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HEROISM OF BOYHOODOR,WHAT BOYS HAVE )DONEBYPETER PARLEY,AUTHORR OF "THE HOLIDAY KEEPSAKE," " CHIMNEY-CORNER STORIES, ETC. ETC.AND OTHER POPULAR AUTHORS." The child is the father of the man."-WoRDsWORTH.GALL & INGLIS.Dtabon: Cibinburgh:25 PATERNOSTER SQUARE. 6 GEORGE STREET.~ 4
PREFACE.THE following pages are intended to depict theHEROISM OF BOYHOOD, and especially to exhibit theheroism 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. Butnow, better taught by the experience of the past,we understand that true heroism may consist inperforming our duty in that state of life untowhich it may please God to call us. There is aheroism in refraining from evil, in speaking thetruth, in the exercise of humanity, in devotingourselves to some difficult task for the sake ofothers, and in the vindication of principle. Thegreat and good of all countries and in all agesafford instances of this in their early days; and in4
iv PREFACE.selecting a few of these from authentic sources,I feel confident in performing a service to theBoys of England, and even to England herself; asthe greatness of a nation does not consist so muchin armies, in fleets, in extended conquests, orunbounded wealth, as in the exercise of the highvirtue of our nature, in deeds of love, gentle-ness, honour, honesty, and truth.PETER PARLEY,Holly Lodge, 1865.*n~ nsc~l~lsgpbab
CONTENTS.---LC,----FAGB&STORY OF DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE 1*THE STORY OF CYUS 7STHE BOY-KING-EDWARD THE SIXTH 130THE BOYHOOD OF OLIVER CROMWELL 21SDAVID LIVINGSTONE 26o JOHN KITTO 34T THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST-SEBASTIAN GOME 46< BOYISH HEROISM OF SIR WILLIAM JONES. 574 THE LITTLE TRUANT-JACQUES AMYOT 4 62AMIABLE HEROISM OF LOUIS XVI 85HEROIC DEVOTION OF A TYROLESE BOY 91T THE TRUTHFUL SCOTCH BOY; OR, SAWNEY MACPHERSON 95: THE LITTLE HUNCHBACK-ALEXANDER POPE 990 SCHOOL FRIENDSHIP 113o THE LITTLE DRUMMER-BOY 116: MOZART, THE YOUNG MUSICIAN 119* REUBEN PEROY 131TURENNNE, THE LITTLE SOLDIER 133STHE COURAGEOUS BOY 1494
Vi CONTENTS.PAGEBOYHOOD OF THE GREAT COLBERT 151TTHE HEROISM OF TRUTH-GEORGE WASHINGTON 157ALBERT, THE SON OF WILLIAM TELL .164SBE N JA M IN F R A N K L IN T H E Y O U N G P R IN T E R 1 7 40JOSEPH HUME, THE FISHERMAN'S SON 194HEROIC DEVOTION OF TWO MEXICAN YOUTHS 199. TlHE BOYHOOD OF LINNEUS 201CIHE HEROISM OF TRUST-SIm HUMPHRY DAVY 219bWINCKELMANN, THE LEARNED COBBLER 2290 LORD NELSON 257$ GEORGE STEPHENSON-THE HEROISM OF PERSEVERANCE 266LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.PAGETHE BOY KING AND ST. GEORGE 14THE LITTLE TRUANT PRESENTED TO FRANCIS I. 81ALEXANDER POPE AND HIS AUNT 104COLBERT AND THE ROBBER 153S o153WASHINGTON AND THE CHERRY-TREE 161FRANKLIN PRACTISING ELOCUTION 175LINNaUS AND HIS FAMILY AT THEIR EVENING WORK 202WINCKELMAI READING TO HIS FATHER .231
THEHEROISM OF BOYHOOD.Story of David, the Son of Jesse.DAVID, the son of Jesse, was a shepherd boy, andkept sheep in the wilderness. No doubt the lifeof a shepherd is favourable to thought and to con-templation; and David, while watching his flocksby night, often cast his eyes upward to the gloryof the stars, and thought of the great God whomade them and the universe, and all that istherein. No doubt but this gentle shepherd boyoften poured out his soul in prayer and praise tohis Creator, and thought upon the way in whichhe might best serve him and glorify his name.The Almighty was not unmindful of the poorshepherd boy, who was anxious only to please God,while a great and powerful King disobeyed hiswill and transgressed his laws. God, therefore, de-termined to choose him to govern his people, theJews, and he sent his Prophet Samuel to Jesse,.1
2 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.saying, "Fill thine horn with oil, and go, for Ihave provided me a King among his sons." AndSamuel 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 theywere come before the Prophet, he looked on eachof them, but the Spirit of the Lord did not satisfySamuel that any of the sons present were thechosen of the Lord. And the Lord said untoSamuel, Look not on his countenance, or on theheight of his stature, for the Lord seeth not asman 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 thychildren ?" and he said-" There remaineth yet theyoungest, and behold he keepeth the sheep." AndSamuel ordered him to be brought in. Now, hewas ruddy, and of a beautiful countenance, andgoodly to look to. And the Lord said, " Arise, andanoint him, for this is he." And Samuel took thehorn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of hisbrethren.David being thus chosen of the Lord, and havinghis Spirit upon him, came down to the place wherethe armies of Israel and the Philistines were en-camped. The army of the Philistines was on amountain on one side, and that of the Israelites
DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE. 3on a mountain on the other side, and there was avalley between them.Now, the Philistines had a mighty giant, namedGoliath, who was nearly eleven feet high. Hewas armed at every point; had a coat of mail onhis body, greaves of brass upon his legs, a targetof 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 letus decide the battle;" and he vaunted and defiedthe army of the Israelites, and sorely discomfitedthem. And he presented himself before the armyfor forty days.At this time David was in the wilderness keep-ing his father's sheep, as at other times. But beingordered by his father to take provisions to hisbrothers, who were soldiers in the army of Israel,he came down to the battle-fieldjust as the armieswere about to fight, and shouting for the battle.And David came to his brethren, and salutedthem.- While he was talking with them thePhilistine champion Goliath came forth and defiedthe armies of Israel, as he had done aforetime.And when he heard him, David expressed to thoseabout him his willingness to undertake the combatwith this mighty giant; but his brothers upbraidedhim, and accused him of pride and vanity. There4
4 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.were, however, many in the army that admired hisboldness, and who believed that the Spirit of Godwas upon David; and they brought him to Saulthe King.When David came before Saul, he expressedhis willingness to fight the giant. But Saul said-" Thou art not able to go against this Philistine tofight with him, for thou art but a youth, and he isa man of war from his youth."But David said to Saul-" Thy servant kept hisfather's sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear,and took a lamb out of the flock; and I went outafter him, and smote him, and delivered it out ofhis mouth; and when he arose against me, I caughthim by the beard, and smote him, and slew him.Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear, andthis uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one ofthem, seeing he hath defied the armies of the livingGod. The Lord that delivered me out of the pawof 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 theLord be with thee."And Saul armed David with his armour, and puta helmet of brass upon his head, and he armed himwith a coat of mail; but David put them off him,and he took his staff in his hand, and chose himfive smooth stones out of the brook, and put them
DAVID, THE SON OF JESSE. 5in his scrip or shepherd's bag. Then he tookhis sling in his hand, and he drew near to thePhilistine.And when the Philistine looked about and sawDavid, he disdained him, and he said, " Am I adog that thou comest to me with a stone ? Come tome, and I will give thy flesh to the fowls of theair, and the wild beasts of the earth." David re-plied, " Thou comest to me with a sword, andwith a spear, and with a shield, but I come tothee 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 hastenedforward to meet him. David then put his handinto his bag and took from it a stone, which heput into his sling. And he slung the stone for-ward with all his strength, and smote the Philistine in the forehead, so that he fell with his faceto the earth. So David prevailed over the enemyof his people with a sling and a stone. And heran toward the Philistine and put his foot uponhis neck. But as he had no sword of his own, hedrew the giant's weapon from its scabbard, andslew him and cut off his head. And when thePhilistines saw their champion was dead, theyfled in dismay.But the Israelites pursued them, and obtained4
6 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.a great victory over them. Then David took thehead of Goliath, and brought it to Saul at Jeru-salem. And the King was greatly surprised thatthis stripling had been able to overcome the giantGoliath, and asked whence he came and who hewas. And then when Saul learned that he wasthe son of Jesse, the Bethlehemite, he took himinto his favour, and bade him stay in the royalpalace, and go no more home to the house of hisfather.My young friends will find the further historyof David in that best of all books, the Bible, andwill learn how he became King of Israel, andwhat he did, and what he wrote, and how hesometimes fell into grievous sin; for the best ofus are very imperfect and full of evil. From thehistory of David they will learn much, but theycan never forget the shepherd boy who was en-abled to display the true heroism of his nature byputting his trust in God.
The Story of Cyrus.THE BIG COAT AND THE LITTLE COAT.THE Great Cyrus was once a little boy, like allof you. But before I tell you about Cyrus as alittle boy, I must say something concerning himas a great man.Cyrus the Great was a King of Persia, and wasborn about six hundred years before the Christianera. His father was of what is called an ignoblefamily, but his mother, Mandane, was of the Royalblood, being daughter of Astyages, King of theMedes, who were then the most powerful nationof the East. It was a custom in those days thatwhen a child was born who was not wanted, eitherto kill it outright, or to expose it in some inhos-pitable place, that it might die of hunger, or bedevoured by wild beasts. Soon after his birth,Cyrus was thus exposed in a desert, but beingfound by a shepherdess, who had compassion onhim, was reared by her, and educated as her ownson."When Cyrus grew up into boyhood, he seemedto show by his conduct that he had royal blood inhis veins, for he became tbt chief or leader of all4
r8 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.his schoolfellows, who made him their leader orboy-king. When Cyrus grew older, he raised abody of troops, and made war upon his grand-father, the King of Persia, and dethroned him. Hethen subdued the eastern parts of Asia, and madewar against Croesus, King of Lydia, whom he alsoconquered. He afterwards invaded the kingdomof Assyria, and took the city of Babylon by divert-ing the channels of the Euphrates, and marchinghis troops through the dry bed of the river. Helikewise redeemed Persia from the yoke of theMedes, and himself became king, about the year560 before Christ. He subsequently commencedan expedition against the Scythians, and was de-feated in a bloody battle, losing both his crownand his life. This event occurred 529 yearsbefore the birth of Christ. Such is a short begin-ning, middle, and end of Cyrus the Great, one ofthe most notable conquerors of ancient times.Cyrus would have been a truly great king butfor his love of war and bloodshed, for he had manynoble qualities of heart, and a superior under-standing. On one occasion when at school, in hiscapacity of boy-king, he had led his schoolfellowsforth on a pomegranate expedition, in which theplantations of a poor man were invaded, and hispomegranates stolen. The depredators had gotclear off with their booty, and had returned to
CYRUS THE GREAT. 9their school without detection; but in the morningthe owner of the fruit appeared before the "Ma-gister " or master of the school, complaining of hisloss, and begging of him to make inquiries amongthe boys, as he strongly suspected some of them.The boys were then brought up and interrogated,but they all strongly denied having had any sharein the transaction, making the most ridiculousexcuses. At last Cyrus was called up, and uponbeing interrogated, at once said-" I did it. Letme 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 ismy deed, and I am ready to receive the punish-ment that is my due for being a thief. As to mycompanions in this affair, these I shall not name,I am answerable for them."This noble conduct drew forth the admirationof the Magister, who exclaimed-" Such nobleconduct is indeed worthy of a King, and yourfellows have done well in choosing you to rule overthem. That you have done wrong you yourselfadmit. 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 poorman compensation for his loss, and then come tomy heart, and be to me as a son."The same master, seeing the noble qualities of4j
10 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.this boy-king, took great pains with him, and usedto instruct him by imaginary cases: one of thesewas as follows:-There were two boys, one of whom was a great,and the other a little boy. Now it happened thatthe little boy had a coat that was very much toobig for him, and the great boy had a coat that wasvery much too small for him. Upon seeing hisown condition, and that of his fellow, the great boyproposed to the little boy an exchange. " Yourcoat," said he, " is -too large for you, and mine istoo small for me; therefore, if we change we shallboth be exactly fitted." The little boy would notconsent to the proposal, and so then the great boycalled him a fool, and took away his coat by force,and gave him his own little coat in exchange. Thegreat coat now fitted the great boy, and the littlecoat the little boy. The little boy was, however,very dissatisfied. " And now I want you," saidthe Magister to Cyrus, " to tell me what ought tobe done in such an affair. Ought the little boyto be satisfied with the coat that exactly fits himor not ?"" No, sir," replied Cyrus." And why not?" said the master." Because," said Cyrus, " it was not just for thegreat boy to take away the little boy's coat withouthis consent."
OYRUS THE GREAT. 11" You have rightly decided in this matter," re-plied the master. Thus Kings and Czars may bestill taught by the boy Cyrus.There is also an anecdote told of Cyrus whichdisplays the hero even in childhood. Being en-gaged with his youthful companions in somemerry game or romp, one of the younger of themfell into a deep ravine, at the bottom of which rana rapid stream. All the lads were horror-strickenat the accident, but none dared to descend thesteep rugged sides of the ravine in order to savethe little fellow. At length Cyrus, who was atsome distance when his young friend met withhis disaster, was made acquainted with the fact.He hesitated for an instant to consider the bestmeans of reaching the lad, who was then up tohis waist in water and was in great danger ofbeing borne away by the rapidity of the current.He soon made up his mind how to act; and inanother instant he was clambering down the ra-vine, holding on by the tufts of grass and jaggedstones that jutted out from its sides. And whenat length he reached his companion, he comfortedand sustained him till means were obtained torescue them both from their forlorn situation.This was true heroism, and worthy of his princelynature. Regardless of his own great danger, hehastened to the assistance of his friend; and weB4
12 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.may be sure that he was well repaid by the satis-faction of knowing that he had been instrumentalin doing good, to say nothing of the applause hewas sure to win from his companions. All hislife was a series of heroisms. Isaiah the prophetmentions him by name, calling him the servantof God, and telling the Jews that this princewould be employed by the Great Master to rescuethem from the hands of the Chaldeans,-~0
13The Boy King.EDWARD THE SIXTH.HOOKER says of this Prince, " that though he diedyoung, he lived long, for life is action." His wasquite the heroism of study, for at the age of fifteenhe had learned seven different languages. In thatof his own country and that of France he wasperfect, as well as in the Latin-so much so, thatwhen only seven years of age he wrote two lettersin this language to his godfather, the celebratedArchbishop Cranmer. Cardan says of him asfollows :-" In the conversations that I had withhim he spoke Latin with as much readiness andelegance as myself." He was a pretty good logi-cian; he understood natural philosophy and music,and played upon the lute. The good and thelearned had formed the highest expectations ofhim from the sweetness of his disposition, and theexcellence of his talents.In the British Museum there is a book of Ex-ercises made by the Prince, in English, Latin, andGreek, with the name of King Edward subscribedto each of them in the language in which it was4
r14 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.written; and Bishop Burnet has preserved in thehistory 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 hisperson, how kingly his bearing; and hardly anywill deny that he was a wonderful boy.In the year 1551 a grand festival of St. Georgewas held in the palace at Greenwich, after a re-ligious service, attended by the young King, theDuke of Somerset, the Earl of Warwick, and allthe nobility, Knights of the Order. Edward en-tered into his presence-chamber. " My Lords,"said he, " I pray ye what Saint is this George thatwe so honour him ?" Now these good gentlemenwere not a little puzzled at this question. True,it had often been their battle-cry upon many aglorious field, but it had never occurred to themto inquire into his history, and it is told that theMarquis of Winchester replied-" To be plain,Sire, I never did read in history of St. George, butonly in Legenda Aurea,' where it is set down thatSt. George out with his sword and ran the dragonthrough with his spear." " And, I pray you, myLord, what did he do with his sword the while ?"
I* \N Whin"-Pag 14.sr 1IFhe I ryy htsiti hi ere htw ohnuhii f iii~~P~he,~ ~ ~ I~ I pra ye wha sain is thi ere tha we ohnhim ? "-Pae 4
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH. 15asked Edward, laughing so heartily that for somemoments 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 hissister Elizabeth, then very young, was at playnear the river Thames, which abutted on the RoyalPalace, and with much of the daring which wasso fully displayed by that princess in after life,she leaped on a pony just brought up for PrinceEdward, and attempted to ride him up and downthe broad causeway before the palace. The ponybeing very fresh, and somewhat restive, plungedand capered, and at last jumped over the low wallwhich separated the river from the palace, andplunged into the river. The Prince at this mo-ment had entered the palace terrace, and hearingthe outcry, and observing his sister clinging tothe mane of the pony, which was struggling inthe river, immediately sprang on to the back ofthe horse of the groom in attendance, and plungedafter 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 Elizabethwas struggling. Seizing the bridle of her pony,he endeavoured to guide it towards the land, butthe unruly brute struggled and plunged so thatthis was impracticable. The two horses floun4
16 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.dered together for some time; at last Elizabeth,exhausted, dropped from her steed, and sank inthe rapid stream. In a few moments she roseagain, but at a considerable distance down tneriver. To this place the young Prince swam hishorse, but the Princess again sank. Leaping fromthe saddle, Edward dived after his sister, and hadthe satisfaction to lay hold of her in her descent.He rose to the surface, swam to his horse with onehand, clasping his sister with the other, and seizingthe reins, the animal quickly drew them to theshore, where they landed in safety.Many other stories are related of Edward whichwould 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 oneday 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 Bibleon a chair to stand upon, that he might the moreeasily reach the volume in request. Noticing thewant of reverence for the best of books, the youngPrince immediately expostulated with the thought-less youth, and took the book away with an air ofthe profoundest veneration; observing that thefuture glories of England lay around that book,as being the birthright of every free man.Cranmer, who was standing within hearing, could
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH. 17not restrain his admiration, and advancing, claspedhim in his arms with the most cordial affection.It is said that this noble act of respect for theScriptures 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 honourto Anne Boleyn, died on the twelfth day after hisbirth, at Hampton Court Palace; and the amiableyoung Prince during his short life had threeseveral stepmothers-Ann of Cleves, CatherineHoward, and Catherine Parr; though it does notappear that either of them paid him any greatattention, or bestowed upon him any very warmmarks of affection. He was brought up, says SirJohn Hayward, who wrote a very full and inter-esting history of his life and reign, amongnurses, 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 SirJohn, Cheke; the former of whom appears to haveundertaken the Prince's instruction in philosophyand divinity; the latter, in Greek and Latin.Doubtless he was surrounded with luxuries, andprincely means of enjoyment. It is told of himthat 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 hispleasure, reminded him that the gift was all hisown, and that he only should use it, lest othersmight injure it. " My good Hinchbrook," said thePrince, " if no one but I be permitted to touchthese valuables without spoiling them, how doyou suppose they would ever have been given tome ?" Next day Edward invited a party of friendsto visit him; and the feast was served upon theplate, and at their departure Edward gave to eachone of his young guests an article of the service,as a mark of his royal regard. In all his shortlife Edward displayed a sincere and earnest lovefor truth, religion and charity; so much so, in-deed, that even in his lifetime he was widelyknown and loved as Edward the Saint.In the spring of 1552 the boy King's healthbegan to fail, and about the same time he wasattacked by the measles and small-pox, from theeffects of which his constitution never rallied.While still suffering from these diseases he con-ceived the idea of founding and endowing anasylum for fatherless children. Christ's Hospitalwas opened in November, 1552, and the blue dressworn by the boys caused it to be known as " TheBlue Coat School." At or about the same timethe youthful King founded St. Thomas's and
KING EDWARD THE SIXTH. 19Bridewell Hospitals-Christ's Hospital for theeducation of poor children; St. Thomas's for therelief of the sick and diseased, and Bridewell forthe correction and amendment of the idle anddissolute. These three great charities are stillin active and beneficial existence. In the reign ofthis Prince there were also founded, either by him,or by great and good men who followed his royalexample, the King's School at Sherborne, still oneof our leading public schools; the BirminghamFree Grammar School, which Edward endowedwith moneys arising from the suppressed monas-teries and religious houses, and which endowmentis now worth 8,000 a year; the Free GrammarSchool at Lichfield; the Tunbridge School in Kent,which was founded by Sir Andrew Judd, whoobtained for it a charter from Edward in the verylast year of his reign; the Grammar School atBedford, and several other notable educationalestablishments.Edward the Sixth was familiar not only withthe learning and accomplishments of his time, butalso with many subjects which hardly camewithin the education and capacity of so younga Prince; for instance, the mercantile, financial,and military systems of his own country, andthose of continental nations. Had he lived, hewould have been, probably, the best of England's4
r20 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.Kings. " He gave hopes," says Lord Oxford," of proving a good king, as in so green an age heseemed resolved to be acquainted with his sub-jects and his kingdom." If you knew," says an-other of his panegyrists, "the towardness of thatyoung Prince, your hearts would melt to hearhim named; the beautifullest creature that livethunder the sun; the wittiest, the most amiable, andthe gentlest thing of all the world."On the evening of the sixth of July, 1553, theKing's attendants heard him speaking softly tohimself. In answer to their inquiries Edwardsaid--"I was praying to God," and then ex-claimed-" Oh! I am faint. Lord have mercyon me, and receive my spirit, for thy Son JesusChrist's sake!" and the heroic boy King Edwardwas no more.-~j0
21The Boyhood of Oliver Cromwell.OLIVER CROMWELL, notwithstanding his "usurpa-tion of authority in England," had many rare andnoble qualities. He had a strict regard for justiceas well as for truth, and although severe as a rulerwas humane as a man. In his boyhood he exhi-bited many traits of generous and noble conduct,which proved him to have the seeds of greatnesswithin him. He was born at Huntingdon, on25th of April, 1559. He was educated with greatcare by his father, Robert Cromwell, proprietor ofthe borough of Huntingdon, who sent him toschool, and afterwards to finish his education atCambridge University. At Sydney Sussex College,Cambridge, Oliver was famous for his excellencein all athletic exercises; so much so, indeed, as tohave acquired for him the character of an idler.But he did not neglect his studies, and on thedeath of his father, when he was removed fromcollege, 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 nolittle knowledge. But even when studying the4
r22 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.law, it is said he wasted his time in " dissipation,good fellowship, and gaming." Even when hereturned to his paternal home at Huntingdon, heis reported to have led a low and irregular courseof life. But whatever may nave been his youth-ful follies, it is certain that he abandoned them ashe grew to man's estate; and that when fortuneraised him into the position of Protector ofEngland, he was not only the greatest captain ofhis age, but that he was devoted to religion andthe patronage of learning and learned men. Theimmortal Milton was in his service as secretary;Andrew Marvell was at once his friend andcounsellor, and from Oliver the great ArchbishopUssher received a pension.Many strange stories are told of Cromwell'sboyhood. When at his uncle's house at Hinchin-brook, in 1604, the royal family rested there ontheir way from Scotland. It is related that onthat occasion the Prince Charles, then Duke ofYork, was allowed to play with him. The boysquarrelled, 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 partin the Civil War, was related as a bad omen.That Oliver was ambitious and wished to be Kingthere is little doubt. When at the height of his
OLIVER CROMWELL. 23fortune, he is said to have told his friends, thatwhen a boy, a gigantic figure appeared to him inthe night, and drawing aside the curtains of hisbed, told him he was destined to become thegreatest man of his age and country!During one of the school vacations, Olivermade a visit to his father at his native town.During his stay there a severe pestilence, calledthe black fever, made its appearance in the neigh-bourhood. The character of this distemper wasso fearful that it spread consternation wherever itcommenced its ravages. Cromwell's father was abrewer by trade, and at the back of his businesspremises were several small cottages secludedin a crowded quadrangle. In one of these theforeman lived, a man of great good-humour andkindness, who had often been very obliging toOliver in his early boyhood, sometimes saving himfrom the punishment which his own headstrongconduct frequently merited. The pestilence seizedupon the family of this poor man. His wife wasits first victim; some of the children then fell ill,and at last the poor man was himself attacked.The neighbours, panic-stricken, either left thespot or would hold no communication with theinfected house. Three nurses had left in suc-cession, the first from sickness, and the othersfrom fright, and the family must have perished,4
24 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.but for the generous conduct of the youngpuritan.As soon as he heard that his old servant andfriend was sick, Oliver, in defiance of the dangerof infection, was at his bed-side. His father andmother both remonstrated with him, for whatthey called a tempting of Providence, but Oliverreplied, "That not a sparrow could fall to theground without the Lord's special permission, andthat he wished to make himself worth manysparrows;" and so the youth continued not onlyto afford the most useful assistance to the family,but cheered it up with religious hope and consola-tion. At last the poor woman died, and the nextnight one of the children followed her. Yet con-stant to his post, Oliver never flinched nor fal-tered, but, like a ministering angel, continued hisattendance upon the sick. He was for a timephysician, nurse, and housewife. He preparedthe meals of the sick family, partook of their fare,constrained the neighbours to cherish them, calledback the fleeting and the wavering, and remainedfaithful 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 therescue of the stricken family, the dead bodies werelaid out in decency, and the funeral obsequies per-
OLIVER CROMWELL. 25formed, Oliver assisting at all the painful prepara-tions. By degrees, the remainder of the family,including the father, recovered, and Oliver retiredfrom the scene of suffering, unscathed. The pesti-lence passed away, but not so the heroic conductof the young man, who had soon to perform ahighly conspicuous part on the world's great stage.His heroism remains like the fragrance of somesweet flower long perished, to incite others toholy deeds of elevation and of daring; and PeterParley truly hopes that many who read thisaccount of Oliver Cromwell may be enabled toimitate all the brighter and purer shades of hischaracter.4
26David Livingstone,THE FACTORY BOY WHO BECAME A GREAT TRAVELLER.IT is a remarkable and encouraging fact, that themajority of the great men of modern times havemade their fame rather than inherited it. Theyhave risen from the ranks of the people, and notfrom the exclusive circles of wealth and aristocracy."Some men," says Shakspere, "are born togreatness, some achieve greatness, and some havegreatness thrust upon them." The heroes ofwhom this volume treats, belong to the categoryof those who have achieved fame, and honour, andworldly distinction, by force of talent and indomi-table perseverance. It is well, perhaps, to beborn rich and noble, to look back on a long lineof worthy ancestors, and to live out our lives inaccordance with the traditions of name and family;but how much better is it to win nobility from ob-scurity, and by our own industry to found nameshonoured among men and cherished by our chil-dren!Among the men who have won distinction fromvery small and mean beginnings, David Living-stone occupies a very high and important place.
DAVID LIVINGSTONE. 27He was the son of a poor tea-dealer, in the vil-lage of Blantyre, where he was born in the year1817. But though his parents were very humble,there were traditions of honour and glory in hisfamily that may possibly have fired his young ambition. His great-grandfather was a soldier, andfell at the famous battle of Culloden; and whenDavid was yet a child, his grandfather frequentlydelighted him with the recital of romantic legendsand national songs. Moreover, the old man wasfond of talking about his family, which he couldtrace for six generations. The great-great-grand-father of the future African traveller seems tohave been a man of more than ordinary capacity,though occupying only the social position of apoor fisherman; for on his death-bed, he called hischildren about him, and, instead of money, gavethem a good moral precept by way of legacy. "Ihave searched," said he, "through all the recordsand traditions of the Livingstones, and I have notbeen able to find a trace of one dishonest man inour family. If, therefore, any one of you or yourchildren take to dishonest ways, it will not be be-cause dishonesty runs in our blood. Honour andintegrity I inherited from my ancestors, and Ileave them an unspotted legacy to you. My dyingprecept, children, is this-Be honest!"When David was yet a child his father removedC
28 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.to Glasgow, which city-the Liverpool of Scotland-may well be proud of the fame of the lad, whoobtained his first glimpses of learning among thewhirring wheels and multitudinous noises of oneof the cotton factories. At ten years of age hewas set to earn his own living; but instead ofcontenting himself by simply becoming a cotton-spinner, he prepared his mind, by reading andstudy, for the great work of missionary enterpriseand travel which has since made him famous. Hehimself tells us, that in his tenth year he was sentinto a cotton factory as a " piercer." His wageswere only a few shillings a week, but he contrivednot only to take some of his earnings home to hismother, in order that he might assist in supportingthe family, but also to buy books, and so satisfythe great need of his active mind. " With a partof my first week's wages," he says, "I purchasedRuddiman's Rudiments of Latin,' and pursuedthe 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 uptill twelve o'clock or later, if my mother did notinterfere by jumping up and snatching the book outof my hands. I had to be back in the factory bysix in the morning, and continue my work, withintervals for breakfast and dinner, until eight
DAVID LIVINGSTONE. 29o'clock in the evening. I read in this way manyof the classical authors, and knew Virgil andHorace better at sixteen than I do now. Our school-master was supported in part by the company; hewas attentive and kind, and so moderate inhis charges that all who wished for educationmight obtain it."At this evening school young Livingstone madeacquaintance with the great men of the past, andtheir example stirred his mind to high achieve-ments. He determined to free himself from thetrammels of sordid labour, and to become at leasta diligent student if not a learned man. His at-tention was particularly directed to medicine andbotany. "In recognizing," he says, "the plantsin my first medical book-that extraordinary oldwork on astrological medicine, Culpepper's Her-bal '-I had the guidance of a book on the plantsof Lanarkshire, by Patrick. Limited as was mytime, I found opportunities to scour the wholecountry side, 'collecting samples.' Deep andanxious were my studies on the still deeper andmore perplexing profundities of astrology, and Ibelieve I got as far into that abyss of fantasies asmy author said he dared to lead me. It seemedperilous ground to tread on farther, for thedark tint seemed to my youthful mind to loomtowards selling soul and body to the devil,' as the4
P80 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.price of the unfathomable knowledge of the stars.Excursions, often in company with brothers, onenow in Canada, the other a clergyman in theUnited States, gratified my intense love of nature;.and though we generally returned so unmercifullyhungry and fatigued that the embryo parson shedtears, yet we discovered so many, to us, new andinteresting things, that he was always as eager tojoin us next time as he was the last."On one of these exploring tours we entered alimestone quarry-long before geology was sopopular as it is now. It is impossible to describethe delight and wonder with which I began tocollect 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 thebenevolent assume when viewing the insane. Ad-dressing him with, 'How ever did these shellscome into these rocks?' When God made therocks, he made the shells in them,' was the damp-ing reply. What would Hugh Miller have thoughtof this Scotchman ?"1My reading while at work," he again says," was carried on by placing the book on a portionof the spinning-jenny, so that I could catch sen.tence after sentence as I passed at my work; Ithus kept up a pretty constant study, undisturbed
DAVID LIVINGSTONE. 31by the roar of the machinery. To this part of myeducation I owe my present power of so completelyabstracting my mind from surrounding noises, as toread and write with perfect comfort amidst the playof children or the dancing and songs of savages.The toil of cotton-spinning, to which I was pro-moted in my nineteenth year, was excessivelysevere on a slim, loose-jointed lad, but it was wellpaid for; and it enabled me to support myselfwhile attending medical and Greek classes inwinter, also the divinity lectures of Dr. Wardlaw,by working with my hands in summer. I neverreceived a farthing of aid from any one, and shouldhave accomplished my project of going to Chinaas a medical missionary, in the course of time, bymy 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 havebeen much put about though my offer had beenrejected."The great desire of his heart was near its accom-plishment. He was at length to be a travellerand a missionary. He worked hard at his chosenprofession, and was admitted as a licentiate of theCollege of Physicians. Owing, however, to thi
32 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.China war, he did not proceed to the celestialland as he intended; but in 1840 he was sent outby the London Missionary Society to Africa.It is not necessary to our purpose to follow Dr.Livingstone through his remarkable career as aman. Sufficient if we have shown what he accom-plished in his youthful days. But we can hardlyclose our brief notice without directing the atten-tion of our young friends, to the highly interestingwork, in which the indefatigable doctor tells thestory of his mission, his travels, and his discover-ies, in that terra incognita, Central Africa. Thereamong the rude natives he worked, as in his youth,with ardour and perseverance, carrying the goodtidings of salvation to the heathen, and openingup a new and fertile country to the commerce, thecivilization, and the Christianity of England andthe world.No more eloquent and appropriate estimate of thecharacter of Dr. Livingstone has been made thanthat pronounced by Mr. Gladstone, Chancellor ofthe Exchequer, on the occasion of conferring uponthe great African traveller the honorary distinc-tion of LL.D., in the Senate House of that ancientseat of learning-Cambridge University."Dr. Livingstone," said the eminent oratorand statesman, "is such a man as raises our ideaof the age in which we live. That simplicity
DAVID LIVINGSTONE. 33inseparable from true grandeur, that breadth andforce, that superiority to all worldly calls andenjoyments, that rapid and keen intelligence,that power of governing men, and that delightin governing them for their own good-he hasevery sign upon him of a great man, and hisqualities are precisely those which commendthemselves with resistless power to the young.Let us render to Dr. Livingstone the full tributeof 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 ofall ages has consecrated-he is a hero. Ourown 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 deathlessliterature of the world, has carried us back to aperiod of heroic manners, heroic deeds, andheroic characters; but if the power which hepossesses could have gone beyond what it haseffected-could have gone beyond the almostliving men whom it has portrayed, and couldactually have evoked them from the tomb, notone among them, though the ideal of humannature, would have failed to recognize Dr. Living-stone as a brother, and to acknowledge him as hismost worthy companion."4
John Kitto,THE WORKHOUSE BOY WHO BECAME AN AUTHOR.THE career of Dr. Kitto, author of the world-known Pictorial Bible,' is an evidence, if anywere needed, that meanness of birth and wretched-ness of social position form no real barriers to ad-vancement; but that, on the contrary, they arepowerful incentives to the honest and laudableambition of true heroes.John Kitto was born in Plymouth, in 1804.His mother was a laundress, and his father wasa drunken slater,-and something worse; so thatin his earliest years he was acquainted withpoverty and misery. Kitto's first recollectionsare of an old grandmother who lived in a garret,and who took him from his wretched home thathe might be out of the way of his father's badexample. He was then four years old; and helived with his aged grandmother till he waseight, going occasionally to a poor dame school,where he acquired a little reading, a littlewriting, and less arithmetic. But he was so
JOHN KITTO. 35quick at learning that he was looked upon asquite a prodigy. To what he learned at school,his grandmother added a vast store of fairy talesand ghost stories, besides teaching him to workwith his needle. Possibly, this story-tellingfaculty gave the first literary bent to the boy'smind; for, before he was eight years of age, hehad mastered the 'Pilgrim's Progress,' Gulliver'sTravels,' 'Robinson Crusoe,' and the historicalbooks of the Old Testament. So much was heentranced with these that he decorated the rudepictures with which the books were illustratedwith colours, obtained from his grandmother's" blue-bag," and a few halfpenny paints that somefriends gave him. He soon became so enamouredwith reading, that he eagerly perused everyvolume that came in his way. The cacoethesscribendi was very early developed, and from read-ing books he took to writing them. He thusdescribes his first effort as an author."My cousin came one day with a penny inhis hand, declaring his intention to buy a bookwith it. I was just then sadly in want of a pennyto make up fourpence, with which to purchasethe 'History of King Pippin' (not Pepin), soI inquired whether he bought a book for thepictures or the story? 'The story, to be sure.'I then said, that, in that case, I would, for his4
36 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.penny, write him both a larger and a better storythan he could get in print for the same sum;and that he might be still further a gainer, Iwould paint him a picture at the beginning, andhe knew there were no painted pictures in pennybooks. He expressed the satisfaction he shouldfeel in my doing so, and sat down quietly onthe stool to note my operations. When I haddone, I certainly thought my cousin's pennypretty well earned; and as, at reading the paperand viewing the picture, he was of the sameopinion, no one else had any right to complainof a bargain. I believe this was the first pennyI ever earned. I happened to recollect thiscircumstance when last at Plymouth, and felta wish to peruse this paper, if still in existence;but my poor cousin, though he remembered thecircumstance, had quite forgotten both the paperand its contents, unless that it was 'somethingabout what was done in England at the timewhen wild men lived in it;'-even this was furtherthan my own recollection extended."From writing stories he took the usual coursepursued by young authors, and determined toproduce a play. We do not know what sortof drama he wrote, but we have his own wordfor it that he did write one; and, moreover, that itwas played by children-the admission to the
JOHN KITTO. 37performance being "ladies, eight pins; gentle-men ten."His grandmother suffering from an attack ofparalysis, he was obliged to go back to his father'smiserable home. Finding no comfort there, hetook refuge with a barber, to whom he wasapprenticed. But before he learned to "shavefor a penny," a woman whom he left in chargeof his master's razors, decamped with them,and allowed the suspicion of the theft to fall onthe unfortunate lad. The barber would not, fora 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 heassisted in his work. But one day he had themisfortune to fall from a ladder as he was hand-ing up slates to his father, and sustained suchinjuries as confined him to his bed for fourmonths. When he partially recovered, he foundhe was deaf.Kitto was unwilling to believe, or did notcomprehend, the extent of the calamity that hadbefallen him. "I was slow in learning," he says,"that my hearing was entirely gone. Theunusual stillness of all things was grateful to mein my utter exhaustion; and if, in this half-awakened state, a thought of the matter entered4
r38 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.my mind, I ascribed it to the unusual care andsuccess of my friends in preserving silence aroundme. I saw them talking, indeed, to one another,and thought that, out of regard to my feeblecondition, they spoke in whispers, because Iheard them not. The truth was revealed to mein consequence of my solicitude about the bookwhich had so much interested me on the day ofmy fall. It had, it seems, been reclaimed by thegood old man who had lent it to me, and whodoubtless concluded that I should. have no moreneed of books in this life. He was wrong, forthere has been nothing in this life which I haveneeded more. I asked for this book with muchearnestness, and was answered by signs, which Icould not comprehend. Why do you not speak ?'I cried; 'pray let me have the book.' Thisseemed to create some confusion; and at lengthsome one, more clever than the rest, hit uponthe happy expedient of writing upon a slate thatthe book had been reclaimed by the owner, andthat I could not, in my weak state, be allowedto read. 'But,' I said, in great astonishment,'why do you write to me? why not speak?Speak! speak!" Those who stood around thebed exchanged significant looks of concern, andthe writer soon displayed upon his slate the awfulwords,' YOU ARE DEAF "I'
JOHN KITTO. 39Then John Kitto felt wretched indeed; buthis spirit was not entirely broken. He rose fromhis bed and tried various small means of obtain-ing a living. At one time he would wander abouton the sea-shore, and pick up pieces of rope anddriftwood; at another he would try his hand atrude 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 fewpence by writing placards, &c. But all themoney he earned was as nothing to his needs.Books were necessary to his life-reading hisgrand resource-writing the relief he soughtfrom mental depression and bodily pain. Writingafterwards of this period of his life, he says-"For many years I had no views towardsliterature beyond the instruction and solace ofmy own mind; and, under these views, and in theabsence of other mental stimulants, the pursuit ofit eventually became a passion, which devouredall others. I take no merit for the industry andapplication with which I pursued this object, norfor the ingenious contrivances by which I soughtto shorten the hours of needful rest, that I mighthave the more time for making myself acquaintedwith the minds of other men. The reward wasgreat and immediate, and I was only preferringthe gratification which seemed to me the highest.4
40 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.Nevertheless, now that I am, in fact, anotherbeing, having but slight connection, excepting inso far as the child is father to the man,' with myformer self; now that much has become a businesswhich was then simply a joy; and now that Iam gotten old in experiences if not in years, itdoes somewhat move me to look back upon thatpoor and deaf boy, in his utter loneliness, devot-ing himself to objects in which none aroundhim could sympathize, and to pursuits whichnone could even understand. The eagernesswith which he sought books, and the devotedattention with which he read them, was simply anunaccountable fancy in their view; and the hourswhich he strove to gain for writing that whichwas destined for no other eyes than his own, wasno more than an innocent folly, good for keepinghim quiet and out of harm's way, but of nopossible use on earth. This want of the en-couragement which sympathy and appreciationgive, and which cultivated friends are so anxiousto bestow on the studious application of theiryoung people, I now count among the sorest trialsof that day, and it serves me now as a measurefor the intensity of my devotement to such objects,that I felt so much encouragement within as notto need or care much for the sympathies andencouragements which are, in ordinary circum.
JOHN KITTO. 41stances, held of so much importance. I under-value them not; on the contrary, an undefinablecraving was often felt for sympathy and apprecia-tion in pursuits so dear to me; but to want thiswas one of the disqualifications of my condition,quite as much so as my deafness itself; and in thesame degree in which I submitted to my deafnessas a dispensation from Providence towards me,did I submit to this as a necessary consequence.It was, however, one of the peculiarities of mycondition that I was then, as I ever have been,too much shut up. With the same dispositionsand habits, without being deaf, it would havebeen easy to have found companions who wouldhave understood me, and sympathized with mylove for books and study, my progress in whichmight also have been much advanced by suchintercommunication. As it was, the shyness andreserve which the deaf usually exhibit, gaveincreased effect to the physical disqualification,and precluded me from seeking, and kept me fromincidentally finding, beyond the narrow sphere inwhich I moved, the sympathies which were notfound in it. As time passed, my mind becamefilled with ideas and sentiments, and with variousknowledge of things new and old, all of whichwere as the things of another world to those amongwhom my lot was cast. The conviction of this4
42 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.completed my isolation; and eventually all myhuman interests were concentrated in these points-to get books, and, as they were mostly borrowed,to preserve the most valuable points in theircontents, either by extracts or by a distinct in-tention to impress them on the memory."His grandmother was unable to contribute tohis necessities; and so as he was left entirely tothe mercies of his drunken father, he had no re-source from starvation but the workhouse. Andso, at last, he became an inmate of the Plymouthworkhouse!But there he was kindly treated, and taughtvarious useful arts- among others that of makinglist shoes. While in the workhouse he regularlykept a diary, from which we make an extract ortwo :-"I was to-day most wrongfully accused of cut-ting off the top of a cat's tail. They did not knowme who thought me capable of such an act of wan-ton cruelty." June 2.-1 am making my own shoes."I June 9.-I have finished my shoes; they aretolerably strong and neat."Aug. 14.-1 was set to close bits of leather."Aug. 15.-Said bits of leather that I had closedwere approved of, and I was sent to close a pair ofwomen's shoes, which were also approved of.
JOHN KITTO. 43" Nov. 14.-A twelvemonth in the workhouse,during which time I have made seventy-eightpairs of list shoes, besides mending many others,and have received, as a premium, one penny perweek."Nov. 20.-I burnt a tale, of which I hadwritten several sheets, which I called 'The Pro-bationary Trial,' but which did not, as far as Iwrote, please me."Many touching entries in the journal relate tothe dear old grandmother:-" 1.819.-Granny has been absent in dock thesetwo days. Though but for so short a period, Iseverely feel her absence. If I feel it so acutelynow, how shall I bear the final separation whenshe shall be gone to that 'undiscovered countryfrom whose bourne no traveller returns ?' Shecannot be expected to live many years longer, fornow she is more than seventy years of age. O,Almighty Power, spare yet a few years my granny,the protector of my infancy, and the- I cannotexpress my gratitude. It is useless to attempt it."On the 18th of the following April, his dear oldgrandmother, Elizabeth Picken, died, and his sor-row almost overwhelmed him. But when he re-covered from his grief, he returned to his oldlove of reading and writing, in which he was notdiscouraged by the workhouse authorities.D4l
44 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.In this way the young years of his life werepassed. In 1821, he was apprenticed to a shoe-maker, one John Bowden, a mean, sordid man,who took every advantage of his deafness to putall manner of slights and mortifications upon him.But at last he was released from his master'styranny. His love of reading introduced him tomany friends, among whom was Mr. Harvey, themathematician-and Mr. Groves, a dentist. Theformer lent him books, and the latter taught himhis trade.In 1825, Kitto's first volume was published;and from this moment he rose in the estimation ofhis friends and the public. His boyhood's dayswere over. By the time he was twenty, he wasengaged in various literary occupations. Hevisited London, where he was introduced to CharlesKnight, by whom he was subsequently employedin writing for the 'Penny Cyclopaedia.' But pre-vious to that he was enabled to indulge one of thegreat wishes of his heart, and visit the East,whither he went as tutor to the sons of his patron,Mr. Groves.In 1850, he was selected by Lord John Russellas a worthy recipient of Her Majesty's bounty;and received 1001. a-year from the Civil List, "onaccount of his useful and meritorious literaryworks."
JOHN KITTO. 45But he did not long enjoy this small competency.Early application and hard work brought on aserious illness, from which he never recovered.He fell into the sleep of the just, in Germany, inNovember, 1854, and so ended the life of theworkhouse-boy author, a man who suffered manytrials, but lived to surmount them all, and makefor himself a name which will live in Englishliterature as long as that literature survives. Thepauper boy became a Doctor of Divinity and aFellow of the Society of Antiquarians!Is there not encouragement in this? Does notthe story of Kitto, the deaf author, present manypoints of interest for boys ? Can any lad read thisbrief and hasty sketch without feeling that thereis no condition in life so utterly mean and hopelessas not to offer chances of honour and distinctionto him who is brave of spirit, enterprising, perse-vering, and faithful in well doing? Kitto was nota learned man, but he was what is much better,-he was a Christian. He won distinction fromlow estate, and has left behind him a reputationthat will remain a worthy example of pursuit ofknowledge under difficulties. How much betterthis than being born to wealth and title!
46The Mysterious Artist.SEBASTIAN GOMEZ, THE MULATTO OF MURILLO.ONE beautiful summer morning, about the year1630, several youths of Seville, in Spain, ap-proached the dwelling of the celebrated painterMurillo, where they arrived nearly at the sametime. After the usual salutations, they enteredthe studio or workshop of the artist. Murillo wasnot yet there, and each of the pupils walked upquickly to his easel to examine if the paint haddried, or perhaps to admire his work of the previousevening."Pray, gentlemen," exclaimed one, by nameIsturitz, angrily, "which of you remained behindin the studio last night ?""What an absurd question !" replied Cordova;"don't you recollect that we all came away to-gether ?""This is a foolish jest, -gentlemen," answeredIsturitz. "Last evening I cleaned my palettewith the greatest care, and now0it is as dirty asif some one had used it all night."
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST. 47"Look !" exclaimed Carlos; "here is a smallfigure in the corner of my canvas, and it is notbadly done. I should like to know who it is thatamuses himself every morning with sketchingfigures, sometimes on my canvas, sometimes onthe walls."At these words, Mendez, with a careless air,approached his easel, when an exclamation of as-tonishment escaped him, and he gazed with mutesurprise at his canvas, on which was roughlysketched a most beautiful head of the Virgin; butthe expression was so admirable, the lines soclear, the pose so graceful, that, compared withthe figures by which it was encircled, it seemed asif some heavenly visitant had descended amongthem."AAh! what is the matter?" said a rough voice.The pupils turned at the sound, and all made arespectful obeisance to the great master." Look, Senor Murillo, look!" exclaimed theyouths, as they pointed to the easel of Mlendez."( Who has painted this ? who has painted this,gentlemen?" asked Murillo, eagerly; " speak, tellme. He who has sketched this Virgin will oneday be the master of us all. Murillo wishes hehad done it. What a touch! what delicacy! whatskill! Mendez, my dear pupil, was it you ?""No, Senor," said Mendez, in a sorrowful tone.4
P48 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD."Was it you then, Isturitz, or Ferdinand, orCarlos ?"But they all gave the same answer as Mendez." It could not, however, come here in the nightwithout hands," said Murillo, impatiently." I think, sir," said Cordova, the youngest of thepupils, "that these strange pictures are veryalarming; indeed, this is not the first unaccount-able event which has happened in your studio.To tell the truth, such wonderful things havehappened here, one scarcely knows what tobelieve.""What are they?" asked Murillo, still lost inadmiration of the head of the Virgin by the un-known artist."According to your orders, senor," answeredFerdinand, "we never leave the studio withoutfirst putting everything in order, cleaning ourpalettes, washing our brushes, and arranging oureasels; but when we arrive in the morning, notonly is everything in confusion, our brushes filledwith paint, our palettes soiled, but here and thereare sketches (beautiful ones, to be sure, they are!),sometimes of the head of an angel, sometimes of ademon, then, again, the profile of a young girl;or the figure of an old man; but all admirable, asyou have yourself seen, senor."" This is certainly a curious affair, gentlemen,"
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST. 49observed Murillo; " but we shall soon learn whois this nightly visitant." "Sebastian," he con-tinued, addressing a little mulatto boy of aboutfourteen years old, who appeared at his call, " didI not desire you to sleep here every night ?""Yes, master," said the boy, timidly."Speak, then; who was here last night and thismorning, before these gentlemen came ? Ah youdon't choose to answer," said Murillo, pulling hisear."1No one, master, no one," replied the tremblingSebastian with eagerness." That is false," exclaimed Murillo.",No one but me, I swear to you, master," criedthe mulatto, throwing himself on his knees in themiddle of the studio, and holding out his hands insupplication before his master."Listen to me," pursued Murillo. "I wish toknow who has sketched the head of this Virgin, andall the figures which my pupils find here everymorning, on coming to the studio. This night, in-stead of going to bed, you shall keep watch; and ifby 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 thecolours; and you, gentlemen, to work."From the commencement till the termination ofthe hour of instruction, Murillo was too much ab-4i
50 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.sorbed with his pencil to allow a word to bespoken but what regarded their occupation, butthe moment he disappeared the pupils made ampleamends for this restraint, and as the unknownpainter 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 theNaples yellow."" You do not need it, Senor Mendez," said Sebas-tian, quietly; "you have made it yellow enoughalready."" Do you know, gentlemen," said Isturitz as heglanced 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 ofasses, and the tongues of parrots," rejoined Mendez,in a tone of indifference."Who knows," said he, for he had not digestedthe Naples yellow, " that from grinding the colours,he may one day astonish us by showing that heknows one from another."" To know one colour from another, and to knowhow to use them, are two very different things,"replied Sebastian, whom the liberty of the studioallowed to join in the conversation of the pupils;and truth obliges us to confess that his taste wasso exquisite, his eye so correct, that many of them
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST 51did not disdain to follow the advice he frequentlygave them respecting their paintings.It was night, and the studio of Murillo, themost celebrated painter in Seville, was silent asthe grave. A single lamp burned upon a marbletable, and a young boy, whose sable hue harmo-nized with the surrounding darkness, but whoseeyes sparkled like diamonds at midnight, leanedagainst an easel, immovable and still. He was sodeeply absorbed in his meditations that the doorof the studio was opened by one who severaltimes called him by name, and who, on receivingno answer, approached and touched him. Sebas-tian raised his eyes, which rested on a tall andhandsome mulatto."Why do you come here, father?" said he, ina 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 !"exclaimed the boy."It is the will of God," replied the negro, withan air of resignation."God I pray constantly to him, father, (and Ihope he will one day listen to me,) that we may nolonger be slaves. But go to bed, father; go, go; andI shall go to mine there in that corner, and I shallsoon fall asleep. Good-night, father, good-night."4
P52 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD."Good-night, my son;" and, having kissed theboy, the mulatto retired.The moment Sebastian found himself alone, hesaid, " Seventy-five lashes to-morrow if I do nottell who sketched these figures, and perhaps moreif I do. Oh, my God, come to my aid !" Arid thenthe little mulatto threw himself upon the mat,which served him for a bed, where he soon fellfast asleep.Sebastian awoke at daybreak; it was only threeo'clock. Any other boy would probably have goneto sleep again; not so Sebastian, who had but threehours he could call his own."Courage, courage, Sebastian," he exclaimed, ashe shook himself awake; " three hours are thine-only three hours-then profit by them; the restbelong to thy master, slave! Let me at least bemy own master for three short hours. So begin;these figures must be effaced;" and, seizing abrush, he approached the Virgin, which, viewedby the soft light of the morning dawn, appearedmore beautiful than ever."Efface this !" he exclaimed, " efface this I no!I will die first-efface this-they dare not-neitherdare I. No! that head-she breathe's-she speaks !It seems as if her blood would flow if I shouldoffer to efface it, and I should be her murderer.No, no, no; rather let me finish it."
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST. 53Scarcely 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 beautifulcreation of his pencil, which seemed bursting intolife, to mark the flight of time. "Another touch,"he exclaimed, "a soft shade here-now the mouth.Yes! there! it opens-those eyes-they pierceme through!-what a forehead !-what delicacy!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 theyouthful 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 suddenlyturning round, he beheld all the pupils, with themaster at their head, standing beside him.Sebastian never once dreamt of justifying him-self, and with his palette in one hand, and hisbrushes in the other, he hung down his head,awaiting in silence the punishment he believedhe justly merited.Murillo, having, with a gesture of the hand,imposed silence on his pupils, who could hardlyrestrain themselves from giving way to their ad-miration, approached Sebastian, and concealing his4
r54 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.emotion, said, in a cold and severe tone, while helooked alternately from the beautiful head of theVirgin 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-dible."I mean your drawing-master," said Murillo."You, Senor," again replied the tremblingslave."It cannot be; I never gave you lessons," saidthe astonished painter."But you gave them to others, and I listened tothem," rejoined the boy, emboldened by the kind-ness of his master." And you have done better than listen -you have profited by them," exclaimed Murillo,unable longer to conceal his admiration. "Gen-tlemen, does this boy merit punishment or re-ward ?"At the word punishment, Sebastian's heart beatquickly: the word reward gave him a littlecourage; but fearing that his ears deceived him,he looked with timid and imploring eyes towardshis master."A reward, Senor!" cried the pupils, in abreath."That is well; but what shall it be ?"
THE MYSTERIOUS ARTIST. 55Sebastian began to breathe."Ten ducats, at least," said Mendez."No," said Gonzalo; " a beautiful new dress forthe next holiday.""Speak, Sebastian," said Murillo; "are thesethings 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 maymake. Speak, then; do not be afraid."" Oh, master, if I dared--" and Sebastian, clasp-ing his hands, fell at the feet of his master. Itwas easy to read in the half-opened lips of theboy and his sparkling eyes some devouringthoughts within, which timidity prevented himfrom uttering.With the view of encouraging him, each of thepupils 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 ofthe slave at the last words, but he hung down hishead and remained silent."Ask for the best place in the studio," saidGonzalo, who, from being the last pupil, had theworst light for his easel." Come, take courage," said Murillo, gaily."The master is so kind to-day," said Ferdinand,4
56 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD." that I would risk something. Ask your freedom,Sebastian."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 m'yfather !-the freedom of my father I""And thine, also !" said Murillo. who, no longerable to conceal his emotion, threw his arms aroundSebastian, and pressed him to his breast."Your pencil," he continued, " shows that youhave talent; your request proves that you have aheart; the artist is complete. From this day con-sider yourself not only as my pupil, but my son.Happy Murillo I have done more than paint-Ihave made a painter !"Murillo kept his word, and Sebastian Gomez,known better under the name of the Mulatto ofMurillo, became one of the most celebrated paintersin Spain. There may yet be seen in one of thechurches of Seville the celebrated picture which hehad been found painting by his master; also a St.Anne, admirably done; a holy Joseph, which isextremely beautiful; and others of the highestmerit.
57Boyish Heroism of Sir William Jones.As we have already said, heroism does not onlyconsist of deeds of exploit and adventure, but alsoin struggling against adverse circumstances, when-ever they beset us. This kind of heroism wasdisplayed during the boyhood of Sir WilliamJones. This celebrated Oriental scholar was bornin 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 hadmainly to teach himself all that he knew. Helearned 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, longbefore he had learned to write, he correspondedwith her by means of printed characters. It istold of him that at this time his imagination waswonderfully excited by the sublime description ofthe angel in the tenth chapter of Revelations, andthat the impression so made was never effaced.At last he was placed at Harrow school, underDr. Thackeray and Dr. Sumner, and commencedthe study of the Latin language in his ninth4
58 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.year. In this he made very rapid progress, owingto his contrivances to aid him in his studies. Heprocured a lamp, which he took to his bedroom,and contrived an alarm that awoke him at threeo'clock every morning, at which hour he used toget up for study. In this he was so diligent, thathe not only outstripped all his schoolfellows inhis Latin exercises, but secretly commenced thestudy of the Greek language, and at the end ofthe year, at which time his tutor had intendedhim to commence the study of Greek, he found, tohis astonishment, that young Jones had alreadymastered the Greek grammar and the principaldifficulties of that language. At the same time,besides the usual exercises imposed upon him, hetranslated into English verse several of the epistlesof Ovid, and all the pastorals of Virgil, and hecomposed a dramatic piece on the story of Me-leager, which he denominated a tragedy, andwhich during the vacation was acted by his moreintimate schoolfellows, the part of the hero beingperformed by himself.At Harrow he invented many other dramaticpieces, and got up several very extraordinaryexhibitions. He and his associates divided thefields and hills lying round Harrow into states andkingdoms, like those of ancient Greece. Each ofthe school heroes fixed upon some one of these as
SIR WILLIAM JONES. 59their dominions, and assumed an ancient name.Some of the schoolboys consented to be barbarians,and, like some kings and emperors of moderntimes, undertook to invade the territories of themore civilized states, and attack their hillocks,which were denominated fortresses. The chiefsvigorously defended their respective domainsagainst the incursions of the enemy, and in theseimitative wars the young generals and statesmenheld councils, made vehement harangues, andcomposed memorials-all doubtless very boyish'but well calculated to fill their minds with ideasof heroism, patriotism, and civil government. Inthese unusual amusements Jones was always theirleader; and conducted himself with such energy,tact, and judgment, as to obtain the name of OldUlysses.The exploits of the "Spartan band," as Jones'sparty was called, were very numerous. One ofthese I shall relate. A poor fruit-seller had adonkey which he used to turn out every night.This unfortunate animal, by some means or otherbeing tired of thistles, found his way into the"1 Parson's glebe," in which he nibbled a series ofmathematical figures, of unusual forms and di-mensions, to the great discomfiture of the parson,who, in the energy of his wrath, impounded thedonkey, and sent in a bill of the damage to theE4
60 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.fruit-seller. The sum charged was far too greatfor the poor man to pay, and the poor donkeylanguished in the pound for some days, upon themost scanty provender, and till the bones beganto show through his hide like that of DonQuixote's Rosinante, and transposed the poorbeast into a walking trapezeum. Jones and hisSpartans viewed the poor creature's conditionwitn great sympathy; and looking upon him asa hero deprived of liberty, determined to rescuehim from his degraded captivity. Accordingly,mustering his band, the whole sallied forth at thedead of the night, and, entering the pound, con-trived, by placing the donkey's forefeet on itstop and pushing him up behind, holding him uphere and pushing him along there, till at last theanimal was safely on the right side of his prisonbars. They then ornamented him with theirpocket-handkerchiefs, and rode him, one at atime, to the hut of his master. To make allright, they entered into a subscription amongthemselves to pay the fine imposed; and had inreturn the gratitude of the poor man, and theeverlasting goodwill of the ass.The after-career of Sir William Jones fullyrealized the bright hopes entertained" of him. In1764 he was entered as a student at UniversityCollege, Oxford. Here his taste for Oriental li-
SIR WILLIAM JONES. 61terature was fostered; and, on the completion ofhis academical career, he became, through the in-terest of Dr. Sumner and Dr. Parr, private tutorto Lord Althorpe, afterwards Earl Spenser. Afellowship at Oxford was conferred upon him; andhe became one of the most celebrated and learnedmen of his age and nation; and made himselfmaster 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, andChinese. His good feelings and generosity wereever predominant in his character. He always sethimself against oppression and wrong; was everready to defend the weak against the strong; anddied in the forty-eighth year of his age, with acharacter for probity, justice, and honour whichhas been seldom equalled and never surpassed.4
62The Little Truant.It was bitterly cold: all the country round waswhite with hoarfrost, and in the distance theroofs of the houses and the village steeplesappeared covered with snow. The naked branchesof the trees looked like withered skeletons; iciclesusurped the place of foliage. A poor child of aboutthirteen years of age, poorly clad, with stocking-less feet and wearing a pair of clumsy worn-outshoes, was toiling painfully along the scarcely-defined road from Melun to Orleans; it was not afine broad road as at present, still less did a rail-way whirl passengers in a few hours from Melunto Paris; for the time of which we are now writingwas nearly three hundred years ago, and at thatperiod the roads in France were furrowed withdeep muddy ruts, strewn with stones and occa-sionally with the trunks of trees, and sometimes.all traces of these rough roads would suddenlycease, and make it very difficult to track yourway across a common or through a wood.It took, consequently, at that time several daysto go from Melun to Paris, and the poor boy,
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 63completely ignorant of the distance, had imaginedthat he could reach it that very evening. Hehad been told that the Seine flowed from Melunto Paris, and he had reasoned with himself, "Itmust be very near, then; I shall arrive there asthe Seine does." Although he had set out atdaybreak, and had walked courageously all day,night was beginning to fall, and he had not yetcaught sight of the steeple at Orleans. He be-gan to think he must have lost his way; but ofwhom to inquire his road? By a fatality whichseemed to him as a just judgment of heaven, hehad walked since morning without encounteringa 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 hiswearisome journey without having tasted a singlemorsel of bread. With the careless indifferenceand hopefulness of childhood, he had in the earlystage 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 andthen dragging himself wearily along until he atlength sank exhausted on the stump of a tree,no longer able to find his way through thethick flakes of snow that were beginning to fall,and the shades of night that were fast approach-4
64 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 areoften 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 whomhe had resolutely quitted in the morning with-out bidding her farewell. Just as he was begin-ning to despair, and already felt his poor littlebody becoming benumbed with cold, he heardthe clatter of horses' hoofs on the flinty road.He sobbed more loudly, hoping to attract thepitying notice of the travellers, and he was notunsuccessful, for two horses were very soon pulledup beside him.The first was ridden by a gentleman, the mag-nificence of whose attire was plainly seen beneaththe thick folds of his heavy travelling-cloak. Hewas followed by an armed domestic.The gentleman perceived by the expiring twi-light the poor child lying exhausted with fatigueand hunger."What is this?" said he, touching him withthe tip of his whip; "whence come you? andwhither are you going ?"
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 65"I come from Melun, and I wanted to go toOrleans," replied the poor little boy, "but mylegs will not carry me any farther, and I amdying with hunger.""Your countenance pleases me," replied thegentleman: then turning towards the servant;" Give some of the contents of your gourd to thispoor little fellow to restore him; then hoist himup in front of me like a portmanteau; my horsegoes better than yours, and as we ride along, andso soon as he is sufficiently recovered, the littlerascal shall relate to me his story."The servant hastened to execute the orders ofhis master, and in a short time the two horsesand their riders had resumed their journey. Themotion and the cordial which he had swallowed,in a few moments restored the child to conscious-ness. As he clung to the saddle which thegentleman bestrode, he thanked him warmly forhis kindness."Well, come, as we shall be obliged to slackenour pace up this steep hill, tell me your story, anddo not-lie," said the benevolent nobleman." Oh! I will not hide the truth, however badand disgraceful it is to me; I will not lie to youwho have saved my life. My name is Jacques;I am the son of a poor haberdasher of Melun,living near the church."4
66 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD."I am from Melun, too, and I can see it fromhere," replied the gentleman; " continue.""I have two sisters older than myself, whowillingly assist my father in his business, whilstI, for my part, have never had the least taste forit. I have my mother, of whom I am thefavourite, and who, seeing my love for books, hasmanaged to pay for my schooling in spite of myfather, who wished to keep me at home to helphim, and always called me a lazy lout when hefound me reading. I have had this taste forbooks ever since I can remember. When I wentto church of a Sunday, during divine serviceI used to covet the beautiful Prayer-books thatthe ministers had, and longed to possess them.One is sometimes urged by instincts that arestronger than ourselves, and I do not think theyalways come from the evil one. I learnt to readvery quickly and without knowing how, and Ican also read the Latin psalms, and I understandthem a little. But I could only read in the booksbelonging to the school; I had not a book of myown-they were too dear. My poor mother wasal ays promising to buy me a fine Prayer-book:bui months passed by without her ever beingable 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. 67that we were very poor, and that the unitedlabour of all, scarcely sufficed to procure us aliving. I alone was idle, as my father was dailyrepeating, abusing me as he did so; it seemed tome, however, as if my mind was not idle, onlymy hands refused to do the work he put intothem."Yesterday my mother had gone with mysisters to the bake-house to make the large brownloaves that we eat: my father was called out ofdoors on some little business."' Take care of the shop at least, lazy-bones,'said he to me, 'and above all do not touch any-thing.'" He quitted me with a threatening gesture, andI placed myself at the door watching the passers.All at once I saw a hawker approach, who soldbooks, and maybe on his way to the church andthe school, to endeavour to dispose of them."'Come this way,' said I, 'and let me look atyour beautiful books, for, as the proverb says,Looking costs nothing.'"' Looking would cost me my time,' replied thehawker; 'I am in haste, and unless you are goingto 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.4
68 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.I would not unsay them, in dread lest the hawkershould laugh at me. He entered the shop, undidhis pack in haste, and showed me a volume of theholy Gospel in Latin, which delighted me greatly."' That is worth a crown; you can either takeit or leave it,' said the pedlar; 'but I see that it'stoo 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 hismoney, I shook it, opened it, and took thence acrown's worth of change."As soon as the hawker was gone, I hid thebook in my pocket. I trembled: I was afraid;I understood how that I had just committed atheft; I would fain have recalled the pedlar, butit was now too late. What was to be done? Myrfather might return, from one moment to another,and I already felt his anger falling upon me likethunder. If even my mother had been there, shemight have been able to protect me; but in herabsence I felt myself lost. In my terror I pushedthe shop-door to, ran up stairs to the top of thehouse, and barricaded myself in the little loftwhere I slept. I seated myself upon my bed, andfinding that all continued silent, I ventured topeep into my book. I took it from my pocket,and began eagerly reading the beautiful story
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 69of the passion of Christ. I only half understoodthe Latin words, and I made such great effortsto comprehend them entirely, that by degreesI 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 ascendedfrom the shop. I then understood that my fatherhad returned and was very angry with me. Iguessed that my mother was endeavouring topacify him, but without success. Oh! I wouldhave given the world at that moment to be amouse, that a cat might eat me up. I hid the bookunder my mattress, and I hid myself under mybed. Soon I heard footsteps ascending, which Ithought were those of my father, an4 already Ifelt a shower of blows. I gained courage, how-ever, a little, as the footsteps sounded to melighter, and I thought they announced the comingof my mother or one of my sisters. Somebodyknocked at the door. 'It is I, Jacques; openquickly,' said my eldest sister. I opened thedoor, but took care to shut it again the momentshe had entered."6' You must get away from here,' she hastily ex-claimed, 'or father will kill you. He says thatyou are a thief; that you have taken some moneyout of the till.'4
r"70 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD."' I took a crown to buy this book,' said I,taking the Testament from under the mattress."' You have none the less committed a robberyon our father,' said my sister, severely. 'You mustconceal 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 ofyou, or else give you up to the magistrate as athief.'" The repetition of this word thief made me feelvery deeply, I assure you. I began to sob andcry." 'This is no time for crying,' said my sister.'Pass through the yard, and go and hide yourselfat your godfather's the butcher's. My mother willcome to you there this evening.'"I placed my book, the cause of all my mis-fortune, between my shirt and my coat, andtook to flight, as my sister had advised. I soonreached the house of my godfather the butcher;but as I dared not enter, for fear of explanationand remonstrance, I sat down in the shed wherethe oxen were stalled; and feeling myself safe andwarmly sheltered there, I began reading in mybook while waiting till it should be dark enoughto allow my mother to visit me in safety. Iwas able to watch for her coming from the spotwhere I had stationed myself, and as soon as I
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 71heard the sound of her footsteps, I sprang up tomeet her. My mother, far from frightening melike my father, seemed to me like succour fromHeaven coming to my assistance. I fell on herneck, and related to her with tears what I haddone."'I was quite sure,' said she, as her eyes fellupon the book which I held in my hand, 'thatyou had not taken that money for bad purposes;but your father will not listen to reason: it willtake a long while to bring him round, and in themean time what is to become of you, my poorchild ? I had an idea of speaking to your god-father to take you in; but your father would besure to hear of you, and there is no knowing whatmight happen then.'"' Yes, mother,' said I, I must go a long wayfrom 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 wouldbecome of a poor child like you in that greatcity ?'" I cannot remember all 1 said then, in order topersuade her that Paris would be a perfect para-dise to me; it seemed as if a spirit within meprompted my words while I was talking to her.It was at length agreed between us that on the4
r72 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.very next day she should confide me to the care ofthe boatmen who plied on the Seine betweenMelun and Paris, and that every week she shouldsend me by them a large loaf, which would, at allevents, help to keep me in the great city." But talking of bread, you have had nosupper,my poor Jacques: see, here are some nuts and acake which I have baked for you; eat, and thengo to sleep in this shed, since you find yourselfcomfortable here, and to-morrow, at daybreak, 1will 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 thecows, and I had a wonderful dream." I thought I was in the palace of the King ofFrance, grandly dressed, and conversing familiarlywith the King's children, or rather, that theytreated me with the greatest respect, and calledme their master. What it meant is more than Ican say; but I saw such beautiful things in thisdream-monuments of all sorts, palaces, churches,colleges, that I am certain I shall see again atParis; I heard so many voices calling me, thatthis morning, at the first dawn of day, withoutwell knowing what I was doing, forgetting mymother, and her despair when she should find megone, I set off running at full speed along the roadfrom Melun to Paris; I was so dreadfully afraid
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 78that something would happen to prevent theaccomplishment of my design to go to Paris,that I added to my bad action of yesterday the farworse one of leaving my mother without evenbidding her good-bye. God has already punishedme; but for you, my good gentleman, I shouldhave died of cold upon the road, and been eaten bywolves."" Come, come, you are not such a bad boy as 1feared," replied the gentleman, when the child hadfinished his recital; " you shall pass two or threedays at Orleans to recruit your strength; thenyou can continue your way to Paris, and to-mor-row, when I return to Melun, I will let yourmother, who must think you are lost, know whathas become of you."Little Jacques gratefully thanked the worthygentleman, and kissed the hands that held thebridle. And so they travelled on. But theyhad now reached a plain, where the road beforewhich Orleans lay, became much better. Thehorse broke into a trot again, the child re-lapsed' into silence, and remained quiet in hisseat. The gentleman imagined he was asleepand thought no more about him; but whenthey reached the door of the inn, where hewas going to put up, and gave Jacques agentle push to awaken him, he perceived that
r74 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.he was not only unconscious, but that he wasattacked with a high fever. The cordial hehad drunk had only imparted an hour's factitiousstrength.What was to be done? The gentleman knewthe charitable and kindly nature of the goodnurses of the hospital, and thither he conductedthe 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 notturn 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, anddeparted, again promising him to go that veryevening to console his mother.Three days of repose so completely cured littleJacques, that at their expiration he was able toset out again on his journey to Paris. They gavehim twelve sous and some food before he quittedthe hospital, so that he was able to accomplishthe rest of his journey with ease and comfort. Ashe was quitting the hospital, so well named inFrench, Hotel Dieu (God's House), for aid isnever refused to needy sufferers, he made a veryserious resolution; he determined that, if heshould ever become rich, he would endow thehospital at Orleans.
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 75The weather was bright and clear when hearrived at Paris, which enabled him to go andadmire the King's Palace, the Tower of Nesle, thePrB aux Clercs, the beautiful churches, and all themonuments which adorned old Paris.The letter which the good gentleman had givenhim was for the principal of one of the numerouscolleges of Paris. He did not ask for him to beadmitted as a pupil into the interior of the college;that would have been too much to hope for thelittle truant, dressed in a poor gaberdine, and theson of a petty haberdasher; he only requested thathe might be employed as messenger and servantto the pupils and professors, feeling sure that hewould ultimately be admitted into the college ifhe displayed any striking aptitude for study.The master to whom little Jacques delivered hisletter was a man of naturally abrupt and hastymanners."CChoose your place at the college gate," saidhe; " I will give orders that you shall be sufferedto remain there, and we will try and get yousome errands to do." Then, with a gesture of im-patience, he dismissed the poor child.But Jacques was of a resolute and perseveringnature not easily discouraged. To the walls ofthe colleges, the convents, the churches, and al-most all the public buildings of that period wereF4
76 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.attached little parasitical constructions. Againstthe front of the college whence Jacques had justissued, was a cobbler's stall; another little hutwas occupied by an image-seller, who traded inchaplets, reliquaries, and missals; then came alittle hut that just afforded shelter to a blind manand his dog. The little truant chose himself aplace between the two pillars of a postern doorthat was always kept shut. He then placed on avery low bench, sheltered by the portico of thisdoor, a truss of straw which he bought for a fewpence; and having thus snugly ensconced him-self, he supped gaily off the remainder of thefood which the good sisters had given him. Thenight was rough, but he lay curled up in hisstraw, and felt not its rigour. As soon as he awokehe began to run up and down as hard as he could,to warm himself, and it was not long before hewas perceived by the cobbler and the image man,by both of whom he was employed in some littlecommissions, in return for which they each gavehim some soup and bread, and he felt quite com-forted by a warm meal.At that time the students were all out-doorpupils, and in the morning as they went tocollege, they saw the little errand-boy, the ex-pression of whose countenance pleased them. Hewas sitting with his legs hanging down from his
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 77bench covered with the clean straw, and wasreading 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, thevery first day, several small pieces of money. Hearranged with the image-man to take his food andwarm himself at his stall; and, oh, acme of hap-piness! the image-man even went so far as to lendhim some of his books to read. He lost no timein writing to his mother, and he soon afterreceived information that a large loaf had beenbrought to him from Melun by the boatmen ofthat place. He immediately went down to theriver's bank to the part where the boatmen moortheir boats, and soon recognized in one of themtheir neighbour at Melun, who, having in his turnespied him, exclaimed-"Holloa! my little man, come on board myboat; I have a cargo for you."When the child went on board the boat, heshook hands with the master, and received in hisarms an enormous brown loaf, of sweet home-made bread. He could not look at this greatloaf of bread without feeling moved; it was hismother who had baked it, and every week shewas to send him a similar one, in order that hemight not starve in Paris.4
P78 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.He talked with the boatman for a long timeof 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 todream of what he could. do to prove, some day, hisgratitude to his mother.To cross the threshold of the college, to beadmitted there as a pupil, and. become a learnedman, such were the objects he strove to attain.But how to accomplish them ? He rememberedthe short and abrupt reception which the masterhad given him, and hardly dared to count on hisprotection.With his thoughts occupied on these subjects,he regained the college gates; he deposited hislarge loaf in the image-man's stall, after havingcut 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 aholiday, and a lady passed who was bringing hertwo sons back to college.Jacques touched his cap, according to his usualmode of addressing the passers-by."Look! it is our little messenger," said one ofthe lads to his brother. "We must recommendhim to mamma, who can help him to earn moremoney than we can,", and they immediatelypointed out little Jacques to their mother. The
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 79latter looked at the poor child, and was pleasedwith his countenance and manners; he was atthat moment holding his Testament in his hand:the lady having looked at the book, and questionedJacques, learned from him his ardent desire forreading and instruction. "Would you like," shekindly said, "to accompany my sons every day tothe college ? I will obtain permission from theprofessors for you to be present at their lessons,and you will then be always learning some-thing."The child, overpowered with emotion, and notknowing how to prove the excess of his gratitudeto the kind lady, threw himself on his knees tothank her.Some minutes after, he was admitted into theinterior of the college; the lady had recommendedhim to the same master to whom he had deliveredthe letter on his arrival at Paris. This time hewas much better received. The master told himthat he should have a little room to himself rightat the top of the building, and that he might, ifhe pleased, while attending on the sons of the kindlady, share the studies of the other pupils, andthat his advancement would thenceforth dependupon himself.From that time the life of little Jacques becamean ardent struggle. The large loaf which he re-4j
80 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.ceived every week from Melun secured him fromwant; to this home-made bread he was able to adda little fruit and some vegetables, and to buy him-self a better coat with the modest wages regularlypaid him by the kind lady; and, what was to himstill 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 fateof his fellow-pupils; he only thought of surpassingthem all in his studies.It was an admirable example that was set bythis poor child of the people, waiting upon othersin play-hours, while in those devoted to lessons heshowed himself the most assiduous of them all.He even encroached upon his hours of sleep tostudy, and not having any lamp, he read and wroteby the light of a few live embers. He soon maderapid progress in the study of the Latin language,but his ambition went still further; he thirstedfor a knowledge of the beautiful Greek tongue, withwhich only a few of the literati of France were atthat time perfectly familiar. The most celebratedworks of Greek literature had only been printed inParis about twenty years before; these books werevery dear, and little Jacques was very poor; but thestrength of his will supplied the want, of every-thing. By dint of hard labour he obtained a
:Ith!J~ ~ 1 :i i' i I I "' '- i ,! < ; Jillk- 11/11I, Yll i,~1 .,[2 ......P'[he kingr and princess, astonished at his teariiincg, loaded him wi~h praise, and" declared that they would take undertheir protection the young Jacques. "-Page. 61.
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 81mastery over Greek. He followed first the course oflectures of Bonchamps, called Evagrius, the mostlearned professor of his time; and shortly after,Francis I. having instituted a Greek chair, theprofessors of which, two learned and erudite men,named Jacques Thusan and Pierre Danes, werecommissioned, under the style and title of RoyalLecturers, to teach, one the poetry and the otherthe philosophy of antiquity, Jacques was to beseen assiduously attending their lectures, ques-tioned by them, and astonishing and dazzlingthem 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 didhow to comment upon Plato, Demosthenes, andPlutarch.A day came, at length, when they examined himin presence of Francis I. and of his sister Margaretof Navarre, who also herself understood Greek.The king and the princess, astonished at his learn-ing, loaded him with praises, and declared thatthey would take under their protection the youngJacques Amyot, one of the future glories of France.On the morrow succeeding this happy day, theboats of Melun deposited at Paris a poor man andhis wife, attired in the simple garb of the peasantsof that time. They were the mother and father ofJacques Amyot.4
82 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD."Ah, my dear son," said his mother as shestrained him to her breast," I bring you yourfather, who has forgiven you and who is veryproud of you!"Jacques Amyot, the hero of the above little tale,was born at Melun, October 3rd, 1513, of -humbleparents, his father being a little shopkeeper of thetown. The young Amyot, evincing a distaste forhis father's business, quitted his home at an earlyperiod, and went to Paris, travelling thither onfoot. Sinking with exhaustion and fatigue by theway, he was conducted to the hospital of Orleans.As soon as he was recovered, he left the hospitalwith twelve sous (6d.), which were given to him,and which constituted all his resources until hisarrival at Paris. His mother, who was tenderlyattached to him, contributed to his support bysending him every week an enormous loaf ofbread from Melun. He installed himself in thefirst instance at the gate of one of the colleges,where he ran of errands and executed commissionsfor the pupils and professors. Remarked for hisintelligence and pleasing manners, he was admittedinto the interior of the college, of which he soonbecame one of the most promising pupils; foralthough obliged by reason of his straitened cir-cumstances to act in the capacity of servant to theother pupils, that did not prevent him from prose-
THE LITTLE TRUANT. 83cutting his studies with the utmost ardour, Atnight; for want of oil and candle, he is said to havestudied 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 ofArts. He then repaired to Bourges, to study civillaw there. There also, Jacques Collin, Reader tothe King, entrusted to him the education of hisnephews, and obtained for him a Professor's chairfor both Greek and Latin. It was during the twelveyears that he occupied this chair that he made thetranslation of the Greek romance of Theagenes andCharicles, and commenced that of Plutarch's Lives.He dedicated the first of the Lives to Francis I.,who ordered him to continue this translation, andgranted him, as a reward, the abbey of Bellezane.Being desirous of obtaining possession of themanuscripts of Plutarch which were in existencein Italy, he repaired thither with the French am-bassador. He was shortly after commissioned bythe latter and by Cardinal Tournon to be thebearer of a letter to King Henry II. at the councilat that time assembled at Trent. He acquittedhimself so skilfully of his mission that, on his re-turn to Paris, he was appointed preceptor to thetwo sons of Henry II. While conducting theireducation he finished his translation of Plutarch's4.
84 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.Lives, which he dedicated to Henry II., and beganthat of the moral works of the same writer, whichhe did not finish till the reign of Charles IX., hispupil, to whom he paid a similar compliment.Immediately on his succession to the throne, KingCharles IX. appointed him his grand almoner.Some time after, the chair of Auxerre fallingvacant, the king bestowed it upon his Master, ashe always called Amyot.When his other pupil, Henry III., succeeded tothe throne, he confirmed him in all his offices, andappointed him commander of the order of the HolyGhost, which he had just created. Amyot passedhis last years in his diocese, solely occupied withstudy and the exercise of his duties. He died atAuxerre, February 6th, 1593, in his eightiethyear. He left a fortune of 200,000 crowns. Hebequeathed to the hospital of Orleans, where hehad been sheltered in his childhood, a legacy of1200 crowns. His translation of Plutarch isesteemed the best in the French language.
85Amiable Heroism of Louis XVII.THE immediate successor of the unfortunate LouisXVI. bore only for a short time the title of Kingof 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 fewmonths, and then died, being only ten years and afew months old. This royal youth was the secondson of Louis XVI. This unfortunate monarchwas tried by the Convention, which in 1792 de-creed the abolition of royalty in France, andaccused the monarch of conspiracy and hightreason against the liberties of the people. He wascondemned to death by a majority of eleven votes,and suffered death by the guillotine on the 21st ofJanuary, 1793. Nine months after, Marie Antoi-nette, the beloved mother of our hero, ascendedthe revolutionary scaffold, and he was left anorphan in the world. He was at his birth knownas the Duke of Normandy, but afterwards, on thedeath of his elder brother, became Dauphin. Ac-knowledged King of France by the Royalists, and4
r86 HEROISM OF BOYHOOD.also by foreign powers, the provinces of La Bre-tagne, Toulon, and La Vendee took up arms in hisname. But they were unsuccessful, and it isgenerally suspected that he died of poison in hisprison, which event occurred on the 8th of June,1795.Some might suppose that the life of such a childcould present few circumstances worthy of remem-brance, but if we may credit the memoirs whichappeared after the restoration of the monarchy,since again overthrown, there never was a princeof the house of Capet who gave at so early an ageso bright a promise of doing justice to the ancientmotto-" Bonte et Valeur."From the anecdotes that are related of him Ishall select a few of the more striking.Every morning the Dauphin, while yet a child,was in the habit of ranging through the gardensof the Palace of Versailles, and collecting thefairest flowers to deposit in his mother's boudoirbefore she arose. When bad weather preventedhim on any occasion from gathering his usualmorning bouquet, he would say, mournfully-"Alas! how sorry am I! Nothing have I doneto-day for my dear mamma, who has done so muchfor me. But I will make her a drawing of theflowers I would have gathered for her on myslate, to show her that I love her."