"Albert rushed on, and& with one stroke of his Alpenstock
sturnne the wolf nearest to him". p. 167
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD
WHAT BOYS HAVE DONE
AUTHOR OF "THE HOLIDAY KEEPSAKE," CHIflNEY-CORNER STORIES," ETC. ETC.
AND OTHER POPULAR AUTHORS.
Wi~l @iBf fIll-|lii] illusntlrations.
GALL & INGLIS.
25 PATEROSTER SQUARE. 20 BE inbAD T RAO
z3 PATERNOSTER SQUARE. 20 BERNARD TERRACE.
THE following pages are intended to depict the
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD, and especially to exhibit the
heroism of moral worth. In former times, a man,
to be a hero, was expected to slay his thousands,
to found empires, and to subjugate nations. But
now, better taught by the experience of the past,
we understand that true heroism may consist in
performing our duty in that state of life unto
which it may please God to call us. There is a
heroism in refraining from evil, in speaking the
truth, in the exercise of humanity, in devoting
ourselves to some difficult task for the sake of
others, and in the vindication of principle. The
great and good of all countries and in all ages
afford instances of this in their early days; and in
selecting a few of these from authentic sources.
I feel confident in performing a service to the
Boys of England, and even to England herself; as
the greatness of a nation does not consist so much
in armies, in fleets, in extended conquests, or
unbounded wealth, as in the exercise of the high
virtue of our nature, in deeds of love, gentle-
ness, honour, honesty, and truth.
STOBY OF DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE 1
THE STORY OF CYR S 7
THE Boy-KiG--EDWARD THE SI 13
THE BOYHOOD OF OLIER CROMWELL 21
DAVID LIVINGSTONE 26
JoHN KITT 34
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST-SEBASTIAN GOE 46
BOISH HEROISM OF SIR WIIAM JONE 57
THE LITTLE TRUANT-JACQUES AMYOT 62
AMIABLE HEROISM OF Louis XVIL 85
HEROIC DEvOTION oF A TYOLESE BOY 91
THE TRTTFUL SCOTCH BoY; OR, SAWNEY MACPHEISON. 95
THE LITTLE HUNCHBACK-ALEXANDER POPE 99
SCHOOL FRIENDSHIP .. 113
THE LITTLE DRUMMER-BOY 116
MOZART, THE YOUNG MUSICIAN 119
REUBEN PEBRY .131
TURENNE, THE LITTLE SOLDIER 133
THE COURAGEOUS BOY ..149
BOHooD F TH GREAT COLBERT .151
THE HEROIN OF TRUTH-GEORGE WASHINGTON 157
ALBERT, THE SON OF WIIAMi TELL 164
BENJmm FRANKLIN, THE YOUNG PINE 174
JOSEPH HME, THE FISHERMAN'S SON .194
HEROIC DEVOTION OF Two MEXICAN YoUTmH .199
THE BOYHooD OF LaNaus 201
THHE 1BOISM OF TBUST-SIR HUMPHRY DAVY .219
WnCKELMANN, THE LEARNED COBBLER 229
LORD NEI ON 257
GEORGE STEPIENSON-TEE HEROISM OF PERSEVERANCE 266
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
THE BoY KING AND ST. GEORGE 14
THE LITTE TRUANT PRESENTED TO Fn cis 81
ALEXANDER POPE AND HIS AUNT .104
COLBERT AND THE ROBBER 153
WASHINGTON AND THE CHERRY-TREE 161
FRANKLIN PRACTISING ELOCUTION. 175
LINNEUS AND HIms PAMl L AT THEIR EVENING WOB 202
WINCKELMANN READING TO HIS FATHER 231
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.L
Story of David, the Son of Jesse.
DAVID, the son of Jesse, was a shepherd boy, and
kept sheep in the wilderness. No doubt the life
of a shepherd is favourable to thought and to con-
templation; and David, while watching his flocks
by night, often cast his eyes upward to the glory
of the stars, and thought of the great God who
made them and the universe, and all that is
therein. No doubt but this gentle shepherd boy
often poured out his soul in prayer and praise to
his Creator, and thought upon the way in which
he might best serve him and glorify his name.
The Almighty was not unmindful of the poor
shepherd boy, who was anxious only to please God,
while a great and powerful King disobeyed his
will and transgressed his laws. God, therefore, de-
termined to choose him to govern his people, the
Jews, and he sent his Prophet Samuel to Jesse,
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
saying, Fill thine horn with oil, and go, for I
have provided me a King among his sons." And
Samuel went, and he came to the house of Jesse,
and commanded all his sons to pass before him.
Jesse had seven sons at home, and when they
were come before the Prophet, he looked on each
of them, but the Spirit of the Lord did not satisfy
Samuel that any of the sons present were the
chosen of the Lord. And the Lord said unto
Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the
height of his stature, for the Lord seeth not as
man seeth, for man looketh on the outward ap-
pearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart."
None of these were, therefore, chosen of the Lord.
And Samuel said unto Jesse-" Are here all thy
children ?" and he said-" There remaineth yet the
youngest, and behold he keepeth the sheep." And
Samuel ordered him to be brought in. Now, he
was ruddy, and of a beautiful countenance, and
goodly to look to. And the Lord said, Arise, and
anoint him, for this is he." And Samuel took the
horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his
David being thus chosen of the Lord, and having
his Spirit upon him, came down to the place where
the armies of Israel and the Philistines were en-
camped. The army of the Philistines was on a
mountain on one side, and that of the Israelites
DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE.
on a mountain on the other side, and there was a
valley between them.
Now, the Philistines had a mighty giant, named
Goliath, who was nearly eleven feet high. He
was armed at every point; had a coat of mail on
his body, greaves of brass upon his legs, a target
of brass between his shoulders, a brazen helmet,
and a strong and mighty spear.
And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel
-" Choose ye a man to match with me, and let
us decide the battle;" and he vaunted and defied
the army of the Israelites, and sorely discomfited
them. And he presented himself before the army
for forty days.
At this time David was in the wilderness keep-
ing his father's sheep, as at other times. But being
ordered by his father to take provisions to his
brothers, who were soldiers in the army of Israel,
he came down to the battle-field just as the armies
were about to fight, and shouting for the battle.
And David came to his brethren, and saluted
them. While he was talking with them the
Philistine champion Goliath came forth and defied
the armies of Israel, as he had done aforetime.
And when he heard him, David expressed to those
about him his willingness to undertake the combat
with this mighty giant; but his brothers upbraided
him, and accused him of pride and vanity. There
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
were, however, many in the army that admired his
boldness, and who believed that the Spirit of God
was upon David; and they brought him to Saul
When David came before Saul, he expressed
his willingness to fight the giant. But Saul said-
" Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to
fight with him, for thou art but a youth, and he is
a man of war from his youth."
But David said to Saul-" Thy servant kept his
father's sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear,
and took a lamb out of the flock; and I went out
after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of
his mouth; and when he arose against me, I caught
him by the beard, and smote him, and slew him.
Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear, and
this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of
them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living
God. The Lord that delivered me out of the paw
of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear,
shall deliver me out of the hand of this Philis-
tine." And Saul said unto David, Go, and the
Lord be with thee."
And Saul armed David with his armour, and put
a helmet of brass upon his head, and he armed him
with a coat of mail; but David put them off him,
and he took his staff in his hand, and chose him
five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them
DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE.
in his scrip or- shepherd's bag. Then he took
his sling in his hand, and he drew near to the
And when the Philistine looked about and saw
David, he disdained him, and he said, Am I a
dog that thou comest to me with a stone ? Come to
me, and I will give thy flesh to the fowls of the
air, and the wild beasts of the earth." David re-
plied, "Thou comest to me with a sword, and
with a spear, and with a shield, but I come to
thee in the name of the Lord of hosts."
And it came to pass that when Goliath came to-
wards David, thinking soon to destroy his insig-
nificant adversary, that the son of Jesse hastened
forward to meet him. David then put his hand
into his bag and took from it a stone, which he
put into .his sling. And he slung the stone for-
ward with all his strength, and smote the Philis
tine in the forehead, so that he fell with his face
to the earth. So David prevailed over the enemy
of his people with a sling and a stone. And he
ran toward the Philistine and put his foot upon
his neck. But as he had no sword of his own, he
drew the giant's weapon from its scabbard, and
slew him and cut off his head. And when the
Philistines saw their champion was dead, they
fled in dismay.
But the Israelites pursued them, and obtained
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
a great victory over them. Then David took the
head of Goliath, and brought it to- Saul at Jeru-
salem. And the King was greatly surprised that
this stripling had been able to overcome the giant
Goliath, and asked whence he came and who he
was. And then when Saul learned that he was
the son of Jesse, the Bethlehemite, he took him
into his favour, and bade him stay in the royal
palace, and go no more home to the house of his
My young friends will find the further history
of David in that best of all books, the Bible, and
will learn how he became King of Israel, and
what he did, and what he wrote, and how he
sometimes fell into grievous sin; for the best of
us are very imperfect and full of evil. From the
history of David they will learn much, but they
can never forget the shepherd boy who was en-
abled to display the true heroism of his nature by
putting his trust in God.
The Story of Cyrus.
THE BIG COAT AND THE LITTLE COAT.
THE Great Cyrus was once a little boy, like all
of you. But before I tell you about Cyrus as a
little boy, I must say something concerning him
as a great man.
Cyrus the Great was a King of Persia, and was
born about six hundred years before the Christian
era. His father was of what is called an ignoble
family, but his mother, Mandan6, was of the Royal
blood, being daughter of Astyag6s, King of the
Medes, who were then the most powerful nation
of the East. It was a custom in those days that
when a child was born who was not wanted, either
to kill it outright, or to expose it in some inhos-
pitable place, that it might die of hunger, or be
devoured by wild beasts. Soon after his birth,
Cyrus was thus exposed in a desert, but being
found by a shepherdess, who had compassion on
him, was reared by her, and educated as her own
When Cyrus grew up into boyhood, he seemed
to show by his conduct that he had royal blood in
his veins, for he became the chief or leader of all
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
his schoolfellows, who made him their leader or
boy-king. When Cyrus grew older, he raised a
body of troops, and made war upon his grand-
father, the King of Persia, and dethroned him. He
then subdued the eastern parts of Asia, and made
war against Croesus, King of Lydia, whom he also
conquered. He afterwards invaded the kingdom
of Assyria, and took the city of Babylon by divert-
ing the channels of the Euphrates, and marching
his troops through the dry bed of the river. He
likewise redeemed Persia from the yoke of the
Medes, and himself became king, about the year
560 before Christ. He subsequently commenced
an expedition against the Scythians, and was de-
feated in a bloody battle, losing both his crown
.and his life. This event occurred 529 years
before the birth of Christ. Such is a short begin-
ning, middle, and end of Cyrus the Great, one of
the most notable conquerors of ancient times.
Cyrus would have been a truly great king but
for his love of war and bloodshed, for he had many
noble qualities of heart, and a superior under-
standing. On one occasion when at school, in his
capacity of boy-king, he had led his schoolfellows
forth on a pomegranate expedition, in which the
plantations of a poor man were invaded, and his
pomegranates stolen. The depredators had got
clear off with their booty, and had returned to -
CYRUS THE GREAT.
their school without detection; but in the morning
the owner of the fruit appeared before the Ma-
gister or master of the school, complaining of his
loss, and begging of him to make inquiries among
the boys, as he strongly suspected some of them.
The boys were then brought up and interrogated,
but they all strongly denied having had any share
in the transaction, making the most ridiculous
excuses. At last Cyrus was called up, and upon
being interrogated, at once said-" I did it. Let
me be punished-I was the instigator and leader.
I can break into an orchard, I can steal a pome-
granate," said he, but I cannot tell a lie. It is
my deed, and I am ready to receive the punish-
ment that is my due for being a thief. As to my
companions in this affair, these I shall not name
I am answerable for them."
This noble conduct drew forth the admiration
of the Magister, who exclaimed-" Such noble
conduct is indeed worthy of a King, and your
fellows have done well in choosing you to rule over
them. That you have done wrong you yourself
admit. I shall in your case spare the lash, be-
cause you fear nothing so much as telling a lie.
Go, consult your companions, and make this poor
man compensation for his loss, and then come to
my heart, and be to me as a son."
The same master, seeing the noble qualities of
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
this boy-king, took great pains with him, and used
to instruct him by imaginary cases: one of these
was as follows:-
There were two boys, one of whom was a great,
and the other a little boy. Now it happened that
the little boy had a coat that was very much too
big for him, and the great boy had a coat that was
very much too small for him. Upon seeing his
own condition, and that of his fellow, the great boy
proposed to the little boy an exchange. Your
coat," said he, is too large for you, and mine is
too small for me; therefore, if we change we shall
both be exactly fitted." The little boy would not
consent to the proposal, and so then the great boy
called him a fool, and took away his coat by force,
and gave him his own little coat in exchange. The
great coat now fitted the great boy, and the little
coat the little boy. The little boy was, however,
very dissatisfied. And now I want you," said
the Magister to Cyrus, to tell me what ought to
be done in such an affair. Ought the little boy
to be satisfied with the coat that exactly fits him
or not ?"
No, sir," replied Cyrus.
And why not?" said the master.
Because," said Cyrus, it was not just for the
great boy to take away the little boy's coat without
CYRUS THE GREAT.
You have rightly decided in this matter," re-
plied the master. Thus Kings and Czars may be
still taught by the boy Cyrus.
There is also an anecdote told of Cyrus which
displays the hero even in childhood. Being en-
gaged with his youthful companions in some
merry game or romp, one of the younger of them
fell into a deep ravine, at the bottom of which ran
a rapid stream. All the lads were horror-stricken
at the accident, but none dared to descend the
steep rugged sides of the ravine in order to save
the little fellow. At length Cyrus, who was at
some distance when his young friend met with
his disaster, was made acquainted with the fact.
He hesitated for an instant to consider the best
means of reaching the lad, who was then up to
his waist in water and was in great danger of
being borne away by the rapidity of the current.
He soon made up his mind how to act; and in
another instant he was clambering down the ra-
vine, holding on by the tufts of grass and jagged
stones that jutted out from its sides. And when
at length he reached his companion, he comforted
and sustained him till means were obtained to
rescue them both from their forlorn situation.
This was true heroism, and worthy of his princely
nature. Regardless of his own great danger, he
hastened to the assistance of his friend; and we
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
may be sure that he was well repaid by the satis-
faction of knowing that he had been instrumental
in doing good, to say nothing of the applause he
was sure to win from his companions. All his
life was a series of heroisms. Isaiah the prophet
mentions him by name, calling him the servant
of God, and telling the Jews that this prince
would be employed by the Great Master to rescue
them from the hands of the Chaldeans,
The Boy King.
EDWARD THE SIXTH.
HOOKER says of this Prince, that though he died
young, he lived long, for life is action." His was
quite the heroism of study, for at the age of fifteen
he had learned seven different languages. In that
of his own country and that of France ne was
perfect, as well as in the Latin-so much so, that
when only seven years of age he wrote two letters
in this language to his godfather, the celebrated
Archbishop Oranmer. Cardan says of him as
follows:-" In the conversations that I had with
him he spoke Latin with as much readiness and
elegance as myself." He was a pretty good logi-
cian; he understood natural philosophy and music,
and played upon the lute. The good and the
learned had formed the highest expectations of
him from the sweetness of his disposition, and the
excellence of his talents.
In the British Museum there is a book of Ex-
ercises made by the Prince, in English, Latin, and
Greek, with the name of King Edward subscribed
to each of them in the language in which it was
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
written; and Bishop Burnet has preserved in the
history of the Reformation a diary of his life,
which this Prince kept, and a discourse about Re-
formation abuses, which would have done no dis-
credit to an old statesman.
Knox tells of the noble youth's piety and vir-
tue; Cardan, of his remarkable learning and wit,
and Hayward records how handsome was his
person, how kingly his bearing; and hardly any
will deny that he was a wonderful boy.
In the year 1551 a grand festival of St. George
was held in the palace at Greenwich, after a re-
ligious service, attended by the young King, the
Duke of Somerset, the Earl of Warwick, and all
the nobility, Knights of the Order. Edward en-
tered into his presence-chamber. My Lords,"
said he, "I pray ye what Saint is this George that
we so honour him ?" Now these good gentlemen
were not a little puzzled at this question. True,
it had often been their battle-cry upon many a
glorious field, but it had never occurred to them
to inquire into his history, and it is told that the
Marquis of Winchester replied-" To be plain,
Sire, I never did read in history of St. George, but
only in Legenda Aurea,' where it is set down that
St. George out with his sword and ran the dragon
through with his spear." And, I pray you, my
Lord, what did he do with his sword the while ?"
"Edward entered into the presence chamber. 'My lords,' said
he, 'I pray ye what saint is this George, that we so honour
him ?' "-Page 14.
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH.
asked Edward, laughing so heartily that for some
moments he could not speak.
It is related of him that just before his last ill-
ness he performed an act of unparalleled heroism.
It was when he was in his thirteenth year that his
sister Elizabeth, then very young, was at play
near the river Thames, which abutted on the Royal
Palace, and with much of the daring which was
so fully displayed by that princess in after life,
she leaped on a pony just brought up for Prince
Edward, and attempted to ride him up and down
the broad causeway before the palace. The pony
being very fresh, and somewhat restive, plunged
and capered, and at last jumped over the low wall
which separated the river from the palace, and
plunged into the river. The Prince at this mo-
ment had entered the palace terrace, and hearing
the outcry, and observing his sister clinging to
the mane of the pony, which was struggling in
the river, immediately sprang on to the back of
the horse of the groom in attendance, and plunged
after her over the terrace. The stream was run-
ning fast, and his own horse was very unmanage-
able; but he soon reached the spot where Elizabeth
was struggling. Seizing the bridle of her pony,
he endeavoured to guide it towards the land, but
the unruly brute struggled and plunged so that
this was impracticable. The two horses floun
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
dered together for some time; at last Elizabeth,
exhausted, dropped from her steed, and sank in
the rapid stream. In a few moments she rose
again, but at a considerable distance down ine
river. To this place the young Prince swam his
horse, but the Princess again sank. Leaping from
the saddle, Edward dived after his sister, and had
the satisfaction to lay hold of her in her descent.
He rose to the surface, swam to his horse with one
hand, clasping his sister with the other, and seizing
the reins, the animal quickly drew them to the
shore, where they landed in safety.
Many other stories are related of Edward which
would go to prove what noble things boys can do.
One of these anecdotes I cannot refrain from re-
lating. Being in the library of the palace one
day amusing himself with his young companions,
he required a book which was a little out of reach,
when one of them carelessly placed a large Bible
on a chair to stand upon, that he might the more
easily reach the volume in request. Noticing the
want of reverence for the best of books, the young
Prince immediately expostulated with the thought-
less youth, and took the book away with an air of
the profoundest veneration; observing that the
future glories of England lay around that book,
as being the birthright of every free man.
Oranmer, who was standing within hearing, could
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH.
not restrain his admiration, and advancing, clasped
him in his arms with the most cordial affection.
It is said that this noble act of respect for the
Scriptures was never forgotten by the Archbishop.
Edward succeeded to the throne of his father,
the Eighth Harry, when only nine years of age.
His mother, Queen Jane Seymour, maid of honour
to Anne Boleyn, died on the twelfth day after his
birth, at Hampton Court Palace; and the amiable
young Prince during his short life had three
several stepmothers-Ann of Cleves, Catherine
Howard, and Catherine Parr; though it does not
appear that either of them paid him any great
attention, or bestowed upon him any very warm
marks of affection. He was brought up, says Sir
John Hayward, who wrote a very full and inter-
esting history of his life and reign, among
nurses, until he arrived at the age of six years.
He was then committed to the care of Dr., after-
wards Sir Anthony, Cooke, and Mr., after Sir
John, Cheke; the former of whom appears to have
undertaken the Prince's instruction in philosophy
and divinity; the latter, in Greek and Latin.
Doubtless he was surrounded with luxuries, and
princely means of enjoyment. It is told of him
that when only five years old, Archbishop Cran-
mer, his godfather, made him a handsome present,
consisting of a noble service of silver plate. The
18 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Prince was delighted with the beautiful spoons,
dishes, and plates, and his valet, to enhance his
pleasure, reminded him that the gift was all his
own, and that he only should use it, lest others
might injure it. My good Hinchbrook," said the
Prince, if no one but I be permitted to touch
these valuables without spoiling them, how do
you suppose they would ever have been given to
me ?" Next day Edward invited a party of friends
to visit him; and the feast was served upon the
plate, and at their departure Edward gave to each
one of his young guests an article of the service,
as a mark of his royal regard. In all his short
life Edward displayed a sincere and earnest love
for truth, religion and charity; so much so, in-
deed, that even in his lifetime he was widely
known and loved as Edward the Saint.
In the spring of 1552 the boy King's health
began to fail, and about the same time he was
attacked by the measles and small-pox, from the
effects of which his constitution never rallied.
While still suffering from these diseases he con-
ceived the idea of founding and endowing an
asylum for fatherless children. Christ's Hospital
was opened in November, 1552, and the blue dress
worn by the boys caused it to be known as The
Blue Coat School." At or about the same time
the youthful King founded St. Thomas's and
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH.
Bridewell Hospitals-Christ's Hospital for the
education of poor children; St. Thomas's for the
relief of the sick and diseased, and Bridewell for
the correction and amendment of the idle and
dissolute. These three great charities are still
in active and beneficial existence. In the reign of
this Prince there were also founded, either by him,
or by great and good men who followed his royal
example, the King's School at Sherborne, still one
of our leading public schools; the Birmingham
Free Grammar School, which Edward endowed
with moneys arising from the suppressed monas-
teries and religious houses, and which endowment
is now worth 8,000 a year; the Free Grammar
School at Lichfield; the Tunbridge School in Kent,
which was founded by Sir Andrew Judd, who
obtained for it a charter from Edward in the very
last year of his reign; the Grammar School at
Bedford, and several other notable educational
Edward the Sixth was familiar not only with
the learning and accomplishments of his time, but
also with many subjects which hardly came
within the education and capacity of so young
a Prince; for instance, the mercantile, financial,
and military systems of -his own country, and
those of continental nations. Had he lived, he
would have been, probably, the best of England's
20 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Kings. "He gave hopes," says Lord Oxford,
"of proving a good king, as in so green an age he
seemed resolved to be acquainted with his sub-
jects and his kingdom." "If you knew," says an-
other of his panegyrists, "the towardness of that
young Prince, your hearts would melt to hear
him named; the beautifullest creature that liveth
under the sun; the wittiest, the most amiable, and
the gentlest thing of all the world."
On the evening of the sixth of July, 1553, the
King's attendants heard him speaking softly to
himself. In answer to their inquiries Edward
said-" I was praying to God," and then ex-
claimed-" Oh I I am faint. Lord have mercy
on me, and receive my spirit, for thy Son Jesus
Christ's sake!" and the heroic boy King Edward
was no more.
The Boyhoodbof 01ier Cromwell.
OLIVER CROMWELL, notwithstanding his "usurpa-
tion of authority in England," had many rare and
noble qualities. He had a strict regard for justice
as well as for truth, and although severe as a ruler
was humane as a man. In his boyhood he exhi-
Dited many trats of generous and noble conduct,
which proved him to have the seeds of greatness
within him. He s born at Huntingdon, on
25th of April, 1559. "He was educated with great
care by his father, Robert CromWell, proprietor of
the borough of Huntingdon, who sent him to
school, andaftlerwards to finish his education at
Cambridge University.- At Sydney Sussex College,
Cambridge,-Olver was famous for his excellence
in all athletic exercises; so much so, indeed, as to
have acquired for him the character of an idler.
But he did not neglect his studies, and on the
death of his father, when he was removed from
college, and was placed-as it is generally be-
lieved -as a student in one of the Inns of Court,
he soon exhibited signs of great self-will and no
little knowledge. But even when studying the
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
law, it is said he wasted his time in dissipation,
good fellowship, and gaming." Even when he
returned to his paternal home at Huntingdon, he
is reported to have led a low and irregular course
of life. But whatever may have been his youth-
ful follies, it is certain that he abandoned them as
he grew to man's estate; and that when fortune
raised him into the position of Protector of
England, he was not only the greatest captain of
his age, but that he was devoted to religion and
the patronage of learning and learned men. The
immortal Milton was in his service as secretary;
Andrew Marvell was at once his friend and
counsellor, and from Oliver the great Archbishop
Ussher received a pension.
Many strange stories are told of Cromwell's
boyhood. When at his uncle's house at Hinchin-
brook, in 1604, the royal family rested there on
their way from Scotland. It is related that on
that occasion the Prince Charles, then Duke of
York, was allowed to play with him. The boys
quarrelled, and Oliver beat his royal playmate,
and bruised his nose so as to make it bleed pro-
fusely. This anecdote was remembered afterwards,
and when Cromwell began to take a leading part
in the Civil War, was related as a bad omen.
That Oliver was ambitious and wished to be King
there is little doubt. When at the height of his
fortune, he is said to have told his friends, that
when a boy, a gigantic figure appeared to him in
the night, and drawing aside the curtains of his
bed, told him he was destined to become the
greatest man of his age and country!
During one of the school vacations, Oliver
made a visit to his father at his native town.
During his stay there a severe pestilence, called
the black fever, made its appearance in the neigh-
bourhood. The character of this distemper was
so fearful that it spread consternation wherever it
commenced its ravages. Cromwell's father was a
brewer by trade, and at the back of his business
premises were several small cottages secluded
in a crowded quadrangle. In one of these the
foreman lived, a man of great good-humour and
kindness, who had often been very obliging to
Oliver in his early boyhood, sometimes saving him
from the punishment which his own headstrong
conduct frequently merited. The pestilence seized
upon the family of this poor man. His wife was
its first victim; some of the children then fell ill,
and at last the poor man was himself attacked.
The neighbours, panic-stricken, either left the
spot or would hold no communication with the
infected house. Three nurses had left in suc-
cession, the first from sickness, and the others
from fright, and the family must have perished,
24 HEROISM OF! BEOTiOOD.
but for the generous conduct of the young
As soon as he heard that his old servant and
friend was sick, Oliver, in defiance of the danger
of infection, was at his bed-side. His father and
mother both remonstrated with him, for what
they called a tempting of< Providence, but Oliver
replied, "That not a sparrow could fall to the
ground without the Lord's special permission, and
that he wished to make himself worth many
sparrows;" and so the youtL.continued not only
to afford the most useful assistance to the family,
but cheered it up with religio-is hope and consola-
tion. At last the poor woman died, and the next
night one of the children followed her. Yet con-
stant to his post, Oliver never flinched nor fal-
tered, but, like a ministering angel, continued his
attendance upon the sick. He was for a time
physician, nurse, and housewife. He prepared
the meals of the sick family, partook of their fare,
constrained the neighbours to cherish them, called
back the fleeting and the wavering, and remained
faithful himself throughout the whole of this seri-
ous visitation. Impressed by the noble, gener-
ous, and fearless conduct of this youth, the neigh-
bours regained their courage and came to the
rescue of the stricken family, the dead bodies were
laid out in decency, and the funeral obsequies per-
formed, Oliver assisting at all the painful prepara-
tions. By degrees, the remainder of the family,
including the father, recovered, and Oliver retired
from the scene of suffering, unscathed. The pesti-
lence passed away, but not so the heroic conduct
of the young man, who had soon to perform a
highly conspicuous part on the world's great stage.
His heroism remains like the fragrance of some
sweet flower long perished, to incite others to
holy deeds of elevation and of daring; and Peter
Parley truly hopes that many who read this
account of Oliver Cromwell may be enabled to
imitate all the brighter and purer shades of his
"__ ^.. i""
THE FACTORY BOY WHO BECAME A GREAT TRAVELLER.
IT is a remarkable and encouraging fact, that the
majority of the great men of modern times have
made their fame rather than inherited it. They
have risen from the ranks of the people, and not
from the exclusive circles of wealth and aristocracy.
"Some men," says Shakspere, "are born to
greatness, some achieve greatness, and some have
greatness thrust upon them." The heroes of
whom this volume treats, belong to the category
of those who have achieved fame, and honour, and
worldly distinction, by force of talent and indomi-
table perseverance. It is well, perhaps, to be
born rich and noble, to look back on a long line
of worthy ancestors, and to live out our lives in
accordance with the traditions of name and family;
but how much better is it to win nobility from ob-
sourity, and by our own industry to found names
honoured among men and cherished by our chil-
Among the men who have won distinction from
very small and mean beginnings, David Living-
stone occupies a very high and important place.
DAVID LIVINGSTONE. 27
He was the son of a poor tea-dealer, in the vil-
lage of Blantyre, where he was born in the year
1817. But though his parents were very humble,
there were traditions of honour and glory in his
family that may possibly have fired his young am
bition. His great-grandfather was a soldier, and
fell at the famous battle of Culloden; and when
David was yet a child, his grandfather frequently
delighted him with the recital of romantic legends
and national songs. Moreover, the old man was
fond of talking about his family, which he could
trace for six generations. The great-great-grand-
father of the future African traveller seems to
have been a man of more than ordinary capacity,
though occupying only the social position of a
poor fisherman; for on his death-bed, he called his
children about him, and, instead of money, gave
them a good moral precept by way of legacy. "I
have searched," said he, "through all the records
and traditions of the Livingstones, and I have not
been able to find a trace of one dishonest man in
our family. If, therefore, any one of you or your
children take to dishonest ways, it will not be be-
cause dishonesty runs in our blood. Honour and
integrity I inherited from my ancestors, and I
leave them an unspotted legacy to you. My dying
precept, children, is this-Be honest!"
When David was yet a child his father removed
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
to Glasgow, which city-the Liverpool of Scotland
-may well be proud of the fame of the lad, who
obtained his first glimpses of learning among the
whirring wheels and multitudinous noises of one
of the cotton factories. At ten years of age he
was set to earn his own living; but instead of
contenting himself by simply becoming a cotton-
spinner, he prepared his mind, by reading and
study, for the great work of missionary enterprise
and travel which has since made him famous. He
himself tells us, that in his tenth year he was sent
into a cotton factory as a piercer." His wages
were only a few shillings a week, but he contrived
not only to take some of his earnings home to his
mother, in order that he might assist in supporting
the family, but also to buy books, and so satisfy
the great need of his active mind. "With a part
of my first week's wages," he says, "I purchased
Ruddiman's Rudiments of Latin,' and pursued
the study of the language for many years after-
wards, with unabated ardour, at an evening school,
which met between the hours of eight and ten.
The dictionary part of my labours was followed up
till twelve o'clock or later, if my mother did not
interfere by jumping up and snatching the book out
of my hands. I had to be back in the factory by
six in the morning, and continue my work, with
intervals for breakfast and dinner, until eight
o'clock in the evening. I read in this way many
of the classical authors, and knew Virgil and
Horace better at sixteen than I do now. Our school-
master was supported in part by the company; he
was attentive and kind, and so moderate in
his charges that all who wished for education
might obtain it."
At this evening school young Livingstone made
acquaintance with the great men of the past, and
their example stirred his mind to high achieve-
ments. He determined to free himself from the
trammels of sordid labour, and to become at least
a diligent student if not a learned man. His at-
tention was particularly directed to medicine and
botany. "In recognizing," he says, "the plants
in my first medical book-that extraordinary old
work on astrological medicine, Culpepper's Her-
bal '-I had the guidance of a book on the plants
of Lanarkshire, by Patrick. Limited as was my
time, I found opportunities to scour the whole
country side, 'collecting samples.' Deep and
anxious were my studies on the still deeper and
more perplexing profundities of astrology, and I
believe I got as far into that abyss of fantasies as
my author said he dared to lead me. It seemed
perilous ground to tread on farther, for the
dark tint seemed to my youthful mind to loom
towards selling soul and body to the devil,' as the
0S HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
price of the unfathomable knowledge of the stars.
Excursions, often in company with brothers, one
now in Canada, the other a clergyman in the
United States, gratified my intense love of nature;
and though we generally returned so unmercifully
hungry and fatigued that the embryo parson shed
.tears, yet we discovered so many, to us, new and
interesting things, that he was always as eager to
join us next time as he was the last.
"On one of these exploring tours we entered a
limestone quarry-long before geology was so
popular as it is now. It is impossible to describe
the delight and wonder with which I began to
collect the shells found in the carboniferous lime-
stone which crops out in High Blantyre and Cam-
buslang. A quarryman seeing a little boy so en-
gaged, looked with that pitying eye which the
benevolent assume when viewing the insane. Ad-
dressing him with, How ever did these shells
come into these rocks?' When God made the
rocks, he made the shells in them,' was the damp-
ing reply. What would Hugh Miller have thought
of this Scotchman ?
"My reading while at work," he again says,
"was carried on by placing the book on a portion
of the spinning-jenny, so that I could catch sen-
tence after sentence as I passed at my work; I
thus kept up a pretty constant study, undisturbed
by the roar of the machinery. To this part of my
education I owe my present power of so completely
abstracting my mind from surrounding noises, as to
read and write with perfect comfort amidst the play
of children or the dancing and songs of savages.
The toil of cotton-spinning, to which I was pro-
moted in my nineteenth year, was excessively
severe on a slim, loose-jointed lad, but it was well
paid for; and it enabled me to support myself
while attending medical and Greek classes in
winter, also the divinity lectures of Dr. Wardlaw,
by working with my hands in summer. I never
received a'farthing of aid from any one, and should
have accomplished my project of going to China
as a medical missionary, in the course of time, by
my own efforts, had not some of my friends ad-
vised my joining the London Missionary Society;
but it was not without a pang that I offered my-
self, for it was not quite agreeable to one accus-
tomed to work his own way to become in a mea-
sure dependent on others; and I should not have
been much put about though my offer had been
The great desire of his heart was near its accom-
plishment. He was at length to be a traveller
and a missionary. He worked hard at his chosen
profession, and was admitted as a licentiate of the
College of Physicians. Owing, however, to the
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
China war, he did not proceed to the celestial
land as he intended; but in 1840 he was sent out
by the London Missionary Society to Africa.
It is not necessary to our purpose to follow Dr.
Livingstone through his remarkable career as a
man. Sufficient if we have shown what he accom-
plished in his youthful days. But we can hardly
close our brief notice without directing the atten-
tion of our young friends, to the highly interesting
work, in which the indefatigable doctor tells the
story of his mission, his travels, and his discover-
ies, in that terra incognita, Central Africa. There
among the rude natives he worked, as in his youth,
with ardour and perseverance, carrying the good
tidings of salvation to the heathen, and opening
up a new and fertile country to the commerce, the
civilization, and the Christianity of England and
No more eloquent and appropriate estimate of the
character of Dr. Livingstone has been made than
that pronounced by Mr. Gladstone, Chancellor of
the Exchequer, on the occasion of conferring upon
the great African traveller the honorary distinc-
tion of LL.D., in the Senate House of that ancient
seat of learning-Cambridge University.
"Dr. Livingstone," said the eminent orator
and statesman, "is such a man as raises our idea
of the age in which we live. That simplicity
inseparable from true grandeur, that breadth and
force, that superiority to all worldly calls and
enjoyments, that rapid and keen intelligence,
that power of governing men, and that delight
in governing them for their own good-he has
every sign upon him of a great man, and his
qualities are precisely those which commend
themselves with resistless power to the young.
Let us render to Dr. Livingstone the full tribute
of what we feel. He is a Christian, a missionary,
a great traveller; he corresponds in every parti-
cular to that great name which the admiration of
all ages has consecrated-he is a hero. Our
own great poet-the great poet of this age-
Alfred Tennyson-in his 'Idylls of the King,'
a work which has taken its place in the deathless
literature of the world, has carried us back to a
period of heroic manners, heroic deeds, and
heroic characters; but if the power which he
possesses could have gone beyond what it has
effected-could have gone beyond the almost
living men whom it has portrayed, and could
actually have evoked them from the tomb, not
one among them, though the ideal of human
nature, would have failed to recognize Dr. Living-
stone as a brother, and to acknowledge him as his
most worthy companion."
THE WORKHOUSE BOY WHO BECAME AN AUTHOR.
THE career of Dr. Kitto, author of the world-
known Pictorial Bible,' is an evidence, if any
were needed, that mpanness of birth and wretched-
ness of social position form no real barriers to ad-
vancement; but that, on the contrary, they are
powerful incentives to the honest and laudable
ambition of true heroes.
John Kitto was born in Plymouth, in 1804.
His mother was a laundress, and his father was
a drunken slater,-and something worse; so that
in his earliest years he was acquainted with
poverty and misery. Kitto's first recollections
are of an old grandmother who lived in a garret,
and who took him from his wretched home that
he might be out of the way of his father's bad
example. He was then four years old; and he
lived with his aged grandmother till he was
eight, going occasionally to a poor dame school,
where he acquired a little reading, a little
writing, and less arithmetic. But he was so
quick at learning that he was looked upon as
quite a prodigy. To what he learned at school,
his grandmother added a vast store of fairy tales
and ghost stories, besides teaching him to work
with his needle. Possibly, this story-telling
faculty gave the first literary bent to the boy's
mind; for, before he was eight years of age, he
had mastered the 'Pilgrim's Progress,' Gulliver's
Travels,' 'Robinson Crusoe,' and the historical
books of the Old Testament. So much was he
entranced with these that he decorated the rude
pictures with which the books were illustrated
with colours, obtained from his grandmother's
" blue-bag," and a few halfpenny paints that some
friends gave him. He soon became so enamoured
with reading, that he eagerly perused every
volume that came in his way. The cacoethes
scribendi was very early developed, and from read-
ing books he took to writing them. He thus
describes his first effort as an author;
"My cousin came one day with a penny in
his hand, declaring his intention to buy a book
with it. I was just then sadly in want of a penny
to make up fourpence, with which to purchase
the 'History of King Pippin' (not Pepin), so
I inquired whether he bought a book for the
pictures or the story? 'The story, to be sure.'
I then said, that, in that case, I would, for his
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
penny, write him both a larger and a better story
than he could get in print for the same sum;
and that he might be still further a gainer, I
would paint him a picture at the beginning, and
he knew there were no painted pictures in penny
books. He expressed the satisfaction he should
feel in my doing so, and sat down quietly on
the stool to note my operations. When I had
done, I certainly thought my cousin's penny
pretty well earned; and as, at reading the paper
and viewing the picture, he was of the same
opinion, no one else had any right to complain
of a bargain. I believe this was the first penny
I ever earned. I happened to recollect this
circumstance when last at Plymouth, and felt
a wish to peruse this paper, if still in existence;
but my poor cousin, though he remembered the
circumstance, had quite forgotten both the paper
and its contents, unless that it was 'something
about what was done in England at the time
when wild men lived in it;'-even this was further
than my own recollection extended."
From writing stories he took the usual course
pursued by young authors, and determined to
produce a play. We do not know what sort
of drama he wrote, but we have his own word
for it that he did write one; and, moreover, that it
was played by children-the admission to the
JOHN KITTO. 37
performance being "ladies, eight pins; gentle-
His grandmother suffering from an attack of
paralysis, he was obliged to go back to his father's
miserable home. Finding no comfort there, he
took refuge with a barber, to whom he was
apprenticed. But before he learned to "shave
for a penny," a woman whom he left in charge
of his master's razors, decamped with them,
and allowed the suspicion of the theft to fall on
the unfortunate lad. The barber would not, for
a long time, believe in his apprentice's innocence,
and fortunately for the after-career of the boy,
insisted on cancelling his indentures.
John then returned to his father, whom he
assisted in his work. But one day he had the
misfortune to fall from a ladder as he was hand-
ing up slates to his father, and sustained such
injuries as confined him to his bed for four
months. When he partially recovered, he found
he was deaf.
Kitto was unwilling to believe, or did not
comprehend, the extent of the calamity that had
befallen him. I was slow in learning," he says,
"that my hearing was entirely gone. The
unusual stillness of all things was grateful to me
in my utter exhaustion; and if, in this half-
awakened state, a thought of the matter entered
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
my mind, I ascribed it to the unusual care and
success of my friends in preserving silence around
me. I saw them talking, indeed, to one another,
and thought that, out of regard to my feeble
condition, they spoke in whispers, because I
heard them not. The truth was revealed to me
in consequence of my solicitude about the book
which had so much interested me on the day of
my fall. It had, it seems, been reclaimed by the
good old man who had lent it to me, and who
doubtless concluded that I should have no more
need of books in this life. He was wrong, for
there has been nothing in this life which I have
needed more. I asked for this book with much
earnestness, and was answered by signs, which I
could not comprehend. 'Why do you not speak ?'
I cried; 'pray let me have the book.' This
seemed to create some confusion; and at length
some one, more clever than the rest, hit upon
the happy expedient of writing upon a slate that
the book had been reclaimed by the owner, and
that I could not, in my weak state, be allowed
to read. 'But,' I said, in great astonishment,
'why do you write to me? why not speak?
Speak! speak Those who stood around the
bed exchanged significant looks of concern, and
the writer soon displayed upon his slate the awful
words, YOU AIE DEAF 1 "
Then John Kitto felt wretched indeed; but
his spirit was not entirely broken. He rose from
his bed and tried various small means of obtain-
ing a living. At one time he would wander about
on the sea-shore, and pick up pieces of rope and
driftwood; at another he would try his hand at
rude paintings of ships, flowers, birds, and trees,
which he exposed for sale in his mother's window;
and again he would endeavour to earn a few
pence by writing placards, &c. But all the
money he- earned was as nothing to his needs.
Books were necessary to his life-reading his
grand resource-writing the relief he sought
from mental depression and bodily pain. Writing
afterwards of this period of his life, he says-
"For many years I had no views towards
literature beyond the instruction and solace of
my own mind; and, under these views, and in the
absence of other mental stimulants, the pursuit of
it eventually became a passion, which devoured
all others. I take no merit for the industry and
application with which I pursued this object, nor
for the ingenious contrivances by which I sought
to shorten the hours of needful rest, that I might
have the more time for making myself acquainted
with the minds of other men. The reward was
great and immediate, and I was only preferring
the gratification which seemed to me the highest.
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Nevertheless, now that I am, in fact, another
being, having but slight connection, excepting in
so far as the child is father to the man,' with my
former self; now that much has become a business
which was then simply a joy; and now that I
am gotten old in experiences if not in years, it
does somewhat move me to look back upon that
poor and deaf boy, in his utter loneliness, devot-
ing himself to objects in which none around
him could sympathize, and to pursuits which
none could even understand. The eagerness
with which he sought books, and the devoted
attention with which he read them, was simply an
unaccountable fancy in their view; and the hours
which he strove to gain for writing that which
was destined for no other eyes than his own, was
no more than an innocent folly, good for keeping
him quiet and out of harm's way, but of no
possible use on earth. This want of the en-
couragement which sympathy and appreciation
give, and which cultivated friends are so anxious
to bestow on the studious application of their
young people, I now count among the sorest trials
of that day, and it serves me now as a measure
for the intensity of my devotementto such objects,
that I felt so much encouragement within as not
to need or care much for the sympathies and
encouragements which are, in ordinary circum.
stances, held of so much importance. I under-
value them not; on the contrary, an undefinable
craving was often felt for sympathy and apprecia-
tion in pursuits so dear to me; but to want this
was one of the disqualifications of my condition,
quite as much so as my deafness itself; and in the
same degree in which I submitted to my deafness
as a dispensation from Providence towards me,
did I submit to this as a necessary consequence.
It was, however, one of the peculiarities of my
condition that I was then, as I ever have been,
too much shut up. With the same dispositions
and habits, without being deaf, it would have
been easy to have found companions who would
have understood me, and sympathized with my
love for books and study, my progress in which
might also have been much advanced by such
intercommunication. As it was, the shyness and
reserve which the deaf usually exhibit, gave
increased effect to the physical disqualification,
and precluded me from seeking, and kept me from
incidentally finding, beyond the narrow sphere in
which I moved, the sympathies which were not
found in it. As time passed, my mind became
filled with ideas and sentiments, and with various
knowledge of things new and old, all of which
were as the things of another world to those among
whom my lot was cast. The conviction of this
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
completed my isolation; and eventually all my
human interests were concentrated in these points
-to get books, and, as they were mostly borrowed,
to preserve the most valuable points in their
contents, either by extracts or by a distinct in-
tention-to impress them on the memory."
His grandmother was unable to contribute to
his necessities; and so as he was left entirely to
the mercies of his drunken father, he had no re-
source from starvation but the workhouse. And
so, at last, he became an inmate of the Plymouth
But there he was kindly treated, and taught
various useful arts-among others that of making
list shoes. While in the workhouse he regularly
kept a diary, from which we make an extract or
"I was to-day most wrongfully accused of cut-
ting off the top of a cat's tail. They did not know
me who thought me capable of such an act of wan-
"June 2.-1 am making my own shoes.
"June 9.-I have finished my shoes; they are
tolerably strong and neat.
"Aug. 14.-I was set to close bits of leather.
Aug. 15.-Said bits of leather that I had closed
were approved of, and I was sent to close a pair of
women's shoes, which were also approved of.
Nov. 14.-A twelvemonth in the workhouse,
during which time I have made seventy-eight
pairs of list shoes, besides mending many others,
and have received, as a premium, one penny per
"Nov. 20.-I burnt a tale, of which I had
written several sheets, which I called The Pro-
bationary Trial,' but which did not, as far as 1
wrote, please me."
Many touching entries in the journal relate to
the dear old grandmother.-
"1819.-Granny has been absent in dock these
two days. Though but for so short a period, I
severely feel her absence. If I feel it so acutely
now, how shall I bear the final separation when
she shall be gone to that undiscovered country
from whose bourne no traveller returns ?' She
cannot be expected to live many years longer, for
now she is more than seventy years of age. 0,
Almighty Power, spare yet a few years my granny,
the protector of my infancy, and the- I cannot
express my gratitude. It is useless to attempt it."
On the 18th of the following April, his dear old
grandmother, Elizabeth Picken, died, and his sor-
row almost overwhelmed him. But when he re-
covered from his grief, he returned to his old
love of reading and writing, in which he was not
discouraged by the workhouse authorities.
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
In this way the young years of his life were
passed. In 1821, he was apprenticed to a shoe-
maker, one John Bowden, a mean, sordid man,
who took every advantage of his deafness to put
all manner of slights and mortifications upon him.
But at last he was released from his master's
tyranny. His love of reading introduced him to
many friends, among whom was Mr. Harvey, the
mathematician-and Mr. Groves, a dentist. The
former lent him books, and the latter taught him
In 1825, Kitto's first volume was published;
and from this moment he rose in the estimation of
his friends and the public. His boyhood's days
were over. By the time he was twenty, he was
engaged in various literary occupations. He
visited London, where he was introduced to Charles
Knight, by whom he was subsequently employed
in writing for the Penny Cyclopedia.' But pre-
vious to that he was enabled to indulge one of the
great wishes of his heart, and visit the East,
whither he went as tutor to the sons of his patron,
In 1850, he was selected by Lord John Russell
as a worthy recipient of Her Majesty's bounty;
and received 1001. a-year from the Civil List, on
account of his useful and meritorious literary
But he did not long enjoy this small competency.
Early application and hard work brought on a
serious illness, from which he never recovered.
He fell into the sleep of the just, in Germany, in
November, 1854, and so ended the life of the
workhouse-boy author, a man who suffered many
trials, but lived to surmount them all, and make
for himself a name which will live in English
literature as long as that literature survives. The
pauper boy became a Doctor of Divinity and a
Fellow of the Society of Antiquarians 1
Is there not encouragement in this ? Does not
the story of Kitto, the deaf author, present many
points of interest for boys ? Can any lad read this
brief and hasty sketch without feeling that there
is no condition in life so utterly mean and hopeless
as not to offer chances of honour and distinction
to him who is brave of spirit, enterprising, perse-
vering, and faithful in well doing ? Kitto was not
a learned man, but he was what is much better,-
he was a Christian. He won distinction from
low estate, and has left behind him a reputation
that will remain a worthy example of pursuit of
knowledge under difficulties. How much better
this than being born to wealth and title I
The Mysterious Artist.
SEBASTIAN GOMEZ, THE MULATTO OF MURILLO.
ONE beautiful summer morning, about the year
1630, several youths of Seville, in Spain, ap-
proached the dwelling of the celebrated painter
Murillo, where they arrived nearly at the same
time. After the usual salutations, they entered
the studio or workshop of the artist. Murillo was
not yet there, and each of the pupils walked up
quickly to his easel to examine if the paint had
dried, or perhaps to admire his work of the previous
"Pray, gentlemen," exclaimed one, by name
Isturitz, angrily, which of you remained behind
in the studio last night ?"
"What an absurd question !" replied Cordova;
"don't you recollect that we all came away to-
"This is a foolish jest, gentlemen," answered
Isturitz. "Last evening I cleaned my palette
with the greatest care, and now it is as dirty as
if some one had used it all night."
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST.
"Look I" exclaimed Carlos; here is a small
figure in the corner of my canvas, and it is not
badly done. I should like to know who it is that
amuses himself every morning with sketching
figures, sometimes on my canvas, sometimes on
At these words, Mendez, with a careless air,
approached his easel, when an exclamation of as-
tonishment escaped him, and he gazed with mute
surprise at his canvas, on which was roughly
sketched a most beautiful head of the Virgin; but
the expression was so admirable, the lines so
clear, the pose so graceful, that, compared with
the figures by which it was encircled, it seemed as
if some heavenly visitant had descended among
"Ah I what is the matter?" said a rough voice.
The pupils turned at the sound, and all made a
respectful obeisance to the great master.
"Look, Senor Murillo, look!" exclaimed the
youths, as they pointed to the easel of Mendez.
Who has painted this ? who has painted this,
gentlemen ?" asked Murillo, eagerly; speak, tell
me. He who has sketched this Virgin will one
day be the master of us all. Murillo wishes he
had done it. What a touch I what delicacy! what
skill! Mendez, my dear pupil, was it you?"
"No, Senor," said Mendez, in a sorrowful tone.
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
"Was it you then, Isturitz, or Ferdinand, or
But they all gave the same answer as Mendez.
It could not, however, come here in the night
without hands," said Murillo, impatiently.
I think, sir," said Cordova, the youngest of the
pupils, "that these strange pictures are very
alarming; indeed, this is not the first unaccount-
able event which has happened in your studio.
To tell the truth, such wonderful things have
happened here, one scarcely knows what to
"What are they ?" asked Murillo, still lost in
admiration of the head of the Virgin by the un-
"According to your orders, senor," answered
Ferdinand, "we never leave the studio without
first putting everything in order, cleaning our
palettes, washing our brushes, and arranging our
easels; but when we arrive in the morning, not
only is everything in confusion, our brushes filled
with paint, our palettes soiled, but here and there
are sketches (beautiful ones, to be sure, they are ),
sometimes of the head of an angel, sometimes of a
demon, then, again, the profile of a young girl;
or the figure of an old man; but all admirable, as
you have yourself seen, senor."
This is certainly a curious affair, gentlemen,"
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST. 49
observed Murillo; "but we shall soon learn who
is this nightly visitant." "Sebastian," he con-
tinued, addressing a little mulatto boy of about
fourteen years old, who appeared at his call, did
I not desire you to sleep here every night ?"
"Yes, master," said the boy, timidly.
Speak, then; who was here last night and this
morning, before these gentlemen came ? Ab I you
don't choose to answer," said Murillo, pulling his
"No one, master, no one," replied the trembling
Sebastian with eagerness.
That is false," exclaimed Murillo.
"No one but me, I swear to you, master," cried
the mulatto, throwing himself on his knees in the
middle of the studio, and holding out his hands in
supplication before his master.
"Listen to me," pursued Murillo. "I wish to
know who has sketched the head of this Virgin, and
all the figures which my pupils find here every
morning, on coming to the studio. This night, in-
stead of going to bed, you shall keep watch; and if
by to morrow you do not discover who the culprit is,
you shall have twenty-five strokes from the lash.-
You hear! I have said it; now go, and grind the
colours; and you, gentlemen, to work."
From the commencement till the termination of
the hour of instruction, Murillo was too much ab-
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
sorbed with his pencil to allow a word to be
spoken but what regarded their occupation, but
the moment he disappeared the pupils made ample
amends for this restraint, and as the unknown
painter occupied all their thoughts, the conversa-
tion naturally turned to that subject.
"Beware, Sebastian, of the lash," said Mendez,
"and watch well for the culprit. Give me the
You do not need it, Senor Mendez," said Sebas-
tian, quietly; "you have made it yellow enough
Do you know, gentlemen," said Isturitz as he
glanced at the painting, that the remarks of Se-
bastian are extremely just, and much to the point."
"Oh, they say that negroes have the faces of
asses, and the tongues of parrots," rejoined Mendez,
in a tone of indifference.
"Who knows," said he, for he had not digested
the Naples yellow, that from grinding the colours,
he may one day astonish us by showing that he
knows one from another."
To know one colour from another, and to know
how to use them, are two very different things,"
replied Sebastian, whom the liberty of the studio
allowed to join in the conversation of the pupils;
and truth obliges us to confess that his taste was
so exquisite, his eye so correct, that many of them
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST
did not disdain to follow the advice he frequently
gave them respecting their paintings.
It was night, and the studio of Murillo, the
most celebrated painter in Seville, was silent as
the grave.. A single lamp burned upon a marble
table, and a young boy, whose sable hue harmo-
nized with the surrounding darkness, but whose
eyes sparkled like diamonds at midnight, leaned
against an easel, immovable and still. He was so
deeply absorbed in his meditations that the door
of the studio was opened by one who several
times called him by name, and who, on receiving
no answer, approached and touched him. Sebas-
tian raised his eyes, which rested on a tall and
"Why do you come here, father?" said he, in
a melancholy tone.
"To keep you company, Sebastian."
"There is no need, father; I can watch alone."
Oh, how sad, how dreadful it is to be a slave I"
exclaimed the boy.
It is the will of God," replied the negro, with
an air of resignation.
God II pray constantly to him, father, (and I
hope he will one day listen to me,) that we may no
longer be slaves. But go to bed, father; go, go; and
I shall go to mine there in that corner, and I shall
soon fall asleep. Good-night, father, good-night."
52 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
"Good-night, my son;" and, having kissed the
boy, the mulatto retired.
The moment Sebastian found himself alone, he
said, Seventy-five lashes to-morrow if I do not
tell who sketched these figures, and perhaps more
if I do. Oh, my God, come to my aid !" And then
the little mulatto threw himself upon the mat,
which served him for a bed, where he soon fell
Sebastian awoke at daybreak; it was only three
o'clock. Any other boy would probably have gone
to sleep again; not so Sebastian, who had but three
hours he could call his own.
"Courage, courage, Sebastian." he exclaimed, as
he shook himself awake; "three hours are thine
-only three hours-then proft by them; the rest
belong to thy master, slave! Let me at least be
my own master for three short hours. So begin;
these figures must be effaced;" and, seizing a
brush, he approached the Virgin, which, viewed
by the soft light of the morning dawn, appeared
more beautiful than ever.
"Efface this I" he exclaimed, "efface this I no I
I will die first-efface this-they dare not-neither
dare I. No! that head-she breathes-she speaks !
It seems as if her blood would flow if I should
offer to efface it, and I should be her murderer.
No, no, no; rather let me finish it."
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST.
Scarcely had he uttered these words when,
seizing a palette, he seated himself at the easel,
and was soon totally absorbed in his occupation.
Hour after hour passed unheeded by Sebastian,
who was too much engrossed by the beautiful
creation of his pencil, which seemed bursting into
life, to mark the flight of time. Another touch,"
he exclaimed, a soft shade here-now the mouth.
Yes I there I it opens-those eyes-they pierce
me through!-what a forehead I-what delicacy I
Oh my beautiful-" and Sebastian forgot the hour,
forgot he was a slave, forgot his dreaded punish-
ment-all, all was obliterated from the soul of the
youthful artist, who thought of nothing, saw no-
thing, but his beautiful picture.
But who can describe the horror and conster-
nation of the unhappy slave when, on suddenly
turning round, he beheld all the pupils, with the
master at their head, standing beside him.
Sebastian never once dreamt of justifying him-
self and with his palette in one hand, and his
brushes in the other, he hung down his head,
awaiting in silence the punishment he believed
he justly merited.
Murillo, having, with a gesture of the hand,
imposed silence on his pupils, who could hardly
restrain themselves from giving way to their ad-
miration, approached Sebastian, and concealing his
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
emotion, said, in a cold and severe tone, while he
looked alternately from the beautiful head of the
Virgin to the terrified slave, who stood like a sta-
tue before him-
Who is your master, Sebastian ?"
"You," replied the boy, in a voice scarcely au-
I mean your drawing-master," said Murillo.
"You, Senor," again replied the trembling
"It cannot be; I never gave you lessons," said
the astonished painter.
"But you gave them to others, and I listened to
them," rejoined the boy, emboldened by the kind-
ness of his master.
And you have done better than listen -
you have profited by them," exclaimed Marillo,
unable longer to conceal his admiration. Gen-
tlemen, does this boy merit punishment or re-
At the word punishment, Sebastian's heart beat
quickly: the word reward gave him a little
courage; but fearing that his ears deceived him,
he looked with timid and imploring eyes towards
"A reward, Senorl" cried the pupils, in a
That is well; but what shall it be ?"
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST.
Sebastian began to breathe.
"Ten ducats, at least," said Mendez.
"No," said Gonzalo; a beautiful new dress for
the next holiday."
"Speak, Sebastian," said Murillo; "are these
things to your taste ? Tell me what you wish for.
I am so much pleased with your beautiful compo-
sition, that I will grant any request you may
make. Speak, then; do not be afraid."
Oh, master, if I dared-" and Sebastian, clasp-
ing his hands, fell at the feet of his master. It
was easy to read in the half-opened lips of the
boy and his sparkling eyes some devouring
thoughts within, which timidity prevented him
With the view of encouraging him, each of the
pupils suggested some favour for him to demand.
"Ask gold, Sebastian."
Ask rich dresses, Sebastian."
"Ask to be received as a pupil, Sebastian."
A faint smile passed over the countenance of
the slave at the last words, but he hung down his
head and remained silent.
"Ask for the best place in the studio," said
Gonzalo, who, from being the last pupil, had the
worst light for his easel.
Come, take courage," said Murillo, gaily.
"The master is so kind to-day," said Ferdinand,
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
" that I would risk something. Ask your freedom,
At these words Sebastian uttered a cry of anguish,
and raising his eyes to his master, he exclaimed,
in a voice choked with sobs, The freedom of my,
father I-the freedom of my father I"
And thine, also I" said Murillo. who, no longer
able to conceal his emotion, threw his arms around
Sebastian, and pressed him to his breast.
"Your pencil," he continued, shows that you
have talent; your request proves that you have a
heart; the artist is complete. From this day con-
sider yourself not only as my pupil, but my son.
Happy Murillo I I have done more than paint-I
have made a painter I"
Murillo kept his word, and Sebastian Gomez,
known better under the name of the Mulatto of
Murillo, became one of the most celebrated painters
in Spain. There may yet be seen in one of the
churches of Seville the celebrated picture which he
had been found painting by his master; also a St.
Anne, admirably done; a holy Joseph, which is
extremely beautiful; and others of the highest
Boyish Heroism of Sir William Jones.
As we have already said, heroism does not only
consist of deeds of exploit and adventure, but also
in struggling against adverse circumstances, when-
ever they beset us. This kind of heroism was
displayed during the boyhood of Sir William
Jones. This celebrated Oriental scholar was born
in London in the year 1746. He had the misfor-
tune to lose his father, who was an eminent ma-
thematician, when only three years old, and had
mainly to teach himself all that he knew. He
learned to read by the aid of his mother, a wo-
man of considerable learning and great good sense.
When in his fifth year he left her for school, long
before he had learned to write, he corresponded
with her by means of printed characters. It is
told of him that at this time his imagination was
wonderfully excited by the sublime description of
the angel in the tenth chapter of Revelations, and
that the impression so made was never effaced.
At last he was placed at Harrow school, under
Dr. Thackeray and Dr. Sumner, and commenced
the study of the Latin language in his ninth
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
year. In this he made very rapid progress, owing
to his contrivances to aid him in his studies. He
procured a lamp, which he took to his bedroom,
and contrived an alarm that awoke him at three
o'clock every morning, at which hour he used to
get up for study. In this he was so diligent, that
he not only outstripped all his schoolfellows in
his Latin exercises, but secretly commenced the
study of the Greek language, and at the end of
the year, at which time his tutor had intended
him to commence the study of Greek, he found, to
his astonishment, that young Jones had already
mastered the Greek grammar and the principal
difficulties of that language. At the same time,
besides the usual exercises imposed upon him, he
translated into English verse several of the epistles
of Ovid, and all the pastorals of Virgil, and he
composed a dramatic piece on the story of Me-
leager, which he denominated a tragedy, and
which during the vacation was acted by his more
intimate schoolfellows, the part of the hero being
performed by himself.
At Harrow he invented many other dramatic
pieces, and got up several very extraordinary
exhibitions. He and his associates divided the
fields and hills lying round Harrow into states and
kingdoms, like those of ancient Greece. Each of
the school heroes fixed upon some one of these as
SIR WILLIAM JONES.
their dominions, and assumed an ancient name.
Some of the schoolboys consented to be barbarians,
and, like some kings and emperors of modern
times, undertook to invade the territories of the
more civilized states, and attack their hillocks,
which were denominated fortresses. The chiefs
vigorously defended their respective domains
against the incursions of the enemy, and in these
imitative wars the young generals and statesmen
held councils, made vehement harangues, and
composed memorials-all doubtless very boyish'
but well calculated to fill their minds with ideas
of heroism, patriotism, and civil government. In
these unusual amusements Jones was always their
leader; and conducted himself with such energy,
tact, and judgment, as to obtain the name of Old
The exploits of the Spartan band," as Jones's
party was called, were very numerous. One of
these I shall relate. A poor fruit-seller had a
donkey which he used to turn out every night.
This unfortunate animal, by some means or other
being tired of thistles, found his way into the
" Parson's glebe," in which he nibbled a series of
mathematical figures, of unusual forms and di-
mensions, to the great discomfiture of the parson,
who, in the energy of his wrath, impounded the
donkey, and sent in a bill of the damage to the
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
fruit-seller. The sum charged was far too great
for the poor man to pay, and the poor donkey
languished in the pound for some days, upon the
most scanty provender, and till the bones began
to snow through his hide like that of Don
Quixote's Rosinante, and transposed the poor
east into a walking trapezeum. Jones and his
Spartans viewed the poor creature's condition
witn great sympathy; and looking upon him as
a hero deprived of liberty, determined to rescue
him from his degraded captivity. Accordingly,
mustering his band, the whole sallied forth at the
dead of the night, and, entering the pound, con-
trived by placing the donkey's forefeet on its
top and pushing him up behind, holding him up
here and pushing him along there, till at last the
animal was safely on the right side of his prison
bars. They then ornamented him with their
pocket-handkerchiefs, and rode him, one at a
time, to the hut of his master. To make all
right, they entered into a subscription among
themselves to pay the fine imposed; and had in
return the gratitude of the poor man, and the
everlasting goodwill of the ass.
The after-career of Sir William Jones fully
realized the bright hopes entertained of him. In
1764 he was entered as a student at University
College, Oxford. Here his taste for Oriental li-
SIR WILLIAM JONES.
terature was fostered; and, on the completion of
his academical career, he became, through the in-
terest of Dr. Sumner and Dr. Parr, private tutor
to Lord Althorpe, afterwards Earl Spenser. A
fellowship at Oxford was conferred upon him; and
he became one of the most celebrated and learned
men of his age and nation; and made himself
master of no fewer than twenty-eight languages-
English, Latin, French, Italian, Greek, Arabic,
Persian, Sanscrit, Spanish, Portuguese, German,
Runic, Hebrew, Bengalee, Hindostanee, Turkish,
Tibetian, Pali, Phalavi, Deri, Russian, Syriac,
Ethiopic, Coptic, Welsh, Swedish, Dutch, and
Chinese. His good feelings and generosity were
ever predominant in his character. He always set
himself against oppression and wrong; was ever
ready to defend the weak against the strong; and
died in the forty-eighth year of his age, with a
character for probity, justice, and honour which
has been seldom equalled and never surpassed.
The Little Truant.
It was bitterly cold: all the country round was
white with hoarfrost, and in the distance the
roofs of the houses and the village steeples
appeared covered with snow. The naked branches
of the trees looked like withered skeletons; icicles
usurped the place of foliage. A poor child of about
thirteen years of age, poorly clad, with stocking-
less feet and wearing a pair of clumsy worn-out
shoes, was toiling painfully along the scarcely-
defined road from Melun to Orleans; it was not a
fine broad road as at present, still less did a rail-
way whirl passengers in a few hours from Melun
tc Paris; for the time of which we are now writing
was nearly three hundred years ago, and at that
period the roads in France were furrowed with
deep muddy ruts, strewn with stones and occa-
sionally with the trunks of trees, and sometimes
all traces of these rough roads would suddenly
cease, and make it very difficult to track you
way across a common or through a wood.
It took, consequently, at that time several days
to go from Melun to Paris, and the poor boy,
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
completely ignorant of the distance, had imagined
that he could reach it that very evening. He
had been told that the Seine flowed from Melun
to Paris, and he had reasoned with himself, "It
must be very near, then; I shall arrive there as
the Seine does." Although he had set out at
daybreak, and had walked courageously all day,
night was beginning to fall, and he had not yet
caught sight of the steeple at .Orleans. He be-
gan to think he must have lost his way; but of
whom to inquire his road? By a fatality which
seemed to him as a just judgment of heaven, he
had walked since morning without encountering
a single traveller, either on foot or on horse-
back; and yet he must have relied on the assist-
ance of the passers-by, for he had started on his
wearisome journey without having tasted a single
morsel of bread. With the careless indifference
and hopefulness of childhood, he had in the early
stage of his journey walked gaily and swiftly,
even running at times to keep himself warm.
But a hungry stomach has its effect on the legs,
and he soon relaxed his pace, first walking and
then dragging himself wearily along until he at
length sank exhausted on the stump of a tree,
no longer able to find his way through the
thick flakes of snow that were beginning to fall,
and the shades of night that were fast approaoh-
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
ing. Overcome with fatigue and hunger, he ex-
claimed, "Oh my God! oh my good mother!
what will become of me !" Such expressions are
often uttered by strong men, women, and chil-
dren in deep distress; for if God is to us a protec-
tion from on high, a mother is the refuge which,
until death, never forsakes or fails us here below.
The poor little truant, therefore, in his dis-
tress called upon his mother, his mother whom
he had resolutely quitted in the. morning with-
out bidding her farewell. Just as he was begin-
ning to despair, and already felt his poor little
body becoming benumbed with cold, he heard
the clatter of horses' hoofs on the flinty road.
He sobbed more loudly, hoping to attract the
pitying notice of the travellers, and he was not
unsuccessful, for two horses were very soon pulled
up beside him.
The first was ridden by a gentleman, the mag-
nificence of whose attire was plainly seen beneath
the thick folds of his heavy travelling-cloak. He
was followed by an armed domestic.
The gentleman perceived by the expiring twi-
light the poor child lying exhausted with fatigue
What is this?" said he, touching him with
the tip of his whip; "whence come you? and
whither are you going ?"
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 65
"I come from Melun, and I wanted to go to
Orleans," replied the poor little boy, "but my
legs will not carry me any farther, and I am
dying with hunger."
"Your countenance pleases me," replied the
gentleman: then turning towards the servant;
" Give some of the contents of your gourd to this
poor little fellow to restore him; then hoist him
up in front of me like a portmanteau; my horse
goes better than yours, and as we ride along, and
so soon as he is sufficiently recovered, the little
rascal shall relate to me his story."
The servant hastened to execute the orders of
his master, and in a short time the two horses
and their riders had resumed their journey. The
motion and the cordial which he had swallowed,
in a few moments restored the child to conscious.
ness. As he clung to the saddle which the
gentleman bestrode, he thanked him warmly for
"Well, come, as we shall be obliged to slacken
our pace up this steep hill, tell me your story, and
do not lie," said the benevolent nobleman.
Oh I will not hide the truth, however bad
and disgraceful it is to me; I will not lie to you
who have saved my life. My name is Jacques;
I am the son of a poor haberdasher of Melun,
living near the church."
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
I am from Melun, too, and I can see it from
here," replied the gentleman; continue."
"I have two sisters older than myself, who
willingly assist my father in his business, whilst
I, for my part, have never had the least taste for
it. I have my mother, of whom I am the
favourite, and who, seeing my love for books, has
managed to pay for my schooling in spite of my
father, who wished to keep me at home to help
him, and always called me a lazy lout when he
found me reading. I have had this taste for
books ever since I can remember. When I went
to church of a Sunday, during divine service
I used to covet the beautiful Prayer-books that
the ministers had, and longed to possess them.
One is sometimes urged by instincts that are
stronger than ourselves, and I do not think they
always come from the evil one. I learnt to read
very quickly and without knowing how, and I
can also read the Latin psalms, and I understand
them little. But I could only read in the books
belonging to the school; I had not a book of my
own-they were too dear. My poor mother was
always promising to buy me a fine Prayer-book:
but months passed by without her ever being
able to procure the necessary amount of money.
My father kept a close watch upon her, and pre-
vented her putting anything aside. It is true
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
that we were very poor, and that the united
labour of all, scarcely sufficed to procure us a
living. I alone was idle, as my father was daily
repeating, abusing me as he did so; it seemed to
me, however, as if my mind was not idle, only
my hands refused to do the work he put into
"Yesterday my mother had gone with my
sisters to the bake-house to make the large brown
loaves that we eat: my father was called out of
doors on some little business.
"' Take care of the shop at least, lazy-bones,'
said he to me,' and above all do not touch any-
"He quitted me with a threatening gesture, and
I placed myself at the door watching the passers.
All at once I saw a hawker approach, who sold
books, and maybe on his way to the church and
the school, to endeavour to dispose of them.
"' Come this way,' said I, 'and let me look at
your beautiful books, for, as the proverb says,
Looking costs nothing.'
"' Looking would cost me my time,' replied the
hawker; 'I am in haste, and unless you are going
to purchase I cannot open my pack.'
"' Open it,' said I; I can at least buy one book.'
"The words escaped my lips, I know not how,
and it was that, that ruined me; for once spoken.
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
I would not unsay them, in dread lest the hawker
should laugh at me. He entered the shop, undid
his pack in haste, and showed me a volume of the
holy Gospel in Latin, which delighted me greatly.
That is worth a crown; you can either take
it or leave it,' said the pedlar; 'but I see that it's
too dear for you,' he added with a mocking air,
which set my blood on fire.
"' Wait a little,' I resolutely replied, and ap-
proaching the till where my father kept his
money, I shook it, opened it, and took thence a
crown's worth of change.
As soon as the hawker was gone, I hid the
book in my pocket. I trembled: I was afraid;
I understood how that I had just committed a
theft; I would fain have recalled the pedlar, but
it was now too late. What was to be done? My
father might return, from one moment to another,
and I already felt his anger falling upon me like
thunder. If even my mother had been there, she
might have been able to protect me; but in her
absence I felt myself lost. In my terror I pushed
the shop-door to, ran up stairs to the top of the
house, and barricaded myself in the little loft
where I slept. I seated myself upon my bed, and
finding that all continued silent, I ventured to
peep into my book. I took it from my pocket,
and began eagerly reading the beautiful story
TBRi LITTLE TRUANT. 69
of the passion of Christ. I only half understood
the Latin words, and I made such great efforts
to comprehend them entirely, that by degrees
I forgot my bad action, the anger of my father,
the punishment that awaited me; I forgot every-
thing except my book.
"But suddenly the sound of voices ascended
from the shop. I then understood that my father
had returned and was very angry with me. I
guessed that my mother was endeavouring to
pacify him, but without success. Oh I I would
have given the world at that moment to be a
mouse, that a cat might eat me up. I hid the book
under my mattress, and I hid myself under my
bed. Soon I heard footsteps ascending, which I
thought were those of my father, and already I
felt a shower of blows. I gained courage, how-
ever, a little, as the footsteps sounded to me
lighter, and I thought they announced the coming
of my mother or one of my sisters. Somebody
knocked at the door. 'It is I, Jacques; open
quickly,' said my eldest sister. I opened the
door, but took care to shut it again the moment
she had entered.
"' You must get away from here,' she hastily ex-
claimed, 'or father will kill you. He says that
you are a thief; that you have taken some money
out of the till.'
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
"'I took a crown to buy this book,' said 1,
taking the Testament from under the mattress.
"' You have none the less committed a robbery
on our father,' said my sister, severely. You must
conceal yourself away from here, for our father,
who thinks you are roaming about the town, de-
clares that if he finds you, he will be the death of
you, or else give you up to the magistrate as a
"The repetition of this word thief made me feel
very deeply, I assure you. I began to sob and
This is no time for crying,' said my sister.
'Pass through the yard, and go and hide yourself
at your godfather's the butcher's. My mother will
come to you there this evening.'
"I placed my book, the cause of all my mis-
fortune, between my shirt and my coat, and
took to flight, as my sister had advised. I soon
reached the house of my godfather the butcher;
but as I dared not enter, for fear of explanation
and remonstrance, I sat down in the shed where
the oxen were stalled; and feeling myself safe and
warmly sheltered there, I began reading in my
book while waiting till it should be dark enough
to allow my mother to visit me in safety. I
was able to watch for her coming from the spot
where I had stationed myself, and as soon as I
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
heard the sound of her footsteps, I sprang up to
meet her. My mother, far from frightening me
like my father, seemed to me like succour from
Heaven coming to my assistance. I fell on her
neck, and related to her with tears what I had
"'I was quite sure,' said she, as her eyes fell
upon the book which I held in my hand, 'that
you had not taken that money for bad purposes;
but your father will not listen to reason: it will
take a long while to bring him round, and in the
mean time what is to become of you, my poor
child? I had an idea of speaking to your god-
father to take you in; but your father would be
sure to hear of you, and there is no knowing what
might happen then.'
"'Yes, mother,' said I, 'I must go a long way
from here to gain my living; I want to see Paris,
and learn a great many things that my school-
fellows have told me about. I will go there.'
"'You are mad, my little Jacques: what would
become of a poor child like you in that great
"I cannot remember all I said then, in order to
persuade her that Paris would be a perfect para-
dise to me; it seemed as if a spirit within me
prompted my words while I was talking to her.
It was at length agreed between us that on the
_ I I_ _
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
very next day she should confide me to the care of
the boatmen who plied on the Seine between
Melun and Paris, and that every week she should
send me by them a large loaf, which would, at all
events, help to keep me in the great city.
But talking of bread, you have had no supper,
my poor Jacques: see, here are some nuts and a
cake which I have baked for you; eat, and then
go to sleep in this shed, since you find yourself
comfortable here, and to-morrow, at daybreak, I
will come to you again,' said my dear mother.
She departed, and when I had eaten enough,
I went to sleep on the clean straw put for the
cows, and I had a wonderful dream.
I thought I was in the palace of the King of
France, grandly dressed, and conversing familiarly
with the King's children, or rather, that they
treated me with the greatest respect, and called
me their master. What it meant is more than I
can say; but I saw such beautiful things in this
dream-monuments of all sorts, palaces, churches,
colleges, that I am certain I shall see again at
Paris; I heard so many voices calling me, that
this morning, at the first dawn of day, without
well knowing what I was doing, forgetting my
mother, and her despair when she should find me
gone, I set off running at full speed along the road
from Melun to Paris; I was so dreadfully afraid
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
that something would happen to prevent the
accomplishment of my design to go to Paris,
that I added to my bad action of yesterday the far
worse one of leaving my mother without even
bidding her good-bye. God has already punished
me; but for you, my good gentleman, I should
have died of cold upon the road, and been eaten by
"Come, come, you are not such a bad boy as 1
feared," replied the gentleman, when the child had
finished his recital; you shall pass two or three
days at Orleans to recruit your strength; then
you can continue your way to Paris, and to-mor-
row, when I return to Melun, "I will let your
mother, who must think you are lost, know what
has become of you."
Little Jacques gratefully thanked the worthy
gentleman, and kissed the hands that held the
bridle. And so they travelled on. But they
had now reached a plain, where the road before
which Orleans lay, became much better. The
horse broke into a trot again, the child re-
lapsed into silence, and remained quiet in his
seat. The gentleman imagined he was asleep
and thought no more about him; but when
they reached the door of the inn, where he
was going to put up, and gave Jacques a
gentle push to awaken him, he perceived that
74 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
he was not only unconscious, but that he was
attacked with a high fever. The cordial he
had drunk had only imparted an hour's factitious
What was to be done? The gentleman knew
the charitable and kindly nature of the good
nurses of the hospital, and thither he conducted
the little wanderer.
On the morrow he paid him a visit before re-
turning to Melun. The child's fever had abated.
but his limbs were quite stiff, and he could not
turn in his bed. The excellent gentleman con-
fided him to the care of the kind-hearted nurses,
gave him a letter of recommendation for Paris, and
departed, again promising him to go that very
evening to console his mother.
Three days of repose so completely cured little
Jacques, that at their expiration he was able to
set out again on his journey to Paris. They gave
him twelve sous and some food before he quitted
the hospital, so that he was able to accomplish
the rest of his journey with ease and comfort. As
he was quitting the hospital, so well named in
French, Hotel Dieu (God's House), for aid is
never refused to needy sufferers, he made a very
serious resolution; he determined that, if he
should ever become rich, he would endow the
hospital at Orleans.
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 75
The weather was bright and clear when he
arrived at Paris, which enabled him to go and
admire the King's Palace, the Tower of Nesle, the
Pr6 aux Clercs, the beautiful churches, and all the
monuments which adorned old Paris.
The letter which the good gentleman had given
him was for the principal of one of the numerous
colleges of Paris. He did not ask for him to be
admitted as a pupil into the interior of the college;
that would have been too much to hope for the
little truant, dressed in a poor gaberdine, and the
son of a petty haberdasher; he only requested that
he might be employed as messenger and servant
to the pupils and professors, feeling sure that he
would ultimately be admitted into the college if
he displayed any striking aptitude for study.
The master to whom little Jacques delivered his
letter was a man of naturally abrupt and hasty
"Choose your place at the college gate," said
he; "I will give orders that you shall be suffered
to remain there, and we will try and get you
some errands to do." Then, with a gesture of im-
patience, he dismissed the poor child.
But Jacques was of a resolute and persevering
nature not easily discouraged. To the walls of
the colleges, the convents, the churches, and al-
most all the public buildings of that period were
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
attached little parasitical constructions. Against
the front of the college whence Jacques had just
issued, was a cobbler's stall; another little hut
was occupied by an image-seller, who traded in
chaplets, reliquaries, and missals; then came a
little hut that just afforded shelter to a blind man
and his dog. The little truant chose himself a
place between the two pillars of a postern door
that was always kept shut. He then placed on a
very low bench, sheltered by the portico of this
door, a truss of straw which he bought for a few
pence; and having thus snugly ensconced him-
self, he supped gaily off the remainder of the
food which the good sisters had given him. The
night was rough, but he lay curled up in his
straw, and felt not its rigour. As soon as he awoke
he began to run up and down as hard as he could,
to warm himself, and it was not long before he
was perceived by the cobbler and the image man,
by both of whom he was employed in some little
commissions, in return for which they each gave
him some soup and bread, and he felt quite com-
forted by a warm meal.
At that time the students were all out-door
pupils, and in the morning as they went to
college, they saw the little errand-boy, the ex-
pression of whose countenance pleased them. He
was sitting with his legs hanging down from his
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 77
bench covered with the clean straw, and was
reading his Latin Testament.
Several of the elder pupils questioned him,
and having learned that he wished to run errands,
employed him immediately, so that he gained, the
very first day, several small pieces of money. He
arranged with the image-man to take his food and
warm himself at his stall; and, oh, acme of hap-
piness! the image-man even went so far as to lend
him some of his books to read. He lost no time
in writing to his mother, and he soon after
received information that a large loaf had been
brought to him from Melun by the boatmen of
that place. He immediately went down to the
river's bank to the part where the boatmen moor
their boats, and soon recognized in one of them
their neighbour at Melun, who, having in his turn
espied him, exclaimed-
"Holloa my little man, come on board my
boat; I have a cargo for you."
When the child went on board the boat, he
shook hands with the master, and received in his
arms an enormous brown loaf, of sweet home-
made bread. He could not look at this great
loaf of bread without feeling moved; it was his
mother who had baked it, and every week she
was to send him a similar one, in order that he
might not starve in Paris.
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
He talked with the boatman for a long time
of his good mother, then of his father and sisters,
and when he bade him good-bye, and found him
self alone in the streets of Paris, he began to
dream of what he could do to prove, some day, his
gratitude to his mother.
To cross the threshold of the college, to be
admitted there as a pupil, and become a learned
man, such were the objects he strove to attain.
But how to accomplish them? He remembered
the short and abrupt reception which the master
had given him, and hardly dared to count on his
With his thoughts occupied on these subjects,
he regained the college gates; he deposited his
large loaf in the image-man's stall, after having
cut off a great slice which he ate with avidity;
he then seated himself in his own little corner,
awaiting customers. It was the day following a
holiday, and a lady passed who was bringing her
two sons back to college.
Jacques touched his cap, according to his usual
mode of addressing the passers-by.
Look! it is our little messenger," said one of
the lads to his brother. "We must recommend
him to mamma, who can help him to earn more
money than we can," and they immediately
pointed out little Jacques to their mother. The
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
latter looked at the poor child, and was pleased
with his countenance and manners; he was at
that moment holding his Testament in his hand :
the lady having looked at the book, and questioned
Jacques, learned from him his ardent desire for
reading and instruction. "Would you like," she
kindly said, to accompany my sons every day to
the college? I will obtain permission from the
professors for you to be present at their lessons,
and you will then be always learning some-
The child, overpowered with emotion, and not
knowing how to prove the excess of his gratitude
to the kind lady, threw himself on his knees to
Some minutes after, he was admitted into the
interior of the college; the lady had recommended
him to the same master to whom he had delivered
the letter on his arrival at Paris. This time he
was much better received. The master told him
that he should have a little room to himself right
at the top of the building, and that he might, if
he pleased, while attending on the sons of the kind
lady, share the studies of the other pupils, and
that his advancement would thenceforth depend
From that time the life of little Jacques became
an ardent struggle. The large loaf which he re-
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
ceived every week from Melun secured him from
want; to this home-made bread he was able to add
a little fruit and some vegetables, and to buy him-
self a better coat with the modest wages regularly
paid him by the kind lady; and, what was to him
still greater happiness, to.buy himself a few books!
He was still very poor, but he was rich in hope-
rich in the consciousness of what was opening
before him. He never dreamed of envying the fate
of his fellow-pupils; he only thought of surpassing
them all in his studies.
It was an admirable example that was set by
this poor child of the people, waiting upon others
in play-hours, while in those devoted to lessons he
showed himself the most assiduous of them all.
He even encroached upon his hours of sleep to
study, and not having any lamp, he read and wrote
by the light of a few live embers. He soon made
rapid progress in the study of the Latin language,
but his ambition went still further; he thirsted
for a knowledge of the beautiful Greek tongue, with
which only a few of the literati of France were at
that time perfectly familiar. The most celebrated
works of Greek literature had only been printed in
Paris about twenty years before; these books were
very dear, and little Jacques was very poor; but the
strength of his will supplied the want of every-
thing. By dint of hard labour he obtained a
"The king and princess, astonished at his learning, loaded him with praise, and declared that they would take under
their protection the young Jacques."-Page. 81.
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
mastery over Greek. He followed first the course of
lectures of Bonchamps, called Evagrius, the most
learned professor of his time; and shortly after,
Francis I. having instituted a Greek chair, the
professors of which, two learned and erudite men,
named Jacques Thusan and Pierre Danes, were
commissioned, under the style and title of Royal
Lecturers, to teach, one the poetry and the other
the philosophy of antiquity, Jacques was to be
seen assiduously attending their lectures, ques-
tioned by them, and astonishing and dazzling
them by his replies. They confessed, at length,
that they had nothing more to teach to the won-
derful pupil, who now knew as well as they did
how to comment upon Plato, Demosthenes, and
A day came, at length, when they examined him
in presence of Francis I. and of his sister Margaret
of Navarre, who also herself understood Greek.
The king and the princess, astonished at his learn-
ing, loaded him with praises, and declared that
they would take under their protection the young
Jacques Amyot, one of the future glories of France.
On the morrow succeeding this happy day, the
boats of Melun deposited at Paris a poor man and
his wife, attired in the simple garb of the peasants
of that time. They were the mother and father of
_ ~I _I___ __
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Ah, my dear son," said his mother as she
strained him to her breast, I bring you your
father, who has forgiven you and who is very
proud of you I"
Jacques Amyot, the hero of the above little tale,
was born at Melun, October 3rd, 1513, of humble
parents, his father being a little shopkeeper of the
town. The young Amyot, evincing a distaste for
his father's business, quitted his home at an early
period, and went to Paris, travelling thither on
foot. Sinking with exhaustion and fatigue by the
way, he was conducted to the hospital of Orleans.
As soon as he was recovered, he left the hospital
with twelve sous (6d.), which were given to him,
and which constituted all his resources until his
arrival at Paris. His mother, who was tenderly
attached to him, contributed to his support by
sending him every week an enormous loaf of
bread from Melun. He installed himself in the
first instance at the gate of one of the colleges,
where he ran of errands and executed commissions
for the pupils and professors. Remarked for his
intelligence and pleasing manners, he was admitted
into the interior of the college, of which he soon
became one of the most promising pupils; for
although obliged by reason of his straitened cir-
cumstances to act in the capacity of servant to the
other pupils, that did not prevent him from prose-
THE LITTLE TRUANT.
outing his studies with the utmost ardour. At
night, for want of oil and candle, he is said to have
studied by the light of a few live charcoal embers.
After having finished his classical studies and ter-
minated his courses of lectures under the most dis-
tinguished professors, he was elected Master of
Arts. He then repaired to Bourges, to study civil
law there. There also, Jacques Collin, Reader to
the King, entrusted to him the education of his
nephews, and obtained for him a Professor's chair
for both Greek and Latin. It was during the twelve
years that he occupied this chair that he made the
translation of the Greek romance of Theagenes and
Charicles, and commenced that of Plutarch's Lives.
He dedicated the first of the Lives to Francis I.,
who ordered him to continue this translation, and
granted him, as a reward, the abbey of Bellezane.
Being desirous of obtaining possession of the
manuscripts of Plutarch which were in existence
in Italy, he repaired thither with the French am-
bassador. He was shortly after commissioned by
the latter and by Cardinal Tournon to be the
bearer of a letter to King Henry II. at the council
at that time assembled at Trent. He acquitted
himself so skilfully of his mission that, on his re-
turn to Paris, he was appointed preceptor to the
two sons of Henry II. While conducting their
education he finished his translation of Plutarch's
84 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Lives, which he dedicated to Henry II., and began
that of the moral works of the same writer, which
he did not finish till the reign of Charles IX., his
pupil, to whom he paid a similar compliment.
Immediately on his succession to the throne, King
Charles IX. appointed him his grand almoner.
Some time after, the chair of Auxerre falling
vacant, the king bestowed it upon his Master, as
he always called Amyot.
When his other pupil, Henry III., succeeded to
the throne, he confirmed him in all his offices, and
appointed him commander of the order of the Holy
Ghost, which he had just created. Amyot passed
his last years in his diocese, solely occupied with
study and the exercise of his duties. He died at
Auxerre, February 6th, 1593, in his eightieth
year. He left a fortune of 200,000 crowns. He
bequeathed to the hospital of Orleans, where he
had been sheltered in his childhood, a legacy of
1200 crowns. His translation of Plutarch is
esteemed the best in the French language.
Amiable Heroism of Louis XVII.
THE immediate successor of the unfortunate Louis
XVI. bore only for a short time the title of King
of France. After his father's execution the revo-
lutionists imprisoned him in the Temple in Paris,
in the dungeons of which he languished for a few
months, and then died, being only ten years and a
few months old. This royal youth was the second
son of Louis XVI. This unfortunate monarch
was tried by the Convention, which in 1792 de-
creed the abolition of royalty in France, and
accused the monarch of conspiracy and high
treason against the liberties of the people. He was
condemned to death by a majority of eleven votes,
and suffered death by the guillotine on the 21st of
January, 1793. Nine months after, Marie Antoi-
nette, the beloved mother of our hero, ascended
the revolutionary scaffold, and he was left an
orphan in the world. He was at his birth known
as the Duke of Normandy, but afterwards, on the
death of his elder brother, became Dauphin. Ac-
knowledged King of France by the Royalists, and
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
also by foreign powers, the provinces of La Bre-
tagne, Toulon, and La Vend6e took up arms in his
name. But they were unsuccessful, and it is
generally suspected that he died of poison in his
prison, which event occurred on the 8th of June,
Some might suppose that the life of such a child
could present few circumstances worthy of remem-
brance, but if we may credit the memoirs which
appeared after the restoration of the monarchy,
since again overthrown, there never was a prince
of the house of Capet who gave at so early an age
so bright a promise of doing justice to the ancient
motto-" Bonte et Valeur."
From the anecdotes that are related of him I
shall select a few of the more striking.
Every morning the Dauphin, while yet a child,
was in the habit of ranging through the gardens
of the Palace of Versailles, and collecting the
fairest flowers to deposit in his mother's boudoir
before she arose. When bad weather prevented
him on any occasion from gathering his usual
morning bouquet, he would say, mournfully-
"Alas! how sorry am I! Nothing have I done
to-day for my dear mamma, who has done so much
for me. But I will make her a drawing of the
flowers I would have gathered for her on my
slate, to show her that I love her."
On one of the anniversaries of his mother's birth,
the King, Louis XVI., expressed a wish to the
Dauphin that he would present his mother with an
extraordinary bouquet, and accompany it with
some compliment of his own composing. Papa,"
replied the Prince, I have a beautiful evergreen
in my garden-I would wish nothing better than
that for both my bouquet and my compliment. In
presenting it to my mamma I will say to her, My
dear mamma, may you resemble my tree, and be
always green in your age and in my remem-
One day, in a fit of absence, he had mingled
some marigolds, the emblems of care, in a bouquet
which he had designed for the Queen. Perceiving
his mistake at the moment of presenting it, he
plucked them out hastily. "Ah, mamma, you
have enough of care! I will take these away.-
But stay," he continued; and running to a bed of
Tricolor viola, or heartsease, he plucked a few, and
introducing them to the bouquet, said, There,
mamma, may I always be able to give you
In his repartees he showed an uncommon degree
of point and archness. When reading his lessons
one day he fell into a hissing tone; his preceptor,
the Abbe D'Arraux, corrected him; the Queen,
too, joined in her censures. Mamma," said the
HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.
Prince, "I said my lessons so ill that I hissed
On another occasion, when in the garden called
La Bagatelle, carried away by his vivacity, he
threw himself on a bed of roses. His attendant, who
was an English gentleman, especially retained to
speak English with him, cried out, alarmed, "Sir,
do you not know that these roses may put out
your eyes ?" The little boy arose, and regarding
him with an air as noble as decided, replied,
"Thorny ways, sir, lead to glory."
A regiment of young boys was formed at Paris
under the name of the Regiment du Dauphin."
The Dauphin was its petit colonel, and it was often
admitted to exercise before him in a small garden
of the Tuileries. In order to fulfil the duties of
his command well, he was constantly with a little
musket on his shoulder, making himself familiar
with all the manual evolutions. On one occasion,
when going out to walk, he was for carrying his
musket about with him. The officer of the Na-
tional Guard who was in attendance said, "Sir,
you are going out, you must surrender your mus-
ket." The Dauphin refused indignantly. The
Marchioness of Tourville, his governess, being in-
formed of this circumstance, reprimanded the
Prince for his indiscretion. "If," replied the
spirited boy, he had asked me to give him the
musket, I would have done so. But to ask me to
surrender it- He could add no more; a rising
flood of indignation choked his utterance.
At another time, when playing at quoits with an
officer of the National Guard, the officer gainedthe
match, and exclaimed exultingly, Ah I have
conquered the Dauphin." Piqued at the expres-
sion, the Prince replied with warmth of temper.
The affair being represented to the Queen, she rep-
rimanded the Dauphin for having so far forgotten
himself. "I feel," said the youth, that I have
done wrong; but why did he not satisfy himself
by saying that he had won the match? It was the
word conquered that put me beyond myself."
Louis, desirous of knowing the progress which
his son had made in geographical knowledge, con-
ducted him blindfold one morning to some dis-
tance from Rambouillet, and on arriving at the
open country, his Majesty delivered a compass
into the hands of the Dauphin, and said, "Now,
my son, take which road you please; I will take
another, and let us meet before night at the old
chateau." The Prince began wandering about
the fields, watched all the time by some persons
of the court disguised as peasants. He stopped
often, as if in difficulty, but although he passed
several countrymen he put no questions to them.
Every now and then he had recourse to the com-