rant the conclusion that household duties should properly be assigned to the woman.”

My dear,” replied his wife,“ like the rest of your sex you are adapted to thorough research, but you are painfully superficial. If you will pursue your studies further you will find in Kings xxi. these words: 'I will wipe Jerusalem as a man wipeth a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down.' This conclusively proves that you are nobly, although quietly and unobtrusively, doing the work designed for you by Providence. When you are through, be sure and wash the towels clean, rinse them, shake them, and hang them straight on the rack. Death, you know, George Henry, lurks in the dishcloth," and Mrs. Backenstots tied her bonnet strings in a butterfly bow and went out to attend a meeting of the Society for the Extinction of the Microbe by Means of Electrocution.


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NE morning, the 24th of December, a little ragged urchin

came strolling into the private office of Mr. Oscar

Blount, the prominent Broadway hatter. Whew!” he whistled, “wot a whoppin* big store dis is, an’ wot a lot o’ fellers it takes to stan' around!

Why, my lad, how came you here?” asked the proprietor, in surprise.

I slid past some o' the fellers, an' I cheeked some, an' I told de oders I had somethin' most awfully patickler to say to de big boss.'

“And what have you most awfully particular to say to me?” asked the proprietor, in a kinder tone than that in which he had spoken at first; for there was something in the boy's blue gray eyes which reminded him of a darling little son he had buried only a year ago in the same grave where his beloved wife lay sleeping

“ Wall, I seen in your winder a sign wot reads, 'Boy Wanted,' an'-I'm a boy, an' as nobody never wanted me yet, says I to myself: ‘Dusty, ole feller, p'r’aps here's your chance at last,' says I, an' in I comes.”

“ I'm sorry, but you won't do at all, my boy."

Why, how does yer know, before yer tries a feller? I knows I ain't very pooty, an' I ain't got no fashionable clo'es but I'm smart I am! I went to night-school two winters, I did; an' I got a sixthward o' merit, oncet I did; an' I kin read writin' when it's print letters; an' I kin read readin' when it's only two syllabubbles, an' I kin spell it out when it's three syllabubbles, an' I kin talk some four syllabubbles; an' I kin whistle yer or any oder man in dis yere tremen’yous ole hatbox out o' his boots, I kin! “Yes, yes, I've no doubt you whistle remarkably well, but we

, don't want a boy to whistle." “ I kin dance, too."

Stop, stop, I tell you! We don't want a boy to dance. You won't do, you won't do, as I told you before; so here's a quarter, and now go away.

“I don'want de quarter-nor I don' want to go 'way. I didn't come all de way from Fish Head Alley to dis yere

swell street to go away so soon! I wants a situation I do, an' de fust thing I sees when I comes round de corner was dat 'ere sign 'Boy Wanted!' 'An' dat's good luck,' says I. 'Go in, Dusty, ole feller!' says I. An' I ain't tole yer half wot I kin do yet. I kin spy a cop quicker'n anyone of our gang, an' when one comes in the front door arter yer I kin give yer de wink quicker'n lightnin' an' out de back door yer pops! An' I kin speak pieces, I kin. 'A hoss! a hoss! my kingdom for a hoss! Dey's sixty Richmonds in de field, an' I hab killed dem ebery

-a hoss!“Silence--but ha-ha-ha!come, tell me something about yourself, my boy. What is your name, and where do you live, to begin with?

Dusty's my name. I don' know no oder. One feller, he calls me ‘ Dusty Miller,' 'cause he says dey's a flower dey calls ‘ Dusty Miller.' I believe he's a-foolin'. But if I's de boy wot's wanted I's got to have a nobbier name dan dat.' I say, boss, wot's

“ Mr. Oscar Blount.”

Well, yer might call me dat, toowiddout de 'mister.' It sounds wery nice, ‘Hosscar Blount,' or yer might keep de Hosscar,' an' I'd be de Elevated Road Blount. Anyway yer's a mind to-yer pays yer money,

takes choice. An' I lives round anywheres sence Aunt Kat died.”



your name?


an' yer



“Aunt Kat? And was Aunt Kat your only relation? Have you no father nor mother?”

Nope. Never had none 'cept Aunt Kat. Her hull name was Katrina. She wuz Dutch, she wuz. An' I ain't no friends, 'cept Straw Hat. He keeps a paper-stand, he does, an' he give a party oncet, in a charcoal box, an' I was dere, an' we had a jolly racket. An' I’se got a little bruder.”

A little brother?"

“Yep, sir. He was my cousin, oncet-before dey took Aunt Kat away; but he's my hrudder now, an' I's got to take keer o' him. Oh, he just gobbles bread an' milk! Dat's why I'm lookin' for a situation. Cracky! I'm as full o' big words as a diction'ry, I am! An' Straw Hat, he says, says he: 'If yer wants me to say yer're honest an' sober an’ 'dustrious, I'll say it. I'll say anythink yer wants me to,' says he. Oh, he's a

, a jolly good fellow, he is, an' I ain't givin' no taffy nuther. Why, , he's tuk keer o' me an' my little bruder ever sence Aunt Kat died; but he can't keep on doin' it forever an' ever.”

“And where is your little brother now ? ”
“ Sittin' on your steps, waitin' for me to come out."

Sitting on my front steps? Why, he must be half frozen by this time, poor little fellow! Go and bring him in directly."

” “ There! Ain't that the boy for yer? An' he's real pooty he is, an' if he's de kind o' boy yer want, yer may have him; but yer've got to be awful good to him an’ let me come an’ see him sometimes. Say, boss, to-morrer's Christmas day!”

Well, and what then?” “When all the folks gits presents, an' (de boys wot's got stockin's hangs 'em up, an'—an'-s'pose, Boss,-er-jest fer fun-ver let me an' my little bruder be your Christmas present. "

“Done! I'll pretend I found one in each stocking. But mind, Dusty, you must be one of the best of boys and stop talking slang, or I won't keep you.”

Oh, yer just bet your best boots I'll do anything as yer wants me to. Hurray! Ain't dis a jolly racket! I'm de boy what's wanted in dis establishment after all, an’ I means to be in-wal-u-a-ble."

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[By permission of the author.]
HE waves rolled over the pebbled beach

On the wild Norwegian coast;

The wintry wind whistled swiftly by;
The sea-gulls scudded past.
The bleak, sharp tops of the cliffs and crags

Were niantled o'er with snow.
'Twas the latest day of the dying year,

A thousand years ago.

There were yet two hours ere the sun would sink,

To end both year and day,
When a stately viking ship appeared

And sought the rocky bay.
Swiftly it sped on its shoreward course,

Impelled by the willing hands,
While a stalwart viking held the helm

And issued his brief commands.


Sturdy he was, and tall and strong;

But his bronzéd face and beard
Belied his youth, though they told the tale,

Which the Norsemen often heard-
Of valiant Esbern, whose trusty ship

Had braved the waves and winds,
And whose noble arm had ta’en the spoils

Which the victor warrior finds.
The eye is the casement where lurks the soul,

The poets have often said,
And though Norsemen old were fierce and bold

And filled all men with dread,
There came a softer and milder light

In the viking's eyes of blue,
As they wandered o'er the well-filled ship,

And glanced at his vassals true;

For his thoughts were neither of war nor strife,

Nor the natural victor's pride, But they turned toward the gentle maid and good,

Who was soon to be his bride.
She was wondrous fair, was this northern flower,

In the castle by the sea,
And he murmured beneath his matted beard,

“For thee, my Dagmar, for thee!”

The brazen prow of his vessel strong

Scarce grazed on the pebbled strand
When the viking leaped from the lofty bows

And sped o'er the stretching sand.
As light and as fleet as a reindeer's step

He mounted the snowy slope,
And his fierce wild soul was stirred with love,

His life all joy and hope.

With paces hastened by thought of her,

He strode to the castle door
And raised the knocker of massive iron

Which hung at the entrance there.
Impatient, he stamped at the portal wide,

Till a serf unbarred the halls,
And he wondered, too, at the stillness weird

Which lingered about the walls.

But a strange, wild dread stole o'er his heart,

Which had ne'er known fear before, As he noted the sombre garb of black

Which the castle porter wore.
“ Malvern! What is it? Some evil tide?

Speak, serf—to my anxious mind-
Thy lady—my Dagmar-say she is safe!

What means the dread quiet I find ?”

"Oh, mighty viking," the serf replied,

With bended head and knee;
"Alas that these poor lips should speak

The direful news to thee!
It was but yesternight, my lord,

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