame. “I
never dreamed of such danger in a glass of wine. Pure wine I have always
looked upon as a good thing. I did not think that it would lead any one
into danger.”

[Illustration: W. P. Frith       W. H. Egleton

ROSE CARLTON.
Engraved expressly for Graham’s Magazine]

“Even the best of things, my child, may be turned to an evil purpose.
The heat and light of the sun is received by one plant and changed into
a poison, while another converts it into healthy and nourishing food.
Pure wine will not excite a healthy appetite, although it may madden one
that has become morbid through intemperance. Here is the distinction
that ought to be made.”

“Is it not dangerous, then, to serve wine in promiscuous companies?”

“Undoubtedly. I did not think so a little while ago, because the subject
was not presented to my mind in the light that it now is. To this custom
I can well believe that hundreds who had begun the work of restricting
their craving appetites owe their downfall. Where all are partaking, the
temptation to join in is almost irresistible; especially, as a refusal
might create a suspicion against the individual that he was afraid to
trust himself.”

“I will be very careful how I offer wine to any one again,” said Rose.
“I would not have the guilt of tempting a man to ruin upon my conscience
for all the world.”

“The more I ponder the subject,” remarked Mrs. Carleton, “the more
surprised am I at myself and others. I invite some friends to an
entertainment, or to spend a social evening, and I serve wine to my
guests. Among them is a man who has fallen into intemperate habits at
one time of life, and whose present sobriety is dependent upon his rigid
observance of the rule of total abstinence. He is, it may be, the
husband of my most cherished friend. I place wine before him with the
rest. He is tempted to break his rule, and falls. Ah, me! How many
hundreds of such cases occur in our large cities.”

Mrs. Carleton was a widow in easy circumstances, and moved in
fashionable society. She entertained a good deal of company, and did it
in the fashionable way. When gentlemen called at her house, wine was
invariably set before them; and when she gave parties, wine was always
served to her guests. But, suddenly startled into reflection, she saw
that the practice was a dangerous one, and determined to abandon it. On
this resolution she acted, much to the surprise of many of her
acquaintances. Some said she was “queer,”—others decided that it was a
foolish notion; while others pronounced her conduct positively absurd.
But she did not in the least swerve from her purpose. Wine was no more
placed before her guests.

The visits of Mr. Newton to Rose, which at first were only occasional,
became more and more frequent. A mutual attachment ensued, which ended
in marriage. No wine was provided at the wedding party—to many a
strange omission—and Rose observed that at the parties given them by
friends her husband invariably let the wine pass him untasted. Curious
to know the reason for such abstemiousness, she one day, some months
after marriage, said to him—

“Do you never drink wine?”

The question caused Newton to look serious; and he replied in a simple
monosyllable.

“Don’t you like it?” inquired Rose.

“Yes; too well perhaps.”

The way in which this was said half startled the young wife. Newton saw
the effect of his words, and forcing a smile said—

“When quite a young man, I was thrown much into gay company, and there
acquired a bad habit of using all kinds of intoxicating drinks with a
dangerous freedom. Before I was conscious of my error, I was verging on
rapidly to the point of losing all self-control. Startled at finding
myself in such a position, I made a resolution to abandon the use of
every thing but wine. This, however, did not reach the evil. The taste
of wine excited my appetite to such a degree that I invariably resorted
to brandy for its gratification. I then abandoned the use of wine, as
the only safe course for me, and, with occasional exceptions, have
strictly adhered to my resolution. In a few instances young ladies, at
whose houses I visited, have presented me with wine, and not wishing to
push back the proffered refreshment, I have tasted it. The consequence
was invariable. A burning desire for stronger stimulants was awakened,
that carried me away as by an irresistible power. You, Rose, never
tempted me in this way. Had you done so, we might not have been as happy
as we are to-day.”

A shudder passed through the frame of the young wife, as she remembered
the glass of wine she had been so near presenting to his lips. Never
afterward could she think of it without an inward tremor. And fears for
the future mingled with her thoughts of the past; but these have proved
groundless fears, for Mr. Newton has no temptation at home, and he has
resolution enough to refuse a glass of wine in any company, and on all
occasions. Herein lies his safety.

“What! refuse a harmless glass of wine?” will sometimes be said to him.
To this he has but one answer.

“Pure wine may be harmless in itself; so is light—yet light will
destroy an inflamed eye.”

                 *        *        *        *        *



                              NORTHAMPTON.


                         BY HENRY T. TUCKERMAN.


    Ere from thy calm seclusion parted,
      O fairest village of the plain!
    The thoughts that here to life have started
      Draw me to Nature’s heart again.

    The tasseled maize, full grain, or clover,
      Far o’er the level meadow grows,
    And through it, like a wayward rover,
      The noble river gently flows.

    Majestic elms, with trunks unshaken
      By all the storms an age can bring,
    Frail sprays whose rest the zephyrs waken,
      Yet lithesome with the juice of spring.

    By sportive airs the foliage lifted,
      Each green leaf shows its white below,
    As foam on emerald waves is drifted,
      Their tints alternate come and go.

    And then the skies! when vapors cluster
      From zenith to horizon’s verge,
    As wild gusts ominously bluster,
      And in deep shade the landscape merge;—

    Under the massive cloud’s low border,
      Where hill-tops with the sky unite,
    Like an old minster’s blazoned warder,
      There scintillates an amber light.

    Sometimes a humid fleece reposes
     Midway upon the swelling ridge,
    Like an aerial couch of roses,
      Or Dairy’s amethystine bridge:

    And pale green inlets lucid shimmer,
      With huge cliffs jutting out beside,
    Like those in mountain lakes that glimmer,
      Tinged like the ocean’s crystal tide:

    Or saffron-tinted islands planted
      In firmaments of azure dye,
    With pearly mounds that loom undaunted,
      And float like icebergs of the sky.

    Like autumn leaves that eddying falter,
      Yet settle to their crimson rest,
    As pilgrims round their burning altar,
      They slowly gather in the west.

    And when the distant mountain ranges
     In moonlight or blue mist are clad,
    Oft memory all the landscape changes,
      And pensive thoughts are blent with glad.

    For then, as in a dream Elysian,
      Val d’Arno’s fair and loved domain
    Seems to my rapt yet waking vision,
      To yield familiar charms again.

    Save that for dome and turret hoary,
      Amid the central valley lies
    A white church-spire unknown to story,
      And smoke-wreaths from a cottage rise.

    On Holyoke’s summit woods are frowning,
      No line of cypresses we see,
    Nor convent old with beauty crowning
      The heights of sweet Fiésole.

    Yet here may willing eyes discover
      The art and life of every shore,
    For Nature bids her patient lover
      All true similitudes explore.

    These firs, when cease their boughs to quiver,
      Stand like pagodas brahmins seek,
    Yon isle, that parts the winding river,
      Seems modeled from a light caique.

    And fanes that in these groves are hidden,
      Are sculptured like a dainty frieze,
    While choral music steals unbidden,
      As undulates the forest breeze.

    A gothic arch and springing column,
      A floral-dyed, mosaic ground,
    A twilight shade and vista solemn
      In all these sylvan haunts are found.

    And now this fragile garland weaving
      While ebbs the musing tide away,
    As one a sacred temple leaving,
      Some tribute on its shrine would lay;

    I bless the scenes whose tranquil beauty
      Have cheered me like the sense of youth,
    And freshened lonely tasks of duty,
      The dream of love and zest of truth.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                               A THOUGHT.


                        BY ISAAC GRAY BLANCHARD.


    The flower springs by the fountain-side,
      And blooms its little day;
    Speechless it lives the life it has,
      And silent fades away.
    O, I would not be like the flower,
      To perish in the mould,
    And leave no record of my heart,
      No fond affection told.

    Let beauty be to others given,
      And beautiful array—
    To those who, like the flower, are but
      Ambitious to be gay;
    I only ask the pen, the tongue,
      That can the heart unfold,
    That the deep beauty of the soul
      Be not unsung, untold.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                       THE VILLAGE SCHOOLMASTER.


                            BY C. M. FARMER.


Gentle reader! allow me to introduce to your consideration the
characters of Mr. Brigs, (_soi disant_ Allen Brigs, Esquire,) and his
distinguished lady Mrs. Polly Brigs. Imagine a stout built, corpulent
“five footer,” with a very big head, on which there never was hair
enough to make a decent pair of whiskers, and on which, consequently,
rode a red wig, curled as many different ways as the sunbeams point;
with the largest of all large noses, into which he incessantly—or at
least fifty times in each day—thrust the raw rappee with no small
degree of relish; little pop-eyes, just large enough to see every body
in church at one and the same time; a blue silk vest, striped cassimere
pantaloons, a leviathian shad-belly coat, and a milk-white cravat tied
in a double bow before, and surrounding a collar made _partly_ of very
coarse linen, and _mostly_ of very stiff starch, which came up on either
side to his ears, sustaining the equilibrium of his head. Of course, his
head could only move in two directions—backward and forward—without
manifest danger to the implements of hearing thereto attached, all set
off by a pair of cork-sole boots six and a quarter inches across the
instep when on, the toes of which looked right into the master’s face;
and here you have Allen Brigs—alias, Mr. A. Brigs, Esquire.

Mr. Brigs had undoubtedly seen the eclipses of a great many years.
According to his own averment, he had “waded through as many snows as
there were hairs on his wig;” and as he had repeated this averment so
many times, and nobody had ever evinced any inclination to contest the
point with him, he had persuaded himself that he was _ipso facto_, a
“very old man.” Be this as it may, Mr. Allen Brigs was not the man to be
eschewed for his aged stupidity. He was amusing and buoyant as a boy. He
never took the unnecessary trouble to correct himself for errors in
language, no matter how gross, but would leave that to be done by any
body who chose to “take it up.” If he was asked if it was Jonah who
swallowed the whale, he would reply in the affirmative, and when
corrected, would invariably answer—“Zooks! it’s all the same in
Dutch—just _vice versa_, as the lawyers say—that’s all!”

In short, Mr. Allen Brigs was a man not to be scared by any “livin’
warmint,” two-legged, or four-legged, male or female—a perfect man of
the world in business—“a real out and outer”—crushing all opposition
to his own schemes, and believing in his heart that every body was a
fool who did not coincide in all things with him, Mr. Allen Brigs.

Mrs. Brigs was some ten years the junior of her partner in life, and was
a lady in every sense of the word. It was evident that she had _once_
been beautiful, but that once had been past a long time; and now, where
then dangled the glossy curls, (not _false_ curls—girls never wore
false curls in those days,) she displayed two huge bows of yellow
ribbon. These were necessary ornaments, however, for they were
appendages to a very neat frilled cap. Mrs. Brigs had never been known
to wear a stay-body frock, or a bustle—indeed, such things were not
then in fashion—she never wore sleeves of the mutton-leg cut; nor were
they ever so tight as to render the arms useless members, but always
large enough and small enough to be comfortable. Mrs. Brigs never could
endure small shoes—consequently, she never was compelled to endure the
pains incident to corns. She was an inflexible knitter and darner, and
though Mr. Brigs never had but one pair of socks, they never had a hole
in them, because whenever the legs wore out she would leg them, and when
the feet wore out she would foot them. Mrs. Brigs was so good
herself—so artless and unsuspecting, that she thought every body else
was good, and artless, and unsuspecting too. Mrs. Brigs was literally
the very woman for Mr. Brigs, and that gentleman was the very man for
Mrs. Brigs. Hence, it can only be inferred that they lived happily
together—so happily, indeed, and contentedly, that they were known but
to be loved. A peaceful country village was their home. A ten acre farm
of fertile land, through which murmured a dear, bright stream

        “That wound in many a flow’ry nook,”

was the _fee simple_ property of Allen Brigs. A pretty little
white-washed house, almost hidden by the clustering fruit-trees, was
their humble tenement. A handsome little garden, tastefully laid out,
occupied the space between the house and rivulet, and here Mrs. Brigs
sought recreation when burthened with the _ennui_ of knitting and
darning. A cow and calf—a sow and pig—a horse, and a yard full of
poultry of every species, composed the family stock. And with all these,
and nothing more, they were rich—rich in the honesty of their own
hearts which knew no covetousness—contentment was theirs, and that was
riches. They were surrounded by kind neighbors—some affluent, but not
aristocratic. An athletic son of sixteen, and a beautiful daughter of
twelve, were their only offspring. Solomon Brigs was his father’s sole
help, but they managed every thing to admiration. Nanny was a sweet
tempered child—affectionate and dutiful. Every body loved her, and she
loved every body. Notwithstanding she was a country girl, there was a
native, witching, fascinating grace in her every movement. She was so
active, and gay, and cheerful—so full of life and joy—and so mild and
modest! She had never known sickness: health flowed through every vein,
and glowed in her soft dark eyes and blooming cheeks—and her smiling
face was a sure index to her pure heart. Her finely shaped head, and
intelligent forehead, bore testimony to her keen susceptibilities.

Solomon was a smart boy—so said his knowing father; and though he had
made no higher attainments than reading, writing, and cyphering to the
single rule of three, he knew how to plough the corn, and hill the
potatoes, and weed his sister’s flower-beds. He could not solve a
problem in mathematics, but he could jump higher and hallo louder than
any boy in the village, large or small.

Nanny was a proficient in the art of housekeeping, but not in French,
painting, &c. &c. She, too, could read, write, and cypher, and Mr. Brigs
considered that enough book learning for _his_ children. It was all _he_
knew, and there was danger in too much. But we come now to give our
characters a more conspicuous place in the public mind.

It was one cold morning in December, when the snow was thick on the
ground, and a luxuriant fire was blazing on every hearth in the village,
and when nobody living would have thought of visiting, except Miss
Lachevers, the housekeeper of John Doe, next door neighbor to the
Brigses, No. 10 Lachevers’ lane. As I said, it was cold—extremely cold;
but Miss Lachevers, No. 10 Lachevers’ lane, did not regard cold weather.
Now, whether a _young_ lady, living to the age of forty odd, becomes
invulnerable to the piercing air of a December morning, or whether the
young lady in question was differently constituted from other people, I
shall not attempt to decide—probably the latter. Nevertheless, on this
same morning, almost as soon as the sun showed his face, Miss Lachevers
peeped in at the door of Allen Brigs. Mr. Brigs was drying the morning’s
paper by the fire, while Mrs. Brigs busied herself “clearing away” the
breakfast table. Solomon and Nanny were both reading from the same book,
the story of “Aladdin’s Lamp.”

“Good mornin’ to you,” said Miss Lachevers, introducing her body as well
as her head—“cool mornin’ this.”

“Rather,” replied Mr. Brigs senior, laying down the paper and rubbing
the palms of his hands hard enough together to erase the skin. “Come to
the fire, Betty—be seated—have off your bonnet.”

The finishing clause of this address proceeded from the voluble tongue
of Mrs. Brigs; and Nanny arose from her seat to hand Miss Lachevers a
chair.

“Don’t trouble yourself, child—I never have time to sit. I must go back
in one second. It’s trot, trot, from mornin’ till night, with me. I just
stepped in,” she continued, turning her eyes on Mrs. Brigs, “to ask you
all if you’ve hearn the news?”

“What news?” inquired Mr. Brigs senior, glancing first at the paper on
the chair and then at the early visiter—“any body dead or dying—or any
steamship busted—or any thing of that species?”

“Oh, no!” said Miss Lachevers, “nothin’ of that are character. But
somethin’ more important and _novel_ than either.”

All eyes were now turned toward the significant countenance of Miss
Betty Lachevers, who still remained standing. Mr. Brigs senior, not
exactly understanding the application of the word “novel” to the sudden
intelligence of any thing new—having never heard it applied to any
thing but a book—requested Miss Lachevers to explain herself. Mrs.
Brigs insisted that Betty should take a chair and tell all about it; and
Solomon and Nanny continued their reading, as if nothing _novel_ was
going on.

“Why, raly,” said Miss Lachevers, drawing a seat, and depositing her
person thereon, “I haint hardly got time to tell you. But it’s wonderful
to think of. The fact is, a young schoolmaster arrived in town last
night, and I hear it’s his intention to set up a school here for the
eddication of youth; and the worst of all is, nobody knows who he is, or
where he come from. His name I heered, but I almost forgot it—it’s
Dubbs—or Grubbs—or Dobbs—or somethin’ like that. They say he’s a
wonderful genus, smart as can be, and full of larning. He stopped at old
Jenkins’s, cross the way—whether he means to board there _I_ can’t
say—but there he is. I s’pose we’ll get a peep at him to-day. For my
part, I should like to know why he put up at old Jenkins’s.”

“A schoolmaster!” repeated Mr. Brigs, the elder, with emphatic surprise.

“Yes—a reg’lar built, yankee schoolmaster,” replied Miss Betty.

“Come to teach the children how that the earth revolves round the sun,
instead of the sun revolving round the earth, and things of that
extravagant natur’, I s’pose?”

“To be sure he will,” said the young lady, “and he’ll be after coaxin’
your children into his notions—see if he don’t.”

“Not he!” consequentially returned the old man—“Sol has too much sense
for any Yankee that ever lived yet; and I guess Nanny will have enough
to do to larn of her mother. Not he!” and Mr. Brigs inflicted two slaps
on the left side pocket of his blue vest.

Mrs. Brigs sighed, and Miss Lachevers coughed—whether for want of
something to say, or to render what she had said complete, it matters
not—but she coughed, and bidding a hasty adieu, left the room.

Mr. Brigs settled himself down to read the paper, and his lady settled
herself down to her favorite exercise—knitting; while Solomon and Nanny
repeated to each other surmises as to the probable appearance of the new
comer—his age—dress, &c.

The day passed away, and night came on. Tea was over, and this happy
little family had gathered around the cheerful fire. A gentle tap was
heard at the door, and a voice pronouncing the simple
word—“housekeepers.”

“Come in,” responded Mrs. Brigs, and in came Mr. Jenkins, followed by a
young man apparently about twenty-two, with black hair and eyes,
straight, tall, and erect, handsome, and of a genteel and prepossessing
appearance, who was introduced by his conductor as Mr. Timothy Dobbs.

“My friend,” said Mr. Jenkins, after being seated, and taking an
accurate survey of the premises, “has come among us for the purpose, he
says, of opening a school. He is an orphan, of very superior
endowments—brings with him ample credentials of his capacity, and
expects to find patronage for his support from the inhabitants of our
village.”

Mr. Dobbs bowed a concurrence in the remarks of Mr. Jenkins, and hoped
that Mr. Brigs could furnish him with board and a convenient room in his
house.

“Ah, that’s it!” said Mr. Jenkins, recollecting the object of his
visit—“that’s what we’re a coming to. This gentleman, Mr. Brigs, wishes
to reside in your family, and to eat at your table, sir. I hope—I
s’pose you can accommodate him, Mr. Brigs?”

Mr. Brigs said that he could, and that he should be happy to serve him,
Mr. Dobbs, in any other manner possible. Matters being thus considered,
and terms agreed on, Mr Jenkins arose to depart; having first satisfied
Mr. Dobbs that he, Dobbs, would be sure to sleep soundly that night, and
assured him of the total absence of all danger from external assaults
under the roof of so great and good a man as his friend and neighbor
Allen Brigs.

Before retiring to rest, Mr. Dobbs acquainted himself with the
characters before him, by conversing with them, and each of them, on
various topics; and found to his satisfaction that they were kind and
noble-hearted people. The characteristic traits of Mr. Brigs were rough
and unique, yet there was a generous frankness about him—such a flow of
spirits and good humor—that he considered him a pleasant man. Nor was
Mrs. Brigs unlike her husband in these particulars. To tell the truth,
Mr. Dobbs was pleased. More than once did he get a full view of the
sweet face of Nanny; and more than once did Nanny blush to catch his
eye. Timothy admired her modest looks, and fancied that he _might_ one
day love her. He wondered how old she was, and blest his luck that he
had fallen into that particular family, where such a beautiful face as
hers might shed its sunny smiles about him—perhaps to cheer many of his
tedious moments. He fancied she _must_ be young, yet she seemed already
expanding into womanhood. Such perfect symmetry of form, and grace of
carriage, he had never seen in a country girl: and then the rich
intelligence that beamed through her soft dark eyes, convinced him that
she was born to follow some more noble pursuit than housewifery.

The hour grew late, and Timothy bade good-night, and crept softly to his
room, where fatigue soon lulled him to sleep. But he dreamed! Yes, he
dreamed of one sweet angelic being, whom he had only seen once—only
once—and that sweet being was Nanny!

“Zooks!” said Mr. Brigs, after Timothy had left the parlor—“but he
seems to be a clever youth. Nanny, what do you think of him—eh?”

“I don’t know, father,” replied Nanny—“but—I think—he’s quite
handsome.”

“Handsome! Yes, and I reckon he considered Miss Nanny Brigs a leetle
specimen of the handsomest girl he ever saw. I saw him a squintin’ on
that side of the house.”

“Oh, father!” cried Nanny, faintly blushing. “I’m sure he _looked_ at us
all—he looked at Solomon, too.”

“What’s his name, father?” inquired Solomon—“Stobbs?”

“Dobbs—Timothy Dobbs, I think, and that’s all I know about him yet: but
we’ll find what kind of a chap he is soon, I guess. I expect he’s a
squirt, any how.”

“I hope not,” said Mrs. Brigs.

“And I hope not, too,” rejoined Mr. Brigs; “but we’ll see!”

                 *        *        *        *        *

Time sped on. The village school was in a flourishing condition. Pupil
after pupil had been added to the charge of Mr. Timothy Dobbs, the
“great unknown,” until (to use a cant phrase) he had his hands full. It
is very natural to suppose that our village schoolmaster had become very
popular among all the villagers, and particularly so in the discerning
eyes of Miss Betty Lachevers, No. 10 Lachevers’ lane. Notwithstanding
the violent protestations of Mr. Brigs against the idea of suffering his
children to become scholars of Mr. Dobbs, the old gentleman had
confessed his wrong in that respect, and now protested with the same
vehemence, that Mr. Timothy Dobbs was the finest fellow that ever lived;
and that it would be high treason in any parent or guardian to refuse
children and wards generally, the benefits of Mr. Dobbs’s seminary of
learning; and he (Mr. Brigs) was firmly of the opinion that Solomon and
Nanny would one day become the successors of their tutor in the office
of “eddicating youth;” and on this hypothesis, he built the future
prospect of the erection of the “Brigs’ College,” to be called after his
own name, and of which, as a matter of course, Solomon was to be
principal professor. Mr. Brigs saw all this as clear as a whistle, and
he had no doubt that his prophecy would be fulfilled. Mr. Dobbs
continued to board and lodge at Mr. Brigs’ house. Nanny grew more lovely
and interesting every day, and made rapid advancement in her studies.
Solomon declared that Mr. Dobbs paid more attention to his sister than
to any other young lady in the school—to her instructions he meant; and
that he believed seriously, that Mr. Dobbs had a notion of making her
his assistant—in the school he meant. Miss Lachevers always happened to
hoist the window of Mr. Doe’s parlor at the particular moment when the
schoolmaster, Nanny, and Solomon passed the gate, on their return from
school; and as it was as invariably the case that Mr. Dobbs walked
closer to Nanny’s side than Solomon’s, the former young lady never
failed to give her features an expression of scorn—at least, whenever
her eye met Nanny’s. It might have been necessary for Miss Betty to
hoist the window on all these occasions, for some domestic purpose, such
as dusting, &c., and therefore she could not help seeing the passers by;
she, however, at such times looked unusually prim, but Mr. Dobbs seemed,
in every case, unconscious that the eyes of any third person were upon
him, for he never turned his on either side, but looked straight
forward. One day Nanny actually had her arm in that of the schoolmaster,
when the walking was very bad on account of snow, and then Miss
Lachevers looked daggers, and from thenceforth her deportment toward our
innocent heroine grew cold and formal. Perhaps Miss Betty had different
views of village etiquette from other young ladies, and thought it
extremely rude for a young lady to lock arms with a gentleman, under an
acquaintance of four years and a half; or perhaps she considered the law
of primogeniture applicable to her individual case, and thought that if
_any_ body was to lock arms with the schoolmaster, it should be herself,
as she was _rather_ older than Miss Nanny Brigs. Nevertheless, she did
not make her visits to Mr. Brigs’s less frequent. She would
sometimes—though altogether accidentally—chance to “fall in” when Mr.
Dobbs was there; and whenever that event occurred, she made herself
extremely agreeable—so she thought. But Mr. Dobbs was a sober-minded
man, of keen perception and sound views of propriety, and could read her
writing as well as she could herself. Nor was it long ere his disgust
was manifested at her sociable behavior, which caused her to bestow upon
him the classic epithet of “itinerant pedagogue.” And now matters took
another turn.

A year had passed away since the “itinerant pedagogue” first opened his
school. The population of the village had considerably increased. Uncle
Sam had established a post-office there. Lachevers’ lane was become the
principal thoroughfare of the “town.” Stores—groceries—and tailor’s
shops had been erected; sign-boards hung out and nailed to the window
shutters. A handsome church “with tapering spire,” and surrounded by
young trees, was now the Sabbath rendezvous of the villagers. The
school-house had been enlarged—the play-ground enclosed—and every
thing wore a new aspect. Miss Betty Lachevers, after exhausting all her
efforts to captivate Timothy Dobbs, had abandoned him to the more
attractive charms of Miss Brigs; and the former young lady was now
scarcely ever seen, save at church on Sundays. A Sabbath-school had been
opened in the basement-room of the village church, of which Timothy was
superintendent, and Solomon and Nanny teachers; and the signs of the
times bade fair to verify the predictions of Mr. Brigs with regard to
colleges, &c. in general. But, still _all was not right_! Timothy had
declared his love to Nanny, and had received an answer of satisfaction.
He had solicited the consent of her parents, and had received a
REFUSAL!! Not that Mr. Brigs thought him unworthy of the hand of his
daughter, but because his history was still enveloped in mystery and
obscurity. Mr. Jenkins and Mr. Brigs, and Mrs. Jenkins and Mrs. Brigs,
and half a dozen more misters and mistresses, had used all means to find
out his origin, but to no effect. He would always, when spoken to on
that point, fall into a state of dejected gloom, and evade all questions
bearing on his nativity; and this was a barrier which intervened between
him and the object of his affections.

A large oil painting ornamented the wall over the fire-place,
representing a young mother, with an infant on her breast, reclining on
the left arm of a man, who was defending her with his right, from the
assaults of a ruffian. A beautiful girl lay weltering in blood near the
surviving group; and the husband seemed to have received several
dangerous wounds, from which large drops of blood were falling. It was a
scene of deep and thrilling interest, and expressive of some awful
tragedy. It was also well executed, and the languishing despair which
beamed from the face of the young mother would almost seem, at times, to
convert the painted canvas into a mass of animation. At this picture Mr.
Dobbs was often seen to gaze with sad countenance and quivering lip;
while the throbbings of his temples told that the mind was at work with
melancholy thoughts. He became sad and cheerless, avoided all company
(but Nanny’s) as much as possible, and was sometimes found weeping. Yet
none knew the cause of his silent grief. Nanny observed the effect which
had been wrought on him by the picture, and communicated the fact to her
mother.

“He seems,” said she, “to take a sad pleasure in looking at the
painting. He showed me a miniature yesterday, which is the express image
of the lady with the infant child in her arms; and when I had examined
it, and returned it to him, he pressed it to his lips, and the tears
fell from his eyes. There must be something strange connected with his
history!”

“And did he say nothing about the miniature or the painting?” inquired
Mr. Brigs.

“Nothing!” replied Nanny, “I saw the subject gave him pain, and I feared
to ask him any thing about it.”

“Where is the miniature?” asked Mrs. Brigs.

“He keeps it in his vest pocket,” answered Nanny. “I will beg him to
show it to you, mother—I know he will.”

“No, child—don’t. I will inquire into the secret myself. But Nanny, did
you never hear the story of the painting over the fire?”

“No,” said Nanny; “what is it?”

“Ah! it’s an awful thing—all true as Gospel—dreadful!”

Here Mrs. Brigs requested her daughter to ask her no questions, and she
would tell her some other time. The young girl’s fears were excited, but
she concealed them within her own bosom.

                 *        *        *        *        *

“Mr. Dobbs,” said Mrs. Brigs one evening, “what on earth ails you? You
look like you have lost the best friend you had in the world. Do pray
tell us what has made you so gloomy for so many days.”

Timothy sighed deeply, and a crimson flush suffused the cheek of Nanny.
Mr. Brigs turned up his collar, and ran his fingers through his gray
locks, and looked very hard at Mr. Dobbs. Solomon looked very hard at
his father; and Mrs. Brigs looked at every one in the room alternately.

“Come,” said Mr. Briggs—“Come, Mr. Dobbs, let’s hear what’s the matter.
Remember, young man, you are among friends; and if I can do any thing
for you—why, I’ll do it. Come, now, let out. Don’t kill yourself for no
trifle, young man.”

“I feel much obliged to you,” replied Timothy, “and will ask but one
favor. I cannot now tell you what ails me; but there is something in
this house which gives me great anxiety. I have long wished to make the
inquiry, but had not the courage. Tell me, then, what is the meaning of
that picture which hangs before me?”

“Zooks!” cried Mr. Brigs, “and is it the picture that has caused all
your bad feelings, Mr. Dobbs?”

“It is,” returned the schoolmaster; “and I wish to know what it means!”

The surprise of Mr. Brigs and Solomon may be better imagined than
described. The old gentleman drew out his red silk handkerchief and
rubbed his eyes, stuffed it into his pocket again, and stared with all
his might right into the schoolmaster’s face. Solomon stared also; and
laying down the book he was reading, prepared himself to hear something
strange. Mrs. Brigs and her daughter were before partially acquainted
with the cause of Timothy’s disease—at least, they knew that it sprung
from the oil painting in question. All was now deep interest, awaiting
the development of some wonderful discovery.

“Ah!” said Mrs. Brigs, “it’s a solemn thing that! It used to make me
sick to look at it; but it’s a long time since it was hung up there, and
I’ve got used to it. Still it sticks deep into my heart—it does! It
tells a sad story—but you shall hear it, Mr. Dobbs!” And Mrs. Brigs
began.

I will not give the reader the story in the very words in which Mrs.
Brigs gave it to Timothy; because that is impossible: for she paused
more than once to wipe away the big tears, and to sob; and was obliged
to commence afresh as many as three times before she satisfied herself
that she was in the right path, and had begun at the beginning. But, as
I said, she began, and the following is the substance of the narrative:


                       THE STORY OF THE PICTURE.

John Bloomfield, a merchant of London, was the father of two children,
to wit: Arthur Bloomfield and Polly Bloomfield, now Polly Brigs, wife of
Allen Brigs. He came to this country about two years anterior to the
commencement of the Revolution, and settled on a handsome country-seat,
near the place where now stands our village. Mrs. Bloomfield died during
the passage across the Atlantic; so John Bloomfield was a widower.

At the time of his migration Arthur was twenty and Polly sixteen years
of age. The latter was shortly afterward married to Mr. Brigs; and the
widowed father dying, Arthur determined to sail for the West Indies, for
the purpose of trading on the capital inherited from his father, which
amounted to some five hundred pounds sterling.

Within one year after he left America, he heard that the long expected
conflict between the two nations had begun, and being fired with a love
of liberty, he returned home to join the army of Washington, to aid in
repelling the invaders from the American soil. He brought with him a
young and lovely wife, who, shortly subsequent to his return, gave joy
to his heart by the birth of a son.

The sister of young Mrs. Bloomfield, a still more lovely girl,
accompanied her brother-in-law hither; and so beautiful was she, that
many gallant knights paid homage at her shrine. Alice was
modest—pleasing—fascinating—and none saw her but to love.

Arthur fitted up the late domain of his deceased father; and leaving his
family, soon after the birth of his son, under the supervision of his
wife’s sister, prepared himself for a season of warfare.

Mr. Brigs was settled where he now resides, but his was then the only
tenement in existence there: so Mr. Brigs may be considered as the
founder of the village. With the property obtained by marriage he
purchased the soil on which he built, together with such implements of
husbandry as present wants required. The distance of two miles
intervened between the two families—consequently, they enjoyed the
intercourse of neighbors, though it was not very frequent that they
interchanged visits. They were, however, neighbors, and Mrs. Brigs
ministered, as much as in her lay, to the wants of Mrs. Bloomfield
during her confinement.

                 *        *        *        *        *

The struggle of death was drawing to a close. Arthur Bloomfield had
returned to his family, and was happy—happy because his life had been
shielded amid the strifes of war—happy because health was again the
property of Mrs. Bloomfield—happy _because he was a father_!

One calm evening in spring, when a thousand blushing flowers

        “Distilled sweet fragrance through the air,”

and when all nature reflected the smiles of God’s benevolence, Arthur
Bloomfield was seated with his family in the shady alcove, recounting
the dangers to which he had been exposed, and from which Providence had
rescued him.

“Come,” said he, “let us bow ourselves before God, where we are, and
return him thanks that we are all again together.” And they fell upon
their knees on the green grass, while the father breathed forth his
gratitude to his Maker, in a slow, touching, solemn prayer. Tears stood
in the eyes of Alice, but she wiped them away with her soft hand, and
the mother presented her infant boy before the throne of Heaven, for a
blessing before she arose.

A sudden report of fire-arms threw a shock on the frames of the two
females, and caused a deadly paleness to overspread the countenance of
Arthur.

“Mercy!” shrieked Mrs. Bloomfield, clinging to her husband. “What can it
be?”

“Be composed, dear,” returned the man; “this arm shall defend you!” And
taking the child in his arms, he led the way quickly to the house,
where, securing themselves within doors, they awaited the final issue.
Mr. Bloomfield armed himself with a sword, and planted his stand at the
open window, where he could overlook the foreground, and detect
approaching danger.

The moon shone brightly, lighting up the landscape with her mellow
beams, and shedding rays of grandeur on the world. There he stood, the
only earthly protector of his wife and son and sister-in-law, hardly
daring to hope success, in the event of an attack from a nightly
assassin; while the fear-stricken females breathed heavily and
tremulously near his back.

                 *        *        *        *        *

That night of blood and death passed away, and the first beams of the
morning sun penetrated the dismal room where lay the bleeding bodies of
three mortal beings—a husband—a wife—and youthful maiden!—The infant
son was not there: the murderers had borne him away, and no traces of
them could ever be found!

                 *        *        *        *        *

When the spring flowers again sent forth their fragrance, and the
twittering birds began to build their nests, and when the ice and snow
of winter had melted, and bud and blossom made the forest green; and the
winds blew softly and pleasantly; and when every thing told that the
cold season was gone, and sweet spring had come, busy preparations were
going on throughout all the village for a wedding. Every little house,
and tree, and fence had been newly whitewashed. The church steeple
looked whiter than when first built, and every face beamed with a
brighter smile, and every cheek glowed with purer health than ever. And
whose wedding was it? Rumor abroad said it was one Mr. Dobbs, a
schoolmaster, who was about to espouse the pretty Miss Brigs. But all
the villagers _knew_ that the parties to be joined in wedlock were Mr.
Timothy Bloomfield (formerly Dobbs) and his sweet cousin, Miss Nanny
Brigs, daughter of Allen Brigs, Esq. Miss Betty Lachevers, on hearing
the degree of relationship between the “itinerant pedagogue” and Miss
Nanny, had become perfectly reconciled to everybody, and to Miss Nanny
in particular, and the day previous to the wedding it was generally
understood that Miss Betty Lachevers was to be “chief cook and
bottle-washer.”

The morning of the 15th of May, seventeen hundred and—no matter
what—was clear and beautiful. The church-bell began to ring, and the
villagers began to pour forth by two-and-two, dressed in their best, and
each bearing a bouquet of richest flowers. They all proceeded to the
house of God, where before earth and heaven, the pious minister united
two pious hearts, between which there existed an attachment “sweeter
than life and stronger than death.”

“Zooks!” said old Brigs, on this happy occasion, “I always thought well
of the boy, but I’ll eat my hat if ever I thought he _was_ my nephew,
and _was to be_ my son. Well! well! well!” And Mr. Brigs looked as
pleasing as he knew how. Mrs. Brigs looked pleasing too. Solomon looked
saucy at his sister, and she blushed and looked saucy at Solomon.
Timothy felt as happy as ever man felt: and all was joy and life and
gayety.

A few weeks more, and a petition was presented to the Legislature of one
of the New England States, signed by one hundred and fifty inhabitants
of the village, praying for an act incorporating the “Classical Seminary
of S.” and within a few more weeks the “Classical Seminary of S.” was
filled with pupils; and Mr. Brigs _lived_ to see his prophecy fulfilled;
and _died_ to be mourned by all who had ever known him.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                               SPEAK OUT.


                           BY S. D. ANDERSON.


    Men who battle for the right,
    ’Mid the darkness of the night,
    Looking ever for the light—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Rulers at the helm of state,
    Seek ye for the narrow gate,
    Through which pass the truly great?—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Ye who preach, and ye who pray,
    Smother not in mist and spray
    Thoughts that straggle for the day—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Dreamer, up! strike, for the hour
    Brings the man, as does the shower
    From the budding bring the flower—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Young men, linger not behind,
    With the dead in will and mind,
    Let the blind be ever blind—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Teachers, ye who plant the seed,
    Nurse it in its hour of need,
    With the sunlight of thy deed—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Old men, fathers, would ye see
    Footprints of the Deity
    Round the homes of infancy?—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Searchers after truth and right,
    From the vessel’s topmost height
    See ye glimpses pure and bright—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Poet, if thy mission be
    To uplift humanity,
    Let the world thy spirit see—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Brother, bend ye at a shrine,
    Differing far from me and mine,
    If ye think that light divine—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Stranger, with thy little band,
    From a distant father-land,
    Yearn’st thou for a kindly hand?—
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

    Men, of every creed and clime,
    Hear ye not the tones sublime
    Swelling on the march of Time?
                Speak out!
    Fear ye nothing but the wrong.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                      AN ADVENTURE OF JASPER C——:


                        OR HOW TO SELL A CLOCK.

                           (FOUNDED ON FACT.)


“Madam, can I sell you a clock to-day?” inquired a pedler, as he was met
at the door by the woman of the house at which he had stopped.

“No,” replied the woman, civilly, yet decidedly, “we want no such
article.”

“I have several fine clocks, madam,” said the pedler.

“Very likely,” said the woman, “but we want none”—at the same time
retreating a few paces from the door.

“May I ask,” inquired the pedler, advancing within the door a little,
but cautiously and civilly, as the woman retreated—“may I ask, madam,
whether you have a clock?”

The woman cast I will not say an indignant look at the clock-man—but a
look certainly not kind; at the same time saying with some spirit—“we
want none of your clocks, sir.”

The pedler took a seat.

The scene which we have thus briefly described occurred, some years
since, in the “Old Dominion;” but in what particular section we are not
at liberty to say. The house at which it occurred was a well-looking
habitation; old, indeed, but kept in clever repair. It was owned and
occupied by a farmer of some consideration in those parts, but singular
and very set in his way. Like some others, in other quarters, he had
imbibed strong antipathies against Yankeedom and all its inhabitants. He
fairly hated the sight of a pedler; and, although disposed to treat his
species with civility, he had not at all times been so fortunate as to
do so. In several instances, indeed, he had dismissed with some severity
these itinerant merchants, who had offered their commodities for sale
within his precincts. Even his dog seemed to know when one drove up, and
snarled and growled with more than ordinary spirit, to the evident
satisfaction of the master. As to purchasing an article of any of the
detestable fraternity—that he would never do—no not he, whatever were
his necessities. And he was true to his word. For more than once, it had
happened that articles had been offered just at a time when he needed
them, and which could not be obtained in the retired situation in which
he lived—but he would not even look at them. The corn might remain
unhoed, and the house never be swept, before he would purchase a hoe or
a broom of a pedler.

The sentiments of Mr. M——, moreover, had obtained no small notoriety
among the pedling fraternity. They all understood the matter—those we
mean who conducted this sort of trade in those parts; and although
several, prompted by a more than ordinary share of confidence in their
selling powers, had made a visit to the place, determined not to leave
the game

        Till they had run it down,

they had all to a man been foiled. The Virginia farmer was proof against
their strategy. In general, he was civil—but he could be stormy and
tempestuous, especially if urged by a traveling merchant to purchase,
when he had peremptorily refused. And so set had he become, that on more
occasions than one, he had urged his wife never, in his absence, to
purchase any article, especially not a clock. I am not certain that in
terms he had forbidden her. But she knew his wishes; and being a good
woman, she intended to act accordingly.

The day we are speaking of Mr. M—— had gone to a neighboring town, a
few miles distant, to transact some business; expecting, however, to
return the same evening.

Shortly after his departure, which was early, the pedler of whom we have
already made mention drove up, with the hope of disposing of a clock.
Whether he was apprised of the absence of the lord of the manor has not
transpired; but he was not ignorant of the task before him. He had
received ample information from several of the profession of the unlucky
star that presided, when they made the experiment; and, moreover, they
had predicted his similar ill success.

“Never mind,” said he—“I’ll try my hand, and if Jasper C. fails it will
be the very first time.”

And Jasper C. was in truth no ordinary specimen of a Yankee. Whether
from New Hampshire, Massachusetts, or Vermont, he scarcely knew himself,
as in all those States his parents had lived—but in the limits of which
one they happened to be, at the precise time he first opened his eyes on
this mundane sphere, he never could quite ascertain. He had all the tact
and shrewdness of the Codfish State, and all the hardness and
impenetrability of the Granite State—and I may add, all the
determination of a Green Mountain boy. If there was only a nook or angle
where these States could unite, that would be the precise spot—the very
sharpest point I mean—where Jasper C. had his beginning. But however
these matters may be, he was a Yankee—and one of the “straightest
sect”—a keen, sharp-sighted, ready-witted man, of some two or three and
twenty. He was a great tactician at selling—no matter what was the
article or commodity, he could always sell; and he delighted in nothing
more than to follow hard upon a brother pedler, and to compare notes
with him at the end of their common tour. Generally, Jasper could show
more dollars taken in a given time than any brother pedler who traveled
in the “Old Dominion.” He had some confidence, therefore, and he had a
right to it. And, besides, his personal appearance was in his favor; but
what was of more consequence, he was well-mannered. He was seldom put
off his guard, and seldom betrayed into language which he had occasion
to recall.

Such was Jasper C——, the pedler, who made his appearance at the house
of Mr. M——, at the time and under the circumstances already named.

He had made known his errand, and had received a denial. Most pedlers
would have retired. _He_ took a seat. There was a seeming rudeness in so
doing, especially as the woman had given no such invitation; but the
manner of his doing it divested it of all impropriety. It was taken
hesitatingly and with an appearance of weariness; and still more in his
favor, he did that which is not always done by pedlers, he civilly
removed his hat.

Minutes passed—or they seemed minutes to the pedler—during which he
sat in silence pondering upon the course most likely to ensure
success—the woman, meanwhile, employing herself in brushing the hearth,
adjusting the chairs, with other operations indicated by that very
expressive household term—“putting things to rights.” At length Jasper
C—— ventured to say, “Madam, with your leave, I’ll show you one of my
clocks.”

“You may show as many as you please,” said the woman, “but we want
none—havn’t I already told you?”

She had, indeed, so told him; but, nevertheless, the pedler had done
better than he feared. He had gained one point, and what his experience
had taught him was an important point—he had permission to show his
clocks. In a short time, therefore, he was again entering the door,
bearing in his hands a handsome-looking clock—brass wheels, mahogany
case, gilded at various points, and withal a pretty landscape, painted
on a glass in front, below the face. In short, it was a fair specimen of
Jerome’s best Bristol made. Fortunately—so the pedler thought—the
mantle happened to be unoccupied, and there, in the centre, the clock
was duly installed. It was wound up, and soon began its duty—click,
click, click.

The pedler resumed his seat.

I said he had gained something. So he thought; but despite of all that
he had done, the woman seemed as unmoved as a marble statue—she took
not the slightest notice of him, or his clock. This was strange. The
pedler thought so. He had encountered adverse circumstances before—had
doubled many a point of difficulty and perplexity, and forewarned and
forearmed had expected to meet on this occasion, perhaps refusal; but he
didn’t well know how to manage such sheer indifference. He would have
tasked his wits—and he did task them; but somehow they seemed to
forsake him at the precise moment, when he singularly needed their
assistance. Moreover, in the very midst of his perplexity, the woman,
who had taken a seat with her back turned toward him and his clock—a
position which, under ordinary circumstances she would have avoided as a
breach of civility—rose of a sudden, and taking some needle-work which
she had in her hand, wended her way through an adjoining door into some
other part of the house. It seemed as if she intended to carry her plan
and purpose of marked indifference to the _ne plus ultra_; and the
pedler would have given up all hope of success but for one
circumstance—quite a trivial one—and yet it left a hook to hang a hope
on. As the door closed, the pedler noticed that the woman more than half
turned round, and did—he was quite sure of it—she did cast a momentary
glance at the clock. And that look was voluntary. It cost her effort—it
betrayed curiosity—the pedler didn’t quite despair.

But his hopes were ere long again on the ebb. The woman seemed to have
no disposition to return; at least she didn’t make her appearance; and
with a good deal of reason the pedler thought that she did not intend to
return. Whether this was her resolution I cannot say—quite probably she
supposed that he had departed. Be this, however, as it may, the pedler
was giving up, and had actually risen, and was in progress toward the
clock, with a view to deport it once more to his wagon, when the door
creaked, and the woman again entered.

She seemed inclined to pause—and, perhaps, did pause—but, what was
more to the pedler’s purpose, he fancied that she was about to hazard
some remark—he hoped a commendation of the clock—at least a word as to
its good appearance. But he mistook. She did, indeed, speak—a word or
two only, however; but for the life of him, the pedler couldn’t decide
whether the drift was for or against him. “I wish Mr. M. was at home,”
said the woman, “he—” she paused.

What was she going to add? The pedler would have given almost the price
of a clock to have had his doubts resolved. “_He_”—did she mean that
her husband could decide for himself? So the pedler wished to believe,
while his better opinion, judging from her manner, was, that she meant
to intimate that her husband would be even more summary—more
indifferent he could not appear—more set and determined was impossible.
But putting the construction upon her words most favorable to his
present interests, he ventured to supply what she had failed to say,
“Yes, indeed,” said he, “if Mr. M. were at home, I dare say he wouldn’t
lose such a bargain as I would give him.”

“_Bargain!_” the pedler had unconsciously used a word of talismanic
power the world over. “Bargain!” that word seemed to arrest the woman’s
attention—and for the first time she raised her eyes and fairly looked
at the clock. And so it happened, that, at this critical moment in the
history of that clock, and in the proceedings of the pedler in relation
to a sale of it, it struck one, two, three, up to eleven. Its tones were
soft, musical, attractive. It ceased—and for a moment there was
silence, but it was soon interrupted by the woman’s adding, “It
certainly strikes prettily!”

The ecstasy of the pedler was near being betrayed; but it was for his
interest to conceal his pleasure, and so rising, he moved toward the
clock, saying, “Its striking _is_ good—better, I think myself, than is
common;” at the same time opening the door and pulling the striking
wire, upon which its musical tones filled the room.

“It does sound well,” said the woman.

“Good!” whispered the pedler to himself.

“Havn’t there recently been some improvements in clock-making?” asked
the woman.

“Better and better,” thought the pedler—“Madam,” said he, rousing from
his transient reverie, and responding to her question, “you asked me
about improvements? O yes, divers improvements—clocks are made
now-a-days in great perfection, and very cheap—but—I was about making
a proposition in reference to that clock—” but he was cut short in the
very sentence—

“I can save you all trouble of that sort,” said the woman, “I may take
none of your clocks.”

“There again,” thought the pedler, “all aback!” and now, how to retrieve
lost ground, he was quite at a loss. But a second thought came to his
aid. The language of the woman was peculiar—“I _may_ take none.”

“Madam!” the pedler resumed, and with some little more assurance, “I was
going to put this clock to you on such terms as that _you_ may, or any
other woman in the wide world might take it.”

The woman listened. She raised her hand to her forehead—she
hesitated—she seemed inclined to ask a question, and at length she did
inquire—

“How do you sell your clocks?”

Had the pedler ventured to raise his eyes, they would have resembled
stars of the first magnitude; but he was too politic to betray his sense
of the vantage he was gaining, and therefore rather coolly remarked,
“You seem so reluctant, madam, to purchase a clock, that I’m at a loss
how to reply. But if you will take one, I’ll put it pretty much at your
own price.”

“You will?” said she, her countenance relaxing into a sort of smile,
mingled with a spice of incredulity. “That’s not a common way with you
pedlers.”

“O no,” said he, “we live by our trade, and must make a trifle at least
now and then; but we must sell, if we don’t make much.”

While the pedler was thus remarking, the woman had approached near the
clock, and for the purpose, it would seem, of examining it—the pedler
hoped with reference to a purchase. And by way of helping on this
decision, he opened the clock—displayed its machinery—and cautiously
recommended it, by saying, “it’s a handsome piece of furniture, you
see—useful—and, with your leave, it occupies just the place for it.”

“It looks well,” rejoined the woman, “but—” she paused, “I—” she
began, and again stopped. At length, however, she added, “I may not
purchase it.”

She had laid a more than ordinary emphasis, perhaps unconsciously, on
the word _purchase_. “What!” thought the pedler, “does she expect me to
_give_ her a clock?” No, he could not give the clock. That would deprive
him of an anticipated and now much desired triumph. But matters now
stood in such a position as to demand prompt and decisive action. The
pedler, therefore, met the emergency like a tactician. “Madam,” said he,
“I ask no money for the clock. I am willing to take such articles in
payment as you have to spare, and at your own price.”

The woman fairly stared. The matter wore a new phase.

“I mean just as I say, madam,” said the pedler, observing her apparent
surprise. “Just what you have to spare, and at your own price.”

“But what do you ask for the clock?”

“Fifteen dollars—the small sum of fifteen dollars.”

The woman took a seat. For a few minutes she seemed to be abstracted and
lost. But at length returning to the subject, she said, “On the terms
you propose, I will take the clock.”

That was the decision which the pedler had been looking for with all
imaginable desire, and now no time was to be lost—and none, indeed, was
lost.

“Follow me,” said the woman, rising and leading the way to an outer
room, where was standing a cask with about a bushel of flaxseed, which
she said had been there time out of mind. Her husband had often wished
it away, and now the pedler might take it.

“All right,” said the pedler, “and at what price?”

“Three dollars,” replied the woman—it was double the price of clean
fresh seed.

“Agreed,” said the pedler, his mind running over the loss he must
sustain on this basis; but loss or no loss, he was glad to sell a clock.

“What next, madam?” inquired the pedler.

“Well,” said the woman, beginning fairly to exult at the good bargain
she was making, and even luxuriating in the thought, as how her husband
would himself be pleased at her skill in bargain-making, “we’ve got a
calf you may take.”

“A what?” asked the pedler, a cold shudder following hard on the
annunciation.

“A calf, sir,” repeated the woman, “you said you would take any thing we
had to spare.”

“Right, right,” said the pedler, recovering himself as well as he could,
“a calf—O yes, all the same, that is, nothing amiss by way of trade in
this world; turn it to account, I dare say.”

By this time the woman had conducted our hero to a small pen, with a
southern exposure, adjoining the barn, and there lay a—skeleton!

“This is the calf,” said the woman.

The pedler started back involuntarily; he bit his lips, and for a moment
was on the point of demurring. What on earth was such a sickly-looking
creature worth? What could he do with it? How could he carry it? These,
and half a score of kindred questions flitted across his mind. The
pedler was perplexed; he was out-generaled; but re-installing his waning
confidence with the thought, that as a dernier resort he could deposit
the sorry-looking brute under some hedge by the wayside, like a veteran
soldier in the “battles of life,” he marched up to the emergency, and
with commendable good humor, said,

“Yes, yes—a calf, truly—but is it alive?” at the same time half
spurning it with his foot. “Yes, and alive ’tis, surely. I thought it
was dead; here, you young ox, rouse up.”

The calf yawned.

“Well, it does breathe, upon my soul,” said the pedler; “yonder old cart
can’t yawn.”

“Indeed,” said the woman, her countenance relaxing into a veritable
smile, “indeed, I thought myself, at the instant, that the creature was
dead. It has been ailing for more than a week, and my husband said only
yesterday, that he believed it would die; and he didn’t much care how
soon it did die. It looks a little better, I think.”

Better! the pedler could have cracked a marble. But there was no
escaping from his dilemma. So with as good a grace as was possible, he
inquired, “What price do you put upon the calf?”

“Only ten dollars,” replied the woman.

The pedler started. “Ten dollars!” he fairly exclaimed with surprise.
“Ten dollars! who ever heard of such a price for a calf just gasping.”

“You are committed,” dryly observed the woman.

“I see I am—committed—out-generaled, madam.”

“Isn’t it fair?” asked the woman.

“Fair!” repealed the pedler, “fair as the day itself; right—all right;
ten dollars—never mind, turn it to account, I dare say.”

This half-way controversy about the calf was thus summarily settled, and
a few other matters added, the clock was paid for. But the pedler did
not feel to boast, as they say. He was vanquished, and yet the victor.
He had made a _bona fide_ sale of a clock where all hitherto had failed;
and though for the present he couldn’t show the shiners for his bargain,
he hoped in some way to bring up arrearages, and return to tell a fair
story to his compeers.

The blood freshened his cheeks a good deal more than usual, it must be
confessed, as he helped the helpless “young ox” to mount. It was quite a
lug, as they say; and, to tell the truth, he was right glad when his
wagon, with its added contents of dying stock, and dead stock, was
fairly outside of the yard in the public highway.

On emerging from the premises of farmer M. he turned south toward V——n
Court House, situated some few miles distant. He had now time to lay his
plans. In the interval there were few dwellings, and even if there had
been, he was in no mood for any new adventure just in that region. As we
have already intimated, however, the pedler was a man of large
experience; and more than this, he had profited by it—he had acquired
tact—he was well fitted to extricate himself from difficulty, and that
of the most perplexing kind.

From an occasional inquiry of a passing traveler, he ascertained that
the court was in session at V——n Court House; and his plan of
operations was predicated upon this welcome intelligence. He thought
that if it proved so, he might make a demonstration to some profit.

On reaching the ample green, on which the Court House stood, he was
satisfied that the court was in session. Accordingly, he drew up at some
little distance from the front door, unhitched his horses, and made
ready. Shortly after, the court adjourned. The throng, in goodly
numbers, issued from the building; and it so happened that they were in
great good humor—a cause having just been decided the right way to
please the populace; and of this sort of people there was an abundance,
with a commendable sprinkling of a somewhat higher grade. At this
critical moment the pedler stepped upon his cart, and in quite a civil
way, begged to announce to the gentlemen, that he had some few articles
on sale, which he would be happy to show them.

The crowd gathered round, and the inquiry rose thicker and faster, “What
you got?” “What you got?”

Responding to the already clamorous demand, the pedler, with a calm and
composed front, said that if the gentlemen pleased, he would take the
liberty to exhibit a specimen of _flaxseed_. He had paid a large price
for it, and not having a great quantity, he would sell only a spoonful
of it to an individual. In this way he could give them all a chance; but
mark it, gentlemen, if you please, said he, “I sell only one spoonful to
an individual; one spoonful—not a thimbleful more.”

“Price?” inquired a farmer, who thought much of choice seeds.

“One dollar, gentlemen, per spoonful,” said the pedler. “I know it’s
high—but _such_ flaxseed, gentlemen, you don’t see every day.”

“A dollar for a spoonful of flaxseed!” exclaimed a man—one of the old
settlers, with a long pendent queue to his back—“I have been a long
time in these parts, but I never heard such a price for a spoonful of
flaxseed.”

“A fair price, I dare say,” said a man standing by, “a fair price, if
it’s the genuine—the genuine—there, now, I can’t think of the
kind—it’s the new sort. I’d give five dollars, if I couldn’t get a
spoonful without. Only for seed, sir—for seed.”

“Pray, Mr. Pedler,” said another, “is this seed imported?”

“Why I rather think it was. I _im_ported it.”

“From what country did it come?” asked another.

“Well, that’s more than I can say, whether from Flanders, or Ireland, or
New Holland.”

But these names were enough; and as the last seemed to linger longest on
some one’s mind, he immediately exclaimed, “New Holland! yes, I dare
say—a grand country for flax,” and presently the multitude had improved
upon these hints—in part facts, and in part surmises—and round it
went, that there was flaxseed of a choice kind, just in from New
Holland; and one man, who seemed to know something of geography, and
whose logic was about equal to what he knew of the face of the earth,
declared that as it had come some thousands of miles, it was,
_therefore_, probably a very long or tall kind.

“Gentlemen!” said the pedler, who had watched the increasing enthusiasm
with the most solid satisfaction, and who thought it quite time to make
a strike, “gentlemen, one dollar per spoonful for this flaxseed—your
only chance, don’t expect ever to offer flaxseed here again; last
chance, gentlemen—who’ll—”

He was cut short by the advance of a clever, and even staid looking man,
who said, “I’ll take a spoonful.”

“And I”—“and I”—“and I,” said half a dozen voices all together.

“One at a time, gentlemen,” said the pedler, “serve you all, and just as
fast as I can—the sooner I get through the better.”

And so he went on, parceling out the flaxseed, and pocketing the
dollars, till at last he had the pleasure—and a profound pleasure it
was—to stow away in his money-wallet the 75th dollar for the 75th
spoonful of flaxseed taken from an old cask in the out-room of Mr. M.,
in the “Old Dominion,” in part pay for a clock, but which some of the
purchasers would have it had come direct from New Holland.

“Seventy-five dollars for the flaxseed,” said the pedler, “seventy-five
dollars—seventy-five—that will do.”

And now the pedler’s voice was again heard, and on a somewhat higher
key. “Gentlemen,” said he, “I’ve a still more remarkable article to
dispose of—only one, and only one can have it; and the question is, who
will be the fortunate purchaser. Gentle—men, this _calf_ is for sale.”

The welkin rung. “A calf for sale!” said half a dozen. “Come, walk
up—who’ll buy? Who wants a calf?”

“You’d better sell yourself,” said a roughish-looking stripling,
addressing the pedler.

“Quite likely, my man,” responded the pedler. “I lately felt a good deal
more like a calf than I do just now. But I’ll sell the calf first, and
then think about selling myself. This calf for sale. Who bids?”

“Price?” said one.

“Twenty-five dollars,” replied the pedler.

“What breed?” asked another.

“Well, you all see, as for that matter, that he’s _short horns_.”

“Very plain matter of fact, that,” said a good-natured, jolly sort of a
fellow. “Is he Durham, or what is he?”

“That’s more than I know—he’s _short horns_, but whether Durham or
Dedham—how can I tell?”

“Durham!” exclaimed a prompt, rosy-cheeked fellow, stepping up; “why,
you simpleton, don’t you know the value of the creature you are
selling—even a bigger simpleton might see with half an eye that he’s
Durham; look at his white spots—he’s handsome as a picture.”

“Handsome!” retorted another, “I wonder where you see beauty.”

“Well,” said another, “never mind for beauty—what’s his name, Mr.
Pedler?”

“Well,” said the pedler, “I don’t know exactly what to call him. I guess
we’ll call him Dromeo.”

“Romeo, you fool,” said a voice in the crowd.

“Oh, yes, what a mistake—funny enough,” said the pedler. “Romeo,
gentlemen, Romeo—who’ll bid?”

And now, as in case of the flaxseed, the praises of Romeo went the
rounds, till there was even a controversy who should have him.

Suffice it to say, a square-built man was the purchaser. The money was
paid, even before Romeo was let down on to terra firma. But that
operation was now gone through with, and the first result was that the
calf fell like a flounder.

“O, aint you ashamed of yourself, Romeo,” said the pedler; “come, stand
up in the presence of these gentlemen.”

Romeo, however, couldn’t find his legs, as they say; and the pedler had
to explain and apologize for his want of manners. “He had been a little
ailing,” he believed, “but the person of whom I purchased him, said he
looked better.”

“No wonder if he does ail a little,” said a man who was helping him to
stand up, “it’s a long voyage he’s come, and cattles are quite likely to
get sick on a voyage.”

“That, indeed,” said another, “he looks like as if he’d been very
sea-sick—I dare say he was.”

“He needs something to eat,” said the pedler, “it’s a good while that
he’s been fasting.”

“Well,” said the purchaser, with some assurance, and well satisfied with
his bargain, “plenty of milk hard by—come, boys, give him a lift into
the wagon, and I’ll import him a little further.”

Accordingly, some half a dozen hands were soon occupied in raising Romeo
into the farmer’s wagon.

Meanwhile, the pedler rolled up the bills, and safely deposited them in
his pocket-book, which, on returning to its usual place, he said, “One
hundred dollars! one hundred dollars for a clock!—a clock sold to Mr.
M., of ——! One hundred dollars—that will do!”

No time was now lost by the pedler in re-hitching his horses, which
done, he left for head-quarters, there to tell and exult over the
success of his experiment in selling a clock. The multitude, which had
been some time thinning, now left the Court House and its precincts to
their solitude.

                 *        *        *        *        *

Our story summons us once more, but briefly, to the farm-house of Mr. M.

At about half past seven that same evening, the farmer having returned,
was quietly seated with his wife at the supper-table. He seemed, though
wearied, in excellent spirits. Several circumstances had occurred during
the day to put him in good humor. And for some reason his wife looked,
he thought, more than ordinarily interesting; she was dressed with more
taste. The room was neat and tidy; the light shone more brilliantly, and
the table had a better bill of fare; in short, Mrs. M. had exerted
herself to give her husband as kind and welcome a reception as she well
could. And she had evidently succeeded. He seemed pleased, while she
herself was unusually cheerful and sociable.

She had just turned out a third or fourth cup of tea for Mr. M., and was
in the very act of handing it to him across the table, when from an
adjoining room was heard the clock striking one, two, three, four.

Mr. M. had taken the cup, but it fell as suddenly as if at that instant
a paralysis had seized his arm—the cup broke, and the tea flooded the
table; at the same time the glance of a kindled eye shot across at his
wife.

“Caroline!” said he, in a sharp and inquisitive tone.

“Husband!” at the same time exclaimed Mrs. M. “My dear husband, will you
hear me?”

“No,” said the exasperated man, “hear what? What is the meaning of all
this? No, I don’t want to hear any explanation. You have violated—”

“My dear husband,” interrupted Mrs. M., “only hear me—one instant—one
brief explanation.”

“None,” said he, rising from his chair. At the same time his wife rose,
and approaching him, gently laid her hand upon his shoulder, and
supplicated his calm and kind attention to her explanation.

“Have you purchased that clock?” he inquired.

“Husband! may be I’ve done wrong,” she replied, “but how can you judge
till you hear?”

Mr. M. was a man of impulse, as the reader will readily perceive—and
yet he was kind in his nature; and when reason was permitted to speak,
he was disposed to listen and judge with candor.

At his wife’s request he resumed his seat. She drew her chair to his
side. She explained. First she spoke of the calf, and of the ten dollars
allowed her for it.

“You recollect, husband,” said she, “that only yesterday you wished it
dead.”

“Ah! that, indeed,” said Mr. M., his choler beginning again to wax hot,
“but I had rather lost twenty calves than patronize one of those
detestable pedlers. You knew my wishes.”

“I did, my husband; and but for the opportunity of getting rid of
articles absolutely valueless to us, I should never have presumed to
have made such a purchase.”

“Well, let that pass,” said the husband, his own good sense confessing
that she got a large price for what he had wished off his premises—only
he didn’t wish to be thought patronizing a pedler.

“You got a large price,” he added.

“Well,” replied Mrs. M., “the clock-man,” she avoided the mention of the
word pedler, “allowed me to name my own price, and I aimed in the whole
to please you.”

“To please me!” said Mr. M., petulantly.

“Not to excite your displeasure rather, I should have said.”

“Well, and what next?”

“You place me in trying circumstances.”

“You placed yourself there,” interrupted her husband.

“Yes, according to your view of the case,” said Mrs M., “and you make me
regret that I could suffer myself to be tempted to take a clock; but I
see no way but to proceed and tell you the whole.”

“Certainly,” said Mr. M.

“Well, then, husband, you recollect that cask of old flaxseed out in—”

“Flaxseed!” he exclaimed, his voice absolutely sounding over the whole
house, at the same time the blood rushing to his face, “flaxseed!—did
you sell that flaxseed? Is it, then, possible?”

“Pray,” said Mrs. M., “what is the meaning of your unwonted excitement?
What have I done to raise this awful storm?”

“Done?” said he, “done? That flaxseed!—was it, then, that?” he paused.
“And pray what did you get for it?”

“There was nearly a bushel of it,” replied Mrs. M., “and I was allowed
three dollars for it.”

“Three dollars a bushel!” he exclaimed. “Yes, it must be that—it must
be.”

The whole truth was now before him. He understood the length and breadth
of the matter. His wife was the dupe of a keen and practiced pedler; but
she was less a dupe than himself. Slowly putting his hand into his
pocket, he took thence a paper, which he handed to his wife, and bid her
open it. She did so; and in it was a spoonful of what was once
_flaxseed_.

Judge her surprise!

“Husband!” said she, “what does this mean?”

“Mean?” said he, “why it means that I am more of a fool than yourself.
You sold a bushel of flaxseed for three dollars, and I paid one dollar
for a spoonful of it. That is what it means.”

“How so?” asked Mrs. M.

The story was soon told. He was one of the seventy-five who had that day
purchased the flaxseed. He had left the ground before the selling was
through, and hence was ignorant as to the fate of the calf. But now the
whole was unraveled. And while husband and wife both experienced some
mortification of feeling, the joke was too good to allow any protracted
disturbance of their composure.

Mrs. M. procured another cup, as her husband declared that the matter of
the clock shouldn’t deprive him of his usual allowance of tea,
especially after a day of such fatigue.

The meal was at length finished; but before that, both had recovered
their equanimity, and even smiled at the strange events of the day. The
pedler didn’t escape some little malediction for the part he had acted;
but Mr. M. declared that a man deserved some credit who could carry his
purposes despite of such obstacles; but after all, he thought his wife
the better salesman, who could dispose of a bushel of old flaxseed for
three dollars, and a calf as good as dead for ten dollars.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                              EFFIE DEANS.


                            [SEE ENGRAVING.]

Among the delightful creations of the fancy of the great “Wizard of the
North,” his story entitled “The Heart of Mid-Lothian” stands
conspicuous, and perhaps maintains a higher degree of popularity than
any other of the numerous productions of his pen. Of course, every
reader is familiar with the narrative, and we think all will be
gratified by an examination of the beautiful picture of the unfortunate
EFFIE DEANS, which graces the present number of our Magazine. It is from
the burin of Mr. T. B. WELCH, and is executed in the most finished style
of that very superior engraver. The point of time chosen by the artist
for the delineation of his subject, is that at which the procurator
Sharpitlaw causes himself to be conveyed to the cell of the miserable
girl, for the purpose of eliciting information respecting the haunts of
Robertson. The great novelist tells us that “the poor girl was seated on
her little flock-bed, plunged in a deep reverie. Some food stood on the
table, of a quality better than is usually supplied to prisoners, but it
was untouched. The person under whose care she was more particularly
placed said, ‘that sometimes she tasted naething from the tae end of the
four and twenty hours to the t’other, except a drink of water.’”

[Illustration: _PAINTED BY S. BENDIXEN._

EFFIE DEANS.

_ENGRAVED BY T. B. WELCH FOR GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE._]

                 *        *        *        *        *



                         WILD-BIRDS OF AMERICA.


                          BY PROFESSOR FROST.


[Illustration]


                THE WHOOPING CRANE. (_Ardea Americana._)

Flocks of this bird are found during the autumn season in the Middle and
Western States, and along the shores of the great lakes. In summer they
resort in countless numbers to their breeding places, in the high
northern latitudes, from which they are again driven at the return of
the arctic winters. These migrations are regular, and extend from the
vast plains of South America to the snows of the Arctic Circle.

While performing these immense journeys, the Cranes pass at such a
height in the air as to be invisible, stopping occasionally at some
favorite resting place in the line of their route. They are frequently
seen at those periods in the marshes and rice plantations of the South,
and in much smaller numbers near Cape May, where they are known by the
name of Storks. At those times they attract much attention, principally
of course from sportsmen; and a small number remain at the Cape all
winter. Here they wander in the mud, searching for worms; or if on the
wing they keep near the shore, sailing from place to place with a low,
heavy flight, and uttering a loud piercing cry, which may be heard two
miles. From this scream, and its occasional modulations, the bird has
received its name. If wounded, the Whooping Crane boldly faces his
pursuers, attacks dog or man, and has been known by one stroke to drive
his bill through the gunner’s hand. It is, however, a difficult bird to
shoot, on account of its shyness and vigilance. When a flock rises from
the ground it ascends spirally to a great height, each member sending
forth the piercing scream, which, uniting with the others, and ringing
through the air, fills the beholder with a feeling approaching to
terror.

The favorite localities of the Whooping Crane are impenetrable swamps,
salt marshes, and small ponds or lakes near the sea. Here it hunts its
prey, passes its social life, feeds and nourishes its young. Their nests
are made of long grass, raised more than a foot above the ground, and
usually hidden among unfrequented swamps. The eggs are two in number, of
a pale blue color, spotted with brown. Thousands are reared every summer
at these favorite haunts, the young setting out in the following season
with the others, for the more genial climate of the South. This bird is
frequently eaten, and is said to be palatable. Its common food is worms,
insects, mice, moles, etc. It is the tallest bird indigenous to the
United States, measuring four feet six inches in length, and when erect
five feet in height. The bill is truly formidable, being six inches
long, an inch and a half thick, straight and extremely sharp. The
general color, excepting that of the head and the primaries, is pure
white, many of the feathers on each side lengthening into graceful
plumes, like those of the ostrich. The legs and thighs are black, thick
and strong. The tail, in common with that of the species, is covered by
a broad flag of plumage, which sets off the gracefulness of this truly
graceful bird to full advantage.

It is supposed on good authority that the species known by naturalists
as the Brown Crane is but the young of this bird. It appears to extend
also across Behring’s Straits and throughout the great part of northern
Asia. It has likewise been confounded with the Canadian Crane, whose
habits are thus described by Major Long: “They fly at a great height,
and wheeling in circles, appear to rest, without effort, on the surface
of an aerial current, by whose eddies they are borne about in an endless
series of revolutions. Each individual describes a large circle in the
air, independently of his associates, and uttering loud, distinct, and
repeated cries. They continue thus to wing their flight upward,
gradually receding from the earth until they become mere specks upon the
sight, and finally altogether disappear, leaving only the discordant
music of their concert to fall faintly on the ear, exploring

        “‘Heavens not its own, and worlds unknown before.’”

The distinction, however, between these two species is now clearly
ascertained.

[Illustration]


                 THE CEDAR BIRD. (_Ampelis Americana._)

This bird is also known by the names of the Crown Bird, and the Cherry
Bird. It abounds in the United States, and is found as far south as
Mexico, and northward to Canada. During the Summer months flocks of
Cedar birds are found in the mountainous tracts of our country, where
they find abundant food in the whortleberries with which, at that
season, the Blue Mountains, the Alleghanies, and the Cumberland abound.
At the approach of autumn they leave these haunts, and descend to more
cultivated, to feed upon the berries of the sour gum and red cedar. The
latter is their favorite food; a small flock is not unfrequently seen on
one small cedar tree; and here they gorge themselves to such an extent
that they may easily be taken by the hand. This voracity does not leave
the bird even in captivity; for instances have been known of a tame or
wounded one gormandizing upon apples or berries, until it choked to
death. They are also fond of grapes, ripe persimmons, and almost every
kind of berry; but the pursuit of insects, which they sometimes indulge
in, appears to originate rather from a love of sport, or of mischief,
than from any preference to that kind of food. During the season of
fruit they are fat, tender, and much esteemed for the table; but they
become almost worthless when obliged to live upon insects.

The Cedar Bird is noted for its graceful figure, the beauty of its
plumage, and for the tuft or crown which adorns the head, and which it
can elevate or depress at pleasure. The feathers are of the texture of
fine silk or down, glossy and beautiful. It has long been confounded by
foreigners with the European Chatterer, but is much smaller than that
bird, possesses marked differences of plumage, and specific differences
of nature. Its usual note is but a feeble lisp, generally uttered while
rising or alighting. When flying they move in parties of fifty or sixty,
crowded closely together, and on reaching a tree alight in the same
compact manner. Of course the sportsman is enabled to do terrible
execution, sometimes destroying half a flock at a single discharge.
Their great enemy is the farmer; and when we take into consideration how
perseveringly they endeavor to harvest his cherry orchards, even to the
last gleaning, in spite, too, of guns and scare-crows, it must be
acknowledged that he has better cause for war against them than in many
instances of supposed feathered aggressions. The Cedar Bird, however,
increases rapidly; and a singular circumstance connected with its habits
is the unusually late time at which it begins to build. This is supposed
to be owing to a scarcity of food in the spring. The nest is not begun
before the second week in June. It is located on a cedar tree, or in
some orchard, usually in a forked branch ten or twelve feet from the
ground. The bottom is composed of coarse dry stalks of grass, and the
whole is lined with very fine threads or blades of the same material.
The eggs are three or four in number, white, with a bluish cast, very
sharp at the point, and blunt at the other end, the whole surface marked
with small round black spots. After being hatched the young are fed for
a while on insects, and afterward on berries. If the nest be attacked
the parent birds utter no cry, but will sometimes make a show of defence
by snapping the bill, elevating the crest, and attack with mimick fury
the object which disturbs them.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                       THE WILLOW BY THE SPRING.


                            BY J. HUNT, JR.


    Near to my old grandfather’s cot,
      A small stream murmurs by;
    And from its bank a spring pours out,
      Whose waters never dry;
    Beside that spring a willow stands—
      A tall and stately tree—
    Oh, would you learn what charms it hath?
      I’ll tell its charms to me;
        The willow by the spring,
          The willow by the spring;
        Oh, may it live and strength receive,
          While Time the moments wing.

    My mother, on her bridal morn,
      Two twigs inserted there;
    And twining them together close,
      United thus the pair;
    She left them to the charge of Fate,
      To flourish or to fade;
    But taking root, they freely grew,
      And gave the spring a shade;
        The willow by the spring,
          The willow by the spring;
        Oh, may it live and strength receive,
          While Time the moments wing.

    How oft have I, when but a child,
      And e’en in later years,
    Sat ’neath that willow’s drooping boughs,
      And bathed its roots in tears;
    Not for a sadness which I felt,
      From pains that pressed my heart;
    But Mem’ry, with her troop of thoughts,
      Bade Feeling’s fountain start;
        The willow by the spring,
          The willow by the spring;
        Oh, may it live and strength receive,
          While Time the moments wing.

    When on the cultured plains of life,
      A wedded pair I see,
    Who, true to each, together cling,
      I think upon that tree;
    There, green in age, it broadly spreads
      Its branches to the sun—
    Distinct, two trunks appear in view,
      And yet, they “twain are one.”
        That willow of my home,
          That willow of my home;
        Oh, may it live and strength receive,
          One hundred years to come.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                            WE ARE CHANGED.


                            BY EDITH BLYTHE.


    We are changed—we are changed—The time was once
      That our hearts were light and free,
    And the song and the laugh rang out in tones
      Of merry, blithesome glee:
    We are changed—we are changed—for grief and care
      Have wrought the work of years,
    And our smiles have fled, and our eyes grown dim
      With burning bitter tears.

    We are changed—for our hearts no longer now
      Can echo the songs of mirth,
    And the sunbeams are few, and the shadows dark,
      That seem to encircle the earth.
    The step has grown slow that was buoyant and light,
      When erst the green forest we ranged;
    Our fair dreams have fled, and hope’s bright star is gone—
      And we feel we are changed—we are changed.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                            EDITOR’S TABLE.


                   THE MEANS OF A MAN’S LASTING FAME.


                         BY JOSEPH R. CHANDLER.


As a general rule, we must look to the earliest years of a man to
ascertain the facts and circumstances which have influenced the conduct
and produced the result of his latest years; just as we ascend to the
sources of a stream, to find what has caused the color and quality of
its water; on looking a little down we find those assisting or
disturbing accidents that divert or direct its current.

But while the quality of a man’s mind may be dependent upon the gifts of
God or the culture of his infancy—while we may trace up from the last
effort of matured greatness to the earliest movement of the nascent
powers, the influence of the first directing causes, and see how
qualities were improved and greatness achieved; while all the colors of
the mind seem to be derived from infancy, and the fame of the youth is
made obviously referable to the culture of the nursery and the fireside
circle, we cannot shut our eyes to the fact that even in later years,
when the tone or the color of the mind becomes fixed, when the qualities
have insured fame and eminence, some unseen, and by the world
unsuspected, cause operates to disturb the onward course, impede the
progress, lessen the influence, and thus diminish the greatness of the
gifted one that has been “the observed of all observers,” as a
projecting rock divides the current at the mouth of a stream, or an
accumulated bar prevents a depth and destroys the usefulness of a river
which has flowed steadily, beautifully and profitably from its source in
the mountain to its entrance into the sea.

And, not to drop the simile, we see some men moving on in constantly
augmenting consequence, swaying public opinion and enlightening public
sentiment, and seeming to bid fair to swallow up in their fame the
credit of all, by making all tributary to them, when suddenly they sink
from observation; drop from the course they have pursued, and are lost
to sight, just as the rivers of Florida flow along with augmented volume
toward the Gulf, as if to gather themselves into a glorious estuary,
when suddenly they sink into the earth, and are lost amid the
subterranean caverns that abound in a country of such peculiar
geological formation, and like

          The Niger escape the keen traveler’s eye,
        By plunging or changing the clime.

We see around us numerous instances of this kind of autumnal failure.
History is full of them. Our country presents cases of remarkable
strength. And as it acquires years and augmented numbers, more will
present themselves, and as the means of observation increase, and
publicity becomes greater, of course attention will be more drawn to the
fact; and perhaps the causes, too, will be better understood, I do not
know that they will be avoided; if we are right in our conjectures as to
their causes, then we fear that they will continue—and while they
continue they will produce like effects.

I am about to speak of the disturbing cause of manhood—the hidden
influences to harm to which he is exposed—something that comes in
manhood to defeat the hopes and expectation of childhood and youth,
something that paralyzes the arm lifted in the harvest field, for which
seed-time had been appropriately used, and vernal showers and summer
suns had done their work of good. I must not, however, be supposed to
intimate that all attention is not due to infancy and childhood, to
insure the man of worth, or that all of goodness and most of greatness
in age are not the consequence of early devotion. We know it is—but we
are not hence released from the necessity of inquiry, what it is that
defeats the labors given to age—what is it that strikes down the man in
his upward march—what is it that suddenly, to the appearance of the
world, but perhaps slowly to the sufferer, withdraws the vital stamina
of his mind, and leaves him powerless, hopeless, _ambitionless_! The
tree that sheds its deciduous leaves in autumn, may have in itself no
powers to renew its foliage in the spring, and if sentient would feel
that the sap which was receding from its branches would never again
flow, to promote its growth and restore its beauty—but the world would
know nothing of the blight until spring had brought out other trees, and
exposed its nakedness and death, then it might concern the arborator to
inquire what had affected that “which promised ere long to be the pride
of the wood and prince among the neighboring trees.” Is man less worthy
of consideration than insensible wood? But man does not regard his kind;
he acknowledges a law for all of nature beside, but for himself and his,
he submits all to chance, and fate becomes the providence of submission.
If with the season a single class of birds omit their advent—or come in
less considerable numbers than was their wont—forthwith the philosopher
peers into nature, compares her laws, and with infinite research comes
to guess at the motive which influenced the motion of the feathered
tribe. “But man dieth and wasteth away.” The immortality upon which he
is seizing fades in his grasp, or his hand becomes palsied—few or none
reach the point at which they aim, and there is no one to ask the reason
of the failure, or to explain the causes which have disappointed the
aspirant of his fame and the world of its advantage.

“Of how much more value are ye than many sparrows!”

I have often in moments of reflection upon the fame and conduct of
particular, distinguished men, felt a great anxiety to know something of
their private life, that I might be able to judge of the cause of the
disappointment which their life’s close had worked for their friends and
admirers. I have put the question to some one who might have more
knowledge than I of the individual to whom I referred.

“Oh, he drinks too much.”

“That is true—anybody can see that. But how does it happen that such a
person should drink too much?”

“The constant demand upon his intellect gave him a habit of stimulating,
and that is a good way toward intoxication.”

“But I do not see in his pursuits that kind of demand for stimuli which
poets are supposed to have? I think that drinking is rather an effect
than a cause.”

Such questions and such answers, with such conclusions, were frequent.
Accident at length led me to a closer knowledge of the circumstances of
one person, whose fame seemed to pale before the effectual fires of some
hidden conflagration.

Blackstone had taken his place at the bar of his native county, and
extended his practice to the various courts of the State, so that he
seemed, in a few years, to have got possession of a position for which
many had given a life time of labor. The amount of his business at the
bar did not hinder him from distinguishing himself in the halls of the
legislature, and his commanding eloquence commended him to the people of
both parties as a representative in Congress, where his career fulfilled
all the expectations of his warmest political friends, and justified the
vote in his favor of his political opponents.

Years passed away, and the habits of this popular and eminent citizen
were less exemplary than the fame of his talents would require, and
while his many friends had to confess a bitter disappointment, he seemed
dissatisfied with himself, and constantly in need of something which no
one seemed able to impart. He lost the high position which he had
reached, and the world wondered at the change; all, of course, censured
the recusant, and blamed him justly, because there was that in his
habits which shocked the temperate. “No man in these days,” it was said
with emphasis, “no man can expect to sustain himself in any public
position who neglects the proprieties of life by indulging in
intemperate use of spirituous liquor.”

Here was a cause for the lapse in the upward course. To drink too much
is to be unable to ascend—we do not mean a play upon a vulgar
designation for inebriety, when we say that he who drinks too much has
in him a too heavy load to take with him to the temple of desirable
fame.

But admitting intemperance as the proximate cause of the change in the
man’s conduct—may we not be allowed to suspect that there was a remote
cause—some less potent influence working the evil, but producing
through the agency of liquor? In other words we did inquire into the
circumstances of Blackstone and found that there was a remote cause, and
we found also what that cause was:

Blackstone’s fine person and commanding talents, gave him the welcome
_entrée_ of the first families of West Virginia: whether these are equal
to the real F. F. V. of the eastern portion of the State, we do not
know, but they were glad to find Blackstone among them. He married a
young woman of good education—we mean of considerable school
learning—and she was beside handsome and agreeable. She admired the
position which Blackstone had achieved—was pleased with the fame of her
husband, and not a little elated at the distinction which his character
and popularity conferred on her. The world all saw that Mrs. B. was
proud of her husband—the world as usual made a mistake. She was proud
of being Blackstone’s wife. The reflected honor was most grateful, and
she enjoyed it. She appreciated the distinction which she possessed,
almost as highly as she did the abundant supply of money which her
husband’s position at the bar enabled him to supply.

But Mrs. Blackstone never thought much about the manner in which the
money was acquired, and never for a moment thought of the ingredients of
her husband’s fame. She knew that Mr. B. was a distinguished lawyer, but
it never occurred to her that the maintenance of his position demanded
as much exertion as did the attainment thereof. She knew by common fame,
by the newspapers, and by other tokens, that her husband was one of the
most distinguished speakers of that speaking portion of the country, and
she knew, because all said, that his speeches in the halls of
legislation or at the courts of justice were not merely verbal
outpourings, they contained deep thought and persuasive arguments, and
constant instruction. But it never occurred to Mrs. B. that these
gigantic works of her husband were the result of efforts; that without
due preparation he would have failed in the midst of his argument, and
that each glorious exposition of the law to the court, each elucidation
of the constitution to the Legislature demanded that its successor
should be as well sustained, should add to his fame for learning and
acumen, and that consequently new study, new labor, new intensity of
application, could alone secure to the gifted speaker the fame which his
antecedent argument had acquired. To her, we say, such an idea never
occurred. She seemed to think, or at least her conduct would warrant the
conclusion that she thought, the eloquence and the learning of her
husband were as little the result of exertions as was his physical
proportion, and that one of his great speeches was as easily made as was
a pedestrian movement from his house to the office. The truth is, she
thought nothing about it.

A friend whose business calls him frequently to the West, tells us that
he was at one time an inmate of Mr. Blackstone’s family for some
weeks—that on one occasion the whole town had been wrapt in admiration
at one of his magnificent addresses in the court-house—it was a speech
which if it had been the only one of any man’s life would have insured
enviable fame. Our informant, roused from the deep absorption which the
speech produced, hastened at its close to the dwelling of Mr. B., that
he might sit and enjoy the rich effect which the language and tone had
produced upon his mind. Mrs. B. was in the parlor, and he informed her
of the unexampled efforts and success of her husband. She merely
remarked that she had heard him speak often before their marriage but
never since.

Of course, a lady was not going to laud her husband; she was modest.

Later in the evening, the visiter was sitting in the library, when Mr.
B. entered that portion of the house. He was exhausted, mentally and
physically. He knew that he had done great things, and he desired, as
all men do, to have his wife share in the pleasure—nay, to double the
pleasure to him by her kind, affectionate, partial commendation of his
labors, and hearty rejoicings at his success.

“It was, Cornelia,” said he, “one of my most fortunate hits, and when I
summed up the testimony and presented the cause of the injured widow,
there was not a dry eye in the court-room; and the gallery was crowded
with ladies. Mrs. Campbell sat in front, listening with the most marked
attention—”

“Did she—what dress did Mrs. Campbell wear?”

“Dress—but——”

It was ever thus. Whatever effort Blackstone made—whatever applause
abroad followed his exertions, there was an entire want of sympathy at
home. Not that Mrs. B. was without high mental powers, not that those
powers lacked cultivation; but she had no knowledge of what a public man
expects of his home, no comprehension of the great fact, that no
out-of-door applause, no huzza of the multitude, no approval of even a
judicious public is complete in its effect upon the recipient, unless
sanctioned and sealed by the council at home—a council the head and
chief of which is the wife, but which includes every member of the
domestic circle. Distinguished men are not candidates alone for
_applause_. They receive the censure, the vituperation, and persecution
sometimes of those whose views they may oppose. Whose good they can no
longer promote—for whom they have done the ninety-nine good acts but
failed in their attempt at the hundredth—and that failure cancels all
obligations for former success; how prospective is public gratitude!

Blackstone of course had his opponents, and when he entered his house,
stung with insults from impeached motives, and felt how faithless had
been those upon whom he had leaned, a word or two of kindness, one
intimation that he could and would survive all such attacks. One gentle,
soothing strain from a wife who knows or ought to know the most
sensitive spot on which the public thong had fallen, and who can apply
the soothing ointment of affection—one cheering word would have lifted
him over the difficulty and made him feel that in himself he had the
material of resistance, and the weapons of final victory. A glass or two
of brandy stiffens the nerves and rallies the mind to its wonted
tone—that application must, of course, be increased in amount whenever
renewed, or the effect will cease—and we need not tell what must be the
consequence of such a resort.

The remedy of wife-like sympathy, domestic soothing, may indeed, like
the latter, need augmentation by frequency of application—but it comes
from a source that is never dried up by use, that increases by drafts
upon it—and produces no injurious effects upon the mind or body made
recipient of its soothing power.

I know now, because I know more than I have above related, that the
errors of Blackstone, his short-coming, the comparative dimness of his
once glowing fame which seemed marked to “shine more and more unto the
perfect day;” his want of perseverance—his new habits of
remissness—his loss of fame—all, all are due to a want of _home_—of
that which makes his house his home—makes home—home.

I speak not here of the thousand instances in which incompatability of
temper forever precludes family enjoyment—where vice, or what is next
to vice, want of domestic proprieties, disturb the peace of home; I cite
no instance of the defeat of a man’s high purpose, and the baffling of
the noble aims which elevated talents and finished education may form—I
quote not shipwrecks like those which may be due to the vulgar mind or
the vicious course of the wife—such causes are usually as obvious as
their effects. The men of more spirit than judgment breaks away from the
destructive cause, and tries to acquire an independence of home. Man is
not independent of home, if he has a place which he calls home, and all
his life, and all his conduct, and all his experience must and will
derive their coloring in no mean degree from that home, however man may
treat its condition or seek to place himself beyond its influence.

The distinguished Mr. Coke of South Carolina, seemed to me in some
considerable intercourse, to have rather a brilliant fancy, but to lack
that severe discipline which goes to make a man truly and permanently
great and popular—yet he seldom failed in producing a considerable
effect on an audience which he addressed, whatever might be the subject,
and nervous as was his system—he rarely evinced on the morning after a
defeat any tokens of irritation or discouragement. His wife made it her
business, and it became her pleasure to be an auditor of his
narrations—to hear his complaints against individuals at the moment of
anger and seem to forget his charges when returning equanimity led him
to speak in a different tone and temper of his vigorous and sometimes
successful antagonist.

He never came from a public exercise of his talents without being
willingly compelled to give an account of the whole matter to his
family, unless it was unpleasant; in that case his wife was the
attentive soothing listener.

The triumph of the forum or the ‘stump’ (pardon the Americanism,) was
doubled in the joy which the narration gave to the family, and the
unpleasant occurrences of such arenas were never referred to in the
family, so that Coke was sure of pleasure at home, whatever may have
been the pleasure abroad—he was sure of delicate sympathy at home
whatever may have been the vexation abroad. His fireside was the seat of
pleasure—his house was his home—his home was a home.

What is the result of all this? The course of Mr. Coke as all know has
been onward and upward—not with the swiftness or the sunlike aim of
Blackstone—but steadily, constantly, and successfully. Charge Mrs.
Blackstone with having impeded the course of her gifted husband, and she
would start with anger at, and abhorrence of the charge. She had never
disgraced him by misconduct, nor hindered him by interference.

Credit Mrs. Coke with having been the cause of her husband’s success,
and she would be not less astonished; she knew nothing of the subjects
of which her husband had acquired fame by speaking; she had consequently
never assisted in his preparation for public display, nor added an idea
to his brief.

The cold negative of Mrs. Blackstone had chilled her husband into
indifference or disgust.

The cheering warmth of Mrs. Coke’s affectionate attention and timely
attendance had inspired her husband with that proper degree of
self-respect which is necessary to self-dependence, and her soothing
sympathies had lulled unfriendly feelings toward others, so that he lost
nothing of acquired popularity by injudicious utterance of irritated
feelings.

It would not be difficult to adduce numerous instances, in divers walks
of life, of the good effect of matrimonial sympathy upon the success of
the husband and the position of the family. Very little can be expected
of a man abroad who lives in a state of constant indifference at
home—who has there no encouragement to efforts, and no gentle soothing
in failure, no inspiriting by the utterance of confidence in his powers,
who gathers no gentle pride by those hearty, warm, open plaudits at the
fireside, which would have shocked his feelings if offered abroad.

The merchant needs it, when his adventure is in imminent danger, or his
losses exceed his expectations. The mechanic requires it when planning
some work from which a kind of fame and a hoped for credit are to flow.

The laborer has as much advantage from the encouraging tone of his
wife’s voice as has any other man, and disappointment has its sting
poisoned or extracted, just as the woman sees proper to meet the evil.

“If a man would be rich he must ask his wife.” This is an old and a true
proverb, and applies as much to the riches of fame and station as to
those of pecuniary estimate. And if a man hopes to rise in life, let him
as a means of ascent carefully weigh the character of her who is to be
his companion—let him investigate closely her habits of sympathizing
with others, and her ability to conform to his situation. Wealth,
beauty, talents, education, are all desirable in woman, all appropriate
to her position, all contribute to her means of true usefulness. But
coldness, selfishness, indifference to the tastes and feelings of
others, and consequent uselessness as a wife, are all quite inconsistent
with those other attractions, and render them worthless—a means of
annoyance rather than a source of pleasure.

Constant affection, household knowledge, unfailing sympathy with the
wishes, views and efforts of the husband, good common sense, are those
jewels of a wife’s inheritance which are infinitely above all others,
though eminently consistent with those usually so highly valued.

Let no female reader think the dignity or the rights of her sex invaded,
nor the wrongs neglected, and start up to declare what a miserable state
a bad husband imposes upon a wife; we are speaking of an independent
evil. We know how much misery is brought into families, and how all good
is banished by the follies and wickedness of the husband. But our
business now is to speak of the errors of the wife—faults of character
which it seems almost impossible to correct in the individual, but which
must be looked to and avoided by those who look to marriage as a means
of happiness and advancement. The person must be avoided: faults of
conduct are more or less easily corrected, as they more or less depend
upon the character, condition, or temper of the individual. But, alas!
when, after repeated monitions, and as repeated failures, people come to
say “it is her way,” then it seems almost impossible to hope for
success.

It appears to us, however, worth while for men, and women too, to look
at the circumstances to which we profess only to have referred. Let them
weigh the value of domestic peace—let them estimate the worth of home
attractions and home pleasures, and let some one sit down and look
calmly and philosophically at the influence of family peace, family
pleasure, family support, upon the character and condition of a man—of
the husband—and then see whether what _we_ have noticed is not worth
the notice of others.

We do not say that the man of learning wants a learned wife, nor that
the statesman needs a political partner. But both need a wife who will
sympathize in their feelings, will try to improve advantages and
mitigate evils, and thus to bring to the house and the fireside the
great sources of man’s happiness and man’s triumphs.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                          REVIEW OF NEW BOOKS.


    _A Second Visit to the United States of North America. By Sir
    Charles Lyell, F. R. S. New York: Harper & Brothers. 2 vols.
    12mo._

Sir Charles Lyell is the exact opposite of those English tourists who
emphasize the little peculiarities of American character, and pass off
their caricatures as national traits. He is a rigid man of science,
without sufficient humor or imagination to seize upon individual
peculiarities, and confines himself altogether to facts and sensible
remarks. He is essentially a moderate man in mind as well as in
disposition, and thoroughly conscientious, good-natured and
unimpassioned. His eye for scenery is that of a man of science, not of a
poet; he observes geology and botany, not mountains and sunny slopes of
green hills; and through the whole book there is not one example of his
mind rising above the dead level of calm observation and classification,
even in the presence of the most beautiful and sublime scenes of nature.
In regard equally to men, institutions, and scenery, he seems incapable
either of admiration or dislike, and from his utter lack of
sensitiveness to any impressions, the reader is made to wonder how he
can be any thing but a bore to himself. His moderation is perfect. He
discusses the copyright question and the question of slavery in a manner
so cool and just as to distinguish him from all other English tourists,
and also from all American chatterers on those word-flooded themes. If
he is thus destitute of glow and enthusiasm, it must be admitted that
these defects have their compensations. His statements are always
reliable. The geological information the volumes contain is of course
beyond cavil, but his observations are almost equally just on the
subjects of religion, education, and the practical working of our
political institutions. He may not convey much information to an
American, but it is but proper to admit that his tolerant and
conscientious representations will be sure to dispel many errors and
prejudices in the minds of his own countrymen. An Englishman is apt to
consider it a duty to believe every thing bad against the United States,
and it is pleasant to think that a man with the social and scientific
position of Sir Charles Lyell has the disposition as well as the power
to present the good side of our society for foreign contemplation.

In the eighth chapter of his first volume, Lyell discusses the Sea
Serpent, and comes to the conclusion that it is a Basking Shark. Since
his book was published the creature has been seen again off Nahaut
Beach, and the shark hypothesis completely overturned. We perceive that
Agassiz believes in the Serpent, and his opinion is almost as
authoritative as Lyell’s reasonings.

An interesting chapter in these volumes is devoted to the reprints of
English books, in the course of which the author gives an account of the
mammoth establishment of the Harpers. In the course of the year 1845 the
publishers sold two millions of volumes. Their success with particular
books seems to have filled Lyell with as much wonder as he is capable of
feeling. They sold 80,000 copies of the Wandering Jew, and 40,000 copies
of Bulwer’s Last of the Barons. Up to April, 1849, they had disposed of
40,000 copies of Macaulay’s History, at prices varying from four dollars
to fifty cents, and they calculated that the publishers of other
editions had sold 20,000, making in all 60,000 copies of one book in
about three months. The circulation of the same work in Great Britain
had been almost unprecedented, considering that the price was thirty-two
shillings, and yet during the same period only 13,000 copies were
disposed of. Since that period the English circulation has risen to
20,000, and we doubt not the American has nearly reached 80,000. Lyell
seems to think, in alluding to these facts, that what the English author
loses in money by an absence of copyright in America, he makes up in
popularity and fame.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _The Liberty of Rome: A History with an Historical Account of
    the Liberty of Ancient Nations. By Samuel Eliot. New York: Geo.
    P. Putnam. 2 vols. 8vo._

This work, though composed of two solid octavos, each numbering five
hundred pages, is still but the beginning of a series. The adventurous
author intends to follow them up with a line of successors, devoting a
brace of volumes to the Liberty of the Early Christian Ages, another to
the Liberty of the Middle Ages, and still another to the Liberty of
Europe since the Reformation. In addition to these, separate works are
to be produced on the Liberty of England and that of America. Few, even
among the giants of one idea, could contemplate such a vision of labor
without despair, but Mr. Eliot has fully made up his mind to undertake
the task; and there seems to be in him a power, possessed by few
scholars, of unflinchingly looking in the face a prospect of dogged
work, which will probably carry him through the business. The present
volumes are able, full of learning, inspired by a genuine love of
liberty and a genuine sense of religion, and are not deficient in
historical sagacity. They reflect great credit on the author’s industry
and ability, and, in many respects, are an addition to historical and to
American literature. It would be foreign to our purpose to attempt an
abstract of his labors, stretching as they do over a vast field of facts
and principles, but it can be confidently asserted of his book, that it
can hardly be read without increasing our knowledge, and inspiring an
admiration of the author’s spirit, and a respect for his learning. If
Mr. Eliot fails in securing the attention of a large class of readers,
it will not be because he has nothing of importance to communicate, but
because he does not exactly understand the best mode of communicating
it. His style is generally languid, oppressed with words brought in to
limit propositions, and the sentences are unconnected by that fusing
spirit which gives directness and movement to narration and
disquisition. These defects are perhaps the more observable, as the
style is ambitious to the extent of suggesting an effort after
correctness, and, with little freshness and energy, is replete with
images seen through an unimaginative haze of words, and implying the
absence rather than the possession of poetical power. The fault of the
work, in short, is the fault of a person unpracticed in composition, and
substituting a heavy rhetoric for a natural style; the merits are of a
kind which the purest and raciest writers might be proud to claim.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _The Penance of Roland, a Romance of the Peine Forte et Dure,
    and Other Poems. By Henry B. Hirst, Author of Endymion, etc.
    Boston: Ticknor, Reed & Fields. 1 vol. 16 mo._

This volume, though it contains nothing equal in classic beauty and
grace to the exquisite poem of Endymion, has striking merits of another
kind, indicating that the author’s genius is versatile, and can roam at
will into many regions of song. The Penance of Roland is a long and
spirited ballad story, giving free play to a variety of strong passions,
and hurrying the reader swiftly along on a rushing stream of musical
verse to the conclusion. The author has united narration and description
in such an artistical manner, as to make his representations of scenery
and moods of mind aid instead of obstructing the story; and he produces
a strict unity of effect, by making every thing serve the dominant idea
of the poem. In this power of grasping a leading idea, of conceiving a
poem, Mr. Hirst is ever pre-eminently successful. This was the great
charm of Endymion, and it is just as observable in the smaller pieces
contained in the present volume as in that longer work. Of the whole
nineteen there is not one which is merely a collection of melodious
lines, embodying certain fancies and imaginations, but each is a short
poem, imaginatively conceived and artistically executed. We have no
space to refer to them individually, but it can be said of them
generally, that they display a profound insight into the mysteries of
melody both in metre and rhythm, and evince great strength and subtilty
of imagination in the embodiment of varying moods of mind. The volume is
a rich addition to the poetical literature of the country.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _History of the National Constituent Assembly. By J. F. Corkran,
    Esq. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo._

The author of this interesting volume was in daily attendance at the
National Assembly for some months, and his book is a record of his
personal observation of men and debates, including a view of the
measures introduced into the Assembly, and the mode in which they were
discussed. The author is an Englishman, and his eye is not always
perfectly accurate in his perception of French character; but he is far
beyond most of his countrymen even in this particular. He gives
tolerably correct views of the different factions which divided the
nation after the Revolution of February—the Red and the Moderate
Republicans, Socialists, Communists, Bonapartists and Monarchists; and
some capital portraits are drawn of Lamartine, Louis Blanc, Cremieux,
Garnier Pages, Arago, Marie, Murrast, Thieré, Barrot, Berryer, Dupin,
Rollin, Cavaignac, Mole, and Marshal Bugeaud. One of the most
interesting portions of the volume we have found to be the account of
Pierre Leroux. Mr. Corkran is evidently ignorant of the fact that Leroux
is one of the profoundest metaphysicians of France, that he not only
demolished the Eclectic system of Cousin, but is himself a man with
positive philosophical ideas, and accordingly he considers him simply as
a political socialist, who fails as a public speaker. Leroux is thus
described: “Beneath a prodigious mass, or mop, of black hair, as wild
and entangled as the brushwood of a virgin forest, slumber a pair of
misty, dreamy eyes, while the spectator’s ears are regaled with the
sounds of a sing-song voice, going through an interminable history of
human society, from the earliest days to the present time, for the
purpose of showing that the world has hitherto been on a wrong social
track, and struggling in the toils of a great mistake.” It seems that
Leroux was in the habit of reading his speeches, and though he at first
obtained the ear of the Assembly, he was ruined by having it proved upon
him that he was in the custom of reading one of his own unsaleable
printed pamphlets instead of a speech written for the occasion. Mr.
Corkran says, “when he attempted to read afterward, a resolution was
gravely proposed that no books should be read at the tribune. Well do I
recollect the scowl with which the philosopher slowly ascended the
tribune.”

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _The Magic of Kindness; or the Wondrous Story of the God Huan.
    By the Brothers Mayhew. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol.
    16mo._

The authors of this little volume are the same who wrote the popular and
charming book entitled, “The Good Genius that Turned Everything into
Gold;” and their present contribution to a cause equally good, has the
peculiar interest of a fairy tale in the treatment of facts historically
accurate. The subject of benevolence, and the miracles it works, have
rarely been presented in a manner more likely to win converts among
readers of all dispositions and capacities. The illustrations by Kenny
Meadows and George Cruikshank, are excellent; and the same may be said
of the typography of the volume.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _The Elements of Reading and Oratory. By Henry Mandeville, D.
    D., Professor of Moral Science and Belles Lettres in Hamilton
    College. A New Revised Edition. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1
    vol. 12mo._

Here is a work on Elocution deserving the title of scientific,
excelling, as it does, in the generalization and statement of laws any
book of the kind published on either side of the Atlantic. It would be
impossible in our limited space to give an account of the author’s
method, but it certainly is most thorough in pronunciation, punctuation,
modulation, the classification of sentences, and emphasis. It is not
only an admirable book for schools, but it contains much to interest
every person who would write and speak the English language accurately,
and there are few English scholars so accomplished as not to be able to
obtain new and valuable information from its perusal.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _History of Julius Cæsar. By Jacob Abbott. With Engravings. New
    York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 18mo._

The series of Mr. Abbott’s histories appear in such rapid succession
that we presume they have attained great popularity. Certainly few books
are better calculated to improve and instruct young minds. The present
volume is devoted to Cæsar, one of the world’s three military wonders,
and his eventful life is portrayed with much vigor and clearness of
narration.

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration:
Anaïs Toudouze

LE FOLLET

PARIS, Boulevart S^{t.} Martin, 61.
_Costumes de_ Camille
_Dentelles de_ Violard, _r. Choiseul 2^{bis.}—Fleurs de_ Chagot ainé, _r.
  Richelieu, 81._
_Eventail de_ Vagneur Dupré, _r. de la Paix, 19_

Graham’s Magazine]

                 *        *        *        *        *



                    I LOVE, WHEN THE MORNING BEAMS.


                    PREPARED FOR “GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE”


                           By D. W. Belisle.

[Illustration]

    I love when the morning first dawns.
    To hie to the mountains away,
    And list while the lark in the lawns
    Sings sweetly its earliest lay;
    I love when the morning first dawns.
    To hie to the mountains a-way,
    And list while the lark in the lawns
    Sings sweetly its earliest lay,
    When the last star grows dim, and the hills
    Bask in the bright beams of the morn,
    Oh

[Illustration]

    then let me stand by the rills,
    Oh then let me stand by the rills,
    And give a loud blast on my horn......
    A loud blast on my horn,
       a loud blast on my horn,
       a loud blast, a loud blast on my horn.
    Oh then let me stand by the rills,
    And give a loud blast on my horn,
    And give a loud blast on my horn.
    And give a loud blast on my horn.

    I hear on the hill-tops the sound,
      It ringeth o’er mountain and lea,
    And waketh sweet accents around
      In music far out on the sea;
    Its cadences gently subside,
      Like vespers that chant out the day,
    Then softly on echoes they ride,
      Till lost in the distance away.

                 *        *        *        *        *

Transcriber’s Notes:

Table of Contents has been added for reader convenience. Archaic
spellings and hyphenation have been retained. Punctuation has been
corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below.
For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to
condition of the originals used for preparation of the eBook.

page 193, Able May answered to ==> Abel May answered to
page 195, Able May, who by this ==> Abel May, who by this
page 195, linen and broadcloath, why ==> linen and broadcloth, why
page 197, my eye eye caught the ==> my eye caught the
page 199, she know of none ==> she knew of none
page 201, his mind an indellible ==> his mind an indelible
page 205, glory, or the the gallows, ==> glory, or the gallows,
page 205, of look and jesture. ==> of look and gesture.
page 207, that had occured during ==> that had occurred during
page 222, his two faithful mirror ==> his too faithful mirror
page 223, accidently heard Minnie’s ==> accidentally heard Minnie’s
page 226, passed and Minne was ==> passed and Minnie was
page 227, strange Dalilah, he ==> strange Delilah, he
page 228, BY THOMAS FIZGERALD, ==> BY THOMAS FITZGERALD,
page 228, he felt a superstious ==> he felt a superstitious
page 241, “I—” she begun, and again ==> “I—” she began, and again
page 243, of whom he purchased ==> of whom I purchased
page 243, House and its precints ==> House and its precincts
page 244, me!” said Mr. M., petulently. ==> me!” said Mr. M., petulantly.
page 249, abundant sppply of money ==> abundant supply of money





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