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ment, “ My Schools and Schoolmasters," like the “Gipsy Countess," would be left will always have intense attraction for the “ to die in their own native shade." lovers of a good personal history.

Our glance at the literary life of the last Those charming, old romancers, the fifty years has, of necessity, been cursory buccaneers and explorers of olden times, and imperfect. Such is the number of have had a more staid and accurate, new books constantly issuing from the though no less adventurous, succession of press, that without converting an article sons in the African travellers of our days into a catalogue, it would be impossible

Livingstone, Speke and Grant, Baker, even to naine those that win a temporary Stanley, and Du Chaillu; while the ladies same. And it does not at all follow that have been well represented all round the those only are the “fittest " which survive globe by Miss Bird, Lady Brassey, Miss for a few years. Success is often due -Gordon ́Cumming, and other itinerants. in books as in soap or starch or blacking

The study of metaphysics can scarcely to persevering puffing, and to the in. be said to have made much advance in Auence of powerful friends. This is evi. this half-century, or to occupy so promi- dently an age of " the making of books,” nent a position in literature as it did in in every sense; and with the multitude the preceding fifty years. Men's minds, of books there seems to come, more whether for good or for evil, are bent and more visibly, a tendency to universal more on solving mechanical and economic mediocrity. Possibly this is only a lull problems than on discussing the Ego and before a storm of great writers bursts the Norlego, and mapping out the higher upon us, as has happened once and again provinces of thought-land. The chief in our national history. The world of publications have been, on the one hand, bright thought and poetic emotion is by the lectures of Sir William Hamilton, no means used up as yet, and the dull carefully edited by Mansell and Veitch, level of a critical, matter-of-fact generaand, on the other, the various works of tion may be but a bit of the highroad to the acute but limited John Stuart Mill. a paradise of appreciation in which the

A great feature in the literature of to. coming poets and other masters of the day is the multiplication of periodical literary art shall bask and revel. May works. Magazines, reviews, weekly pa. they, when they have to quit the stage of pers, are produced in an ever-increasing life, leave behind them as kindly a chronratio, lill at length every shade of thought, icler of their foibles and as brave an every trade and profession, seems to have asserter of their virtuous qualities as Mr. its own particular organ in the press. Hall is for the men and women of bygone Amongst the older papers Punch, by its years ! To his volumes we refer the wit and wisdom, still keeps a foreinost reader for much pleasant gossip about place. About its earlier and wilder years authors and artists, with the latter of clustered such a galaxy of wits as En whom his editorship of the Art Journal gland has seldoin seen united in any un- for forty-two years brought him into close dertaking Douglas Jerrold, Thomas intercourse. Through the whole work Hood, Thackeray, Dickens, Gilbert Ab- shines a devout spirit, and the close of a bot à Beckett, Mark Lemon, Shirley long life of literary labor is in his case Brooks, Toni Taylor; aided by the ready brightened by the comfortable assurance pencils of Doyle and Leech and Tenniel. of soon rejoicing the excellent woman And now, though in this, as in some other who was his companion on earth for fiftythings, we may sometimes think that the six years. We feel sincere respect and former days were better than these, still, regard for the veteran whose career has under the genial editorship of Mr. Bur. been an honor to the profession of letters, nand, this oldest of the "comics" still and who, in his “ Farewell” to his readers maintains a deservedly high position. A and friends, can thus speak of the last new departure bas been the throwing open enemy: of the pages of certain periodicals for the discussion of controverted topics by emi. Why shrink from Death? Come when he will nent men on both sides : a method which The night he brings will bring the risen day. has striking advantages, but which also His call, his touch, I neither seek nor shun; operates for the propagation of doubtful His power is ended when his work is done. and noxious tenets, which would com. My Shield of Faith no cloud of Death can mand no attention or circulation in the

dim : ancient form of book or pamphlet, but, | Death cannot conquer me! I conquer him!

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LIVING AGE.

VOL. XLIII.

2210

CHAPTER I.

66

inamma.

From Temple Bar. two hundred thousand pounds, and this is UNCLE GEORGE'S WILL.

left to you absolutely, but on one condition

“ And that condition is the impossible “But, mamma, it is impossible !” thing that I can't believe.”

“But, Mollie, it is not only possible, " And that condition is,” went on Lady but it is a fact!”.

Mary, without taking the smallest notice Mamma, I don't believe it !"

of the interruption, “ that you marry your Very well, then look at your uncle's cousin Stephen Charles Algernon Houghletter yourself," and Lady Mary Houghton.” ton tossed a closely-written letter across “ Was there ever such a name !” cried the breakfast-table to her daughter. Mollie.

Mollie picked up the letter gingerly “And if you refuse to marry him, or with the tips of her fingers.

marry any one else, then all this money is “ It won't bite,” said her mother irrita- to go to a nasty hospital. I never heard bly.

of such a thing !” cried Lady Mary in a “ I don't feel at all sure about that, burst of indignation.

If it was Uncle Edward him- “It is the most abominable, dreadful, self, it would.”

wicked, and intolerable will that ever was “ Nonsense!”

made," said M ie. “ And oh! to think Mollie, with a deep frown upon her that poor dear good Uncle George should pretty white forehead, began to read. have imagined such iniquity.”

"I am glad poor Uncle George has left “Granted that it is all you say, Mollie !” something to Meta and Agnes,” she said. said her mother severels, "remember that “At least there is some good in his will.” you have got to do it.”

“ Five thousand to each of my married “ Mamma!” cried Mollie, in a tone of daughters,” said Lady Mary complacent- such amazed horror that Lady Mary in ly. “ Yes, it will gratify your brothers-in spite of herself could not help laughing. law; and I am sure Meta will want it, if “Oh Mollie, Mollie, of course you must she goes on having two babies regularly don't you see it? You can't ruin this every year.”

poor young man's prospects “ if they are all as pretty as the last condemn him to beggary. I must appeal four, I wish she might have three a year,” to your better side." said Mollie lightly. " I never saw such a “No, no, no!” cried Mollie, shutting set of little ducks!"

her ears with her fingers. “I won't have “Of course you like them, who have my better side appealed to! Yes, I will none of the trouble and responsibility, though,” very suddenly. “Of course my you little goose.”

better side is all for the hospital - of “Not to speak of the natural affinity course I could not think of thwarting between ducks and geese,” said Mollie Uncle George's philanthropic intentions, gravely - her poor little face becoming certainly not! I am not so bad as that, more and more disconsolate.

“ Aud five mamma.' thousand to you, mamma, that is nice ! and You are silly this morning,” said Lady I see nothing about me. You were hoax- Mary, “and are taken by surprise also, so ing after all, mammie dear! I am so I will make allowances for your silliness. thankful.”

Hospital indeed! I never did

approve

of “Mollie, when you have a little more pauperizing the people and experience, you will know that the residue “Good-morning, mamma,” cried two is always at the end.”

bright young voices, and the two married “Oh, but if it is only the residue” daughters came in together. she cried hopefully:

• Aggie wanted to go to Marshall and Only the residue! but that is the Snelgrove's, and I wanted to take her, so bulk!"

I picked her up in Brook Street, and we ** Ob dear!” cried Mollie. “I thought have come in on the way to hear if you the residue meant the fag end, and the have heard from Uncle Edward.” bulk the capacious middle, and

“Yes," said her mother, “I have. Ring “ You are incorrigible !” said Lady the bell, Mollie, for more coffee. What Mary, drawing her chair from the break- will you have, dear?" fast-table, and warming her feet by the “ I should like something - I am awfire. “Come and sit by the fire, and if I fully hungry,” said Meta, undoing her fur can I will explain it all to you. The resi- hat. "I breakfasted at half past seven due of your uncle's fortune amounts to with Tom, who has gone into Heriford

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shire for a shoot. Is that muffin ? quick, to her, on condition that she marries the Mollie. But how late you are! What Indian cousin, Stephen Houghton, and if time did you go. to bed ?

she does not marry him it is all to go to “Nine o'clock," said Mollie absently found a hospital.” “ There is nowhere to go now, so we "So Mollie is provided with a fortune went to bed. Mamma and I are always and a husband without the trouble of late in the morning when we go to bed waiting for either," said Meta, pouring out early."

some cc ee. “I congratulate you, Poll.” Oh, do be quiet,” said Agnes.

"I won't be congratulated! There is do chatter so; and I am dying to know nothing to congratulate me about.” about the will."

" My dear little child,” said Aggie “ He has left each of you girls

soothingly. “What? Quick, mamma!”

“Don't say things now that you will be “ Five thousand.”

sorry for afterwards. You would not do “Oh!” Meta jumped up, and executed such an immoral thing as deprive Stephen an animated pas seul in the middle of the of his patrimony;" room.

“I should do worse if I were to con“He is an intense old brick !” she sent to marry the creature without cried.

without “ He isn't," said Mollie mournfully. " Without what?" said her mother

“ He is, you minx. I shall send Tom a coldly. telegram, I think, very carefully worded.” “She means love, mamma," said Meta.

" It is very nice,” said Aggie, more se- • With an utter disregard for the fact that dately. “Go on, mamma.”

love is an exploded idea, and that nothing He leaves the big silver dinner-service, is of the smallest consequence except an and all the Houghtonleigh plate to your adequate settlement." brother Charles. It will be very useful to " And a virtuous esteem," put in Aggie. him at Marchlands. Five thousand to “Don't be childish, Mollie; you have that

already for the worthy Stephen, and there And nothing to the Indian cousin ?" is always a chance that such a beginning asked Meta. Every one said that he may ripen into a warmer sentiment.”. was sure to have the bulk."

Certainly, Mollie,” said Meta, whose Lady Mary glanced at Mollie, who gave young husband had fallen in love with a little bound in her chair.

her at first sight, and stoutly maintained “ You talk about what you do not under that she had done likewise. Their love stand, Meta,” she said, 'flushing scarlet. affairs had been highly satisfactory. “ A will is like a merino sheep all its “Well, what is to be done?” said Ag. value is in its tail."

“There is always a next move to " What does the child mean? Go on, everything, what is it to be?mamma."

“I really have not had a moment in “ The residue of the property is left to which to think,” said Lady Mary ruefully. Mollie on one condition."

“What with Mollie's high-flown nonsense, “Oh!” cried both again, “my dear and your talk, my dear girls, I have not Mollie! how magnificent! How much ?” been able to collect my thoughts; and “ Two hundred thousand."

there is a letter from your Aunt Jane I " And Mollie is to have it all ? "

have not even opened yet.” “ Not a sixpence,'

," said Mollie dole. “Ah, that is sure to contain some sug. fully. “It is a snare and a delusion, a gestion of value,” cried Meta. Open it mirage which no earthly traveller can at once, mamma, and let us hear it. 'Aunt reach, an apple of Sodom which turns to Jennie is always the cleverest of the ashes at our lips. It is all left to found a whole lot.” hospital!”

Lady Mary opened the letter, and her Mollie,” said her mother indignantly, three daughters gathered all round to “I did not bring you up to tell positive read it over her shoulder, Meta holding a black fibs."

corner of it to bring it more within the " • A lie that is half a truth, is ever the vision of her rather short-sighted eyes. worst of lies," said Mollie, unable to re- They read as follows: sist the quotation.

“Oh, how you chatter !” said Agnes. MY DEAR MARY, “Do tell us the whole thing, mamma, and “ Now there must be no don't let Mollie interrupt every moment." about this matter. I cannot hear two

“ Be quiet, Mollie ! The money is left words about it. Of course I can't have

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CHAPTER II.

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poor dear Johnnie's son denuded of his fitted for an æsthetic figure like mine," own lawful property for the sake of any said Mollie hysterically. romantic trash a silly chit may take into “ The brougham is at the door, my her head.”

ladr."

"There, I must not keep the horses “How you catch it, Poll!” said Meta.

waiting. Quick, Mollie, get your hat." “Sh - go on."

Mollie ran up stairs. “Please to impress this at once upon tions, and had not finished before she

Lady Mary began giving hurried direcMollie. I expect her cousin here on Tuesday the eighteenth of next month; reappeared. he will spend some time with me, and

“ Cloth, Meta, mind, and made to fit matters shall then be finally arranged as

thoroughly, and moderate buttons - yours to fitting times and seasons."

were too large; and patterns for the even

ing.” “I dare say!” said Mollie indignantly.

* All right, mamma. Come, Aggie, 6. Hush - sh!"

Marshall is selling off, and I mean to buy

half the shop at half price." “So, dear Mary, pack up Miss Mollie at once, without any unnecessary delay. You can go and stay with Charles at

“ PRIT-TY, prit-ty Polly Ho-opkins, Marchlands, it will do you all good; and

How do you do-o? - How do you do-o? I will undertake Mollie's affairs. She does not leave this house until she has Ready, Poll? How much longer do you made up her mind to be a reasonable mean to keep a fellow waiting ?

As to love, I do not think any “Mamma,” said Mollie, “there is Tom daughter of yours could be so irrational down-stairs shrieking for me already, and as for one moment to consider it worthy I wanted to say so many things about of consideration when a plain duty is

" Mol-lie !" from below. involved."

“ You must not keep him waiting, dear,

when he is ready to take you to the sta. I see my duty,” said Mollie tion. I really think you have said all that with a gasp.

“ There is such a want of there can be to say. If you only knew hospitals, and this one —

how tired I am of hearing you say the My dear Mollie, what on earth do you same thing over and over again.”

“ But, mamma,” cried Mollie, trying “ I won't go to Aunt Jennie's."

very bard to suppress her tears, “I won't Yes, you will,” said her mother. do it, mamma, you know.”

Oh yes, darling, of course you will,” “ Mol-lie !" said her sisters.

She stamped her little foot. " But I am not going.”

My dear little girl, you will lose the Mamma,” said Meta, “we are going train. Give my best love to Aunt Jane, to Marshall and Snelgrove's. Do you and tell her to write to me at Marchwant anything for Mollie for this visit? lands." has she got anything in the world to “Oh, mamma, I wear?"

“Nonsense, child, you have got three I have got all my season gowns.” weeks to enjoy Aunt Jennie before Ste“All Londony, and smelling of smoke. phen comes, so think no more about it.”. Oh, please, mamma,” cried Meta, “let me “ I shall come back on the seventeenth, get her one or two really killing gets-up. mamma; that is quite decided.” Nothing is worn now but tailor-made, and Mol-lie ! ten-forty!" she has got such a nice, round, soft little My dear, do go." figure."

“Good-bye, mamma, till the seven. "" Very well, only you must let me have teenth. I shall go to Marchlands if you some little choice in the matter. I should are not here." like her to look her best."

But Tom would wait no longer, he “Naturally,” said Aggie significantly. dashed up the stairs five steps at a time. “But I won't look my best, if you mean

You'll be late for the train, you per. that - that -

verse young person, you ! Now do Yes, that that

Come, Poll, come. be reasonable, and I will make you a real With one more hasty kiss Mollie ran duck."

down-stairs. “ Turkey twill quilted eider-down, so Meta was waiting to take her to the

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station with the four children in the car. “My dear child," said Aunt Jane, kiss. riage. Tom jumped into a lansom and ing her again and again, “ I am so glad they were off.

see you, and you are looking so You look charming, my dear, quite pretty!" charming!” said her sister. “If only It was a very proper boudoir in which Stephen

they met, the paper Morris's darkest sage. "Oh, Mettie !” cried Mollie in an ago: green, chimneypiece painted to match; ny. If you knew how like pins and the whole room full of screens, many einneedles, and mustard and peppercorns, broidered sunflowers, many scanty-leaved his horrid name is to me, you would for- irises. bear.”

A large sofa was drawn up near the “I forbear," she answered, laughing. fire, on which lay Lady Jane's only daugh. “Here we are at Paddington, and Tomter, Gwendoline, the owner of the bou. gesticulating frantically."

doir, and alas ! an invalid. Had she been “ Bell rung ! quick, quick!"

bright with health she would have been a They had to run up the platform, as fast very pretty woman; as she was, there as it was possible to run, to the carriage was something very sweet in the delicate where Mollie's anxious maid was leaning face. out of the window, white with suspense. “ How are you, Cousin Gwendoline,”

The train was just starting. Mollie put said Mollie, stooping to kiss her cousin out her pretty head.

affectionately. “I do so hope that you Good-bye, Tom; tell Meta I won't - are better.” won't

“I am very well for me," was the cheery “ Refuse?" shouted Tom. " That is answer. " Are you cold, Mollie? Mamright, dear! that's right!” waving his ma, bring her close to the fire.” hand and Mollie was borne off with a “Oh, no, thank you," said Mollie, who, horrible doubt in ber mind as to whether coming in from the frosty air, was stilling. he had only pretended to hear wrong or “ I am as warm as a toast indeed.” not.

“How nice to be quite warm in such However, she settled down in her cor- weather !” said Gwendoline with a little ner of the carriage with one of the immor. shiver. tal“ Chronicles of Carlingford” to read, It was too late for tea, so Mollie was and was very comfortable.

taken up to her room to dress and rest At one o'clock hunger overpowered pru- before dinner, and there Aunt Jane could dence, which would have suggested a later say nothing to her, because her maid was hour for luncheon, and Mollie ate all her getting out her things as quickly as she sandwiches.

could, so Mollie felt thankful that the evil She regretted this when five o'clock tea- moment was put off. time came and passed — but regrets were “ Did you hear whether anybody was useless. Not until seven o'clock did she staying here, Burton ?" she asked, as soon reach her destination, and even then there as ihe door had closed upon her aunt. were twenty minutes of warm brougham Yes, miss; your grandmamma is here and fur ruý between her and Lady Jane's – no ladies but her ladyship — and Caphouse, Holliwell.

tain Houghton." All things come to an end. Just as • Ob!" said Mollie. She wondered they were arriving her maid suddenly ex- who Captain Houghton was, then sudclaimed,

denly remembered with a horrible qualm “Oh, I beg your pardon, miss, but Sir that some one had once said that Stephen Thomas gave me this for you, and I quite was a captain. forgot it."

“ Impossible,” she said to herself, half. " This

an ornamental box of rising from her chair. Her aunt would French bonbons. Mollie was touched, never be guilty of such a piece of treachand said, “Dear old Tom !” under her ery as that! Her cheeks burned so much breath, and wished she had had them at the very idea that she wondered how

- they might have helped to fill she should ever get them cool for dinner. up the gap at five o'clock, and now it was Meanwhile an odd conversation was nearly dinner-time.

going on in the drawing-room down-stairs. The carriage drew up, a hospitable light Gwendoline, in her long pale gown, her streamed from the hall door, and in two wraps of elaborate crewel-work, bad been seconds Mollie found herself in the arms carried up-stairs; and Lady Jane in a of her aunt, in front of a fire large enough most comfortable and becominy peignoir to roast an ox whole.

of crimson plush, had taken her place on

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