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A TALE OF OLD ENGLAND
BY ROBERT DALE OWEN.
PUBLISHED AT THE OFFICE OF THE FREE ENQUIRER.
THIS SERIES OF TRACTS Is addressed to the honest and the bold; not to any man or woman, because he or she happens to be, or not to be, a Christian, or a Jew, or a Mahometan, or a Sceptic; but to the honest and the bold, however named, and whatever their opinions, by
Inies Lue Gunbat
DARBY AND SUSAN.
THERE lived, in a pretty rural village, a homely, industrious, sensible, and contented couple, Darby and Susąn.
The tidy cottage that stood beside the village green, with the moss rose-bush and the sweetbriar before it, and the gravelled path edged with rows of box that led to its rustic porch, and the honeysuckle climbing over the walls, till it half hid the little arched windows, and stretched its-fragrant tendrils up to the brown thatch—that was their cottage. It was their garden that looked so gay and neat behind that pretty cottage; and it was their cow that fed in the little pasture beside it.
Darby and Susan were, in truth, a notable and a happy couple. Nobody brought such sweet scented hay to market as honest Darby, for so his neighbors were wont to call him; and not undeservedly; for nobody gave juster weight or fuller measure than he, in all the country round. Susan's fame had gone far and wide. She was a very pattern of housewives : up with the day, at work like her own bees, and as merry as the lark when it rises in the summer sunbeams. No honey was so transparent as that from Susan's hives; no cheese or butter, in all the parish, so good, as that she made. Her 'kerchief was the whitest at the village festival, and her step the lightest at the village dance. You might hear, as you passed her door, the busy hum of her wheel; and no lass, within twenty miles of that village, spun a smoother thread, or a stronger. You might hear, too, at intervals, a song, whose merry tones cheered your very heart; and that was Susan's, the sweetest and the blithest singer in all the country side.
Darby always found a well-swept hearth, and a blazing fire, and a pair of laughing eyes, when he returned from market,
And a blazing fire and laughing eyes are excellent specifics against care and dulness. As he sat, in the
cold and weary: