Sivut kuvina


the rug, and beheld that grim, hard, now dying face, so terribly graven on her heart. At this moment the mistress of the house came into the room. Ay, mum, as I've often told him since he lay there, all talk arn't the thing. As 'cause, where are all his flock, as was to have done so much after he turned shepherd, eh?” “But 1—” began the dying man.

Oh, sir,” interrupted the girl, as she meekly knelt down beside the wretched bed and hid her face, “ look on me, and do believe that not words of mercy, but its action is the saviour of the world. Look on me, and recollect what I was and what'

It was the voice of natural piety that touched the heart of mistaken bigotry at last : and therefore of our divinest nature were the tears that fell in contrition from the Pharisee, and mingled with those of the Nazarene !

With a woman's true enigmatical heart in all such matters, Magdalen, though she went straight and revealed all to “De Arte bene Moriendi on the other side of the chameleon bottles, never said a word to little. Mary; but it was observable, after Mr. Toby's visit on the morrow, that there was a great whispering between him and Miss Fogg, and a hurried visit from the notary, much looking at papers, and so on ; not, too, without a sly glance at Magdalen herself. Moreover too, by strange excuses, the girl was kept from her wonted errand; and when Mr. Toby was remonstrated with, or her small gains laid before him, he pushed back the one, and whispered something about “ dangerous ” of the other. As Miss Fogg, too, commenced talking about a particular cup of tea on a certain night, and veritably replenished her tea canister with some extraordinary green, Magdalen finally thought of the new silk dress, and, at last, making the extraordinary purchase, hid it in three several papers in the ivy itself, from all but the little peering eyes of Tibb, who, tucking himself up on the banister, kept watch and ward. The night at last came, that very day week since she had met the Swede ; and with it the notary in his best black, and “De Arte bene Moriendiwith a nice frosted plum-cake in his pocket instead of a lancet, and all sat happily down to taste the astounding green ; the happy little woman herself, though withal in her rusty gown, yet in her best cap, and the beautiful upraised flower in the rich garlanding tresses that nature had bestowed. Well! the very first cup was


hardly poured out, when the door being quickly thrust back, in marched veritable Shake, carrying his old horn-lantern, which was unusually bright, and followed by Harald Borjestein, the Swedish sailor, weak and pale yet, to be sure, but decently dressed, and full of hope, and happiness, and love, in the tempest-graven face. Need I say, that knowing all the past, the present, and sure of theto-come, he pressed the up-raised lily to his heart with all a man's true fervour.

Oh! never such a slow-progressing happy tea hour before or since. When over, Magdalen, in her deep joy, forgot not the marvellous black silk gown, but bringing it forward, laid it before the wondering little woman; and if human thankfulness could have fallen upon it, in one hue of beauty, the craftsman Nature might have been outrivalled. “ Too good, too good, wept the little woman ; " but I 'll have it made up and wear it “Our wedding-day, Polly," said

said De Arte bene Moriendi,“ which shall be that of ours, and in a day or two,' spoke the sailor, producing from his pocket the finest of weddingrings. “ And thanking ye, mum, for the second blessedest cup

o' tea I ever tasted,” chimed in Shake, “the fust being on that here night the little cretur was lifted into the wehicle, you shall go to church in the coach, which shall be touched up with leather and brush, the dear 'osses not allowed to nap a bit, and four yards of the very best white satin riband for top-nots, if I 've to spout my

backker-box to buy it." The tale of the Swedish sailor was simple enough. During his absence on a voyage, some property of inheritance in Nordland had come to him. Part of this had been paid by bills into a Hamburgh bank, and letters of advice sent to Trapps care. But for the little woman, and her advice with the notary and the doctor, it might never have been heard of. They, however, long on the outlook for Borjestein and in communication with the Swedish authorities, now at once seized on Trapps ; who yet managed to escape in some outbound vessel, leaving, however, enough of his ill-got gains behind to furnish forth the marriage, and a small trading cargo for the seaman's next voyage.

On the once desolate piece of waste land is now erected a Sailors' Home, in which Mr. Toby has invested his small capital. Nor need I

say what sort of home it is, where “ De Arte bene Moriendi,” as of old, cures and saves ; where old Mary still writes loving and truthful letters for the ocean-sons ; where best the spirit of the Magdalen watches and tends. The old coach, wheelless, has become a baby-house ; whilst Mr. Shake, having turned amateur gardener, often, in summer days, sits to smoke his pipe upon the broad flag-steps that dip to the river brink ; and there tells Magdalen's two little golden-haired children to lift their faces to the summer air, for now the nor'-east wind blows from the sea, and wafts their father homeward in his good stout ship of Norwegian timber. Flow on thou river from thy pastoral fountains to the eternal sea ! and be to human hearts, as to nature-type of the infinity of good.

My Predicate is this - The Worm thou treadest under foot, Oh, world! if raised by thy hands, and placed towards the sun, would surely become a winged and spiritual creature ; that, in itself, as in its causations, might go on progressively towards God.



A venerable man, whose whole career
Had been one round of sad unwearied toil,
Dying in want !—He who had tilled the soil,
Ay, through many a long, long dreary year-
He who had hoped and ne'er was cowed by fear,
Nor ever heard to murmur or repine,
Breaking no edict, human or divine !
God! what a grand, yet sorry sight was here-
Without a pillow where to lay his head,
No friend to aid him in the hour of need,
Without the wherewithal to buy him bread!
Poor honest soul, is this thy fitting meed ?
Without a groan he died—“It is so, then,
The world knows nothing of its greatest men.”


New Books.


an Artist's Impressions of Countries and People at the Antipodes. With numerous Illustrations. By GEORGE FRENCH ANGAS. 2 vols.

post 8vo. SMITH, ELDER, & Co. Mr. Angas is a man of considerable knowledge of the world, at all events, of the Geographical one, having evidently a passion for travelling; and nature has, in many ways, fitted him for this arduous pursuit. He must be possessed of a sound and enduring constitution, and is blessed with fine animal spirits, that carry him through every annoyance and peril with gaiety and good humour. His talents, too, are of the kind most advantageous to a traveller ; for he has not only-like Inglis-a rapid eye to see, and a considerable power to describe the various striking and novel scenes he visits; but has the power of delineating with the pencil as well as the pen. He very modestly disclaims any pretension to learning ; but he seems to know enough of botany and natural history, to accurately distinguish and describe the various novelties that present themselves to him in his distant and remote journeyings. His style is also joyous and readable, though, here and there, one may think he snatches a grace beyond the reach of his art to compass. This is, however, a mere blemish, and we know not when we have read two volumes, containing so much that is new and interesting.

Mr. Angas is a most enterprising traveller : indeed he is more : he is an explorer. The half-civilised countries of South America, Chili and Patagonia, the scarcely less dangerous travelling of Sicily, have not enough of excitement for him; he seeks the remotest and latest-discovered lands, and enters on the dim and undefined regions that surround them. He has all the spirit of a backwoodsman, with the cultivation of a gentleman. There is, consequently, nothing stale or hacknied in his volumes. No histories of colonies, to fill up. No extracts from local newspapers, showing averages and statistics. No long-drawn arguments in favour of some scheme of colonisation : but, verily, a book of travels, fresh as the countries he visits, and various as their inhabitants, scenes, and productions.

The greater part of the latter portion of the first volume treats of Australia, and the first half of the second volume is devoted to New Zealand, and the remainder to a further account (on his return) of Australia. The wildest and most interesting portion is that relating to New Zealand; though his narrative of his exploration of the monotonous and sandy plains of Australia-of its strange and miserable aborigines, and its extraordinary animals and scenery, is highly entertaining and instructive.

Mr. Angas makes no pretensions to philosophy, though he is a sensible and observant man, merely relating, in very graphic language, what he sees, leaving the meditative and moral inference to be made by his reader. The dullest reader cannot, however, but have his reflection awakened at the strange state in which man is found in these desolate regions, nor avoid wondering at the freaks of nature in the animals and productions. The following is an account of a tribe in Australia :

“ These natives belonged to a tribe totally different from those of the Milmendura, whom we had met with along the shores of the Coorong, and were very inferior to them in physical appearance : their features were remarkably ugly, with a simple silliness of expression, and their figures extremely slight and attenuated, with the abdomen of a disproportionate size. They were filthy and wretched in the extreme ; all their teeth were black and rotten ; their skin was dry, and that of one man presented a purplishred colour. They approached our fire with their arms crossed over their shoulders ; a position that they constantly retained, until some grease was given to them, which they commenced eating, rubbing over their bodies, and daubing upon their hair. One of them had an old cotton handkerchief which he kept concealed under his arm-pit, and as they were destitute of clothing, the oldest man was put into a blue shirt, which created the greatest possible astonishment amongst his companions; they grew very noisy and merry, ate damper and grease, and constantly touched us with their filthy shrivelled hands. After the disgusting operation of sketching them was over, I was truly glad to see them return to their women in the bush : who, if they bear any resemblance to their husbands, can seldom be the occasion of jealousy, for more hideous wretches it were hardly possible to conceive.”

The following will also give some idea of the scenery of the region they inhabited :

“ We penetrated thick woods, amongst which the elegant corea, then in blossom, attained a considerable height, and we crossed more spongy plains, covered with shells and tufa “ biscuits," and subject to occasional inundations. On some of the swamps the natives had built weirs of mud, like a dam wall, extending across from side to side, for the purpose of taking the very small mucilaginous fishes that abound in the water when these swamps are flooded. Low wooded ranges skirted these plains, and kangaroos were abundant. Some of the swamps were covered with an exceedingly rich black soil, and produced luxuriant sow-thistles and other rank vegetation ; the more solid plains were overspread with beautiful green feed, and it was evident we were once more approaching a good country. We came so suddenly upon a native encampment amongst the trees, that the savages had barely time to take alarm at the noise of our horses' hoofs, and we could just

« EdellinenJatka »