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Title: Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science, and Art, Fifth Series, No. 5, Vol. I, February 2, 1884
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.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Chambers's Journal of Popular Literature, Science, and Art, Fifth Series, No. 5, Vol. I, February 2, 1884" ***

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LITERATURE, SCIENCE, AND ART, FIFTH SERIES, NO. 5, VOL. I, FEBRUARY 2,
1884 ***



[Illustration: CHAMBERS’S JOURNAL

OF

POPULAR

LITERATURE, SCIENCE, AND ART

Fifth Series

ESTABLISHED BY WILLIAM AND ROBERT CHAMBERS, 1832

CONDUCTED BY R. CHAMBERS (SECUNDUS)

NO. 5.—VOL. I.      SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 1884.      PRICE 1½_d._]



HAMPSTEAD HEATH.


Hampstead Heath! What a world of delight seemed concentrated in that
name in the days of childhood, when donkey-riding was not yet too
undignified an amusement, and a gallop ‘cross country’ through the
bracken and furze struck terror into the heart of nurse or parent, and
covered the rider with glory! Such feats of horsemanship now belong
to the irrevocable past; but yet no part of the great ‘province of
houses’ known as London brings such pleasant memories as the quaint
old village on its northern outskirts and the wild breezy heath that
bounds it. Even now, Hampstead is rather in London, than of it, and
keeps up customs that have died out elsewhere. There, on the fifth
of November, a gallant procession takes its way through its steep
winding streets, and the centuries mingle with as little regard to
accuracy as they might do in a schoolboy’s dream the night before
an examination in history. Gallant Crusaders in chain-mail, with
the red cross embroidered on their flowing white mantles, jostle
very nineteenth-century Guardsmen, who in their turn seem to feel no
surprise at seeing Charles I. in velvet doublet and lace collar talking
amicably to a motley, spangled harlequin. But were the inhabitants in
this their yearly carnival to picture the history of their village
and of the notable personages who have lived in it, they might make a
pageant as long and varied as any that imagination can invent.

The manor of Hampstead was given by Edward the Confessor to the
monks of Westminster; and subsequent monarchs conferred on them the
neighbouring manors of Belsize and Hendon. It was at Hendon Manor-house
that Cardinal Wolsey made his first halt when journeying from Richmond
to York after his disgrace. At that time, however, Hampstead itself had
no great claim to notice, its inhabitants being, we are told, chiefly
washerwomen, whose services were in great demand among the inhabitants
of London. That this peaceful if humble occupation could be carried
on, proves at least that the wolves which, according to Dame Juliana
Berners’s _Boke of St Albans_, abounded among the northern heights of
London in the fifteenth century, had been exterminated by the end of
the sixteenth. The wild-boar lingered longer; and so late as 1772,
we hear of the hunting of a deer in Belsize Park. This, however, can
scarcely be regarded as genuine sport, as it is advertised to take
place among other amusements intended to allure visitors to Belsize
House, which had been opened as a pleasure-house by an energetic
individual of the name of Howell. He describes in his advertisement
all the attractions of the place, and promises for the protection
of visitors that ‘twelve stout fellows completely armed will patrol
between Belsize and London.’

Early in the eighteenth century chalybeate wells were discovered
at Hampstead, and as they were recommended by several physicians,
the hitherto quiet village became a fashionable and dissipated
watering-place. Idle London flocked there: youths who were delighted
to show their finery in a new place; girls who were young enough to
delight in the prospect of dancing all night; gamblers of both sexes;
wits and fops. They danced, lost their money at cards and dice, talked
scandal of each other, and drank of the chalybeate well, which Sam
Weller has characterised for all generations as ‘water with a taste of
warm flat-irons,’ till Hampstead lost its novelty, and the company went
elsewhere to go through the same programme.

Among the crowd of nonentities that frequent the Hampstead Wells
there is one notable figure, that of Richard Steele. In 1712, Steele
retired from London to a small house on Haverstock Hill, on the road
to Hampstead. Here, doubtless, his friend and fellow-labourer Addison
visited him; and the two would find in the humours and follies of the
company at the Wells material for the next number of the _Tatler_,
the publication of which had now been going on for three years.
Let us picture the two friends passing together through the gay
company—Steele, radiant, we may be sure, in gay apparel, seizing at
once on the humorous characteristics of the scene; while Addison would
tone down his companion’s exuberant fancy, and draw his own thoughtful
moralisings from the follies he witnessed. On summer evenings they
would walk on the Heath, and admire the view across the swelling green
slopes to the town of Harrow, where one day was to be educated my Lord
Byron, a young gentleman who would win greater fame as a poet than even
Addison’s acquaintance—a protégé to begin with, an enemy at last—the
lame Catholic gentleman, Mr Alexander Pope.

The friendship between Steele and Addison must ever remain a puzzle.
They had talent in common, Steele having the more original genius,
Addison the more cultivated taste; but otherwise there seems no point
of contact between the natures of graceless, impulsive, erring, loving
Dick, and his cold, conscientious, methodical comrade. To our century,
as to his own, Steele is ‘Dicky;’ the king made him Sir Richard, and
on the strength of his title he took a fine house in Soho Square, and
swaggered more than ever, and increased his expenses and his debts, but
to all the world he was Dicky Steele still; whereas, had the honour of
a baronetcy befallen Mr Secretary Addison, can we doubt that to all
posterity he would have been known as ‘Sir Joseph?’ Yet these two men,
unlike each other as they were, united to perform in an unobtrusive
fashion a great work; they purified English literature, and did much
to reform English manners. In a society which had learned to regard
truth, honesty, and virtue as absurd, they showed, not the wickedness
of vice—no one would have listened to that—but its folly. When the fops
and gamblers found that they, as well as the honest men they sneered
at, could be made the subject of satire, they began to doubt if their
cherished amusements were such essential characteristics of ‘men of
spirit’ as they had fancied. The gulf that lies between the comedies
of Wycherley and those of Sheridan was first opened by the gentle
raillery of the _Tatler_ and the _Spectator_. The later dramatist had
no keener moral sense than the earlier, but he lived in an atmosphere
which, though by no means pure, was healthier than that breathed by
his predecessor; and in which it was necessary that virtue, however
weak, should in the end defeat the vice that tried to trade upon its
feebleness.

Of the clear-cut grace of style that distinguished the writing of the
_Spectator_ there is no need to speak; it still remains the model
of English prose, while the tiny, whitish-brown sheet, the perusal
of which used to add to the flavour of Belinda’s morning chocolate,
was the progenitor of the immense mass of periodical literature that
surrounds us to-day. But if the two friends had done nothing more than
give us—Steele the first sketch, Addison the finished portrait, of
old-fashioned, kind, eccentric Sir Roger de Coverley, they would have
deserved a high and loving place in our memory.

Thirty years later, the figure of another literary man was to be seen
at Hampstead. Not so gorgeous as Dick, not so precise as Addison, is
slovenly, tea-drinking, long-worded Samuel Johnson; but he is their
legitimate successor, nevertheless. He, too, is a man of letters,
living by the produce of his pen, and appealing for support to the
public, and not to the kindness or charity of private patrons. Indeed,
he scorns such condescending patronage, as a certain stinging letter
to Lord Chesterfield remains to testify. In 1748, Mrs Johnson, for the
sake of the country air, took lodgings at Hampstead; and there her
husband wrote his satire, _The Vanity of Human Wishes_. Johnson did
not spend all his time at Hampstead, for he was obliged to return and
drudge in smoky London in order to provide for her comfort. Boswell
tells us that ‘she indulged in country air and good living at an
unsuitable expense; and she by no means treated her husband with that
complacency which is the most engaging quality in a wife.’ Yet Johnson
loved faithfully and mourned sincerely the querulous, exacting woman,
a quarter of a century older than himself, and cherished an undoubting
belief in her beauty; while all save him perceived that if she had ever
possessed any—which they doubted—it had long disappeared.

Towards the end of the eighteenth century, Hampstead became the
dwelling-place of two famous lawyers, both of them Scotch—Lords
Erskine and Mansfield. Thomas Erskine, youngest son of the tenth Earl
of Buchan, and ‘a penniless lad with a lang pedigree,’ began life
as a midshipman; but disliking the service, he, after his father’s
death, invested the whole of his little patrimony in the purchase
of an ensigncy in the 1st Foot. When, some years later, he felt his
true vocation to be the bar, he was burdened with the responsibility
of a wife and children; and it was only by the exercise of economy
nearly approaching privation that he succeeded in maintaining himself
during the three years’ study that must elapse before he was called to
the bar. Even when he received his qualification, it seemed that he
was to fail through lack of opportunity to display his talents; but
opportunity came at last, and his brilliant career led to the Lord
Chancellorship of England, a peerage, and the Order of the Thistle.
All the power of his oratory and of his ever-increasing influence was
devoted to the promotion of freedom, civil and religious. He stood up
boldly for the independence of juries against the bullying of judges;
he advocated concessions to the Catholics; and carrying his love of
mercy and justice beyond the human race, he brought into parliament a
bill for the prevention of cruelty to animals. The measure failed; for
popular feeling on the subject was then such as is expressed in the
famous couplet—

    Things is come to a pretty pass,
    When a man mayn’t wollop his own jackass.

But before Erskine died, it had become law.

William Murray, Earl of Mansfield, was the eleventh of the fourteen
children of Viscount Stormont, of the castle of Scone, in Perthshire.
So poor was his lordship, that, as we are told by Mansfield’s
biographer, the only fare he could provide for those fourteen
mouths—which though high-born, were every whit as hungry as if they
had been peasants’—was oatmeal porridge. The family was Jacobite in
politics, so its fortunes were little likely to improve; but by the
influence of Bishop Atterbury, who was at heart a Jacobite too, little
Willie was admitted to Westminster School. He made good use of his
time there; and by listening to the debates in Westminster Hall he
became enamoured of the law, and resolved to devote himself to it.
Difficulties enough lay before him; but by the aid of an indomitable
perseverance, a gentle manner, and a voice so musical that none could
listen to it unmoved, he conquered them all. Throughout his legal
career he was noted for strict integrity and justice. He advocated free
trade and religious toleration, and used every effort in his power to
decrease the waste of time and money in the business of law-courts; but
his greatest title to honour is that he was the first to decide that no
slave could remain a slave on English soil.

Early in this century, the year after Waterloo was fought, Hampstead
was familiar with the forms of three men to whom life gave only scorn,
insult, and disappointment, yet whose memory lingers about it and makes
it hallowed ground. In 1816, Leigh Hunt lived at Hampstead in a part
called the Vale of Health; and there Keats, who lodged in the village,
and Shelley were his frequent visitors. Each of the three was more or
less a martyr. For the crime of describing the Prince Regent—whose
memory as George IV. is not highly honoured—as an ‘Adonis of fifty,’
Hunt was thrown into prison; while the political reviews and journals
abused his graceful poems and scholarly essays as if they had been
firebrands, to extinguish which every exertion must be made. They
succeeded in torturing him, in reducing him to poverty and dependence,
but they did not succeed in changing Leigh Hunt’s convictions. He would
not bow down to the Adonis of fifty.

Shelley was rather a visitor than a resident at Hampstead Heath;
but Keats composed not a few of his poems here. The sorrows of his
sorrowful life had not yet reached their climax in 1816. Already he
was struggling with poverty, disease, and hopeless, passionate love;
but he had not yet published those poems which were to rouse such
wrath in the bosoms of a few critics, and such delight in thousands of
readers. But at Hampstead most of them were written. Here he breathed
life into the long dead myth of Endymion, surrounding it with such a
wealth of description as seems scarcely possible to a youth of such
limited experience. Can commonplace Hampstead Heath, the chosen resort
of Bank-holiday excursionists, be the prototype of that Grecian valley
where the goddess of night stooped to kiss Endymion! Here were written
the sad story of _The Pot of Basil_ and the legend of _The Eve of St
Agnes_; here, in 1819, was composed that most exquisite _Ode to a
Nightingale_, which, even were it his only production, might place
Keats among our greater poets.

The memory loves to trace the footsteps of departed greatness; but
even did no such recollections as these endear Hampstead Heath, it
would still be precious as a spot where half-asphyxiated Londoners may
inhale a fresh untainted breeze, and children may romp to their hearts’
content. ‘I like Hampstead Heath much better than Switzerland,’ says a
small boy in one of Du Maurier’s sketches in _Punch_. ‘But you haven’t
seen Switzerland,’ objects his sister, a practical young lady a year
or two older. ‘O yes; I have seen it on the map,’ is his reply. And
if he had really visited Switzerland, the little fellow would perhaps
still have preferred the broken, sandy soil, the grass and ferns, of
Hampstead Heath.

Du Maurier is the Heath’s own artist. He lives on its borders, and most
of the backgrounds of his out-of-door sketches are borrowed from its
scenery. He may daily be seen there—till lately accompanied by his dog
Chang, the great St Bernard whose portrait has so often appeared in the
pages of _Punch_. But, alas! Chang is no more; he has fallen a victim
to consumption and heart-disease, and Hampstead weeps for him. Seldom
has any dog been so widely lamented. ‘He is mourned by a large circle
of friends,’ said the _World_, ‘and the family of which he was so long
a member is inconsolable for his loss.’



BY MEAD AND STREAM.

BY CHARLES GIBBON.


CHAPTER VII.—AN UNLOVED LIFE.

It was a little time before the father spoke again. But without being
able to see his face, even without being able to hear him breathe,
Philip felt that he was struggling with something in himself. Perhaps
it was only a struggle to regain that composure of manner which he had
temporarily lost. In this he succeeded. But was that all Mr Hadleigh
was struggling with in those few moments of silence? At anyrate, when
he spoke, his voice was steadier than before; more like its ordinary
tone, but without its hardness.

‘Before I proceed, may I ask what was the purport of the two letters
you received?’

‘The one was simply urging me on no account to fail to start in the
_Hertford Castle_ as arranged, and assuring me of such welcome as I
might desire.’

‘That was not much to write about. And the other?’

‘The other inclosed a note which I am to deliver personally to a firm
of solicitors in the City, and requesting that I should bring with me
the packet they would intrust to my care.’

‘Is that all?’

‘That is all, sir.’

‘One question more. Are you _very_ anxious to make this journey, which
may end in nothing? Is there no one here who could persuade you to give
it up altogether?’

Philip was a good deal perplexed as to how he should answer this
question. There was Some one who could have persuaded him to stay at
home; but the sweet voice of that Some one was again whispering in his
ear, ‘It was your mother’s wish that you should go;’ and besides, there
was the natural desire of youth to see strange countries and peoples.

‘I thought, sir, that this question of my going out to Uncle Shield had
been all settled long ago,’ he replied awkwardly, for he knew that any
reference to the command laid upon him by his mother always disturbed
his father.

‘That is not an answer to my questions.’

‘Well, I consider it my duty to go.’

‘And you wish to go?’

‘I do—now. Even setting aside the prospects he holds out to me, I feel
that I must go.’

The father made a mental note of the fact that his son gave no reply to
the second question; but he did not press it farther at this moment.
He seemed to draw breath, and then went on in a low voice: ‘I think,
Philip, you have not found me an exacting parent. Although I have never
failed to point out to you the way in which it would please me most to
see you walk, I have never insisted upon it. And I will own that on
your part your conduct has been up to a certain point satisfactory.’

‘Thank you, sir.’

‘That certain point is your procrastination in the choice of your
future career. You have shown that you do not care about business—and
my own conviction is that you are unfitted for it—and you will not
decide upon a profession. Although you have dabbled in medicine and
law, you have not entered earnestly upon the study of either. I have
been patient with this wavering state of mind which you have displayed
ever since you left the university. I do not wish to force you into any
occupation which you may dislike, and would, therefore, certainly fail
in; for then you would console yourself by blaming me for being the
cause of your failure.’

‘Oh, no, no—do not think me so ungrateful.’

‘But I did hope,’ continued the father calmly, without heeding the
interruption, ‘that before you came to think of marriage, you would
have settled with yourself upon some definite course of action in the
future.’

‘Your reproaches are just, sir,’ answered Philip earnestly and with
some agitation, ‘and I deserve them. But this journey will decide what
I am to be and do.’

‘I did not mean to reproach you,’ said the father, and again there was
that distant note of sadness which sounded so strangely in his voice;
‘but it seemed to me right to remind you of these things before telling
you the rest. I reproach myself more than you.’

‘I do not understand.’

‘Listen. My young life was passed in a home which had been suddenly
stricken down from wealth and ease to poverty. On every hand I heard
the one explanation given for my father’s haggard looks, my mother’s
wasting illness, for my poor sister’s white face and constant
drudgery with her needle, and for my own unsatisfied hunger; and that
explanation was—the want of money.... I resolved that I should conquer
this demon that was destroying us all—I resolved that I should have
money.’

Here he paused, as if the memory of that time of misery proved too
painful for him. Philip’s sympathetic nature was drawn closer to his
father at that moment than it had ever been before. He rose impulsively
and grasped his arm. In the darkness the forms of the two men were
indistinguishable to each other; but with that sympathetic touch each
saw the other clearly in a new light.

‘My poor father,’ murmured Philip, clenching his teeth to keep down the
sob that was in his throat.

There was silence; and at that moment a pale gleam of moonlight stole
across the room. But it seemed only to darken the corner in which the
two men stood.

By-and-by Mr Hadleigh gently removed his son’s hand.

‘Sit down again, Philip, or go over to the window so that I may see
you.’

Philip walked quietly to a place opposite the window, and putting his
hands behind him, rested them on the ledge of a bookcase, leaning back
so that the light fell full upon his frank, handsome face, making it
look very pale in his anxiety. He knew that his father was gazing
earnestly at him, and as he could not see him, he was glad to hear his
voice again, which in some measure took away the uncomfortable feeling
produced by the singular position.

‘You know that I gained my object,’ Mr Hadleigh proceeded, with a
mingling of bitterness and regret in his voice; ‘but at what a cost!...
All the lightness of heart which makes the lives of even the poorest
children happy at times—all the warmth of hope and enthusiasm which
brightens the humblest youth, were gone. It was not hope that led me
on: it was determination. All emotion was dead within me: at twenty I
was an old man; and in the hard grasping struggle with which I fought
against the demon Poverty, and won the favour of the greater demon,
Wealth—even love itself was sacrificed.’

He paused again; but this time Philip did not speak or move. There was
something so pitiful as well as painful in this confession that he was
dumb.

‘They—father, mother, sister—all died before I had broken down the
first barrier between me and fortune. I shed no tears: each death in
poverty hardened me more and more.... It was—your mother who enabled me
to break down the first barrier’——

‘Ah, I am glad of that,’ exclaimed the son with a burst of happy relief.

‘Wait. I did not know what love was: I did not love her.’ (Philip
started, but remained silent.) ‘She had money: I married her for it.
She did not love me; but she had quarrelled with the man she did love,
and accepted me in her mad chagrin. We understood each other, and I was
content—she was not. From the day of her marriage to the day of her
death, her life was one weary lamentation that in her moment of passion
I had crossed her path—a life of self-scourging and regret for the man
she loved. I saw it, and knew it; but I did not know what love was, and
I could not pity it. I did know something of hate; and I believed she
hated me.... Had she only cared for me a little, it might have been
different,’ he added in a lower voice, and as if speaking to himself.

‘You wrong her, father, you wrong her,’ said Philip in a husky,
tremulous voice.

‘It may be; but I did not know then, what I understand too well now.
A pity, a pity—for it might have been so different! As it was, her
brother turned from her too, and would not forgive her. He hated me—he
hates me: because the lover she had deserted was his close friend; and
whilst I prospered, his friend failed. In a few years the man had lost
everything he possessed, and died—some say by his own hand: killed
by me, as your mother seemed to believe, and as Austin Shield does
believe. I had ruined his life, he said, and I was as much responsible
for his death, as if I had given him poison or shot him. These were the
last words Shield ever spoke to me.’

‘It must have been in mere passion. He cannot believe that now, or he
would not send for me.’

‘I do not know. I went on my way, unheeding his words, and would have
forgotten him, but for your mother’s grief. I had no home-life; but I
did my duty, as it seemed to me. The money which had been brought to
me was repaid with compound interest: all that money could buy was at
your mother’s command: all that she could wish for her children was
supplied to them, and you all seemed satisfied. But I was not with
you—you were hushed and lifeless in my presence, and seemed only happy
in my absence. Sitting in this room, I have heard your voices raised
in gladness, and if I passed in amongst you, seeking for that strange
something which the Demon Wealth with all his gold could not supply,
it seemed as if the Demon sat upon my shoulder, frightening you and
rendering you speechless. So I lived alone, although so near you, and
my Familiar became kinder and kinder to me, until I wearied of him. I
sought I did not know what, and could not find it.’

He stopped, breathing heavily, as if suppressing his emotion.

‘Oh, if you had only spoken to us as you are speaking to me now,
father!’ cried Philip, so earnestly that it sounded like a reproach.

‘It would have been better,’ was the sad reply. ‘I tell you these
things that you may understand the proposal I am about to make to you.
I now know what love is, and as too often happens, the knowledge comes
too late. But it will help me in my effort to make two people happy.
Can you guess who they are?’

‘I am afraid you must inform me.’

‘Yourself and Ma—Miss Heathcote. I propose that you should stay at home
and marry as soon as may be agreeable to the lady. I shall settle upon
you a sufficient fortune to enable you to live comfortably; but I shall
expect you to enter some profession. Do you consent?’

Here was a proposal at which Philip’s whole nature jumped gleefully.
But that voice was in his ears, and he overcame the temptation.

‘It was my mother’s wish that I should go, if my uncle ever summoned
me,’ he said in a respectful but decisive voice, ‘and I must go.’

‘So be it,’ rejoined the father, and there was a note of bitterness in
his tone; ‘I shall not again attempt to alter your plans.’

There was a peculiar emphasis on the ‘I.’


CHAPTER VIII.—‘WILL YOU SPEAK THAT WORD?’

Madge was singing as she dressed in her pretty little room, filled
with the exhilarating breath of the early morning, which the wide open
window admitted freely. This was no dainty lady’s chamber full of
costly nick-knacks. Everything in it was useful, and everything was so
bright and simple, that glancing into it on a winter’s day, one might
have imagined that summer still lingered here.

As she stood at the chintz-draped toilet-table she could see the green
glades apparently rising amidst the trees, one glade half in shadow,
another with its dewdrops glistening like diamonds in the morning
sunshine. Beyond that on the high ground were yellow plains of ripe
grain, relieved by black and gray patches, which she knew to be fields
of beans and tares. Down below there, at the foot of the meadows, the
calmly flowing river sent silver flashes through every space left by
the willows and elms. Farther on, she saw the stumpy tower of the old
village church struggling to raise its head through a mass of ivy.
And to all this her window, with its surrounding network of rose-tree
branches, formed a suitable frame.

It was not a blithe song she was singing, and yet the hope that was in
her voice and in her eyes took away from it all thought of sadness.
It was that now old-fashioned but once popular song of the _Soldier’s
Tear_, and she dwelt with sympathy on the lines, ‘Upon the hill he
turned, to take a last fond look.’ She repeated them dreamily again and
again, and then her face would brighten into smiles when the happier
picture presented itself of the time when she should stand on the top
of the hill, or at the more probable although more prosaic railway
station, welcoming Philip home.

Ah, it was much better to think of that. And then, what was a year,
or what were two years, to reckon in their young lives, when all the
succeeding years would be theirs to pass together—always together—no
matter what Aunt Hessy might say? Besides, there would be his letters!
He would speak to her in them every day, and she would speak to him
every day. Of course, the ridiculous postal arrangements would not
permit them to receive the letters on the day they were written; but
when they _were_ delivered, they would contain a full record of their
daily lives.

Up from the barnyard came the loud voice of one of the labourers,
rising above the obstreperous squeaking of the pigs he was feeding, as
he drawled out a verse of some rustic ballad—

    Ow Mary Styles, Ow Mary Styles,
      It’s ’long ov yow I’m dying,
    But if yow won’t have me at last,
      Why, then, there’s no use crying.

A delightful combination of sentiment and philosophy, thought Madge,
smiling.

Then came the other sounds which intimated that another day’s work of
the farm had begun. The milk-cans rattled as they were whirled out of
the dairy to the waiting carts; merry jests were passed between the
men and maids; harness clattered and clanked as the horses were put
into the carts or reaping-machine; and there was much horse-language
mingling with the confusion of dialects as the harvest hands turned out
to the fields. The melancholy ‘moo’ of the cows rose from the barn as,
having been milked, they were driven out to the meadows; the cocks,
although they had been crowing since daybreak, crowed with louder
defiance than ever, now that their hens were cackling and clucking
around them; and the ducks emitted their curious self-satisfied ‘quack’
as they waggled off to the pond.

All these sounds warned Madge that she was somewhat later than usual in
getting downstairs.

She was a little startled when she discovered on the hall table a
letter bearing the Ringsford Manor crest; for she knew at once it
was not from Philip, and feared that some mishap might have befallen
him. She knew it was not from him, because he never used this crest,
although all the other members of the family did. It had been the
outcome of Miss Hadleigh’s vanity, to which the others took kindly,
whilst Philip laughed at it.

She learned that the note had been delivered about half an hour ago by
young Jerry Mogridge, who left a special message that the ‘flunkey’ who
gave it to him said it was to be given to her the moment she came down.
She was surprised to find that it was from Philip’s father, and still
more surprised by its contents.

    MY DEAR MISS HEATHCOTE—The unusual hour at which this will
    be delivered will at once apprise you that the motive which
    prompts it is an important one. I cannot tell you how important
    it is in my eyes; and I hope and believe that you will not only
    appreciate the motive, but cordially sympathise with it.

    Only a few hours ago I had to ask your assistance in a matter
    which entirely concerned myself; in the present instance I have
    to ask your assistance in a matter on which, I believe, your
    own happiness depends. You shall judge for yourself; and your
    answer will enable me to decide a question which has of late
    occupied my mind a great deal.

    You have not hitherto heard me raise any objection to the
    journey Philip is about to make. To-day I decided that he ought
    not to go away. But after a long and painful conversation with
    him, I find that no words of mine can move him from his purpose.

    Now, my dear Miss Heathcote, will you help me to hold him back
    from this useless enterprise?

    I think you will—unless I am mistaken as to the nature of your
    feelings in regard to him.

    My first and chief reason for desiring to keep him at home is
    my anxiety to see you and him happy—to see you two united, and
    him, under your influence, working earnestly in some profession.

    I fear there is much danger that this desire of mine will
    never be realised, if he is permitted to spend a year with one
    who would delight in thwarting any wish of mine. You know his
    impulsive and impressionable nature. You are too young for
    experience to have taught you—and I earnestly trust it may
    never teach you—that absence, change of scene, and adverse
    counsels are not the most favourable conditions for keeping the
    most honest man steadfast.

    Pray, do not misunderstand me. I do not doubt Philip. He is
    honest; but with such a nature as his, I think the trial of his
    honesty is too severe; and I object to it all the more because
    it is absolutely unnecessary. My proposal to him is that he
    should abandon this journey, that he should enter a profession
    at once, and that you should be married at as early a date as
    you may be inclined to fix. I need not say that you will be
    provided with ample means.

    In the course of my life, few of the desires springing from my
    affections have been gratified. I beg of you to gratify this
    one. Although he resolutely declines to forego his purpose
    for my sake, I feel assured that you have only to speak one
    word—‘stay’—and he will forego it for yours.

    Will you speak that word?

    Believe me, your humble servant,

            LLOYD HADLEIGH.

There was something so pathetic and yet so strange in this appeal of
the father that she should keep his son near him, that Madge was pained
as well as bewildered. Keep Philip at home!—marry him!—be happy!—help
to steady his impulsive nature and influence him in some good work!
What else was there that she could desire more? How beautiful the
visions were that these suggestions conjured up. Her face brightened as
if a blaze of sunshine fell upon it ... and then it suddenly darkened.

She, too, like Philip remembered the dead mother’s wish, and hesitated.
But the question presented itself: if his mother had been alive now and
had understood all the circumstances, would she have insisted upon this
wish—which seemed to cause the father so much anxiety—being carried out?

She read the letter again, and this time her cheeks flushed a little at
the doubt of her implied in the words, ‘unless I am mistaken as to the
nature of your feelings.’ The unpleasant sensation was only momentary.
How could he—how even could Philip—realise her feelings? But she also
became conscious of a certain vagueness in the reasons given for the
anxiety expressed by Mr Hadleigh. Were she to grant the appeal, would
it not be a proof of her want of faith in Philip? _That_ idea was
enough to make her answer ‘no’ at once.

And yet she hesitated. The poor old man was evidently very much in
earnest. (She always thought of Mr Hadleigh as an old man, older than
Uncle Dick, although he was twenty years younger than the latter.) To
say ‘no’ would cause him much pain: to say ‘yes’ would afford him much
happiness, and at the same time bring about the completion of her own.

There was a yelping of dogs, and above it the stentorian voice of her
uncle shouting: ‘Down, Dash, down—here, Rover, here—be quiet, Tip, you
brute.’

The door opened, dogs rushed in and bounded round Madge in wild
delight. They were followed by Uncle Dick, his fresh ruddy face beaming
with the happiness of health and content.

‘What are you dreaming about, Madge? Breakfast ready? We are as hungry
as if we had been starving for a week. Thought I should have met you in
the meadow as usual. What’s the matter?’

‘I am trying to solve a riddle, uncle.’

‘What!’ he exclaimed with a burst of laughter, ‘at this time in the
morning. O ho! I see Master Philip was here too long yesterday.’

‘Will you try it?’

‘Don’t be a fool. Call the Missus and let’s have breakfast.’

‘To please me, uncle,’ she said, putting her hand on his arm.

‘Well, what is it?’

‘Suppose somebody asked you to do something that you wanted to do
yourself, what would you say?’

‘That’s easily answered—yes, of course.’

‘But, suppose there were reasons connected with other people on account
of which you ought to say “no,” what would you do?’

‘Please myself.—Now, let’s have our victuals, and confound your
riddles, or I’ll send for the doctor and the parson at once.’

There was not much help to Madge in this easy settlement of the
difficulty. But she had a maxim which did help her: whenever you have
a doubt as to which of two courses you should take, choose the one
which is least agreeable to yourself. She decided to follow it in this
instance, as she had done in many others of less importance.



THE MUSE OF PARODY.


Reader, are you of those who cannot tolerate their favourite authors
or their favourite poems being parodied? A lady-friend of the
writer’s lately said, in regard to one of the best-known poems of a
distinguished poet: ‘I admired and liked it once; but I can hardly
read it now, since I saw that dreadful parody of it that appeared in
_Punch_.’ If you are of this sensitive class, we fear this article is
not for you. But we feel pretty sure of an audience; for we know that
the large majority of readers can relish a clever parody without in
the least losing their enjoyment in or respect for the thing parodied.
And it is well that it is so; for parody in some shape and to some
extent is early as the beginnings of literature itself; and if the
fame of poets depended on their immunity from travesty, every poet
that has ever won his bays, and whose reputation now rests secure and
impregnable, would have been laughed out of court long since.

In speaking of modern English parody, one’s thoughts turn first, almost
inevitably, to the brothers Horace and James Smith, who, in _Rejected
Addresses_, may be regarded as the first to practise parody in a
systematised fashion, as a vehicle of fun and humour. The _Rejected
Addresses_ won high praise from Jeffrey, who pronounced the parody on
Crabbe ‘an exquisite and masterly imitation;’ while the poet himself
declared it to be ‘admirably done.’ We shall give a short extract
from it, which we think hits off Crabbe’s manner in a way that fully
justifies Jeffrey’s criticism:

    John Richard William Alexander Dwyer
    Was footman to Justinian Stubbs, Esquire;
    But when John Dwyer listed in the Blues,
    Emanuel Jennings polished Stubbs’s shoes.
    Emanuel Jennings brought his youngest boy
    Up as a corn-cutter—a safe employ;
    In Holywell Street, St Pancras, he was bred
    (At number twenty-seven, it is said),
    Pacing the pump, and near the Granby’s Head.
    He would have bound him to some shop in town,
    But with a premium he could not come down.
    Pat was the urchin’s name—a red-haired youth,
    Fonder of purl and skittle-grounds than truth.

In regard to the parody of Sir Walter Scott in _Rejected Addresses_,
the poet himself said: ‘I must have done it myself, though I forget
on what occasion.’ Here are a few lines descriptive of the Drury Lane
Theatre on fire:

    At length the mist awhile was cleared,
    When lo! amid the wreck upreared,
    Gradual a moving head appeared,
      And Eagle firemen knew
    ’Twas Joseph Muggins, name revered,
      The foreman of their crew.
    Loud shouted all in signs of woe,
    ‘A Muggins to the rescue, ho!’
      And poured the hissing tide.

Thackeray was especially happy and especially funny in his Irish
burlesques. _Larry O’Toole_, a parody of the rollicking Irish
bacchanalian songs with which Charles Lever made us so familiar,
admirably hits the medium between close imitation and high burlesque.
There is a dash in it both of _Larry O’Hale_ and the _Widow Malone_. We
quote two of the three verses:

    You’ve all heard of Larry O’Toole,
    Of the beautiful town of Drumgoole.
          He had but one eye
          To ogle ye by;
    Och, murther, but that was a jew’l!
              A fool
    He made of the girls, this O’Toole.

    ’Twas he was the boy didn’t fail,
    That tuck down purtaties and mail;
          He never would shrink
          From any sthrong dthrink;
    Was it whisky or Drogheda ale,
              I’m bail
    This Larry would swallow a pail.

Moore’s well-known lines—

    I never nursed a young gazelle
      To glad me with its soft dark eye,
    But when it came to know me well,
      And love me, it was sure to die—

have been frequently parodied. Here is one version which, we think, is
not very familiar:

    I never had a piece of toast
      Particularly long and wide,
    But fell upon the sanded floor,
      And always on the buttered side.

The following is by Mr H. C. Pennel, author of _Puck on Pegasus_:

    I never roved by Cynthia’s beam,
      To gaze upon the starry sky,
    But some old stiff-backed beetle came,
      And charged into my pensive eye.

    And oh! I never did the swell
      In Regent Street among the beaus,
    But smuts the most prodigious fell,
      And always settled on my nose!

In those two delightful volumes, _Alice in Wonderland_ and _Through the
Looking-glass_, ‘Lewis Carroll’ gives us some capital travesties. Mr
Southey’s poem beginning ‘“You are old, Father William,” the young man
said,’ is so familiar, that every reader will appreciate the point of
the burlesque, without needing the original before him:

    ‘You are old, Father William,’ the young man said,
      ‘And your hair has become very white;
    And yet you incessantly stand on your head—
      Do you think at your age it is right?’

    ‘In my youth,’ Father William replied to his son,
      ‘I thought it might injure the brain;
    But now that I’m perfectly sure I have none,
      Why, I do it again and again.’

The old nursery song, ‘“Will you walk into my parlour?” said the Spider
to the Fly,’ the same writer has likewise burlesqued:

    ‘Will you walk a little faster?’ said a whiting to a snail;
    ‘There’s a porpoise close behind me, and he’s treading on my tail.
    See how eagerly the lobsters and the turtles all advance!
    They are waiting on the shingle—will you come and join the dance?
    Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you, will you join the dance?
    Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you, won’t you join the dance?’

The late Mr J. R. Planché, whose innumerable fairy extravaganzas were
so full of fun and humour, was also an expert in parody. We give the
first verse of a burlesque by him of the once popular song, _When other
Lips_:

    When other lips and other eyes
      Their tales of love shall tell—
    Which means the usual sort of lies
      You’ve heard from every swell;
    When, bored with every sort of bosh,
      You’d give the world to see
    A friend whose love you know will wash,
      Oh, then remember me!

The funniest burlesque of Wordsworth’s _We are Seven_, with which we
are acquainted, is by Mr H. S. Leigh:

    ‘I thought it would have sent me mad
      Last night about eleven.’
    Said I: ‘What is it makes you bad?
    How many apples have you had?’
    She answered: ‘Only seven.’

    ‘And are you sure you took no more,
      My little maid?’ quoth I.
    ‘Oh, please, sir, mother gave me four,
      But they were in a pie.’

    ‘If that’s the case,’ I stammered out,
      ‘Of course you’ve had eleven.’
    The maiden answered with a pout:
      ‘I ain’t had more nor seven.’

Here are four lines from a travesty of Tennyson’s _May Queen_—

    ‘You may lay me in my bed, mother—my head is throbbing sore;
    And mother, prithee, let the sheets be duly aired before;
    And if you’d do a kindness to your poor desponding child,
    Draw me a pot of beer, mother—and, mother, draw it mild.’

It is not necessary to name the original of the following. We quote two
of the three verses which compose the whole:

    He wore a brace of pistols, the night when first we met;
    His deep-lined brow was frowning beneath his wig of jet;
    His footsteps had the moodiness, his voice the hollow tone,
    Of a bandit chief, who feels remorse, and tears his hair alone.
      I saw him but at half-price, but methinks I see him now,
      In the tableau of the last act, with the blood upon his brow.

    A _private_ bandit’s belt and boots, when next we met, he wore;
    His salary, he told me, was lower than before;
    And standing at the O. P. wing, he strove, and not in vain,
    To borrow half a sovereign, which he never paid again.
      I saw it but a moment—and I wish I saw it now—
      As he buttoned up his pocket with a condescending bow.

Tennyson’s well-known lyric, _Home they brought her warrior dead_, has
been thus amusingly parodied by Mr Sawyer:

    Home they brought her sailor son,
      Grown a man across the sea,
    Tall and broad, and black of beard,
      And hoarse of voice as man may be.

    Hand to shake, and mouth to kiss,
      Both he offered ere he spoke;
    But she said: ‘What man is this
      Comes to play a sorry joke?’

    Then they praised him, called him ‘smart,’
      ‘Tightest lad that ever stept;’
    But her son she did not know,
      And she neither smiled nor wept.

    Rose, a nurse of ninety years,
      Set a pigeon-pie in sight;
    She saw him eat: ‘’Tis he, ’tis he!’
      She knew him—by his appetite.

The following clever parody of Wordsworth’s _Lucy_ is but little known.
It was written by Hartley Coleridge, and reappeared some years ago in
_Notes and Queries_. We shall quote the first verse of the original:

    She dwelt among the untrodden ways,
      Beside the banks of Dove;
    A maid whom there were none to praise,
      And very few to love.

We give two of the three verses composing the parody:

    He lived among the untrodden ways,
      To Rydal Mount that lead;
    A bard whom there were none to praise,
      And very few to read.

    Unread his works—his _Milk-white Doe_
      With dust is dark and dim;
    It’s still in Longman’s shop; and oh!
      The difference to him!

From a parody of Tennyson’s _Mariana_, which appeared in an Australian
paper, we take the concluding verse. The burden of the original ballad,
it will be remembered, runs:

        She only said: ‘My life is dreary;
          He cometh not,’ she said;
        She said: ‘I am aweary, aweary—
          I would that I were dead!’

    They lifted him with kindly care;
      They took him by the heels and head;
    Across the floor, and up the stair,
      They bore him safely to his bed.
    They wrapped the blankets warm and tight,
      And round about his nose and chin
      They drew the sheets, and tucked them in,
    And whispered: ‘Poor old boy—Good-night!’
    He murmured: ‘Boys, oh, deary, deary,
      That punch _was_ strong,’ he said;
    He said: ‘I am aweary, aweary—
      Thank heaven, I’ve got to bed!’

An American magazine published some years ago a series of burlesques of
the old nursery rhymes, of which we give specimens:

    Little Jack Horner,
    Of Latin no scorner,
      In the second declension did spy
    How of nouns there are some
    Which, ending in _um_,
      Do _not_ make their plural in _i_.

    Jack and Jill
    Have studied Mill,
      And all that sage has taught too;
    Now both promote
    Jill’s claim to vote,
      As every good girl ought to.

The case for the evolutionists is thus tersely put by an American poet,
parodying _Sing a song of Sixpence_:

    Sing a song of phosphates,
      Fibrine in a line,
    Four-and-twenty follicles
      In the van of time.
    When the phosphorescence
      Evoluted brain,
    Superstition ended,
      Man began to reign.

Pope’s familiar couplet—

    Here shall the spring its earliest sweets bestow,
    Here the first roses of the year shall blow—

has been thus travestied by Miss Catherine Fanshawe, who accomplishes
the step from the sublime to the ridiculous by the change of two words
only:

    Here shall the spring its earliest coughs bestow,
    Here the first noses of the year shall blow.

Among living parodists, few, if any, excel Mr C. S. Calverley, who
seems to possess every qualification for success in this sort of work.
The reader will at once recognise how happily he has caught Tennyson’s
method and manner in the following parody of _The Brook_, especially in
the blank-verse portion. We quote two verses and the conclusion:

        ‘I loiter down by thorp and town;
          For any job I’m willing;
        Take here and there a dusty brown,
          And here and there a shilling.

        ‘I steal from th’ parson’s strawberry plats,
          I hide by the Squire’s covers;
        I teach the sweet young housemaids what’s
          The art of trapping lovers.’

    Thus on he prattled like a babbling brook.
    But I: ‘The sun hath slipt behind the hill,
    And my Aunt Vivian dines at half-past six.’
    So in all love we parted; I to the Hall;
    They to the village. It was noised next noon
    That chickens had been missed at Syllabub Farm.

We had noted down several other examples of parody by different
authors, which might have served further to illustrate our subject. Our
selections have necessarily lost something of force and pertinence,
from the fragmentary condition in which we have been obliged to present
them; but the reader, if he be sufficiently interested in the matter,
may easily go to the original sources.

It needs not to be pointed out that there are limits to parody, as to
all other forms of light and sportive literature, whose main object is,
after all, to divert and amuse. Good taste should guide the course of
parody, in fact should never be absent from it. Let the parodist hit as
hard as he pleases, but let him deal no foul blow, nor aim his strokes
at aught that tradition and the world’s verdict have made sacred
and to be revered. Parody may be as clever, laughable, and amusing
as you can make it; but it should always be good-natured, fair, and
gentlemanly.



TWO DAYS IN A LIFETIME.

A STORY IN EIGHT CHAPTERS.

BY T. W. SPEIGHT.


CHAPTER V.

After his rebuff by Lady Dimsdale, the Baronet made up his mind to
set off home as soon as possible. He was stung as he had rarely been
stung in his life before, and was in no humour for the company of any
one. But before he could get away, an almost incredible rumour reached
his ears that Mr Boyd’s long-lost wife had unexpectedly appeared at
Rosemount. This was enough to induce Sir Frederick to change his plans,
especially when backed up by the Captain’s pressing invitation to stay
for dinner, for who could tell what unexpected turn events might now
take? So he sent his groom in the dogcart to fetch his dress clothes,
and made up his mind to remain where he was till the following morning.

Sir Frederick had easily discovered, by questioning one of the
servants, in which particular room Mr Boyd and his wife had located
themselves. It was the room next the library. So into the library
went Sir Frederick, on the pretext of having some letters to write,
and there he sat with the door a little way open—waiting. A certain
strange idea was fermenting in his brain, which he could not get rid of
till he had satisfied himself whether it had any foundation in fact or
otherwise. The moment he saw Boyd pass the library door, he knew that
the opportunity for which he had been waiting had come.

Sir Frederick advanced a step or two, and looked round, as if in search
of some one. ‘Pardon my intrusion,’ he said with a bow; ‘but—Mr Boyd—is
he not here?’

‘Mr Boyd has left the room for a few minutes. He will be back
presently.’

The Baronet gave a well-simulated start at the first sound of Mrs
Boyd’s voice. Then he seemed to regard her attentively for a moment
or two, with his head a little on one side. ‘Pardon me,’ he said with
a half-smile of inquiry, ‘but have I not the honour of addressing Mrs
Boyd?’

At this question she seemed to freeze suddenly. Her eyes traversed him
from head to foot before she answered him; then in cold clear tones she
said: ‘I am the wife of Oscar Boyd.’

‘I thought I could not be mistaken,’ replied the Baronet, with his most
insinuating smile.—‘I am Sir Frederick Pinkerton. But it is so long
since I had the pleasure of seeing you last, that in all probability
you have quite forgotten me.’

There was something about him that had evidently aroused her
suspicions. She was at a loss to know what ground to take with him.
‘Yes—I cannot quite call you to mind,’ she said hesitatingly, after a
little pause. ‘And yet? No. Tell me where I have seen you before.’

‘At New Orleans.’

‘Ha! I have not been at New Orleans for many years.’

‘I met you on two or three occasions in society, a few months after
your marriage.’

‘Yes—I think I remember you now. But it is a long time ago, monsieur,
and I was introduced to so many people about that time.’

‘I entertain a very distinct recollection of you, madam.’

‘I am indeed flattered, monsieur.’ She smiled a little set smile, which
came and went as if it were produced by clockwork. She was evidently
far from being at her ease.

‘Your unexpected appearance must have been a great surprise to Mr
Boyd—a surprise and a pleasure in one. The return of a wife whom he
believed to have been lost to him for ever several years ago! What a
unique experience!’

‘An experience, monsieur, which very few husbands, I am afraid, would
care to have brought home to themselves. You have an English proverb,
“Out of sight, out of mind.” That is a very true proverb.’

‘Fie, fie! Mrs Boyd. You must not be so severe on us poor men. We are
not all alike. Take your own case as an instance. You come back, from
the tomb as it were, after I know not how many years, and find your
husband still faithful to your memory.—Ah no; you must not malign us
all.’

Was he mocking her, or what, this smiling, smooth-faced man? She was
becoming more vaguely uneasy every minute, she scarcely knew why.

‘The sight of you this morning, Mrs Boyd,’ resumed the Baronet,
‘brings to my memory a certain little incident which I had all but
forgotten. In those days, I was something of a traveller. About a
year subsequently to my introduction to you, madam, I found myself in
Mexico.’

Mrs Boyd could not repress a start, but she did not speak.

‘While there, singular to say, I made the acquaintance of a certain
relative of yours, who inquired most particularly concerning your
welfare.’

Mrs Boyd’s face might have been seen to pale even under its artificial
colouring. She steadied her voice by an effort. ‘Of a relation of mine,
monsieur! May I ask his name?’

‘Don Diego Riaz.’ He pronounced the name slowly, looking fixedly at her
the while.

‘Ha!’ She fell back a step, as if some one had aimed a blow at her, and
then one hand went up quickly to her heart. Both hatred and fear shone
out of the eyes with which she stared at him.

‘By heavens! I have hit the mark,’ said the Baronet to himself.

‘Who can this man be? How much does he know?’ was her unspoken thought.

‘I am afraid you are ill, Mrs Boyd,’ remarked the Baronet.

‘A spasm; a mere nothing,’ she answered.—‘To return to what you were
saying. I have neither seen nor heard anything of Don Diego Riaz for
many years, and I hope neither to see nor hear anything of him in time
to come. There was no love lost between him and me.’

‘His was a singular character, and strange tales were told of him. For
instance, it was whispered that on one occasion when a certain member
of his family left home without his knowledge or consent, he’——

‘Spare me the recital, I pray of you. The mere mention of that man’s
name is hateful to me! utterly hateful!’ Her voice was charged with
passion, her black eyes seemed to strike fire. She walked across to the
window and then came back again.

Sir Frederick felt that he had pursued the topic as far as it was safe
to do so. ‘’Tis she; I can no longer doubt,’ he murmured to himself. ‘I
have not forgotten what I was told in Mexico.’

‘How much or how little does this man know?’ Estelle kept asking
herself. She was seriously uneasy.

‘Do you purpose making a long stay in England, Mrs Boyd?’ asked the
Baronet in his most matter-of-fact tone.

‘I think not, Sir Frederick. My husband talks about sailing for South
America in a few days. He has lost nearly the whole of his fortune.
_N’est ce pas?_’

‘I believe so. I was prodigiously sorry to hear of it.—Do you accompany
your husband abroad, Mrs Boyd?’

‘Monsieur! Is it not a wife’s duty to accompany her husband anywhere
and everywhere? And consider for how many years Oscar and I have been
separated! He would not leave me behind him for the world.’

‘Yours must be a romantic story, Mrs Boyd. I hope we shall have the
pleasure of hearing from your lips some particulars of your marvellous
escape.’

At this moment Mrs Bowood entered the room. She could contain herself
no longer. What was Mr Boyd about, that he did not at once introduce
his wife to herself and the Captain? Then she was dying to apologise
for her mistake of the morning; besides which, her sense of hospitality
was outraged by the fact that Mrs Boyd had been all this time in the
house without having been shown to her rooms or asked to partake of
refreshments of any kind. Such a state of affairs must be put an end to
forthwith.

Mrs Bowood came forward with her most genial smile. ‘I am come to
apologise for my absurd mistake of this morning, though it was partly
your own fault, my dear Mrs Boyd.’ She had hold of both Estelle’s hands
by this time. ‘How do you do? How do you do? Allow me to welcome you
to Rosemount.—Ah, Sir Frederick, you here?’ This was said with some
surprise.

‘I had the honour of making Mrs Boyd’s acquaintance several years ago.’

‘Wonders will never cease.’ Then turning to Estelle, she went on: ‘Only
to think that I mistook you for a French governess! But you ought to
have let me know at first who you were, and then matters would have
been set right at once.’

‘I wanted to surprise my husband,’ answered Estelle, with downcast
eyes. ‘I wanted to see whether he would know me again, after so long a
time.’

‘As if he could help knowing you and he your husband! I can imagine how
overjoyed he must have been to see you again.’

‘_Cher_ Oscar! He was distracted with joy. He could scarcely speak to
me at first for emotion.’

Sir Frederick smiled cynically, but did not speak.

‘No chance for Laura now,’ said Mrs Bowood to herself. ‘How fortunate
this woman did not come a day later.’

Mrs Bowood had left the room-door wide open, and at this juncture her
eye caught sight of Lady Dimsdale, who was passing along the corridor
on her way to the side-door that opened into the grounds. ‘Laura,
Laura! come here,’ she called. ‘I want to introduce you to Mrs Boyd.’

‘The woman he kissed!’ muttered Estelle between her teeth.

‘Checkmate for my Lady Disdain,’ remarked Sir Frederick to himself with
a shrug.

Lady Dimsdale hearing herself called by name turned back, and entered
the room. She looked a little paler than ordinary, but was perfectly
composed. Going straight up to Estelle, she held out her hand. ‘Mrs
Boyd and I have met already,’ she said in her most matter-of-fact tone.

‘Ah, _oui_,’ answered Estelle with a shrug, as she took the proffered
hand for a moment and then let it drop.

‘Met before!’ exclaimed Mrs Bowood in amazement.

‘A couple of hours ago,’ said Lady Dimsdale.

‘For one minute only,’ explained Estelle.

‘Then I must introduce you.—This is Lady Dimsdale, one of my dearest
friends.—Laura—Mrs Boyd.’

‘I am enchanted to make the acquaintance of Lady Dimsdale.’

‘’Tis a pity Lady D. cannot return the compliment,’ muttered Sir
Frederick to himself.

Mrs Bowood turned to him. ‘By-the-bye, Sir Frederick, have you seen the
Captain since luncheon?’ With that the two crossed over to the window
and began to talk together.

‘Mrs Boyd, I feel that some explanation is due to you,’ said Lady
Dimsdale in a low voice to the other.

‘I have not asked for any explanation, Lady Dimsdale.’

‘I repeat that one is due to you.’

‘As you please,’ answered the other, with a little lifting of her
shoulders; and with that she sat down and yawned unmistakably behind
her handkerchief.

‘Mr Boyd and I were acquainted many years ago, before he went abroad,’
began Lady Dimsdale. ‘He was a frequent visitor at my father’s
vicarage. After he went away, I never saw him again till yesterday.
This morning, fully believing that you had been dead for many years, he
asked me to become his wife.’

‘You did not say No,’ sneered Estelle.

‘At that moment you entered the room.’

‘It was very bad taste on my part, I confess. Had I known how you were
engaged, I would have waited five minutes longer.’

‘With all my heart, I wish that you had come an hour sooner!’

‘I told you that I did not require any explanation. Now that you have
chosen to press one on me, what is the value of it? _Absolument rien!_
The world is wide, and one kiss more or less is of little consequence.’
She rose, and crossed to the table and opened a book of photographs.

‘And that woman is Oscar Boyd’s wife!’ said Lady Dimsdale to herself as
she looked after her. Her heart was very, very bitter.

Mrs Bowood turned as Estelle crossed to the table. ‘I am afraid you
will think us all very inhospitable, Mrs Boyd,’ she said; ‘but it is
your husband’s fault that you did not come in to luncheon. However, a
tray will be ready for you in a few minutes. By-the-bye, has any one
shown you your rooms?’

‘My rooms, madame! We—that is, my husband and I—are going to London by
the next train. At least, that is what Oscar says.’

‘Going away by the next train! Mr Boyd had promised to stay a week, and
why need he go away because you have arrived?’

‘I only know, madame, that he told me he was going away.’

‘That will never do. I must talk to him; and Captain Bowood must talk
to him; and you, Lady Dimsdale, and you, Sir Frederick, must add
your persuasions to ours to induce Mr Boyd not to run away from us
in this sudden fashion. Next week we have two picnics and an archery
meeting—and Mrs Boyd has been so long away from England!’

‘I am sure Mr Boyd can’t be hard-hearted enough to resist all our
entreaties,’ said the Baronet. ‘The influence of Lady Dimsdale alone
might’——

‘You rate my influence too highly, Sir Frederick,’ interrupted Laura
hastily, while a warm flush mounted to her cheek. ‘In a matter like
this, Mr Boyd probably knows his own business better than any one.’

The Baronet, in nowise disconcerted, turned to Estelle: ‘To run away
from us so soon would be cruel indeed.’ Then to Mrs Bowood: ‘I am sure
we are all anxious for the pleasure of Mrs Boyd’s further acquaintance.
We want to know her better—we want to hear the story of her adventures,
of her wonderful escape from shipwreck.’

‘A dangerous man this—I hate him!’ muttered Estelle between her teeth.

‘Yes—of course—the story of the shipwreck,’ cried impulsive Mrs Bowood.
‘I had forgotten that for the moment. We are all dying to hear it.’

Estelle’s eyes were on Lady Dimsdale. ‘The woman he kissed says
nothing,’ was her unspoken comment. Then turning to Mrs Bowood,
she said: ‘The shipwreck? O yes, I will tell you all about the
shipwreck—but not to-day. I am a little tired.’

‘I am sure you must be, and hungry too. We have all been very remiss,’
replied the mistress of Rosemount. Then putting her arm into that of
Estelle, she added: ‘But your tray will be ready by this time, and Mr
Boyd must join you when he comes down. Meanwhile, I want to introduce
you to Captain Bowood.—Laura, dear, you are coming?’

‘I will join you in a few minutes,’ was Lady Dimsdale’s reply. She
wanted to be alone.

Mrs Bowood and Estelle quitted the room together. Sir Frederick
lingered behind for a moment.

‘What a happy man our friend Boyd must be to-day.—Don’t you think so,
dear Lady Dimsdale?’ he said with a smirk.

‘Very happy, Sir Frederick,’ answered Laura, looking him steadily in
the eyes. ‘Who can doubt it?’

‘Lucky dog! lucky dog!’ ejaculated the Baronet as he followed the other
ladies from the room.

Lady Dimsdale sank into an easy-chair. ‘His wife! His wife!’ How the
words kept ringing in her brain. ‘Thank heaven she came at the moment
she did, and not five minutes later! And yet if she had come an hour
sooner, that would have been better still. Would it? I don’t know. I
cannot tell. His words were so sweet to me! Did I answer him? No. He
looked into my eyes and read his answer there. And now I must never see
him or think of him more! Oh, my darling—the love of my girlhood—the
only love of my life—it is hard to bear, hard to bear!’ She felt as if
her heart were surcharged with tears; they glistened in her eyes.

At this moment Oscar Boyd entered the room. He gave a little start
when he saw who was in it. He had not expected to find her there. From
the head of the staircase, just as he was on the point of coming down,
he had seen his wife and Mrs Bowood enter the dining-room, and he
guessed what had happened during his absence. The hard set look on his
pale face softened inexpressibly as his eyes rested on Lady Dimsdale.
‘Laura!’ he said, pausing for an instant with the handle of the door in
his hand.

She neither looked up nor answered him; for a moment or two she was
afraid to trust either her eyes or her voice.

He shut the door, and went forward and took one of her hands. ‘Laura!’
he said again, and there was a world of tenderness in the way he
pronounced that one little word.

Then she looked up, and he saw the tears shining in her eyes. ‘Oscar!—I
may call you so for the last time—we ought to have parted without
another word.’

‘I could not have gone away without seeing you again, if only for a few
minutes.’

‘You _are_ going away?’

‘By the next train.’

‘It is better so.’

‘Laura! when I spoke to you this morning, it was in the full belief
that I was a free man—that no tie existed on earth to debar me from
saying the words I said then.’

‘I know it—I know it.’

‘The woman—my wife—whom I had every reason to believe had died long
ago, will accompany me when I leave this place. But to-morrow she and I
will part for ever. Her future will be duly cared for, and after that I
shall never see her again. Laura! you and I may never meet again after
to-day. Think of me sometimes when I am far away.’

‘Always—always.’

‘O heavens, when I think how happy we might have been! And now!’ Strong
man though he was, it was all he could do to keep himself from breaking
down. He was possessed by an almost irresistible impulse to fling his
arms round her and press her passionately to his heart.

Love’s fine instinct told Laura something of what was passing in his
breast. She stood up and laid one hand softly on his arm. ‘You had
better go now,’ she said very gently. ‘No more words are needed between
you and me. We know what we know, and no one can deprive us of that
knowledge.’

He felt the wisdom of her words. To delay that which was inevitable was
merely to prolong her misery and his own. Besides, his wife might enter
the room at any moment. And yet—and yet it was so hard to have his
treasure torn from him at the very moment he had made it his own!

Laura had a rose in the bosom of her dress. She took it out and fixed
it in his button-hole. ‘Now go. Not another word,’ she whispered.

‘I shall write to you once before I sail,’ he said.

‘No—no; better not.’

He did not dispute the point, but took each of her hands in one of his.
For the space of a few seconds they stood heart to heart, as it were,
gazing into each other’s eyes. Then Oscar lifted first one hand and
then the other, and pressed them to his lips with a sort of reverent
passionate tenderness. ‘Farewell, my darling, farewell!’

The words struck a chill to her heart. They were the last anguished cry
of love and happiness lost for ever.



GLIMPSES OF THE SCOT ABROAD.


A few years ago, I was what is called a ‘globe-trotter,’ by which
title, as the reader knows, is meant that distinctively modern
personage—the world-tourist. He is the creation of the steamboat
and the rail, and of all the Ariel-like capabilities due to recent
discoveries and improvements in locomotion by land and sea. The term
globe-trotter is suggestive. One conjures up a traveller, knapsack on
back, poking his nose into the Himalayas, sauntering across Sahara,
brushing past the Pyramids, leaving his card at Calcutta, scampering
over the American prairie, lunching at Rome, and dropping in to see the
Seven Churches of Asia. The voyager of to-day can buttonhole Old Father
Time, and be on familiar terms with his primal relative Space. It was
thus that in the course of two or three years I was fortunate enough to
visit most of the embryo kingdoms which make up our colonial empire,
as well as Britain’s great dependency in the East. As need scarcely be
said, I boasted a note-book, for what traveller of this era is without
one, wherewith on his return to publish Passages, Reminiscences,
Fly-leaves, or Jottings of his unique wanderings? From the memoranda
made during this tour round the world, I have compiled several
incidents connected with the Scot abroad. These pretend to be nothing
more than ripples on the current of colonial life, giving slight hints
as to moods and bearing of the Scot abroad, in the varying scenes of
his exile.

It is a truism to say that Scotsmen are to be found in every corner of
the habitable globe. As I once heard a Melbourne Englishman remark: ‘If
there were no Scotchmen, what would the world do for bank-managers?’
They have been noted as enterprising emigrants, and, in a large number
of cases, successful colonists. I met with few instances of Scotchmen
complaining in respect of their material welfare. One man in Queensland
had a somewhat unique grievance, which, however, he set forth with a
twinkle in the eye: ‘There’s the government spendin’ pounds upon pounds
in bringin’ oot folk to this country, while here’s me wi’ fifteen
bairns, maistly a’ born here, an’ I’ve never got a penny for ony o’
them!’

Otago is perhaps the most Scottish of any portion of the colonial
empire, though Ontario runs it very close. Dunedin is almost undiluted
in its Scottish nationality, and is a city of considerable stir.
Sabbatarian questions, as well as the question of instrumental music
in the church, are warmly discussed in Otago. At a certain gathering
of Presbyterian clergymen, one of them urged that organs should be
introduced in order to draw more young people to the church; upon which
an old minister remarked that this was acting on the principle of ‘O
whistle, an’ I’ll come to ye, my lad!’ The Scot abroad has a great
love for the institutions of his native country, and endeavours to
transplant as many of them as circumstances will allow. Even the winter
weather of Scotland induces kindly recollections in the breasts of old
settlers. I remember, after a phenomenal fall of snow in Dunedin, the
like of which had not been seen for twenty years, an elder of the kirk
exclaiming, as he rubbed his hands: ‘Sic glorious snaw-ba’ fechts we
had—it mindit me o’ langsyne! Man, I was sorry when the thaw cam’ on.’
Caledonian Societies flourish all over New Zealand as much as does the
thistle itself. On the Thames gold-field, in the province of Auckland,
there was a corps of Highland Volunteers. Whenever they marched through
the town, they were invariably followed by numbers of Maories, who
tied blankets round their waists, like kilts, and no doubt imagined
themselves sufficiently Celtic.

The national dishes are much in vogue in New Zealand. An English lady
in Wellington, the capital of that colony, on one occasion detailed
how she had tried to make a haggis in order to please her husband, who
hailed from north of the Tweed. With the help of a cookery-book, the
numerous ingredients were collected and prepared, and at last inserted
in a big pot. Alas! the haggis would not sink, despite renewed efforts.
The lady, in despair, called in an experienced neighbour, who pierced
the haggis with a fork, and successfully ‘scuttled’ it. I am sorry to
add that after all the wife’s trouble and anxiety, the dish proved a
total failure. It is to be hoped that her husband was not so difficult
to please as the well-to-do tradesman in Auckland, who grumbled sorely
as to New Zealand ‘not being fit for a Scotsman to live in.’ ‘How’s
that?’ ‘Weel, the fact is I—I—canna get my parritch made to please
me!’ Talking of porridge, the dish was a favourite in the Christchurch
Hotel, province of Canterbury, where it was cooked by a Frenchman who
now and again actually spoke broken Scotch with a Parisian accent;
while at Wanganui, in the North Island, the ‘parritch’ was prepared by
a Chinese cook.

To say that Scotsmen abroad are still fond of their national music
is simply to say that they do not cease to be Scotsmen. If anything,
the fondness becomes intensified. I once heard an enthusiast in South
Africa observe: ‘_My Ain Fireside_—_Ye Banks and Braes_—_The Land
o’ the Leal_—eh! a body could be fit to gang to heaven hearing thae
sangs sung!’ At a mission-school connected with the Scotch Church in
Cape Town I once listened to _Weel may the Boatie row_, sung as a
duet by a Dutch girl and a Malay, a result attained by the enthusiasm
of the Scottish schoolmaster. It seemed to me as incongruous as
hearing the Old Hundred in the ‘Scots Kirk’ of Calcutta, unwittingly
accompanied by the tom-toms of a Hindu festival transpiring in the
street. Now that I have taken the reader so far as India, let me note
also that in the Church of Scotland College at Calcutta I saw an
advanced class of Bengali youths reading Scott’s _Lady of the Lake_
and making marginal notes. Returning to Australia, a pleasant memory
is that of an afternoon spent in a school at Sandhurst, the aforetime
‘Bendigo.’ Here, after the ordinary class-duties had been performed,
the scholars were initiated into the mysteries of Highland reels and
strathspeys, under the tutorship of an Aberdonian dame, the Aberdonian
schoolmaster accompanying on the fiddle. I recollect, too, how an
Irish grocer in Adelaide, South Australia, was moved to stand outside
his door in the bright moonlight evenings and play _Monymusk_ on a
tin whistle. A vision of Canada now rises before me, with its host of
local bards, each with his wallet of poems on his back, trudging from
village to village—the troubadours of the backwoods. Their warblings
were not of the snow-laden forest, the subdued glory of the Indian
summer, the autumn-gilded maple, or the swift, miraculous dawn of
the Columbian spring. Their strains were those of exile; strains of
Scotia, of ‘hame,’ of rippling burnies, of the purple heather, of the
thousand-and-one historic and sympathetic memories of the dear old
land. But hark! what sounds do we hear echoing from a Sabbath school in
Sacramento, California? Scottish tunes, but linked to religious words,
the children singing a hymn of the church militant to the melody of
_Scots wha hae_; while _Ye Banks and Braes_ served as the tender medium
for stanzas of a more devotional character.

The farmer is a notable figure in one’s Canadian remembrances, the
agricultural class comprising about half the population. In Ontario
you will find many old Scotch settlers, and much could be written upon
their present and past experiences. The times are considerably altered
from the days when the rough pioneering work had to be done. I once met
two aged farmers, one of whom had seen eighty-three winters, who had
emigrated to Canada together about forty years ago, and might have been
taken for typical old settlers. In telling their primitive toils and
privations, their weather-beaten faces were lit up with an animation
that was almost joyous in its character. One related, as if it were
some rare humour, that his first log-hut in the backwoods was at many
places open to the heavens, and that frequently he had to dust the snow
off his blankets before he went to bed. The wintry theme suggests the
story of a Scottish Canadian who, on a voyage to the mother-country,
was one day found sleeping on deck, when the captain roused him with a
natural caution against sunstroke. ‘Sunstroke!’ scornfully replied the
awakened one. ‘It wad tak’ a’ the sun atween here an’ Greenock to thaw
the Canada frost oot o’ my head.’

In Salt Lake City there are not a few Scottish Mormons. I chanced to
have a brief conversation there with a middle-aged Scotchwoman, who was
a follower of Brigham Young, and who did not hesitate to magnify the
virtues of polygamy. It turned out, however, that her zeal was largely
of a theoretical nature, as the good lady did not seem to believe
in the system so far as it might entail any discomfort upon herself.
At Omaha I was acquainted with a Highlander who in the first days of
Mormonism became converted to polygamy, but who ultimately abjured the
faith. Many a time and oft, in Celtic daring, had he stood on the banks
of the Missouri River, lifting up his voice in the wilderness like the
Baptist of old, denouncing Mormonism to the bands of converts as they
passed over the stream to the ostensible Land of Canaan. His life was
in daily peril, but he escaped scathless from his self-imposed mission.
In San Francisco I saw Elder Stenhouse, who had been until lately a
chief among the Utah Saints. He and his wife, both Scotch people, had
dedicated themselves honestly to the new faith, but finding out its
hollowness, they shook off the dust of the desert—there is plenty of
it—from their shoes, and took farewell of Salt Lake.

In travelling about from place to place you make acquaintance with a
most interesting type of character—that of the veteran Scotchman. In
Christchurch, New Zealand, I met a Waterloo veteran, eighty-four years
of age, yet with erect, military carriage. With vivacious garrulity
he told that he was born in Fife; that he had lodged at the house of
Mrs Grant of Laggan; that he knew ‘Jamie Hogg’ and Nathaniel Gow; that
he had been all through the Peninsular War, had fought at Waterloo,
and had been on half-pay since 1817. A companion-figure was that
of the venerable Highlander of King William’s Town, Cape Colony—a
genial-hearted man, of stern brow and with war-worn features—whose
talk was a strange blending of pleasant Scottish reminiscence and
weird stories of Kaffir campaigns in which he had taken part. Again,
while sailing up the Suez Canal, on the voyage home from India, one of
my fellow-passengers was an old Scotsman who had fought at Waterloo,
and was then engaged making a tour of the world. As he said, with
pleasant pathos: ‘I want to see all that’s to be seen before I’m happit
up in the mools’—a phrase that can only be inadequately rendered in
English as ‘lying snug beneath the sod.’ He left the steamer at Port
Saïd, as he was bound on an excursion to the Holy Land, and as the
quarter-master offered to carry his portmanteau, the old fellow elbowed
him aside, exclaiming: ‘Pooh, pooh; I’m a young man yet!’ Last and not
least notable of this class was an old and well-preserved gentleman
I met at Wellington, New Zealand. He was an Edinburgh man, and had
been educated at the university there. He had been acquainted with
friends of Burns, had known the poet’s ‘Chloris’ and ‘Clarinda,’ and
in speaking of the Potterrow always seemed to regard it as still a
fashionable street. To gossip with him was like shaking hands with the
past.

In going round the world, one is sure to find relatives and souvenirs
of famous men and women. At Hobart-Town, Tasmania, there resided,
when I visited the town, the granddaughter of Neil Gow and daughter
of Nathaniel Gow, the composer of _Caller Herrin’_. In the Waikato
district of the North Island of New Zealand, about a hundred miles
from the city of Auckland, lives, I still trust, old Mrs Nicol, mother
of the late Robert Nicol, the celebrated Perthshire poet. During a
stormy passage in a small steamer on the New Zealand coast, I had some
interesting chats with an Irish gentleman who had met and talked with
Sir Walter Scott in a chapel in Italy, during the closing scenes of
that busy life. I may add also that at Listowel, in Ontario, I was
privileged to meet the brother of Dr Livingstone, and was much struck
with the facial resemblance between him and the great traveller. In the
University of Dunedin the visitor can see, in a gilt frame, a lock of
Burns’s hair, labelled ‘A genuine relic of the Poet, and modicum of a
larger lock owned by Jean Armour.’ A certain country hotel in Tasmania
lives in my memory from its having distributed through its rooms an
extraordinary number of pictures of John Knox, the religious character
of the house being increased by the fact that one of the apartments
was used as the ‘study’ of the Presbyterian clergyman of the village.
The name of John Knox, by association, recalls to my mind the incident
of the eccentric Scot of Kaffraria, South Africa, who had a portrait
of Mary Queen of Scots hung in his bedroom, and who, every morning on
rising, stretched his hands towards it, crying: ‘O my poor murdered
queen!’

The visitor fresh from home is certain of meeting with a kind welcome
from his countrymen abroad. The welcome need not be on personal
grounds. An Edinburgh man in Canada once shook my hand warmly, saying:
‘I dinna ken ye; I never met ye before; but I just want to see a man
that’s seen Arthur Seat since I saw it.’ The love of home sometimes
reaches an intense pitch, as in the case of the Scotsman at Fort
Beaufort, in Cape Colony, who ejaculated: ‘I’d rather gang hame and
be hanged, than dee here a natural death!’ Again, an old man in New
Zealand remarked: ‘I doot I’ll no get hame to Scotland again; but if
onybody said: “Ye shall not go,” I’d be off the morn’s mornin’!’ With
which forcible yet touching deliverance let these glimpses conclude.

I am afraid that during our brief bird’s-eye view of colonial life,
the reader has been dragged hither and thither in a somewhat erratic
course. The irregularity, however, has been more apparent than real.
Whether amid Canadian snows, New Zealand mountains, Australian bush,
or South African _veldt_, you meet with the same shrewd, persevering
Scotsman, steadily moving in his colonial orbit, and moving none the
less regularly because of the tender gravitation of his heart towards
the central sphere of patriotic affection—dear though distant Scotland.



IS SMOKING INJURIOUS TO HEALTH?


Although the above important question is so frequently asked, more
especially of medical men, yet their replies are as a general rule
either of a vague or dogmatic nature that is anything but satisfactory.
There has been unlimited discussion respecting the injurious effects of
smoking, ever since the first introduction of tobacco, and a great deal
of nonsense has unfortunately been urged by enthusiasts on both sides.
Some have praised tobacco far beyond its merits; while others have so
enlarged upon its injurious and poisonous qualities as to make one
wonder that anybody who smokes should be left alive at all. Hitherto,
however, no satisfactory solution of the problem appears to have been
arrived at. Our object in this paper will be to deal as concisely as
possible with the subject upon its merits.

In the first place, we may inform our readers that smoking is and is
not injurious. This apparently contradictory assertion admits, however,
of the following explanation. In New England, it has been with truth
alleged that the thirst induced by smoking is an active incentive to
alcoholic excess and its attendant evils. Now, on the other hand,
amongst Asiatic nations the reverse holds good. Mr Lane—translator of
the _Arabian Nights_—when in the East, noticed that smoking appeared
to possess a soothing effect, attended with slight exhilaration, and
that it supplied the place of alcoholic beverages. Mr Layard, whose
knowledge of eastern nations is most extensive, was also of the same
opinion. Mr Crawford, again, an authority of high repute as regards
Asiatic habits, believes the use of tobacco has contributed to the
sobriety both of Asiatic and European nations. Here we have two
entirely contradictory results, as, in North America smoking produces
dissipation; whilst in the East it not only restrains, but takes its
place. It is therefore to climate, temperament, and bodily constitution
acting and reacting upon each other, that we may trace so opposite an
effect.

The chemical constituents of tobacco are three, the due consideration
of which is highly important. They are: (1) A volatile oil; (2) a
volatile alkali; (3) an empyreumatic oil. The volatile oil, although
in minute quantities, has a most powerful action on the physical
system, even in the smallest dose; and when taken internally, gives
rise to nausea with giddiness. The volatile alkali is _nicotine_,
possessing narcotic and very poisonous qualities; so much so indeed,
that a single drop of it is sufficient to kill a dog. The proportion
of this substance in the dry tobacco-leaf varies from two to eight per
cent., according to Professor Johnston, who states that ‘in smoking
a quarter of an ounce of tobacco, two grains or more of one of the
most subtle poisons known may be drawn into the smoker’s mouth;’ the
reason why he is not poisoned being because this deadly juice is not
concentrated. Empyreumatic oil (from Gr. _empyreuo_, I kindle), the
third active ingredient of tobacco, is so called to express the burned
smell and acrid taste which result from the combustion of the tobacco
during smoking. This oil closely resembles in its action that which is
produced from poisonous foxglove leaf (_Digitalis purpurea_). A drop
of empyreumatic oil when applied to the tongue of a cat has produced
convulsions and death in a few minutes. Reptiles are destroyed by it
as through an electric shock. It must be borne in mind that these
three chemical ingredients are _united_ when smoking, and produce to a
greater or less degree their respective effects. A cigar when smoked
to the _end_ effectually discharges into the smoker’s mouth everything
produced by its combustion. When saliva is retained in the mouth, the
effects of tobacco in one sense become more markedly developed on the
nervous system. On the other hand, when constant expectoration takes
place, digestion becomes impaired, from the diminution of saliva,
which plays an important part in this function. We have heard medical
men, who were themselves smokers, aver that the former is the least
of the two evils; which we hope is the case, as the habit of constant
expectoration in which many smokers indulge, is certainly one of the
most unpleasant concomitants of the pipe or cigar.

In a purely physiological sense, smoking acts as follows: (1) The
heart’s action becomes lowered; (2) the elimination of carbonic acid is
diminished, thus interfering with the respiratory power; (3) the waste
of the body is checked, and digestion to a certain extent impeded.
Excessive smoking disorders digestion, and, where the heart is weak,
often induces disease of that organ. It is by no means uncommon to find
habitual smokers troubled with dyspepsia. Dr Leared considers excessive
smoking decidedly productive of indigestion. Dr Pereira, who was a high
authority on such matters, when alluding to habitual smokers in his
celebrated _Materia Medica_, observes: ‘The practice, when moderately
indulged in, provokes thirst, increases the secretion of saliva, and
produces that remarkably soothing and tranquillising effect upon the
mind which has caused it to be so much admired and adopted by all
classes of society, and by all nations civilised and barbarous.’ Later
on, the same eminent authority states that ‘when indulged in to excess,
and especially by those unaccustomed to its use, smoking causes nausea,
trembling, and in some cases paralysis and death.’ Instances are
recorded of persons killing themselves by smoking seventeen or eighteen
pipes at a sitting!

In his luminous _Treatise on Poisons_, Dr Christison states that
‘no well-ascertained ill effects have been shown to result from the
habitual practice of smoking.’ On the other hand, Dr Prout, a late
distinguished physician and chemist, was of a different opinion. He
observes: ‘Tobacco disorders the assimilating functions in general, but
particularly, I believe, the assimilation of saccharine principle. It
is the weak and those predisposed to disease who fall victims to its
poisonous operation, whilst the strong and healthy suffer comparatively
little therefrom.’ So even this learned physician’s opinion is to a
certain extent thus modified.

The researches of Dr Richardson, F.R.S., are of immense value with
regard to the action of tobacco upon the health. He is of opinion that
there are no grounds for believing that smoking—of course, we infer,
when indulged in with moderation—can produce organic change. Functional
disturbances of the heart, brain, and vision, he tells us, may be
traced to its excessive use. It is universally, however, admitted that
tobacco, like alcohol—in minute doses—arrests oxidation of living
tissues, thus checking their disintegration. Dr Richardson, for this
reason, justly considers smoking highly injurious to the young, causing
impairment of growth.

In the course of an important discussion which took place between Sir
Ranald Martin, Mr Solly, Dr Ranking, and other scientific physicians,
the following important results were arrived at respecting smoking: (1)
That the habit is only prejudicial when carried to excess; (2) that
tobacco is innocuous as compared with alcohol, and in no case worse
than tea, and by the side of high living, contrasts most favourably.
Whether smoking is or is not injurious to health depends principally
upon the following conditions: (1) The kind of tobacco smoked; (2) the
manner in which it is consumed; (3) the amount of tobacco smoked; and
lastly, when it is indulged in. The great object is to obtain a tobacco
which possesses the smallest percentage of nicotine. It was formerly
believed that the best varieties of Havana and Turkish tobacco were the
most innocuous. According, however, to the recent exhaustive researches
of Dr George Harley, F.R.S., it appears that the more delicate the
aroma of tobacco, the more poisonous it becomes. Dr Harley is also
of opinion that ‘Caporal’ tobacco contains _least nicotine_, and is
consequently to be preferred by those desirous of health. Pipes made
of clay, and meerschaums—not foul—are, Dr Richardson considers, in a
hygienic point of view, superior to cigars and cigarettes. Neither
cigars nor cigarettes should ever be smoked near the end, as the
nicotine then is discharged into the mouth in larger proportions. M.
Melsens, a very distinguished chemist, is of opinion that a plug of
cotton-wool saturated with a solution of strong citric or tannic acid
should be inserted in the stem of the pipe, cigar, or cigarette holder.
By this precaution, the smoke is effectually filtered, ere reaching the
mouth, as the nicotine would then be seized by and combined with the
acid. Those who object to this plan on account of its trouble, might
with advantage place a small piece of plain cotton-wool in the stem
of their pipe as a filtering agent. This should on each occasion be
removed and replaced by a fresh one. A more convenient, and probably
not less effective plug, is a bit of paper crumpled into a soft ball
and placed in the bottom of the pipe. It acts as an absorbent of the
objectionable juices which might otherwise find their way into the
mouth, and can be changed, if the smoker chooses, every time he fills
his pipe.

From a review of the scientific testimony and physiological facts
bearing upon this subject, we may safely arrive at the following
conclusions: (1) That smoking in excess is decidedly an injurious
habit, frequently causing dyspepsia, and functional diseases of the
heart, brain, and nervous system. (2) That smoking, even when in
moderation, is pernicious in early life, also to certain constitutions,
and in particular conditions of the body. (3) That in adult life and in
ordinary health, no well-ascertained ill effects have been demonstrated
as owing their causation to _moderate_ smoking. (4) That the _moderate_
use of tobacco is not only in many cases a harmless luxury, but
occasionally, from its soothing and tranquillising influence, a useful
adjunct. Smoking, even in the strictest moderation, with some persons
of peculiar idiosyncrasies, acts as a poison, and should therefore be
avoided, when feelings of discomfort are entailed by its use.

It is impossible to lay down any rule as to the amount of tobacco which
may be consumed without a deleterious effect upon the health. What
would be moderation to one is often excess to another, according to
temperament, habit, and individual peculiarities. Each person ought to
be able to judge for himself as to what is moderation. The best time
for smoking is undoubtedly after a meal; and the most injurious, on an
empty stomach.

In drawing this paper to a close, we cannot do better than by appending
the following extract, taken from Mr Dawson’s valuable little work on
longevity. On page sixty-nine of _How to Prolong Life_, when speaking
of smoking, Mr Dawson observes: ‘All things taken into account, it
is evident that tobacco in excess is certainly prejudicial to good
health; in moderation, however, it may be indulged in with comparative
impunity; but under any circumstances, it should be known that a man
in health is much better without it. How much more so in the case of
those who are weakly! Lastly, I desire to impress upon all smokers that
_moderation_ in this habit is of no small moment, the ill effects being
proportioned to indulgence.’



TO A CHILD.


    Kathleen of the glad blue eyes,
       Elf-locks dark and curling—
    Kathleen of the laughing voice,
      Like a wild stream whirling:
    When I gaze into those eyes,
      Deep I read the story
    Of a long-lost Paradise
      And the young world’s glory.

    Many a tale of fairyland
      Have we dreamed together,
    By the hearth in shadow-time,
      Out on wind-swept heather.
    Tired, I told of prince and fay,
      Court and castle hoary;
    Give me, sweet, my turn to-day—
      I, too, crave a story.

    Blue eyes telling tales to mine
      Darkly raise their fringes:
    Earth had doors to heaven once,
      Wide on golden hinges.
    From beyond, the timeless light
      Banished time and sorrow;
    Child-world had no yesterday,
      Heaven was to-morrow.

    Nought was there of languid bloom,
      Frail and fevered splendour,
    Kisses like the daisies thronged,
      Love made greensward tender,
    Truth was sunny as the sky,
      Branching care spread o’er us,
    All that warbled ecstasy
      Made the garden’s chorus.

    O thou Eden of the past—
      If I could but find thee,
    All I have, for thee, I’d cast,
      Worthless, vain, behind me—
    When the heaven-gates stood wide,
      And all the air was ringing
    With mingled voices of our home
      And sound of angels singing!

    Am I sad? How startled shine
      Those blue eyes in wonder!
    Child, whose heart beats close to mine,
      Far are we asunder.
    Yet, if I would follow thee,
      Oft I marvel whether
    Thou couldst lead me in, to see
      Eden-land together.

            M. E. ATTERIDGE.

       *       *       *       *       *

Printed and Published by W. & R. CHAMBERS, 47 Paternoster Row, LONDON,
and 339 High Street, EDINBURGH.

       *       *       *       *       *

_All Rights Reserved._



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