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WANT OF OPPORTUNITY.

15

have succeeded, if an opportunity had offered, but the opportunity never did offer. Theophilus never had, and it is our firm belief never will have, an opportunity as long as he lives. A relation of Mrs. Wantage's, a sharp attorney, had promised that he would "etartthe boy," when he was called; and as the attorney always had briefs to give away, and really thought Theophilus a "clever chap," there was a probability of a good opening into forensic life. But—how often "but" has to be written in the lives of unsuccessful men !—but there are more calls than calls to the bar. Death is a more prompt caller than the benches of the Middle Temple. Before they called Theophilus, old Pounce, the lawyer, was called on by the old skeleton, with his scythe and hour-glass, and with him vanished Theophilus's hopes of professional employment. If he only had the chance—Theophilus used to say, when, after sitting in court in a wig and gown, acting the part of an "utter briefless," he came home to his chambers in Pump Court, and over a glass of grog chatte4 to a friend—if he had only a chance, he could do ten times better than those fellows who were making thousands a-year. He could cope with Truepoint on points of law; cross-examine better than Bluster; excite more sympathy in the jury than Tearful; and speak "out of all sight" better than Longwiud, who makes a four-hours' speech on every occasion. If he only had a chance, he would show them what stuff he was made of—and so he would—but then the chance is not to be had.

At last, not many months since, came another glimpse of opportunity. Tomkins—the little Tomkina—who "took up" Jack Hinke, and jumped into the place of first boy at school, when Theophilus was absent, is in practice as a lawyer nt Melbourne, Australia. Tomkina and Theophilus have always kept up a correspondence; and Tomkins's late epistles from the land of gold have contained appeals to Theophilus to try his luck there. There was "no end to business," Tomkins said: law was a better vocation than digging for gold. The nuggets came tumbling in fast and thick. The worst of it was, they hud no "bar" worth naming—only "two or three muffs," whom a clever fellow like Theophilus would distance in no time. Theophilus resolved to go: he had no ties here; Mrs. Wantage was-dead; business nil. Who could tell what fortunes might be in store for him at the antipodes? Perhaps—who knows—he might by-and-by be president of those "United States of Australia," for which Dr. Lang, said a late Colonial Secretary, was "knocking at the door of futurity." So Theophilus packed up wig.

gown, law-books, and all, and took his passageHe was to join the ship at Southampton; ha could spin down there by railway in a few hours, and so ease the tedious passage down the river and round the coast. We shook hands with him at the terminus when he started, and thought as the train clanked off, .' Well, he has got an opportunity at last!" We were mistaken. The next we heard of him was, that the engine had run off the line, and one carriage—the carriage in which he was—had followed its leader. Same of the occupants had their faces cut, some got bruises; only one was seriously damaged: as' the newspaper report said, 'The accident might have been extensively fatal, but the only severe sufferer is Theophilus Wantage, Esq., of the Middle Temple, who sustained a dislocation of the shoulder, and a compound fracture of the thigh. The gentleman was removed to the Railway Hotel at , where he promptly received medical assistance; and our reporter was informed that he is proceeding as favorably as could possibly be expected."

Poor Theophilus!—the ship had sailed without him, and before he could recover, there was a flight of the briefless to the promised laud! We went to see him, and he was still sanguine. He had lost that chance, but he would make another. "It is an ill wind that blows nobody good," remarked Theophilus. "I'll bring an action against the railway company, and plead my cause myself, so I'll make an opportunity out of this misfortune!" Theophilus was disappointed. The railway company paid him for his loss and suffering without incurring the expense of law. Theophilus has gone back to Pump Court, and there he still is waiting for an opportunity. Our firm conviction is, that he may wuit. He never will have an opportunity. Will may do a great deal for some men, but Fortune is too strong for him, and when he dies there ought to be inscribed on his tombstone, "He wanted an opportunity."

Female Education.—The woman whose mind has been formed on the principles of virtue, and well grounded in useful knowledge, though she may not be gifted-with the allurements of high, finished beauty, or surrounded with the splendors of wealth and rank, undoubtedly is better calculated to fulfil her duties in society, and more likely to promote her happiness, than she whose principles are unformed, whose education has been neglected.

PauiF. costs us more than hunger, thirst, and cold.

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THE MENTAL POWERS.

The mind! how glorious its mechanism! how wonderful its power! 'Mechanism f What eye hath seen its secret working or who hath analyzed its subtle structure? Power! Ah, "asthe wind that bloweth where it listeth, and men hear the sound thereof, but cannot tell whence it cometh, nor whither it goeth," even so is the power of mind. Noiselessly, unseen, it plans its work, yet how extensive the influence it exerts! Some would presume to explain the nature of this invisible agent, and thereby immortalize themselves. But imagination can give only a faint and unsatisfying clue, and we remain as ignorant as before.

Far back in the annals of onr world, its Divine Originator created man after his own likenees, and impl mted within him a mind. Not as Prometheus fabled a heavenly epark artfully purloined ; mind was a free gift to man. Oh! how angelic must have been the mind when first it came from the hands of its Maker, pure and unsullied by communion with mortals; as the eye became enraptured with the lovely Eden, how did the mind expand, and grasp with its immortal powers the beautiful mysteries which stirrounded it! Nocloud of sin or weariness dimmed its vision; b it with unfaltering gaze it explored the wonders of the universe.

Mind exists in various capacities; but great minds alone ore treasured in the world's souvenance, and stamp the age to which they belong. The mind of Columbus burst the fetters of superstition, and with persevering energy levelled the harriers which impeded its progress. Behold the •esult:—anew world opened its treasures—philosophy trinmphed. The mind of man, which had been so long imprisoned, awaked from its lethargy, and brilliant were i's achievements in the fir^t flow of its emancipation. The minds of Copernicus, Luther, Raphael, and Faust still exert an influence in the world of science and of art . The powerful mind of Newton, rich in scientific investigation, gleams out from the fifteenth century with an enduring glory.

How various are the powers of mind I In early youth, Hope seems predominant—bright, radiant. IIops—she sketches with her magic pencil glowing colors on the easel of Futurity. In perspective beam visions of unalloyed joy and happiness. She twines the laurels of Fame upon the brow of Perseverance, and scatters her choicest gems in the pathway of Science.

- Youth verges into manhood; then Memory unfolds her pinions, and wafts the mind back o'er the past. It gleans from the present bright and eunny spots, and treasures them up as fertile oases in Life's pathway to cheer the future. On her fair page is written many a fond and cherished scene, which, with potent spell, illumines the mind sighing over neglected hope and Utopian joys, while it casts around other days a halo i of light . Miny are the autographs inscribed on the leaflets of memory. It is truly

"A key

I That winds through secret wards.''

But above all the powers of mind towers Thought . The humblest flower that opes its pe; tals to the sun withers not without its notice. , It dissects its tenuous fibrcs, and gives to each a ! name. The evanescent dew-drop lingers on its I silent mission till thought explores its mystery. Anon it stays the tiny insect on the wing, and scans its delicate structure; then, soaring to the starry hosts, peoples them with life and beauty; onward in the immensity of space it descries new spheres, and links them to the chain of ; worlds. It pauses only before the Throne of i Omnipotence, and revels amid the. transcendent glories of the upper heaven. The profoundeet i elements of Nature yield the secret of their attributes to all-inquiring Thought . It collects the rays of the noonday sun, it analyzes their texture, it separatee their tints, and measures their I swiftness. It investigates the properties of in-' | visible air, dividing its gases, and weighing the t-component parts. It gathers the lightnings of ! heaven, rendering them subservient to its own J purposes, and by "those mysterious lines" I sends its creations to the remotest parts of earth, with a velocity which only its own powers can I equal. It is the bright cynosure of the social circle. There it erects a throne, and. like the beams of the rising sun on the statue of Memnon, it awakes a thrill of pleasure from kindred hearts. It breathes over the page indited by Friendship, and adds brilliancy to its communintrs.

A casket enshrines the peerless gem of mind, beautiful only ns its treasure is revealed. This

I casket, too, is constructed by the hand of Divinity, and exquisite to behold. But it is perish

'able. For when mind shall have winged its flight to the better world, its earthly tenement shall nmulder away, and its transient beauty be

: gone for ever. Then let mind be nurtured and beautified. Let the mild beams of the Sun of

THE WEDDING-RINGS.

17

Righteousness shine upon it, and water it with the dews of Truth.

"Higher and yet more high! Shake off the crumbling chain which earth would lay On your victorious whild. Mount, mount! your way Is through eternity!"

LINES

OX READING SO»R VKRS1W UNTITLED UA FAREWELL TO LOVK.'
BT ANNE C. LYNCH.

Oh, stern indeed must be that minstrel's heart,
In the world's dusty highway doomed to move,

Who with life's sunshine and its flowers can part,
Who strikes his harp and sings farewell to I'ove.

To Love I that beam that colors all our light,
As the red rays illume the light of day;

Whose rose-hue, once extinguished from the sight,
Leaves the life-landscape of a dull, coid gray.

To Love! the ethereal, the Promethean spirit,
That bids this dust with life divine be moved;

The only memory that we still inherit

Of the lost Eden where our parents roved.

Oh, hopeless bard I recall that farewell strain,
Nor from thy breast let this fond faith depart;

Recall that utterance of thy cold disdain,
Thy doubt of Love, the atheism of the heart.

THE WEDDING-RINGS.

"amd now, my dear Sophia,'' said Mrs. Stacey, as she seated herself in her open barouche, by the tide of her aristocratic friend, after a prolonged visit to Hunt and Roscoe'e, "is there any other place to which you would wish to go, or should you prefer a drive in the park on this lovely afternoon V

"Thanks," replied the young lady; "if convenient to you, I should be glad to be left at Mrs. Ellesmere's, in square."

"The very place where I wished to leave my

card. No. —, square," said Mrs. Stacey to

the footman, who stood waiting for orders: he touched his hat, sprang up behind, and the next moment the carriage was rolling along Bond street.

"You are very intimate with the Miss Ellesmcres, I believe?" observed Mrs. Stacey to her companion, as they drove on.

"Oh, I have known them since childhood. I am very intimate, especially with Matilda: I am to be one of her bridesmaids. You know, of course, that the wedding-day is fixed for tomorrow?"

"It is to be a double wedding, is it not? I heard that both of the Miss Ellesmeres are engaged."

"Oh, yes; they are both to be married on the same day: both to be dressed exactly alike— white moire antique and Brussels lace. But there is the end of the similarity," laughed the young lady, "for the one goes to Standishton, the other to St Clement's lane, in the City! Poor Marion should have her white moire dyed at once, or smoke, dust, and soot will save her the trouble I"

"Rather a low marriage?" inquired Mrs.' Stacey, in a sort of confidential whisper.

"No, not exactly low," replied Sophia, playing with her silver card-case; "the Rev. Mr. Atherton is of good family, and an excellent man, I understand." There was something in the lady's tone which made her very praise sound depreciating. "But Matilda's is a brilliant marriage," she continued; "rank, fortune, every thing that could be desired. You should only see the splendid dressing-case with which her uncle has presented her—all fitted up with gold, and such workmanship!"

"Something very different from what will ever make its appearance in St. Clement's lane, I suppose?"

"Oh, poor Marion, she will not even keep a carriage. She will never be able to stir out: walking in a city lane would, of course, be out of the question. Is it not dreadful to think of it!" said Lady Sophia, with an affected sigh.

"And so you are to be bridesmaid to the future Lady Standishton?"

"Yes, each of the sisters have four. Miss Louisa Morton and the Miss Templetous are to be my companions as Matilda's."

"And Miss Marion?"

"Oh, Mr. Atherton has sisters—six at least, I believe, and the youngest on the wrong side of thirty. Then there are cousins innumerable. Marion's only difficulty must have been in selecting among so many charming young ladies. Her bridesmaids are all to appear in white Iuublin bonnets, as the nearest approach to conformity with Matilda's, who, of course, will wear white Brussels lace."

"Do you think that Marion feels the difference between her sister's prospects and her own?"

"I don't know. Oh, she can hardly help feeling it; but if ?he does, she has too much pride to show it; I suppose that no woman would."

"Is Mrs. Ellesmere annoyed at the match?"'

"Oh! far from it, I believe. Mr. Atherton U

THE WEDDING-RINGS.

a decided favorite of hers; she km-w his mother very well. But of course she must feel very differently about Matilda's marriage. It is singular, too, that many admire Marion more than Matilda."

The conversation between the ladies was here stopped by their arrival in square.

Mrs. Stacey declined going into the house on a day when comparative strangers could scarcely be supposed to be welcome. Lady Sophia was ushered into an elegant drawing-room, where marble and inlaid tables, covered with Sevres china and Bohemian glass, luxurious-sofas and sparkling chandeliers, alabaster figures and objects of vertu, appeared reflected in endless perspective in large pier-glasses in gilded frames. Sophia could not help thinking of St. Clement's lane, when Marion rose from a sofa to welcome her.

"Dear lady-bride, I am astonished to find you here all alone, actually driven to the dull resource of a book upon the day before your wedding I Can you manage to keep your thoughts to it for a moment ?—it must be something singularly amusing. Let me see—The Visitor: all about poor ploughboys and washerwomen, I dare say. Oh!" exclaimed the young lady, dropping the book again upon the sofa, as though contact with it would soil her straw-colored kid, "that is something quite beyond me. Such a book would put me into the dismals, or send me to sleep, before I had read half a page of it!"

"You forget that I am to be a parson's wife," said Marion, with a quiet—Sophia thought a pensive—smile.

"Ah! yes: going to exchange balls and fetes, routs and concerts, for—" she paused.

"S'r nday-schools and ragged-schools, eavings'banks and clothing-clubs," said Marion, concluding the sentence for her.

Sophia took the stopper out of her smellingbottle. If the heart of the lady of fashion was capable of the sentiment of compassion, she certainly felt it now, and regarded the bride-elect as she might have done some condemned wretch proceeding to the place of execution. She made no observation, however; and, indeed, had no time to do Bo, as the folding-door at that moment opened, and Matilda appeared, followed by a footman bearing two packages, covered with silver-paper, and sealed with appropriate white

these two parcels sent by my uncle Templeton, who has 'done the dutiful' at last! One is directed to you, Marion; the other is addressed t» me."

"It needs no ghost to discover what is in the smaller parcel," observed Sophia.

"Yes," cried Matilda, "here is an unmistakable spout and handle—a silver tea-pot, depend upon it . Ah! was I not a witch?'' she exclaimed, as Marion quietly removed the muslinpaper, and confirmed her conjecture.

"What a useful present!" said Marion; "our uncle is really very kind."

"Now for mine!" cried her sister, eagerly tearing off the covering of her package. "Oh! how beautiful!—how superb!" she and Sophia exclaimed at once, as a magnificent ormolu clock was displayed to view.

"It is superb, indeed!" said Marion, placing her own less dazzling gift upon a different table.

"I wonder Mr. Templeton did not send you both the same kind of present," remarked Sophia.

There was nothing in the observation itself, yet Marion felt a slight emotion of pain as she heard it; she was displeased with herself for that feeling, and replied with a cheerfulness which was a little assumed—"Matilda's gift speaks of luxury, mine of comfort; one will measure the gay hours at Standishton, the other, I hope, give me and my husband many a refreshing cup of tea after the day's duties are over."

"I wonder if she really is happy!" thought Sophia.

"Sophia I—oh, I'm charmed to see you! I've been expecting you all this afternoon. You have just come in time to be present at the opening of

It was with mingled feelings that Marion Ellesmere retired to rest, the night before her wedding. A light cloud of self-reproach rested on her mind—a cloud so light that she scarcely knew whence it arose, or would have been aware of its presence, but for the shadow which it cast over her spirits. Her sister's smile, as she bade her good-night, had been all joy and brightness —why was it not so with the bride of Atherton I With her long bair falling over her shoulders, and her eyes shaded by her hand, Marion pat down in her own arm-chair, and gave herself up to thought .

"To-morrow—day long hoped for, yet half dreaded—how strange it is to feel it so near? I am at last on the eve of that great change which must alter the whole current of my life. What new duties, what responsibilities! But he will ever be near me—to guide, to encourage, to make the path of duty sweet to me. I shall lean on him, learn from him, be Bo proud of him! I am

THE WEDDING-KINGS.

13

indeed the most blessed of women in his love. I would not change my lot—no, not to be empress of the world I And yet—" Maria heaved a deep Bigb, then almost started at the sound of that sigh—alone as she was, with the silent night around her, the color rose to her cheek, as if in indignation at herself.

"I am not worthy to be his wifel—he whose soul is so pure, so lofty, so above the world, so superior to its vanities. Could titles, or riches, or any thing raise him? When I am beside him, how deeply I feel this 1 I seem to breathe a purer atmosphere, to see things as they are; but when I am surrounded by others, then—I know not how it is, but there is a sort of influence which they exert over me, an almost insensible power— trifles move me. I know them to be but folly and vanity, yet I cannot despise them as I ought to do. Oh! how weak I am, how worldly, how unworthy of him!" Marion leaned back in her armchair, and her long lashes were moist with her tears.

She sate long, her light burned low, every sound in the house was stilled. Suddenly the walls of her apartment appeared to recede around her; with the strange indistinctness of a dissolving view, marble pillars arose on either side, gradually assuming form and size, while the earpet upon which Marion's feet had rested, spread into a wide pavement of mosaic . And Marion was no longer alone: a strange form was beside her, of more than human stature and mien, unlike that of mortal man. His long silver hair gave to him the appearance of age, but a strange, unearthly fire glowed in his deep-set eyes, from beneath the white eyebrows that overshadowed them. His dress was dim and indistinct, ever changing in form and hue—now dark ae the lowering thunder-cloud, now likethe white mist which curls round the mountain, anon tinged as with the dying tints of the rainbow. In his hand the old man grasped a scythe, sharp and glittering. Marion felt that she was in the presence of Old Time 1

"Look yonder 1" he exclaimed, and the strange tones of his voice sounded like the wind through the arches of a ruin. Marion beheld before her what appeared a white altar of marble, sculp, tured and festooned with many-colored flowers, whose fragrance was not like those of earth.

"What see yon before you?" said Time. "What glitters on yonder marble?"

"I see naught but piles of bright golden rings, like that which I shall wear to-morrow," replied Marion. It was strange, that in the presence of

such a companion she felt neither wonder nor fear.

"And are they all alike?'' said Old Time. "All are alike. I see no difference, except that they seem classed into four different heaps." The old man laughed. How strange and unearthly sounded that laugh I "They have been fashioned by different makers," quoth he, "from different metals, for different wearers, /carry the touchstone to prove them. See the first heap —a goodly array—I trow they are Folly's workmanship. Wild, passionate lovers choose from thence, who would barter life for a flower or a smile. The flattering and the flattered draw from that pile; Folly offers, and Vanity receives them! Poets string their fancies on rings such as these, and lay them at the feet of romantic young maids, who look upon life as a drama, of which they themselves are the heroines. Stand back, for the lovely Althea approaches; she must have a ring from that pile."

Then Marion beheld advancing towards them a youthful couple, radiant with happiness and love. The bride was surpassing fair; her white veil half concealed her blushing countenance, but her soft, languishing eyes were fixed upon her companion, whose every look and tone expressed love the most ardent and tender. He kissed the white, trembling hand, upon which he placed the ring, and Marion watched them slowly, retiring to a more remote part of the temple. "Surely they are happy!"' thought she. Sh» was roused by the voice of Old Time.

"Mark you the second heap?'' said he, pointing with his glittering scythe. "These rings have been the work of Worldliness, ever zines the days when my comrade, the Earth, was young. Those who seek money, those who seek rank, who sell themselves for a coronet or an estate; maidens who dread to become old maids —the fortune-hunter, the ambitions, the prond— all draw from the second heap I Of such is Julia, whose bridal procession is drawing near. The jewels on her brow have so dazzled her fancy, that in giving herself away for a palace in Hampshire, she overlooks the fool who will be master of both 1"

Marion sighed as the gorgeous procession passed. It is a loathsome sight to behold beautysacrificing to Mammon t

"And who formed the rings that shine in llw. third heap?" said Marion to her mysterious companion.

"They are framed by Self-wi>l, and the Evi!t One has breathed a spell over them.. When, thj)

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