图书图片
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

WHO ARE YOUR COMPANIONS?

THE GRACES ALWAYS OF LITTLE STATURE. It is said to be a property of the tree-frog, that Father Bonhours remarks in his dialogues, it acquires the colour of whateverit adheres to for that the Graces were represented always of little a short time. Just so it is with men. Whom do stature, in order to show that virtue consisted you preferand choose as your friends? Do you love in little things, in a gesture, a smiie, or a rethe society of the vulgar? Then you seek to be spectful air. with the profane. In your heart you are like them.

A CANDID QUACK. Are jesters or buffoons your choice friends? He A quack doctor, on his death-bed, willed all his who laughs at folly is himself a fool, and perhaps a property to a lunatic asylum, giving as his reason very stupid one too. Do you love and seek the so- for doing so, that he wished his property to reciety of the wise and good. Is this your habit? turn to the same liberal class who had patronised Would you rather take the lowest seat among

him. them? Then you have already learned to be

THEODORE HOOK. wise and good, You may not have made In the Memorials of Andrew Crosse, the much progress, but even a good beginning is not electrician,' an anecdote is related of Theodore to be despised. Hold on your way, and seek to Hook, so famous for his improvisatore poetical be a companion of all that fear God. So you powers: 'I remember hearing Mr Crosse say shall be wise for yourself, and wise for eternity. that he was once at a party with Mr Hoos,

There is something inexpressibly sweet about when a Mr Winter was announced, a well-known little girls. Lovely, pure, innocent, ingenuous,

inspector of taxes. Hook immediately roared unsuspecting, full of kindness to brothers, ba- outbies, and everything. They are sweet little hu- Here comes Mr Winter, inspector of taxes, man flower3, diamond dew-drops in the breath I'll advise ye to give him whatever he axes, of morn. What a pity they should ever become I'll advise ye to give him withoutanyflummery, scolding women, flirts, and coquettes !

For though his name's Wiuter, his actious are A damsel was asked—When a lady and gen. summary.' tleman quarrel, and each considers the other

MORNING HYMN. at fault, which of the two ought to be the first Father, let no day to come, to advance towards a reconciliation?' Her reply Of my life's decreasing sum, was, The best-hearted and the wisest of thetwo. At thy judgment-seat appear

An acquaintance suggests the propriety of As profaned or lavish'd here ! changing the popular name needlework, to need- Thanks to thine own grace and might, less work.

Once more I behold the light. A person asked a friend how he, who lived at

Let thy favour on me shine, 80 little expense, was not rich; since he knew

While the fleeting hours decline ! he had an income of eight sovereigns per week,

That I may not sink in dread, and did not spend more than two! The friend

As I verge to death's cold sleep, answered, “Sir, I pay two; I lend two; I waste

When beside my fainting head two; and I lose two. Those I pay are to my The beloved shall bend to weep! father and mother, who are poor. Those I lend are to my son, who, I trust, will pay me when

Then, oh soothe the pang of death; I am old, as I now pay my father. Those I waste

Bless them with my latest breath. are for eating and drinking, to my wife, my

Lift us to thy heaven and thee, daughter, and myself. Those I lose go for dresses

Who hast quell'd death's victory! to my wife and daughter.'

Two little girls were disputing for precedency, The higher the character a person supports,

one the daughter of a wealthy brewer, the other the more he should regard his minutest actions. the daughter of a gentleman of small fortune:

A former Duke of Cumberland was a remark- “You are to consider, miss,' said the brewer's ably fine boy, but very sullen. The queen, his

daughter, 'that my papa keeps a coach.'--Very mother, being angry with him one day, ordered true, miss,' said the other, and you are to conhim to his chamber. Soon after he returned,

sider that he likewise keeps a dray.' and the queen asked him what he had been doing.

A Greek poet used often to present verses to "Reading the New Testament,' answered he, the Emperor Augustus, in hope of reward. The peevishly.—. What part?' said the queen.-He emperor wrote a Greek epigram, and gave it to answered, 'Where it is said, “Woman, why trou

the poet as a reward in kind. The Greek read it blest thou me?")

with high applause, and pulling out a few pence, Henry VIII. designing to send a nobleman on gave them to Augustus, saying, 'If I had more, embassy to Francis I. with a severe menace, he

you should have more.' Great laughter arising. begged to be excused, saying, 'Such a threaten- the emperor ordered the poet a sum worthy to ing message to so hot a prince as Francis I. give. might go near to cost him his life.'—. Fear not,' Woman has need of all the barriers, all the

Never said old Harry; 'if the French king should offer defences, which nature has given her! to take away your life, I would revenge you by let woman be the wooer, save as the flowers woo taking off the heads of many Frenchmen now in

with their sweetness-save as the stars woo my power.'-'But of all these heads,' replied the with their brightness-save as the summer wind nobleman, 'there may not be one to fit my woos, silently unfolding the rose's heart. shoulders.'

Judge Story said, “The first duty of a lawyer If thou wouldst have a good servant, let the is to his God and his religion; secondly, to his servant find a good master. Be not angry with country and the law; thirdly, to himself; and him too long, lest he think thee malicious; uor lastly, to his client. Never mistake the law. too soon, lest he conceive thee rash; nor too often, Lie for no man, deceive no man. Be true to the lest he count thee humorous.

court, true to your client.

MINNIE'S PRESENT.

times assert himself, and he did upon this Everybody declared that Uncle Hol- occasion. He had found his brother's lingsford would be ruined by his gene- widow in delicate health, with several rosity. But this declaration had now children; and, in order to lighten her been made for a number of years, and burden, he invited Minnie, a pretty child still be continued prosperous. His sub- of fourteen, to accompany him home on a stance was like the widow's cruse of oil visit of indefinite length. But perceiv

giving only seemed to increase it. ing that the child's sojourn with them was Every stray beggar who approached the not likely to prove a very pleasant one, farm was invited in, and fed, and warmed, as matters now stood, he approached his and sent on his way rejoicing; all the wife with a resolute air, and whispered poor relations, to the fortieth degree, cul- something that had the effect of procurtivated a warm friendship for Cousin ing Minnie a sort of welcome that struck John, and paid him frequent visits in her as not over cordial. proof of their esteem; and at Christmas But Uncle Hollingsford bad gained his and Thanksgiving times the family circle point; Minnie was regularly established collected around him was perfectly pa- at the farm, and if not much noticed by triarchal.

her aunt, she soon became a great favourThis propensity was a subject of never- ite with her uncle. And not only with ceasing uneasiness to Aunt Ruth. She him, but with all who came to the house; prophesied again and again that they for she was a sunny-tempered little thing, would all came to the poor-house; but making life and gladness wherever she her husband only laughed, and said that went. 'he must give his cups of cold water;' The huge kitchen-fire burned all the and, as the children grew up, and daugh- more brightly for the snapping cold that ters married, and sons went 'out west,' reigned without; and the kitchen itself and all prospered and flourished, and the sent forth a steam of savoury viands infifarm remained unsold, Aunt Ruth won- nitely refreshing to a hungry palate. It dered more and more how it happened was almost breakfast-time; and punctual they had bread enough, and began to as the clock, the gaunt figure of Ichabod think that there must be some witchcraft Poole strode into the kitchen, and sank in it.

into the accustomed seat by the chimneyBut Uncle Hollingsford had just per- corner. petrated an act, the enormity of which Of all Hollingsford's protegés, this was disturbed his domestic peace for a long the one with whom Aunt Ruth had least while; and sometimes it seemed doubt- patience. For ten years he had not ful if the sky ever would be cleared. He missed a morning, unless detained by illsuddenly took it into his head to look up ness; and yet be always came in with the the widow of a brother who had been same observation that, 'as he happened dead several years; and knowing that to be passing by, he thought he would poor Job never had possessed a knack for just drop in. acquiring worldly goods, he resolved to Ichabod had been a respectable farmer; examine into the condition of his family. but being what the country people call Without telling Aunt Ruth of his plans, 'thriftless,' he had suffered things to go he went off very quietly by himself—but to wreck and ruin, until there remained he returned not as he came.

to himself and wife only the dilapidatedAunt Ruth had prophesied that no looking red cottage, and the small strip good would come of this journey; but, of land around it. People said that when the waggon stopped, and she saw breakfasts and dinners were doubtful at her husband lift out a little girl, she could the red cottage, and suppers almost unscarcely believe her own eyes: "To think heard of; and it was maliciously whisthat, after raising a family of eight chil- pered that Ichabod was very much indren, and getting them well off her hands, clined to be 'neighbourly' at meal-times. John should go and bring home such a He always went to Uncle Hollingsford's pest as that! It was too much for flesh for breakfast; but, upon being invited and blood to stand !' So she looked into the dining-room, invariably observed coldly, upon poor Minnie, who shrank that there was no occasion;" wife would back into herself, and eyed her husband be expecting him at home,' &c. This severely.

was a regular part of the performance, But Uncle Hollingsford could some- and it required considerable exertion to

D

dislodge him from the chimney-corner. As he went home that morning, he Aunt Ruth scarcely attempted to smother began revolving in his own mind a plan her indignation, when, after declaring for her benefit. John Hollingsford was a that'he didn't want anything,'' he wasn't good sort of a fellow, and as he had now hungry,' &c., he would sit down to the plen- taken breakfast there several times (!), tiful table, and sweep off all before him. he believed that he would make the

The family was broken up and scat- child a present, by way of testifying his tered, and sons and daughters would re- gratitude. Christmas was rapidly apturn to visit the home of their childhood, proaching, and it would be an agreeable so changed, that they could scarcely be surprise. recognised; but there was Ichabod in just Bright and early, Christmas morning, the same seat, and just the same words Ichabod made his appearance with a coin his mouth, as when they left him three vered basket, and in the basket there was years ago. Everybody said that it was a a Maltese kitten.

Minnie was enrapperfect farce; but Uncle Hollingsford was tured; her heart fairly overflowed with immoveable, and insisted upon treating love to all sorts of pets, and the kitten Ichabod with politeness.

was a perfect little beauty. Just the It was the morning after Minnie's ar- right size to be graceful—it was plump rival, and her uncle desired her to inform and sleek, and the very colour to wear a Mr Poole that breakfast was ready. This blue riband around its neck. she did very sweetly; and Ichabod, mak- After gratefully thanking Mr Poole, ing a feint of rising, replied:

Minnie displayed her treasure in triumph; 'I was just going, my dear-time that but, at sight of the kitten, Aunt Ruth's I was off, long ago. Stop to breakfast! cup of wrath was overflowing. She Oh no, thank you—my wife will be wait-couldn't bear the sight of a cat-she deing for me.

tested cats—it would always be putting Minnie returned to the dining-room, its little dirty nose into the milk and and innocently repeated what she sup- cream-and it was just exactly like Ichaposed to be Mr Poole's refusal. To her bod to give a present that would soon eat great surprise, her uncle laughed out, and its own head off! her aunt had a very queer expression Minnie looked as frightened as though about the mouth.

she had actually expected to see the kit'Waiting what ?' she exclaimed, in a ten perform this feat, and cast an implortone of cutting sarcasm; ‘maybe they're ing look at her uncle, when Aunt Ruth going to have fritters for breakfast, and muttered something about sending it back they'll be spoiled-he'd better go.' where it came from.

Come, come, wife,' replied Uncle Hol- ‘Oh no,' replied her husband; 'I have lingsford, when he had stopped laughing, too much respect for Ichabod's feelings to 'this is too bad—they can't help being do that, and the little animal will be a poor.

great comfort to Minnie. You remember 'Yes, they can help it,' said Aunt Ruth, Whittington and his cat?' he continued; tartly, just as well as you, or I, or any- perhaps this one will bring us good body else can help it. They needn't luck.' quarter themselves on their neighbours, Aunt Ruth looked very disdainful, and at any rate—I should think he'd be scarcely spoke to Minnie all day. But ashamed of himself!'

Minnie was used to these fits, and became Minnie was again despatched to the too much absorbed in her kitten to feel kitchen, with an imperative summons to troubled about anything. Mr Poole. She soon returned with his

"Well !' exclaimed Aunt Ruth,'I hope 'He said there was no occasion.' you are satisfied now! I told you that Laughing more heartily than ever at it would come to this; and I'm only surMinnie's innocence and perplexed look, prised that it didn't come long ago!' Uncle Hollingsford went to the kitchen, This was but poor consolation for a man as he had done for ten years, and who had just been confiding to his wife marched Ichabod Poole in to break- the story of his misfortunes, and Uncle fast. Minnie was astonished at the rapid Hollingsford looked into the fire, and disappearance of the viands; but Ichabod sighed. But all attempts at consolation, had taken quite a fancy to the child, and unless they came in the shape of bankregarded her very benignly.

bills, would have proved unavailing; for

answer

Uncle Hollingsford, led away by his ge- teach school, or do something to help nerous heart, had indorsed largely for a him. neighbour in distress, and the neighbour Kitty was making a terrible scratching had gone down, dragging his benefactor against the boards, and Minnie endeawith him; and now the friend of so many voured to call her off. She really believed unfortunates saw himself threatened with that she had discovered a mouse it would a sheriff's sale, and he and his wife driven be horrible to see her kill and eat it, like forth, in their old age, from the home other cats—she should not love her a bit which had sheltered them for so many after that—and Minnie tried to pull her years.

away. But kitty was very busy scratchWhere were all those whom he had ing something out from under a board; helped out of similar difficulties? Those and, having put in one velvet paw, she who had eaten at his table, and slept be succeeded in dislodging a dark-coloured neatb his roof, in the days of his prospe- roll, that was certainly not a mouse, nor rity? His wife asked this in a cold, cut- anything else alive. ting tone, that made him wince, for man's Minnie examined it with trembling ingratitude is hard to bear.

fingers, and found bank-bills to theamount 'It is strange,' said Uncle Hollingsford, of 5000 dollars! With glowing cheeks, musing, 'that father left no more money. and eyes sparkling with excitement, she There was little beside the stock, and rushed into the room where her uncle sat, everybody was surprised at it-hé was buried in his gloomy thoughts; and payalways so saving.'

ing no attention to her aunt's exclamaIf you had copied him in that respect, tion of 'Marion Hollingsford ! go back it would be better for us now,' replied this instant, and shut the door!' she Aunt Ruth.

placed the soiled and crumpled notes in Uncle Hollingsford shook his head. his listless hands. He did not dwell upon his father's weak- Where did you get these ?' said he, so ness, but everybody knew his miserly dis- calmly that Minnie feared he cared very position; and even in his last moments little about them. he groaned at the idea of parting with But when the story was told, Minnie his cherished possessions. When he died, and her pet were both lifted in Uncle people said that there would be gold and Hollingsford's arms, and his tears rained bank-bills found in broken teapots and the down upon the bright curls, as he whistoes of old stockings; but as very few such pereddiscoveries were made, they puzzled over 'Minnie, do you know that you and it in much perplexity. Perhaps it was kitty have saved your old uncle from being this example before his eyes that led his turned upon the world? Ruth !' said he, son to the opposite extreme; for certain looking reproachfully at his wife. it was that no two could be more unlike. It was foreign to Aunt Ruth's nature,

It was a mild day, and Minnie, accom- but she gave way, for once, and folded panied by her kitten, had gone to the old Minnie in the first warm embrace that garret, whose mysterious nooks she loved she had ever bestowed upon her. to explore; and there she could have a 'I wish that Ichabod Poole was here,' romp with kitty, in the full enjoyment of said Uncle Hollingsford. 'Had it not being beyond the reach of Aunt Ruth's been for his somewhat unwelcome prereprimand.

sent, this money would still have been Uncle Hollingsford had been very grave lying idle. . I should really like to see of late; and half-anticipating something him.” dreadful, she scarcely knew what, Minnie 'Can't you wait until to-morrow mornleaned listlessly against the rough beams, ing?' said Aunt Ruth, so drily, that it and watched the gambols of the Maltese extorted from her husband the first hearty kitten, who seemed challenging her to laugh he had indulged in for a long participate in the fun. But Minnie was while. thinking of other things; and she fixed The farm, of course, was not sold, and her large melancholy eyes on the blue sky, the very singular manner in which it had that seemed so near the garret window, been preserved travelled about like wildand wondered if Uncle John was in want fire, and Minnie and her kitten became of money. She had overheard some words objects of the greatest curiosity. Ichabod that led her to suspect this; and she now began coming to dinner, on the began to think that she might go and strength of his gift; and if he had taken up his residence there altogether, Uncle armed all Minnie's indignation, in spite of Hollingsford would, doubtless, have made herself,'that you will pardon my unintenhim welcome.

tional rudeness? I expected to find in the

owner of the cat some indigent old lady, Time passed on; the kitten had grown or thoughtless boy, to whom a few dollars into a cat, and Minnie had become a would prove an irresistible allurement; young lady. Her cousins laughingly de- and, as I had taken a great fancy to the clared that she had entirely superseded animal, I concluded to try the experithem in the affections their parents; ment.' and a stranger would certainly bave sup- And I,' replied Minnie, frankly, 'exposed that she was the pet daughter of pected to see, in the finder of Fortuna, a the house.

disagreeable, purseproud individual—but One day, an advertisement, to the fol- whether lady or gentleman I could not lowing effect, appeared in 'The Village decide.? Organ,' published in the small town near The half compliment conveyed in this which the Hollingsfords lived.

answer, brought a look of gratitude from 'Lost, on Thursday last, a Maltese cat, the visiter that made Minnie wish she with a blue riband around its neck. On had not said it; but, just as an awkward returning the same to the office of 'The crisis was approaching, Uncle Hollingsford Organ,' or Westlake Farm, the finder entered the room, and politely saluted the will be suitably rewarded.'

stranger, whom he recognised as the new The next week 'The Organ' contained proprietor of a handsome country-seat on the following answer: "The finder of the the other side of the village. Maltese cat, advertised in last Saturday's The visiter introduced himself as Mr 'Organ,' is extremely anxious to retain it. Enılay, and at once entered into an easy What would the owner consider a suffi- and agreeable conversation with the mascient inducement for parting with the ter of the house. The story of the kitten animal?'

was told and commented upon; and the Minnie was perfectly indignant, both stranger learned, by adroit questions, that at the insult, and at being separated so Uncle Hollingsford's circumstances were long from her pet; so she sat down and by no means flourishing. He immediately wrote: 'If the finder of the Maltese cat does expressed his want of an agent to overnot immediately restore her to her right- see his place, which he pronounced to be ful owner, he or she will be searched out sadly neglected, and acknowledged himself and exposed before the community. totally unqualified for the office. He did

When the paper containing this threat not lose sight of Minnie's speaking eyes, appeared, it brought a reply from the which rested upon her uncle almost beculprit in person. Aunt Ruth was look- seechingly—this was just the thing for ing forth from the sitting-room window, him, it would require so little labourwhen she suddenly exclaimed, 'What on but Uncle Hollingsford was not the one earth is that handsome stranger coming to recommend himself

, and Mr Emlay was here for? I declare,' she continued, 'if obliged to ask him point blank. he hasn't got Fortuna in his arms!' This After awhile it was all arranged; and was the name the kitten had received on the stranger departed with a warm invithat memorable day when it saved the tation to renew his visit. Westlake Farm.

'Fortuna again!' exclaimed Uncle Hol'Run, Minnie,' continued her aunt, and lingsford, as he related to his wife this take him into the parlour.'

fresh piece of luck. But Aunt Ruth Minnie opened the door with a height- glanced at Minnie in a very significant ened colour, and a somewhat elevated manner, and looked little disposed to give head, for the offer of buying her favourite the cat much credit this time. was still fresh in her mind. The visiter, 'If Ichabod were here now, I could a handsome man of thirty-five, with an almost give him a hug,' continued the old air of foreign travel, doffed his hat with a lowly obeisance to the beautiful apparition

He will be here tomorrow morning,' before him; and, perhaps, he too felt con- replied Aunt Ruth, as drily as ever. scious of his misdemeanour, for he was Uncle Hollingsford entered at once upon decidedly embarrassed, as he followed his 'agency,' which turned out to be very Minnie into the room.

little beyond a name and a salary; and 'I hope,' said he, with a smile that dis- | Mr Emlay availed himself to the full

man.

« 上一页继续 »