the thickened sap from the bark, to form heart-wood.

(6.) The function of the HEARTWOOD is to give solidity and strength to the stem, that it may not be blown down by the wind. Now, what is the function of the stem, altogether, I wonder?

P. I will say that myself. (7.) The chief functions of the STEM are to elevate the leaves, flowers, and fruit, into the best position for receiving light and air; and to convey the sap in both directions.



Он, raise me in the bed, mother, and let me look once more
Upon the bonny twinkling stars that gem the blue sky o'er.
As brightly as they smiled upon my childhood's opening flower,
They will keep smiling, smiling still, upon my dying hour.

Oh, glorious and bright, mother, these fair stars still will shine;
But they'll smile another night, mother, for other eyes than mine.
You'll look upon them, mother, as you watch beside my bed,
And they'll keep smiling, smiling on, o'er the mourner and her dead.

I've loved their gentle light, mother, since I first knew their ray: You remember how I wondered once why they never shone by day; How I used to watch them from the spot where my dead brother lies, And think those tiny sparkling things must be the angels' eyes.

They'll shine as bright as now, mother, when I am dead and gone;
When the turf is on my brow, mother, and the moss upon my stone.
Do you think that it is true, mother, as some old stories tell,"
That the spirits of the pardoned ones in those pure orbs may dwell?

You will be childless now, mother, and widowed and alone;
It must be hard to live on earth when all we loved are gone-
To listen all the day in vain for one kind household tone-
To know the world holds not one heart that we can call our own.

You'll think of me, my mother, in the solemn twilight hour,
When the dew is on the rustling leaf, and on the folded flower;
When the quiet earth lies sleeping, when the weary birds are still,
And nothing but the cool night-wind is whispering on the hill.

When the lady moon is looking down o'er mountain, moor, and lea,
You will sit in her holy light, and sadly think of me;
And when the stars I loved so well shine out so sweet and fair,
You'll look upon their glorious home, and think that I am there.

R. A. P.



L. You said, papa, that Henry | he required by treating his enemade certain plans to increase mies badly. Instead of pardonhis power; but he was hindered, ing the nobles who had fought in the early part of his reign, for Richard III., he confiscated by plots and conspiracies-by their property to the crown, by the young Earl of Warwick, which is meant that he took it Lambert Simnel, and Perkin from them, and kept it himself. Warbeck. In some cases he made them pay heavy fines instead; but both proceedings were unfair.

P. Yes; and I said that when he had rid himself of his enemies, he proceeded with the plans he had formed.

How did he proceed? He thought to himself, "I want, first, to humble these haughty barons and priests who have disturbed my predecessors, and to raise the independence of the people; but I must first be independent of them all. Other kings have depended on the nobles and the people for their supplies of money, but I will save my money, and be independent. The less I trouble them for money the better; they will be more inclined to obey me."

Now, Willie, I call such a thought a sagacious one. The methods which Henry adopted for raising money also showed great sagacity; but I am sorry to add that they were not wise ones; they were not right, and no one is truly wise who does wrong.

W. So that he wasn't wise always. Well! no more was

King Solomon.

P. Nor any one else. No man is always wise. Henry first began to raise the money

So also, after the rebellions of Simnel and Warbeck, Henry took the estates of those who had rebelled, and fined others, without proving that they were guilty: this second means was as unfair as the first.

The third means of gaining riches was not a very proper one. He pretended that he was going to make war with France, summoned the Parliament to grant him supplies for the purpose, and on receiving the money he put it in his pocket and made peace.

The history of this proceeding does Henry great discredit. He declared in Parliament, with his own mouth, that King Charles of France was a disturber of the Christian world, because he had cheated the Emperor Maximilian by not marrying his daughter. He pretended to be much shocked at such wickedness, and said that now he was determined to conquer the French, and claim the crown as his rightful inheritance.

The unsuspecting people were much excited by this; the war

like spirit of the nobles was aroused once more. From one end of England to the other were heard the magical words, CRESCY! POICTIERS! AGINCOURT! and all said they were ready to fight such battles over again. Some of the nobles made preparations extensive enough to ruin themselves, and large bodies of troops were rapidly levied.

Those who knew Henry better, however, did not believe that he meant to fight: they said that he only wanted to make a trade of the war. The suspicions of many more were aroused when the king let the spring and summer go by without taking the field. At last, in October, he could scarcely help embarking for France, for there was ready for him a magnificent army of 25,000 foot and 1,600 horse. Accordingly he sailed for Calais, settled there, and pretended to besiege Boulogne. While the sham siege was going on, he bribed his principal officers with gold which he had received from the French king; they then agreed to a treaty, and persuaded the army that this was the best thing to be done.

The truth was, that the treaty had been secretly made by Henry with King Charles, three months before the army set out; and the French themselves knew that the landing of Henry's soldiers was a mockery on his part. Henry did more than make a treaty for peace; he made a bargain with Charles, selling him all the rights to the

provinces of France which the English had gained by their former conquests. For these claims the French agreed to pay Henry £200,000. Thus the king was a double gainer. He pocketed the money which the English paid him for making war, and all that the French had paid him for making peace. And he not only gained money, but increased his power over the nobles; for many of them had nearly ruined themselves

they had sold the greater part of their estates, expecting to make greater profits by the conquest of France.

The fourth way in which Henry raised money was more just. He caused many taxes on articles of commerce to be paid to him; but of this there was not so much complaint, for, as you will soon see, few kings have done so much as he did to improve commerce.

The fifth plan, which was carried out in the latter part of his reign, was a very unjust one; he extorted money from his subjects by a series of extraordinary fines; some were called Benevolences. The citizens of London alone were forced to pay him a benevolence of £10,000, when the war with France was proposed. Other cities had to purchase liberties and privileges, while he also made his subjects buy confirmations of their titles. The people, Lord Bacon says, were perpetually pilfered by an army of tax-gatherers and informers. He also raised money by calling in the coin, and by re-coining it, and raising it and lowering

it at his pleasure. These proceedings were carried out by two cunning lawyers, named Epsom and Dudley. The unjust, oppressive acts of these two men I cannot stop to record. Persons were committed to prison without being brought to trial, that they might purchase their freedom with heavy sums called compositions. They kept up an army of spies and informers in every part of the kingdom, and seized men's lands and goods without caring to recognise either law or justice.

By these means, however unjust, Henry became immensely rich. He cared neither for nobles, parliament, nor people; and made whatever laws seemed best for his kingdom's good.

I told you last week of the indifference of the Parliament to their duties; so in the latter part of the king's reign he dispensed with their help altogether-no parliament was held for seven years. The only important meetings were those in which they granted him a "benevolence" for the pretended war with France, and another in which they granted him £30,000 for the marriage portion of his eldest daughter.

Henry, being thus rich and independent, gained the power which he sought. His principal means of depressing the nobles was by a very important law which enabled them to sell their estates, or to divide their property, which they could not do before. The nobles were

much pleased at this law, for it enabled them to procure “ready money" to spend; and you heard how, when preparing for the war with France, many ruined themselves. The law was, indeed, fatal to the feudal system, as the crafty Henry had foreseen. Its effects were felt by the next generation, for the great estates of the barons were gradually dismembered, and the property of the commons and the merchants who had money was increased.

Henry also lessened the power of the barons by forbidding them to keep so many retainers, who (as in the case of Warwick the king-maker) helped in rebellions against the government, and in riots and disorder. This law was carried out with the greatest rigour and vigilance. Henry had on one occasion been entertained with great magnificence by his favourite general, the Earl of Oxford. On the king's departure, the earl drew up all his numerous retainers in splendid array, to do him honour. In reply to the king's question as to whom the train of people belonged, the earl smiled and confessed that they were his retainers, who had assembled because he was honoured by the royal presence. At this the king started back, and replied, "By my faith, my lord, I thank you for your good men; but I must not allow my laws to be broken in my presence." He then caused Oxford to pay 15,000 marks as a composition" for this offence.





"After luncheon we pro

"Do you remember how, after ceeded on our visit to the taking a walk through London Thames. with my friend on the first day of my visit, he made arrangements for the rest of the week? "On the second day he was to give me a general account of London in the morning, and we were to pay a visit to the Thames in the afternoon.

"On the third day, we were to visit the ancient buildings. "On the fourth day, the modern buildings.

"On the fifth day, that most modern building, the Great Exhibition; and

"On the sixth day, the various suburbs of London.

"You have now heard all the general particulars which my friend gave me; and I consider that he did a very good morning's work. His account included the size of London-the streets and houses-the number of people-the way in which they earn their daily bread-the quantity of food they eat-the manner in which they are supplied with water, fire, and light

"Cab!' said my friend, on reaching the first cab-stand. 'Waterloo!" he added, to the cabman, who, instead of taking us to that famous village in Belgium, drove us to the South Western Railway Terminus at Waterloo Bridge. He was, however, quite right in doing so; for in less than five minutes after our arrival, we were spinning along behind an engine which was taking us to RICHMOND.


"See,' said my friend, taking out the map while we were in the train, here is Richmond, on the banks of the Thames. Now trace the Thames on the map to its source. see that it divides Middlesex from Surrey, runs between Berkshire and Buckinghamshire, between Berkshire and Oxfordshire, between Wiltshire and Gloucestershire, and through part of Gloucestershire itself to a spot near Cirencester, where there is a little spring called Thames-head. Its entheir sanitary condition- tire length from this spring to the highways-burial-grounds the mouth is about 220 miles. -means of conveyance-moral "It is not, however, a broad condition-policemen-prisons and deep river in all parts. -savings' banks hospitals, Large ships of 1,200 tons burden schools, &c. By the time he had finished these numerous particulars, he was much exhausted; and I was not sorry to hear that luncheon would be ready in a few minutes.

[ocr errors]

cannot proceed higher than Blackwall; those of 800 tons can reach St. Katherine's Docks, which we shall soon talk about. Small steamers can travel as far as Richmond, the place to

« 上一页继续 »