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feelings towards the kind masters and mistresses almost drives me crazy. Kate, don't you think your that God, who knows how unable you are to take care master would let you buy your time? I've saved up of yourself, has provided you with : don't you know, some few hundred dollars; and, with care, I might in my dear hearers, that this is being discontented, and time raise sufficient to buy you out and out.' that you thereby lose the great gain that godliness O William, I didn't want to tell you; I thought to associated with content would bring you.'
let you find it out when I was gone; but I must tell When I heard this, I was almost choked with indig- you now, and let my heart break at once. William,' nation ; but when the preacher went on to assure liis said she, whilst her sobs almost choked her utter. beloved brothers and sisters, that their masters and ance, you 're too late. God help us both to bear it. mistresses stood to them in the place of God, and William, I'm sold. Master sold me on Saturday to ought to be obeyed as cheerfully—that when their his son-in-law, and I'm going to Missouri with him skins were torn from their backs by the scourge, it next Wednesday: was a chastisement from on high-and that when After this revelation there was a long silence, broken husbands, wives, and children were sold away from only by the sobs of Kate, and the half-stifled groans of each other, it should only teach them pious and con- the young man. tented submission-I had much to do to retain my 'O Kate,' said he, ‘lias it come to this at last, after seat. At length the sermon was finished; and then, all my hopes, and all my struggles. When you are whilst a collection was being made, we had another gone, Kate, there will be nothing to bear me uppiece from the choir, in which a solo was admirably nothing;' and in his agony, tlie young man sobbed as sung by one of the quadroon sisters; then came the loud and uncontrollably as poor Kate herself. benediction and dismissal.
Kate,' said he suddenly, “are you afraid to try to "If we hurry out,' said Stokes, we shall have an escape ; have you ever thought of running away? If I opportunity of seeing the two gals as they leave the am willing to try it, will you run the risk with me?' church.
'I'd run any risk with you, or for you; but the We accordingly pressed forward to meet them chance of our getting off is so small, that it seems as they descended the stairs. They were sweet-look- folly to try.' ing creatures, with a marked resemblance to each I know the chances are against us; but we are to be other. Kate, the taller, was a trifle handsomer than separated anyhow ; so, if we failed, we should be no the other; her lips were not so full, and her face worse off: and we might succeed-we are both so very more perfectly oval; and a shade of pensiveness fair, that we might pass for white.' rested on her whole physiognomy, that did not dis O William! I am afraid not-every one knows us tinguish the countenance of her sister. But they had here: my face, in particular, is as well known as any the same wavy black hair, deep hazel eyes, and fair in Richmond. No, no; it won't succeed—we should complexions; and when they smiled, the strong like- be detected at once; besides, we have no friend who ness between them was brought more strikingly out: would help us- no way of procuring any disguise. Do
Stokes and I by some means became separated by you know any one who would help us ?' the crowd, and I suffered myself to be borne on the “No, Kate, not a soul. There are many I know who current that eet strongly from the church.
would not lay a straw in the way of our escape, yet It was early spring-time, and the air was balmy they dare not run the risk of assisting us. No; my with the breath of roses and lilacs. I felt glad to plan should be, to go boldly up to the station at night, escape from the close air of the church, and had no and ask for tickets: in the confusion and hurry of inclination to go to my hotel, so I determined to departure, the chance is we might get them; then, wander for a while to take a look at the city.
nce away from Rich nd, I have but slight fear of On I went through quiet streets, pausing now and detection.' then to peer into gardens and admire their luxuriant William, the risk is too great; we should be certain beauty. At last I found myself in a retired spot upon to be detected at the station. As I said before, we are the outskirts of the town, where a clear stream of both too well known; we must be disguised in some water dashed over a bed of shining pebbles.
way. O God, if we could only find some friend to Being a little fatigued with my walk, I sat down aid us!' upon a large stone by the water-side, and listened to I had been on the point of offering my services the musical ripple of the creek. I had been enjoying several times during their conversation, but had my solitude for some time, when I was aroused by the restrained myself. Now, however, I could stand it sound of approaching footsteps. I was a few feet no longer, and rushing precipitately from my confrom the pathway, and concealed by the bushes that cealment, exclaimed: 'I'm your man—I'll be your fringed the edge of the stream. As the footsteps friend—I'll stand by you to the last; just tell me approached nearer, I began to distinguish voices in what to do-tell me how to help you, and I'll do it in earnest conversation.
spite of all the slaveholders in Richmond.' I had not It's of no use, William,' said a voice which I calculated the effect my abrupt appearance would proinstantly recognised to be that of Kate, one of the twin duce, and was therefore greatly shocked to see poor quadroons; it is better, far better that we should Kate sink fainting on the ground. William, who was remain as we are. We have no security that if we the young man pointed out by Stokes as the property were married to-morrow we might not be separated of gamblers, looked the personification of fright, and the next day for ever. No, no; it's folly to think of for a moment seemed undecided whether to run away it; you must give up all hope.'
or jump into the creek. “Don't be alarmed, my good Give up all hope, Kate! that's impossible. Hope is fellow,' said I, raising Kate from the ground; “I'm an all that's kept me alive for years: when that fails me, Englishman, thank God! You need not have the least I shall cut my throat, or do some other desperate fear of me. I hate slavery as much as you do; and thing.'
I'll help you to escape with all my heart, without O William, William, for God's sake, do not talk inquiring about the consequences.' in that rash way: my heart is almost broken now; The young man looked at me suspiciously as he took pray, don't you add to my sufferings—I have enough Kate from my arms, exclaiming : "God will judge to bear.'
between us if you betray us, for my blood will be on Kate, I've something to bear too. Don't I love you your head !' Then turning to the reviving girl, he better than my own life?-haven't I waited for years, continued : 'Kate, love, look up; here's hope come at in hope of some favourable change in our fortunes; and last-don't be frightened ; the gentleman says he'll then to hear you talk so calmly of my giving you up be our friend. He's an Englishman, Kate.'
Kate looked at me with beseeching eyes.
frightful efforts to sustain myself, I sunk exhausted *For God's sake, don't betray us, sir!' said she. into the sea, and woke to find I had fallen out of bed, It was only idle talk-we can't escape, sir; and we and that my head had got into the foot-bath I had know it.'
been using the night before. "But I say you shall escape !' said I indignantly. The next morning, William made his appearance * Do I look like a liar and a traitor ? I tell you again, punctually at the hour appointed. He looked susI'll break all the laws on the statute-book of Virginia piciously round him, after accepting the chair I had but I'll get you off, if you will only trust me. Only placed for him, and hesitatingly whispered: 'I think tell me how I can serve you. I heard all your conver- I've hit upon a plan that will be successful, if we can sation, and I'm deeply interested in you. Here my carry it out. I discovered it by the merest accident. hand upon it!' Kate took the hand I extended her, I was in a confectionary kept by an Italian, and while and as she held it, leaned her head on her lover's I was buying some fruit, an organ-grinder came in. shonlder, and wept.
He was dumb, and his wife, an English woman, I Where can I find you again ?' asked William. think, carried on the conversation. I find they are 'Here,' said I, is my card; I'm at the Exchange going to remain here, and give up going about the Hotel.'
country; and she wanted to get work in the store. "I will come to you to-morrow, and let you know The man is of my size, and wears his beard very much what you can do for me; but, for Heaven's sake, sir, as I do; and it struck me that if I could get his don't betray us! Oh don't be angry,' continued he, organ and clothes for my disguise, I could make free as he saw my face flush; 'we have never received with a dress that our cook owns, which in the pattern anything but oppression and unkindness from white and colour is very like the woman's. I in his clothes, people, so you should not be surprised if we hesitate and Kate in a dress similar to hers, we might escape; to trust one immediately.'
but the difficulty would be to get the organ and the * True, true,' I replied, as I wrung Kate's hand; 'I clothes, and it's at this point I want your help: if don't wonder; but I hope I shall be able to prove that we can get them, we will run the risk. I followed we are not all alike. Good-bye;' and I walked slowly the man and his wife liome; here is the number of up the lane, turning occasionally to look at them until the house, and the name of the street.' their forms became indistinguishable in the dusk of • A capital plan-capital!' said I. 'I'll go at once coming night.
and hunt them up. But how shall I let you know if Night had fallen ere I reached the hotel. I found I succeed?' Stokes in a towering rage,
up and down the “That's easily arranged. Are both these hats apartment. He saluted me, on my entrance, with : yours ?' asked William. You're a pretty fellow, now, ain't you? Here have Yes, both.' I been waiting without my supper, expecting you “Then let this be the signal: you come to the saloon every moment in the last two hours; and you have where I attend the billiard-tables—White's Saloon 'tis been racing all over Richmond, I suppose. Do you called-if you get the things, wear the white hat; and think, sir, that every one is, like yourself
, able to eat in that case you 'll bring them to where we met enough at one meal to last through the week ? I'm yesterday evening. We'll be there at eight o'clock no bear, sir—I don't live upon my own fat!' Ito-night. I've trusted you, sir: I may almost say my mildly ventured to remark, that he could eat with life is in your hands. If you are not true to me'his own mouth, and could have gone to tea without "Never fear,' replied I. “You 'll find me all right; me;' whereupon I heard him grumble something about rely on it, I'll do my best.' impertinence and ingratitude, as he led the way to Here, sir, is the money for the organ and tickets. the tea-room.
Good-bye; remember I've trusted you.' We did get tea; and such a tea as that was can Everything went on well, as was projected; and at be got up nowhere but on that side of the Atlantic. the appointed time I was at the place of rendezvous There was the huge pile of buckwheat cakes—a with the organ and clothes, and Kate and William winter delicacy, that had lingered a little beyond its very soon made their appearance. appointed season, that it might catch a glimpse of the • Come now, my good fellow,' said I, there is no fine white perch and delicious shad that had made time for parley. Here are the clothes ; slip them on their appearance with the early spring-flowers; there over your own.' was corn-bread, corn-dodgers, flap-jacks, and jonny- William hastily did as I directed; then handing him cake, Indian pone, and corn pound cake-in fact, the tickets, I said : Indian meal in every description of cake that American You have twenty minutes to reach the car3 ; here ingenuity could invent. Then the oysters, stewed, fried, are the tickets. Now, good-bye, God bless you ; I and pickled-oh, you little copper-flavoured natives of shall come and see you off; but it will be at a respectful Old England, hide your diminished heads! I thought distance—we must not recognise each other.' I had tasted oysters before I left my native shores, Kate took my hand. I saw by the light of the moon, but on this eventful night I was cured of my vanity that had just come out, that her eyes were glistening. I took two of the fried on my plate, and they covered 'Good-bye, man or angel, I don't know which to it. I tasted them; and then, to use Stokes's language, call you! Good-bye. Look above,' said she, with a 'went in for myself.' I ate 'em stewed, I ate 'em raw, trembling voice-He rewards.' I ate 'em pickled ; and then I ate 'em fried, and com- William could only press my hand again and again menced on the stewed again, till the black waiters - gratitude had made him speechless. grinned; and Stokes told me he was ashamed of me, I followed them at a safe distance, saw them enter and expected they would charge me double board. the cars, which a few moments after were flying with I ate a respectable tea, or supper, as they call it in lightning speed toward the north star. America, and then went to bed, and had a respectable A week passed away, and still there came no tidings nightmare. I dreamed I was a locomotive, with a of the fugitives. I began to be anxious, and was daily pair of brazen wings, and a furnace in my breast; and inquiring of Stokes whether anything had been disthat Kate and William got astride of my back, and covered respecting them, as their escape was a topic I flew off with them, with all the authorities of of great discussion in Richmond. Richmond in pursuit. I soared about in my dream * Have you heard any news ?' said I. until I had got quite out to sea, and was flying away • What kind of news ?' answered Stokes. to England. The chalk cliffs of my old home were About Kate and William.' visible when I began to tire; and after the most • Kate and William be darned,' said Stokes wrathfully; ‘you are always bothering me about Kate and a group of three persons were standing as it moved William. One would think you were part owner of away; they waved their handkerchiefs and kissed their both. No, I know nothing about them. One thing hands. William Sykes, his wife Kate, and sister Rachel, I do know, that the sister, Rachel, is to be sold at formed the group, and the prepossessing man in the auction to-morrow, unless previously disposed of by cars was your very humble servant. private sale.' I said nothing more to Stokes, but put on my hat
THE CUCKOO MYSTERY. and bolted from the room.
In ten minutes after, I was at the well-known estab- | The truth of Lord Bacon's saying, that 'an admixture lishment of Messrs Pulam and Davis, brokers in the of a lie hath ever something pleasant in it,' is well bones and sinews of their fellow-men. "Go,' said I illustrated in some points of natural history, where to the clerk, 'to General Bleucher, who has advertised a fiction, which a single observation would shew to that young girl for sale; go and buy her: make the be false, has held its ground for centuries. It is best bargain for me you can.'
difficult to account in any other way for the obstinate What! you going into it so soon ?' said he. vitality of many simple and almost obvious lies. One
The man had seen me before. I had visited the pen of these cases is that of the cuckoo. This bird has they kept, under pretence of examining their stock. been a favourite subject for poets and naturalists to
Yes,' said I; I've made up my mind to buy that exercise their imagination about; though the latter girl, so please attend to the matter at once. I will call have far exceeded the former in the boldness and again in the morning.'
originality of their fictions. It is lucky for some of On returning the next day, I found myself the owner these daring romancers that the cuckoo cannot bring of 'Rachel, aged nineteen, and warranted sound in an action for libel against them, or the case of every particular,' as I took up the bill of sale. When Cuculus canorus versus Pliny, Ælian, and others, might I returned to the hotel, after getting through this terminate unfavourably for the defendants. stroke of business, I found a letter awaiting me, post- Setting aside the reckless inventions of authors, there marked 'Niagara Falls.' I tore it open, and read as is much that is curious and interesting about the habits follows: "We are safe on the other side. You know of the bird. It is a well-known fact that the cuckoo who.'
never builds a nest of its own, always committing its • Hurrah! hurrah!' shouted I, capering around the young to the care of other birds; accounts of this room— hurrah! hurrah! they are safe!'
strange habit are to be found in every popular book * What the deuce is the matter with you?' said the of natural history, and every school-boy has his own astonished Stokes. “Are you going crazy? Who is it particular legends concerning it. It is singular, how. that's safe?'
ever, that though the young cuckoo itself has furnished • Why, Kate and William. Who else do you sup- the subject for so many tales and pictures, the egg, pose ?' said I. 'Hurrah!'
in English books at least, has hardly been noticed. In Stokes started up with a look of alarm, and ex- Germany, the case is different; there the bird is much claimed: 'Hush, man; for Heaven's sake, hush. Do commoner than with us; and the observations of you want to be ruined for ever? What have you been some German naturalists have established one of the about? It can't be possible that you've had anything most remarkable facts in the science of ornithology. to do with their escape. You certainly haven't been We find their observations recorded in a German such a fool as to mix yourself up in any such busi- quarterly publication, entirely devoted to ornithology, ness ?' And Stokes rose and looked out into the named after the distinguished ornithologist, Naumann, entry to see if we were overheard by any one; then, and edited by one well known in the science, Mr É. returning to his seat, asked: "Tell me truly, have you
Baldamus. had anything to do with it?'
It has always been remarked that the egg of the “Yes, I have,' said I boldly.
cuckoo is exceedingly variable in colour ; sometimes a Then you are a greater fool than I took you for,' light greenish blue, and sometimes spotted with different replied Stokes. “Don't you know,' he continued, shades of gray and brown, like that of many song. that you have exposed yourself to the possibility of birds. This strange variableness is curiously illustrated being incarcerated in the state's prison for life? How by Mr Baldamus. 'Before me lies, in a box with did you do it?'
many compartments, a small collection of birds' eggs; I then related to him the whole affair, concluding at first sight, it might be taken for a collection of the with the boast that I did not fear the whole of Rich- eggs of various warblers. I ask a lad, who is pretty mond, although at that very moment I was shaking well acquainted with the common eggs of the neighall over in contemplation of the risk I had run. When bourhood: "What is this egg ?”_“A garden warbler's." I had finished, Stokes, putting on a long face, replied: “ And this ?”_"A wheatear's ;" and so on. But the
Do you know, sir, I've a great mind to give you fact is, all these eggs are cuckoos', which are found, up to justice. I'm out of all patience with you, you as most ornithologists know, resembling those of abandoned malefactor. Here I brought you into the almost all the common warblers—the water-wagtail, hospitable state of Virginia, confiding in your honesty, blackcap, skylark, meadow pipit, &c.' and you signalise your advent by conspiring with and He afterwards gives a list of twenty-eight birds, assisting runaway niggers ; spiriting them off with as whose eggs the cuckoo's have been found to resemble; much facility as if you had been born on the under- among which are those we have mentioned, as well as ground railway, and been a conductor of the line ever the redstart, the reed warbler, the red-backed shrike, since you left your cradle. Go, sir; pack your trunk, the redbreast, &c. Now, the singular thing is that, and make tracks for some dirty abolition city ; take with few exceptions, these have been found in the nests the girl you have bought with you, and shew me of the birds whose eggs they resemble; or, in other your face no more.' And, as he concluded, he crushed words, the egg of the cuckoo agrees in colour with those my hat down over my eyes, and left the room, shout- among which it is laid. This remarkable fact is estabing with laughter as he went: 'Queer fellow that, lished by numerous observations, which Mr Baldamus Stokes!'
has reduced to a tabular form. From this table it A week after this occurrence, a gentleman of re
* Naumannia ; Archiv für die Ornithologie. Stuttgardt: markably prepossessing appearance might have been Hoffman. London: Williams and Norgate. seen seated in the cars which were to take him from + Naumannia, 1863; p. 307 (3d quarter). Niagara to New York, where, it is said, he took the varieties; no one could believe, at first sight, that they were all
He also gives a plate representing a great number of these steamer for Europe. On the platform beside the train, I cuckoos eggs.
appears that out of seventy-six cuckoos’ eggs, sixty- cuckoo of Africa-many which he shot in this way four agreed in colour and markings with those they either half-swallowed the egg, or cast it out of their were associated with; the remainder mostly resembling mouth in the death-spasm. This is no doubt the those of the white wagtail and the reed-warbler. origin of the stories of the old writers that the cuckoo
It also appears that the reed-warbler is favoured laid its egg from its mouth. It must require a pretty with the largest number of cuckoos' eggs-nine out | wide gape to take in the egg, and with most birds it of the seventy-six, of which eight exactly resembled would be impossible ; but the extreme smallness of its own eggs. The white wagtail comes next, taking the cuckoo's egg in proportion to the size of the bird seven eggs coloured like its own, and one like the permits it. Such an arrangement as this must also be reed-warbler's. The hedge-sparrow, which is supposed very necessary when so small a nest as the goldento be so frequently the young cuckoo's foster-parent, crested wren's is chosen-for this tiny creature somehas only one. This is, at all events, enough to shew that times has a monster of a young cuckoo foisted upon the rule holds good in most cases, and the excep- her—the weight of the cuckoo laying an egg in the tions will presently be seen to be easily explicable. ordinary way, would quite break down the little nest. The end attained by this is, obviously, that the bird Mr Baldamus speaks of having found cuckoos' eggs which has the care of the young cuckoo treacherously in the nests of the red-backed shrike, which imitated committed to her, may not recognise the stranger's the two varieties of the egg of that bird, in having egg among her own. Another question is, how it is either a greenish or reddish-gray ground colour. This, accomplished-whether the same cuckoo always lays of course, gives a certain amount of difficulty in diseggs of one colour, or of colours varying according to tinguishing the cuckoo's egg ; but it can generally be the nest they are laid in?
recognised, in the first place, by its size, which varies It has been supposed by some, that the sight of the very little ; it is very small in proportion to the size eggs lying in the nest, so works on the imagination of of the bird, being generally smaller, and never larger, the female cuckoo, that the egg she is about to lay than that of the skylark. There is generally, too, a takes their colour, as Jacob made Laban's ewes bring perceptible difference of colour from the eggs it is assoforth spotted lambs by putting half-peeled rods before ciated with, and the spots are seldom if ever arranged them. This is not without analogies in physiology; but in a ring round the larger end, as in so many eggs. the facts are against it. For instance, cuckoos' eggs The shell is very thin, and has a peculiar grain, which are sometimes laid in empty nests; and two cuckoos' is difficult to describe, but may be seen by comparing eggs, of different colours, have been found in the same the cuckoo's egg with some other under a lens. nest: also, observations seem to shew that the same The facts we have mentioned are all taken from bird always does lay eggs of the same colour. First, German sources. There are special facilities in GerThe colour of cuckoos' eggs seems, in some measure- many for inquiry, in consequence of the bird being Temminck says, entirely-to depend on the locality ; much commoner than with us; but we have already and it is well known that the cuckoo always haunts a seen some definite confirmations in English specimens, certain small district year after year. Three cuckoos' and there is no doubt that further investigations eggs have been found in the same district in different would elicit still more remarkable results. Here is a birds' nests, but undistinguishable from each other. field where even our younger readers may do good Each bird must, of course, if this is the case, be provided service to science ; let each bird-nesting school-boy with the instinct to lay its eggs in the nests of a par- who reads this, see in the ensuing spring whether the ticular species; and it will only occasionally, when it cuckoos of his own neighbourhood have the same cannot find a nest of this species at hand, have recourse habits. Nothing is required but intelligent observato the nests of other birds. This also explains why the tion. It is important to discover whether the same exceptions almost always resemble the eggs of those bird really returns every year to the same district or species which are the principal favourites with the beat; and whether cuckoos' eggs of one colour are cuckoo, such as the white wagtail and reed-warbler, especially characteristic of each district. as mentioned above.
Secondly, Various observations shew that the colour of the egg is fixed before the cuckoo sees the eggs
FESTIVITIES IN BALLYGARRIFFE. it intends to deposit it among. For instance, a In Ballygarriffe we don't manage things exactly like female cuckoo was caught alive on a haystack, in other people; we rather pride ourselves on some of the neighbourhood of which was a redstart's nest it the peculiarities which serve to distinguish ours from probably intended to visit, and, when in confinement, the plebeian villages in our neighbourhood. We are laid a greenish-blue egg like a wheatear's, and thus, of course, very much resembling the blue eggs of the remarkably aristocratic-rather painfully so towards redstart. Again, a cuckoo was observed slowly and any luckless wights who come amongst us without quietly flying into a small bush near a wood: though proper credentials of gentility. They had far better go frightened away, it returned again; and when at to Austria without a passport, or to London without last it left the bush entirely, a pratincole's nest was money! Any hardy resident who ventures to call found on the ground, with the bird sitting on it, and, upon them, invite them, or recognise their existence in close by on the ground, an egg resembling the prat- any shape or form, runs a very great risk of being incole's, but larger–exactly like what the observer tabooed in his or her own proper person ; our code of declares he has occasionally found in pratincoles' nests gentility resembling in this respect the laws of quaranbefore, and believes to be cuckoos' eggs.
The cuckoo had obviously been looking for a nest tine—that contact with the suspected brings even the for its egg, but was prevented from depositing it here healthy under pratique. by the obstinate sitting of the pratincole. Why, then, Even amongst ourselves, we have little cliques and was the egg on the ground ? It is a curious fact that coteries, which maintain a sort of skirmishing and the cuckoo always lays its egg on the ground in the border warfare with each other; and some of us who first instance, and conveys it to the nest in its mouth, form a portion of the cream of the cream,' are willing In many cases, this is necessary; for instance, it would be impossible for the cuckoo to lay its egg in the occasionally to take an unlawful and venturous dip ordinary manner in the nest of a redstart or a water into the skimmed milk of society. wagtail in the hole of some tree or wall. Female
Men, unmarried men especially, are very scarce cuckoos have been shot with the egg in their mouth. amongst us; and, of course, like everything else, they Levaillant observed the same habit in the yellow are esteemed precious in proportion to their rarity.
At one time, there were forty marriageable ladies resid- other, one of our very few availables, as Miss ing in and about Ballygarriffe-'the forty thieves,' as a Saunders's maid remarked : Poor gentleman, has to sarcastic old bachelor called them; while the number diwide himself.' of gentlemen at all likely to assume the gilded chain We seldom have a moon on those tea-party erenof matrimony, was actually limited to three.
ings; and as to gas, such a thing is not to be named 'Forty deplorables, and but three availables !' ex- amongst us. The upstart town, indeed, on the other claimed a visitor one day ; ' what a dreadful dispropor- side of the river, lately set up a gasometer, and offered, tion!' Matters have somewhat mended since then-half scornfully, to lay subaqueous pipes across, and not matrimonially speaking, however; for although we give us the benefit of its illumination. But, as we have a few more bachelors amongst us, yet, like fish all agreed, 'gas would spoil Ballygarriffe: the dirty, that have been often angled for, and foxes that have narrow streets of Merton, filled with drunken sailors frequently run before the hounds, they have become so and squalling brats, might indeed require to be lighted wary, so difficult to catch, that our village is known at night; but our pretty terraces, our clean, quiet almost proverbially as the worst place in Ireland in roads, our village street, which has houses at one side which a young lady may practise the exciting and only, and trees at the other, quite like a boulevardprofitable sport of husband-hunting. On account of they surely require no other illumination than that of this paucity of gallant knights and squires, we ladies the twinkling stars and silvery moon. This latter are wonderfully independent of their company and clause was the contribution of a sentimental maiden, escort; indeed, Ballygarriffe, albeit situated in our | Miss Angelina Stamers, who resides in a romantic troublous kingdom of Ireland,' as good Queen Bess cottage with her widowed sister, Mrs Bennett. The used to call it, is about the quietest and most peace- moon and stars are certainly all very well, when they able spot in the dominions of Queen Victoria. Miss happen to be so courteous as to shew themselves ; but Saunders remarked to me one day: ‘My dear, one may when we have to go home in the dark, funny little walk about here at any hour of the day or night scenes do occur. without even an umbrella. The non-essential charac Our lanterns, like most articles under the surveilter of which implement, however, referred exclusively lance of Irish servants, generally contrive to be hors to its secondary use as a warlike weapon ; for our de combat when they are wanted. often-weeping skies render its legitimate office any Why won't the lantern continue lighting to-night, thing but superfluous.
Leary?' inquired Miss Allen of her servant, as the We have pleasant little tea-parties now and then at fickering flame expired in the very darkest part of each other's houses, where the usual programme of the the strand-road. evening is as follows: First, excellent strong well • Why, thin, myself doesn't know, miss, unless 'tis creamed tea and coffee; and such a Sally Lunn, rich, on account of the wick.' light, gold-coloured, as I never saw equalled at any • What's the matter with it?' trans-Ballygarriffite party. This commendable meal " 'Tis the way, miss, Norry couldn't find the wicks is partaken of by the guests, comfortably seated round anywhere from the top to the bottom of the house; a table; Mrs Bennett, indeed, once resolved to be and so she unravelled one of the masther's worstead genteel, and to have the tea, coffee, and cold sweet- socks, and put in a bit of the yarn, thinking 'twould cake-a miserable substitute for the glowing Sally do beautiful; but I'm afeard it won't light.' Lunn-handed round properly on trays; but one If the moon, according to the ancient legend, be handmaiden managed to upset a cup of coffee over a the receptacle of everything lost on the earth, she pink silk-dress; and the other sent cake, cream-ewer, certainly must contain a good many of our lanterns. and sugar-bowl flying into the centre of an ottoman, Mine, at all events, like Miss Allen's wicks, was not covered with satin patchwork, the "box-pattern,' and to be found 'from the top to the bottom of the house, the very pride and delight of its owner's heart. when I wanted it one dark evening that I and a young
So the trays were voted a bore, and the hand friend who was staying with me were going to drink maidens a nuisance ; and every one was glad to return tea at Mrs Allen's. to the bright mahogany-table and the pleasant hissing • What shall we do without the lantern, Mick?'
I inquired of my butler. After tea, follow de rigueur Annie Laurie, To the Oh, don't be afeard, ma'am; I'll light ye there in West, and Excelsior, sung and performed by one or style, never fear!' more of the company. We all say that we're So, trusting to this oracular promise, we proceeded extremely fond of music; that, in fact, it is quite to array ourselves for our expedition. It happened a passion with us; but I sometimes cannot help that my young friend had brought nothing with her suspecting that in reality we are all very glad to get in the way of a head-covering but a particularly to the third act of the evening-namely, a round stylish, and, therefore, an especially small bonnet;
usually either ‘Club the Constable,' so, for reasons partly of economy and partly of complayed for love, and therefore very honestly; or fort, and trusting to the darkness of the night, she, extremely limited loo, of which so much cannot be in the absence of the master of the house, coolly put said. Indeed, the cheating is so barefaced, so avowed, on his wide-awake hat. I offered her, in addition, the 80 much a matter of course, and so general, that it loan of another portion of his garments, which, howbecomes quite honest; and the laughter, fun, and ever, she declined, on the plea of their utter incapacity jesting, the comical disputes about the ownership of to contain the vast circumference of a steel petticoat. a disputed threepenny, and the transparent flirta- Well, we were ready at last, and standing in the hall. tions conducted beneath the equivoque of winning or • Mick!' losing queens, hearts and knaves, render our Bally Coming, ma'am, immediately. And up walked garriffe card-playing the merriest and most innocent our satellite, looking as brilliant as a primary planet, gambling in the world. But the seeing each other from the ingenious contrivance which he carried in his home' after these festivities is the most amusing part hand. It consisted of an end of thick mould-candle, of the business. Sometimes there are five several sets lighted in a cracked tumbler, which, after all, served of ladies going in different directions, while the whole admirably to light us on our way, and shewed off to available protecting contingent consists of two house- such advantage the laughing blue eyes and rich nutmaids, one dog, one lantern, and two gentlemen. brown hair beneath the saucy wide-awake, that I really
One of these latter, being an old married man, think if we had met any beaus that evening, they tucks his wife under his arm, and walks off in total could scarcely have retained secure possession of their disregard of the girls he leaves behind him.' The hearts.