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pleasant turf lying in cool shadow beneath large beautiful trees, she told me she remembered when there were only seven trees in the whole valley; and how she herself began to make the very first garden at Honolulu, by preparing a tiny plot before the window of her own bare wooden house, and there attempting to strike some geranium cuttings--an attempt much discouraged by her husband, who assured her that it was hopeless to think of making anything grow on such soil. The young wife was not easily daunted, however. She persevered till her garden was a source of amazement to her few neighbours, who of course followed her good example. Now she lives to see that region of fine cinders converted into a flourishing town, where hundreds of happy homes are embowered in beautiful flowers, and shaded by tall trees of many different species, all growing so naturally that strangers 'on arriving here suppose them to be the spontaneous vegetation of these lavish tropics. —Fire Fountains. By C. F. Gordon Cumming. (Blackwood.)
Charity Organisation Work.-Since the last annual report of the Charity Organisation Society, 499 cases have been dealt with, against 393 in the previous year.
Out of these, 53 had been assisted by grants, 24 by loans, 5 by letters to hospitals, one had been recommended to the guardians, 10 to local agencies or convalescent homes, and 9 to private persons ; 25 had been dismissed as unde. serving, 21 as not requiring relief, and 50 as ineligible. Twenty-four vagrants had been dealt with, and 31 cases referred to other districts. An analysis of the applications made to the society during the year showed that "labourers' were the highest on the list, their number being 38. Next followed charwomen (19), laundresses (17), needlewomen (14), murses (11), general servants (12), and clerks (9). The balance sheet, which showed the amount on hand to be only £,12 odd, made mention of grants in 52 cases, amounting to 30 45, 90., and of contributions to special cases, amounting to £52 75.
those now used, would much reduce the time occupied in the transit. The consul considers that a railway from Bagdad to Alexandretta would pay exceedingly well, and British commerce would benefit greatly, as Bagdad would become the great mart, and drive Russian goods out of the Persian and Southern Asian markets, owing to the expensive land carriage those goods would have to defray. The cost of a railway from Busreh, at the head of the Persian Gulf, to Alexandretta, on the Mediterranean, has been estimated at £7,225,000, but this is at the rate of £8,500 per mile-a high rate considering that there is water carriage from London to Bagdad for railway material. Deducting the distance from Busreh to Bagdad—which is 250 miles as the crow flies -the first expenditure would be reduced to 65,100,000 on the 600 miles from Bagdad to Alexandretta. The country between Bagdad and Mosul is a dead level. The expendi. ture on bridges would be inconsiderable. Bridging the Tigris, indeed, might be avoided if the terminus were made on the right bank of the river at Bagdad, and from thence ran straight to Aleppo, the line being flanked on one side by the Tigris and on the other by the Euphrates, and nearly the whole route a flat. The consul suggests that the civilising influences which a railway would initiate are considerable, and that the development of the country, with its vast resources and its enormous ancient system of canal irrigation, is well worthy the attention of statesmen. The privilege of navigating the Tigris from Busreh to Bagdad would have to be acquired from the Turkish Government; at present they have a few steamers of their own on the river, and are jealous of other nations entering into competition.
Chapbooks and Hornbooks.-Charles Knight, when a boy of about ten years old, found thrown aside in his father's drawer, a complete collection of the "little books for children” of Mr. Newbery, of St. Paul's Churchyard, to whom Goldsmith makes Dr. Primrose in "The Vicar of Wakefield” pay so grateful and graceful a compliment. These were mixed up, too, with hornbooks, a single copy of which is now one of the rarest relics of the olden time. Taking up a very small volume of chapbooks at the British Museum recently, we saw that the previous possessor had paid £33 for it; its present value would far exceed that sum. It had cost originally, perhaps, a shilling.
The Denial of Miracles Unscientific.—The beginning of Nature was miraculous, so also is the continuance. Professor Huxley said at the opening of Sir Josiah Mason's College, *Nature is the expression of a definite order with which nothing interferes.” Such a statement, even if true, can never be verified ; and, as it is not less opposed to science than it is disproved by fact, ought not to have been made. Nature, really, is that expression of definite, ever-progressing order in which no time and no place are without interference, and in which everything exists for the sake of something else. Nature is that sphere wherein all the visible came from the invisible into which it is returning ; the invisible ever interfering with the visible, the visible ever re-entering the invisible. Nature continues to be Nature because of this ever. lasting interference : is that domain of ceaseless and universal change which, in no two consecutive moments of time, nor in any two points of space, ever was or ever will be 'exactly the same. Every force in every atom, in every moment, acts for ever and ever along a different line of direction and through a different place in space. Instead of Nature being that with which and within which nothing interferes, it is that in which and with which everything interferes, the constitution and continuance of Nature are based upon interference.—“ The Mystery of Miracles," by Prebendary Reynolds.
Irish Agriculture and Emigration. A certain part of the population of Ireland lived under conditions which could not be realised in this country, and which were more deplorable than the conditions of any people in civilised Europe. There were 67,000 holdings between one and five acres, 64,000 between sive and fifteen acres, many of which were situate in mountainous districts, and did not afford more than two and two and a half acres of arable land. This was dug over and over again until the soil was exhausted. An acre of land yielded to the poor farmer not more than ninety cwt, of potatoes, instead of 'from six to nine tons, which was the average crop of land well farmed. The land got less and less productive, and was now totally unable to support the people. Relief
, then, would only put off the evil day, and by-and-by, when the people were again left to themselves, they would be just as badly off as they were before.
New Route to India.— The question of the Euphrates and Tigris valley railway being again before the world, the report of Consul-General Nixon, of Bagdad, is worth recalling. He states that the country is capable of unlimited development, and one of the first steps to this end would be the con. struction of a railway between Bagdad and the foot of the Persian hills, and another from Bagdad to Alexandretta vid Mosul. This would give an alternative route to India, and be more expeditious than via the Suez Canal. Swift steamers from Kurrachee would reach Busreh (1,547 miles) in six days ; from Busreh to Bagdad river steamers would run with ease in seventy-two hours, and at the outside another sixty hours by Tail would land passengers on the shores of the Mediter. ranean ; and this period of eleven and a half days is capable of acceleration. A railway from Busreh to Bagdad might be an after-consideration, as the River Tigris affords a highway which, if traversed by steamers of higher power than
State-aided Emigration. The strenuous efforts of those who desire the welfare of the masses in England should be put forth to lessen voluntary emigration and advance Stateaided emigration, so that those whom the country can easily spare may find a haven wherein they can find a field for their labour, and thereby supply the want which is felt in our colonies without in any way destroying the prestige which England has gained for superior workmanship over the world ; for there is no doubt that while a very high rate of wages continues to be offered to skilled workmen abroad, the temptation will be too great for them to stay at home, and the very men we wish to retain will leave our shores, while those whom it is our duty to assist will be left as heretofore to be a burden on the ratepayers. The question might naturally be asked, What is the use of our vast possessions in Australia, New Zealand, and Canada if we do not in some way or other assist those who are suffering at home, and who would in all probability succeed in establishing themselves in comfort in either of the places named ? Australia has six
colonies, the least of which, Victoria, is nearly equal in extent to that of England, Scotland, and Wales, while that of New South Wales has an area of about three times the size of Great Britain and Ireland, containing a population of a little over two millions. In these colonies labour only is wanted, with, of course, the necessary amount of capital—which, however, is never wanting when it can be profitably employed-to open up a sure source by which all our superfluous labour may be utilised ; and it seems to me strange that while
l such an object can be attained there should be any hesitation on the part of our Government-or, in fact, that there should be any diversity of opinion regarding this question at all. The only way in which a scheme of State-aided emigration could be successfully carried out, which would meet the wants of the penurious working classes, would be the appointment of a commission, who might appoint competent officers whose duty it would be to inquire into the affairs of those who might make application for free passages, and would be sufficiently conversant with all the facts relating to the various fields of labour open to them, so that each applicant would be forwarded a colony where his labour would be in demand. I am fully aware that many applications would be made which could not be entertained ; but, while it would not be politic to send the applicants abroad, the scheme would lessen the chance of their being without employment at home. - George Potter.
ferred with pomp on the royal followers, as almost the only rewards the king had to bestow. Men of every opinion flocked to Oxford, and many foreigners came to visit the king. There existed in the country a large and highly intelligent body of moderate men, who hovered between the two parties, and numbers of these were constantly in Oxford-Harrington the philosopher, the king's friend, Hobbes, Lord Falkland, Lord Paget, the Lord Keeper, and many others. Mixed up with these grave and studious persons, gay courtiers and gayer ladies jostled old and severe divines and college heads, and crusty tutors used the sarcasms they had been wont to hurl at their pupils to reprove ladies whose conduct appeared to them at least far from decorous. Christmas interludes were enacted in Hall, and Shakespeare's plays performed by the king's players, assisted by amateur performers : and it would have been difficult to say whether the play was performed before the curtain or behind it, or whether the actors left their parts behind them when the performance was over, or then in fact resumed them. The groves and walks of the colleges, and especially Christ Church meadow and the Grove at Trinity, were the resort of this gay and brilliant throng; the woods were vocal with song and inusic, and love and gallantry sported themselves along the pleasant river banks. The poets and wits vied with each other in classic conceits and parodies, wherein the events of the day and every individual incident were portrayed and satirised. Wit, learning, and religion joined hand in hand, as in some grotes. que and brilliant masque. The most admired poets and players and the most profound mathematicians became “Romancists” and monks, and exhausted all their wit and poetry and learning in furthering their divine mission, and finally, as the last scenes of this strange drama came on, fell fighting on some hardly-contested grassy slope, and were buried on the spot, or in the next village churchyard, in the dress in which they played Philaster, or the court garb in which they woed their mistress, or the doctor's gown in which they preached before the king, or read Greek in the schools.
John Inglesant (Macmillan).
Scottish Homes.- In the city of Glasgow alone 41 families out of every 100 families live in homes having only one room. Well, that is the official statement of the census, and further, 37 per cent. beyond the 41 dwell in homes of only two rooms. That 78 per cent., or nearly four-fifths, dwell in homes of one or two rooms, and in Scotland nearly one-third of the whole people dwell in homes of only one room. More than twothirds, or 70 per cent., of the whole people of Scotland dwell in homes with not more than one or two rooms. Scotland has been supposed to be the best-educated portion of the three kingdoms. Scotland, as you know, for you have been rather ridiculed on that ground, has been held to be remarkable for the thrist and economy of its children. Thrist, to my mind, is not a quality to be ridiculed, but a virtue to be greatly commended. Yet with all the invention of this century, with all the industry, with the extraordinary growth of wealth, with our enormous imports and experts, with all our shipping, there are these sad facts. I want to know how they are to be accounted for.-Mr. Bright at Glasgow.
Jamaica Schools.—The "grants in aid”.
--a pure payment by results—have increased from £3,000 in 1869 to $17,000 in 1879. The number of pupils has increased during the same period from 14,000 to 37,000. The number of schools has run up from 290 to 650; and the number of schools that failed to pass the inspection has fallen from 162 to 27. This marked increase in the efficiency of Government education is also seen in the fact that the first and second class schools respectively have increased from one and six to 64 and 202. One more clinching proof is the fact that while in 1869 there were 130 trained and 152 untrained teachers, yet in 1879 the trained teachers were in the large majority of 362 to 291 untrained. The results of this signal advance will become apparent at no very long date.
Primitive Man still in Remote Regions.--In “ Nordensk. jold's Voyage of the Vega," a book interesting to the general reader as well as to the scientific student, are recorded many details about the Samoyedes, which supply striking analogies with the people of prehistoric times in lands now of advanced civilisation. For instance, here is an account of one. It is a cairn of stone built up on a knoll. Among the stones are the skulls of reindeer-bones from which the marrow was ex. tracted--bits of iron, and idols of wood and stone. The idols were found to have been smeared with blood. Buried mounds are described : “In recent interments are found remains of iron pots, bows, arrows, rolled bark for lighting, and a szigh turned over. Preparations for the journey after death.” The Samoyedes in summer pasture their herds of reindeer in the north, and the Fins come to them and carry on barter, fish, and hunt. In the winter the herds are driven south. It is only in comparatively recent times that fixed dwellings have been erected. They are baptized into the orthodox faith of Russia, but worship idols at the same time. They often travel enormous distances to their heathen sacri. ficial places.
Oxford during the Civil War.-There has perhaps never existed so curious a spectacle as Oxford presented during the residence of the king at the time of the civil war. A city unique in itself became the resort of a court under unique circumstances, and of an innumerable throng of people of every rank, disposition, and taste, under circumstances the most extraordinary and romantic. The ancient colleges and halls were thronged with ladies and courtiers; noblemen lodged in small attics over bakers' shops in the streets ; soldiers were quartered in the college gates and in the kitchens ; yet, with all this confusion, there was maintained both something of a courtly pomp, and something of a learned and religious society. The king dined and supped in public, and walked in state in Christ Church meadow and Merton Gardens and the Grove of Trinity, which the wits called Daphne. A Parliament sat from day to day ; service was sung daily in all the chapels; books both of learning and poetry were printed in the city; and the distinctions which the colleges had to offer were con
Origin of the American Flag.–Mr. Charles F. Dennet, formerly of Boston, now resident at Brighton, sends the following note as to the origin of the “Stars and Stripes" : “The banner of St. Andrew was blue, charged with a white saltier or cross, in the form of the letter X, and was used in Scotland as early as the eleventh century. The banner of St. George was white, charged with the red cross, and was used in England as early as the first part of the fourteenth century. By a royal proclamation, dated April 12, 1706, these two crosses were joined together upon the same banner, forming the ancient national flag of England. It was not until Ireland, in 1801,
was made a part of Great Britain, that the present National Flag of England, so well known as The Union Jack, was completed. But it was the Ancient flag of England that constituted the basis of the American banner. It was aster Washington had taken command of the fresh army of the Revolution, January 2nd, 1776, that he unfurled before them the new flag of thirteen stripes of alternate red and white, having upon one of its corners the red and white crosses of St. George and St. Andrew, on a field of blue. And this was the standard which was borne into the city of Boston when it was evacuated by the British troops and was entered by the American army. Uniting, as it did, the flags of England and America, it showed that the then colonists were not yet prepared to sever the tie that bound them to the mother country. By that union of fags they claimed to be a vital and substantial part of the empire of Great Britain, and demanded the rights and privileges which such a relation implied. Yet it was by those thirteen stripes that they made known the Union ; also of the thirteen colonies, the stripes of white declaring the purity and innocence of their cause, and the stripes of red giving forth defiance to cruelty and oppression. On the 14th of June, 1777, it was resolved by Congress, “That the flag of the original thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white, and that the Union be thirteen white stars in a blue field.' In 1818 it was enacted that the thirteen original stripes should be retained, and that the number of stars should henceforth correspond to the growing number of States. Then the flag would symbolise the Union as it might be at any given period of its history, and also as it was at the very hour of its birth. It is enough-in arrangement--if the whole number of stars be there upon that azure fold-the blue to be emblematical of perseverance, vigilance, and justice, each star to glorify the glory of the State it may represent, and the whole to be elo. quent for ever, of a Union that must be 'One and inseparable.'”
Bath, in all a hero. Rare gifts marked him for great things in peace and war. He had an iron mind and frame, a terrible courage, an indomitable will, yet was he gentle exceedingly, most loving, most kind. In all he thought and did unselfish, plain, and true-indeed, a most noble man. In public affairs he was the pupil of the good Sir Henry Lawrence, and worthy of his master. Few took a greater share in either the government or conquest of the Punjab, perhaps none so great in both. To the last he was in that province a tower of strength. Soldier and civilian, he was the type of the conquering race. Most fitly in the great siege of Delhi he led the first column of attack and carried the main breach, dealing a deathblow to the greatest danger that ever threatened British India. Most mournfully, yet most gloriously, in the moment of victory, he fell mortally wounded, and died the 23rd of September, 1857, yet only thirty-five !"
In the Name of the Prophet-Figs !—Every man of letters will rejoice in any honour paid to Mr. Trübner, whose cour. tesy is equal to his learning, and who holds a high place among London publishers and bibliopoles. We suppose it is the tremendous length of the Buddhist prophet-king's name which gives a ludicrous aspect to the following announcement : “ His Majesty Somdetch Phra Paramindr Maha Chulalonkorn Phra Chula Chom Klao, King of Siam, has appointed Mr. Nicholas Trübner a member of the Fourth Class, called Bhusanabhorn, or Officer of the Most Exalted Order of the White Elephant. We believe Mr. Trübner has been thus honoured because of his zeal in the publication of Pali-Buddhist literature, the King of Siam being the supreme spiritual head of the Buddhist religion.”
Whales.-In the February part of the “Leisure Hour,” page 123, reference is made to Mr. Gosse having seen, on a voyage to Jamaica, a vast shoal of cetaceous animals, of a species not known to naturalists, or, at least, never scientifically described. The ship was for seventeen hours in the midst of this troop of what seemed a new species of Delphinorhyncus. In a more recent voyage the steamer Newport, from New York to Cuba, met with a vast shoal of whales. The captain, John Sudberg, estimated the number at some thousands, the troop extending for about twenty miles in length, and about half a mile in breadth. Most of them seemed to be from 18 to 20 mètres long (a mètre is nearly 391 inches). It was about 8 a.m., the sea calm, and the sun shining brilliantly. All the passengers were on deck, and witnessed the grand spectacle. Whilst they were looking at the distant shoal a larger whale passed right athwart the prow of the steamer, and was struck by it with such violence as to cause a shock which terrified the passengers. The sea was red with the blood of the wounded whale. Another large whale being sighted, the captain thought it prudent to change his course somewhat, and to put on all speed, so as to get a6 quickly as possible from so dangerous a neighbourhood. The chief danger dreaded by him was that the screw might be injured by the impe. tuous rush of a huge animal diving under the ship.
Classical Quotations. —" Quotation, sir, is a good thing ; there is community of mind in it; classical quotation is the parole of literary men all over the world."- Johnson.
John Wesley's Weight. -A correspondent writes : “In a paragraph in the 'Leisure Hour' for February there is a statement that William Wilberforce, when weighed at Stoke Newington, was found to be only seventy-six pounds, or less than five stone and a half. The account closes with the inquiry-What was John Wesley's weight? The answer to that question can be given in Mr. Wesley's own words. The extract is from Stevenson's ‘Memorials of the Wesley Family,' page 350. On visiting his friend the Rev. Vincent Perronet, of Shoreham, he made this entry in his journal. In the year 1769, I weighed one hundred and twenty-two pounds. In the year 1783, I weighed not a pound more nor a pound less. I doubt if another such instance is to be found in Great Britain.' It may be mentioned, that John Wesley is said by the family of his brother Charles to have been five feet five and a half inches high, and his father was also the same height.” (What about full-age jockeys ?)
Poor Relief in Isle of Man.-It is not generally known that in one portion of the United Kingdom--the Isle of Man -no poor-rates exist. Voluntary relief is in force, and any experience of its working is therefore interesting in regard to the possibility of the same system obtaining in England. The only departure from the voluntary system is in regard to lunatics, for whose support in the asylum a rate is levied under the Act of Tynwald, 1860. The income available for the relief of the poor arises in each parish or town from endowments and bequests either of money or real estate, supplemented by church collections and annual and other subscriptions. The administering the charitable funds avail. able for poor relief is in most parishes in the hands of the vicar and church wardens, and in other parishes by wardens elected by the ratepayers. By occasional consultations, the abuse of duplicate relief is guarded against.. The inquiries into individual cases prevent other abuses.
The system works efficiently in helping real poverty and in repressing mendicity.
John Nicholson, of the Panjab.—The recently published Life of Lord Lawrence and the Recollections of Sir Richard Temple have afresh recalled to memory the noble life and early death of John Nicholson, Brigadier-General, at the siege of Delhi. The following is his epitaph, by Colonel Herbert Edwardes, who knew him well :-“ Brigadier. General Nicholson's epitaph, by Colonel Edwardes. —This is the grave of John Nicholson, bravest of the brave, who entered the army of the H.E.I.C. in 1839, and served in four great wars- - Afghanistan, 1841-42; Sutlej, 1845-46 ; Pun. jab, 1848-49 ; Hindostan, 1857. In the first he was ensign, in the last a brigadier-general and Companion of the
Home, Sweet Home. --By authority of the American Government, the remains of John Howard Payne, author of “Home, sweet home,” have been removed from Tunis, where he was buried when consul-general from the States. There is a memorial window in the English church at Tunis, placed by public subscription through the exertions of the Rev. E. H. Shepherd, formerly chaplain there, now of Shepton Mallet. The inscription is, “ In memory of John Howard Payne, author of 'Home, sweet home;'” and in the centre light the motto, “ The Lord hath brought me home." Mr. Shepherd says that the author of the song which has gladdened so many homes was himself a homeless, solitary, unhappy misanthrope, who ought in eariy lise to have known the truth that “it is not good for man to be alone.”
LOWLY and reluctantly Etta laid aside her you are very unpunctual, and Ernest and I want
hat and outdoor wraps and went downstairs. our tea."
The tea was prepared, and both Ernest and “I had rather not,” replied Etta, faintly, seatMiss Matty were already there, the latter seated ing herself in the nearest chair, this sudden tranbefore the urn. The curtains were drawn, and sition from cold to heat, or some other cause, the fire burnt brightly, making the room warm as making her feel giddy and sick. There was a well as cheerful. Struck by the change of tem- strange, wistful look about her that immediately perature, Etta paused on the threshold, and stood attracted Ernest's attention, as she glanced towith the door in her hand.
wards him with what he thought a deprecating “Take your place, Miss Lacy; no one wants to expression and a quiver about the mouth indicadeprive you of it,” said Miss Matty, mistaking the tive of suppressed feeling. cause of her hesitation, and about to rise; “only “Poor little thing !” thought he, “I had no
idea of making her suffer; though she did her best to wound me, I believe she was only playing a part. It was quite unnecessary; a few words of a very different character would have equally crushed my pretensions, but she is scarcely more than a child.”
“Take this seat, Miss Lacy, I fear you are feeling the ill effects of sitting in the cold," he said, aloud, wheeling one of the large comfortable leathern chairs close to the table.
“ From the fire-away from the fire,” she murmured, dropping into another, and throwing back her head, she sat for a moment bolt upright.
Miss Matty poured out a cup of tea and handed it to her. Taking it from her mechanically, Etta set it down and stared at it.
“What is the matter now, child ? ” asked Miss Matty, sharply.
Thus reproved, Etta tried to brace herself up and take her tea, hoping that if she could manage to swallow a few drops she should be better. As she put out her hand for that purpose the room began to turn, Miss Matty and the urn went round together. The eyelids fell on the little white cheeks, and she was slipping from the chair to the ground when Ernest hurried to her aid.
“ She is ill-she has fainted! What shall I do with her, aunt ? I fear I have caused her some sorrow,” he said, looking down pitifully.
"You ?” replied Miss Matty, in surprise-for, like her brother, she was beginning to appreciate her nephew, and to think he could do no wrong.
After giving him one sharp, inquiring look, she proceeded to busy herself about Etta. Under his aunt's direction Ernest carried her upstairs; and Miss Matty and her maid, after administering the necessary restoratives, put her to bed.
Sarah Foster was deputed to sit up with her, and before morning it was evident that she was seriously ill. At an early hour they sent for Dr. Philips, who pronounced 'her illness to be fever of the same character as that prevalent in the village.
This opinion caused a general disturbance in the household.
“I have no doubt she caught it by going to the Fosters'. I warned her not to go, but perhaps it was too late," observed Ernest, when talking her over with his aunt.
"Most probably," returned Miss Matty. if you advised her not to go, why did you say that you were the cause of her illness ? "
Thus questioned, Ernest proceeded to give the result of his interview with Etta.
“If she is engaged or attached to another she cannot of course listen to me,” he added, by way of diminishing Miss Matty's outspoken displeasure.
“Nonsense; a child like that, just leaving off pinafores and dolls, what has she to do with previous engagements and affections! If you were willing to take her she ought to have been thankful. What will your uncle say to this new piece of folly ?”
"I hope he will devise some expedient of being just to me without being unjust to her. It strikes me that you are both hard upon her, and, instead of soothing, draw out a spirit of hostility which
tends to make her regard every one as an enemy. She leads an unnatural life; neither you nor my uncle ever give her a word of affection; the servants pay her no respect; instead, therefore, of her trying to please others, which is, or ought to be, the characteristic of young people, she is always struggling for her rights-rights as she understands them. A very little kindness from either of you would have made her amiable enough. There is a great deal of latent good in her, I am persuaded.”
"A pity it is so overclouded, then," rejoined Miss Matty. But, in spite of her professed indifference, she proved an efficient and devoted nurse.
Whether from the effect of Ernest's solicitude, or a sense of her own shortcomings, Miss Rivers was unremitting in her attention. She spent hours in the sick room, often by night as well as day, ministering to her comfort and wants with gentleness as well as patience. Her example influenced the household. Even Lizzie did not dare to be negligent; any instance of carelessness met with an immediate and sharp resuke, so that it did really seem as if, in illness, Etta obtained the coveted importance she had failed to acquire when well.
Mr. Rivers, to the general surprise, testified considerable interest in the progress of the fever, sometimes asking if she were properly cared for, and at others recommending that she should not be pampered and spoilt.
"We can't do both,” said Miss Matty, testily, one day when he had been more than usually troublesome about her.
“ " I suppose she will soon be well enough to talk, and must by this time have made up her mind as to what is best for her to do. I want to hear if she is willing to marry Ernest, if not I must look after his fortunes in some other way.”
“The sooner the better, then, for the wheels of life rarely run as smoothly as our wishes would make them."
“What do you mean, Matty? You are always at your parables and nonsense. Why don't you speak plainly ?"
“Well, it is plain enough that this comfortable plan, which would have suited all parties but one, will not be realised. Ernest has made his suit and got his answer. The little lady rejects his addresses because engaged to some one else.”
Miss Matty did not intend to mislead her brother. She only stated as fact the impression received from her nephew, with no arrière pensée except to make Mr. Rivers feel the necessity of providing for his relative in some other manner.
“The little minx !” exclaimed Mr. Rivers, angrily; "what does she mean by such nonsense? Oh, but we will teach her better, we will teach her better. Send Ernest to me as soon as he comes in."
“You will find your nephew too honourable to pursue his suit under present circumstances, even if we did not know the girl to be headstrong in her temper, with a will of her own. You cannot be more vexed than I am."
“Vexed; I am not vexed,” said the old man, grinding his teeth together. “We are vexed