Citation
Stories for summer days and winter nights

Material Information

Title:
Stories for summer days and winter nights
Added title page title:
In and out of school
Added title page title:
Foundling of the wreck
Added title page title:
Prophet and the lost city
Creator:
Whimper, E ( Engraver )
Barrett, Richard ( Printer )
Guizot ( Elisabeth Charlotte Pauline ), 1773-1827
Groombridge and Sons ( Publisher )
Place of Publication:
London
Publisher:
Groombridge and Sons
Manufacturer:
Richard Barrett
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
1 v. (various pagings) : ill. ; 14 cm.

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Girls -- Education -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Schools -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Teachers -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Artists -- Juvenile fiction -- France ( lcsh )
Art schools -- Juvenile fiction -- France ( lcsh )
Arabs -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
History -- Juvenile fiction -- Russia -- Peter I, 1689-1725 ( lcsh )
Juvenile fiction -- Nineveh (Extinct city) ( lcsh )
Biographical fiction -- 1854 ( rbgenr )
Printed boards (Binding) -- 1854 ( rbbin )
School stories -- 1854 ( local )
Bldn -- 1854
Genre:
Biographical fiction ( rbgenr )
Printed boards ( rbbin )
School stories ( local )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
England -- London
Target Audience:
juvenile ( marctarget )

Notes

General Note:
Vol. 4 of a series which comprises 32 numbers in all, each volume, 8 v. in all, containing four stories. The stories were also published separately.
General Note:
Date of publication based on inscription; the second, third and fourth stories have separate t.p.
General Note:
Illustrations signed: E. Whymper, Sc.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
This item is presumed to be in the public domain. The University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries respect the intellectual property rights of others and do not claim any copyright interest in this item. Users of this work have responsibility for determining copyright status prior to reusing, publishing or reproducing this item for purposes other than what is allowed by fair use or other copyright exemptions. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions may require permission of the copyright holder. The Smathers Libraries would like to learn more about this item and invite individuals or organizations to contact The Department of Special and Area Studies Collections (special@uflib.ufl.edu) with any additional information they can provide.
Resource Identifier:
AAA3077 ( LTQF )
ALH8421 ( NOTIS )
46448890 ( OCLC )
026970241 ( AlephBibNum )

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Second Series.

STORIES

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IN SCHOOL AND OUT OF SCHOOL.

cHAPTER L

IN SCHOOL.

THE young people of the little village of Stapleford
were looking forward with anxious expectation to
the first of September. It was the day fixed for the
examination of the girls in the village school, after
which the prizes were to be delivered which had
been promised by Mr. Brookbanks, the rector, and
the Miss Shirleys, who lived up at the Hall, and who
took a great interest in the school. There was to
be a prize given to the best. reader, the best writer,
the neatest worker, and to; Mer who had always
atterided school during the past year most regularly
and punctually. The mistress of the school, Mrs.
Presgrove, of course kept a register of the attend-
ance of all the scholars each day, so that matter
could be easily settled ; but the other prizes were
to be given in accordance with the manner in
which they acquitted themselves on the day of
examination. Almost every day after school was
over, and Mrs. Presgrove had dismissed the classes,
did the girls saunter home talking about: the prizes,
and the nearer they got to the examination day, the
more anxious they all felt about it. Younger sisters
who had no hope of a prize, were anxious about their
elder sisters, and those who thought they had a
chance calculated that chance over again and again
in their own minds, and did their best to find out





6 IN SCHOOL

what were the opinions of the rest regarding it. As
the summer wore away however, it almost seemed
as if some of the doubt and suspense was set aside
by the general feeling with respect to a girl named
Phoebe Gibbons. It was impossible not to see that
she had a better chance than any ones indeed there
were some even who thought that she would carry
off all the prizes that were to be given, so wonder-
fully did she exert herselfygmd so very evident was
her improvement. ‘The Migs Shirleys could not but
take great notice of Phoebe in their visits to the
school, and Mrs. Presgrove, however she might pride
herself on not having favourites, could not help
showing how very proud she was of Phoebe. She
did not always appeal to Phoebe every time she
wanted an answer to a question, because she wished
to maké others in the class give her an answer ; but
after two or three wrong replies were given, or when
she was tired of appealing to the rest, her eye would
turn to Phoebe with as much confidence in getting
the right answer, as if she were to read it from a
book. Each morning, too, when the time came for
unlocking and setting open the school-room door,
Mrs.:Presgrove would put her head out, and be sure
to see Phoebe within a few yards of the gate, with
her bag on her arm, and perhaps a book in her hand,
out of which she was conning a lesson. Her twin
sister Ruth was often with her, but occasionally
Ruth would not make her appearance for quite ten
minutes after, which was not to be wondered at, for
Ruth was decidedly slow in all her movements.
There might have been some among her school-
fellows a little envious of Phoebe’s great success in
all that she attempted, but she was too good-natured
a girl herself for any very unkind feelings to be
harboured against her; and if some of the girls of
her own age were occasionally discouraged by the
superiority she showed, they could not help feeling



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 7

at the same time proud of having such a clever girl
in the school, and found the convenience of having
some one always at hand who could help them over
their difficulties, or explain what puzzled them when
they could not apply to Mrs. Presgrove. Mrs. Pres-
grove herself used to call Phoebe her second right
hand—and so she really was ;‘always so bustling
and active in school—keeping up the spirit of all
the classes to which she belonged, and always ready
to teach a class of little ones when Mrs. Presgrove
was particularly busy cutting out work, or finishing-
off some that was to be sent home.

Phoebe and Ruth Gibbons were the daughters of
very respectable parents in Stapleford. Their cot-
tage was the very last in the village before you came
to where the palings of Shirley Park began, and the
garden which lay behind it on the hill-side was also
theirs. Their father was a nursery-man and florist,
so that at all times and seasons there were square
patches of some bright-coloured flowers or other to
be seen on that sloping garden, and unusually choice
creepers and climbers about the windows and porch
of the cottage. The boundary of the garden at the
top was part of the pine and fir plantation which
skirted Shirley Park, and by shutting out the cold
@vinds from the flower-beds, was considered to be one
of the causes for Andrew Gibbons’ succeeding so well
with the more delicate kinds of herbaceous plants,
though his industry and good knowledge of gardening
had of course much to do with it. To look at the
Gibbons’ cottage, one would almost fancy them to be
better off than any of their neighbours, so neat and
comfortable was the air of the place, but the rent of
their house and garden was high, and the profit from
the sale of plants and the produce of their fruit-trees
was uncertain ; besides which, Andrew Gibbons had
built his greenhouse and forcing-frames with bor-
rowed money, for which he had to pay high interest



8 IN SCHOOL

until he could manage to pay it off by instalments.
Still, as he said, he could see his way very clearly,
and as soon as his girls were able to maintain them-
selves, all would go well. In the meantime, however,
he was ready to make every sacrifice for the sake of
their getting a good education. Phoebe might, a
year before the time we write of, have had a place
at a neighbouring farm-house, but her father and
mother could not bear the thought of taking her
‘away from her book,’ especially as she was inaking
such very satisfactory progress, and they willingly
made the necessary sacrifice for the schooling and
maintenance of both the girls for yet another year,
seeing, as they said, the wonderful start Phoebe was ©
making, and considering that Ruth was somewhat
backward. SBoth father and mother were thrifty
and industrious, and the former, who was a Scotch- |
man by birth, set a high value on education. Re-
ports of Phoebe’s reputation at school were most
gratifying to them, and they, too, looked forward
with no little interest to the display which would be
made of her ‘ forwardness’ on the important exami-
nation day.

The summer wore on, and nothing interfered with
the general expectation of Phcebe’s success. Thex
most that any of her companions could hope for wasya
that one out of the four prizes to be given might fall”
to their lot ; and their mistress, Mrs. Presgrove, had
difficulty in keeping up their zeal in those matters
where after all, the proficiency of the whole school
was to her of more importance than the excellence of
one pupil. She said a great deal to the girls about
none of their efforts being lost, even if they did not
secure a prize; and she reminded the more timid
ones, who were sure of not being seen to advantage
in anything like a public examination, that the
feeling that we have done our best, is the next best ©
thing to the satisfaction of gaining a prize. Among






AND OUT OF SCHOOL. vd

these timid ones was Ruth Gibbons, Phoebe’s sister.
The two sisters were so different in this respect, that
they could hardly understand each other’s feelings.

‘How could you be so stupid, Ruth,’ said Phcebe
one day, as they returned home, after having been
questioned by one of the Miss Shirleys about the
different countries of Europe, and asked the names
of their capitals ; ‘how couid you say that Portugal
was the capital of Spain? I am sure you knew
better.’

‘Oh, yes, I really did know better; but I was so
flurried by Miss Louisa’s taking the class instead of
Mrs. Presgrove. It made me so frightened that I
did not know what I was saying.’

‘How strange of you, Ruth. Why, that was the
very thing that made me so particular in giving
right answers. I should have been so ashamed of
making a blunder before Miss Louisa.’ |

‘Ah, you! Phoebe—but you’re so different from
me,’ said Ruth in a humble tone of voice. |

Among other things which were preparing for
the examination day, was the recitation of some
hittle poems and hymns, and Miss Louisa Shirley
had taken the greatest pains with the girls to get
these nicely learned and well delivered. She was
very particular about the accent and tone of the
girls as they repeated poetry, and she had taken
care that they learned nothing which they did not
understand. Nothing was to be jabbered or gabbied,
and to prevent this, she taught the girls to repeat
the verses after her without seeing them in a book,
so that they got right sound and right sense from
the very first. Now, even in this Phoebe Gibbons
showed a greater quickness than all the other girls
in Miss Louisa’s class. She liked poetry, and she
recited it in a pleasant tone, and with a correct
accent, as if she fe/t it all. It was really a pleasure
to hear her repeat, amongst other things the beau-
tiful lines beginning “‘ Prayer is the soul’s sincere



10 IN SCHOOL

desire ;’? and she could go though all the verses of
the poem without her memory once failing her.

After taking so much pains with the girls as Miss
Louisa Shirley had done, it was no wonder that she
was proud of her success with Phoebe. Her sister
Gertrude was in delicate health, and could not often
get down to see what was going on at the school-
house, so that it was quite natural, that Phoebe
should be asked to come up to the Hall one evening,
to recite to her her favourite poems, and that some
strange ladies, who were visiting there, should be in
the room when she went through them. Phebe
was on this occasion a little nervous, and blushed
very red when she saw the circle of listeners around
Miss Gertrude’s sofa ; but she acquitted herself very
well, and gained great credit to her teacher, Miss
Louisa. She recited not only Montgomery’s “ Prayer,”
but his lines on the “ Grave ;” and she herself offered
to repeat “ The Better Land,” if Miss Louisa liked ;
and really astonished them all, by the very expressive
way in which she marked the difference between the
questions of the child and the answers of the mother
in this little poem.

As Phoebe went home that evening, she met Mr.
Brookbanks, the clergyman, as she crossed the park
to her father’s cottage ; and he found out, from her
answers to his inquiries, what had been the object
of her visit up at the Hall. Hé made no remark to
Phoebe, but that evening he sat down by the side
of Miss Louisa as she was making tea in the drawing-
room, and drawing his chair close up to hers, he
said—‘So you have had Phoebe Gibbons here this
evening showing off, have you? Take care that you
do not make her vain.’

‘Oh, Mr. Brookbanks, do you think I would do
that ? You don’t know how modest she is, and well
behaved. I am sure’

‘Well, it may be so, my good young lady,’ said
Mr. Brookbanks, ‘but at all events take care.’





i2 IN SCHOOL

amount of proficiency shown as she could wish—
then the books were all put away, the slates collected
together, and the work locked up. Two or three of
the elder girls stayed behind, after the rest were dis-
missed, to help Mrs. Presgrove in arranging the
school-room. The floor was carefully swept, tables
and benches dusted again and again, and the black
board cleared of every particle of chalk. Phoebe
and Ruth Gibbons were among the girls chosen for
these offices. In the midst of all the bustle, they were
observed to cast wistful looks every now and then up
the lane towards home ; and this was explained soon
by their little brother David making his appearance
with an immense clothes-basket full of flowers,
almost more than he could carry, which were sent
by his father for the decoration of the school-room.
Almost every dahlia that his garden contained had
been cut, as well as lots of asters, and phlox, and
scarlet geraniums. Mrs. Presgrove was delighted
at the sight of the flowers, and a number of ambi-
tious schemes came into her head as to how they
should he disposed of. It was just what she wanted
to conceal some ink-stains on the tables and desks—
and the places where the plaster had fallen off the
walls—what a charming thing if these could be
covered! A number of plans were tried, when all
at once a happy thought struck her. The dahlia
flowers could not only be arranged against the wall,
but they might have a motto with them, like the
Victoria and Albert, which had been so much
admired at the flower-show at N the autumn
before. Then came the difficulty about what should
be the inscription ; and after rejecting. many good
proverbs as too long, and not sufficiently appropriate,
she decided upon requesting the assistance of Mr.
Brookbanks. A deputation was going up to the
Rectory, to fetch some cups and saucers, and Mr.
Brookbanks should be asked to furnish them a motto





CHAPTER II.
EXCELSIOR !

THE examination-day came at last ; and if there were
any who dreaded what it might bring, they certainly
kept their fears to themselves, for it seemed as if
there had never been any event in the village of
Stapleford which made a day so much of the nature
of a festival. This was principally owing to the
kind plans of Mr. Brookbanks and the family at the
Hall. It was determined that it should be made
quite a holiday in the village, and that all the parents
of the children should be invited to take tea in the
school-room, after the business of the day was over.
Mrs. Yates, the housekeeper at the Hall, was
deputed to see after the cake, and bread and butter
for the large party that was expected to assemble ;
and Mrs. Brookbanks, the rector’s lady, undertook
to superintend the arrangements for the tea and
coffee ; and everything was to be so contrived, that.
when the examination was over, and the prizes
given, only a short interval of time would be requi-
site, in order to convert the school-room into a tea-
room, in which accommodation would be found for

Mrs. Presgrove, perhaps, from among those who
were to be present, was the least able to look upon
it as. a day of pleasure. She could not help feeling
nervous as to how her girls would acquit themselves.
She assembled school that morning at the usual
hour, but nothing was attempted beyond getting
things in order for the afternoon. Some of the
classes were heard in a hurried sort of way, just to
make herself sure of one or two points, where she
dreaded that there might not be as creditable an



AND OUT OF SCHOON. 1

—a single word, in fact, if one could only be found
which would mean a great deal. Back with the
cups and saucers, after being kept by Mr. Brookbanks
a wonderfully short time, as the girls thought, came
a piece of paper for Mrs. Presgrove, on which was
written the word “ Excelsior,” and a message to say,
that if she did not know what it meant, he would
take occasion to explain it after the examination
was over.

After a private look into her dictionary, where it
was not to be found, Mrs. Presgrove frankly con-
fessed to the girls that she did not know the meaning
of the word ; but it was just the right length for the
scar upon the wall, and that it meant a great deal,
she had no manner of doubt.

They set to work ; and with the help of a strip of
white calico first stretched across the wall at the
head of the room, they contrived to write in flowers
the mysterious word. Nothing could look better
than it did—each letter being formed of a separate
colour, and there being among the dahlias quite as
many as nine distinct and brilliant hues, from the
red, which was almost as deep as black, to the purest
white.

This inscription, together with the large nosegays
placed about the room—bough-pots, as Mrs. Presgrove
called them—seemed to convert their well-known
school-room into something as like fairy-land as any
of those girls were able to picture to themselves ; and
if it had not been for the table at the end of the room
covered with a green cloth, behind which Mr. Brook-
banks was to sit when he examined them, and before
which the different. classes were to stand—a part of
the arrangements which made their hearts beat when-
ever they looked that way—they would never have
been tired of gazing around them, and admiring the
results of their labour. But three o’clock struck,
when all was ready, and the girls were sent home to



14 IN SCHOOL

dress themselves in their Sunday frocks, in time for
the assembling of all the company at four.

It was really a pretty sight to see the turning out
of the whole of the village children, dressed in their
best, and marshalling in order to walk to the school-
house, while such of the parents as were disengaged
at that early hour, were also wending their way to it
in their neatest and smartest attire. A much larger
group of ladies than was expected issued, too, from
the gates of Shirley Park, and Mr. and Mrs. Brook-
banks had friends with them from the Rectory.

It had struck four before the carriage from
the Hall drove up with Miss Gertrude, who was
not able to walk down; and then the proceedings
began. Mr. Brookbanks was at his post at the head
of the room, with the ladies on each side of him.
The children were in the middle on their benches,
and the mothers were around Mrs. Presgrove’s chair
at the other end. People had hardly time to look
around them at the pretty decorations, and to wonder
at the curious flower-word, before Mr. Brookbanks
summoned Mrs. Presgrove to tell him in what she
wished her pupils to be examined. A paper was
given to him, and then the different classes were
called up in the order arranged beforehand, while
Mr. Brookbanks took notes, as he went on, of the
manner in which each member of the class acquitted
herself. :

Better, of course, than any one, Mrs. Presgrove
knew, directly a question was asked, whether it
would get an answer. She would wince, and flush
quite red, when one came that was decidedly too
difficult, or so differently put from the way she was
accustomed to ask it, that she feared it would not be
understood. She was allowed, on several occasions,
to explain, which was only fair; and at other times
she at once said, that ‘that was one of the branches
of the subject to which she had not yet turned their



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 15

attention.’ No one thought the worse of Mrs. Pres-

ove asa teacher for frankly acknowledging this ;

ut on the contrary, only wondered how she had
been able to teach them so much. The answers of
some of the girls quite surprised even the very well
educated listeners. They were quite sure, indeed,
that at their age they had not known so much. In
arithmetic, especially, when it came to the black
board being brought forward, and the chalk sums
set on the different rules, every one was astonished
at the quickness of even the little ones, and Mrs.
Presgrove got great credit. Mr. Brookbanks asked,
too, some very puzzling questions, ‘to be done in
the head,’ and got wonderfully correct and ready
answers.

‘How remarkably well that nice-looking tall girl,
whom they call Phoebe, answers !’ said one of the
ladies.

‘Oh yes,’ said Miss Gertrude, in a whisper, ‘that
is our favourite, Phoebe Gibbons. But you will hear
her recite poetry, presently, quite beautifully. She
is really a very clever girl.’

The examination of copy-books came next, and
then the work. Specimens of all sorts of stitches—
sewing, hemming, stitching, herring-boning, and
gathering — were neatly arranged on sheets of
coloured paper; and even make-believe darns and
button-holes were exhibited; and as each of
these specimen papers was filled with one girl’s
work, and marked with a number which only
Mrs. Presgrove knew, the prize could be awarded
quite fairly before it was known who would claim it.
With the writing it was the same. There were no.
names in the copy-books, but the one which all
should determine to be the best was to be set aside
for the prize.

The reading and recitations then followed ; and,
as every one had expected, Phoebe Gibbons was, be-



16 IN SCHOOT,

yond any doubt, the one who did best. After her
clear, distinct, and well-toned reading of the Sermon
on the Mount had been heard, together with her
correct answers to Mr. Brookbanks’ rather difficult
questions, there was no one who felt a moment’s hesi-
tation about her deserving the prize which Miss
Louisa Shirley had offered. The neatly bound gilt-
edged bible was handed to her by Mr. Brookbanks,
with a few kind and earnest words, which sank deep
into Phcebe’s heart. He said she had shown that
she was well acquainted with the letter of its con-
tents, and he hoped that her future life would show
that she also understood its spirit.

A neat little work-box was then handed by Mrs.
Brookbanks to the girl who claimed the best specimens
of needle-work,—Mary Groves. There was then a
long discussion among the ladies over the copy-books
—two of them showing such decided superiority over
the rest, that the matter could not be settled, until
Mr. Brookbanks, who had offered this prize, de-
cided. that he would give two books, one to each
of their owners. It turned out that these were
Phoebe and Ruth Gibbons; and every one was glad
that the good and quiet Ruth was to have a prize as
well as her sister. Last of all came the prize for
punctual attendance at school. Mrs. Presgrove pro-
duced her book, which kept a report of the daily
attendance of the girls. The numbers were cast up,
and there was quite a murmur of applause in the
room when Phcebe Gibbons was aiso declared to have
gained this prize. Mr. Brookbanks pointed out that
it was not to be wondered at that punctual atten-
dance at school should have secured progress and
excellence in other matters. It was the cause, in a
great measure, and the other was the effect. He
hoped that it would encourage the others to be steady
in.their attendance at school in future ; and he re-
marked to Phoebe, as she advanced to receive it, that



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 17

no doubt she had to thank the early good habits
implanted by her industrious father and mother for
this additional prize. It was observed how, at these
words, Phoebe blushed a deep crimson, and looked
across at Ruth, who sat on an opposite bench. She
seemed as if she wanted to say something ; but no
sound came from her lips.

‘Poor Phoebe seems quite agitated with her great
success, said Miss Louisa, and she kindly told her
that she might go to her seat again.

Everybody agreed with Mr. Brookbanks now in
regretting that there were not more prizes to be
bestowed. No one doubted that they had been most
fairly awarded ; although one girl had alone carried
off three of them—but there were many of the other
girls who had acquitted themselves so very well, that
the mere mention of their names, with words of ap-
proval and praise, was scarcely enough to satisfy the
judges. Mr. Brookbanks, however, pointed out, in
his concluding little speech, that these ha@Mafter all
the reward of knowing that they had done th€ir best,
and of being able to perceive themselves how much
progress had been made since that day last year.
‘And now,’ said he, pulling out his watch, ‘who will
get the prize for the best cup of tea in half an hour’s
time ; for I shall certainly be back to drink it.’

The ladies then withdrew—all but Miss Louisa
and Mrs. Brookbanks, who stayed to make tea, and
take it, too, with the large party of parents and
children that was to re-assemble.

In the little garden in front of the school-house
was seen a crowd of girls round Phoebe Gibbons, to
look at her beautiful prizes; and there were many
of the elder girls who were not sorry to remember
that they were not likely to have such a formidable
rival at the next year’s examination ; for Phoebe was
most certainly to leave school in the spring ; so that
some of their exertions were sure to be crowned with



18 IN SCHOOL

success, and there was no doubt but that Mr. Brook-
banks and the Miss Shirleys would give as many
prizes next year. This was all said amongst them-
selves, and it prevented a too deep feeling of morti-
fication at their present ill-success, and very luckily,
too, prevented any feeling of jealousy towards Phoebe.
In less time than had been thought possible, and
before the appointed half-hour had expired, the long
tables down each side of the room were set out and
spread ; the white cloths and numerous tea-trays,
and piles of bread and butter and cake, giving good
promise of plenty for the very large party of old and
young. All were seated—tea-cups were rattling, and
voices buzzing in happy talk—when Mr. Brookbanks
returned, bringing a nice little book for the extra
prize to Ruth. He took his place at the head of one
of the tables, and it was generally expected that,
after tea, he would make something of a speech or
address, which many of the fathers and mothers who
had never heard him, except in the pulpit, were very
anxious to hear.

When the last cup of tea was poured out and
drunk, and the plates began at last to stand still,
Mr. Brookbanks arose, and began his address by
saying how much pleasure it gave him to meet so
large a number of his parishioners on so pleasant an
occasion—an occasion which had shown them what
good progress had been made during the last year in
the knowledge of those whose duty it was to learn.
The young people had proved that they were doing
their best to avail themselves of the means of in-
struction and improvement which were offered to
them. They had gained knowledge which, for the
whole of their lives afterwards, might be considered
a valuable possession, which neither time nor change
could take from them, and which might, if they
liked, go a great way towards helping them forward
in the world. But he must remind them that know-



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 19

ledge was not all that was to be desired. He had
been asked to furnish a motto for the decoration of
their room, and he had chosen a word which, though
perfiaps unknown to most | ala was yet full of
meaning—and he turned and pointed:to the pretty
dahlia-word across the wall—



Should he tell them why he fixed on that word ?
He happened to have been reading, that very
morning, a little poem, which told a sort of allegory
or parable about a pilgrim who bore this word on a
banner, and who, climbing onwards and” upwards
among the high mountains called the Alps, had died
at last far up among the snow which covers their
summits, ‘still crying ‘ Excelsior,’ and when dead,
still grasping the banner on which was written—
Excelsior !

Now the word Excelsior meant higher, or more
high, and no better motto could any one adopt. And
in saying this he did not mean that the best thing
to do was to try to get higher in position or rank,
or worldly advantages, so much as higher in character.
This, Mr. Brookbanks said, was the very best thing
that a human being could aspire after—that is, to
raise himself in character, to strive after perfection.
The pilgrim in the poem had rejected all the offers
of comfort and luxury made to induce him to stay
in the valley ; and through storms, and snow and ice
had journeyed on still higher and higher, and after
reaching the highest point of the mountain, he fell,



20 _ IN SCHOOL

overcome with cold and fatigue, and dying—may
we not imagine that he ascended even still higher
into ——? and Mr Brookbanks paused, and, looking
round at some of the young people near him, as if
waiting to have his sentence finished by them,
several voices said, in a low tone, the word, ‘ heaven.’
‘Yes, heaven,’ said Mr. Brookbanks. ‘ Striving,
when here on earth, to get higher and higher still in
character, is the same as striving to reach heaven—
the highest object that any can attain. And how
can we get higher, but by leaving behind us all that
is. low—low feelings, low habits of mind, and low
pursuits. Let us set these aside. Let us seek after
everything that is excellent and of good report ; and
then shall we certainly rise higher and higher. And
let us do this in all humility of spirit, taking for our
example Him who was Most High, and yet humbled
himself as a little child, and who told his disciples
that unless they became as little children, they could
not enter the kingdom of heaven ; and who when they
disputed as to which of them should be highest in
rank, said ‘He that humbleth himself shall be exalted.’
And this was the end of Mr. Brookbanks’ speech,
which was most attentively and eagerly listened to,
by both young and old. They liked it because they
understood it ; and many silent resolves were made
at its conclusion by the hearers, that they would try
what they could do to raise themselves higher, still
higher in character. They looked with reverence
now at that once unmeaning word, Excelsior ; for
they understood its meaning. No one would ever
forget it ; and they only wished that its letters would
flash into their eyes at times when they were tempted
to do something low or base. What a pity that
those flowers would not last ! :
In rising to go away, many crowded to the end of
the room to look still closer at the beautiful dahlias ;
and it was then that Andrew Gibbons, Pheebe’s



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 21

father, promised that he would supply flowers next
year on the examination day, to write that word
again. ‘And a very well-chosen word it was,’ said
he, as he walked home with his wife and daughters
‘A word to my mind, with good sense as well as
good sound. I’m thinking, wife,’ continued he, after
being silent for some time, ‘that to help me to re-
member those excellent remarks of our good minister,
(ll name my new pelargonium after it. Pelar-
gonium Excelsior it shall be called, and I'll never
look at it without saying to myself ‘higher, more
high—higher in character.’



CHAPTER ITT. .
OUT OF SCHOOL.

THE flower-word had not faded on the wall of the
school-room, before the girls of the Stapleford school
were all busy at work again, after two or three days’
holiday ; and distant as the next examination now
was, there were still among them some who had
begun to hold it steadily in view, and were deter-
mined that they would never so far forget it as to
relax in any of their efforts through the long year
which lay before them. As we have before observed,
it was a comfort to them to know, that Phcebe
Gibbons could not run away with all the prizes next
year ; for it was quite decided that she and Ruth
were to leave school in the spring. Somehow or
other, it had got reported in the village, through
Mrs. Yates, the housekeeper at the Hall, that the
Miss Shirleys had thoughts of engaging Phcebe in
the place of Allen, their own maid, who was going to
be married. Miss Gertrude Shirley was to go abroad
for her health early in the spring, and was to travel
in Germany and Italy for more than a year, so that
it was enough to make Phcebe’s heart beat with
delight, when she thought that she might perhaps
be taken with them on this journey. It was, it is
true, only a report, but still there was sufficient like-
lihood in it to make her full of hope. Something
which Miss Louisa had said to Phoebe one day, as
she was shewing a class all the countries of Europe
on the map, seemed to confirm what Mrs. Yates had
said. She had asked Phoebe if she would not like to
see foreign countries ; and she turned to her in par-
ticular, when she traced on the map the route of the
journey which she and her sister were going to take



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 23

in the spring with their father—across the country
called Belgium, and up the river Rhine till they came
to Switzerland, and then over the Alps into Italy.
There had also been made, privately, a sort of promise
to Phoebe’s mother, on the part of Allen, Miss Shirley’s
maid, that in case her daughter should be her suc-
cessor, she would teach her how to dress the young
ladies’ hair, and give her some notions of mantua-
making. Far more did the thought of this situation
fill Phcebe’s mind than even the prizes of the former
year, and she exerted herself more than ever toxwin
approbation at school. It seemed, indeed, to the
whole family as if Phoebe’s ‘ getting on’ was a matter
to which everything else was to give way. Her
mother would at times keep Ruth at home to help
her on days when she was particularly busy with
her clear-starching and ironing, for she washed the
muslins and fine things for the Hall; but she never
thought of encroaching on Phceebe’s time. On market
mornings, if Andrew Gibbons wanted his breakfast
unusually early, or any assistance in tying up his
plants, it would be sure to be Ruth or little David
who was called up an hour sooner, rather than
Phoebe ; and at all times Phoebe had only to say
something about ‘my lessons,’ or ‘getting ready for
my class,’ in order to be excused from an errand or
little household job.

Things were in this state as the winter drew toa
close ; but it was at the beginning of February that
an event occurred which brought about many
changes, and led to some important results in the
Gibbons’ cottage. This event was a very serious
accident which befel Miss Louisa Shirley, and which,
owing to the kindness which she always showed
every one, gave much concern to all the inhabitants
of Stapleford. It seemed afterwards, as if every
body remembered the events of the day on which it
occurred better than any day in the year; perhaps



24 IN SCHOOL

because it was so often talked about among them.
Just at that time, Andrew Gibbons had some very
fine hyacinths in bloom in his greenhouse, and a
particularly brilliant Van Thol tulip. There had
been some talk about the ladies from the Hall coming
down to see them, which was perhaps the reason
that he told Phoebe that morning to be sure and put
some ashes on the steps of the greenhouse, as the
sharp frost in the night had frozen again some melted
snow, so as to make them slippery. Phoebe was up
late'that morning, and knew quite well afterwards
how it was her bustle to get off to school which
made her forget her father’s request about the ashes.
She and all the school children remembered well,
how that morning Miss Louisa Shirley came into the
school for a few minutes, to speak to Mrs. Presgrove
about some work. She had got off her horse at the
door, and was in her riding-habit, in which dress
some of the children had never before seen her.
They remembered not only her looks, but the few
pleasant words she said in passing down between
the rows of forms; and ah! how well did Phoebe
recollect her kind greeting, and her question as to
whether, if she called at her father’s cottage, she
should find him at home. For many a year, every
word and look, and every small circumstance which
made up the importance of that day, remained deeply
impressed on Phcebe’s mind. She remembered
glancing up from the page she was reading, to look
through the window at Miss Louisa assisted on to
her horse by the groom. She remembered seeing
her canter off in the direction of her father’s cot-
tage, her veil and feather streaming back from her
hat, and the white steam puffing out from the nos-
trils of the horses in the cold frosty air. It did not
seem more than half-an-hour from that time, when
Miss Louisa seemed so well and gay, that the groom
went galloping past the schoul-house to Mr. Ham-



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 25

mond, the surgeon’s, gate, and little David, her
brother, came running into the school-room to.desire
her and Ruth to go home directly, to help her mother
with Miss Louisa, who had fallen down and hurt
herself. No one knew—no human being knew the
pang that shot through Phcoebe’s heart when she got
home and saw Miss Louisa lying in dreadful pain
upon a mattress, in her mother’s kitchen, and was
told that she had slipped down the greenhouse steps,
and it was feared had broken her leg. Between the
times when the pain was too great for speaking, Miss
Louisa said something about her riding habit. ‘It
had, she thought, got entangled round her feet. She
had let go of it to take a white camellia which Mr.
Gibbons had held out to her just as she went out at
the door of the greenhouse. She did not seem to
know that the steps had been slippery ; and it was
only in a low voice that Phcebe’s father said some-
thing about them. Sick, and trembling, and bewil-
dered, did Phoebe run about at the command of her
mother, as preparations were made for the setting of
the leg, which Mr. Hammond, when he came, pro-
nounced to be broken, with a compound.fracture.,
Mr. Shirley, Mrs. Yates, and Allen came quickly
down from the Hall ; and there was the greatest
tae and consternation about the accident, although

iss Louisa bore it so wonderfully well, and tried to
convince every body that it was no great matter,
and that she would soon be well. There were some
arrangements begun for carrying her up in the car-
riage to the Hall, or upon the mattress as she lay ;
but Mr. Hammond pointed out the very great
advantages of her remaining where she was. If she
could but stay where she was for a week or two, the
cure could be affected so mu@h more easily ; indeed,
he said, that he could warrant her walking in half
the time, than if she were carried home, whether
after or before the setting. Miss Louisa then decided



-26 IN SCHOOL

herself to remain. It would altogether be better,
she said, and would spare her sister the sight of her
sufferings—and so it was all arranged, that the little
inner parlour at the Gibbons’ should be fitted up
into a bed-room as quickly as possible, and that the
sufferer should be at once laid in the position in which
she must remain until the knitting together of the
broken bone had taken place, so as to admit of her
being conveyed home in acarriage. Within an hour
from the painful operation of setting the leg, and the
bandaging and splintering it up, poor Miss Louisa
was able to look composedly around her in Mrs.
Gibbons’ little bed-room, and declare that she felt
herself quite composed, and quite thankful, as the
accident was to happen, that it should have hap-
pened there. The three weeks prescribed by Mr.
Hammond, would, no doubt, pass very comfortably ;
and with Mrs. Gibbons’ kind care, and the attendance
of Phcebe and Ruth, with visits once a day from Mrs.
Yates and Allen, to say nothing of the calls which
her father and sister and other friends and acquaint-
ances would pay her, there would be nothing left to
wish for. |
Through the whole of that day, Phoebe Gibbons
was more unhappy than she had ever before been in
her life. She said to herself, that it was her fault
Miss Louisa was suffering so much; and though
no one reproached her for it, or thought of it as an
accident that could have been avoided, she felt sure
herself that it was caused by her own negligence.
Every time that Phoebe saw her father, she dreaded
to receive from him reproaches about her neglect ;
but strange to say, though he actually spoke of
the steps being slippery, and said that some ashes or
sand ought to have been thrown down, he never
seemed to remember his having given orders for it
to be done. ‘This forgetfulness of her father’s, to-
gether with Miss Louisa’s own belief that it was



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 27

her riding-habit which threw her down, silenced at
last the reproaches of Phcebe’s conscience. Shig per-
suaded herself, that after all, it was no fault of hers,
and that it would be quite nonsense to speak of
having had any share in the accident. What good
could it possibly do to Miss Louisa, now that all was
over? And how zealously she would wait upon her,
and try to make amends for this little piece of negli-
gence ; and if she should ever be her maid-servant,
how devotedly she would attend to her and Miss
Gertrude, through weeks, and months, and years.
While these feelings were in her mind, it was a
relief to her now to have many little offices to per-
form for her kind friend who was so helpless and
dependent upon others ; and Miss Louisa seemed to
like no one to wait upon her so well as Phebe. For
a day or two she and Ruth were to stay away from
school, that they might assist their mother and read
to Miss Louisa when she was free enough from pain
to be able to give her attention to a book; but by
the beginning of the next week Miss Louisa was sure
that she should not require so much assistance, and
was determined that the girls should only stay away
from school on alternate days, and she wished that
everything else should go on in the usual way, so
ae they were, if possible, to forget that she was
there.

It was as well for Phoebe, perhaps, that Miss Louisa
decided this; for before the end of the week, she
began to find the sort of employment that now
fell upon her rather irksome. She felt herself
awkward, and wanting in aptness in doing several
things which Miss Louisa seemed to take it for
granted that she could do well; and it seemed
strange to her to have to set aside so completely
her books and lessons. Almost unconsciously to
herself, she allowed Ruth to do many little matters
in Miss Louisa’s room, which she had at first under-



28 * IN SCHOOL

taken to do, but which she felt dissatisfied with
herself for not managing well ; and Miss Louisa had
not arrived at the fourth day of her imprisonment
at the cottage without finding out that Kuth Gibbons
was not the slow girl that she had fancied her, but
was most active and alert as an assistant nurse.

The little room in which Miss Louisa lay was
separated from Mrs. Gibbons’ kitchen only by a
wooden partition, and down one side of it passed
the staircase which led up to the bedroom of the
girls, separated also only by a wooden partition.
As she lay there alone and in silence, she could hear
nearly everything that passed in the little cottage,
and she liked to listen to all their doings. It never
occurred to her that she should by this means find
out some family secrets ; on the contrary, it-gave
her at first pleasant thoughts to dwell on, as she
seemed, for the first time in her life, really to know
well what life in a cottage was. How thrifty and
contented were the lives of that father and mother !
With the faintest glimmering of morning twilight,
Andrew Gibbons was up, down stairs, and out in
his garden ; and not long after, was heard the
mother lighting the kitchen fire, and then filling
the kettle at the pump, ready for breakfast. Then
came the sweeping of floors and scouring of hearths.
The voices were evidently rather hushed for fear of
disturbing her ; and after the first stirring of the
family, she generally dozed again until near the
time of her own breakfast being brought to her, but
not until she had heard little David’s merry laugh
or whistle, as he put on his boots, of washed his
face in the back-kitchen, before going out to father
in the garden. Half between sleeping and waking,
she heard the mother talking to one of her girls, as
the pigs and chickens were fed, and in the intervals
of fetching the bread from the baker’s, the milk
from the dairy-farm at the end of the village—and



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 29

then the rattling of cups and saucers for breakfast.
She said to herself—‘ Now Phoebe has gone fer the
bread, and Ruth is at home.’ But the talking had
ceased, and presently it was Ruth who came in with
a story about the roll for Miss Louisa not being out
of the oven yet. Where, then, was Phebe? She
dozed again, and was awakened by a knocking above.

‘Make haste, Phoebe ; Miss Louisa’s breakfast is
nearly ready to take in to her.’

There was a second summons, and the breakfast
evidently waited until Phoebe came down. But
before this, Ruth had been in to bring the basin and
water that she liked to refresh herself with before
her breakfast came. ‘The pillows were all shaken,
and the support for her back so nicely contrived,
and the room made airy and tidy—all so quickly
and yet noiselessly, before Phoebe came in with
the tray. After breakfast, Allen came down from
the Hall to dress her young mistress, and comb and
brush her hair, and make her comfortable for the
day. It was the end of the tirst week after the
accident, that Allen was later than usual one
morning, and Miss Louisa grew impatient, so that
Ruth begged to be allowed to supply her place.
She had seen how Allen arranged her hair, she said,
and was sure that she could do it in the same way.
And so she did, most skilfully and nice. Seeing
how comfortable Ruth had made Miss Louisa, ren-
dered Phcebe more anxious than ever that day for
the time when she should read aloud while Miss
Louisa worked at her embroidery frame. But it
was Saturday, and Miss Louisa was sure that the
girls would be wanted by their mother, and she had
a great fancy herself for assisting Mrs. Gibbons in
some of her household concerns. She would darn
some stockings for her, she said, and insisted on
having Andrew Gibbons’ coarse worsted stockings
and little David’s socks brought in to her. But



30 IN SCHOOL

there were no holes! They had all been so carefully
mended, that there was nothing to do. :

‘It really does you great credit, Mrs. Gibbons,’
said Miss Louisa, when she found she was too late.
‘T cannot think how you can find time for work.’

‘It is Ruth, Ma’am, who mends them generally ;
for my sight is bad, and I have no time for needle-
work, except at nights.’

‘Ruth, indeed !’ said Miss Louisa, surprised, ‘and
not Pheebe ?’

‘Why, yes, you see Ma’am, Phoebe has always her
lessons to attend to. She must mind her book.’

These words caused some thoughts to pass through
Miss Louisa’s mind, that she had never had before.
Was it possible that Phoebe’s minding her book had
interfered with her minding her duties at home ?

The next day being Sunday, the father and
mother were not up quite so soon as usual ; yet still
there was great stir in the family at an early hour,
and a good deal of brushing of coats and hats ready
for church.

‘Only look here at my jacket, mother,’ cried little
David, in the midst of his operations, and in a louder
voice than he would have spoken, had he remembered
their new inmate, ‘ only see this rent that you told
sister Phoebe to mend. What shail I do for church?’

‘ Really I must say Phoebe is too bad to have for-
gotten that, so often as I have told her of it,’ said
her mother.

Phoebe was so late down that morning, that Mrs.
Gibbons herself brought in Miss Louisa’s tray ; and
it was Phoebe’s foot heard running down stairs after
all the rest were dressed, and had started for churth.

Sitting by Miss Louisa’s bedside in the afternoon,
it was really quite surprising to hear how well
Pheebe read aloud the evening service, and after-
wards she repeated quite beautifully one of Heber’s
hymns ; yet still it did not give Miss Louisa as much



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 31

shill
— ld

~

a

ll

a

ic il



pleasure as usual to hear her pupil’s performances.
She said nothing to Phebe then, but she thought to
herself that she should be glad if the coming week
should alter her impression about Phoebe’s character
at home. She resolved to notice more particularly.
Now, unfortunately for Phoebe, her doings at home
would by no means bear this close observation ; and
it. was impossible for Miss Louisa not to discover how
much difference it made to her comfort, according to
whether it was Phoebe’s or Ruth’s day for being at
home ; although, perhaps, Phoebe was the most fussy
in her attentions to her. For a long time one
morning she was left by Phoebe with the window-
curtain so that the sun came full in her eyes, after
every one knowing that a certain adjustment of it
was necessary to prevent this ; and Miss Louisa had



32 IN SCHOOL

not liked to call Phoebe to alter it, because she
thought that she was engaged with her mother,
when it turned out afterwards that she had gone in
to a neighbour’s to gossip. Another afternoon, she
left the room, when Miss Louisa was sending her up
to the Hall, and neglected to move the table near
enough for her to reach her embroidery silk when
she wanted a needleful, and forgot to bring her the
glass of water that she had particularly begged for
before she went away. Now Ruth never seemed to
forget these kinds of little matters, which are of so
much importance to a helpless invalid, who is wholly
dependent on others. She seemed always to foresee,
as well as to remember what was necessary to Miss
Louisa’s comfort. It was Ruth, too, who found out
the best way of rubbing her leg so as to prevent the
cramp, which very much troubled her, from lying so
long in one position, and even Mr. Hammond could
trust her to loosen the bandage occasionally, she did
it so expertly and well.

Out of Miss Louisa’s room, too, it seemed as if, on
the days when Phoebe was at home, all went wrong,
The pots boiled over on the little kitchen fire. The
shower came down before the clothes on the hedge
were taken in, in spite of her mother telling Phoebe
to run out at the first threatening of rain. While
her mother had gone up the village on an errand, the
fire under the kettle for tea was let to die out—in
fact it would seem as if Phoebe had not always her
wits about her, and that the cleverness for which she
was distinguished at school was never called forth
upon those little household matters, which, though
simple and easy enough, yet require, after all, some
thought, and are of importance, because, by their
neglect, the comfort of all around is destroyed. Miss
Louisa was thinking how she should make this plain
to Phoebe, and by what means she should prove to
her the worthlessness of knowledge gained by a



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 30

neglect of such duties, when her sister Gertrude
came down one day to talk over the question of
finding a substitute for: Allen, their maid. Allen’s
lover, it appeared, was getting impatient for the
wedding to take place, and it seemed desirable to
make a selection from among the young girls in
the village, so that she might get into good training
before their journey abroad was fixed. Would it not
be better, Miss Gertrude said, to speak to Phoebe and
her mother at once? Miss Louisa hesitated. She
said she would rather defer the decision for another
week, and expressed a hope that neither Mrs. Yates
nor Allen would talk to Phoebe before the matter
was quite settled ; and her sister left her, wondering
what could have led Louisa to hesitate, after all the
praise that she had given to the Gibbons family
generally. She had spoken of their kindness to her-
self, and of their truly respectable and industrious
manner of life; and as for Phoebe—it was scarcely
to ae supposed that she was less of a favourite than
usual.

It was in the middle of Miss Louisa’s last week at
the cottage that an occurrence took place, which
settled this question, with regard to Pheebe, in a very
painful manner. Spring was fast advancing at that
time, and yet there were sharp frosts at night, which
made it necessary for Andrew Gibbons to continue
all his precautions with regard to his more delicate
plants ; and the chimney of his little greenhouse
still smoked each evening, and his frames each after-
noon were carefully closed, and covered with matting.
One day, which had been particularly fine and warm,
it happened that he had to leave home to go to the
other side of the neighbouring town ; and he started
after dinner, taking little David with him, before it
was necessary to arrange these matters for the night.
He did not expect to be home till late ; so he gave
strict injunctions to Phoebe to go up the garden at



34 IN SCHOOL

three o’clock, and close the frames he had left open,
that they might get all the warm sun that was still
to be had. Phcebe said to herself that she would
not forget the charge, when she went to read to
Miss Louisa after dinner ; and she was the less likely
to forget it, because Miss Louisa was now frequently
in the habit of asking her, when she came into her
room, if she was sure that she had no little jobs to
do for her mother. She thought to herself how she
would jump up as the clock struck three, and run up
the garden, and Miss Louisa should see how she
remembered her father’s request. All turned out,
however, that afternoon, differently to what Phoebe
had expected. She had not read many pages to Miss
Louisa, before Mr. Brookbanks called to sit with her,
and sent Phoebe up to the Rectory for a book which
he wanted to lend Miss Louisa. Mrs. Brookbanks
kept her some time waiting, because she had a lady
calling at the time, and could not get away to seek
out the book. Then, Pheebe, on her return, fell in
with Allen, who had been taking down some jelly
from the Hall to Miss Louisa. Phoebe was not sorry
to have a talk with Allen, and was much interested
and excited by hearing from her that the wedding-
day was fixed, and, ‘as far as she knew,’ no one yet
engaged to take her place. Allen renewed her con-
ditional promises to Pheebe of assistance in the hair-
dressing and mantua-making departments, and took
Phoebe with her into the village-shop while she
chose a ribbon for her wedding bonnet. By the
time that Phoebe got home again, her mother was
impatient for her to see after getting Miss Louisa’s
tea ; and after that Miss Louisa sent her up to the
Hall with a message to Mrs. Yates. It was, of
course, quite dark by the time that Phoebe returned
home, and her father only coming back quite late—
just before bed-time—there was nothing which helped
to remind her that his commands about the frames



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 35

had been forgotten. She never once thought of
them—not even when she looked out in the mornin
and saw how everything was white with frost an
sparkling in the sunshine. And that morning,
though cold, was so very fine! It seemed as if every
body in the cottage was feeling unusually cheerful
from the brightness of the day. Miss Louisa, as she
lay on her mattress, waiting for breakfast, was
thinking how delightful was the feeling of getting
well from any complaint, and considering to herself
how merciful it was in a kind Providence that pain
and suffering should be the means of making us
conscious of the blessing of health. She then won-
dered to herself when the day would come that her
sister Gertrude would feel this certainty of getting
well that she did herself. She counted the days that
were left before she was to be removed from the
cottage, and thought of the pleasant week she should
spend, lying on the sofa in the drawing-room or
library at home, chatting and reading with her
father and sister; and then of the first walk she
should be able to take with crutches on the lawn ;
and then how the crutches would be exchanged for
a stick ; and, lastly, how the stick would be thrown
away, and all the preparations be begun for the
journey abroad. How very delightful were all these
anticipations ! and while they passed through her
mind, she was listening to such a sweet bit of
warbling from a robin that was perched near the
window, waiting for some crumbs from her breakfast.
And within the kitchen, where Mrs. Gibbons and
Phoebe were busy, things were quite as pleasant.
Pheebe had risen in good time that morning, and
was in good spirits, because she was satisfied with
herself for so doing. She was chatting cheerfully
with her mother, who was busy sprinkling some
muslins ; and her mother was particularly cheerful,
because it promised to be such a fine day for getting



36 IN SCHOOL

the rest of her things Uried. Alas! that anger and
sorrow should have entcred the cottage that morning,
as well as the sunshine and song of the bird !
Pheebe was setting the breakfast-things, when she
happened to look up as her father came down the
garden path. He had something in his hand, and
seldom had Phoebe seen him look as he did that
moment. He was red with anger and vexation.
Coming into the kitchen, he threw down on the
clean table-cloth a number of young plants that had



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evidently been just pulled up. ‘There,’ said he,
‘see what comes of my trusting to a good-for-
nothing idle girl! Look at my young seedling
balsams, destroyed with the frost of last night ; all
because you, Phoebe, never shut the frames, as I



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 37

desired you. I tell you, girl, you are good-for-
nothing !

Phebe stood aghast. ‘I quite forgot, father—
indeed I quite forgot.’

‘Quite forgot, indeed !’ said her father, still more
angry, ‘and how many shillings are lost out of my.
pocket by your quite forgetting ? Was it not enough
to have caused Miss Louisa to break her leg with
your forgetting, as you know you did ;

‘Oh father, spare me—spare me! Don’t say that,
father !? cried Phoebe, bursting into an agony of
tears, and covering her face with her hands, as she
sunk upon a chair. ‘Oh mother, mother, what will
become of me—what will become of me ?”

‘Andrew,’ said her mother, reproachfully, ‘Andrew
Gibbons, do you speak in this way to your own
child? It is cruel of you to say such things. Do
you remember,’ said she, lowering her voice, ‘ who
hears us?’ and she pointed to the door of Miss
Louisa’s room.

Andrew Gibbons checked himself in the midst of
his anger ; but Pheebe, starting up, said, amidst her
sobs, ‘No, mother; father is right. It was my fault
that Miss Louisa fell down—I know it was; and I
am rightly punished that she should know it. I will
go and tell her that it wasall my fault ;’ and opening
Miss Louisa’s door, she went in, and almost falling
on her knees beside the bed, she told what had hap-
pened the day of her accident. She entreated her
forgiveness ; and accusing herself of being, as her
father had said, ‘good for nothing,’ owned her
thoughtlessness and negligence. Never was any one
more penitent than Phoebe, nor more completely.
awakened to a sense of her own faults. She not only
told Miss Louisa all about the forgetfulness that had
been the cause of her accident, but’ she confessed to
having stifled the feeling which, at the time, should.
have induced her to frankly own her negligence





38: IN SCHOOL

She described what she had suffered during those
first days, and how anxious she had been to make.
amends. ‘But you see, Miss Louisa, I am so fixed
in my careless habits. Father is right in calling me.
good-for-nothing,’ and she burst again into tears and
sobbing.

‘No, Phcebe, you are not good-for-nothing,’ said
Miss Louisa kindly and encouragingly ; ‘you are
good fer much, when you can only cure yourself of
this want of thought and care. And do not fear
that this can be done. You love God, Phoebe; and
it has been a pleasure to you to learn much of what
God has made so beautiful and good around us. You
have been taught how all things are “ministers of
his which do his pleasure,” from the sun in its daily
course, to the meanest flower that blossoms at its
appointed season, so that through obedience to his.
will, all is order, and regularity and beauty. And
must not we too obey and faithfully perform our
allotted part in life? Are not the commands of your
parents, and all these little affairs which belong to
your daily life—do not these form the task which
your heavenly Father has given you todo? Do you
think that merely to perform well your school tasks
for the sake of gaining praises and prizes—Do you
think that this is all which God requires of you ?’

‘Oh, no, Miss Louisa; I see it all now. I know
that I have been thinking too much of praise at.
school. I know that Ruth is much more of a com-
fort to mother than I have ever been. And father
—oh, Miss Louisa, to think of your leg being broken,
all because I never minded father’s bidding! Oh,
you never will be able to forgive me, and I never
shall be happy again.’ And Phoebe’s tears flowed
faster than ever. _ |

It need hardly be said that Miss Louisa most
freely and frankly forgave Phoebe for the injury
done to herself by her thoughtlessness ; but she did



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 39

not. scruple to point out to her the punishment
which would very naturally fall upon her for her
faults. She told her how her sister and herself had
formerly thought that she might supply the place of
Allen to them—but that now it was out of the ques-
tion. Her sister Gertrude was too delicate, and
required too much the assistance of a careful and
thoughtful attendant, for her to like that any one
should be engaged upon whom she could not. quite
depend. ‘And though I depend, Pheebe, upon your
never forgetting your promises of amendment, I
cannot feel sure that it may not be long before you
acquire that clear and strong sense of duty, which
will enable others to trust to your preferring at all
times to do that which is right, rather than that
which is pleasantest.’ a

Phoebe submitted in silence and sorrow. She
had feared it: would come to this, and she knew that.
she deserved the punishment ; but when she remem-
bered how disappointed and grieved her mother and
father would be at her having lost such a place as
that of Allen’s at the Hall, her grief knew no bounds.
Suddenly she rose from her knees at the side of Miss
Louisa, and ran up stairs to her bed-room. She
returned bringing with her the prize which had
been given her for her punctual attendance at school
—the nice little gilt-edged book which Mr. Brook-
banks had presented with such words of kindness
and praise. She begged Miss Louisa to take this
book back again from her, and to tell Mr. Brook-
banks that she did not deserve it. She owned that
without Ruth, she never would have been at school
in time each morning. She confessed, that ‘man
and many a time it was only by Ruth urging he
to get up, and staying behind to make their bed and
assist her mother, that she had been able to get so
soon to school; and she ended by entreating Miss
Louisa to take into consideration having Ruth for
her maid instead of herself.



40 IN SCHOOL

. ‘It is not for me, I khow, Miss Louisa,’ said she
humbly, ‘to be asking a favour at this time; but if
you only knew how careful and steady Ruth is, and
how nicely she would tend Miss Gertrude—and then
she is quite as old as Iam, though she is not so tall
—oh, Miss Louisa, if you would only have Ruth,
how pleased my mother would be !’

Miss Louisa was only too ready to grant this
request of Phoebe’s in behalf of her sister, and did
not think her quite unworthy of such a favour ; but
she refused to receive back the unmerited prize.
‘Accept it from me again,’ said she, ‘in remem-
brance of this hour ;’ and laying her hand upon
Phoebe’s much valued prize for good reading, which
she had also brought and laid upon the bed, it was
in a tone more earnest and impressive than usual,
that she added, ‘Study this book, dear Phoebe, more
carefully than ever, and seek from it the lessons of
faith and love, which will amend your life. Read
here of Jesus, the beloved Son of God—how he was
obedient even unto death, and who said of us who
should follow his high example, ‘“‘ that he who is
faithful even in that which is least, is faithful also
in much.”’

And Ruth was engaged to be the Miss Shirley’s
maid; and while the decision brought happiness
again to the Gibbons’ cottage, all thought the better
of Phcebe for the kind and generous pleasure that
she shewed at her sister’s good fortune.



CHAPTER IV.
ONWARD AND UPWARD.

During the first week of Miss Louisa’s return to th
Hall, and as she realized her pleasant anticipationd
connected with home and health, Phoebe Gibbons
was the subject of many of her talks with her father
and sister as she lay on her sofa, while “Mr. Brook-

_ Ni ie T rr
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banks, in his calls, was confided in, and enlisted for
assistance in settling what was best to be done for
her. -In spite of the preference which had been
given to her sister, Phoebe was by no means to be
neglected or lost sight of ; and there was still so



42 IN SCHOOL

much of good in her character, that her friends did
not despair of her becoming one day a good and
useful woman. They saw, too,-that her faults had
partly arisen out of the notice and admiration
bestowed on her quickness and cleverness, and by
the too great indulgence which had been shown to
Bc at home ; so they hoped that, under new cir-
cumstances, she might be able to acquire new and
better habits and a higher sense of duty.

After much consideration on the subject, it was
found, that during the absence of the family abroad,
and while a great many changes and ‘clearings up’
were going on at the Hall, a young assistant to Mrs.
Yates would be a very desirable addition to the
number of servants to be left behind. Mrs. Yates
had always been fond of Phoebe, and liked greatly
the idea of getting her into good training for a yet
better place, could one be found for her. She pro-
mised to watch over her. most carefully, and to
endeavour to make her punctual, active, and dili-
gent, pledging herself that her partiality for Phoebe
shoeld not lead her to overlook her failings. Phoebe
was still to be allowed to go down to assist her
mother on days when she was particularly busy, and
was to attend as usual the Sunday-school, where she
had begun to give assistance as a teacher among the
little ones. |

All these kind plans and arrangements made the
parting between the twin sisters less painful than
they had expected, as Ruth departed with her young
mistress on their foreign travels. They were happy
in the thought that they should hear of each other
through the letters which came to or went from
the Hall; and Phoebe was determined that there
should be no mention of her name by Mrs. Yates
without expressions of satisfaction at her conduct
as well.

And Ruth Gibbons proved to be exactly the kind



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 43

of attendant that Miss Gertrude wanted. She quite
surprised her young mistress by the readiness with
which she fell into the performance of all her duties ;
and as a travelling companion, her expertness in
packing and unpacking, and, more especially, her
punctuality on all occasions, made her a great com-
fort to them. The carpet-bags and boxes, which
were her poeue charge, were always ready
packed by the hour appointed ; and on no occasions
were things left behind at hotels, or Ruth and her
packages too late for steamboat or railway train.
She was, besides, not too much excited or bewildered
by the succession of novel sights which followed
quick on each other, as they passed through foreign
countries ; and when Miss Gertrude was tired, and
was obliged to stop at home and rest while her
father and sister went out to see old churches and
fine pictures, it was a real pleasure to her to have
a quiet companion like Ruth to read to her, and
talk to about what they had seen.

Ruth learnt a great deal from her kind mistresses
during this Journey, and she learnt yet more from
what she saw of the habits and manners of other
countries. She saw that it was not only in Sta-
pleford, or in England, that the greater number
of human beings have to live by labour; and she
observed, too, that living by labour was no reason
why people should not be contented and happy.
How happy seemed to her the women and girls that
she saw in Belgium, sitting at their house-doors,
weaving the beautiful lace for which the country
is remarkable. And it quite delighted her to walk
about their markets, and observe the white-capped
peasant women with their beautiful fruit and vege-
tables, eggs and flowers. She wished that these
things were more often sold in the open air in
England, instead of in close shops; and she re-
gretted.that in England people of that rank in life



44 . IN SCHOOL

did not wear a dress peculiar to themselves, so clean,
and tidy, and compact looking, instead of being
more often dressed out in the old clothes of ladies
and gentlemen. |

And when they came to the great river Rhine,
she was astonished, as they went up it in the
steamer, to see the great rafts of timber, which they
met floating down to the sea—the timber of trees, as
Mr. Shirley told her, that had grown in the forests
of Switzerland and the south of Germany, and of
which many of our houses and ships are made. She
saw upon these rafts, which were sometimes as
large as a good-sized field, how numbers of men
lived on them, to steer and take caré of them ;
and how they even built little huts upon them, in
which they cooked their food, so that their chimneys
smoked, and women sat at the doors and knitted
stockings. She saw the steep banks of the Rhine,
all covered with vine bushes, which the people most
carefully weeded and tended, turning to account
every little patch of earth on the most barren rock
for the growth of vines, of which, as she was told,
they afterwards made the grapes into wine. Then
in Switzerland she saw how industrious and thrifty
were the people, whether working in large factories
to manufacture silk and ribbon, or in little work-
shops to make clocks and watches, or in the fields
and on the sides of mountains, to tend cattle and
make cheese and butter in their little huts or
chalets high above where the grass grew. All this
she saw, and much more; and she liked to see how
cheerfully and contented the people looked, and
wished that in England people could sing over their
work so merrily, and dance in the evening, and
find time for pleasant walks; while she saw, at
the same time, that there was one thing in which
foreigners and English people were quite alike, and
which you could observe even in passing. quickly



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 45

through a country, and this was, that the thrifty
and industrious were the prosperous ones, and that
good character in all stations and ranks meets with
respect and esteem.

As Ruth saw and learnt all these things, pleasant
accounts from Stapleford were found from time
to time at post-offices in towns and cities. Mes-
sages from her father and mother and Pheebe, at
the ends of letters from the butler at the Hall,
and Mrs. Yates. Notices, too, of Phoebe in the
letter as being all that she could wish, which Miss
Louisa and Miss Gertrude were very glad to receive.

It was about a year after their leaving home that
one of these reports of Phoebe was more than usually
lengthy. Mrs. Yates described her as ‘ greatly im-
proved ;? and while she spoke of her as having
been of great assistance to her in getting the new
bed-furniture and window-curtains made, she told
also of how Pheebe had been busy latterly in dusting
and setting to rights all the library books, and
saying that she was sure Mr. Shirley would be
pleased with the beautiful copy she had made of the
old catalogue, to which she had added all the new
books and pamphlets, and written out so very neatly.
The only bad news in this letter was the account of the
failing health of Mrs. Presgrove, who was beginning
to fear that she could not get on at the school with-
out an assistant in her labours. The Miss Shirleys
were in Italy, where they had spent the greater
part of the time of their absence, and where Miss
Gertrude had recovered so much strength, that they
were beginning to think of fixing the day of their
return, when a letter arrived from Mrs. Yates, in
which was the news of Phcebe’s having met with a
very advantageous situation, through the recom-
mendation of Mr. Brookbanks, and as no parti-
culars were given, it served Ruth as a subject for
guessing and wondering over as they journeyed



46 IN SCHOOL

slowly home, where it could be that Phoebe had
gone—how far from Stapleford, and in what ca-
pacity ; but she hoped that it might not be long
after her return before she should see her.

It was the end of August when the Shirleys
reached England, and they were staying to rest a
few days in London, when it occurred to Miss
Louisa how much she should like to be back on the
first of September, in time for the school-examina-
tion. They had at first thought that this would be
out of the question, and had sent word to Mr. Brook-
banks and Mrs. Presgrove, that all must go on as
usual without them ; but Miss Louisa said she was
sure everybody would be so glad to have them pre-
sent, that it was worth while making an effort to
reach home on the morning of the very day, if
Ruth thought she could get all their new purchases
packed, and if Gertrude did not mind getting up in
time for a very early train. Ruth and Miss Gertrude
were only too willing to do this, and an announce-
ment was sent home, that their presence at the
examination might be confidently expected, should
nothing unforeseen occur.

Something unforeseen did occur that day, but not
of the nature to prevent their being present at the
examination. They left town very early on the first
of September, and the train reached the station
near Stapleford at noon, where a carriage waited to
take them to the Hall. As they drove through the
village, they looked anxiously from side to side to see
the well-known faces that looked out from doors and
windows. They were about to pass the school-
house, when Miss Louisa hastily putting her head
out, desired the coachman to stop. She must run
in for a moment, she said, to greet Mrs. Presgrove,
and take a look at the children. Ruth must get
down too, and go at once to her mother’s.

Miss Louisa hurried up the little school-house



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 47

garden, but had not crossed the threshold when she
called back Ruth. She had caught a glimpse of her
brother David—little no longer, and she must see
Ruth’s surprise to find how much he had grown.
He stood at the entrance of the school-room, with a
large pile of dahlias and asters before him, which he
had emptied from a basket on the floor—‘ If here
isn’t sister Ruth come home,’ exclaimed David, as
he sprang forward to meet her.

‘Miss Louisa Shirley !—Ruth Gibbons!’ cried a
number of voices from among the crowd of girls
who were clustered together at the end of the room.
The flower decorations for the examination had
begun, and the favourite old word was now being
written in gay autumnal flowers, for the third time,
on the walls. The portion that they had completed
stood there not unmeaningly, for they had written
as far as Excel—

But Mrs. Presgrove was not busied with the
flowers, but was seated as a spectator only in her
chair of state, and though, in answer to Miss Louisa’,
‘kind inquiries, she pronounced ‘herseéii mucn ‘petver-
yet she showed that she was not as strong as for
merly, as she slowly arose, and turning to the busy
group of children, who fell back as she spoke; she
said, ‘I must introduce my new assistant to you,
ma’am—my very able and excellent assistant, I may
say—’

‘Phoebe! Phoebe Gibbons !—you don’t say so!’
exclaimed Miss Louisa, in delighted surprise—
‘Ruth !—your sister Phoebe!’ and Pheebe taller
than ever, and womanly grown and dressed, ad-
vanced, blushing, and happy to meet her kind
friend and sister.

‘ Yes, ma’am,’ said Mrs. Presgrove, ‘ Mr. Brook-
banks was quite sure that you would approve of the
step, when you knew how improved and steady
Phoebe has become. She has won all our confidence,



48 IN SCHOOL AND OUT OF SCHOOL.

I assure you, Miss Louisa, and is very well able to fill
the post, considering her forwardness in learning. But
I tell her, ma’am, that her knowledge would never
have fitted her for the task, or made me feel that I
might trust my girls to her, if it had not been for the
improvement that has taken place in her character.
As Mr. Brookbanks said to us, you know, ma’am, on
a former occasion, she has raised herself in the best
possible way that any one can do, for she has risen
higher in character, and left behind her faults.’

Andrew Gibbons and his wife were not a little
proud and happy as they took tea that evening in
the school-room, seated between their two daugh-
ters, and knew in what respect and esteem they
were held, on account of their excellence in character
and conduct,

And after being for some years an assistant to
Mrs. Presgrove, Phoebe became at last the sole
mistress of the Stapleford school. She filled the
office ably and well. She proved a good teacher and
manager, and her own experience helped her much
in forming the characters of her pupils. She never
allowed herself to be satisfied with mere forwardness
at school, without making herself well acquainted
with the character and conduct of her girls at home,
nor was she satisfied to observe in them a love of
knowledge, unless she could feel sure that they loved
duty too; and she, above all things, endeavoured
to encourage in them a loving submission to the
will of God, which is best shown in a faithful per-
formance of all the duties of that station of life in
which He has thought fit to place us.

LONDON:
RICHARD BARRETT, PRINTER, MARK LANE.






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Page 35.

Gerald at Court.



THE

FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.



The aoe Dissoweay: Page 41.

London:

GROOMBRIDGE AND SONS,

PATERNOSTER ROW.






THE

FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.
ae

CHAPTER I.
A SHIPWR EO.

Ir our young readers will take a map of Europe,
and look to the west, they will see a broad wide sea
called the Baltic, stretching northwardand separating
the countries of Norway and Sweden from Russia.
To the east of this sea is a gulf, called the Gulf of
Finland, and at the extremity of that gulf, at the
mouth of the river Neva, stands the city of St.
Petersburg, the capital of Russia in Europe.

St. Petersburg is at the present time a populous
and beautiful city. It contains so many splendid
buildings, that it is sometimes ¢alled a city of palaces,
but about the beginning of the eighteenth century
(which is a hundred and fifty years ago,) the ground
on which it stands was an immense bog, or marsh,
surrounded by dreary forests. The only persons who
dwelt on the then desolate spot were some fishermen
who built a few little cabins near the water’s edge ;
but as the river at certain*seasons of the year fre-
quently overflowed its banks, and the cabins were
sometimes washed away, even these few little tene-
ments were often deserted.

I dare say most of our young readers have heard
or réad of Peter the Great, the celebrated Emperor,
or Czar of Russia. He built the city of St. Peters-
burg, and called it after his own name ; but of that



6 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

we shall speak hereafter, at present we have to do
with a humble individual, named Michael Kopt,
who lived in one of the cabins we have spoken of.

Michael’s father was a. Swede, and could read
and write, and was therefore far in advance of
the ignorant Russian serfs, among whom he lived.
Having been carried prisoner to Russia, during
one of the numerous wars between the Russians
and Swedes, he had been compelled to obtain
his living as a fisherman. He taught his son
Michael all that he had himself learned, and also
brought him up t@his trade. When Michael became
a man, he married a young woman, the daughter of
one of the same craft ; they were very poor, but
they lived happily together, for Margaret was thrifty
and affectionate, and Michael steady, sober and
industrious. During the fishing season, Michael
applied himself very diligently to his business, and
with his wife’s assistance, dried and salted the
greater part of the fish which he caught, then, when
the floods were expected, they removed to a village
some miles distant, and lived on the produce of
their joint labour.

One season Michael and his wife remained in the
fishing-hut, a few weeks later than usual, on ‘account
of the fineness of the weather, and there being no
signs of the floods. However, on the day before that
fixed for their departure, a violent storm suddenly
arose, and it was evident that the cabins were in
danger of being swept away, either by the strong
gale which blew from’ the sea, or by the water.
Terrified by the prospect, the two or three fishermen
who had been their companions hurried off, even in
the midst of the storm, hoping to reach a place of
safety, before the floods overtook them ; and Michael
and Margaret were preparing to follow their example,
when they were startled by hearing the firing of guns
as from a ship in distress. The fisherman and his



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. vA

wife looked at each other in deep concern, but
neither spake. What could they do to assist the
unhappy mariners, and the delay of one hour might
be death to themselves. |

‘Shall we go Margaret?’ Michael at length broke
the silence by saying. ,

‘Can we help those poor creatures ?’ she asked.

We cannot do anything to save the ship,’ he
replied, ‘but we may perhaps be of some service
should any of the people be thrown upon the strand.’

‘Then we will stop awhile, and trust to God’s
protecting care,’ she nobly rejoimed ; and as she
spoke, she laid down the little bundle of clothes
which she had hastily put together, intending to
carry with them. |

Michael now ran to the front window of the cottage,
with the idea of getting a view of the vessel in dis-
tress, but he only reached the spot in time to see her
go down. The wind had driven her with violence
against a rock, which had made a large opening in
her keel, through which the water rushed so fast, that
all attempts to check it proved vain, and she sunk
almost instantly to the bottom. _

‘All are lost!’ exclaimed Margaret, who had
followed her husband, and was now standing behind
him with her hands clasped together, and her eyes
raised toward heaven in an attitude of prayer.

‘Nay, dear Madgy, it is possible that some poor
creature may be drifted on the shore,’ cried Michael ;
‘I will at all events go and see.’

Margaret’s heart quailed with fear, lest her hus-
band’s life should fall a sacrifice to his humanity ; but
she could not oppose his generous resolve, so she
suffered him to go without a word of remonstrance.

As soon as he left the door, she fell on her knees
and prayed that he might be protected in his perilous
enterprise.

She arose in a more composed state of mind, and



8 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

then sat down to await her husband’s return. Her
patience was not long tried, he came in shortly after,
bearing in his arms a wicker-basket bound up in a
sheet of oil-cloth. The poor woman’s first words
were an exclamation of thankfulness for his safe
return ; she next eagerly inquired what he had
brought with him.

‘I have brought thee a child, Madgy, what say you
to oe Y cried the fisherman ‘looking at her with a
smile.



” ©A child!’ she repeated.

‘Yes, a brave boy. I found him in one of the holes
in the rock.’

‘Is he alive?’ asked Margaret, drawing: back the
oil-cloth that she might get a sight of the babe.



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 9

‘Alive, yes; the urchin seemed to be quite enjoy-
ing his new home.’

‘Don’t jest, dear Michael,’ cried Margaret ; ‘ the
mother of this poor little creature has most ‘likely
found a watery grave.’

‘True, but you will be a mother to him, wont you?’

‘Aye, that I will,’ responded the kind-hearted
woman, catching the child in her arms, and folding
him to her bosom. ‘ Aye, that I will, Miche, Ill carry
him myself, if you will take the baggage. But is this
poor babe the only. creature who has escaped ?’

‘I have reason to believe so,’ returned the fisher-
man ; ‘but I could not remain longer on the shore,
the water flowed in so fast. We must haste now,
dear Madgy, or we shall be too late.’

Margaret wanted not a second bidding, but after
having hastily wrapped the babe in a bear’s skin, she
and her husband quitted the hut..



CHAPTER II.
A JOURNEY AND A WELCOME HOME.

MicHakEt and Marearet had, as our young readers
may suppose, a very unpleasant and perilous journey
over boggy land, in the midst of a violent storm too.
The charge of an infant of three or four months old,
of course added to their cares and difficulties ; but
both the fisherman and his wife had stout hearts
which would not soon sink under dangers ; and the
Russians are naturally a hardy people. Their winter
abode was the cottage in which Margaret had spent
her childhood and early youth, which was still occu-
pied by her parents, they were therefore sure of a
hearty and affectionate welcome when their journey
was over. The old people had been very anxious
about them, fearing from their long stay, that some
evil had overtaken them, so the present meeting was
every way delightful.

‘Wehave brought some live-stock with us, mother,’
said Michael, smiling and looking significantly at his
wife’s mother.

‘ Live stock,’ repeated the dame, ‘why, what have
you got ?’

Margaret here took off the bearskin covering and
displayed her little charge to view.

‘What, a baby!’ cried the old woman in a tone
of amazement.

Wet and weary as the travellers were, it was not
a time to keep up a jest, otherwise Michael would
have let the old people guess for a while, before he
told them in what way the little foundling had been
thrown upon their protection, as it was, he explained
all in a sentence, and: then begged that they would
let him have something to eat.



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. Il

Margaret felt more disposed for taking rest than
for sharing in the meal, so she and her mother
retired together into one of the sleeping-rooms, taking
the infant with them.

The storm subsided in the course of the night, but
no effort could be made to rescue the shipwrecked
people, even should any of them have drifted to the
shore, for the river had by this time so far overflowed
its banks, that the path the fisherman and his wife
had so recently trodden, was not now to be seen. As
there appeared but little probability that the child
would ever be claimed, Michael and his wife resolved
on adopting him, and treating him in every respect as
if he were their own. The little fellow seemed very
well satisfied with his new friends. He smiled and
cooed at Margaret, in return for her caresses, and
tried to imitate Michael’s loud ringing laugh.
With Margaret’s mother too, he was an especial
favourite, and even the old man was much pleased
with this addition to their family,

The matter to be decided on next was, what name
the little stranger should bear. Margaret was re-
minded by his wicker-cradle and the perils of his
infancy of Moses in his ark of bulrushes, on the
banks of the Egyptian river. She could not help
thinking, she said, that a mother’s tender hand had
fastened him so securely in his little bed, and that
a mother’s prayers had saved him from a watery
grave, and she proposed that he should be called by
the name of Moses. However, when the swaddling-
clothes in which he had been found were closely
examined, an almost indistinct mark was found on
one of them, which after some little difficulty, was
discovered to be Gerald. It was therefore deter-
mined to call him by that name.



CHAPTER IIT.
A GLANCE AT RUSSIAN HISTORY.

Tren years glided away and very little change took
place in the fisherman’s family, excepting that the
infant foundling grew up, by degrees, into a fine
intelligent boy. In the long nights of the Russian
winter, unless there is some kind of mental employ-
ment, time passes very wearily. Michael had so far
profited by his father’s instructions, as to be able to
impart the elements of useful knowledge to Gerald,
who was both an apt and eager scholar. His natural
intelligence had thus been quickened, and his thirst
for knowledge increased by the humble but use-
ful instructions of his kind foster father. While
they used to sit round the large warm stove, when
they had read from the Bible or some other of the
one or two books, which Michael inherited from his
father, Michael would then relate incidents in the
history of Sweden, or talk about the great protestant
reformers—or the learned men his father had known
or heard of at Upsal, his native city. Gerald was
never tired of hearing about these things, and the
thoughts that came into his mind when Michael
talked about the famous university of Upsal, where
so many people passed their time in acquiring or
imparting knowledge were quite exciting, and. he
could not help hoping that something or other might
occur that would place him in the way of acquiring
more knowledge than he was likely to obtain in the
hut of a poor fisherman, dearly as he loved his kind
benefactors. Gerald was a good and grateful child, and
desirous of doing all he could to assist those generous
friends who had acted the part of parents to him.



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 13

Even when quite a little boy, he tried to help his
father, as he called him, in his craft. He was very
fond too, of his good mother, as he called Margaret,
and you may be sure they loved him very dearly.

Previous to the reign of Peter the great, the Russian
empire had been far behind the other nations of
Kurope in the progress of civilization. Even the
highest classes amongst the people were extremely
ignorant, very few of them could even read or write,
and they spent the principal part of their time
in feasting and drinking. They had neither ships,
nor sailors, and no manufacturing class of people,
except a few of the serfs who worked for the sole
benefit of their masters. The fine arts were un-
known, and the most useful arts were very im-
perfectly understood. At that time Peter, shared
the throne .with his elder brother, Ivan; but
Ivan, being only a little above an idiot in mind,
was a mere cipher. Peter, on the contrary, was
possessed of a powerful intellect and great sagacity,
and he had moreover an enterprising spirit. One of
his early acts on: ascending the throne, was, to send
a number of the young nobles of his court into Italy,
Germany, and Holland, to gain instruction in mili-
tary and naval affairs. He also sent to foreign
countries for ship-builders and various artisans, but
not satisfied with that, he afterwards resolved on
visiting some of those countries himself, for the
express purpose of learning how his own ‘kingdom
might best be benefited.

In pursuance of this plan, he, together with a few
chosen associates, first went to Holland, at which
place he worked as a common labourer in the dock-
yards, no one but those of his own party knowing
who he was. He next came to England. It was his
purpose to visit Italy likewise, but a revolt amongst
his people at home, and rumours that his sister
Sophia was trying to make herself empress of



14 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

Russia, obliged him to return after an absence of
only two years.

Having now acquired considerable knowledge in
ship-building and other valuable arts, Peter began.
to see the advantages which would accrue to his
country, by the establishment of a port on the Baltic
sea, at the mouth of the Neva. There were many
difficulties in the way of such an undertaking, and
one of the most formidable was, the low marshy state
of the land. These difficulties however, he deter-.
mined upon conquering. Had the Czar attempted to
accomplish the same ends by justifiable means, we
should admire his forethought and genius, but as on
the contrary, he carried them out by force and cruelty,
every humane heart must condemn the act as one of
tyranny and oppression. No seemingly desirable end
can justify us in using unlawful means.

To provide workmen for the undertaking, the
Emperor in the year 1703, sent bands of soldiers into
the villages with orders to compel those men who
were capable of labour to engage in the task. Our
young friends have no doubt heard of the press
gangs which were at one time allowed in England,
and of the conscription in France. Well, this
was a somewhat similar procedure, only instead
of being forced to become sailors and soldiers, as
the pressed men and conscripts were, these poor
people were compelled to make roads and rear a city
in an immense bog. The peasants, or serfs, as they
are called in Russia, were at that period in a very
degraded state. They were considered as much the
property of the nobles on whose estates they lived,
as any other live stock. Their houses mostly con-
fisted of but one room. In the centre of this room
was a large brick oven: in this they baked their
black rye bread ; and the top served for a bed for
the whole family at night. Their only articles of
furniture were, a lamp suspended from the ceiling,



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. : 15

and a rough bench or two fastened to the walls.
They were clothed in sheepskins, and their food was
of the coarsest kind. Bad as was their lot, however,
very few, if any of them, were willing to exchange it
for labour on public works of any kind, especially in
such an unhealthy situation as the marshes we have
spoken of. The impure air which rises from swampy
aud is almost sure to bring on fevers and other

isorders, Then no care was taken to make them
as comfortable as the circumstances would have per-
mitted ; no houses were provided for them to sleep
in, and the tools they had given them to work with
were so unsuitable and bad, that their labours were
thereby made much harder than they would other-
wise have been.

Exposed thus to hardships of every kind, the men,
as might be expected, perished by hundreds. But
these disastrous results were not allowed to interrupt
the work: for as fast as they died off, others were
pressed into the service and marched off to the place.
In Russia the Emperor has absolute power over all his
subjects : even the nobles, therefore, dared not to op-
pose the mandate, had they been so disposed. Among
the unhappy individuals who were chosen for the
purpose of filling up vacancies made by the sick and
deceased, was our friend Michael Kopt. His general
home being away from any of the villages, he, for
some time, escaped observation ; but when strong,
healthy men became scarce in the neighbourhood,
he and some of his companions were pressed into the
service, only a few minutes being given’ them for
preparing, and bidding adieu to their weeping friends.

Poor Margaret was for some time inconsolable,
and Gerald was almost in as much grief at seeing
her suffer. He tried to cheer her by every means in
his power ; but finding that she was hopeless of ever
having her husband back again, he formed a resolu-
tion which our young readers shall hear at another
time. -



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 17

came into the port should bring thirty stones, and
every boat ten, towards the erection of bridges and
other public buildings, Every peasant’s cart was
likewise compelled to bring three stones; and by
these means materials were raised free of cost for the
public works.

As the place at which Michael was set to work
was not many miles distant from the abode of his
family, he had an opportunity of seeing them occa-
sionally, which was a pleasure denied to most of the
labourers. Margaret and Gerald often went together,
and though it was frequently the case that they were
only allowed to speak with him for a few minutes,
they were glad to undertake the journey even for
that brief joy.

As Gerald was too young to carry on the fishing
craft alone, he. and Margaret resided wholly with
her parents. Gerald helped the old man to make
and mend fishing-tackle, which was now their
principal means of support; and Margaret did
anything she could to earn a trifle, still their
circumstances were very much worse than when
Michael was at home following his trade. Though
Michael was naturally strong, and had all his life
been used to hardship, he could not bear the labour
to which he was set, so well as many of his com-
panions. The air of the marshes was very different
from the sea-breezes, but the principal cause of his
sinking under his toil was, his spirit was crushed.
While a man possesses a feeling of independence,
he may meet difficulties and hardships with a bold
front ; but when he feels himself to be a slave, (and
these poor people were slaves though they bore not
the name,) his energies are in most cases benumbed,
and his spirit is broken.

Margaret used to look very sad and often to weep,
when she and Gerald returned from their visits to
the works, for with the keen eye of affection she saw



CHAPTER IV. i al
A GENEROUS RESOLVE.

At the mouth of the river Neva were several little
islands ; on one of these islands the Emperor had a
hut built for himself, and a wooden house for his
favourite minister Prince Mentzikoff, who was his
companion in all his enterprises. It was Peter’s
fancy to take up his abode on that wild spot and
watch the progress of the city he had planned. On
another of these little islands a fortress was reared,
surrounded by a rampart of earth. This fortress
was the station of the engineer who directed the
works, and the home of a few of the soldiers. The
inhabitants of Moscow were at first jealous of the
new city. They foresaw that it would, in the course
of time, from its very situation, be a more de-
sirable abode for purposes of trade than the ancient
capital; and they greatly opposed the plan, lest
their dignity should decrease as well as their inte-
rests suffer ; but the Czar was not a man to yield to
any, however high their rank might be; and he
persevered with his plans without regarding the
dissatisfaction which was so generally expressed.
The houses of the new city were at first built
wholly of wood, and chiefly inhabited by foreign
artisans. Peter, seeing that the Russian nobles and
wealthy merchants would not of their own free-will
take houses in St. Petersburg, published a decree
obliging them to do so. At the same time, however,
he gave orders that the houses in the best part of the
city should be built of bricks and roofed with tiles.
He also made a law (there being no stone-quarries
in the neighbourhood) that every large vessel which



18 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. |

what he was suffering, though he said not a word.
On the contrary, when in her presence, he put on as
cheerful an aspect as possible. At such seasons
Gerald always tried to comfort her, ‘ Good mother,’
he said one day, ‘do not, I beg of you, give way so
to grief, I am sure you will have father at home
again before very long.’

‘How can that be child ? she asked. ‘ You see
the Emperor does not let any of the men give up the
work until they are carried off by death. No, there
is no hope for my poor Michael; for he will die
before this huge city is finished.’

‘Oh no, he will not die, mother,’ cried the boy,
‘I feel sure he will not die! You know you have
yourself taught me that God takes care of good
people, and I am sure father and you are good. You
have taught me, too, that God hears our prayers if
we pray to him with sincerity ; and I have prayed
very earnestly and very often that he would bring
dear father back. Courage, good mother, do not
weep ; you will have him with you again, and that
before long.’ "

We must now tell our young readers that Gerald
had formed a determination to offer himself as a sub-
stitute in Michael’s place. He made this resolution
very soon after the fisherman was taken from his
family ; but he well knew that would not be the
time to put it into practice, as he was not then
eleven years of age. He hoped however, in about
two years’ time, to be suitable in appearance as well
as one and otherwise fitted to undertake the
task.



CHAPTER V.
THE PROPOSAL.

THIS one idea was so constantly in Gerald’s mind,
that it could scarcely be said to be ever absent from
his thoughts. He dwelt on it as he sat over his work
by day ; he dreamed of it at night; and he prayed
constantly for the blessing of God upon it. Still he
said not a word to any one, being afraid that should
he do so, his plan might meet with opposition, He
feared that Margaret would say he was too young to
engage in such work.

hen a little more than two years had elapsed,
he began to think that he might make known his
plan with some hope of success. He was by this
time a fine tall lad of nearly thirteen. He thought
the most suitable season for making such a proposal
would be as he and Margaret were returning. from
one of their visits to the works. The state of health
in which they found poor Michael, at the next visit,
favoured the project. He was evidently much worn,
and Margaret was almost broken-hearted when she
parted from him, thinking it probable that she should
never see him again alive.

As they walked home, the poor woman leaned on
Gerald’s arm and wept bitterly. ‘Now,’ thought he,
‘is the time for me to name my plan ;’ so, looking
up tenderly in her face, he said, ‘I have something
to say to you, dear mother, which I -hope will make
you dry up your tears. I have often tried to cheer
you with the prospect of a happier time, but now :
think it is nearly come.’

‘You mean,’ said Margaret sorrowfully, ‘ that I
and my poor Michael shall soon be together in a
happier world.’



20 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

‘No, good mother, I don’t mean that,’ Gerald
eagerly returned, ‘I hope you will meet together in
Heaven at last ; but not very soon. Oh no, I mean
oe you will ere long be happy together in our own

ome.’

‘Neyer, never, my dear boy,’ she cried, weeping
afresh. :

“Don’t weep so, mother, but listen to what I am
going to say to you, Gerald added, and a bright
smile lighted up his intelligent face. ‘I am now a
tall, strong boy—almost as tall, and quite as strong,
I think, as dear father was when he was carried off ;
and I mean to take his place and let him come home
to you.’ |

Margaret looked up in amazement, but she did not
speak, for her feelings were too powerful to admit
of words.

‘I mean,’ Gerald proceeded, ‘to go to the Czar
myself. I hear that he is generally to be found,
either at his cottage in the island or else overlooking
the works. I am not afraid of the Czar, mother :
the errand on which I shall go will take away all
fear. I feel as bold asalion—aye, and as strong too.’

‘Thou art a noble boy, Gerald,’ cried Margaret, at
length finding utterance. ‘Go,’ she added, ‘and
may God bless thee.’

‘You consent then, good mother, you consent ?’
cried Gerald in an ecstacy of delight. ‘ My only fear
was, lest you should oppose my plan; but if you
consent, it will—it shall be done.’

‘Nay, my dear child,’ Margaret said, ‘ I am not the
only person likely to oppose your plan; the Czar
may not be willing to make the exchange.’

‘Surely he will,’ cried the boy, ‘surely this strong
limb—holding out his right arm—can do him better
service than poor father’s now weak one can do;
and gratitude and affection for one who has done so
much for me will nerve it for its work.

Gerald then begged Margaret not to, say anything



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 21

at home concerning his design, and that she would
allow him to put it into operation immediately.

He had heard that it was the Emperor Peter's con-
stant practice to rise at five in the morning, and he
determined on seeking him at that early hour, before
his attention was taken up with the businegs of the
day. There were difficulties, however, in the way of
his carrying out this purpose. The little: island on
which Peter made his homg..was a good day’s
journey from their village, ant as the only houses
built upon it were the Czar’s (which was but a mere
hut,) the prime minister’s and a sort of inn, where
Peter and his friends mostly spent their Sundays, he
was fearful lest he should not be able to get any
conveyance across the water.

Nothing daunted, by these seeming obstacles, he
resolved on setting out for the place the very next

day.



CHAPTER VI.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE PRIME MINISTER.

Leavine it to Margaret to explain to the old people
the reason for his absence, Gerald started the next
morning soon after dawn. When she saw him ready
to set out, the good woman almost repented of having
consented to his going ; still she made no attempt to
dissuade him from his purpose. She provided him
with the best food the cottage could afford, and
with tears in her eyes, bade him “God speed.” The
day was favourable, and he tripped along with a
light heart and a light step. No one, to see him,
would have imagined that he was seeking to be
placed in circumstances, at the thought of which
many stout-hearted men quailed. He did not dwell
however, on the hardships and dangers that might
await him; he only thought of how he should gladden
the spirits of those who had so long acted the part of
parents tohim. He knew that they would he grieved
to purchase their own comfort at the sacrifice of his
liberty, and it might be of his health also; but he
hoped that his youth and good constitution would
enable him to bear the toil for a time, ‘and perhaps,’
thought he, ‘I may find favour in the sight of the
Czar, and he may not doom me to spend all my best
days at such work.’

In his way to the island where the Emperor’s
humble court was kept, Gerald passed the spot where
Michael’s cottage had once stood, the spot where he
had been rescued by his kind guardian from a watery

rave. The view of this place, and the recollections
it called forth, seemed to give him new strength and
spirit for his undertaking and though wearied with
his journey, he went on even brisker than before.



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 23

Some of the fishermen’s huts were still occupied,
and Gerald stopped at one of them to inquire his way.
One of the men directed him, supposing him to be
the bearer of a message from some person in autho-
rity ; for he took the precaution to keep his plan
secret from every body, lest the telling it should
by any means mar its success.

It was nearly dark when he reached that part of
the river’s banks which faced the island, but late as
it was he resolved on trying to get over that night.
While he was standing considering what would be the
best means to adopt, three men came within sight, and
jumped into a boat which was moored hard by.
Gerald ran eagerly down to the beach, calling loudly
to attract their attention, ‘May I ask, whither are
you going my friends.’

‘ We are servants of his excellency, Prince Mentzi-
koff, and are going to his house,’ replied one of the
men.

‘ Will you row me over with you ?’ asked Gerald,
at the same time holding out a small coin.

‘Have you any business with his excellency ?
inquired one.

‘My business is with the Czar, but I should be
glad to see Prince Mentzikoff first, if I could get
admittance to him,’ Gerald replied.

‘ What is your business with the Czar ?’ demanded
another.

‘I have a favour to ask of him.’

‘If that’s the case, you cannot do better than get
his excellency to introduce you,’ rejoined the first
speaker ; ‘come hasten into the boat, we must not
tarry, or we shall be put into too hot an oven, and
so repent of it.’

This speech of the man’s had reference to the
prime minister’s origin. Mentzikoff was, when a
boy, in the service of a pastry-cook at Moscow, and
he first attracted the attention of the Emperor by



24 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

the humorous manner in which he sang a song ex-
tolling his master’s pies. Peter offered him*a menial
office in his household, but afterwards discovering
that he had a genius for military affairs, he placed
him in his army, where he rose rapidly. This young
man was one of the Czar’s companions on his journey
to Holland and England. ‘



As the men rowed the boat across the river, one
commenced a song, and the others joined in chorus.
The Russian people are noted for their love of music,
and they generally lighten their labours by singing.

On reaching the island, they conducted our hero
at once to the house of the minister.

The house of Prince Mentzikoff was very superior
to the one occupied by his sovereign, for Peter took
pride in demeaning himself when he was in the mood



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 25

to do so; still it was but a rude affair, as our young
readers will no doubt think when they hear it
described.

It consisted of a number of wooden beams, so pre-
pared as to fit readily into each other. Lattices and
shutters. for windows were also made to fit in, and
these detached pieces could be packed up and carried
to any place that the owner chose to reside in. Most
of the houses in the towns and cities of Russia were,
at that time, so constructed ; and ready-made houses
were common articles of merchandise in the public
markets. The furniture of these dwellings was as
rough and portable as the outside ; a few shelves and
some wooden benches were fixed to the walls, and
a few tables were added. The benches served for bed-
steads as well as for seats, and when these houses were
put up in the country, it was seldom that they afforded
the luxury of a bed.
little ceremony was used at that period, especially
in such a retired place, and Gerald was introduced at
once into the presence of the Prince. Menztikoff was
seated on one,of the benches, having a table before
him, on which stood a bottle of spirits and a large
horncup. He had evidently been drinking rather too
freely, which bad practice, though sanctioned by the
example of the Czar, and the custom of the country,
was a new spectacle'to our hero, who had always been
accustomed to see sobriety in his humble home.

‘What is your business with me? the Prince
somewhat roughly demanded as Gerald advanced.

‘Will your excellency do me the favour of intro-
ducing me to the Czar before he leaves the island in
the morning,’ Gerald said, at the same time making
a low bow.

‘For what purpose do you wish to be introduced
to his Majesty ?? Menzikoff abruptly asked.

‘ Please your excellency, I have a favour to request. :

‘What, boor ? Dost thou think to enter the Czar’s



26 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

service ? Thou art a dainty lad for thy station, but
thou’rt not quite to his mind I fancy.’

‘I do wish to enter the Czar’s service,’ Gerald
replied ; ‘my request is that he will let me labour
on the public works.’

The minister looked up as if doubting whether he
heard aright :—‘ Art thou in earnest, boy,’ he de-
manded, ‘ or art thou jesting with me ?

‘I would not take the liberty to jest with your
excellency,’ Gerald replied: ‘indeed my errand is
not a matter for jest. I am in earnest. I wish
to take the place of a man who has been more than
a father to me.’

‘Ha

‘One Michael Kopt, once a fisherman on the Neva,
has been upwards of two years upon the works, but
his strength is failing, he can now be but of little
use to his Majesty, and I have a strong arm.’

‘Come hither at the dawn of day,’ said the Prince.

Gerald again bowed, and was about to leave the
room, when Mentzikoff calling after him said, ‘ Bid
my servants find thee a lodging and a meal,’ and
added, ‘come hither at the dawn, I’ll take thee to
the Czar myself.” Here he turned aside to re-fill the
horn cup and quaff off another draught of spirits.



CHAPTER VII.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE CZAR.

GERALD was true to his appointment, and he found
the Prince prepared to receive him. But few words
were exchanged ; Mentzikoff beckoned him to follow,
and they proceeded together to the Ozar’s hut. It
is an odd fancy for an Emperor to live in such a
place when he might live in a grand palace, thought
our hero ; however, he wisely kept his thoughts té
himself.

Peter had been put out of temper the night before,
by meeting with some trifling opposition to his
wishes and plans; and the minister, though a very
great favourite with his sovereign, was not quite
sure that even he could get a hearing at that time.
He had taken a fancy to Gerald, however, and he
was determined to do all he could to serve him.
Bidding him, therefore, wait without till he called
or sent to him, Mentzikoff entered the Czar’s hut
alone.

Peter was up as usual and busy with his plans for
the new city. The Prince did not, therefore, at once
state the object of his early visit, but quietly listened
to all his sovereign had to say. After a while, how-
ever, he ventured to lay the business before him.

The Emperor’s brow darkened and became more
and more contracted as the Prince proceeded. ‘ What
were the boors made for but to serve their country
in that way ?” he fiercely asked.

‘True, Sire ;? returned the Prince, ‘ but this poor
man is it appears unable to serve his country by
manual labour any longer, and as the youth is so



28 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

desirous of taking his place the exchange will be for
your Majesty’s benefit.

‘Bring him hither,’ was the Czar’s abrupt re-
joinder.’

Gerald was the next minute ushered. into the
presence of the Emperor.

‘ Come here, boy,’ he cried in a loud stern voice.

Gerald obeyed, but without shewing any signs of
alarm. —

‘Thou’rt not Russian ?’ the Czar added, surveying
his person with a scrutinizing glance.

‘I know not to what country I belong, Sire,’ the
youth replied ; ‘I was shipwrecked on the coast
hard by, and I owe my life and everything else I
possess to Michael Kopt.’

‘And who is Michael Kopt ?’ -

‘Sire, Michael Kopt is the man whose place in the
public works I wish to fill.’

‘Thou art of too slight a make for such work,
boy,’ cried the Czar.

‘Nay, I have a stronger arm than I may seem to
have, Sire; and if anything can nerve it for the
work surely gratitude will do so.’

‘By what name art thou called ? denianded the
Emperor.

‘My name is Gerald, Sire.’

‘And how many years ago was it that thou wert
shipwrecked on these shores ?”

‘It was a little more than twelve years ago, Sire,
I was then an infant of only a few months old.’

‘And you have never heard anything of your
parents or friends ?”

‘Never, Sire. The river was at that time begin-
ning to overflow its banks, and I have reason to
believe that I was the only person who escaped the
wreck.’

_ The Czar mused for a few moments, then snatching



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 29

up a piece of parchment from the table before him,
he wrote a few words upon it, and gave it into the
hand of the minister.

‘Give the boy that, Mentzikoff,’ he said ; ‘let him
present it to the master of the works, and his re-
quest will be promptly attended to.’

The Prince handed the parchment to Gerald who
took it with a countenance radiant with delight.
He could not speak, but making a low obeisance first
to the Czar and then to the minister, he withdrew
from the royal presence.

As may be supposed, our hero lost no time in re-
turning to the cottage with the joyful news of his
success. But much as they all loved Michael, Mar-
garet and the old people could scarcely rejoice in
the thought of his restoration to his home when his
liberty was to be purchased at such acost. To the
grateful boy, however, every task seemed light, and
even his humiliation appeared honourable. Nor was
this a delusive idea, for the most laborious employ-
ment derives dignity from a noble motive.

The different circumstances under which Michael
and Gerald commenced the same task made a wide
difference in their feelings when engaged in it. With
the former it was compulsory, with the latter it was
voluntary. Michael felt himself to be the ae
servant of a tyrannical master. Gerald overlooke
the fact of working for the emperor in the anima-
ting idea that he was conferring a benefit on those
who had done so much for him. He had more-
over the delightful consciousness that his sacrifice
of self met with the smile of his Father in Heaven.
Nor did Gerald repent of the noble sacrifice he had
made, when the first excitement was over, and he
came to endure the severe, and in some instances,
unexpected hardships it had brought upon him. He
not only commenced his work cheerfully, but con-



30 THE FOUNDIING OF THE WREOK.

tinued to pursue it with the same happy spirit. His
joy and thankfulness were unbounded when he
received intelligence that Michael was gradually
recovering his health under Margaret’s careful
nursing. At length the good woman herself came
to visit him, bringing the news that her husband
was now s0 nearly restored that he hoped to be able to
walk as far himself ere long. Gerald thought, how-
ever, that it would not be wise for him to come,
lest it being known that he was again capable of
labour, he should be pressed a second time into the
service, and his fears were not without foundation ;
for where there is a despotic government, the hum-
bler classes of the people are looked upon as little
better than machines, made for the sole purpose of
executing the plans of those in power.



CHAPTER VIII.

A GREAT AND UNEXPECTED CHANGE—OUR HERO IN
MOSCOW.

Wen Gerald had been about'six months at his new
employment, to his great surprise he was one morning
told by an inspector of the works, that an order had
just come from the Emperor signifying that he was
to be sent immediately to Moscow.

This intelligence created a little alarm in the
breast of the youth, for he could only suppose that
he was suspected of having committed some offence.
Conscious, however, of having discharged his ap-
pointed duties with faithfulness, he asked the officer
whether he were sure that he was the person men-
tioned in the royal letter.

‘The person signified is called by the name of
Gerald’ Kopt. His person is described, and the
description answers exactly to you.’

‘I am called by the name of Gerald Kopt,’ the
youth replied, ‘and if the Czar commands me to go
of course I must obey. Indeed I have no objection
to going. But should my mother come here and
miss me, who will let her know whither I am gone ?’

“TI will engage that your mother shall be told all
that we know concerning you,’ replied the officer.

‘Many thanks for that kindness,’ cried Gerald,
looking gratefully in the man’s face, ‘ I am now ready
to attend the Czar’s orders.’ |

Could Gerald have divested himself of the idea
that he might be going as a culprit to be tried for
an unknown offence, he would have been delighted
with the journey, for he had long had a strong
desire to see morc of the world.



32 THE FOUNDING OF THE WRECK.

The distance from St. Petersburg to Moscow,
which is upwards of four hundred miles, was a
formidable journey in a country where the roads
were bad, and there were very few inns. At a sub-
sequent period the Emperor Peter had gond roads
made between the large towns, and inns and posting-
houses were built upon them. Canals were also dug
to connect the great rivers, and there were many in-
provements of a similar kind ; but these things were
the work of considerable time. Some of them were
only just commenced at the period of which we are
speaking.

On their way to Moscow the party passed through
the town of Novogorod, the seat of the earliest
government, and afterwards so noted as a republic.
Gerald was greatly pleased that he had an opportunity
of visiting this lace. for Michael and his father-in-
law had told him something of its ancient history.
How about the middle of the ninth century, Rusic,
a Norman pirate chief, when cruising about the
Baltic with his followers had sailed down rivers and
through lakes till they came to this city, which was
then a mere cluster of wooden huts inhabited by
barbarians, and how the Norman had made himself
master of the place, assumed the title of Grand
Duke, and laid the foundation of the present powerful
and extensive empire of Russia.* Many legendary
tales were told of the adventures of these wild
Normans, and most of these adventures were asso-
ciated with the city.

On reaching Moscow our hero was so interested
in the place.as to forget the painful circumstances
under which he was visiting it. The city was at that

* Igov, the son of Rusic, afterwards made Kirow the
capital of the country ; but Novogorod was for a considerable
time a place of importance, and the chief city of a republican
state.



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 33

period enclosed with three walls ; one built of brick,
surrounded that portion called the Kremlin, where
the Czar’s palace and the residences of the chief of
the nobility stood ; another built of stone, took in
a larger extent of the city; anda third formed of
wood, enclosed the suburbs. On the banks of the
river Moskwa, which runs through the city, were a
number of wooden hits, the public baths. These
baths were constantly frequented by the inhabitants,
as bathing was at that time a religious ceremony
amongst the Russian people. The poorest classes
— failed to attend the baths at least once in the
week,

It was Palm: Sunday when Gerald and his con-
panions arrived, the place was consequently in a
state of universal excitement. The bells too were
ringing merrily. Moscow was famous for the size
and number of its bells. To present a large bell to
a church was considered by some a very pious act,
therefore almost every new sovereign had a bell cast
larger than that which had been given to the city
by his predecessor.* Palm Sunday was a day on
which a very, grand festival was always held. The
religion generally professed in Russia is according to
the Greek Church, which is very similar to the
Roman Catholic religion. At that time the church
was governed by persons called Patriarchs, who
were something like the Popes. The Patriarch
lived in Moscow, ina palace adjoining that of the
Emperor where he kept a court, and lived in as much
state as the Czar himself.

On the festival of Palm Sunday the emperor
always walked to church, gorgeously arrayed in a

* The Empress Anne, the daughter of Ivan, who reigned
soon after Peter’s death, presented a bell to the city of Moscow
which weighs 432,000 pounds, and is the largest bell in the
world.



34 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

dress made of cloth of gold, two princes holding up
his train. He was followed by a grand foot pro-
cession consisting of the whole court splendidly
attired. Behind the nobles were a number of the
chief citizens and lawyers, each having a branch of
willow, to represent palm, in his hand, and beyond
these were the guards of the palace. In this pro-
cession the Patriarch always rode beside the Em-
peror, who held the bridle of his horse, and he was
the only person mounted, excepting the guards.

Our hero and his companions met the proces-
sion as it was just leaving the palace, and they
stood for a while to watch it pass. Gerald’s asso-
ciates were delighted at having arrived in time to
witness it, and Gerald was himself pleased with the
sight, for he had never seen anything of the kind
before. But looking on it as a religious festival he
could not help feeling pained. These men he knew
were about to fall before images and offer up prayers
to saints and angels, and they would afterwards
spend the sacred hours of the Sabbath in feasting
and drinking ; for no religious festivals were at that
time held in Russia without feasting and drinking
to excess. Happily for our young hero he had been
taught a purer faith. The Bible, Michael’s best in-
heritance from his father, had not been made such
poor use of, as to allow Gerald to imbibe the super-
stitions, and. practice the foolish ceremonies of the
Russians.



CHAPTER IX.
‘OUR HERO AT THE COURT OF PETER THE GREAT.

On entering the palace Gerald was at once taken to
a comfortable apartment, and supplied with refresh-
ment.. ‘Surely,’ thought he, ‘the Czar has some
kind intentions respecting me, or he would not give
orders that I should be treated in this manner ;’ and
he was much relieved by this thought. Having
finished his meal, he was conducted by a domestic or
slave (for all the domestics in Russia were slaves) to
one of the baths prepared for the household, and
then to a wardrobe, from whence a handsome robe
was given him to put on in the place of his sheepskin
garments. He was further told that he would most
likely be summoned to attend on the Emperor in the
evening.

The robe in which Gerald was arrayed was of dark
green cloth, trimmed with fur. It was loose and
flowing, only confined round the waist by a leathern
girdle, in the manner of the dresses of the east. This
kind of dress was in fashion in Russia at that time,
though Peter afterwards, with some difficulty in-
duced the Russian nobles and citizens to give it up,
and adopt the costumes of England and France.

The change was certainly a great improvement to
our hero’s appearance ; and he began to wonder
what all this would lead to.

With evening the expected summons came, and
Gerald was conducted by a superior officer of the
household to the royal presence. The Emperor was
not now,.as when our hero first saw him seated ona
rude bench, but on a throne of state. He did not
wear the gorgeous robe in which he had attended



36 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK,

the church in the morning, for that was held sacred
to the occasion, but he was dressed in one equally
splendid. A number of nobles and ladies elegantly
attired, stood on either side of the throne, and the
blaze of light which was thrown upon the company
by means of the brilliant chandeliers, gave the whole
scene a dazzling aspect.

The Czar and his suite were greatly amused at
observing the wonder and admiration which marked
the expressive countenance of the youth, as he entered
the grand saloon. Gerald’s thoughts, were not how-
ever, long so occupied, he was too much interested in
ascertaining the object of his summons there.

‘Ha! my lad,’ exclaimed the Czar, in a familiar
tone, as Gerald bowed low before the throne, ‘ I’ve
not forgotten you, you see. Well, how did you get
on at your new Work?

‘I hope, Sire, ’ Gerald replied with modest dignity,
‘I hope, Sire, I did my ‘duty, and to the satisfaction
of your Majesty’ s officers.’

-‘ I’ve heard nothing to the contrary, at all events,’
said the Czar, ‘ but what say you to leaving off that
sort of work, ‘and taking to something else? Have
you become so fond of it that you desire to end your
days at it.’

Gerald could not help smiling at this question.
‘Nay, Sire,’ he replied, ‘I did my work cheerfully,
because I felt it to be my duty to do ‘so, and I had
moreover, an animating motive, but I should rejoice
to be engaged i in some employment: better suited to
my taste.’

‘What employment would be suited to yopr taste
the Emperor asked. ‘ Would you like to bea soldier?’

‘A soldier’s profession. ould not be quite suited
to my taste, Sire,’ Gerald % plied.

“Why ? it is thought to be the most honourable
calling by many of my subjects. I am a soldier,
myself, but I wish not to put a restraint on your



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 37

inelination—nay, should you prefer following some
useful art, I would give you all encouragement. My
nobles here know that I patronise the useful arts,
and have set them.an example by working at some
of them myself.’

‘ My inclination, Sire, has always been to pursue a
studious life,” Gerald ventured to say.

‘Ha!’ exclaimed the Czar, ‘I am now founding
a university in Moscow, would you like to enter it ?’

‘That is what I desire above all things, Sire,’ Gerald
replied with great earnestness.

‘Your desire shall be gratified then,’ cried the
Emperor, ‘I wish to serve you, but I had another
object in bringing you here. ‘I took. notice of the
account you gave me at our former meeting of your
singular deliverance from shipwreck, and I think I
have some clue to the discovery of your family.’

Gerald looked up more earnestly than ever. ‘To
enable me to discover my kindred, would indeed,
Sire, be conferring on me a favour beyond any other,’
he exclaimed with great energy.

‘Can you write ?”

‘Yes, Sire,’ I can write, though but indifferently.

My good father, Michael Kopt, taught me to write
to the best of his ability.’
. *Good—make out a clear statement then of all
you know concerning your earlier history, in writing
—hbe very particular as to dates, and send the docu-
ment to me. You may withdraw now. My servants
will attend to your comfort and provide you with
anything you ask for.’

‘Oh ! Sire,’ exclaimed the youth, bursting into a
flood of tears, ‘I can find no words to express my
gratitude. But my heart thanks you a thousand-
fold.’ : | ot ee

Peter was naturally a stern man, and not easily
moved, but he could not witness the youth’s emotions
without feeling something like a response.



38 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

Gerald still lingered at the foot of the throne.
‘Will your Majesty pardon me if I ask the addition
of one favour more,’ he at length said, ‘it is, that
I may be permitted to send a messenger to my friends
to let them know that I am here safe under your
Majesty’s gracious protection.’

‘Aye, if that will afford you pleasure,’ returned
the emperor, smiling, and he waved his hand in
token of an adieu, |



CHAPTER X.
A HAPPY DISCOVERY.

Tae slave who waited on Gerald, told him that he
had orders from the Czar to take him to any part of
the palace and grounds he might wish to see. He
was told also, that if he would like to see the city, and
the public buildings, he should have an escort from
the Emperor’s own guards. :

Our hero gladly availed himself of these offers,
and thus spent several days very pleasantly. He
previously, however, complied with the Czar’s re-
quest regarding the particulars of his early life.

It was but little that he knew of the matter ; but
that little he stated with great clearness, both as
respected time and place. Nor did he fail to avail
himself of the license given him by the Czar to send
to his friends. He wrote a brief account of all that
had passed since his removal, and cheered them with
hopes of ere long seeing them again uhder happier
circumstances than when they had parted last.

Gerald had been at the palace about a week,
when he received a message from the Emperor,
bidding him prepare himself for an interview with a
lady who, he said, had taken a great interest in his
story. The officer who delivered the message further
informed him that the lady, whose name was Madame
Koski, was the widow of a Polish noble who had
been personally attached to the Czar; and that
having lost her property in Poland, she was now
living on a pension which was allowed her by the
Emperor. |
‘ Qur hero listened to these particulars with great



40° THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

eagerness ; for he could not help thinking that this
lady was in some way connected with his family, and
that her interest for him was owing to that circum-
stance. :

‘It is possible,’ he said to himself, ‘that I am of
Polish origin ;’ his cheek grew flushed and his eye
kindled at the thought. He had occasionally heard
portions of the history of that brave and interesting
people ; and from some cause which he could not
quite account for himself, he felt deeply concerned
in all that related to them. The Emperor of Russia
and the renowned King of Sweden, Charles XII., had
long been contending for power over the Poles; and
the principal question relating to that unhappy
country seemed to be, which of the two should be
their master.

At one time the Czar gained the ascendancy for
the King of Poland, Frederick Augustus, who was
also Elector of Saxony, was his friend and ally.
Again Charles XII. became the superior in power,
and Frederick Augustus was then obliged to abdi-
cate the throne of Poland and retire to Saxony, and
Stanislaus Leczinski was chosen in his room—a
measure which gave no satisfaction to the declining
nation.

Gerald awaited the arrival of Madame Koski with
intense anxiety. At length the door of the apart-
ment was slowly opened, and a lady dressed in the
Polish fashion appeared, leaning on the arm of a
female domestic. She glanced hurriedly at Gerald,
who immediately rose and bowed. She then motioned
with her hand for the attendant to withdraw, and
entered the room alone. |

Madame Koski was still in the meridian of life ;
but ill-health and deep grief had whitened her hair
and left such marks upon her countenance that she
had the appearance of being rather advanced in
years. She entered the room with a trembling step,



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 41

ay sunk into the seat which Gerald politely offered
er.

‘Your name,’ she said with great effort, looking
very earnestly in his face.

‘My name, Madame, is Gerald,’ he replied ; ‘ but
I am called Gerald Kopt, from one Michael Kopt,
who has been to me as a father.’

As the youth spoke, the lady became still more
agitated. ‘It must be so—I cannot be deceived,’
she murmured ; ‘ that brow—those eyes—the voice
—so like my own, own Gerald—you are—you must
be my child.’ Here she threw her arms round the
boy’s neck, and burst into a flood of tears.

‘Did I hear aright? Did you say you are my
mother ?? exclaimed Gerald, disengaging himself a
little from her embrace, that he might look up in
her countenance to read her answer even before
her tongue could speak it.

“I am,’ she answered in a calmer tone ; ‘I lost an
infant on the coast of Russia at the very time stated
_ your document ; and my heart tells me you must

e he.’

‘This is happiness beyond anything I could have
expected,’ cried Gerald, warmly returning her em-
brace. ‘I never hoped to find a mother living.’

‘And I never hoped to find my long-lost child,’
replied the lady ; ‘but God is good, and his ways
are wonderful.’

‘God has indeed been good to me, my mother,’
Gerald responded, now twining his arm fondly round
her neck ; ‘he provided me with friends who have
been as parents to me, and he has by a wonderful
provid ce, brought me here. But tell me dear
ady: mother,’ he added, his countenance
lighting up with great animation—‘ tell me ; is it
true that 1 am by birth a Pole? -

‘You are,’ Madame Koski replied ; ‘your father
was a Pole of noble birth.’ ‘



42 THH FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

‘IT have learned to call those great and noble who
perform great and noble actions, dear lady,’ cried
Gerald. ‘ But I do rejoice in hearing that I belong
to that brave and patriotic land.’

‘Ours is a fallen country,’ said the Jady despond-
ingly. ‘As for myself, she added, ‘I am obliged
to live on the bounty of the man who is desirous of
holding my country in a state of thraldum; but
the circumstances which led to it are these :—Your
father and the Czar met in early youth, and your
father had then an opportunity of rendering the
Emperor an essential service, which was repaid by
an act of equal generosity. Thus they were bound
together by ties of gratitude.’

‘Ah! and the ties of gratitude are strong,’ Gerald
warmly interposed.

‘They are, my son,’ said the lady. ‘Many years
after, when Peter of Russia and Charles of Sweden
first contended for mastery over our fallen country,
your father and the Czar met once more. Your
father was then a prisoner in Peter’s camp, and I
and my three children were without a home. Under
these circumstances, the Czar contrived to get our
children on board one of his ships, which was then
about to sail up the Baltic. I purposed joining
them ; but an accident preventing, the ship set sail
without me; and the children were only under the
care of a female slave who was their nurse. The
next tidings I heard was, that the vessel had been
wrecked, and that every one on board had perished.’

Madame Koski wept as she related these par-
ticulars ; nor could Gerald listen to them without
shedding tears also. ‘Then what became of my
father ? he asked, with breathless interest. —

‘Phe Ozar generously gave him his liberty.
Your father,’ she continued, ‘was one of those patriots
who did not take part with either the Swedes or
the Russians ; but who nobly stood out for Polish



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 43

independence and the right of electing a king
for ourselves. This being the case, he fared ill
when Charles of Sweden got the mastery ; and he
would have.done the same when Peter of Russia had
the supreme power, but for the private friendship
which I told you existed between him and the Czar.
He fell at last, however,’ and as she ceased, the lady
buried her face in her hands and wept afresh.

‘He fell in the defence of his country,’ asked
Gerald.

‘He did, dear boy.’

‘I have told the Czar that I am desirous of pur-
suing a studious life, and he has offered to place me
in the University he has recently founded in this
city. But your tale, dear mother,’ added Gerald,
‘has stirred feelings within me, which I scarcely
knew that I possessed. Surely it would be ignoble
for me to live at ease in an enemy’s land, when my
own requires my services.’

‘TI should have thought as you do, at one time,
my son,’ replied the lady; ‘but now I view the
matter otherwise. Though there are many gallant
spirits still in Poland, the power of our conquerors
is too great for us. Nothing can be done for our
unhappy country now, her freedom is entirely lost.’



CHAPTER XI.
CONCLUSION.

Mapame Kosxi, now proceeded to question Gerald
regarding his humble friends, the fisherman and his
wife, and nothing loth was he to talk of them, and of
their kindness to him. She listened with great
interest to his account of Michael’s being carried off
to the public works, and of his interview with the
Ozar, to plead for the exchange. She had heard
nothing of these particulars—she had only been told
that a youth who had been shipwrecked when an
infant, near the mouth of the Neva, was then, at the
Emperor’ s palace, and on her arrival, the paper which
Gerald had written out had been put into her hand.
Peter, on first seeing him, had himself been struck
with the resemblance he bore to his early friend, and
when Gerald proceeded to give the account of the
wreck, he immediately surmised that the son of the
Polish noble stood before him.

Though Peter was a man of fierce passions, and
had little feeling, he was known to attach himself
firmly to a few individuals. Madame Koski and her
son, therefore felt some confidence in the continuance
of his fe iendship and protection.

Gerald at last came to a determination to enter
the University, though his own inclination would now
have led him to go to his native land, and make a
stand with the few brave men who would have joined
him in another struggle fr independence. Indeed, he
did not wholly relinquish the idea, though he resolved
at present on making the most of the advantages
offered him for education, .

Previous, to his entering, however, he and his



THE FOUNDING OF THE WRECK. 45

mother took a journey to the village in which Michael
and his wife were residing. Madame Koski was
anxious to see the worthy couple who had acted so
kindly to her son, that she might have an opportu-
nity of expressing her deep gratitude, and she and
Gerald were both desirous of ascertaining whether
they could do anything to make the family more
comfortable.



The meeting was affecting, and it gave mutual
pleasure, Madame Koski was much pleased with
the fisherman’s family, especially with Margaret,
towards whom she thought she could never show
sufficient kindness in return for the motherly part
she had acted towards her friendless infant. The good
woman brought forward the clothes in which Gerald



AG THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

was dressed when he was first cast upon their pro-
tecting care. And if any further proof of his identity
had been needful, the sight of them would have quite
satisfied Madame Koski that he was indeed her
child. The view of the clothes, however, called forth
many painful recollections, for though Gerald was
restored to her, her two other children, who had
been equally dear were lost. She was affected too
when told of the careful manner in which the babe’s
little ark had been enclosed, in order to shelter him
from the waters. ‘Poor Jaqueline,’ she said, with
tears in her eyes, ‘you were faithful to your charge
to the very last. ‘Oh! she added, turning to her
son, ‘what a wonderful providence has followed thee,
my child, from the moment I parted from thee,
thou has never wanted a mother’s tender care.’

Madame Koski was a christian woman. She had
been taught in the rough school of adversity, and
she had learned, not only to submit with patience
to the ills of life, but to see God’s gracious and
merciful hand in all.

Madame Koski’s income was not very large, still
she insisted on sharing it with Michael and his wife,
who really stood in need of aid, though they were
unwilling to receive it from her. The good couple
had done all without any hope or prospect of reward,
but they both repeatedly declared that Gerald had
already more than repaid them for the services they
had rendered him by the generous sacrifice he had
made, which had, they said, been the means of
saving Michael’s life.

Gerald returned with his mother to Moscow, and
then commenced his studiesgwith a cheerful spirit.
He lived to be a comfort to his widowed parent, and
an ornament to society ; but he never had an oppor-
tunity of serving his country beyond what he could
do as a private individual.

Within two or three years of the time when the



THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 47

above related events took place, Peter the Great
once more gained ascendancy over the Poles, by a
victory he won over his rival Charles the Twelfth.
In consequence of this victory, Stanislaus was de-
posed and Frederick Augustus was restored to the
throne.

Most of our young readers are no doubt aware
that Poland is no longer a kingdom, but a Russian
province. Subsequently to the period of which we
have been speaking, the fall of the Polish nation
was rapid, and their final overthrow took place about
twenty years ago, under Nicholas, the present Em-
peror of Russia.

It now remains for us, young readers, to in-
quire what moral may be learned from the little
history before us. Every book we read should do
something more than amuse the fancy and interest
the feelings. It should inform our minds and teach
us some valuable lesson for practice. We have seen
that our hero’s generous action was made in the
Providence of God to lead to its own reward. Had
he not sought an interview with the Czar he would
not have discovered his mother. Again we may
observe, that circumstances do not affect the con-
duct of individuals so as to prevent the possi-
bility of their performing noble deeds. The fisher-
man and his wife practised generosity and kindness
of the highest order, lowly and poor though they
were ; and the seemingly disadvantageous situation
of the boy who was cast upon their bounty did not
prevent his achieving a truly heroic action. Think
not, therefore, that your circumstances, whatever
they may be, shut you out from the exercise of
exalted virtues, for there are no circumstances,
however unfavourable, which exclude the perform-
ance of generous and self-denying deeds,





hwy

LONDON:
RICHARD BARRETT, PRINTER, MARK LANE.



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Explaining the Motto. 7 _ Page 19.
Second Series.

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IN SCHOOL AND OUT OF SCHOOL.

cHAPTER L

IN SCHOOL.

THE young people of the little village of Stapleford
were looking forward with anxious expectation to
the first of September. It was the day fixed for the
examination of the girls in the village school, after
which the prizes were to be delivered which had
been promised by Mr. Brookbanks, the rector, and
the Miss Shirleys, who lived up at the Hall, and who
took a great interest in the school. There was to
be a prize given to the best. reader, the best writer,
the neatest worker, and to; Mer who had always
atterided school during the past year most regularly
and punctually. The mistress of the school, Mrs.
Presgrove, of course kept a register of the attend-
ance of all the scholars each day, so that matter
could be easily settled ; but the other prizes were
to be given in accordance with the manner in
which they acquitted themselves on the day of
examination. Almost every day after school was
over, and Mrs. Presgrove had dismissed the classes,
did the girls saunter home talking about: the prizes,
and the nearer they got to the examination day, the
more anxious they all felt about it. Younger sisters
who had no hope of a prize, were anxious about their
elder sisters, and those who thought they had a
chance calculated that chance over again and again
in their own minds, and did their best to find out


6 IN SCHOOL

what were the opinions of the rest regarding it. As
the summer wore away however, it almost seemed
as if some of the doubt and suspense was set aside
by the general feeling with respect to a girl named
Phoebe Gibbons. It was impossible not to see that
she had a better chance than any ones indeed there
were some even who thought that she would carry
off all the prizes that were to be given, so wonder-
fully did she exert herselfygmd so very evident was
her improvement. ‘The Migs Shirleys could not but
take great notice of Phoebe in their visits to the
school, and Mrs. Presgrove, however she might pride
herself on not having favourites, could not help
showing how very proud she was of Phoebe. She
did not always appeal to Phoebe every time she
wanted an answer to a question, because she wished
to maké others in the class give her an answer ; but
after two or three wrong replies were given, or when
she was tired of appealing to the rest, her eye would
turn to Phoebe with as much confidence in getting
the right answer, as if she were to read it from a
book. Each morning, too, when the time came for
unlocking and setting open the school-room door,
Mrs.:Presgrove would put her head out, and be sure
to see Phoebe within a few yards of the gate, with
her bag on her arm, and perhaps a book in her hand,
out of which she was conning a lesson. Her twin
sister Ruth was often with her, but occasionally
Ruth would not make her appearance for quite ten
minutes after, which was not to be wondered at, for
Ruth was decidedly slow in all her movements.
There might have been some among her school-
fellows a little envious of Phoebe’s great success in
all that she attempted, but she was too good-natured
a girl herself for any very unkind feelings to be
harboured against her; and if some of the girls of
her own age were occasionally discouraged by the
superiority she showed, they could not help feeling
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 7

at the same time proud of having such a clever girl
in the school, and found the convenience of having
some one always at hand who could help them over
their difficulties, or explain what puzzled them when
they could not apply to Mrs. Presgrove. Mrs. Pres-
grove herself used to call Phoebe her second right
hand—and so she really was ;‘always so bustling
and active in school—keeping up the spirit of all
the classes to which she belonged, and always ready
to teach a class of little ones when Mrs. Presgrove
was particularly busy cutting out work, or finishing-
off some that was to be sent home.

Phoebe and Ruth Gibbons were the daughters of
very respectable parents in Stapleford. Their cot-
tage was the very last in the village before you came
to where the palings of Shirley Park began, and the
garden which lay behind it on the hill-side was also
theirs. Their father was a nursery-man and florist,
so that at all times and seasons there were square
patches of some bright-coloured flowers or other to
be seen on that sloping garden, and unusually choice
creepers and climbers about the windows and porch
of the cottage. The boundary of the garden at the
top was part of the pine and fir plantation which
skirted Shirley Park, and by shutting out the cold
@vinds from the flower-beds, was considered to be one
of the causes for Andrew Gibbons’ succeeding so well
with the more delicate kinds of herbaceous plants,
though his industry and good knowledge of gardening
had of course much to do with it. To look at the
Gibbons’ cottage, one would almost fancy them to be
better off than any of their neighbours, so neat and
comfortable was the air of the place, but the rent of
their house and garden was high, and the profit from
the sale of plants and the produce of their fruit-trees
was uncertain ; besides which, Andrew Gibbons had
built his greenhouse and forcing-frames with bor-
rowed money, for which he had to pay high interest
8 IN SCHOOL

until he could manage to pay it off by instalments.
Still, as he said, he could see his way very clearly,
and as soon as his girls were able to maintain them-
selves, all would go well. In the meantime, however,
he was ready to make every sacrifice for the sake of
their getting a good education. Phoebe might, a
year before the time we write of, have had a place
at a neighbouring farm-house, but her father and
mother could not bear the thought of taking her
‘away from her book,’ especially as she was inaking
such very satisfactory progress, and they willingly
made the necessary sacrifice for the schooling and
maintenance of both the girls for yet another year,
seeing, as they said, the wonderful start Phoebe was ©
making, and considering that Ruth was somewhat
backward. SBoth father and mother were thrifty
and industrious, and the former, who was a Scotch- |
man by birth, set a high value on education. Re-
ports of Phoebe’s reputation at school were most
gratifying to them, and they, too, looked forward
with no little interest to the display which would be
made of her ‘ forwardness’ on the important exami-
nation day.

The summer wore on, and nothing interfered with
the general expectation of Phcebe’s success. Thex
most that any of her companions could hope for wasya
that one out of the four prizes to be given might fall”
to their lot ; and their mistress, Mrs. Presgrove, had
difficulty in keeping up their zeal in those matters
where after all, the proficiency of the whole school
was to her of more importance than the excellence of
one pupil. She said a great deal to the girls about
none of their efforts being lost, even if they did not
secure a prize; and she reminded the more timid
ones, who were sure of not being seen to advantage
in anything like a public examination, that the
feeling that we have done our best, is the next best ©
thing to the satisfaction of gaining a prize. Among



AND OUT OF SCHOOL. vd

these timid ones was Ruth Gibbons, Phoebe’s sister.
The two sisters were so different in this respect, that
they could hardly understand each other’s feelings.

‘How could you be so stupid, Ruth,’ said Phcebe
one day, as they returned home, after having been
questioned by one of the Miss Shirleys about the
different countries of Europe, and asked the names
of their capitals ; ‘how couid you say that Portugal
was the capital of Spain? I am sure you knew
better.’

‘Oh, yes, I really did know better; but I was so
flurried by Miss Louisa’s taking the class instead of
Mrs. Presgrove. It made me so frightened that I
did not know what I was saying.’

‘How strange of you, Ruth. Why, that was the
very thing that made me so particular in giving
right answers. I should have been so ashamed of
making a blunder before Miss Louisa.’ |

‘Ah, you! Phoebe—but you’re so different from
me,’ said Ruth in a humble tone of voice. |

Among other things which were preparing for
the examination day, was the recitation of some
hittle poems and hymns, and Miss Louisa Shirley
had taken the greatest pains with the girls to get
these nicely learned and well delivered. She was
very particular about the accent and tone of the
girls as they repeated poetry, and she had taken
care that they learned nothing which they did not
understand. Nothing was to be jabbered or gabbied,
and to prevent this, she taught the girls to repeat
the verses after her without seeing them in a book,
so that they got right sound and right sense from
the very first. Now, even in this Phoebe Gibbons
showed a greater quickness than all the other girls
in Miss Louisa’s class. She liked poetry, and she
recited it in a pleasant tone, and with a correct
accent, as if she fe/t it all. It was really a pleasure
to hear her repeat, amongst other things the beau-
tiful lines beginning “‘ Prayer is the soul’s sincere
10 IN SCHOOL

desire ;’? and she could go though all the verses of
the poem without her memory once failing her.

After taking so much pains with the girls as Miss
Louisa Shirley had done, it was no wonder that she
was proud of her success with Phoebe. Her sister
Gertrude was in delicate health, and could not often
get down to see what was going on at the school-
house, so that it was quite natural, that Phoebe
should be asked to come up to the Hall one evening,
to recite to her her favourite poems, and that some
strange ladies, who were visiting there, should be in
the room when she went through them. Phebe
was on this occasion a little nervous, and blushed
very red when she saw the circle of listeners around
Miss Gertrude’s sofa ; but she acquitted herself very
well, and gained great credit to her teacher, Miss
Louisa. She recited not only Montgomery’s “ Prayer,”
but his lines on the “ Grave ;” and she herself offered
to repeat “ The Better Land,” if Miss Louisa liked ;
and really astonished them all, by the very expressive
way in which she marked the difference between the
questions of the child and the answers of the mother
in this little poem.

As Phoebe went home that evening, she met Mr.
Brookbanks, the clergyman, as she crossed the park
to her father’s cottage ; and he found out, from her
answers to his inquiries, what had been the object
of her visit up at the Hall. Hé made no remark to
Phoebe, but that evening he sat down by the side
of Miss Louisa as she was making tea in the drawing-
room, and drawing his chair close up to hers, he
said—‘So you have had Phoebe Gibbons here this
evening showing off, have you? Take care that you
do not make her vain.’

‘Oh, Mr. Brookbanks, do you think I would do
that ? You don’t know how modest she is, and well
behaved. I am sure’

‘Well, it may be so, my good young lady,’ said
Mr. Brookbanks, ‘but at all events take care.’


i2 IN SCHOOL

amount of proficiency shown as she could wish—
then the books were all put away, the slates collected
together, and the work locked up. Two or three of
the elder girls stayed behind, after the rest were dis-
missed, to help Mrs. Presgrove in arranging the
school-room. The floor was carefully swept, tables
and benches dusted again and again, and the black
board cleared of every particle of chalk. Phoebe
and Ruth Gibbons were among the girls chosen for
these offices. In the midst of all the bustle, they were
observed to cast wistful looks every now and then up
the lane towards home ; and this was explained soon
by their little brother David making his appearance
with an immense clothes-basket full of flowers,
almost more than he could carry, which were sent
by his father for the decoration of the school-room.
Almost every dahlia that his garden contained had
been cut, as well as lots of asters, and phlox, and
scarlet geraniums. Mrs. Presgrove was delighted
at the sight of the flowers, and a number of ambi-
tious schemes came into her head as to how they
should he disposed of. It was just what she wanted
to conceal some ink-stains on the tables and desks—
and the places where the plaster had fallen off the
walls—what a charming thing if these could be
covered! A number of plans were tried, when all
at once a happy thought struck her. The dahlia
flowers could not only be arranged against the wall,
but they might have a motto with them, like the
Victoria and Albert, which had been so much
admired at the flower-show at N the autumn
before. Then came the difficulty about what should
be the inscription ; and after rejecting. many good
proverbs as too long, and not sufficiently appropriate,
she decided upon requesting the assistance of Mr.
Brookbanks. A deputation was going up to the
Rectory, to fetch some cups and saucers, and Mr.
Brookbanks should be asked to furnish them a motto


CHAPTER II.
EXCELSIOR !

THE examination-day came at last ; and if there were
any who dreaded what it might bring, they certainly
kept their fears to themselves, for it seemed as if
there had never been any event in the village of
Stapleford which made a day so much of the nature
of a festival. This was principally owing to the
kind plans of Mr. Brookbanks and the family at the
Hall. It was determined that it should be made
quite a holiday in the village, and that all the parents
of the children should be invited to take tea in the
school-room, after the business of the day was over.
Mrs. Yates, the housekeeper at the Hall, was
deputed to see after the cake, and bread and butter
for the large party that was expected to assemble ;
and Mrs. Brookbanks, the rector’s lady, undertook
to superintend the arrangements for the tea and
coffee ; and everything was to be so contrived, that.
when the examination was over, and the prizes
given, only a short interval of time would be requi-
site, in order to convert the school-room into a tea-
room, in which accommodation would be found for

Mrs. Presgrove, perhaps, from among those who
were to be present, was the least able to look upon
it as. a day of pleasure. She could not help feeling
nervous as to how her girls would acquit themselves.
She assembled school that morning at the usual
hour, but nothing was attempted beyond getting
things in order for the afternoon. Some of the
classes were heard in a hurried sort of way, just to
make herself sure of one or two points, where she
dreaded that there might not be as creditable an
AND OUT OF SCHOON. 1

—a single word, in fact, if one could only be found
which would mean a great deal. Back with the
cups and saucers, after being kept by Mr. Brookbanks
a wonderfully short time, as the girls thought, came
a piece of paper for Mrs. Presgrove, on which was
written the word “ Excelsior,” and a message to say,
that if she did not know what it meant, he would
take occasion to explain it after the examination
was over.

After a private look into her dictionary, where it
was not to be found, Mrs. Presgrove frankly con-
fessed to the girls that she did not know the meaning
of the word ; but it was just the right length for the
scar upon the wall, and that it meant a great deal,
she had no manner of doubt.

They set to work ; and with the help of a strip of
white calico first stretched across the wall at the
head of the room, they contrived to write in flowers
the mysterious word. Nothing could look better
than it did—each letter being formed of a separate
colour, and there being among the dahlias quite as
many as nine distinct and brilliant hues, from the
red, which was almost as deep as black, to the purest
white.

This inscription, together with the large nosegays
placed about the room—bough-pots, as Mrs. Presgrove
called them—seemed to convert their well-known
school-room into something as like fairy-land as any
of those girls were able to picture to themselves ; and
if it had not been for the table at the end of the room
covered with a green cloth, behind which Mr. Brook-
banks was to sit when he examined them, and before
which the different. classes were to stand—a part of
the arrangements which made their hearts beat when-
ever they looked that way—they would never have
been tired of gazing around them, and admiring the
results of their labour. But three o’clock struck,
when all was ready, and the girls were sent home to
14 IN SCHOOL

dress themselves in their Sunday frocks, in time for
the assembling of all the company at four.

It was really a pretty sight to see the turning out
of the whole of the village children, dressed in their
best, and marshalling in order to walk to the school-
house, while such of the parents as were disengaged
at that early hour, were also wending their way to it
in their neatest and smartest attire. A much larger
group of ladies than was expected issued, too, from
the gates of Shirley Park, and Mr. and Mrs. Brook-
banks had friends with them from the Rectory.

It had struck four before the carriage from
the Hall drove up with Miss Gertrude, who was
not able to walk down; and then the proceedings
began. Mr. Brookbanks was at his post at the head
of the room, with the ladies on each side of him.
The children were in the middle on their benches,
and the mothers were around Mrs. Presgrove’s chair
at the other end. People had hardly time to look
around them at the pretty decorations, and to wonder
at the curious flower-word, before Mr. Brookbanks
summoned Mrs. Presgrove to tell him in what she
wished her pupils to be examined. A paper was
given to him, and then the different classes were
called up in the order arranged beforehand, while
Mr. Brookbanks took notes, as he went on, of the
manner in which each member of the class acquitted
herself. :

Better, of course, than any one, Mrs. Presgrove
knew, directly a question was asked, whether it
would get an answer. She would wince, and flush
quite red, when one came that was decidedly too
difficult, or so differently put from the way she was
accustomed to ask it, that she feared it would not be
understood. She was allowed, on several occasions,
to explain, which was only fair; and at other times
she at once said, that ‘that was one of the branches
of the subject to which she had not yet turned their
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 15

attention.’ No one thought the worse of Mrs. Pres-

ove asa teacher for frankly acknowledging this ;

ut on the contrary, only wondered how she had
been able to teach them so much. The answers of
some of the girls quite surprised even the very well
educated listeners. They were quite sure, indeed,
that at their age they had not known so much. In
arithmetic, especially, when it came to the black
board being brought forward, and the chalk sums
set on the different rules, every one was astonished
at the quickness of even the little ones, and Mrs.
Presgrove got great credit. Mr. Brookbanks asked,
too, some very puzzling questions, ‘to be done in
the head,’ and got wonderfully correct and ready
answers.

‘How remarkably well that nice-looking tall girl,
whom they call Phoebe, answers !’ said one of the
ladies.

‘Oh yes,’ said Miss Gertrude, in a whisper, ‘that
is our favourite, Phoebe Gibbons. But you will hear
her recite poetry, presently, quite beautifully. She
is really a very clever girl.’

The examination of copy-books came next, and
then the work. Specimens of all sorts of stitches—
sewing, hemming, stitching, herring-boning, and
gathering — were neatly arranged on sheets of
coloured paper; and even make-believe darns and
button-holes were exhibited; and as each of
these specimen papers was filled with one girl’s
work, and marked with a number which only
Mrs. Presgrove knew, the prize could be awarded
quite fairly before it was known who would claim it.
With the writing it was the same. There were no.
names in the copy-books, but the one which all
should determine to be the best was to be set aside
for the prize.

The reading and recitations then followed ; and,
as every one had expected, Phoebe Gibbons was, be-
16 IN SCHOOT,

yond any doubt, the one who did best. After her
clear, distinct, and well-toned reading of the Sermon
on the Mount had been heard, together with her
correct answers to Mr. Brookbanks’ rather difficult
questions, there was no one who felt a moment’s hesi-
tation about her deserving the prize which Miss
Louisa Shirley had offered. The neatly bound gilt-
edged bible was handed to her by Mr. Brookbanks,
with a few kind and earnest words, which sank deep
into Phcebe’s heart. He said she had shown that
she was well acquainted with the letter of its con-
tents, and he hoped that her future life would show
that she also understood its spirit.

A neat little work-box was then handed by Mrs.
Brookbanks to the girl who claimed the best specimens
of needle-work,—Mary Groves. There was then a
long discussion among the ladies over the copy-books
—two of them showing such decided superiority over
the rest, that the matter could not be settled, until
Mr. Brookbanks, who had offered this prize, de-
cided. that he would give two books, one to each
of their owners. It turned out that these were
Phoebe and Ruth Gibbons; and every one was glad
that the good and quiet Ruth was to have a prize as
well as her sister. Last of all came the prize for
punctual attendance at school. Mrs. Presgrove pro-
duced her book, which kept a report of the daily
attendance of the girls. The numbers were cast up,
and there was quite a murmur of applause in the
room when Phcebe Gibbons was aiso declared to have
gained this prize. Mr. Brookbanks pointed out that
it was not to be wondered at that punctual atten-
dance at school should have secured progress and
excellence in other matters. It was the cause, in a
great measure, and the other was the effect. He
hoped that it would encourage the others to be steady
in.their attendance at school in future ; and he re-
marked to Phoebe, as she advanced to receive it, that
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 17

no doubt she had to thank the early good habits
implanted by her industrious father and mother for
this additional prize. It was observed how, at these
words, Phoebe blushed a deep crimson, and looked
across at Ruth, who sat on an opposite bench. She
seemed as if she wanted to say something ; but no
sound came from her lips.

‘Poor Phoebe seems quite agitated with her great
success, said Miss Louisa, and she kindly told her
that she might go to her seat again.

Everybody agreed with Mr. Brookbanks now in
regretting that there were not more prizes to be
bestowed. No one doubted that they had been most
fairly awarded ; although one girl had alone carried
off three of them—but there were many of the other
girls who had acquitted themselves so very well, that
the mere mention of their names, with words of ap-
proval and praise, was scarcely enough to satisfy the
judges. Mr. Brookbanks, however, pointed out, in
his concluding little speech, that these ha@Mafter all
the reward of knowing that they had done th€ir best,
and of being able to perceive themselves how much
progress had been made since that day last year.
‘And now,’ said he, pulling out his watch, ‘who will
get the prize for the best cup of tea in half an hour’s
time ; for I shall certainly be back to drink it.’

The ladies then withdrew—all but Miss Louisa
and Mrs. Brookbanks, who stayed to make tea, and
take it, too, with the large party of parents and
children that was to re-assemble.

In the little garden in front of the school-house
was seen a crowd of girls round Phoebe Gibbons, to
look at her beautiful prizes; and there were many
of the elder girls who were not sorry to remember
that they were not likely to have such a formidable
rival at the next year’s examination ; for Phoebe was
most certainly to leave school in the spring ; so that
some of their exertions were sure to be crowned with
18 IN SCHOOL

success, and there was no doubt but that Mr. Brook-
banks and the Miss Shirleys would give as many
prizes next year. This was all said amongst them-
selves, and it prevented a too deep feeling of morti-
fication at their present ill-success, and very luckily,
too, prevented any feeling of jealousy towards Phoebe.
In less time than had been thought possible, and
before the appointed half-hour had expired, the long
tables down each side of the room were set out and
spread ; the white cloths and numerous tea-trays,
and piles of bread and butter and cake, giving good
promise of plenty for the very large party of old and
young. All were seated—tea-cups were rattling, and
voices buzzing in happy talk—when Mr. Brookbanks
returned, bringing a nice little book for the extra
prize to Ruth. He took his place at the head of one
of the tables, and it was generally expected that,
after tea, he would make something of a speech or
address, which many of the fathers and mothers who
had never heard him, except in the pulpit, were very
anxious to hear.

When the last cup of tea was poured out and
drunk, and the plates began at last to stand still,
Mr. Brookbanks arose, and began his address by
saying how much pleasure it gave him to meet so
large a number of his parishioners on so pleasant an
occasion—an occasion which had shown them what
good progress had been made during the last year in
the knowledge of those whose duty it was to learn.
The young people had proved that they were doing
their best to avail themselves of the means of in-
struction and improvement which were offered to
them. They had gained knowledge which, for the
whole of their lives afterwards, might be considered
a valuable possession, which neither time nor change
could take from them, and which might, if they
liked, go a great way towards helping them forward
in the world. But he must remind them that know-
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 19

ledge was not all that was to be desired. He had
been asked to furnish a motto for the decoration of
their room, and he had chosen a word which, though
perfiaps unknown to most | ala was yet full of
meaning—and he turned and pointed:to the pretty
dahlia-word across the wall—



Should he tell them why he fixed on that word ?
He happened to have been reading, that very
morning, a little poem, which told a sort of allegory
or parable about a pilgrim who bore this word on a
banner, and who, climbing onwards and” upwards
among the high mountains called the Alps, had died
at last far up among the snow which covers their
summits, ‘still crying ‘ Excelsior,’ and when dead,
still grasping the banner on which was written—
Excelsior !

Now the word Excelsior meant higher, or more
high, and no better motto could any one adopt. And
in saying this he did not mean that the best thing
to do was to try to get higher in position or rank,
or worldly advantages, so much as higher in character.
This, Mr. Brookbanks said, was the very best thing
that a human being could aspire after—that is, to
raise himself in character, to strive after perfection.
The pilgrim in the poem had rejected all the offers
of comfort and luxury made to induce him to stay
in the valley ; and through storms, and snow and ice
had journeyed on still higher and higher, and after
reaching the highest point of the mountain, he fell,
20 _ IN SCHOOL

overcome with cold and fatigue, and dying—may
we not imagine that he ascended even still higher
into ——? and Mr Brookbanks paused, and, looking
round at some of the young people near him, as if
waiting to have his sentence finished by them,
several voices said, in a low tone, the word, ‘ heaven.’
‘Yes, heaven,’ said Mr. Brookbanks. ‘ Striving,
when here on earth, to get higher and higher still in
character, is the same as striving to reach heaven—
the highest object that any can attain. And how
can we get higher, but by leaving behind us all that
is. low—low feelings, low habits of mind, and low
pursuits. Let us set these aside. Let us seek after
everything that is excellent and of good report ; and
then shall we certainly rise higher and higher. And
let us do this in all humility of spirit, taking for our
example Him who was Most High, and yet humbled
himself as a little child, and who told his disciples
that unless they became as little children, they could
not enter the kingdom of heaven ; and who when they
disputed as to which of them should be highest in
rank, said ‘He that humbleth himself shall be exalted.’
And this was the end of Mr. Brookbanks’ speech,
which was most attentively and eagerly listened to,
by both young and old. They liked it because they
understood it ; and many silent resolves were made
at its conclusion by the hearers, that they would try
what they could do to raise themselves higher, still
higher in character. They looked with reverence
now at that once unmeaning word, Excelsior ; for
they understood its meaning. No one would ever
forget it ; and they only wished that its letters would
flash into their eyes at times when they were tempted
to do something low or base. What a pity that
those flowers would not last ! :
In rising to go away, many crowded to the end of
the room to look still closer at the beautiful dahlias ;
and it was then that Andrew Gibbons, Pheebe’s
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 21

father, promised that he would supply flowers next
year on the examination day, to write that word
again. ‘And a very well-chosen word it was,’ said
he, as he walked home with his wife and daughters
‘A word to my mind, with good sense as well as
good sound. I’m thinking, wife,’ continued he, after
being silent for some time, ‘that to help me to re-
member those excellent remarks of our good minister,
(ll name my new pelargonium after it. Pelar-
gonium Excelsior it shall be called, and I'll never
look at it without saying to myself ‘higher, more
high—higher in character.’
CHAPTER ITT. .
OUT OF SCHOOL.

THE flower-word had not faded on the wall of the
school-room, before the girls of the Stapleford school
were all busy at work again, after two or three days’
holiday ; and distant as the next examination now
was, there were still among them some who had
begun to hold it steadily in view, and were deter-
mined that they would never so far forget it as to
relax in any of their efforts through the long year
which lay before them. As we have before observed,
it was a comfort to them to know, that Phcebe
Gibbons could not run away with all the prizes next
year ; for it was quite decided that she and Ruth
were to leave school in the spring. Somehow or
other, it had got reported in the village, through
Mrs. Yates, the housekeeper at the Hall, that the
Miss Shirleys had thoughts of engaging Phcebe in
the place of Allen, their own maid, who was going to
be married. Miss Gertrude Shirley was to go abroad
for her health early in the spring, and was to travel
in Germany and Italy for more than a year, so that
it was enough to make Phcebe’s heart beat with
delight, when she thought that she might perhaps
be taken with them on this journey. It was, it is
true, only a report, but still there was sufficient like-
lihood in it to make her full of hope. Something
which Miss Louisa had said to Phoebe one day, as
she was shewing a class all the countries of Europe
on the map, seemed to confirm what Mrs. Yates had
said. She had asked Phoebe if she would not like to
see foreign countries ; and she turned to her in par-
ticular, when she traced on the map the route of the
journey which she and her sister were going to take
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 23

in the spring with their father—across the country
called Belgium, and up the river Rhine till they came
to Switzerland, and then over the Alps into Italy.
There had also been made, privately, a sort of promise
to Phoebe’s mother, on the part of Allen, Miss Shirley’s
maid, that in case her daughter should be her suc-
cessor, she would teach her how to dress the young
ladies’ hair, and give her some notions of mantua-
making. Far more did the thought of this situation
fill Phcebe’s mind than even the prizes of the former
year, and she exerted herself more than ever toxwin
approbation at school. It seemed, indeed, to the
whole family as if Phoebe’s ‘ getting on’ was a matter
to which everything else was to give way. Her
mother would at times keep Ruth at home to help
her on days when she was particularly busy with
her clear-starching and ironing, for she washed the
muslins and fine things for the Hall; but she never
thought of encroaching on Phceebe’s time. On market
mornings, if Andrew Gibbons wanted his breakfast
unusually early, or any assistance in tying up his
plants, it would be sure to be Ruth or little David
who was called up an hour sooner, rather than
Phoebe ; and at all times Phoebe had only to say
something about ‘my lessons,’ or ‘getting ready for
my class,’ in order to be excused from an errand or
little household job.

Things were in this state as the winter drew toa
close ; but it was at the beginning of February that
an event occurred which brought about many
changes, and led to some important results in the
Gibbons’ cottage. This event was a very serious
accident which befel Miss Louisa Shirley, and which,
owing to the kindness which she always showed
every one, gave much concern to all the inhabitants
of Stapleford. It seemed afterwards, as if every
body remembered the events of the day on which it
occurred better than any day in the year; perhaps
24 IN SCHOOL

because it was so often talked about among them.
Just at that time, Andrew Gibbons had some very
fine hyacinths in bloom in his greenhouse, and a
particularly brilliant Van Thol tulip. There had
been some talk about the ladies from the Hall coming
down to see them, which was perhaps the reason
that he told Phoebe that morning to be sure and put
some ashes on the steps of the greenhouse, as the
sharp frost in the night had frozen again some melted
snow, so as to make them slippery. Phoebe was up
late'that morning, and knew quite well afterwards
how it was her bustle to get off to school which
made her forget her father’s request about the ashes.
She and all the school children remembered well,
how that morning Miss Louisa Shirley came into the
school for a few minutes, to speak to Mrs. Presgrove
about some work. She had got off her horse at the
door, and was in her riding-habit, in which dress
some of the children had never before seen her.
They remembered not only her looks, but the few
pleasant words she said in passing down between
the rows of forms; and ah! how well did Phoebe
recollect her kind greeting, and her question as to
whether, if she called at her father’s cottage, she
should find him at home. For many a year, every
word and look, and every small circumstance which
made up the importance of that day, remained deeply
impressed on Phcebe’s mind. She remembered
glancing up from the page she was reading, to look
through the window at Miss Louisa assisted on to
her horse by the groom. She remembered seeing
her canter off in the direction of her father’s cot-
tage, her veil and feather streaming back from her
hat, and the white steam puffing out from the nos-
trils of the horses in the cold frosty air. It did not
seem more than half-an-hour from that time, when
Miss Louisa seemed so well and gay, that the groom
went galloping past the schoul-house to Mr. Ham-
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 25

mond, the surgeon’s, gate, and little David, her
brother, came running into the school-room to.desire
her and Ruth to go home directly, to help her mother
with Miss Louisa, who had fallen down and hurt
herself. No one knew—no human being knew the
pang that shot through Phcoebe’s heart when she got
home and saw Miss Louisa lying in dreadful pain
upon a mattress, in her mother’s kitchen, and was
told that she had slipped down the greenhouse steps,
and it was feared had broken her leg. Between the
times when the pain was too great for speaking, Miss
Louisa said something about her riding habit. ‘It
had, she thought, got entangled round her feet. She
had let go of it to take a white camellia which Mr.
Gibbons had held out to her just as she went out at
the door of the greenhouse. She did not seem to
know that the steps had been slippery ; and it was
only in a low voice that Phcebe’s father said some-
thing about them. Sick, and trembling, and bewil-
dered, did Phoebe run about at the command of her
mother, as preparations were made for the setting of
the leg, which Mr. Hammond, when he came, pro-
nounced to be broken, with a compound.fracture.,
Mr. Shirley, Mrs. Yates, and Allen came quickly
down from the Hall ; and there was the greatest
tae and consternation about the accident, although

iss Louisa bore it so wonderfully well, and tried to
convince every body that it was no great matter,
and that she would soon be well. There were some
arrangements begun for carrying her up in the car-
riage to the Hall, or upon the mattress as she lay ;
but Mr. Hammond pointed out the very great
advantages of her remaining where she was. If she
could but stay where she was for a week or two, the
cure could be affected so mu@h more easily ; indeed,
he said, that he could warrant her walking in half
the time, than if she were carried home, whether
after or before the setting. Miss Louisa then decided
-26 IN SCHOOL

herself to remain. It would altogether be better,
she said, and would spare her sister the sight of her
sufferings—and so it was all arranged, that the little
inner parlour at the Gibbons’ should be fitted up
into a bed-room as quickly as possible, and that the
sufferer should be at once laid in the position in which
she must remain until the knitting together of the
broken bone had taken place, so as to admit of her
being conveyed home in acarriage. Within an hour
from the painful operation of setting the leg, and the
bandaging and splintering it up, poor Miss Louisa
was able to look composedly around her in Mrs.
Gibbons’ little bed-room, and declare that she felt
herself quite composed, and quite thankful, as the
accident was to happen, that it should have hap-
pened there. The three weeks prescribed by Mr.
Hammond, would, no doubt, pass very comfortably ;
and with Mrs. Gibbons’ kind care, and the attendance
of Phcebe and Ruth, with visits once a day from Mrs.
Yates and Allen, to say nothing of the calls which
her father and sister and other friends and acquaint-
ances would pay her, there would be nothing left to
wish for. |
Through the whole of that day, Phoebe Gibbons
was more unhappy than she had ever before been in
her life. She said to herself, that it was her fault
Miss Louisa was suffering so much; and though
no one reproached her for it, or thought of it as an
accident that could have been avoided, she felt sure
herself that it was caused by her own negligence.
Every time that Phoebe saw her father, she dreaded
to receive from him reproaches about her neglect ;
but strange to say, though he actually spoke of
the steps being slippery, and said that some ashes or
sand ought to have been thrown down, he never
seemed to remember his having given orders for it
to be done. ‘This forgetfulness of her father’s, to-
gether with Miss Louisa’s own belief that it was
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 27

her riding-habit which threw her down, silenced at
last the reproaches of Phcebe’s conscience. Shig per-
suaded herself, that after all, it was no fault of hers,
and that it would be quite nonsense to speak of
having had any share in the accident. What good
could it possibly do to Miss Louisa, now that all was
over? And how zealously she would wait upon her,
and try to make amends for this little piece of negli-
gence ; and if she should ever be her maid-servant,
how devotedly she would attend to her and Miss
Gertrude, through weeks, and months, and years.
While these feelings were in her mind, it was a
relief to her now to have many little offices to per-
form for her kind friend who was so helpless and
dependent upon others ; and Miss Louisa seemed to
like no one to wait upon her so well as Phebe. For
a day or two she and Ruth were to stay away from
school, that they might assist their mother and read
to Miss Louisa when she was free enough from pain
to be able to give her attention to a book; but by
the beginning of the next week Miss Louisa was sure
that she should not require so much assistance, and
was determined that the girls should only stay away
from school on alternate days, and she wished that
everything else should go on in the usual way, so
ae they were, if possible, to forget that she was
there.

It was as well for Phoebe, perhaps, that Miss Louisa
decided this; for before the end of the week, she
began to find the sort of employment that now
fell upon her rather irksome. She felt herself
awkward, and wanting in aptness in doing several
things which Miss Louisa seemed to take it for
granted that she could do well; and it seemed
strange to her to have to set aside so completely
her books and lessons. Almost unconsciously to
herself, she allowed Ruth to do many little matters
in Miss Louisa’s room, which she had at first under-
28 * IN SCHOOL

taken to do, but which she felt dissatisfied with
herself for not managing well ; and Miss Louisa had
not arrived at the fourth day of her imprisonment
at the cottage without finding out that Kuth Gibbons
was not the slow girl that she had fancied her, but
was most active and alert as an assistant nurse.

The little room in which Miss Louisa lay was
separated from Mrs. Gibbons’ kitchen only by a
wooden partition, and down one side of it passed
the staircase which led up to the bedroom of the
girls, separated also only by a wooden partition.
As she lay there alone and in silence, she could hear
nearly everything that passed in the little cottage,
and she liked to listen to all their doings. It never
occurred to her that she should by this means find
out some family secrets ; on the contrary, it-gave
her at first pleasant thoughts to dwell on, as she
seemed, for the first time in her life, really to know
well what life in a cottage was. How thrifty and
contented were the lives of that father and mother !
With the faintest glimmering of morning twilight,
Andrew Gibbons was up, down stairs, and out in
his garden ; and not long after, was heard the
mother lighting the kitchen fire, and then filling
the kettle at the pump, ready for breakfast. Then
came the sweeping of floors and scouring of hearths.
The voices were evidently rather hushed for fear of
disturbing her ; and after the first stirring of the
family, she generally dozed again until near the
time of her own breakfast being brought to her, but
not until she had heard little David’s merry laugh
or whistle, as he put on his boots, of washed his
face in the back-kitchen, before going out to father
in the garden. Half between sleeping and waking,
she heard the mother talking to one of her girls, as
the pigs and chickens were fed, and in the intervals
of fetching the bread from the baker’s, the milk
from the dairy-farm at the end of the village—and
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 29

then the rattling of cups and saucers for breakfast.
She said to herself—‘ Now Phoebe has gone fer the
bread, and Ruth is at home.’ But the talking had
ceased, and presently it was Ruth who came in with
a story about the roll for Miss Louisa not being out
of the oven yet. Where, then, was Phebe? She
dozed again, and was awakened by a knocking above.

‘Make haste, Phoebe ; Miss Louisa’s breakfast is
nearly ready to take in to her.’

There was a second summons, and the breakfast
evidently waited until Phoebe came down. But
before this, Ruth had been in to bring the basin and
water that she liked to refresh herself with before
her breakfast came. ‘The pillows were all shaken,
and the support for her back so nicely contrived,
and the room made airy and tidy—all so quickly
and yet noiselessly, before Phoebe came in with
the tray. After breakfast, Allen came down from
the Hall to dress her young mistress, and comb and
brush her hair, and make her comfortable for the
day. It was the end of the tirst week after the
accident, that Allen was later than usual one
morning, and Miss Louisa grew impatient, so that
Ruth begged to be allowed to supply her place.
She had seen how Allen arranged her hair, she said,
and was sure that she could do it in the same way.
And so she did, most skilfully and nice. Seeing
how comfortable Ruth had made Miss Louisa, ren-
dered Phcebe more anxious than ever that day for
the time when she should read aloud while Miss
Louisa worked at her embroidery frame. But it
was Saturday, and Miss Louisa was sure that the
girls would be wanted by their mother, and she had
a great fancy herself for assisting Mrs. Gibbons in
some of her household concerns. She would darn
some stockings for her, she said, and insisted on
having Andrew Gibbons’ coarse worsted stockings
and little David’s socks brought in to her. But
30 IN SCHOOL

there were no holes! They had all been so carefully
mended, that there was nothing to do. :

‘It really does you great credit, Mrs. Gibbons,’
said Miss Louisa, when she found she was too late.
‘T cannot think how you can find time for work.’

‘It is Ruth, Ma’am, who mends them generally ;
for my sight is bad, and I have no time for needle-
work, except at nights.’

‘Ruth, indeed !’ said Miss Louisa, surprised, ‘and
not Pheebe ?’

‘Why, yes, you see Ma’am, Phoebe has always her
lessons to attend to. She must mind her book.’

These words caused some thoughts to pass through
Miss Louisa’s mind, that she had never had before.
Was it possible that Phoebe’s minding her book had
interfered with her minding her duties at home ?

The next day being Sunday, the father and
mother were not up quite so soon as usual ; yet still
there was great stir in the family at an early hour,
and a good deal of brushing of coats and hats ready
for church.

‘Only look here at my jacket, mother,’ cried little
David, in the midst of his operations, and in a louder
voice than he would have spoken, had he remembered
their new inmate, ‘ only see this rent that you told
sister Phoebe to mend. What shail I do for church?’

‘ Really I must say Phoebe is too bad to have for-
gotten that, so often as I have told her of it,’ said
her mother.

Phoebe was so late down that morning, that Mrs.
Gibbons herself brought in Miss Louisa’s tray ; and
it was Phoebe’s foot heard running down stairs after
all the rest were dressed, and had started for churth.

Sitting by Miss Louisa’s bedside in the afternoon,
it was really quite surprising to hear how well
Pheebe read aloud the evening service, and after-
wards she repeated quite beautifully one of Heber’s
hymns ; yet still it did not give Miss Louisa as much
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 31

shill
— ld

~

a

ll

a

ic il



pleasure as usual to hear her pupil’s performances.
She said nothing to Phebe then, but she thought to
herself that she should be glad if the coming week
should alter her impression about Phoebe’s character
at home. She resolved to notice more particularly.
Now, unfortunately for Phoebe, her doings at home
would by no means bear this close observation ; and
it. was impossible for Miss Louisa not to discover how
much difference it made to her comfort, according to
whether it was Phoebe’s or Ruth’s day for being at
home ; although, perhaps, Phoebe was the most fussy
in her attentions to her. For a long time one
morning she was left by Phoebe with the window-
curtain so that the sun came full in her eyes, after
every one knowing that a certain adjustment of it
was necessary to prevent this ; and Miss Louisa had
32 IN SCHOOL

not liked to call Phoebe to alter it, because she
thought that she was engaged with her mother,
when it turned out afterwards that she had gone in
to a neighbour’s to gossip. Another afternoon, she
left the room, when Miss Louisa was sending her up
to the Hall, and neglected to move the table near
enough for her to reach her embroidery silk when
she wanted a needleful, and forgot to bring her the
glass of water that she had particularly begged for
before she went away. Now Ruth never seemed to
forget these kinds of little matters, which are of so
much importance to a helpless invalid, who is wholly
dependent on others. She seemed always to foresee,
as well as to remember what was necessary to Miss
Louisa’s comfort. It was Ruth, too, who found out
the best way of rubbing her leg so as to prevent the
cramp, which very much troubled her, from lying so
long in one position, and even Mr. Hammond could
trust her to loosen the bandage occasionally, she did
it so expertly and well.

Out of Miss Louisa’s room, too, it seemed as if, on
the days when Phoebe was at home, all went wrong,
The pots boiled over on the little kitchen fire. The
shower came down before the clothes on the hedge
were taken in, in spite of her mother telling Phoebe
to run out at the first threatening of rain. While
her mother had gone up the village on an errand, the
fire under the kettle for tea was let to die out—in
fact it would seem as if Phoebe had not always her
wits about her, and that the cleverness for which she
was distinguished at school was never called forth
upon those little household matters, which, though
simple and easy enough, yet require, after all, some
thought, and are of importance, because, by their
neglect, the comfort of all around is destroyed. Miss
Louisa was thinking how she should make this plain
to Phoebe, and by what means she should prove to
her the worthlessness of knowledge gained by a
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 30

neglect of such duties, when her sister Gertrude
came down one day to talk over the question of
finding a substitute for: Allen, their maid. Allen’s
lover, it appeared, was getting impatient for the
wedding to take place, and it seemed desirable to
make a selection from among the young girls in
the village, so that she might get into good training
before their journey abroad was fixed. Would it not
be better, Miss Gertrude said, to speak to Phoebe and
her mother at once? Miss Louisa hesitated. She
said she would rather defer the decision for another
week, and expressed a hope that neither Mrs. Yates
nor Allen would talk to Phoebe before the matter
was quite settled ; and her sister left her, wondering
what could have led Louisa to hesitate, after all the
praise that she had given to the Gibbons family
generally. She had spoken of their kindness to her-
self, and of their truly respectable and industrious
manner of life; and as for Phoebe—it was scarcely
to ae supposed that she was less of a favourite than
usual.

It was in the middle of Miss Louisa’s last week at
the cottage that an occurrence took place, which
settled this question, with regard to Pheebe, in a very
painful manner. Spring was fast advancing at that
time, and yet there were sharp frosts at night, which
made it necessary for Andrew Gibbons to continue
all his precautions with regard to his more delicate
plants ; and the chimney of his little greenhouse
still smoked each evening, and his frames each after-
noon were carefully closed, and covered with matting.
One day, which had been particularly fine and warm,
it happened that he had to leave home to go to the
other side of the neighbouring town ; and he started
after dinner, taking little David with him, before it
was necessary to arrange these matters for the night.
He did not expect to be home till late ; so he gave
strict injunctions to Phoebe to go up the garden at
34 IN SCHOOL

three o’clock, and close the frames he had left open,
that they might get all the warm sun that was still
to be had. Phcebe said to herself that she would
not forget the charge, when she went to read to
Miss Louisa after dinner ; and she was the less likely
to forget it, because Miss Louisa was now frequently
in the habit of asking her, when she came into her
room, if she was sure that she had no little jobs to
do for her mother. She thought to herself how she
would jump up as the clock struck three, and run up
the garden, and Miss Louisa should see how she
remembered her father’s request. All turned out,
however, that afternoon, differently to what Phoebe
had expected. She had not read many pages to Miss
Louisa, before Mr. Brookbanks called to sit with her,
and sent Phoebe up to the Rectory for a book which
he wanted to lend Miss Louisa. Mrs. Brookbanks
kept her some time waiting, because she had a lady
calling at the time, and could not get away to seek
out the book. Then, Pheebe, on her return, fell in
with Allen, who had been taking down some jelly
from the Hall to Miss Louisa. Phoebe was not sorry
to have a talk with Allen, and was much interested
and excited by hearing from her that the wedding-
day was fixed, and, ‘as far as she knew,’ no one yet
engaged to take her place. Allen renewed her con-
ditional promises to Pheebe of assistance in the hair-
dressing and mantua-making departments, and took
Phoebe with her into the village-shop while she
chose a ribbon for her wedding bonnet. By the
time that Phoebe got home again, her mother was
impatient for her to see after getting Miss Louisa’s
tea ; and after that Miss Louisa sent her up to the
Hall with a message to Mrs. Yates. It was, of
course, quite dark by the time that Phoebe returned
home, and her father only coming back quite late—
just before bed-time—there was nothing which helped
to remind her that his commands about the frames
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 35

had been forgotten. She never once thought of
them—not even when she looked out in the mornin
and saw how everything was white with frost an
sparkling in the sunshine. And that morning,
though cold, was so very fine! It seemed as if every
body in the cottage was feeling unusually cheerful
from the brightness of the day. Miss Louisa, as she
lay on her mattress, waiting for breakfast, was
thinking how delightful was the feeling of getting
well from any complaint, and considering to herself
how merciful it was in a kind Providence that pain
and suffering should be the means of making us
conscious of the blessing of health. She then won-
dered to herself when the day would come that her
sister Gertrude would feel this certainty of getting
well that she did herself. She counted the days that
were left before she was to be removed from the
cottage, and thought of the pleasant week she should
spend, lying on the sofa in the drawing-room or
library at home, chatting and reading with her
father and sister; and then of the first walk she
should be able to take with crutches on the lawn ;
and then how the crutches would be exchanged for
a stick ; and, lastly, how the stick would be thrown
away, and all the preparations be begun for the
journey abroad. How very delightful were all these
anticipations ! and while they passed through her
mind, she was listening to such a sweet bit of
warbling from a robin that was perched near the
window, waiting for some crumbs from her breakfast.
And within the kitchen, where Mrs. Gibbons and
Phoebe were busy, things were quite as pleasant.
Pheebe had risen in good time that morning, and
was in good spirits, because she was satisfied with
herself for so doing. She was chatting cheerfully
with her mother, who was busy sprinkling some
muslins ; and her mother was particularly cheerful,
because it promised to be such a fine day for getting
36 IN SCHOOL

the rest of her things Uried. Alas! that anger and
sorrow should have entcred the cottage that morning,
as well as the sunshine and song of the bird !
Pheebe was setting the breakfast-things, when she
happened to look up as her father came down the
garden path. He had something in his hand, and
seldom had Phoebe seen him look as he did that
moment. He was red with anger and vexation.
Coming into the kitchen, he threw down on the
clean table-cloth a number of young plants that had



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evidently been just pulled up. ‘There,’ said he,
‘see what comes of my trusting to a good-for-
nothing idle girl! Look at my young seedling
balsams, destroyed with the frost of last night ; all
because you, Phoebe, never shut the frames, as I
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 37

desired you. I tell you, girl, you are good-for-
nothing !

Phebe stood aghast. ‘I quite forgot, father—
indeed I quite forgot.’

‘Quite forgot, indeed !’ said her father, still more
angry, ‘and how many shillings are lost out of my.
pocket by your quite forgetting ? Was it not enough
to have caused Miss Louisa to break her leg with
your forgetting, as you know you did ;

‘Oh father, spare me—spare me! Don’t say that,
father !? cried Phoebe, bursting into an agony of
tears, and covering her face with her hands, as she
sunk upon a chair. ‘Oh mother, mother, what will
become of me—what will become of me ?”

‘Andrew,’ said her mother, reproachfully, ‘Andrew
Gibbons, do you speak in this way to your own
child? It is cruel of you to say such things. Do
you remember,’ said she, lowering her voice, ‘ who
hears us?’ and she pointed to the door of Miss
Louisa’s room.

Andrew Gibbons checked himself in the midst of
his anger ; but Pheebe, starting up, said, amidst her
sobs, ‘No, mother; father is right. It was my fault
that Miss Louisa fell down—I know it was; and I
am rightly punished that she should know it. I will
go and tell her that it wasall my fault ;’ and opening
Miss Louisa’s door, she went in, and almost falling
on her knees beside the bed, she told what had hap-
pened the day of her accident. She entreated her
forgiveness ; and accusing herself of being, as her
father had said, ‘good for nothing,’ owned her
thoughtlessness and negligence. Never was any one
more penitent than Phoebe, nor more completely.
awakened to a sense of her own faults. She not only
told Miss Louisa all about the forgetfulness that had
been the cause of her accident, but’ she confessed to
having stifled the feeling which, at the time, should.
have induced her to frankly own her negligence


38: IN SCHOOL

She described what she had suffered during those
first days, and how anxious she had been to make.
amends. ‘But you see, Miss Louisa, I am so fixed
in my careless habits. Father is right in calling me.
good-for-nothing,’ and she burst again into tears and
sobbing.

‘No, Phcebe, you are not good-for-nothing,’ said
Miss Louisa kindly and encouragingly ; ‘you are
good fer much, when you can only cure yourself of
this want of thought and care. And do not fear
that this can be done. You love God, Phoebe; and
it has been a pleasure to you to learn much of what
God has made so beautiful and good around us. You
have been taught how all things are “ministers of
his which do his pleasure,” from the sun in its daily
course, to the meanest flower that blossoms at its
appointed season, so that through obedience to his.
will, all is order, and regularity and beauty. And
must not we too obey and faithfully perform our
allotted part in life? Are not the commands of your
parents, and all these little affairs which belong to
your daily life—do not these form the task which
your heavenly Father has given you todo? Do you
think that merely to perform well your school tasks
for the sake of gaining praises and prizes—Do you
think that this is all which God requires of you ?’

‘Oh, no, Miss Louisa; I see it all now. I know
that I have been thinking too much of praise at.
school. I know that Ruth is much more of a com-
fort to mother than I have ever been. And father
—oh, Miss Louisa, to think of your leg being broken,
all because I never minded father’s bidding! Oh,
you never will be able to forgive me, and I never
shall be happy again.’ And Phoebe’s tears flowed
faster than ever. _ |

It need hardly be said that Miss Louisa most
freely and frankly forgave Phoebe for the injury
done to herself by her thoughtlessness ; but she did
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 39

not. scruple to point out to her the punishment
which would very naturally fall upon her for her
faults. She told her how her sister and herself had
formerly thought that she might supply the place of
Allen to them—but that now it was out of the ques-
tion. Her sister Gertrude was too delicate, and
required too much the assistance of a careful and
thoughtful attendant, for her to like that any one
should be engaged upon whom she could not. quite
depend. ‘And though I depend, Pheebe, upon your
never forgetting your promises of amendment, I
cannot feel sure that it may not be long before you
acquire that clear and strong sense of duty, which
will enable others to trust to your preferring at all
times to do that which is right, rather than that
which is pleasantest.’ a

Phoebe submitted in silence and sorrow. She
had feared it: would come to this, and she knew that.
she deserved the punishment ; but when she remem-
bered how disappointed and grieved her mother and
father would be at her having lost such a place as
that of Allen’s at the Hall, her grief knew no bounds.
Suddenly she rose from her knees at the side of Miss
Louisa, and ran up stairs to her bed-room. She
returned bringing with her the prize which had
been given her for her punctual attendance at school
—the nice little gilt-edged book which Mr. Brook-
banks had presented with such words of kindness
and praise. She begged Miss Louisa to take this
book back again from her, and to tell Mr. Brook-
banks that she did not deserve it. She owned that
without Ruth, she never would have been at school
in time each morning. She confessed, that ‘man
and many a time it was only by Ruth urging he
to get up, and staying behind to make their bed and
assist her mother, that she had been able to get so
soon to school; and she ended by entreating Miss
Louisa to take into consideration having Ruth for
her maid instead of herself.
40 IN SCHOOL

. ‘It is not for me, I khow, Miss Louisa,’ said she
humbly, ‘to be asking a favour at this time; but if
you only knew how careful and steady Ruth is, and
how nicely she would tend Miss Gertrude—and then
she is quite as old as Iam, though she is not so tall
—oh, Miss Louisa, if you would only have Ruth,
how pleased my mother would be !’

Miss Louisa was only too ready to grant this
request of Phoebe’s in behalf of her sister, and did
not think her quite unworthy of such a favour ; but
she refused to receive back the unmerited prize.
‘Accept it from me again,’ said she, ‘in remem-
brance of this hour ;’ and laying her hand upon
Phoebe’s much valued prize for good reading, which
she had also brought and laid upon the bed, it was
in a tone more earnest and impressive than usual,
that she added, ‘Study this book, dear Phoebe, more
carefully than ever, and seek from it the lessons of
faith and love, which will amend your life. Read
here of Jesus, the beloved Son of God—how he was
obedient even unto death, and who said of us who
should follow his high example, ‘“‘ that he who is
faithful even in that which is least, is faithful also
in much.”’

And Ruth was engaged to be the Miss Shirley’s
maid; and while the decision brought happiness
again to the Gibbons’ cottage, all thought the better
of Phcebe for the kind and generous pleasure that
she shewed at her sister’s good fortune.
CHAPTER IV.
ONWARD AND UPWARD.

During the first week of Miss Louisa’s return to th
Hall, and as she realized her pleasant anticipationd
connected with home and health, Phoebe Gibbons
was the subject of many of her talks with her father
and sister as she lay on her sofa, while “Mr. Brook-

_ Ni ie T rr
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banks, in his calls, was confided in, and enlisted for
assistance in settling what was best to be done for
her. -In spite of the preference which had been
given to her sister, Phoebe was by no means to be
neglected or lost sight of ; and there was still so
42 IN SCHOOL

much of good in her character, that her friends did
not despair of her becoming one day a good and
useful woman. They saw, too,-that her faults had
partly arisen out of the notice and admiration
bestowed on her quickness and cleverness, and by
the too great indulgence which had been shown to
Bc at home ; so they hoped that, under new cir-
cumstances, she might be able to acquire new and
better habits and a higher sense of duty.

After much consideration on the subject, it was
found, that during the absence of the family abroad,
and while a great many changes and ‘clearings up’
were going on at the Hall, a young assistant to Mrs.
Yates would be a very desirable addition to the
number of servants to be left behind. Mrs. Yates
had always been fond of Phoebe, and liked greatly
the idea of getting her into good training for a yet
better place, could one be found for her. She pro-
mised to watch over her. most carefully, and to
endeavour to make her punctual, active, and dili-
gent, pledging herself that her partiality for Phoebe
shoeld not lead her to overlook her failings. Phoebe
was still to be allowed to go down to assist her
mother on days when she was particularly busy, and
was to attend as usual the Sunday-school, where she
had begun to give assistance as a teacher among the
little ones. |

All these kind plans and arrangements made the
parting between the twin sisters less painful than
they had expected, as Ruth departed with her young
mistress on their foreign travels. They were happy
in the thought that they should hear of each other
through the letters which came to or went from
the Hall; and Phoebe was determined that there
should be no mention of her name by Mrs. Yates
without expressions of satisfaction at her conduct
as well.

And Ruth Gibbons proved to be exactly the kind
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 43

of attendant that Miss Gertrude wanted. She quite
surprised her young mistress by the readiness with
which she fell into the performance of all her duties ;
and as a travelling companion, her expertness in
packing and unpacking, and, more especially, her
punctuality on all occasions, made her a great com-
fort to them. The carpet-bags and boxes, which
were her poeue charge, were always ready
packed by the hour appointed ; and on no occasions
were things left behind at hotels, or Ruth and her
packages too late for steamboat or railway train.
She was, besides, not too much excited or bewildered
by the succession of novel sights which followed
quick on each other, as they passed through foreign
countries ; and when Miss Gertrude was tired, and
was obliged to stop at home and rest while her
father and sister went out to see old churches and
fine pictures, it was a real pleasure to her to have
a quiet companion like Ruth to read to her, and
talk to about what they had seen.

Ruth learnt a great deal from her kind mistresses
during this Journey, and she learnt yet more from
what she saw of the habits and manners of other
countries. She saw that it was not only in Sta-
pleford, or in England, that the greater number
of human beings have to live by labour; and she
observed, too, that living by labour was no reason
why people should not be contented and happy.
How happy seemed to her the women and girls that
she saw in Belgium, sitting at their house-doors,
weaving the beautiful lace for which the country
is remarkable. And it quite delighted her to walk
about their markets, and observe the white-capped
peasant women with their beautiful fruit and vege-
tables, eggs and flowers. She wished that these
things were more often sold in the open air in
England, instead of in close shops; and she re-
gretted.that in England people of that rank in life
44 . IN SCHOOL

did not wear a dress peculiar to themselves, so clean,
and tidy, and compact looking, instead of being
more often dressed out in the old clothes of ladies
and gentlemen. |

And when they came to the great river Rhine,
she was astonished, as they went up it in the
steamer, to see the great rafts of timber, which they
met floating down to the sea—the timber of trees, as
Mr. Shirley told her, that had grown in the forests
of Switzerland and the south of Germany, and of
which many of our houses and ships are made. She
saw upon these rafts, which were sometimes as
large as a good-sized field, how numbers of men
lived on them, to steer and take caré of them ;
and how they even built little huts upon them, in
which they cooked their food, so that their chimneys
smoked, and women sat at the doors and knitted
stockings. She saw the steep banks of the Rhine,
all covered with vine bushes, which the people most
carefully weeded and tended, turning to account
every little patch of earth on the most barren rock
for the growth of vines, of which, as she was told,
they afterwards made the grapes into wine. Then
in Switzerland she saw how industrious and thrifty
were the people, whether working in large factories
to manufacture silk and ribbon, or in little work-
shops to make clocks and watches, or in the fields
and on the sides of mountains, to tend cattle and
make cheese and butter in their little huts or
chalets high above where the grass grew. All this
she saw, and much more; and she liked to see how
cheerfully and contented the people looked, and
wished that in England people could sing over their
work so merrily, and dance in the evening, and
find time for pleasant walks; while she saw, at
the same time, that there was one thing in which
foreigners and English people were quite alike, and
which you could observe even in passing. quickly
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 45

through a country, and this was, that the thrifty
and industrious were the prosperous ones, and that
good character in all stations and ranks meets with
respect and esteem.

As Ruth saw and learnt all these things, pleasant
accounts from Stapleford were found from time
to time at post-offices in towns and cities. Mes-
sages from her father and mother and Pheebe, at
the ends of letters from the butler at the Hall,
and Mrs. Yates. Notices, too, of Phoebe in the
letter as being all that she could wish, which Miss
Louisa and Miss Gertrude were very glad to receive.

It was about a year after their leaving home that
one of these reports of Phoebe was more than usually
lengthy. Mrs. Yates described her as ‘ greatly im-
proved ;? and while she spoke of her as having
been of great assistance to her in getting the new
bed-furniture and window-curtains made, she told
also of how Pheebe had been busy latterly in dusting
and setting to rights all the library books, and
saying that she was sure Mr. Shirley would be
pleased with the beautiful copy she had made of the
old catalogue, to which she had added all the new
books and pamphlets, and written out so very neatly.
The only bad news in this letter was the account of the
failing health of Mrs. Presgrove, who was beginning
to fear that she could not get on at the school with-
out an assistant in her labours. The Miss Shirleys
were in Italy, where they had spent the greater
part of the time of their absence, and where Miss
Gertrude had recovered so much strength, that they
were beginning to think of fixing the day of their
return, when a letter arrived from Mrs. Yates, in
which was the news of Phcebe’s having met with a
very advantageous situation, through the recom-
mendation of Mr. Brookbanks, and as no parti-
culars were given, it served Ruth as a subject for
guessing and wondering over as they journeyed
46 IN SCHOOL

slowly home, where it could be that Phoebe had
gone—how far from Stapleford, and in what ca-
pacity ; but she hoped that it might not be long
after her return before she should see her.

It was the end of August when the Shirleys
reached England, and they were staying to rest a
few days in London, when it occurred to Miss
Louisa how much she should like to be back on the
first of September, in time for the school-examina-
tion. They had at first thought that this would be
out of the question, and had sent word to Mr. Brook-
banks and Mrs. Presgrove, that all must go on as
usual without them ; but Miss Louisa said she was
sure everybody would be so glad to have them pre-
sent, that it was worth while making an effort to
reach home on the morning of the very day, if
Ruth thought she could get all their new purchases
packed, and if Gertrude did not mind getting up in
time for a very early train. Ruth and Miss Gertrude
were only too willing to do this, and an announce-
ment was sent home, that their presence at the
examination might be confidently expected, should
nothing unforeseen occur.

Something unforeseen did occur that day, but not
of the nature to prevent their being present at the
examination. They left town very early on the first
of September, and the train reached the station
near Stapleford at noon, where a carriage waited to
take them to the Hall. As they drove through the
village, they looked anxiously from side to side to see
the well-known faces that looked out from doors and
windows. They were about to pass the school-
house, when Miss Louisa hastily putting her head
out, desired the coachman to stop. She must run
in for a moment, she said, to greet Mrs. Presgrove,
and take a look at the children. Ruth must get
down too, and go at once to her mother’s.

Miss Louisa hurried up the little school-house
AND OUT OF SCHOOL. 47

garden, but had not crossed the threshold when she
called back Ruth. She had caught a glimpse of her
brother David—little no longer, and she must see
Ruth’s surprise to find how much he had grown.
He stood at the entrance of the school-room, with a
large pile of dahlias and asters before him, which he
had emptied from a basket on the floor—‘ If here
isn’t sister Ruth come home,’ exclaimed David, as
he sprang forward to meet her.

‘Miss Louisa Shirley !—Ruth Gibbons!’ cried a
number of voices from among the crowd of girls
who were clustered together at the end of the room.
The flower decorations for the examination had
begun, and the favourite old word was now being
written in gay autumnal flowers, for the third time,
on the walls. The portion that they had completed
stood there not unmeaningly, for they had written
as far as Excel—

But Mrs. Presgrove was not busied with the
flowers, but was seated as a spectator only in her
chair of state, and though, in answer to Miss Louisa’,
‘kind inquiries, she pronounced ‘herseéii mucn ‘petver-
yet she showed that she was not as strong as for
merly, as she slowly arose, and turning to the busy
group of children, who fell back as she spoke; she
said, ‘I must introduce my new assistant to you,
ma’am—my very able and excellent assistant, I may
say—’

‘Phoebe! Phoebe Gibbons !—you don’t say so!’
exclaimed Miss Louisa, in delighted surprise—
‘Ruth !—your sister Phoebe!’ and Pheebe taller
than ever, and womanly grown and dressed, ad-
vanced, blushing, and happy to meet her kind
friend and sister.

‘ Yes, ma’am,’ said Mrs. Presgrove, ‘ Mr. Brook-
banks was quite sure that you would approve of the
step, when you knew how improved and steady
Phoebe has become. She has won all our confidence,
48 IN SCHOOL AND OUT OF SCHOOL.

I assure you, Miss Louisa, and is very well able to fill
the post, considering her forwardness in learning. But
I tell her, ma’am, that her knowledge would never
have fitted her for the task, or made me feel that I
might trust my girls to her, if it had not been for the
improvement that has taken place in her character.
As Mr. Brookbanks said to us, you know, ma’am, on
a former occasion, she has raised herself in the best
possible way that any one can do, for she has risen
higher in character, and left behind her faults.’

Andrew Gibbons and his wife were not a little
proud and happy as they took tea that evening in
the school-room, seated between their two daugh-
ters, and knew in what respect and esteem they
were held, on account of their excellence in character
and conduct,

And after being for some years an assistant to
Mrs. Presgrove, Phoebe became at last the sole
mistress of the Stapleford school. She filled the
office ably and well. She proved a good teacher and
manager, and her own experience helped her much
in forming the characters of her pupils. She never
allowed herself to be satisfied with mere forwardness
at school, without making herself well acquainted
with the character and conduct of her girls at home,
nor was she satisfied to observe in them a love of
knowledge, unless she could feel sure that they loved
duty too; and she, above all things, endeavoured
to encourage in them a loving submission to the
will of God, which is best shown in a faithful per-
formance of all the duties of that station of life in
which He has thought fit to place us.

LONDON:
RICHARD BARRETT, PRINTER, MARK LANE.
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Page 35.

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THE

FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.



The aoe Dissoweay: Page 41.

London:

GROOMBRIDGE AND SONS,

PATERNOSTER ROW.
THE

FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.
ae

CHAPTER I.
A SHIPWR EO.

Ir our young readers will take a map of Europe,
and look to the west, they will see a broad wide sea
called the Baltic, stretching northwardand separating
the countries of Norway and Sweden from Russia.
To the east of this sea is a gulf, called the Gulf of
Finland, and at the extremity of that gulf, at the
mouth of the river Neva, stands the city of St.
Petersburg, the capital of Russia in Europe.

St. Petersburg is at the present time a populous
and beautiful city. It contains so many splendid
buildings, that it is sometimes ¢alled a city of palaces,
but about the beginning of the eighteenth century
(which is a hundred and fifty years ago,) the ground
on which it stands was an immense bog, or marsh,
surrounded by dreary forests. The only persons who
dwelt on the then desolate spot were some fishermen
who built a few little cabins near the water’s edge ;
but as the river at certain*seasons of the year fre-
quently overflowed its banks, and the cabins were
sometimes washed away, even these few little tene-
ments were often deserted.

I dare say most of our young readers have heard
or réad of Peter the Great, the celebrated Emperor,
or Czar of Russia. He built the city of St. Peters-
burg, and called it after his own name ; but of that
6 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

we shall speak hereafter, at present we have to do
with a humble individual, named Michael Kopt,
who lived in one of the cabins we have spoken of.

Michael’s father was a. Swede, and could read
and write, and was therefore far in advance of
the ignorant Russian serfs, among whom he lived.
Having been carried prisoner to Russia, during
one of the numerous wars between the Russians
and Swedes, he had been compelled to obtain
his living as a fisherman. He taught his son
Michael all that he had himself learned, and also
brought him up t@his trade. When Michael became
a man, he married a young woman, the daughter of
one of the same craft ; they were very poor, but
they lived happily together, for Margaret was thrifty
and affectionate, and Michael steady, sober and
industrious. During the fishing season, Michael
applied himself very diligently to his business, and
with his wife’s assistance, dried and salted the
greater part of the fish which he caught, then, when
the floods were expected, they removed to a village
some miles distant, and lived on the produce of
their joint labour.

One season Michael and his wife remained in the
fishing-hut, a few weeks later than usual, on ‘account
of the fineness of the weather, and there being no
signs of the floods. However, on the day before that
fixed for their departure, a violent storm suddenly
arose, and it was evident that the cabins were in
danger of being swept away, either by the strong
gale which blew from’ the sea, or by the water.
Terrified by the prospect, the two or three fishermen
who had been their companions hurried off, even in
the midst of the storm, hoping to reach a place of
safety, before the floods overtook them ; and Michael
and Margaret were preparing to follow their example,
when they were startled by hearing the firing of guns
as from a ship in distress. The fisherman and his
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. vA

wife looked at each other in deep concern, but
neither spake. What could they do to assist the
unhappy mariners, and the delay of one hour might
be death to themselves. |

‘Shall we go Margaret?’ Michael at length broke
the silence by saying. ,

‘Can we help those poor creatures ?’ she asked.

We cannot do anything to save the ship,’ he
replied, ‘but we may perhaps be of some service
should any of the people be thrown upon the strand.’

‘Then we will stop awhile, and trust to God’s
protecting care,’ she nobly rejoimed ; and as she
spoke, she laid down the little bundle of clothes
which she had hastily put together, intending to
carry with them. |

Michael now ran to the front window of the cottage,
with the idea of getting a view of the vessel in dis-
tress, but he only reached the spot in time to see her
go down. The wind had driven her with violence
against a rock, which had made a large opening in
her keel, through which the water rushed so fast, that
all attempts to check it proved vain, and she sunk
almost instantly to the bottom. _

‘All are lost!’ exclaimed Margaret, who had
followed her husband, and was now standing behind
him with her hands clasped together, and her eyes
raised toward heaven in an attitude of prayer.

‘Nay, dear Madgy, it is possible that some poor
creature may be drifted on the shore,’ cried Michael ;
‘I will at all events go and see.’

Margaret’s heart quailed with fear, lest her hus-
band’s life should fall a sacrifice to his humanity ; but
she could not oppose his generous resolve, so she
suffered him to go without a word of remonstrance.

As soon as he left the door, she fell on her knees
and prayed that he might be protected in his perilous
enterprise.

She arose in a more composed state of mind, and
8 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

then sat down to await her husband’s return. Her
patience was not long tried, he came in shortly after,
bearing in his arms a wicker-basket bound up in a
sheet of oil-cloth. The poor woman’s first words
were an exclamation of thankfulness for his safe
return ; she next eagerly inquired what he had
brought with him.

‘I have brought thee a child, Madgy, what say you
to oe Y cried the fisherman ‘looking at her with a
smile.



” ©A child!’ she repeated.

‘Yes, a brave boy. I found him in one of the holes
in the rock.’

‘Is he alive?’ asked Margaret, drawing: back the
oil-cloth that she might get a sight of the babe.
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 9

‘Alive, yes; the urchin seemed to be quite enjoy-
ing his new home.’

‘Don’t jest, dear Michael,’ cried Margaret ; ‘ the
mother of this poor little creature has most ‘likely
found a watery grave.’

‘True, but you will be a mother to him, wont you?’

‘Aye, that I will,’ responded the kind-hearted
woman, catching the child in her arms, and folding
him to her bosom. ‘ Aye, that I will, Miche, Ill carry
him myself, if you will take the baggage. But is this
poor babe the only. creature who has escaped ?’

‘I have reason to believe so,’ returned the fisher-
man ; ‘but I could not remain longer on the shore,
the water flowed in so fast. We must haste now,
dear Madgy, or we shall be too late.’

Margaret wanted not a second bidding, but after
having hastily wrapped the babe in a bear’s skin, she
and her husband quitted the hut..
CHAPTER II.
A JOURNEY AND A WELCOME HOME.

MicHakEt and Marearet had, as our young readers
may suppose, a very unpleasant and perilous journey
over boggy land, in the midst of a violent storm too.
The charge of an infant of three or four months old,
of course added to their cares and difficulties ; but
both the fisherman and his wife had stout hearts
which would not soon sink under dangers ; and the
Russians are naturally a hardy people. Their winter
abode was the cottage in which Margaret had spent
her childhood and early youth, which was still occu-
pied by her parents, they were therefore sure of a
hearty and affectionate welcome when their journey
was over. The old people had been very anxious
about them, fearing from their long stay, that some
evil had overtaken them, so the present meeting was
every way delightful.

‘Wehave brought some live-stock with us, mother,’
said Michael, smiling and looking significantly at his
wife’s mother.

‘ Live stock,’ repeated the dame, ‘why, what have
you got ?’

Margaret here took off the bearskin covering and
displayed her little charge to view.

‘What, a baby!’ cried the old woman in a tone
of amazement.

Wet and weary as the travellers were, it was not
a time to keep up a jest, otherwise Michael would
have let the old people guess for a while, before he
told them in what way the little foundling had been
thrown upon their protection, as it was, he explained
all in a sentence, and: then begged that they would
let him have something to eat.
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. Il

Margaret felt more disposed for taking rest than
for sharing in the meal, so she and her mother
retired together into one of the sleeping-rooms, taking
the infant with them.

The storm subsided in the course of the night, but
no effort could be made to rescue the shipwrecked
people, even should any of them have drifted to the
shore, for the river had by this time so far overflowed
its banks, that the path the fisherman and his wife
had so recently trodden, was not now to be seen. As
there appeared but little probability that the child
would ever be claimed, Michael and his wife resolved
on adopting him, and treating him in every respect as
if he were their own. The little fellow seemed very
well satisfied with his new friends. He smiled and
cooed at Margaret, in return for her caresses, and
tried to imitate Michael’s loud ringing laugh.
With Margaret’s mother too, he was an especial
favourite, and even the old man was much pleased
with this addition to their family,

The matter to be decided on next was, what name
the little stranger should bear. Margaret was re-
minded by his wicker-cradle and the perils of his
infancy of Moses in his ark of bulrushes, on the
banks of the Egyptian river. She could not help
thinking, she said, that a mother’s tender hand had
fastened him so securely in his little bed, and that
a mother’s prayers had saved him from a watery
grave, and she proposed that he should be called by
the name of Moses. However, when the swaddling-
clothes in which he had been found were closely
examined, an almost indistinct mark was found on
one of them, which after some little difficulty, was
discovered to be Gerald. It was therefore deter-
mined to call him by that name.
CHAPTER IIT.
A GLANCE AT RUSSIAN HISTORY.

Tren years glided away and very little change took
place in the fisherman’s family, excepting that the
infant foundling grew up, by degrees, into a fine
intelligent boy. In the long nights of the Russian
winter, unless there is some kind of mental employ-
ment, time passes very wearily. Michael had so far
profited by his father’s instructions, as to be able to
impart the elements of useful knowledge to Gerald,
who was both an apt and eager scholar. His natural
intelligence had thus been quickened, and his thirst
for knowledge increased by the humble but use-
ful instructions of his kind foster father. While
they used to sit round the large warm stove, when
they had read from the Bible or some other of the
one or two books, which Michael inherited from his
father, Michael would then relate incidents in the
history of Sweden, or talk about the great protestant
reformers—or the learned men his father had known
or heard of at Upsal, his native city. Gerald was
never tired of hearing about these things, and the
thoughts that came into his mind when Michael
talked about the famous university of Upsal, where
so many people passed their time in acquiring or
imparting knowledge were quite exciting, and. he
could not help hoping that something or other might
occur that would place him in the way of acquiring
more knowledge than he was likely to obtain in the
hut of a poor fisherman, dearly as he loved his kind
benefactors. Gerald was a good and grateful child, and
desirous of doing all he could to assist those generous
friends who had acted the part of parents to him.
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 13

Even when quite a little boy, he tried to help his
father, as he called him, in his craft. He was very
fond too, of his good mother, as he called Margaret,
and you may be sure they loved him very dearly.

Previous to the reign of Peter the great, the Russian
empire had been far behind the other nations of
Kurope in the progress of civilization. Even the
highest classes amongst the people were extremely
ignorant, very few of them could even read or write,
and they spent the principal part of their time
in feasting and drinking. They had neither ships,
nor sailors, and no manufacturing class of people,
except a few of the serfs who worked for the sole
benefit of their masters. The fine arts were un-
known, and the most useful arts were very im-
perfectly understood. At that time Peter, shared
the throne .with his elder brother, Ivan; but
Ivan, being only a little above an idiot in mind,
was a mere cipher. Peter, on the contrary, was
possessed of a powerful intellect and great sagacity,
and he had moreover an enterprising spirit. One of
his early acts on: ascending the throne, was, to send
a number of the young nobles of his court into Italy,
Germany, and Holland, to gain instruction in mili-
tary and naval affairs. He also sent to foreign
countries for ship-builders and various artisans, but
not satisfied with that, he afterwards resolved on
visiting some of those countries himself, for the
express purpose of learning how his own ‘kingdom
might best be benefited.

In pursuance of this plan, he, together with a few
chosen associates, first went to Holland, at which
place he worked as a common labourer in the dock-
yards, no one but those of his own party knowing
who he was. He next came to England. It was his
purpose to visit Italy likewise, but a revolt amongst
his people at home, and rumours that his sister
Sophia was trying to make herself empress of
14 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

Russia, obliged him to return after an absence of
only two years.

Having now acquired considerable knowledge in
ship-building and other valuable arts, Peter began.
to see the advantages which would accrue to his
country, by the establishment of a port on the Baltic
sea, at the mouth of the Neva. There were many
difficulties in the way of such an undertaking, and
one of the most formidable was, the low marshy state
of the land. These difficulties however, he deter-.
mined upon conquering. Had the Czar attempted to
accomplish the same ends by justifiable means, we
should admire his forethought and genius, but as on
the contrary, he carried them out by force and cruelty,
every humane heart must condemn the act as one of
tyranny and oppression. No seemingly desirable end
can justify us in using unlawful means.

To provide workmen for the undertaking, the
Emperor in the year 1703, sent bands of soldiers into
the villages with orders to compel those men who
were capable of labour to engage in the task. Our
young friends have no doubt heard of the press
gangs which were at one time allowed in England,
and of the conscription in France. Well, this
was a somewhat similar procedure, only instead
of being forced to become sailors and soldiers, as
the pressed men and conscripts were, these poor
people were compelled to make roads and rear a city
in an immense bog. The peasants, or serfs, as they
are called in Russia, were at that period in a very
degraded state. They were considered as much the
property of the nobles on whose estates they lived,
as any other live stock. Their houses mostly con-
fisted of but one room. In the centre of this room
was a large brick oven: in this they baked their
black rye bread ; and the top served for a bed for
the whole family at night. Their only articles of
furniture were, a lamp suspended from the ceiling,
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. : 15

and a rough bench or two fastened to the walls.
They were clothed in sheepskins, and their food was
of the coarsest kind. Bad as was their lot, however,
very few, if any of them, were willing to exchange it
for labour on public works of any kind, especially in
such an unhealthy situation as the marshes we have
spoken of. The impure air which rises from swampy
aud is almost sure to bring on fevers and other

isorders, Then no care was taken to make them
as comfortable as the circumstances would have per-
mitted ; no houses were provided for them to sleep
in, and the tools they had given them to work with
were so unsuitable and bad, that their labours were
thereby made much harder than they would other-
wise have been.

Exposed thus to hardships of every kind, the men,
as might be expected, perished by hundreds. But
these disastrous results were not allowed to interrupt
the work: for as fast as they died off, others were
pressed into the service and marched off to the place.
In Russia the Emperor has absolute power over all his
subjects : even the nobles, therefore, dared not to op-
pose the mandate, had they been so disposed. Among
the unhappy individuals who were chosen for the
purpose of filling up vacancies made by the sick and
deceased, was our friend Michael Kopt. His general
home being away from any of the villages, he, for
some time, escaped observation ; but when strong,
healthy men became scarce in the neighbourhood,
he and some of his companions were pressed into the
service, only a few minutes being given’ them for
preparing, and bidding adieu to their weeping friends.

Poor Margaret was for some time inconsolable,
and Gerald was almost in as much grief at seeing
her suffer. He tried to cheer her by every means in
his power ; but finding that she was hopeless of ever
having her husband back again, he formed a resolu-
tion which our young readers shall hear at another
time. -
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 17

came into the port should bring thirty stones, and
every boat ten, towards the erection of bridges and
other public buildings, Every peasant’s cart was
likewise compelled to bring three stones; and by
these means materials were raised free of cost for the
public works.

As the place at which Michael was set to work
was not many miles distant from the abode of his
family, he had an opportunity of seeing them occa-
sionally, which was a pleasure denied to most of the
labourers. Margaret and Gerald often went together,
and though it was frequently the case that they were
only allowed to speak with him for a few minutes,
they were glad to undertake the journey even for
that brief joy.

As Gerald was too young to carry on the fishing
craft alone, he. and Margaret resided wholly with
her parents. Gerald helped the old man to make
and mend fishing-tackle, which was now their
principal means of support; and Margaret did
anything she could to earn a trifle, still their
circumstances were very much worse than when
Michael was at home following his trade. Though
Michael was naturally strong, and had all his life
been used to hardship, he could not bear the labour
to which he was set, so well as many of his com-
panions. The air of the marshes was very different
from the sea-breezes, but the principal cause of his
sinking under his toil was, his spirit was crushed.
While a man possesses a feeling of independence,
he may meet difficulties and hardships with a bold
front ; but when he feels himself to be a slave, (and
these poor people were slaves though they bore not
the name,) his energies are in most cases benumbed,
and his spirit is broken.

Margaret used to look very sad and often to weep,
when she and Gerald returned from their visits to
the works, for with the keen eye of affection she saw
CHAPTER IV. i al
A GENEROUS RESOLVE.

At the mouth of the river Neva were several little
islands ; on one of these islands the Emperor had a
hut built for himself, and a wooden house for his
favourite minister Prince Mentzikoff, who was his
companion in all his enterprises. It was Peter’s
fancy to take up his abode on that wild spot and
watch the progress of the city he had planned. On
another of these little islands a fortress was reared,
surrounded by a rampart of earth. This fortress
was the station of the engineer who directed the
works, and the home of a few of the soldiers. The
inhabitants of Moscow were at first jealous of the
new city. They foresaw that it would, in the course
of time, from its very situation, be a more de-
sirable abode for purposes of trade than the ancient
capital; and they greatly opposed the plan, lest
their dignity should decrease as well as their inte-
rests suffer ; but the Czar was not a man to yield to
any, however high their rank might be; and he
persevered with his plans without regarding the
dissatisfaction which was so generally expressed.
The houses of the new city were at first built
wholly of wood, and chiefly inhabited by foreign
artisans. Peter, seeing that the Russian nobles and
wealthy merchants would not of their own free-will
take houses in St. Petersburg, published a decree
obliging them to do so. At the same time, however,
he gave orders that the houses in the best part of the
city should be built of bricks and roofed with tiles.
He also made a law (there being no stone-quarries
in the neighbourhood) that every large vessel which
18 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. |

what he was suffering, though he said not a word.
On the contrary, when in her presence, he put on as
cheerful an aspect as possible. At such seasons
Gerald always tried to comfort her, ‘ Good mother,’
he said one day, ‘do not, I beg of you, give way so
to grief, I am sure you will have father at home
again before very long.’

‘How can that be child ? she asked. ‘ You see
the Emperor does not let any of the men give up the
work until they are carried off by death. No, there
is no hope for my poor Michael; for he will die
before this huge city is finished.’

‘Oh no, he will not die, mother,’ cried the boy,
‘I feel sure he will not die! You know you have
yourself taught me that God takes care of good
people, and I am sure father and you are good. You
have taught me, too, that God hears our prayers if
we pray to him with sincerity ; and I have prayed
very earnestly and very often that he would bring
dear father back. Courage, good mother, do not
weep ; you will have him with you again, and that
before long.’ "

We must now tell our young readers that Gerald
had formed a determination to offer himself as a sub-
stitute in Michael’s place. He made this resolution
very soon after the fisherman was taken from his
family ; but he well knew that would not be the
time to put it into practice, as he was not then
eleven years of age. He hoped however, in about
two years’ time, to be suitable in appearance as well
as one and otherwise fitted to undertake the
task.
CHAPTER V.
THE PROPOSAL.

THIS one idea was so constantly in Gerald’s mind,
that it could scarcely be said to be ever absent from
his thoughts. He dwelt on it as he sat over his work
by day ; he dreamed of it at night; and he prayed
constantly for the blessing of God upon it. Still he
said not a word to any one, being afraid that should
he do so, his plan might meet with opposition, He
feared that Margaret would say he was too young to
engage in such work.

hen a little more than two years had elapsed,
he began to think that he might make known his
plan with some hope of success. He was by this
time a fine tall lad of nearly thirteen. He thought
the most suitable season for making such a proposal
would be as he and Margaret were returning. from
one of their visits to the works. The state of health
in which they found poor Michael, at the next visit,
favoured the project. He was evidently much worn,
and Margaret was almost broken-hearted when she
parted from him, thinking it probable that she should
never see him again alive.

As they walked home, the poor woman leaned on
Gerald’s arm and wept bitterly. ‘Now,’ thought he,
‘is the time for me to name my plan ;’ so, looking
up tenderly in her face, he said, ‘I have something
to say to you, dear mother, which I -hope will make
you dry up your tears. I have often tried to cheer
you with the prospect of a happier time, but now :
think it is nearly come.’

‘You mean,’ said Margaret sorrowfully, ‘ that I
and my poor Michael shall soon be together in a
happier world.’
20 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

‘No, good mother, I don’t mean that,’ Gerald
eagerly returned, ‘I hope you will meet together in
Heaven at last ; but not very soon. Oh no, I mean
oe you will ere long be happy together in our own

ome.’

‘Neyer, never, my dear boy,’ she cried, weeping
afresh. :

“Don’t weep so, mother, but listen to what I am
going to say to you, Gerald added, and a bright
smile lighted up his intelligent face. ‘I am now a
tall, strong boy—almost as tall, and quite as strong,
I think, as dear father was when he was carried off ;
and I mean to take his place and let him come home
to you.’ |

Margaret looked up in amazement, but she did not
speak, for her feelings were too powerful to admit
of words.

‘I mean,’ Gerald proceeded, ‘to go to the Czar
myself. I hear that he is generally to be found,
either at his cottage in the island or else overlooking
the works. I am not afraid of the Czar, mother :
the errand on which I shall go will take away all
fear. I feel as bold asalion—aye, and as strong too.’

‘Thou art a noble boy, Gerald,’ cried Margaret, at
length finding utterance. ‘Go,’ she added, ‘and
may God bless thee.’

‘You consent then, good mother, you consent ?’
cried Gerald in an ecstacy of delight. ‘ My only fear
was, lest you should oppose my plan; but if you
consent, it will—it shall be done.’

‘Nay, my dear child,’ Margaret said, ‘ I am not the
only person likely to oppose your plan; the Czar
may not be willing to make the exchange.’

‘Surely he will,’ cried the boy, ‘surely this strong
limb—holding out his right arm—can do him better
service than poor father’s now weak one can do;
and gratitude and affection for one who has done so
much for me will nerve it for its work.

Gerald then begged Margaret not to, say anything
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 21

at home concerning his design, and that she would
allow him to put it into operation immediately.

He had heard that it was the Emperor Peter's con-
stant practice to rise at five in the morning, and he
determined on seeking him at that early hour, before
his attention was taken up with the businegs of the
day. There were difficulties, however, in the way of
his carrying out this purpose. The little: island on
which Peter made his homg..was a good day’s
journey from their village, ant as the only houses
built upon it were the Czar’s (which was but a mere
hut,) the prime minister’s and a sort of inn, where
Peter and his friends mostly spent their Sundays, he
was fearful lest he should not be able to get any
conveyance across the water.

Nothing daunted, by these seeming obstacles, he
resolved on setting out for the place the very next

day.
CHAPTER VI.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE PRIME MINISTER.

Leavine it to Margaret to explain to the old people
the reason for his absence, Gerald started the next
morning soon after dawn. When she saw him ready
to set out, the good woman almost repented of having
consented to his going ; still she made no attempt to
dissuade him from his purpose. She provided him
with the best food the cottage could afford, and
with tears in her eyes, bade him “God speed.” The
day was favourable, and he tripped along with a
light heart and a light step. No one, to see him,
would have imagined that he was seeking to be
placed in circumstances, at the thought of which
many stout-hearted men quailed. He did not dwell
however, on the hardships and dangers that might
await him; he only thought of how he should gladden
the spirits of those who had so long acted the part of
parents tohim. He knew that they would he grieved
to purchase their own comfort at the sacrifice of his
liberty, and it might be of his health also; but he
hoped that his youth and good constitution would
enable him to bear the toil for a time, ‘and perhaps,’
thought he, ‘I may find favour in the sight of the
Czar, and he may not doom me to spend all my best
days at such work.’

In his way to the island where the Emperor’s
humble court was kept, Gerald passed the spot where
Michael’s cottage had once stood, the spot where he
had been rescued by his kind guardian from a watery

rave. The view of this place, and the recollections
it called forth, seemed to give him new strength and
spirit for his undertaking and though wearied with
his journey, he went on even brisker than before.
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 23

Some of the fishermen’s huts were still occupied,
and Gerald stopped at one of them to inquire his way.
One of the men directed him, supposing him to be
the bearer of a message from some person in autho-
rity ; for he took the precaution to keep his plan
secret from every body, lest the telling it should
by any means mar its success.

It was nearly dark when he reached that part of
the river’s banks which faced the island, but late as
it was he resolved on trying to get over that night.
While he was standing considering what would be the
best means to adopt, three men came within sight, and
jumped into a boat which was moored hard by.
Gerald ran eagerly down to the beach, calling loudly
to attract their attention, ‘May I ask, whither are
you going my friends.’

‘ We are servants of his excellency, Prince Mentzi-
koff, and are going to his house,’ replied one of the
men.

‘ Will you row me over with you ?’ asked Gerald,
at the same time holding out a small coin.

‘Have you any business with his excellency ?
inquired one.

‘My business is with the Czar, but I should be
glad to see Prince Mentzikoff first, if I could get
admittance to him,’ Gerald replied.

‘ What is your business with the Czar ?’ demanded
another.

‘I have a favour to ask of him.’

‘If that’s the case, you cannot do better than get
his excellency to introduce you,’ rejoined the first
speaker ; ‘come hasten into the boat, we must not
tarry, or we shall be put into too hot an oven, and
so repent of it.’

This speech of the man’s had reference to the
prime minister’s origin. Mentzikoff was, when a
boy, in the service of a pastry-cook at Moscow, and
he first attracted the attention of the Emperor by
24 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

the humorous manner in which he sang a song ex-
tolling his master’s pies. Peter offered him*a menial
office in his household, but afterwards discovering
that he had a genius for military affairs, he placed
him in his army, where he rose rapidly. This young
man was one of the Czar’s companions on his journey
to Holland and England. ‘



As the men rowed the boat across the river, one
commenced a song, and the others joined in chorus.
The Russian people are noted for their love of music,
and they generally lighten their labours by singing.

On reaching the island, they conducted our hero
at once to the house of the minister.

The house of Prince Mentzikoff was very superior
to the one occupied by his sovereign, for Peter took
pride in demeaning himself when he was in the mood
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 25

to do so; still it was but a rude affair, as our young
readers will no doubt think when they hear it
described.

It consisted of a number of wooden beams, so pre-
pared as to fit readily into each other. Lattices and
shutters. for windows were also made to fit in, and
these detached pieces could be packed up and carried
to any place that the owner chose to reside in. Most
of the houses in the towns and cities of Russia were,
at that time, so constructed ; and ready-made houses
were common articles of merchandise in the public
markets. The furniture of these dwellings was as
rough and portable as the outside ; a few shelves and
some wooden benches were fixed to the walls, and
a few tables were added. The benches served for bed-
steads as well as for seats, and when these houses were
put up in the country, it was seldom that they afforded
the luxury of a bed.
little ceremony was used at that period, especially
in such a retired place, and Gerald was introduced at
once into the presence of the Prince. Menztikoff was
seated on one,of the benches, having a table before
him, on which stood a bottle of spirits and a large
horncup. He had evidently been drinking rather too
freely, which bad practice, though sanctioned by the
example of the Czar, and the custom of the country,
was a new spectacle'to our hero, who had always been
accustomed to see sobriety in his humble home.

‘What is your business with me? the Prince
somewhat roughly demanded as Gerald advanced.

‘Will your excellency do me the favour of intro-
ducing me to the Czar before he leaves the island in
the morning,’ Gerald said, at the same time making
a low bow.

‘For what purpose do you wish to be introduced
to his Majesty ?? Menzikoff abruptly asked.

‘ Please your excellency, I have a favour to request. :

‘What, boor ? Dost thou think to enter the Czar’s
26 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

service ? Thou art a dainty lad for thy station, but
thou’rt not quite to his mind I fancy.’

‘I do wish to enter the Czar’s service,’ Gerald
replied ; ‘my request is that he will let me labour
on the public works.’

The minister looked up as if doubting whether he
heard aright :—‘ Art thou in earnest, boy,’ he de-
manded, ‘ or art thou jesting with me ?

‘I would not take the liberty to jest with your
excellency,’ Gerald replied: ‘indeed my errand is
not a matter for jest. I am in earnest. I wish
to take the place of a man who has been more than
a father to me.’

‘Ha

‘One Michael Kopt, once a fisherman on the Neva,
has been upwards of two years upon the works, but
his strength is failing, he can now be but of little
use to his Majesty, and I have a strong arm.’

‘Come hither at the dawn of day,’ said the Prince.

Gerald again bowed, and was about to leave the
room, when Mentzikoff calling after him said, ‘ Bid
my servants find thee a lodging and a meal,’ and
added, ‘come hither at the dawn, I’ll take thee to
the Czar myself.” Here he turned aside to re-fill the
horn cup and quaff off another draught of spirits.
CHAPTER VII.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE CZAR.

GERALD was true to his appointment, and he found
the Prince prepared to receive him. But few words
were exchanged ; Mentzikoff beckoned him to follow,
and they proceeded together to the Ozar’s hut. It
is an odd fancy for an Emperor to live in such a
place when he might live in a grand palace, thought
our hero ; however, he wisely kept his thoughts té
himself.

Peter had been put out of temper the night before,
by meeting with some trifling opposition to his
wishes and plans; and the minister, though a very
great favourite with his sovereign, was not quite
sure that even he could get a hearing at that time.
He had taken a fancy to Gerald, however, and he
was determined to do all he could to serve him.
Bidding him, therefore, wait without till he called
or sent to him, Mentzikoff entered the Czar’s hut
alone.

Peter was up as usual and busy with his plans for
the new city. The Prince did not, therefore, at once
state the object of his early visit, but quietly listened
to all his sovereign had to say. After a while, how-
ever, he ventured to lay the business before him.

The Emperor’s brow darkened and became more
and more contracted as the Prince proceeded. ‘ What
were the boors made for but to serve their country
in that way ?” he fiercely asked.

‘True, Sire ;? returned the Prince, ‘ but this poor
man is it appears unable to serve his country by
manual labour any longer, and as the youth is so
28 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

desirous of taking his place the exchange will be for
your Majesty’s benefit.

‘Bring him hither,’ was the Czar’s abrupt re-
joinder.’

Gerald was the next minute ushered. into the
presence of the Emperor.

‘ Come here, boy,’ he cried in a loud stern voice.

Gerald obeyed, but without shewing any signs of
alarm. —

‘Thou’rt not Russian ?’ the Czar added, surveying
his person with a scrutinizing glance.

‘I know not to what country I belong, Sire,’ the
youth replied ; ‘I was shipwrecked on the coast
hard by, and I owe my life and everything else I
possess to Michael Kopt.’

‘And who is Michael Kopt ?’ -

‘Sire, Michael Kopt is the man whose place in the
public works I wish to fill.’

‘Thou art of too slight a make for such work,
boy,’ cried the Czar.

‘Nay, I have a stronger arm than I may seem to
have, Sire; and if anything can nerve it for the
work surely gratitude will do so.’

‘By what name art thou called ? denianded the
Emperor.

‘My name is Gerald, Sire.’

‘And how many years ago was it that thou wert
shipwrecked on these shores ?”

‘It was a little more than twelve years ago, Sire,
I was then an infant of only a few months old.’

‘And you have never heard anything of your
parents or friends ?”

‘Never, Sire. The river was at that time begin-
ning to overflow its banks, and I have reason to
believe that I was the only person who escaped the
wreck.’

_ The Czar mused for a few moments, then snatching
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 29

up a piece of parchment from the table before him,
he wrote a few words upon it, and gave it into the
hand of the minister.

‘Give the boy that, Mentzikoff,’ he said ; ‘let him
present it to the master of the works, and his re-
quest will be promptly attended to.’

The Prince handed the parchment to Gerald who
took it with a countenance radiant with delight.
He could not speak, but making a low obeisance first
to the Czar and then to the minister, he withdrew
from the royal presence.

As may be supposed, our hero lost no time in re-
turning to the cottage with the joyful news of his
success. But much as they all loved Michael, Mar-
garet and the old people could scarcely rejoice in
the thought of his restoration to his home when his
liberty was to be purchased at such acost. To the
grateful boy, however, every task seemed light, and
even his humiliation appeared honourable. Nor was
this a delusive idea, for the most laborious employ-
ment derives dignity from a noble motive.

The different circumstances under which Michael
and Gerald commenced the same task made a wide
difference in their feelings when engaged in it. With
the former it was compulsory, with the latter it was
voluntary. Michael felt himself to be the ae
servant of a tyrannical master. Gerald overlooke
the fact of working for the emperor in the anima-
ting idea that he was conferring a benefit on those
who had done so much for him. He had more-
over the delightful consciousness that his sacrifice
of self met with the smile of his Father in Heaven.
Nor did Gerald repent of the noble sacrifice he had
made, when the first excitement was over, and he
came to endure the severe, and in some instances,
unexpected hardships it had brought upon him. He
not only commenced his work cheerfully, but con-
30 THE FOUNDIING OF THE WREOK.

tinued to pursue it with the same happy spirit. His
joy and thankfulness were unbounded when he
received intelligence that Michael was gradually
recovering his health under Margaret’s careful
nursing. At length the good woman herself came
to visit him, bringing the news that her husband
was now s0 nearly restored that he hoped to be able to
walk as far himself ere long. Gerald thought, how-
ever, that it would not be wise for him to come,
lest it being known that he was again capable of
labour, he should be pressed a second time into the
service, and his fears were not without foundation ;
for where there is a despotic government, the hum-
bler classes of the people are looked upon as little
better than machines, made for the sole purpose of
executing the plans of those in power.
CHAPTER VIII.

A GREAT AND UNEXPECTED CHANGE—OUR HERO IN
MOSCOW.

Wen Gerald had been about'six months at his new
employment, to his great surprise he was one morning
told by an inspector of the works, that an order had
just come from the Emperor signifying that he was
to be sent immediately to Moscow.

This intelligence created a little alarm in the
breast of the youth, for he could only suppose that
he was suspected of having committed some offence.
Conscious, however, of having discharged his ap-
pointed duties with faithfulness, he asked the officer
whether he were sure that he was the person men-
tioned in the royal letter.

‘The person signified is called by the name of
Gerald’ Kopt. His person is described, and the
description answers exactly to you.’

‘I am called by the name of Gerald Kopt,’ the
youth replied, ‘and if the Czar commands me to go
of course I must obey. Indeed I have no objection
to going. But should my mother come here and
miss me, who will let her know whither I am gone ?’

“TI will engage that your mother shall be told all
that we know concerning you,’ replied the officer.

‘Many thanks for that kindness,’ cried Gerald,
looking gratefully in the man’s face, ‘ I am now ready
to attend the Czar’s orders.’ |

Could Gerald have divested himself of the idea
that he might be going as a culprit to be tried for
an unknown offence, he would have been delighted
with the journey, for he had long had a strong
desire to see morc of the world.
32 THE FOUNDING OF THE WRECK.

The distance from St. Petersburg to Moscow,
which is upwards of four hundred miles, was a
formidable journey in a country where the roads
were bad, and there were very few inns. At a sub-
sequent period the Emperor Peter had gond roads
made between the large towns, and inns and posting-
houses were built upon them. Canals were also dug
to connect the great rivers, and there were many in-
provements of a similar kind ; but these things were
the work of considerable time. Some of them were
only just commenced at the period of which we are
speaking.

On their way to Moscow the party passed through
the town of Novogorod, the seat of the earliest
government, and afterwards so noted as a republic.
Gerald was greatly pleased that he had an opportunity
of visiting this lace. for Michael and his father-in-
law had told him something of its ancient history.
How about the middle of the ninth century, Rusic,
a Norman pirate chief, when cruising about the
Baltic with his followers had sailed down rivers and
through lakes till they came to this city, which was
then a mere cluster of wooden huts inhabited by
barbarians, and how the Norman had made himself
master of the place, assumed the title of Grand
Duke, and laid the foundation of the present powerful
and extensive empire of Russia.* Many legendary
tales were told of the adventures of these wild
Normans, and most of these adventures were asso-
ciated with the city.

On reaching Moscow our hero was so interested
in the place.as to forget the painful circumstances
under which he was visiting it. The city was at that

* Igov, the son of Rusic, afterwards made Kirow the
capital of the country ; but Novogorod was for a considerable
time a place of importance, and the chief city of a republican
state.
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 33

period enclosed with three walls ; one built of brick,
surrounded that portion called the Kremlin, where
the Czar’s palace and the residences of the chief of
the nobility stood ; another built of stone, took in
a larger extent of the city; anda third formed of
wood, enclosed the suburbs. On the banks of the
river Moskwa, which runs through the city, were a
number of wooden hits, the public baths. These
baths were constantly frequented by the inhabitants,
as bathing was at that time a religious ceremony
amongst the Russian people. The poorest classes
— failed to attend the baths at least once in the
week,

It was Palm: Sunday when Gerald and his con-
panions arrived, the place was consequently in a
state of universal excitement. The bells too were
ringing merrily. Moscow was famous for the size
and number of its bells. To present a large bell to
a church was considered by some a very pious act,
therefore almost every new sovereign had a bell cast
larger than that which had been given to the city
by his predecessor.* Palm Sunday was a day on
which a very, grand festival was always held. The
religion generally professed in Russia is according to
the Greek Church, which is very similar to the
Roman Catholic religion. At that time the church
was governed by persons called Patriarchs, who
were something like the Popes. The Patriarch
lived in Moscow, ina palace adjoining that of the
Emperor where he kept a court, and lived in as much
state as the Czar himself.

On the festival of Palm Sunday the emperor
always walked to church, gorgeously arrayed in a

* The Empress Anne, the daughter of Ivan, who reigned
soon after Peter’s death, presented a bell to the city of Moscow
which weighs 432,000 pounds, and is the largest bell in the
world.
34 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

dress made of cloth of gold, two princes holding up
his train. He was followed by a grand foot pro-
cession consisting of the whole court splendidly
attired. Behind the nobles were a number of the
chief citizens and lawyers, each having a branch of
willow, to represent palm, in his hand, and beyond
these were the guards of the palace. In this pro-
cession the Patriarch always rode beside the Em-
peror, who held the bridle of his horse, and he was
the only person mounted, excepting the guards.

Our hero and his companions met the proces-
sion as it was just leaving the palace, and they
stood for a while to watch it pass. Gerald’s asso-
ciates were delighted at having arrived in time to
witness it, and Gerald was himself pleased with the
sight, for he had never seen anything of the kind
before. But looking on it as a religious festival he
could not help feeling pained. These men he knew
were about to fall before images and offer up prayers
to saints and angels, and they would afterwards
spend the sacred hours of the Sabbath in feasting
and drinking ; for no religious festivals were at that
time held in Russia without feasting and drinking
to excess. Happily for our young hero he had been
taught a purer faith. The Bible, Michael’s best in-
heritance from his father, had not been made such
poor use of, as to allow Gerald to imbibe the super-
stitions, and. practice the foolish ceremonies of the
Russians.
CHAPTER IX.
‘OUR HERO AT THE COURT OF PETER THE GREAT.

On entering the palace Gerald was at once taken to
a comfortable apartment, and supplied with refresh-
ment.. ‘Surely,’ thought he, ‘the Czar has some
kind intentions respecting me, or he would not give
orders that I should be treated in this manner ;’ and
he was much relieved by this thought. Having
finished his meal, he was conducted by a domestic or
slave (for all the domestics in Russia were slaves) to
one of the baths prepared for the household, and
then to a wardrobe, from whence a handsome robe
was given him to put on in the place of his sheepskin
garments. He was further told that he would most
likely be summoned to attend on the Emperor in the
evening.

The robe in which Gerald was arrayed was of dark
green cloth, trimmed with fur. It was loose and
flowing, only confined round the waist by a leathern
girdle, in the manner of the dresses of the east. This
kind of dress was in fashion in Russia at that time,
though Peter afterwards, with some difficulty in-
duced the Russian nobles and citizens to give it up,
and adopt the costumes of England and France.

The change was certainly a great improvement to
our hero’s appearance ; and he began to wonder
what all this would lead to.

With evening the expected summons came, and
Gerald was conducted by a superior officer of the
household to the royal presence. The Emperor was
not now,.as when our hero first saw him seated ona
rude bench, but on a throne of state. He did not
wear the gorgeous robe in which he had attended
36 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK,

the church in the morning, for that was held sacred
to the occasion, but he was dressed in one equally
splendid. A number of nobles and ladies elegantly
attired, stood on either side of the throne, and the
blaze of light which was thrown upon the company
by means of the brilliant chandeliers, gave the whole
scene a dazzling aspect.

The Czar and his suite were greatly amused at
observing the wonder and admiration which marked
the expressive countenance of the youth, as he entered
the grand saloon. Gerald’s thoughts, were not how-
ever, long so occupied, he was too much interested in
ascertaining the object of his summons there.

‘Ha! my lad,’ exclaimed the Czar, in a familiar
tone, as Gerald bowed low before the throne, ‘ I’ve
not forgotten you, you see. Well, how did you get
on at your new Work?

‘I hope, Sire, ’ Gerald replied with modest dignity,
‘I hope, Sire, I did my ‘duty, and to the satisfaction
of your Majesty’ s officers.’

-‘ I’ve heard nothing to the contrary, at all events,’
said the Czar, ‘ but what say you to leaving off that
sort of work, ‘and taking to something else? Have
you become so fond of it that you desire to end your
days at it.’

Gerald could not help smiling at this question.
‘Nay, Sire,’ he replied, ‘I did my work cheerfully,
because I felt it to be my duty to do ‘so, and I had
moreover, an animating motive, but I should rejoice
to be engaged i in some employment: better suited to
my taste.’

‘What employment would be suited to yopr taste
the Emperor asked. ‘ Would you like to bea soldier?’

‘A soldier’s profession. ould not be quite suited
to my taste, Sire,’ Gerald % plied.

“Why ? it is thought to be the most honourable
calling by many of my subjects. I am a soldier,
myself, but I wish not to put a restraint on your
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 37

inelination—nay, should you prefer following some
useful art, I would give you all encouragement. My
nobles here know that I patronise the useful arts,
and have set them.an example by working at some
of them myself.’

‘ My inclination, Sire, has always been to pursue a
studious life,” Gerald ventured to say.

‘Ha!’ exclaimed the Czar, ‘I am now founding
a university in Moscow, would you like to enter it ?’

‘That is what I desire above all things, Sire,’ Gerald
replied with great earnestness.

‘Your desire shall be gratified then,’ cried the
Emperor, ‘I wish to serve you, but I had another
object in bringing you here. ‘I took. notice of the
account you gave me at our former meeting of your
singular deliverance from shipwreck, and I think I
have some clue to the discovery of your family.’

Gerald looked up more earnestly than ever. ‘To
enable me to discover my kindred, would indeed,
Sire, be conferring on me a favour beyond any other,’
he exclaimed with great energy.

‘Can you write ?”

‘Yes, Sire,’ I can write, though but indifferently.

My good father, Michael Kopt, taught me to write
to the best of his ability.’
. *Good—make out a clear statement then of all
you know concerning your earlier history, in writing
—hbe very particular as to dates, and send the docu-
ment to me. You may withdraw now. My servants
will attend to your comfort and provide you with
anything you ask for.’

‘Oh ! Sire,’ exclaimed the youth, bursting into a
flood of tears, ‘I can find no words to express my
gratitude. But my heart thanks you a thousand-
fold.’ : | ot ee

Peter was naturally a stern man, and not easily
moved, but he could not witness the youth’s emotions
without feeling something like a response.
38 THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

Gerald still lingered at the foot of the throne.
‘Will your Majesty pardon me if I ask the addition
of one favour more,’ he at length said, ‘it is, that
I may be permitted to send a messenger to my friends
to let them know that I am here safe under your
Majesty’s gracious protection.’

‘Aye, if that will afford you pleasure,’ returned
the emperor, smiling, and he waved his hand in
token of an adieu, |
CHAPTER X.
A HAPPY DISCOVERY.

Tae slave who waited on Gerald, told him that he
had orders from the Czar to take him to any part of
the palace and grounds he might wish to see. He
was told also, that if he would like to see the city, and
the public buildings, he should have an escort from
the Emperor’s own guards. :

Our hero gladly availed himself of these offers,
and thus spent several days very pleasantly. He
previously, however, complied with the Czar’s re-
quest regarding the particulars of his early life.

It was but little that he knew of the matter ; but
that little he stated with great clearness, both as
respected time and place. Nor did he fail to avail
himself of the license given him by the Czar to send
to his friends. He wrote a brief account of all that
had passed since his removal, and cheered them with
hopes of ere long seeing them again uhder happier
circumstances than when they had parted last.

Gerald had been at the palace about a week,
when he received a message from the Emperor,
bidding him prepare himself for an interview with a
lady who, he said, had taken a great interest in his
story. The officer who delivered the message further
informed him that the lady, whose name was Madame
Koski, was the widow of a Polish noble who had
been personally attached to the Czar; and that
having lost her property in Poland, she was now
living on a pension which was allowed her by the
Emperor. |
‘ Qur hero listened to these particulars with great
40° THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

eagerness ; for he could not help thinking that this
lady was in some way connected with his family, and
that her interest for him was owing to that circum-
stance. :

‘It is possible,’ he said to himself, ‘that I am of
Polish origin ;’ his cheek grew flushed and his eye
kindled at the thought. He had occasionally heard
portions of the history of that brave and interesting
people ; and from some cause which he could not
quite account for himself, he felt deeply concerned
in all that related to them. The Emperor of Russia
and the renowned King of Sweden, Charles XII., had
long been contending for power over the Poles; and
the principal question relating to that unhappy
country seemed to be, which of the two should be
their master.

At one time the Czar gained the ascendancy for
the King of Poland, Frederick Augustus, who was
also Elector of Saxony, was his friend and ally.
Again Charles XII. became the superior in power,
and Frederick Augustus was then obliged to abdi-
cate the throne of Poland and retire to Saxony, and
Stanislaus Leczinski was chosen in his room—a
measure which gave no satisfaction to the declining
nation.

Gerald awaited the arrival of Madame Koski with
intense anxiety. At length the door of the apart-
ment was slowly opened, and a lady dressed in the
Polish fashion appeared, leaning on the arm of a
female domestic. She glanced hurriedly at Gerald,
who immediately rose and bowed. She then motioned
with her hand for the attendant to withdraw, and
entered the room alone. |

Madame Koski was still in the meridian of life ;
but ill-health and deep grief had whitened her hair
and left such marks upon her countenance that she
had the appearance of being rather advanced in
years. She entered the room with a trembling step,
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 41

ay sunk into the seat which Gerald politely offered
er.

‘Your name,’ she said with great effort, looking
very earnestly in his face.

‘My name, Madame, is Gerald,’ he replied ; ‘ but
I am called Gerald Kopt, from one Michael Kopt,
who has been to me as a father.’

As the youth spoke, the lady became still more
agitated. ‘It must be so—I cannot be deceived,’
she murmured ; ‘ that brow—those eyes—the voice
—so like my own, own Gerald—you are—you must
be my child.’ Here she threw her arms round the
boy’s neck, and burst into a flood of tears.

‘Did I hear aright? Did you say you are my
mother ?? exclaimed Gerald, disengaging himself a
little from her embrace, that he might look up in
her countenance to read her answer even before
her tongue could speak it.

“I am,’ she answered in a calmer tone ; ‘I lost an
infant on the coast of Russia at the very time stated
_ your document ; and my heart tells me you must

e he.’

‘This is happiness beyond anything I could have
expected,’ cried Gerald, warmly returning her em-
brace. ‘I never hoped to find a mother living.’

‘And I never hoped to find my long-lost child,’
replied the lady ; ‘but God is good, and his ways
are wonderful.’

‘God has indeed been good to me, my mother,’
Gerald responded, now twining his arm fondly round
her neck ; ‘he provided me with friends who have
been as parents to me, and he has by a wonderful
provid ce, brought me here. But tell me dear
ady: mother,’ he added, his countenance
lighting up with great animation—‘ tell me ; is it
true that 1 am by birth a Pole? -

‘You are,’ Madame Koski replied ; ‘your father
was a Pole of noble birth.’ ‘
42 THH FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

‘IT have learned to call those great and noble who
perform great and noble actions, dear lady,’ cried
Gerald. ‘ But I do rejoice in hearing that I belong
to that brave and patriotic land.’

‘Ours is a fallen country,’ said the Jady despond-
ingly. ‘As for myself, she added, ‘I am obliged
to live on the bounty of the man who is desirous of
holding my country in a state of thraldum; but
the circumstances which led to it are these :—Your
father and the Czar met in early youth, and your
father had then an opportunity of rendering the
Emperor an essential service, which was repaid by
an act of equal generosity. Thus they were bound
together by ties of gratitude.’

‘Ah! and the ties of gratitude are strong,’ Gerald
warmly interposed.

‘They are, my son,’ said the lady. ‘Many years
after, when Peter of Russia and Charles of Sweden
first contended for mastery over our fallen country,
your father and the Czar met once more. Your
father was then a prisoner in Peter’s camp, and I
and my three children were without a home. Under
these circumstances, the Czar contrived to get our
children on board one of his ships, which was then
about to sail up the Baltic. I purposed joining
them ; but an accident preventing, the ship set sail
without me; and the children were only under the
care of a female slave who was their nurse. The
next tidings I heard was, that the vessel had been
wrecked, and that every one on board had perished.’

Madame Koski wept as she related these par-
ticulars ; nor could Gerald listen to them without
shedding tears also. ‘Then what became of my
father ? he asked, with breathless interest. —

‘Phe Ozar generously gave him his liberty.
Your father,’ she continued, ‘was one of those patriots
who did not take part with either the Swedes or
the Russians ; but who nobly stood out for Polish
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 43

independence and the right of electing a king
for ourselves. This being the case, he fared ill
when Charles of Sweden got the mastery ; and he
would have.done the same when Peter of Russia had
the supreme power, but for the private friendship
which I told you existed between him and the Czar.
He fell at last, however,’ and as she ceased, the lady
buried her face in her hands and wept afresh.

‘He fell in the defence of his country,’ asked
Gerald.

‘He did, dear boy.’

‘I have told the Czar that I am desirous of pur-
suing a studious life, and he has offered to place me
in the University he has recently founded in this
city. But your tale, dear mother,’ added Gerald,
‘has stirred feelings within me, which I scarcely
knew that I possessed. Surely it would be ignoble
for me to live at ease in an enemy’s land, when my
own requires my services.’

‘TI should have thought as you do, at one time,
my son,’ replied the lady; ‘but now I view the
matter otherwise. Though there are many gallant
spirits still in Poland, the power of our conquerors
is too great for us. Nothing can be done for our
unhappy country now, her freedom is entirely lost.’
CHAPTER XI.
CONCLUSION.

Mapame Kosxi, now proceeded to question Gerald
regarding his humble friends, the fisherman and his
wife, and nothing loth was he to talk of them, and of
their kindness to him. She listened with great
interest to his account of Michael’s being carried off
to the public works, and of his interview with the
Ozar, to plead for the exchange. She had heard
nothing of these particulars—she had only been told
that a youth who had been shipwrecked when an
infant, near the mouth of the Neva, was then, at the
Emperor’ s palace, and on her arrival, the paper which
Gerald had written out had been put into her hand.
Peter, on first seeing him, had himself been struck
with the resemblance he bore to his early friend, and
when Gerald proceeded to give the account of the
wreck, he immediately surmised that the son of the
Polish noble stood before him.

Though Peter was a man of fierce passions, and
had little feeling, he was known to attach himself
firmly to a few individuals. Madame Koski and her
son, therefore felt some confidence in the continuance
of his fe iendship and protection.

Gerald at last came to a determination to enter
the University, though his own inclination would now
have led him to go to his native land, and make a
stand with the few brave men who would have joined
him in another struggle fr independence. Indeed, he
did not wholly relinquish the idea, though he resolved
at present on making the most of the advantages
offered him for education, .

Previous, to his entering, however, he and his
THE FOUNDING OF THE WRECK. 45

mother took a journey to the village in which Michael
and his wife were residing. Madame Koski was
anxious to see the worthy couple who had acted so
kindly to her son, that she might have an opportu-
nity of expressing her deep gratitude, and she and
Gerald were both desirous of ascertaining whether
they could do anything to make the family more
comfortable.



The meeting was affecting, and it gave mutual
pleasure, Madame Koski was much pleased with
the fisherman’s family, especially with Margaret,
towards whom she thought she could never show
sufficient kindness in return for the motherly part
she had acted towards her friendless infant. The good
woman brought forward the clothes in which Gerald
AG THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK.

was dressed when he was first cast upon their pro-
tecting care. And if any further proof of his identity
had been needful, the sight of them would have quite
satisfied Madame Koski that he was indeed her
child. The view of the clothes, however, called forth
many painful recollections, for though Gerald was
restored to her, her two other children, who had
been equally dear were lost. She was affected too
when told of the careful manner in which the babe’s
little ark had been enclosed, in order to shelter him
from the waters. ‘Poor Jaqueline,’ she said, with
tears in her eyes, ‘you were faithful to your charge
to the very last. ‘Oh! she added, turning to her
son, ‘what a wonderful providence has followed thee,
my child, from the moment I parted from thee,
thou has never wanted a mother’s tender care.’

Madame Koski was a christian woman. She had
been taught in the rough school of adversity, and
she had learned, not only to submit with patience
to the ills of life, but to see God’s gracious and
merciful hand in all.

Madame Koski’s income was not very large, still
she insisted on sharing it with Michael and his wife,
who really stood in need of aid, though they were
unwilling to receive it from her. The good couple
had done all without any hope or prospect of reward,
but they both repeatedly declared that Gerald had
already more than repaid them for the services they
had rendered him by the generous sacrifice he had
made, which had, they said, been the means of
saving Michael’s life.

Gerald returned with his mother to Moscow, and
then commenced his studiesgwith a cheerful spirit.
He lived to be a comfort to his widowed parent, and
an ornament to society ; but he never had an oppor-
tunity of serving his country beyond what he could
do as a private individual.

Within two or three years of the time when the
THE FOUNDLING OF THE WRECK. 47

above related events took place, Peter the Great
once more gained ascendancy over the Poles, by a
victory he won over his rival Charles the Twelfth.
In consequence of this victory, Stanislaus was de-
posed and Frederick Augustus was restored to the
throne.

Most of our young readers are no doubt aware
that Poland is no longer a kingdom, but a Russian
province. Subsequently to the period of which we
have been speaking, the fall of the Polish nation
was rapid, and their final overthrow took place about
twenty years ago, under Nicholas, the present Em-
peror of Russia.

It now remains for us, young readers, to in-
quire what moral may be learned from the little
history before us. Every book we read should do
something more than amuse the fancy and interest
the feelings. It should inform our minds and teach
us some valuable lesson for practice. We have seen
that our hero’s generous action was made in the
Providence of God to lead to its own reward. Had
he not sought an interview with the Czar he would
not have discovered his mother. Again we may
observe, that circumstances do not affect the con-
duct of individuals so as to prevent the possi-
bility of their performing noble deeds. The fisher-
man and his wife practised generosity and kindness
of the highest order, lowly and poor though they
were ; and the seemingly disadvantageous situation
of the boy who was cast upon their bounty did not
prevent his achieving a truly heroic action. Think
not, therefore, that your circumstances, whatever
they may be, shut you out from the exercise of
exalted virtues, for there are no circumstances,
however unfavourable, which exclude the perform-
ance of generous and self-denying deeds,


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« Repairing the disaater.” Page 18.

London:

GROOMBRIDGE AND SONS,

PATERNOSTER ROW.
THE YOUNG ARTIST.

—_———--

Somg years ago, a poor widow of genteel appear-
ance and habits, lived, with her only child, in a
miserable garret in one of the worst streets of Paris.
The mournful cries of this poor child were one day
heard by some kind neighbours, and they hastened
to the spot from whence the sounds proceeded, to
offer their help or their sympathy.

The little boy was found sobbing hysterically by
the side of his only parent. She could no longer
clasp his hand, and without knowing what death
was, he felt that he had lost his mother. She was
breathing her last sigh when the neighbours reached
her, and, soothed by their kind words, the poor orphan
ceased to weep so bitterly ; but he could not be com-
forted, for his mother “ was not.”’

Though very poor, she had always been respected ;
but no one knew more of her history than that
when she was left .a widow, she worked for her own
maintenance, and that of her child—that they had
come from Savoy, and had no relatives in Paris.
Misfortune had softened the hearts of the bystanders,
but they were too poor to pay for the burial of the
mother, or to take charge of the child ; so they ‘all
decided that he must go to the workhouse. At
length they thought of consulting one to whom they
all had recourse in difficulties ; and they proceeded
to the shop of Mrs. Roberts. This Mrs. Roberts
6 THE YOUNG ARTIST,

was the wise-head of the neighbourhood ; and a truly
good woman she was. She had so much judgment
and experience, that no one thought of buying even
an apron or choosing a saucepan without consulting
her. She was shocked at. the idea of sending the
poor boy to the workhouse, as she had known
his mother ; and the result was, that she resolved
upon adopting the child herself. Enough money
was found to bury the poor woman, and “ Joey,” as
he called himself, was conveyed to the small room
behind the shop of his benefactress. Mrs. Roberts
had five children of her own, but she thought that
by rising an hour earlier in the morning, and work-
ing an hour later at night, she might contrive to fill
siz mouths as well as five. How true it is that the
noblest acts of charity are often performed by the poor
—their charities deduct from their necessities ; those
of the rich only subtract from their superfluities.

The little orphan was neither spoiled by indulgence
nor by neglect ; he shared all the privileges of the
family, having an equal portion of the humble treats
and judicious corrections which his foster-mother
gave to her own children. He was beloved by them
all, but especially by Philip, who was a year older
than himself, and who, therefore, defended him on
all occasions ; he was always indignant when Joey
was called “the little Savoyard,” but without well
knowing why. In due time, poor Joey gave proofs
of uncommon talent; and he then gained influence
over his companions, and they willingly yielded to
his authority. The commonest minds are often thus
influenced by stronggntellect, when accompanied by
good temper. —

When the adopted child had reached his tenth
year, his foster-mother thought it high time that he
should begin to earn his own bread. She had already
placed her own sons. out in some employment, and
THE YOUNG ARTIST. ¢

she had hit upon a grand scheme for poor Joey’s
establishment. She told him the plan that she had
formed, and to which he listened as willingly as if it
had been an introduction to a career of pleasure,
instead of one of hard work and duty. Mrs. Roberts
had decided.upon making him a shoe-cleaner, in a
public thoroughfare : the idea was quite her own,
and she felt sure that it would be a profitable em-
ployment. Already had she purchased the necessary
implements, and Joey ran eagerly to view his new
pee oe Nothing was forgotten ; a stool, two

rushes, a knife, and a bottle of blacking, some rags,
and a tub to hold water. They were gazed at,
handled, turned about, and handled again and again,
not only by Joey, but by all the children. Joey
wished to try his skill immediately upon all the dirty
shoes of the family ; and his mother decided that, if
he succeeded well in his first experiment, he should
begin forthwith to undertake the shoes of the public
at large. Aided by the advice of his companions,
Joey set to work. The first pair was a failure—he
cut off the strings by accident ; and the second pair
would not shine ; but he improved every time, and
although he cut his finger, he bore it patiently, as it
proved that his knife was very sharp. He had re-
served his friend Philip’s shoes until the very last ;
then the young artist put forth all his skill, and pro-
duced what they called his “ master-piece ;” and he
therefore, was pronounced “fit to shew off in public.”
Joey slept very indifferently that night, but he
dreamt at intervals of more than one customer who
stopped to require his services. Mrs. Roberts, with
her accustomed shrewdness, had remarked that all
the artists who daily visited the Louvre were apt to
soil their shoes in crossing an adjoining street, then
not in good repair. She, therefore, fixed upon a
corner of the square, as the spot for her son to begin
8 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

his operations. On the day appointed for the in-
stallation, all the family rose early, that they might
accompany Joey to the place appointed. The mother
carried the stool, and each of the younger ones



carried some of the apparatus. Joey, the hero and
head of the procession, alone carried nothing. He
walked proudly on towards a little recess, between
two high buttresses of the wall, and then took pos-
session of his seat, like some mighty conqueror who
had taken a fortress! On first proposing this plan,
Mrs. Roberts had again repeated to him her small
code of religion and mor@lity, in the following
precepts :—

‘Thank God for the food he bestows upon you.

‘ Never tell a lie, even to gain bread.
THE YOUNG ARTIST. : 9

‘Earn your living honestly, or it will profit you
nothing, and

‘When you grow old, repay to your friends what
they have done for you in your infancy.’ .

Mrs. Roberts was not blessed with eloquence, but
the principles that had governed her were upright
and solid, and such as she thought fit to guide her
children in their humble path. :

On the present occasion, her recommendations and
advice were merely of a prudential kind ; such as :—
‘Not to quit his post, and not to eat, at one time,
what was intended for the whole day ;’ then she
gave him a little basket containing his provisions,
and departed with the ‘children, not, however, with-
out turning round several times to see how Joey
looked in his new situation. It was with great
delight that they saw a customer approach him with
a pair of boots to clean : it was evidently some ser-
vant, who thus intended to save himself trouble, and
get his master’s boots cleaned by deputy. The good
woman hastened home, and with a light heart re-
sumed her customary occupations ; but not without
a secret longing to have a peep at Joey, to see how
he was getting on; and when Philip swallowed his
dinner in haste to run off to the Louvre, to see his
friend, she did not reprove him, and rejoiced to see
him return with a smiling face, quite radiant with
satisfaction !

It was a memorable evening, that of Joey’s return ;
and when the children saw him approach, they ran
to relieve him of his baggage. He began an account
of his adventures; but suddenly stopped, to draw
from his pocket a bit of rag, in which he had care-
fully wrapped up his day’s earnings, and which he
ieee with inexpressible pride and delight, to

is kind foster-mother. He continued to devote
himself so assiduously to his useful occupation, that
10 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

he became quite celebrated for his skill: his example
was soon followed in different parts of Paris, but
Joseph Berr had always as much as he could do;
and he had the honour of being the acknowledged
founder of so useful and convenient an occupation.
His good conduct obtained him the favour of all his
customers ; and after dark, he went errands and
carried parcels; and although exposed to various
temptations, he resisted all, in order to carry home
more money to his kind benefactress. As a good
reputation depends entirely upon ourselves, Joey,
who really wished to do right, succeeded so well,
that in the course of a year, his conduct obtained
him a valuable friend. Near our little hero’s place
of business, there was not only a very tempting cake-
shop, but one with a large collection of paints,
brushes, and canvas, and an assortment of every-
thing an artist could desire. This shop was kept by
a Mr. Barbe ; and as he was the friend and patron
of many poor young artists, they made it a kind of
rendezvous. Barbe placed unsold pictures in -his
arret, to accommodate those who had painted them ;
he furnished colours and canvas on trust to others,
and lent a palette or an easel to another who could
not afford to buy one. He was as interested in these
or fellows, as if they had been his own relations.
rs. Barbe seconded him in all these kind doings,
and sympathized in his tastes and occupations in a
manner worthy of all praise. She was, perhaps, a little
tyrannical towards Gabri, the principal assistant to
her husband ; but he bore with her patiently, as she
had acknowledged that to this excellent servant her
husband’s success was principally due. This worthy
Gabri, however, had suffered domestic misfortunes
which had saddened his whole life. He had lost; in
six weeks, both his wife and children, by small-pox,
and for years afterwards, this morose-looking man
THE YOUNG’ ARTIST. j1

could not speak of them without tears: ‘ They were
lovely to look upon,’ he would say, and then he could
add no more. With so feeling a heart, he could not
behold the active little Joey without the deepest
interest. He watched his whole behaviour, and
approved of all his conduct, until he became strongly
attached to the little orphan ; and this meritorious
child thus obtained a humble, but a lasting and use-
ful friend. Gabri was not satisfied with loving him,
he was determined, if possible, to place this boy in a
better position in life—in one where his abilities
could be turned to good account; and after a little
talk with Mrs. Legrés, of the cake-shop, they devised
a little scheme for his benefit.

Mrs. Legrés was intimate with her neighbour
Mrs. Barbe, and often called to have a chat with
her ; and one morning, as had been arranged with
Gabri, she appeared with a nice rich cake in her
hand, when Barbe’s shop was filled with customers,
‘ Well, neighbour,’ said she, ‘how does business go on
this week ? |

‘Pretty well,’ answered Mrs. Barbe, still continu-
ing to fill bladders of colour.

Several customers came in, when Mrs. Legrés took
occasion to remark, that there really seemed too
much for them to do, and that they needed some
young and active assistant.

‘That’ is true enough,’ replied Mrs. Barbe, ‘but
where could we meet with a steady, well-behaved
boy, who would not want high wages ?’

‘Mrs. Legrés was ready with her reply, but she
feared to be too eager.

Just at that moment Gabri was carrying a tray of
various bottles, when his mistress exclaimed ‘ Mercy,
Gabri, you carry too much at once.!’ The -sbrill
voice startled him, down fel? the tray and the thifigs
rolled all over the shop.
12 . THE YOUNG ARTIST.

‘What a subject for a picture!’ exclaimed a
young artist, observing the varied expression on
each countenance, with the floor strewed and all the
things swiming in oil ; ‘ I must take a sketch.’

Meanwhile Gabri was engaged repairing the mis-
chief, and forgot to attend to the artist, who then
told Mrs. Barbe, that ‘she must have more persons
to serve, as their shop was in such great repute.’

This suggestion came most apropos to Gabri’s
wishes, and Mrs. Legrés was charged to look out for
a clever lad, who was both active and trustworthy,
and whosé parents would let him come as an ap-
prentice. 3

In due time, Mrs. Roberts called with her little
protegé, dressed in his best, and Mrs. Barbe became
much interested in the orphan; it was therefore
agreed upon, that he should give his services for
seven years, and receive board and lodging during
that time, and that his mother must engage to clothe
him respectably. The latter proviso would have been
a difficulty, had not the good old Gabri promised to
supply him with clothing, in a private communica-
tion with Mrs. Roberts. Joseph Berr, as we must
now call him, was soon settled in his new situation,
and by his intelligence and activity, he obtained the
approbation and confidence of his employers. He
had an excellent memory, and Gabri afforded him
every assistance in learning the names of every
material which was asked for in his extensive store-
house. When the apprentice was shown his bed-room,
he felt as if a small paradise awaited him. He had
hitherto only had a third ofa loft in his foster-mother’s
house, and here was a nice white-washed room, with
a window—a window which would afford him light
enough to draw by, if he rose at dawn. He had
alwys felt a great desire to draw, and he thought, if
nothing else offered, he could draw with black chalk
THE YOUNG ARTIBT. 13

on his white-washed walls ; what a pleasure it would
be to ornament his room with horses, soldiers, and
trees! His taste for drawing was much increased
by the conversation of the young artists who fre-
quented the shop, but his genius might never have
been developed but for an accident which befel him.
As the hidden fire in a flint can only be excited by a
stroke given to it.

Among Mr. Barbe’s artist customers, there was
one who always showed great interest in Joseph;
this was a Mr. Enguehard, who was fond of en-
couraging youthful talent; he was not rich, for
though a celebrated engraver, a disease in his eyes
had compelled him to relinquish his profession, and
retire on a very moderate fortune, and, assisted by
his wife, he devoted himself to the education of
their only son Francisco. This son was destined for
an artist, and he had already shown sufficient talent
to gratify his father’s dearest wish. He was, however,
too fond of pleasure, and his progress was slow, and
he was very wasteful of his time, his books, his paper
and expensive materials which were liberally pro-
cured by his father, at the sacrifice of many domestic
luxuries. Mr. Enguehard having observed the in-
dustry and intelligence of Joseph Berr, he felt dis-
pe to encourage his intimacy with his son. He

ad once heard him regret that he had received no
education to fit him for an artist, and this induced
Mr. Enguehard to propose that his evenings, when
business was over, should be spent at his house, feel-
ing as he did that the advantage would be mutual.
Further inquiries concerning Joseph’s habits con-
firmed his intention, and he proposed, too, that
Joseph should spend his Sundays with Francisco.
This privilege -was joyously embraced by the young
apprentice, and Francisco promised to teach him al
he knew, but, ‘Beware,’ said he to Joseph, ‘if you
14 THE YOUNG ARTIST,

don’t write well I shall rap your knuckles!’ Joseph
smiled at this threat, well convinced that he should
never fail in attention at least. Francisco soon found
that he had no reproof to give, even in jest, and to
preserve his own dignity, and to keep up the re-
quisite distance between teacher and pupil, he had
to study hard himself, and this exertion had such
manifest advantages, that Mr. Enguehard felt. that
he was the obliged party. Joseph’s abilities were
first-rate,and opportunity alone was wanting for their
development.

. Mr. Enguehard interested these boys in the lives
and experiences of the old masters, and related facts
which stimulated their industry. ‘ Almost all these
men,’ said he, ‘showed marks of genius, even in
childhood. Lanfranc, one of the most skilful pupils
of the Carracci, when in the service of Count Scoti,
used to draw in chalk upon the walls, his paper being
insufficient to contain all his bright ideas, Philippe
of Champagne, who died president of the academy,
used to copy all the engravings he met with when
only nine years old; and Claude Gelée, surnamed
Lorraine, was once employed by an artist to grind
his colours and clean his palette, but by his genius
he surmounted every difficulty, and ultimately be-
came the finest landscape painter on record, and
his paintings now adorn our best galleries.’

On hearing this, with breathless attention, poor
Joseph exclaimed, ‘Why shouldn’t I? and, why
shouldn’t I?’ Francisco burst out laughing in spite
of Joseph’s blushes at having spoken out his thoughts.
Mr. Enguehard sent the boys out to play, but he
ruminated much on the desire he felt that this
enthusiasm of genius should have its full encourage-
ment. He feared to disturb this paor youth in his
pe position, yet he longed to afford aid to

eaven-born genius. As for poor Joseph, he could
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 15

dream of nothing but Claude Lorraine, and for want
of country scenes to represent, he made rude sketches
on his bed-room walls, of different passages in history
which he read with Francisco. His constant visits
to artists’ studios with the different articles he
carried to them, still more inflamed his desire
for painting, and it was with deep regret that he
could only employ black chalk on white walls to
carry out his fine ideas. Gabri was alone in the
secret, and he was not tempted to betray him, but
alas! an accident happened which all his prudence
could not foresee, and which occasioned poor Joseph
many bitter tears.

In the French Academy of Painting, before an
artist can try for the great prize, which furnishes
him with funds to go to Rome at the expense of
government, he has to make a first essay, by painting
a full length figure on a given subject, and then
another trial by six or eight competitors, who are
shut up alone to begin and complete a certain picture.

A young artist, to whom Mr. Barbe had been very
kind, brought his picture to the shop to be viewed
by his friends and rivals too, who generally sympathize
with the successful candidate after the first moment
of disappointment is over,—provided they are of the
same school. Joseph was a witness of all the com-

liments which were lavished upon the young pupil ;

e was envious, but with that noble kind of envy
which made Cesar weep at the foot of Alexander’s
statue. .He poured out his grief to his friend Gabri,
—‘Look at that young man, he is only fifteen ;
Claude Lorraine was once no better off than I,—
I do really think there is some talent in me !’—
Poor old Gabri did not know anything about Claude
Lorraine, but he tried to console Joseph, and promised
to satisfy the wish that was most easily accomplished,
that of obtaining for him an entrance to the exhibi-
16 THE YOUNG ARTIBT.

tion of pictures at the Louvre. Joseph longed to see
all the subjects which had been extolled or criticised
by the loungers at Mr. Barbe’s shop, and one day he
had ventured to the door of the gallery, but the
pate raised his cane at the poor boy, which made
‘im take: to his heels. All classes are adinitted,
workmen and soldiers even, but a poor boy with
trousers daubed with every colour in Barbe’s shop and
a.torn jacket was not likely to find favour with a .
bedizened porter. He therefore told his troubles tu
Gabri, who proceeded to remove them. Francisco had
iven his friend a jacket he’ had out-grown, and
hilip, his foster-brother, being apprenticed to -#
_ tealor, en to alter a pair of Gabri’s trousers ;
these, with a new hat and # waistcoat, the gift of
Mrs. Roberts, equipped our young aspirant for his
_ entrance into the paradise of his imagination.
Rather excited with his anticipations, he determined
upon’ gratifying himeelf with another view of the
picture whioh had gained a prize, which now stood
om high shelf, with its face to the wall. Being
quite: alone, he mounted on the top of a ladder, but
seiroely: had he turned the picture, when he heard
the ehvill voice of Mrs. Barbe calling to him. In his
haste ito obey, he knocked the picture down, and in
its fall it grazed against a box, and the paint which
was still wet, was quite effaced at one side—a whole
foot of the figure-was rubbed off! ‘What shoyld
he do? What would Mrs. Barbe say ? What would
beeorme of him if the young artist came for his
te now, and how sorry he would be? If they
interrogated him, he must tell the truth’ He was
in despair, and he feared he should be dismissed in

Phere was, however, no resource at present but
that of taking the pe up to his own room until:
he had time to think what was for the best; the
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 17

idea having entered his mind that he might be able
to repair the injury. 5

_ It:will almost seem incredible that a boy of thirteen
should think of repairing a picture, but Joseph, as
we have said before, was possessed of an uncommon
talent, and he had lived among artists, and all he
had seen lately had reference to painting. It is not,
however, without frequent example that talent and
observation tending to one point. will produce extra-
ordinary efforts. It is related, that some years ago,
when snow fell at Florence, the little Italian boys
Gollected it, and formed some statues which bore.a
strong resemblance to the master-pieces. they had
seen. So,much influence oniigfant angnds has the
atmosphere of art around theme work, however,
which Joseph had to repair, tyasthat of a youth of
fifteen, and therefore not faultless. He had seen
énough of painting to be able to manage a palette,
but what was he to do for colours and brushes ;
although surrounded by them, they were. not his;
and his conscience was too delicate even to borrow:
them, he therefore resolved to borrow money of
his friend Franciseo to purchase them. He would
have had recourse to his guardian angel, Gabri,
but Gabri had gone for a holiday to his native place,
fot some unknown purpose, and as Mrs. Barbe had
not been taken into his. confidence, this and his ab-
sence had made her unusually out of temper.

Gabri was to return in a day or two, but to
\wait for him was impossible, as Sunday was the
only day Joseph had to himself. He went then to
Mr. Engue! ’s, and having found Francisco aloné;
he confided to him his great difficulty. Francisog
was alarmed at his friend’s accident, and equally 80
at the temerity of endeavouring to repaint the fovt ;
he lent the money: ee and though it was only
4s, 6d. yet it sufficed for his purpose ; theré was no



18 THE YOUNG ARTISY.

question about an easel or a box’of:colours. The
purchases were made ata distant.shop, and concealed
in his room until wanted. Joseph was'so full of his
enterprise, that he scarcely enjoyed his new dress
which Philip brought him at night, tied in a-hand-
kerchief as tailors usually do. The poor boy had
expected such ecstasies, especially at: the“ invisible
seams,” which, however, were visible enough, that
he was persuaded Joey was ill, for he never could
blame him for anything. Awake at the first dawn
of day, Joseph felt at first nothing but the pleasute
of wielding his palette and brushes; and lingered
over the manner.of settling them artistically. When
all: was prepared,.then came the: difficulty, and: he
a with emotion and mistrust, at length the
ppy idea occurred to him that he might copy his
own foot. ‘The greatest artists take nature for their
model, why should: not.I place my foot so that I
can copy it upon the canvass.’ By degrees his
enthusiasm and confidence augmented, and.as he
drew he fancied he might draw like Raphael, and
pout like Rubens; his hand, timid at first became
id,and he never stopped until he had repaired
the mischief. After this he waited for.a convenient
opportunity to replace the picture in its former
position. It was late before Mr. and Mrs. Barbe
went out to walk, he then returned the picture.
safely, and availed himself of his new clothes to
gain entrance to the gallery of the Louvre.
. Joseph had never entered a larger building than
the church of St. Roch, and the dimensions.of the
staircase and columns of marble, and.the crowd of
people a ‘on the richly-covered walls were daz-
aling to behold. . He seemed to look without seeing,
and walk without. thinking, until. he was carried: by.
the crowd to the door of the immense gallery oon-
‘taining the works of the'ancient-masters: Atxthe
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 19

first sight of this magnificent spectacle, magnificent
even. aan who hate been used to such things, he
was struck with a feeling of reverence and awe, and
he involuntarily raised his hat and bowed as a mark
of respect. This room was not crowded, as the annual
exhibition now attracted the multitude. Joseph
was able to enjoy the pictures without being pushed
about; but he saw many which failed to interest
him.as he was ignorant of their design; but at
last he was arrested by. that renowned picture of
Raphael’s, representing the Virgin Mary seated with
the infant Jesus on her knee. ‘The figures were
easily recognized, and Joseph felt himself among
habitual acquaintances ; he had seen altar-pieces,
and other holy pictures, but this one absorbed him
entirely. The infant Jesus seemed to smile upon
him, and leaning on the balustrade, he extended his
arms towards it, and smiled also; absorbed in his
own sensations, he was not aware that he was re-
marked until a slight movement aroused him, and
then he saw some one gazing at him with attention.
It was an artist of eminence, who being struck with
Jogeph’s eager and rapt admiration, had determined
on speaking to him. He led him into conversation,
and paraed from the candid youth his name, his
occupation, and his ardent hopes for the future. The
stranger perceived the germs of genius in his simple
criticisms of the great masters, and he felt so deeply
interested in the young amateur, that he gave him
his address, and told him to call upon him, and ‘he
would see if he could not be of use to him.’ ;
Joseph stood penetrated with joy and gratitude,
for he knew that he was speaking to one of the first
artists of the day. It was long before the excite-
ment. of this adventure had passed. away : then the
poor lad remembered.that he was still in the ‘service
of Mr. Barbe, and that he had done something which
20 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

if found out, would occasion his dismissal, and cause
much sorrow to his good friend Gabri and his foster-
mother.

Alas! the moment Joseph entered the house he
perceived too well that his misfortune had been dis-
covered ; kind Mr. Barbe, who was walking up and
down came up to him with a face of despair ; but
Mrs. Barbe’s anger was violent.

‘Ah, you good-for-nothing fellow, you are very
punctual ; but I wonder you are not ashamed to
shew your face.’ ,

‘I am very sorry,’. stammered out Joseph.

‘Don’t interrupt me, little viper that you are,
that bites the people that have warmed and fed him.
I would have forgiven you for being idle and un-
grateful, if you had not ruined the reputation of the
house by destroying pictures confided to our care.
Not only have you spoiled a superb picture, but you
have been base enough to steal our materials.’

Struck with indignation at this unjust accusation,
the poor fellow appealed to his master, and protested
his innocence of that part of the charge ; but his tears
and his protestations produced no effect upon his pre-
judiced hearers. Having had occasion to go to the
shop, Mr. Barbe had taken a look at the picture, and
in a moment he beheld the disaster. Poor Joseph
had copied his left foot, being more convenient to
him, without having noticed that it was the right
which was effaced, thus the great toe was outside,
They then visited the garret, and found the palette
and colours still freshly used, and which betrayed the
young artist. Mr. Barbe would have pardoned the
spoiling of the picture, but a theft was revolting to
his honest heart, and it was impossible not to sus-
pect Joseph as they knew nothing of his acquaint-
ance with Francisco, and they were sure that he had
not any money at his own disposal. Mrs. Barbe
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 21

would have turned him out that very night, but her
husband positively declared that he should pass the
night there. She satisfied her anger by asking in
two or three friends, to whom she displayed the
picture with the left foot on the right leg ; at the



same time pointing to the culprit, who sat sobbing
inacorner. No ill-natured remarks were spared,
and as if they were intended to have a good moral
effect they were pronounced in a loud, distinct, and
sermonizing tone. ‘Certainly,’ said one, ‘it was a
good thing his mother died, poor woman, for she did
not deserve a child like that !? ‘I always predicted
it ; said another, ‘that comes of picking up little
22 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

vagabonds ; but Mrs. Roberts was always obstinate,
and what else could you expect’? A third suggested
that ‘Mrs. Barbe must take care and lock up every-
thing, and keep a strict watch upon him.’ In fact,

their cruelty was carried to such lengths, that Mr.

Barbe hearing the poor boy’s sobs and groans, went
up to him, and ordered him off to bed. Joseph
passed a miserable night. In a few hours he felt he
should be turned off without a character, and forced
to return to his foster-mother without any means
of subsistence, and with the weight of theft upon his
back. One hope alone remained to him, Francisco
could give evidence of his truth and honesty, and
he determined upon asking Mr. Barbe to go and
question Francisco, who would prove his innocence ;

but this resource failed him. Early in the morning Mr.
Barbe had been to Mr. Enguehard’s house, and wish-
ing to screen his favourite, he had merely asked, ‘ if
Francisco had lent Joseph any money?’ Mr. En-
guehard was sure he had not, and hence Mr. Barbe
returned convinced of the necessity of dismissing
his apprentice. Mrs. Barbe was fond of a scene,
and therefore she determined that Joseph should
apologize in public for his misconduct before the
young artist whose picture he had spoiled. He was
not sorry for this little respite, and sat down in the
shop by the side of his little bundle, looking with
regret upon things he should never more behold,
and grieving over the absence of his good friend,
who would have believed in his innocence. While
he was thus sitting there, the postman arrived with
a letter for Mr. Barbe. ‘It is from Gabri ;’ cried he,
“what can he be writing about ?? And Mrs, Barbe, in
her impatience, looked over her husband’s shoulder.
‘God be thanked !’ cried she, ‘ this absurdity will not
take place.’ ‘Look here, sir,’ speaking to Joseph,

‘see what a punishment your infamous conduct has
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 23

brought upon you !’ and then she read aloud the
following letter :

“JT write to you, Mr. Barbe, although I expect to
return to-morrow, because I wish to declare in an
authentic manner my intentions towards the young
Joseph Berr, your apprentice. I have lost my own
dear wife, Mr. Barbe, and three children, three lovely
boys, whom God took to himself, which you know
well. I have placed, from time to time, my little
savings in the hands of a friend, they amount to
about £80, which I purpose bestowing upon my
little favourite Joseph, that he may fulfil his earnest
wish of becoming an artist. I enclose a deed with
my signature, and remain, Os

“ Your obedient servant,
“ SEBASTIAN GABRI.”

The second paper contained the following :

“ Joseph Berr requiring a small sum of money to
enable him to study painting for four years under
some good master, I bestow upon him the money re-
quisite, on condition that he will reimburse me when
he shall be enabled to realize sufficient for his own
maintenance. I enclose also £5, as compensation
for his services to Mr. Barbe. Signed as above,

S. G.”

It is easy to imagine the anguish of poor Joseph
during the reading of these papers. His dear, good,
kind Gabri, his tender and generous friend would
be shocked to hear the charges against him, and
what a reward for his sacrifice. But Joseph was
not guilty, and his trials were about to end. When
Francisco heard of Mr. Barbe’s visit, he confessed
to his father that he had lent his friend Joseph all
his money, and for what purpose ; he conjured his
father to take him to Mr. Barbe’s shop, and there he
boldly went forward to justify and acquit his friend.
24 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

While Mrs. Barbe exclaimed, ‘ It’s very strange in-
deed !? and Mr. Barbe wiped his eyes, the two boys
embraced affectionately. Just then the owner of the
picture arrived, and with him his worthy master,
who proved to be the kind artist who had spoken to
Joseph at the Louvre ; hesexamined the picture for
some time in silence, and then said, ‘ Make haste,
or this lad will soon get before you!’ This worthy
man, whose heart was equal to his genius, was fully
capable of appreciating the generous action of the
poor old Gabrr ; he read the letter, and having erased
the sum destined for ‘some good master,’ he said,
‘at least he must let me teach him all I know.’ One
can easily imagine that everything was amicably
settled. Mrs. Barbe was intimidated by the presence
of the artist, and poor Joseph was raised at once
from the depths of sorrow and humiliation, to a
height beyond all his fondest hopes.

Mrs. Barbe accepted the compensation for his
services, but Mr. Barbe gave Joseph his first box of
colours. Mrs. Roberts was rather surprised and
disappointed at Joseph’s choice ; but she could not
oppose it, and she was quite reconciled when she
found he was coming to live with her. ‘In fact,’
said she, ‘ one situation is much like another, but I
am sorry the apprenticeship will be so long.’ She
and Mrs. Legrés often consulted the cards to find if
Joseph would become a government painter, which
they considered the height of the profession.

To complete Joseph’s happiness, Mr. Enguehard
induced Mr. G—— to receive his son as a pupil:
thus the two friends were united, and following the
same career with equal ardour, although with dif-
ferent success, without any diminution of their
affection and friendship.

Those who are curious to know if Joseph fulfilled
all the hopes that his childhood promised, may learn
by reading the Second Part of his history.
SECOND PART.

NorHIN@ is more agreeable than the life which a
right-minded young artist leads ; without reference
to future success or future glory, the mere occupa-
tion is delightful in itself. To Joseph it was
peculiarly so, as he worked with his dear friend
Francisco, and felt that by his present exertions,
he was raising himself to a higher position in
society, and one in which he could employ that
talent which he modestly believed had been bestowed
upon him for some good purpose. Joseph redoubled
his attentions towards his foster-mother and Gabri ;
and the latter employed some part of his money in
hiring a room in the same house with Mrs. Roberts,
that Joseph might have it all to himself. Joseph
rose at dawn, and devoted his time in copying dili-
gently the drawings which his master lent him.
After a hasty breakfast, he repaired to the studio,
and remained there until five o’clock. He was often
invited to dine with Mr. Enguehard, who delighted
in giving him all the information in his power, and
he lent him books that he might study history
and mythology, both essential to an artist—but,
indeed, what information is not? voyages, travels,
science, all serve to enlarge the mind, and all afford
subjects for the pencil. During the winter, the
young pupils of Mr. G: went to draw by lamp-
light from seven until ten, at a room hired by the
students of different masters, and where they all
joined in the expenses for light and for models.
Their masters often attended there, to give advice
er encouragement. Not unfrequently were these


26 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

meetings the scene of much drollery ; and woe to
him who had any peculiarities of habit or manner ;
he was sure to be quizzed out of them ; if any were
mean or sordid, they were sure to be corrected ; and
where the aim of all was to imitate the good and
the beautiful, we may be sure that it was sometimes
attained. Joseph had occasional visions of a period
when the name of Berr would be pronounced with
respect, and when his pictures might be found in the
cabinets of the curious; but his gratitude to his
foster-mother and to Gabri was his predominant
stimulus, and he was always first and last at the
Academy. It grieved him to see how often Francisco
wasted his time, but he had talent enough to keep
himself in the second rank of his companions. At
the end of a year, Joseph began to paint from nature
sufficiently well to try his hand at portraits; and
he seized this means eagerly, as one by which he
might be less of a burden upon Gabri. Mrs. Roberts
begged one of her relations ‘to have her face
painted ;’ assuring her that Joseph ‘was pretty
clever at his business:’ and her cousin consented to
sit, provided ‘she had her lace cap and cornelian ear-
rings well represented.’ This picture produced great
effect : the likeness was good, and as for the ear-rings,
you could ‘almost hold them in your fingers.’ For
this work, the young artist received numerous compli-
ments, ten shillings in cash, and so many orders for
portraits, that before the end ofthe year, he was able
to repay Gabri for the hire of the room, and his mother
for his board. The more skilful he became, the better
pay he received ; and as he was not too proud to
paint signs, he ornamented several of the shops of
Paris with some really good drawings. All Mr.
G—’s lectures were listened to by Joseph with
profound attention : he wrote down recollections of
them before he went to bed. One sentence he well
THE YOUNG ARTIST, 27

remembered, as the true definition of an artist :—
‘Three things are necessary for one who devotes
himself to the fine arts. Genius to conceive, taste to
select, and talent to execute.’ Joseph did not think
he was a genius, but he thought that he could obtain
the other two by attention and industry. His suc-
cess delighted poor old Gabri, who often went to his
room, stood behind his chair to gaze at his pictures,
and then with some approving taps upon his back,
he would go off to talk with Mrs. Roberts about
their dear ‘ Joey.” |

One morning Mr. G—— announced to his pupils
that a new-comer was expected: he recommended
him to their attention, by requesting that they would
not be too hard upon him at first. ‘No tricks, no
practical jokes, if you please gentlemen ; he is very
young and unaccustomed to your ways. He comes
to me from a school of design in the town of Angers.
Friend Berr, let him sit by you ; and you, Enguehard,
don’t play the Parisian with the stranger.’. .

Francisco smiled, but did not reply. The speech
of Mr, G- had its ordinary effect ; a desire seized
all the party to torment the new-comer and
especially Francisco.

‘Ah,’ said he, ‘a provincial pupil—we have not
had one before ; he will be a curiosity. Just as if I
should not amuse myself with this Raphael from
Angers ;’ and encouraged by the laughter of: his com-
panions, he made a grotesque sketch upon the wall,
which he assured them was a portrait of the Angerin.

‘We must preserve that name,’ said a companion
of Francisco’s, who encouraged him in all his folly.
‘A name is such a distinction.’

‘Pardon me,’ said Francisco, ‘we have all our
names. Am I not the Badger, and Berr the Phenix?
But listen, I'll tell you what we will do,’ and then
he whispered to his companion.

Joseph ventured a few words in favour of the


28 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

country lad, but they only laughed at him ; so he
thought he would reserve his influence until it was
needed to prevent the poor fellow being teased to
death. :

Schools of design, in different provincial towns,
have been established for some years in France ; and
to them is due that pervading good taste in a humble
class, and the superior designs they employ for com-
mon household utensils. Any youth with a taste for
art can obtain instruction at a trifling expense ; and
the one who shows most talent is drafted off, and
sent, at the expense of the town, to the metropolitan
academy. :

The professors had chosen the young man whom
Francisco expected with so much delight, and who
was to afford a rich treat to the whole party. This
young student had been directed by a master who
had a passion for the old school of painting, its faults
as well as its merits. Unfortunately, the candidate
was short and ill-made, and very humbly clothed ;
and there really was sufficient likeness in the carica-
ture Francisco had made, to cause the whole party
to laugh at his entrance. No sooner had he advanced
into the academy, than shouts and huzzas greeted
him, and two deputies advanced to receive him with
ironical and extravagant politeness. |

‘Sir, your reputation has preceded you,’ said they,
‘the suffrage of your native town is not sufficient for
your merit, and you have come to receive that of
Paris, and ours you have already acquired. The
name of Angerin is already celebrated ; add to it
another, and like that of Claude Lorraine, it will
descend to posterity.’

‘But gentlemen,’ said the poor sufferer, in a
drawling provincial tone—‘ But gentlemen, my name
is not Angerin ; my father and myself are both called
Valentin Gri-man-diére.’ |

This odd name, and the still more strange accent
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 29

ij il i A \ 3
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AHA MALAY \
| ih Ty |

mn

Ss

wt |
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~~

ed © ATIMPER Se.



with which it was pronounced, and which it is
difficult to conceive by any one who has not been in
Anjou, only increased the universal desire to laugh.
Francisco resumed,—

‘TI must observe, Sir, that great painters are sel-
dom known by their real names ; we say Domenichino,
Guercino, Il Spagnoletto, and certainly it is not
therefore surprising that you should be named
Angerin.’ |

‘But gentlemen,’ replied the simple young man,
you are really too polite ; I don’t deserve ;

‘You deserve everything from us, most illustrious
companion. Gentlemen, allow me to introduce to
you the glory of the Angerine Academy. He will


30 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

soon exhibit his talents, after he has paid his
entrance-fee.’ —

The poor Angerin, stunned with this torrent of
words and shouts of laughter, dared neither to
resist nor reply. He had come early, to avoid
seeing the whole party at once, but Francisco had
anticipated this; and therefore the whole set had
arrived, with the exception of Joseph Berr, who was
detained at home to finish a picture: thus the poor
fellow stood a victim, without one person to take his
part. Although he had been announced as a painter,
Mr. G—— had begged he would draw something
first, that he might be enabled to judge of his
capability. |

‘Sit down here,’ said Francisco, pointing to an
empty seat. ‘It is in a good light, and it is always
a choice place.’ —

As the best ‘studios were always crowded, the seats
of the pupils were arranged one above another ; the
lowest on a small form, for the next row, chairs
were used, and the next high stools, and still higher
stools for those who painted and required easels.
The place assigned to the new candidate was on the
lowest form, below two students, who made use of
his head to lean their boards upon, and obliged him
to stoop—a most awkward position for one who had
to copy a model placed on a table two or three feet
above him; besides, the young artist above him
made believe to efface his drawing, and crumbled
bread over it, and then shook the crumbs over the
drawing of the patient Angerin. Little bullets of
bread were shot at him from hands so skilful, that
no one seemed to shoot them—all were busy drawing.
The conversation went on as usual, the elder pupils
thinking no longer of the new-comer. The new-
comer, oppressed and unable to use his pencil, almost
wept to think how disgraceful his first effort must
THE YOUNG ARTIST. ol

appear, and what an opinion Mr. G—— must form
of his talents. Taking courage, he asks his right
hand neighbour to lend him a knife—no answer.
Again he tried, but he appeared to be deaf. The
poor fellow applied to the student on the left, he
answered him in latin—in fact, all the tricks were
played off upon him that were once so common in
schools to a new comer. At this pie Joseph.
Berr appeared.

‘Ah, Phoenix, Phoenix, how. late you are, and
there is no room for you to paint,’ cried the pupils.
eT shall not paint this week,’ replied Joseph,
looking round him, ‘ who will lend me his seat, and
I will Jet him have my model ?”

‘I; let me!’ cried several voices.

; Come,’ he continued, for he saw ata glance the
state of affairs, ‘Come, Martin,’ and he addressed
the one who sat next to the stranger, ‘ Let me sit in
your place.’

This request was , complied with, and J oseph by a a
look made them raise their boards "from the poor fel-
low’s back. Then he borrowed a sheet of paper from
him, and by a few kind words, Joseph succeeded in
cheering him up a little. When the interval for
relaxation came, some grand scheme was about to
be formed, when Joseph walked up to the mis-
chievous group, and said, ‘ No, no, gentlemen, leave
the poor fellow alone ; he’s not a sharp Parisian who
could defend himself —have mercy on him for my
sake—I come from a greater distance, and you have
always been kind companions to me.’

_ Joseph was so much beloved, and had such an
ascendancy over his companions that they did not
enjoy a joke if he disapproved of it, so they resigned
their projected attack on the Angerin—his nick-
name alone remaining. He was so really good and
obliging that no one thought of tormenting him any
32 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

more, and he ended by liking them all; but Joseph
was his friend, and for him he would have gone
through fire and. water. |

It is now our painful duty to relate an instance in
which our good Joseph was much to blame, how
much remains for our readers to judge.

During the summer it was the custom for the
young men to have walking parties into the country,
of a very inexpensive kind. They set off early in
the morning, and returned at night. Joseph seldom
joined these parties, but the festival of St. Cloud
was at hand, and Francisco proposed that on that
day they should go and see the great fountains
play. These wonders Joseph had never seen, he
therefore consented readily to join the party. This
sight is always very attractive to Parisians, and to
Joseph Berr especially, who knew so little beyond
his own circle, it was a treat he anticipated with
great pleasure. They were all to dine at St. Cloud,
and share the expense among them. Joseph ac-
quainted his foster-mother with their scheme, and the
woman loved him too much to oppose his going ; but
she gave him a great deal of advice, and following
him to the door entreated him to take care of his
purse, and not to get into any quarrel with the
people at the fair.

The young party of students had a merry walk, by
turns amusing themselves with remarks upon the
various carriages, horses, and carts, and foot-passen-
gers, like themselves, who were all going the same
road. When they reached St. Cloud they enjoyed a
hearty but simple breakfast, reserving themselves
and their money for a more luxurious dinner.
Then they traversed the fair, and visited all the
booths, admired the fountains, the orchestra, the
Punch plays, and conjurors, as well as the rest of the
spectators who annually laugh at the same absurdi-
THE YOUNG ARTIST, 33

ties. They encountered several times a troop of
young students of another master, their rivals in
glory and talent. By a very singular kind of party-
spirit, whenever they met thus, they were always
established rivals and enemies. As if to do honour
to their masters and maintain their superiority they
had frequently shown great animosity to each other,
as a body, though there did not exist the slightest
individual aversion. Upon this occasion they looked
at each other.

‘Ah! Ah!’ gaid the companions of Joseph, ‘here
come the princes of daubs and scratches.’

*Yes, gentlemen,’ retorted the others, ‘ready to
admire your spinach and eggs.’

Kach sneered at the other, but they passed on
without further insults. When they returned to the
inn, after great fatigue, they were quite ready for
their dainty repast, and compared with their cus-
tomary spare diet, they looked upon this as a feast ;
but at which perhaps some young men would have
sneered. Their dinner was served in what was called
the garden, a small enclosure, surrounded by a wall
and covered with trellis-work, beneath which were
benches and tables. The trellis-work was covered
with honey-suckles and vines, and offered a most
agreeable shade. It was very warm weather, and
the hotel was crowded, therefore the young men
were satisfied with their situation in the open air.
Conversation was not wanting, as will easily be
believed, and it turned frequently upon the savoury
dishes brought to them at long intervals, for the
waiters were extraordinarily busy. |

‘Well, my friend Angerin,’ said Francisco, for
owing to Joseph’s interest he had been admitted to
the party, “what do you think of this ragout. It
is better than your everyday dinner I guess.’

‘Indeed it is, said the Angerin, extending his
o4 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

plate for the fourth time. ‘ Alas! for my poor pasty,
I shall not be able to touch it to-morrow.’

‘What do you call your pasty,’ said his com-
‘panions.

‘ Oh, nothing,’ said the poor fellow, who regretted
the words that had escaped him ; but they insisted
upon his telling them, and as his friend J oseph
joined in their entreaties, he told them, ‘that being
obliged to maintain himself as cheaply as possible,
after trying various methods, that he had procured
‘a great kettle which he filled every week with tur-
nips, potatos, and a piece of bacon, and these he
boiled together, he ate it hot the first and second
day, and the rest of the week-cold. He was so accus-
tomed to call it his pasty, that the word escaped him
when he was not aware.’

‘Poor dear friend,’ said Joseph, extending his
hand to him.

‘Poor Angerin,’ repeated the others, and for a
moment there was a dead silence.

‘ Gentlemen,’ said Francisco, who blushed to ‘hint
of the times he had grumbled at his father’s frugal
fare, ‘Gentlemen, let me propose a toast: To the
success of our good companion ! and may he gain
the prize even if I should lose it.’

The young men all rose and touched their places:
and the Angerin, much affected and agitated, kept
repeating, ‘ ‘Ah, dear Berr, I owe all this kindness
‘to you.‘

While they conversed about art with a zeal
worthy of the subject, they were interrupted by a
great noise which seemed to come from a room on
the first floor, just above where they were seated.
As the window was open they could distinctly hear
what. was passing, and by a very natural curiosity
they listened to what their jovial neighbours were
saying.
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 35

‘Truly, that’s a fine caricature, it must be stuck
up in Barbe’s shop, the youngest chap would know
it at a glance.’

‘Yes,’ said another, ‘ with his shop-boy air. Ah,
gentlemen of the green and yellow school, you think
you will carry off the prize this year, we shall see !’

Our young friends approached nearer, and then
recognized the voices of their antagonists.

‘As for me,’ said one of the rivals, ‘I fear neither
Revol nor Enguehard, nor even their famous Berr,
about whom they make so much fuss. They have
some ease and readiness of touch, and that’s all.
Enguehard is an idle fellow, who will come to
nothing ; Revol is too rich ever to be anything but
an amateur, so down with the Purists ard long live
the Colourists !

‘Long live the Colourists !’ cried the young men,
adding thereto some cutting sarcasms, that excited
Joseph and his companions, who were already heated
with the wine to which they were unaccustomed.
They so far forgot themselves as to seize spoons and
forks and plates, and send a volley of them right
into the room where the enemy sat. This aroused
the other party, who rushed to the window, return-
ing shouts of defiance and bursts of laughter which
only served still further to arouse the anger of
the aggressors. A decanter thrown by Joseph
struck the head of one of the Colourists, and they
in their turn became furious ; they climbed out of
the window, and descended by the trellis into the
garden, and then the attack became furious, chairs
were broken up for weapons, the women and children
who sat near began to scream, and the men advanced
to separate the combatants, without being able to
understand the cause of the quarrel, or what they
meant by Purists and Colourists.

The innkeeper, attracted by the noise, reached the
36 THE YOUNG ARTIST,

scene of the engagement, and with his waiters they
succeeded in calming the combatants, those who only
fought under orders, but the chiefs were not so easily
appeased. Francisco lay extended on the ground,
pinned down by the vigorous arms of a Colourist,
and Joseph, quite beside himself, was kneeling upon
the antagonist who had spoken so contemptuously
concerning him. They were separated with much
difficulty, and poor Joseph in the struggle, having
slipped on some pieces of broken plates, gave his
ancle so severe a strain, that he was compelled to
remain on the ground in great agony. As it was
proved by the testimony of the bystanders that the
young men in the garden had been the aggressors,
and that the other party had only broken the trellis-
work, the host was satisfied with a small sum for
the mischief they had done. :

The party to which Joseph belonged had done
considerable damage, besides having disturbed the

eace of the establishment, therefore the landlord

ad a heavy charge against them, and threatened,
‘if they did not pay that he would give them in
charge of the police.’

Alas ! they had only enough money to pay for
their dinner ; the poor Angerin used entreaties and
tears to move the innkeeper, and Joseph, ashamed
and in despair, preserved a gloomy silence, and
abandoned himself to the most painful reflections ;
and when he heard his name pronounced by a well-
known voice, it made him utter a cry of agony, and
cover his face with his hands. st

The voice was that of the good and vigilant Gabri,
whose active friendship for Joseph had induced
him to follow, and, if necessary, to supply his want
of experience. He had watched the party without
being perceived ; and had taken his seat in a remote
corner of the inn, ‘Sir,’ said he coldly, ‘look over
THE YOUNG ARTIST... 37

your charges, and I will pay all that is justly due
for these thoughtless young men, for I have some
acquaintance among them.’ |

The host, who was not a rogue, and who was only
too glad to have his bill paid, immediately made a
moderate charge, and Joseph, supported by. Francisco
and the Angerin, departed from the inn in a hired
chaise. Gabri had Joseph placed in the easiest
position for his sprained foot, but without saying a
word to him ; and Joseph bore in silence the severe
pain which the jolting occasioned. Arrived at Mrs.
Roberts’, Gabri descended, and said to the alarmed
friend, ‘Take care of the boy. I will see him again
when he is better and wiser.’

He then turned his back without listening to the
exclamations of Mrs. Roberts, who soon perceived
that poor Joseph was quite insensible, owing to
acute pain. He was put to bed, and all the neces-
sary applications made ; but the wine he had taken
caused him a serious illness, and for six weeks he
was unable to put his foot to the ground. One may
judge of the agony and remorse that he felt ; and
many circumstances tended to increase it. Gabri,
touched by his repentance, had consented to see him ;
but he was sad, and Mrs. Roberts uneasy: and
Joseph’s feelings were much hurt when he saw her
take away a bottle of wine, which was near him, and
lock it up. Not long after this he had to endure a
still more severe trial. The time for the competition
had arrived, and Francisco was received as a candi-
date. Joseph who could scarcely walk, and who had
lost time, was compelled to give up for this year, and
allow many to pass before him who were his inferiors.
Francisco, although grieved at his friend’s misfor-
tune, found that the absence of such a formidable
rival made his own chance of success greater ; he,
therefore, redoubled his efforts to maintain the
38 THE YOUNG ARTIST. ‘

honour of the school; but he only obtained the
second prize, which was not the fund for going to
Rome : the first being carried off by the head of the
“‘ Colourists’’—he who had taunted Joseph so pain-
fully. Thus the poor fellow had the double suffering
of two months of pain, the loss of a triumph, and
the reputation of unsteadiness. But he regained
his energy, and felt that fresh efforts to do right
would alone efface the wrong. He, therefore, made
such wonderful progress in a year, that Mr. G
decided that he was quite able to compete with
Francisco and Revol. |

The place then appointed for the young com-
petitors was in the upper storeys of the Museum. It
was divided into small chambers or cells, in which
the young artists were compelled to work alone, not
being permitted to communicate with each other—
still less with their masters or strangers. The sub-
ject for the picture was chosen by the professors of
the Institute, who distributed programmes to the
competitors. Their sketches being made and ap-
proved of, they were to begin their pictures at the
same time, without any alteration.

On. their arrival every morning, they were
searched, to be secure that they possessed no de-
sign or engraving which could assist them.

Thrown thus upon their own resources, they passed
two months in these small rooms, to complete. their
pictures. The figures were to be one-third of the
size of nature, and when finished, they were to be
placed in a hall for public inspection, and the prizes
decreed. Although it was expressly forbidden for
the pupils to see each others, works, that the strong
should not assist the weak, or that a happy idea
might remain solely with its owner; in spite of
all these precautions, the pupils of that period, per-
haps less reasonable than those of the present day,


THE YOUNG ARTIST. 39

contrived means to visit each other without being
perceived. The windows of these rooms looked upon
a kind of gutter and parapet, by which, at some risk,
they could communicate : and though they ran the
chance of breaking their necks, they contrived to
get out and in by the windows. The steadiest of
them shut their windows to prevent these visits, but
two days before the time fixed for going up, they
allowed each other the privilege of a private view ;
and the decision as to the successful candidate was
usually made by themselves, and this judgment was
seldom incorrect. Joseph’s sketch having been pro-
nounced the best, he prepared for the’ more difficult
and important trial. Mr. G—— had urged on his
pupils, by the observation that three years had
elapsed without his pupils having obtained a prize :
this, and the desire that Joseph felt to efface his
disgrace, stimulated his exertions. He was only
sixteen and a-half,— younger than all his com-
petitors ; but he was stimulated by his ardent love
of his profession, and he thought he could overcome
every obstacle. The subject of their pictures was
the death of Hippolytus. Mrs. Roberts was all
anxiety, and quite absorbed in the interest of her
dear boy. Certainly, had she been consulted, Joseph
would have had nothing to fear; but all her in-
dulgence and the affection of Gabri were of no avail ;
it was necessary to wait with patience. ‘ But if I
could only see what they were doing, I could tell in
a minute if Joseph would succeed ; but there they
are, like a set of cloistered monks, and when my boy
comes in at night, he will not speak a word.’

Gabri was quite as anxious, but more discreet ; he
did not try to make Joseph speak, but he watched
him carefully ; and if he saw that he was sad, he
sighed, and if he smiled, he rubbed his hands with
delight. a
40 THE YOUNG ARTIST,

The poor Angerin, who, unable to compete with
them, formed vows for Joseph’s success; for he
thought him much superior to his rivals; but he
looked in vain at the windows, with a longing desire
to see their works. He could only see their heads
popping out with their maul sticks, looking very
much like Punch. Six weeks had passed, and the
pictures proceeded. Joseph saw that his picture
and that of his friend were much superior to those
of other schools ; and his heart beat with delight.
He was gazing at his group of horses when Francisco
tapped at his window, and jumped into his room.
He told him that he feared that he should never
succeed in his figure of Aricia, which, by the pro-
gramme, must be introduced. Generally, a subject
was chosen without female figures, as it was difficult
for the young pupils to obtain models, The students
had reserved this for the last, but the effort seemed
too great for Francisco’s talent. He looked with ad-
miration upon the sketch that Joseph had made ;
and confiding in his friend, invited him to his own
room. Here Joseph was compelled to own that Fran-
cisco had failed. Ina fit of despair, he threw down
his palette, trampled upon it, and dashed his brushes
on the floor. Joseph tried to calm him by the assur-
ance of his having time to repair the evil; and, by

raising the rest of his picture, he excited him to
resh efforts. During the succeeding week, Francisco
repainted the unhappy figure, but still unsuccess-
fully: he began again, effaced and retouched, and
finished it at last ; but in a manner very inferior to
the other parts of the picture; and so that the
general effect was injured. This was the opinion of
all his companions. There were still four days re-
maining ; and when the customary visits were paid,
they all concurred in declaring that Joseph’s would
‘gain the prize, if he completed the figure of Aricia
THE YOUNG ARTIS‘, 4l

as well as he had begun it. Next to his picture came
that of Francisco, and then that of Revol; all the
rest were too inferior to bear any comparison.
Francisco lost all hope, in consequence of the
opinion of his companions, as well as of his own
judgment. He shut himself up, and would not even
admit Joseph; afid he became so irritable that,
to avoid seeing his friend, he put a piece of canvas
across the window. Joseph waited patiently for a
time, but finding his perseverance useless, he left hima
to himself, feeling deeply the sorrow of his friend.
He passed a sleepless night, and early in the morn-
ing, he went to his cell, and then to that of Francisco,
but he was not there; the picture was on the easel,
and he longed to retouch the figure. But this woulcl
be a deceit, of which a second thought rendered him
incapable ; besides, too, Francisco would never have:
consented to triumph by such dishonest means.
Joseph replaced the brushes which he had seized,
and returned to his own room. While he was paint-
ing, he thought of every means by which he could
serve his friend, and though he took s0 little pais
with the fatal figure, it seemed to grow under his
brush, and come out in a manner worthy of the best
artist. His first feeling was that of joy, and he felt
that the prize was his own; but suddenly one of
those noble thoughts which elevated minds alone can
feel, came and took possession of his whole soul. It
pointed out a means of serving his friend. According
to one of the rules of the institution, any artist who
offers a picture in which any part is incomplete or
effaced, is excluded from all chance of the prize, and
it is reckoned as nothing, even if the greater portion
of it is a master-piece. This regulation, which was
seldom put in force, was unknown to most of the
competitors. Joseph had learned it whilst he was
in Barbe’s shop, and he was sure that Francisco was *
42 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

ignorant of it. His friend’s picture was evidently
the next best to his own; and if he could take
courage to destroy the figure of Aricia, which alone
aoe secure the prize, Francisco would have no
rival. |

Poor Joseph seized upon this idea with the ear-
nestness of generous affection, but when he looked at
his picture, he felt that the sacrifice was above his
strength. Walking about in great agitation, he
thought of the honour of being crowned at sixteen,
and of the pleasure of going to Italy, and the benefit
that would accrue to him. ‘ But,’ said he, turning
his back upon his picture, ‘ Francisco wants it as
much as myself; his parents are straitened by the
efforts they have made for his education, his mother
is recommended a warm climate ; and if Francisco
should gain the prize, his family will accompany. him
to Italy.” . . Joseph approached the easel.

_* Francisco is nearly twenty, he has already had
the second prize, and cannot have it again ; his age
will soon exclude him, and I can try many times—
besides, he has spoken to me of his future hopes ;
-and I alone exclude him from all these advantages.’

Joseph trembled ; he seized his palette-knife, and
touched the beautiful head of Aricia—he stopped.
‘If I only efface it a very little !’ thought he: ‘ but
alas ! even then it will be better than my friend’s !’
He threw a glance of approbation upon the canvas.
-At that moment, his memory recurred to the time
when Francisco had so generously exerted himself to
justify his friend from the imputation of dishonesty,
and Mr. Enguehard’s kindness to the poor little
Savoyard! ‘The glorious career he had been able to
enter upon rushed to his mind, too—what he was,
and what he might become! He hestitated no
longer: he took up his knife, and spoilt the whole
‘figure, except the outline ; and thus, by a generous
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 43

self-sacrifice, magnanimously paid the debt of grati-
tude he owed to Francisco.

Satisfied with himself, and more calm after this
proof of strength,—a positive virtue in a youth of six-
teen, Joseph completed the other parts of his picture,
and he arranged it so naturally, that it looked as
if in a moment of angry disappointment he had
rubbed out his previous work, and left it unfinished
for want of time. He kept his secret until the eve
of the Exhibition, and then he told Mr. Enguehard
that he had destroyed the figure of Aricia and had
not completed it. Francisco, whose pique had sub-
sided, and ignorant of the rule, told Joseph that he
was still sure the prize would be adjudged to him,
and Joseph did not undeceive him. This good youth
had many trials to undergo. He foresaw the distress
of his foster-mother, and Gabri’s disappointment, and
that a whole year must elapse before he could retrieve
himself ; but the worst was over, and he dwelt upon
the triuraph and the joy of Francisco asa relief to his
mind, and this was a great consolation to him. The
Exhibition took place, and for three days a crowd of
artists attended and expressed their criticisms very
freely, although many of the young students were
present. Joseph’s and Francisco’s pictures attracted
every one’s attention and commendation, but, ‘ Oh,
what a pity ! the principal figure unfinished! what
folly !’ was an exclamation often heard. On the
fourth day the judges appeared, and after a secret
conference, the trembling candidates heard that to
Francisco Enguehard was: awarded the first prize.
Francisco, surprised and almost stunned by his
unexpected good fortune, did not hear the con-
gratulations of his companions, but allowed himself
to be dragged by Joseph, who led him home to his
father. | a @

‘He has gained the prize!’ cried Joseph when he
44 THE YOUNG ARTIST.

reached the foot of the stairs. ‘Francisco has got
the prize!’—and when he witnessed the delight of
the happy father and mother, who wept and smiled,
and blessed their son; the good youth enjoyed a
higher and purer pleasure than even his own success
could have obtained for him.

Leaving Francisco with his happy parents, who
were never tired of gazing upon him, Joseph re-
turned home, and at a distance he beheld his mother
and Gabri watching for him.

‘He walks fast!’ said Mrs. Roberts; ‘that’s a
good sign !’

‘He seems quite satisfied !’ continued Gabri.

‘Goodness: if he really should at sixteen,’ and
already the good man smiled.

“Congratulate me, dear friends,’ said J oseph, as he
approached them, ‘In my misfortune I am con-
soled, for Francisco has obtained the prize !’

‘ Francisco!” said Mrs. Roberts, stopping short as
aoe was “ae to embrace Joseph. ‘And you,—no

rize ‘at all then there’s some trickery, Ill be
bound.

‘No: e said J oseph, smiling ; ‘but never mind good
mother, next year you shall see your son crowned
with success.’

‘But,’ said Gabri, ‘ who has the second prize.’ |

“Leon Revol,’ said J oseph, ‘and if I had not
scratched out part of a figure I should have had it
perhaps ! 1?

‘ Yes,’ said Gabri, ‘I was sure of it,—I thought 80
when I saw the picture at the Exhibition.’

‘Well done my Jad!’ and he pressed his hand
with affection ; ‘ well done,—you console me for my
lost children.’ :

Gabri was too well acquainted with all that eon-

_cerned artists, to doubt what Joseph had sacrificed
for his friend ; but Mrs. Roberts, who only saw that
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 45

her son’s picture had been rejected, gave free course
to her ill-humour.

‘Well, indeed,and you seem to be satisfied with his
conduct : very fine, indeed ; and after being shut up
two months like that, to let others get before him !
The picture was very ‘fine, however, but justice must
be done, and your woman’s face was too pale ; I told
you not to spare the colour, but boys will be con-
ceited.’

Joseph smiled, and tried to calm the poor woman,
but she grumbled for a long time. Gabri’s air of
satisfaction quite annoyed her, because she could not
understand the cause of it. She never knew any-
thing about it, for Gabri was prudent, and would not
divulge Joseph’s secret ; he never even alluded to it,
but he showed him more affection, and frequently
called him ‘ My dear boy !’

On the day when the members of the Institute
held their sitting, Joseph appeared more pleased
than Francisco. He could not sit still ; he arranged
Francisco’s dress, and by the interest he showed, the
spectators might have fancied he was the father of
the successful candidate, if his young face had not
belied the suspicion. A month from this time the
two friends separated. Francisco and his parents
were on their road to Italy, and Joseph returned to
his studies—he followed the travellersin imagination,
fully rewarded by having procured the happiness of
three such dear friends.

The year passed away, and just about the time
of the competition, Joseph wrote to Francisco to
expect him in three months from that day. He
was so confident, that in spite of seven competitors,
older than himself, he knew that he should gain
the prize. His picture was pronounced the best.
It was also so very superior to the ordinary works
by young students, that the Exhibition was kept
46 _ THE YOUNG ARTIST.

open three days longer to gratify the crowd of
admirers who came to see it! His foster-mother
was charmed, and fully enjoyed her dear Joseph’s
success and the pleasure of telling his whole history to
her neighbours. Gabri rubbed his hands with satis-
faction, always acknowledging with a bow, when the
talent of the young artist was spoken of, and honest
Mr. Barbe boasted of having furnished for this very
picture the best bit of canvas that his shop con-
tained. | |

Joseph, overwhelmed with glory and honour, set
out for Rome, to enjoy, with Francisco, the four
years unexpired of the five allotted by government.
Mr. and Mrs. Enguehard received him as a second
son; he lived with them, and enjoyed in all its
fulness that life of pleasure to an artist which this
delightful country affords.

Many years have passed since the above events
took place. Mr. and Mrs. Barbe having become old
and rich, resigned their business to the excellent
Gabri. A fresh generation of artists still frequent
the shop, and proceed as before. Francisco Engue-
hard is married to the daughter of an antiquary, who
was proud to bestow his rich daughter upon a man
of talent. Mrs. Roberts has given up her business
to her eldest son, and has retired to rest for the
remainder of her life, though she is never weary of
relating how ‘Mr Berr, the great artist, was once a
poor orphan, who slept behind her counter, dc.’
Philip has married and settled, and, though a bad
tailor, is a very good and happy man.

The poor Angerin, in spite of all his industry and
perseverance, still remains a very indifferent painter,
though he had returned to Angers to superintend the
school of design there. The once ‘ Little Joey’ is
now one of the most distinguished artists that Paris
poasts of. He possesses a very good fortune solely
THE YOUNG ARTIST. 47

acquired by industry and talent, and what concerns
him still more, he has obtained the esteem of all
around him. True to his early friend, he never
divulged the sacrifice he had made. He has sus-
pended his laurel crown by the side of his first
palette and his old knife, to remind him of his
former state. He devotes himself to Gabri’s comfort
as if that good old man were his own father. He is
never tired of listening to his foster-mother’s stories,
and although young, handsome and fashionable, he
persists in wearing clothes made by his foster-
brother Philip—a feature in his character well
worthy of being remarked.

Ui!

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LONDON:
RICHARD BARRETT, PRINTER, MARK LANE.




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THE PROPHET |

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THE LOST CITY.

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“They have found Nimrod himself!’’ Page 28.

London :
GROOMBRIDGE AND SONS,

PATERNOSTER ROW.
THE PROPHET,

AND THE LOST CITY. '

PART I.

THE PROPHET.

Davip, the pious king of Israel, was dead; and
Solomon, his son, so renowned for his wisdom and
his wealth, had also passed away. Other kings, less
good and powerful, had succeeded, and much trouble
had fallen on the Jewish nation. Revolt and strife
had come among them, and caused a separation of the
twelve tribes into two kingdoms ; and, when weak-
ened by their divisions, other nations more power-
ful than they had come from afar to invade them,
sometimes making them pay tribute, and at other
times carrying away captive part of the people.
All this led to many of the subjects of their idola-
trous €onquerors settling in the land, who set up
idols, and inclined many of the Israelites to bow dow
to them and worship them. But God was not willing
that the knowledge of his name should be lost from
among his chosen people; and, while he punished
them for their disobedience and wickedness, he also
sent among them from time to time prophets, or holy
men, who, by their warnings and teachings, kept up
the knowledge and worship of the one true God,
the great Creator of the world, and the Father of
mankind.

Now, one of the earliest of these prophets was
6 THE PROPHET

Jonah, whose singular history forms one of the Books
of the Old Testament.

We read there of his being commanded by God to
go to a far distant city, to prophecy to the people the
punishment of their idolatry and wickedness—to the
city of Nineveh, the capital of the great kingdom of
Assyria, the very country whose kings had so fre-
quently invaded the land of Israel, so that its power
and greatness were well known. We read of how
Jonah disobeyed that command, unwilling, perhaps,
to undertake a long and perilous journey across the
desert, and to venture among a people who were at
enmity with his own country, and who would not
be likely to pay the heed and respect to his words
that he had been accustomed to in the land of
Israel. For what purpose it was that Jonah deter-
mined to go in a contrary direction, we know not ;
but it is told, that instead of journeying by land to
the east, he took shipping at the port of Joppa, and
set sail upon the Mediterranean sea ina vessel going
to Tarshish. But disobedience to the commands of
God was to be punished, even in one of his prophets.
We read of how a storm arose, and how the lives of
all were in jeopardy, so that the sailors threw their
merchandize into the sea to lighten the vessel, and
cried each to his god for mercy. Jonah meantime
slept in the lower part of the ship, unmindful of the
storm ; and the master of the vessel went to him and
reproved him for thus sleeping in the time of danger,
and desired him to call upon his God if he thought
he would save him. Now it was a common notion
among the sailors of ancient times, that an extraor-
dinary storm must be attributed to the indignation
of one of their gods against some guilty person on
board their ship ; and casting lots on this oceasion
to find for whose cause this evil had come upon them,
the lot fell upon Jonah.

“Then said they unto him, Tell us, we pray thee,
AND THE LOST OITY. 7

for whose cause this evil is upon us? What is thine
occupation ? What is thy country ? Of what people
art thou?”

And Jonah replied, “Iam a Hebrew, and I fear
the Lord—the God of heaven, which hath made both
sea and the dry land.” ‘And he told them also how
that he fied from the commands of the Lord, so that
they said unto him, “ What shall we do unto thee
that the sea may be calm unto us ?” for the sea grew
more and more tempestuous. Conscious of his dis-
obedience and want of faith, it was then that Jonah
desired them to cast him into the sea, “for,”’ said he,
“so shall the sea be calm unto you, for I know that
for my sake this great tempest is upon you.”

It would seem, however, that yet another attempt
was made by the sailors to reach the land, but that
the violence of the tempest threw them back, so that
at last, while the prophet was praying that they
might not be punished on his account, they took
him up and cast him into the sea,—and from that
moment the sea ceased from her raging.

The prayers and repentance of Jonah were, how-
ever, heard by the Lord, who, preparing a great fish
to swallow the prophet, he was by this means saved
from death, and cast upon the dry land.



“ Again the word of the Lord came unto Jonah a
second fime, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great
city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid
thee. And Jonah arose and went unto Nineveh,
according to the word of the Lord.”

We have said that Nineveh was the capital of
Assyria, a vast empire or kingdom stretching far
away to the east, and lying north of the great em-
pire of Chaldea, of which the great capital was
Babylon. No countries of the world, in the pre-
sent day are perhaps equal in greatness and power
to these two great empires of antiquity, when we
8 THE PROPHET

compare them with the state of the rest of the world
at that time. The historians of Greece and Rome
wrote of the magnificence of their cities, and told
what was known in their days of the past power
and splendour of their kings. They described the
great city of Nineveh as being so large that it would
take three days to travel round it, since its walls
enclosed a space sixty miles in circumference ; and
in the Bible it is also thus described, as “ an exceed-
ing great city of three days’ journey.”’ Within the
walls was space for the grazing of flocks and herds,
together with orchards and gardens; and nothing
could exceed the beauty and splendour of the palaces
of the kings and the temples of their idols, whilst the
prophet Nahum, in the Bible, says that there was no
end of the stores of gold and silver and “ pleasant
furniture.” ; |

The city of Nineveh was built on the banks of the
Tigris, a great river, which, rising in the north-
west of Asia, flows down to the Persian Gulf, and
between it and the land of Israel lay another yet
wider river, the Euphrates, on which stood Babylon.

What_wonder that faith and courage should be
needed to Jonah for setting forth in quest of this
great and distant city, against whose wickedness,
whose rioting, and feasting and superstitious wor-
ship of idols, his single voice was to be raised! But
strengthened in heart by his late miraculous preser-
vation, and made submissive by the rebuke which
ra ee had received, the prophet “went

orth.”

It is not easy in these days of rapid travelling,
to picture to ourselves all the trials and privations
which a long journey by land must have occasioned
at that time. The route from the land of Israel to
Nineveh would pass across a vast extent of desert
country, upon which only at long intervals tracts
of more fertile land were to be found, while the few
AND THE LOST CITY. 9

towns and villages which lay in the way were perhaps
hundreds of miles apart. Beneath a scorching sun
the traveller, even in these days, must cross the
desert either on the back of a camel or mule, or
walk omfoot. Wild tribes of Arabs, ready to plunder
the unprotected traveller, are constantly to be met
with, so that it 1s only in large parties that people
can venture to start on a journey; and so it was
probably in the time of Jonah.

We are not told in the Bible of the manner in
which the prophet journeyed, but it ismost likely that
he too joined some other party of travellers who were
setting out at that time for the east. It may be that
some merchants from the neighbouring city of Tyre,
on the coast of Syria, were going to Nineveh, to carry
there for the garments of the king some of the rich
pyrple stuffs for which their city was famous, or to
take for his diadems, pearls fished up from the depths
of the Mediterranean sea ; or, it may be, that some of
the wood of the far-famed cedars of Lebanon was to
be transported across the desert on the backs of
camels and dromedaries for the fittings-up or roofs of
the royal palaces ; while in exchange, the merchants
would perhaps bring back with them the gold and
silver and precious stones of the still more distant
east. In such a company of travellers, called in the
present day a caravan, it is likely that the prophet
found protection for his long and perilous journey ;
but how different must have been the thoughts and
feelyags of his mind from those of his companions !
How different the object of his journey! After pass-
ing safely through the dangers of the desert, climbing
high mountains, and crossing the two great rivers
which lay in their way, what must have been the
feelings of Jonah as they drew near the great city to
which he was to bear'the fearful announcement that
its destruction was near at hand! It istold by ancient
historians that the walls of Nineveh were no less than
LV THE PROPHET

a hundred feet high,—that chariots, three abreast,
could be driven upon them, and that they were fur-
nished with not fewer than fifteen hundred towers for
the defence ofthe city. And to this strongly fortified
place, within which no doubt was also a strong army
for its protection, was the aged prophet to foretel
certain and speedy destruction. Passing into the
midst of the vast city, “a day’sjourney,”—by which
is meant about twenty miles,—and selecting probably
some open space, or some public place in which were
assembled many of the inhabitants, Jonah proclaimed
aloud, ‘‘ Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be over-
thrown.”

Even in the midst of their pride and strength, their
feasting and riotous living, it would seem that the
announcement of the Hebrew prophet had a startling
and alarming effect. We are told that the people
“believed God,’ and that, struck with repentance,
they fasted, and put on sackcloth, “from the greatest
to the least of them.”’ That even the king arose from
his throne, and put off his robes, and covering him-
self with sackcloth, sat in ashes—for this was in
those days the outward sign of deep repentance and
humiliation. And the king caused also to be pro-
claimed and published, through Nineveh, a decree,
saying, “ Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock,
taste any thing: let them not feed, nor taste water :
but let every man and beast be covered with sack-
cloth, and cry mightily unto God : yea, let them turn |
every one from his evil way, and from the violence
that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn
and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that
we perish not ?”

And it was so, as the king had hoped; for when
“God saw their works, that they turned from their
evil way,”’ he forgave them, “and did not the evil that
he had said he would do unto them.”

And how was it with the prophet who had foretold
AND THE LOST CITY. dil

the destruction of the city, on finding that that doom
was for th» time averted—when, after the lapse of
forty days, the city still remained unharmed within
its walls? It is told, alas! that he repined at the
mercy which God had shown to the idolatrous city,
and that, finding his own words were not brought to
pass, he was “displeased exceedingly, and he was
very angry.” In his anger, he cried unto God, and
said, “that when he fled unto Tarshish, it was
because he dcubted that God. would fulfil the pro-
phecy that he had commanded him to take ‘to
Nineveh, for,” said he, “I know that thou art a
gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and of
great kindness ;” and Jonah reproached the Lord
that he should have withheld the punishment that
he had threatened to the sinful people of Nineveh.

Fearing, perhaps, the anger and contempt of the
people, now that his words had proved untrue, Jonah
withdrew from the city, and going out on the eastern
side, he made himself a booth or tent, and sat under
the shadow of it till he might see what would
become of the city. And it was here that God had
recourse to a means of softening the heart of the
prophet, and teaching him, through his own feel-
ings, that mercy which he would have refused to the
people of Nineveh.

“The Lord Gvd prepared a gourd, and made it to
come up over Jonah, that it might be a shadow over
his head to deliver him from his grief. And Jonah
was exceedingly glad of the gourd. But God pre-
pared a worm, when the morning rose the next day,
and it smote the gourd that it withered ; and when
the sun arose a vehement east wind also sprang up,
which, together with the sun, beat upon the head of
J onah, so that he fainted, and wished in himself to
die, and said, It is better +o die than live.

“And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be
angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be
angry even unto death. A
“12 “HE: PROPHET -

_ “Then said the Lord, Thou hast had pity on the
gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither
madest it grow; which came up in a night and
perished in a night ; and should I not spare Nineveh,
that great.city, wherein are more than six-score
thousand persons that cannot discern between their
right hand and their left, and also much cattle ?””—
The city, which was so full of people, as to contain
six-score thousand children, so young as not to know
their right hand from their left—should this popu-
lous city not be the object of compassion to Him who
is ever full of mercy and loving-kindness towardg
the creatures whom he has made

And with this rebuke the history of Jonah ends
and nothing more’is there recorded of the prophet.
By the inhabitants of the east his tomb is to this day
shown on the banks of the Tigris; but as another
tomb is also pointed out in the Holy Land, as that of
the prophet Jonah, it is uncertain whether he died
at Nineveh or returned again to his own country.

Jonah is supposed to have lived about 800 years
beforetthe birth of our Saviour, and about eighty
years before the time of the prophet Isaiah. 3
AND THE LOST CITY. 13

PART II.
THE BURIED CITY.

Wx have seen how the destruction of Nineveh, as
foretold by Jonah, was for a time withheld ; but it
would seem that the repentance of the people was
but of short duration, and that they returned again
¢oidolatry and sin, Other prophets rose up among
the Hebrews, who spoke of the doom that yet hung
over the great city, even ata time when its power
was at the greatest, and other kings had succeeded.
the king of Nineveh, who had turned to God at the
preaching of Jonah. Of these, one named Shalma-
nezer, had invaded the land of Israel, and carried
captive, into Assyria, ten of its tribes, leaving in
their place numbers of his own idolatrous subjects.
There was every thing to lead men to suppose the
strength and power of the Assyrians to be without
end or limit. But the word of God, as spoken through
the mouths of his prophets, still told of its coming
downfall and ruin ; and so did it come to pass, for
Nineveh was destroyed. Of the time and manner
of its destruction little is known to any certainty ;
but by one historian the following story is related :—
is said, that a king arose, more remarkable, even
any who had preceded him, for his luxurious
living, his pride and power. Far over the east was
his name known, for the splendour with which he
was surrounded, and for his indulgence in every
species of revelry and dissipation. But he was not
happy. Even in the recesses of his gorgeous palace,
where troops of slaves ministered to his pleasure,
and bent the knee before him, where gold and silver,
and precious stones, decorated his dress and fur-
14 THE PROPHET

niture, and sculptured marble and paintings adorned
the walls of his apartments, and where guards stood
around to protect him, anda powerful army was ever
ready to do his bidding—even there, a secret know-
ledge of the destruction that awaited him, disturbed
the mind of the king. Not merely the predictions
of the Jewish prophets may have reached his ear, for
to these, perhaps, he would give little heed,—but an
old tradition existed, it is said, even in the annals
of his own nation, which foretold the overthrow of
Nineveh. This ancient prophecy was remembered
more especially by the king, when the king of Baby-
lon, assisted by the king of the Medes, brought their
mighty hosts against the city, and encamped about
its walls to lay siege to it. The tradition said, that
the city should not be taken, until the river Tigris
‘“ became an enemy to it.” And remembering this,
it was not so much the army of his enemies that
caused the king to fear, for he knew the strength of
his defences, and the power of his warriors :—but ij
was the dread of some unexpected and unknown evil
connected with the great river, which should have
been the best protection of the city. Years passed
over without his enemies abating in their attempts
to take the city ; it was, however, in the third year
of the siege that the prophecy was fulfilled. The
river Tigris, probably at the spring of the year, after
the melting of the snow upon the distant mountains
where it rises, or in consequence of continual raing,
became swollen, and overflowing its banks, bro
down part of the city walls for the distance of twenty
furlongs. The waters were thus poured into the
city, and left an opening by which the army of the
enemy could enter it. Great was then the despair
of the king! He saw that the ancient prophecy was
about to be accomplished, since the waters of the
Tigris had indeed become the enemy of Nineveh.
Repentance was, however, too late ; and, collecting
® AND THE LOST CITY. 15

together his wealth, his stores of gold and silver,
his costly robes and precious diadems, and the
‘pleasant furniture” of his magnificent palace—
he caused to be formed an immense funeral pile,
upon which he burnt himself, his wives and
slaves, and all that he possessed, rather than fall
into the hands of his merciless enemies, And
thus may it have been, that partly by water, and
partly by fire, and partly by the ruthless fury of its
enemies —the exceeding great city of Nineveh was
destroyed. Such of its inhabitants as escaped
destruction, were probably carried away captive
into distant lands ; and the once great and powerful
empire disappeared as it were from off the face of the
earth. Years and centuries passed away, and of the
great Nineveh little was left but the name; while
of the lives and actions of its kings, there remained
to be told. only half-forgotten and uncertain tales !

But, how remarkably and truly had the words of
prophecy, as recorded in the Bible, been fulfilled in
these events. As the prophet Nahum had described—
“an overrunning flood had made an utter end of the
place—the gates had been set open unto its ene-
mies—-and fire had devoured its barriers. The horse-
men had lifted up the bright sword and glittering
spear, and there had been a multitude of slain. It
had come to pass, that all who looked upon it had
fled from it, and said, Nineveh is waste! Fire and
the sword had eaten it up like the canker-worm,—
its nobles were in the dust, and its people were
scattered upon the mountains—Nineveh was utterly
empty, void and waste !”

And not only in its destruction, but in the changes
which afterward took place, were the words of the
prophets most truly and exactly brought to pass.
Nineveh indeed became, as foretold by the prophet
Zephaniah,—“ A desolation, and dry, like a wilder-
ness.” “ Flocks laid down in the midst of her ;”
Lo THE PROPHET

and “wild “beasts made it their lair.” “The
cormorant and the bittern lodged in the upper
lintels of her buildings—desolation was in her
thresholds, for the cedar-work of her roofs was un-
covered.” And all this had come to “the rejoicing
city, that dwelt carelessly ; that said, in her heart,
I am, and there is none beside me: how is she
become a desolation, and a place for beasts to lie
down in.” |

It is likely, that for a long time, there may have
stood remains enough of the ruined palaces and
temples of Nineveh, and of its broken-down walls
and towers of defence, to shew to the passing tra-
veller where the proud city once stood : and among
them, it may be, some unhappy remnant of its in-
habitants may have sought to discover the spot
where once his dwelling was—but all those traces
passed away. With each returning rainy season,
the overflowing of the river would help to wash
away the raised mounds of earth on which the
buildings stood, and deposit thick layers of mud,
covering up the crumbling ruins. Then. would
come the hot and vehement east winds—such as beat
upon the head of the prophet Jonah—and these
would bring with them clouds of sand from the
desert, which accumulating around such of the walls
of the palaces and temples as were yet standing,
would penetrate into and choke up the apart-
ments. Year after year adding to these accumu-
lations of sand, and earth, and rubbish—the traces
of building would gradually vanish—and shapeless
mounds would, from time to time, appear in their
place. Upon these mounds grass and plants would
spring up—flocks would lie down on them—herds
would graze on them—and, lastly, the rude villages
of a people to whom the name of Nineveh was un-
known, would be built upon what may be called its
grave.


AND THE LOST CITY. . 17



_ And so it came to pass, that the nations which rose
to power and greatness, long after that of Nineveh
had passed away—even those of Greece and Rome,
knew not the spot where the great city stood. And
we, of the present day, who read in our scriptures
of the manner in which the people of Israel were
attacked and oppressed by the cruel and powerful
Assyrians—who read also of the exceeding great city
to which the prophet Jonah was sent—and of whom
Christ spoke, when he warned the people of Jeru-
salem to repent in time—even we, havé come to
inquire— Where stood the once great and far-famed
Nineveh ?
18 is THE PROPHET



PART ITI.
THE LOST CITY FOUND.

Ir was about twelve years ago that an Englishman of
the name of Layard was travelling in Asia Minor and
Syria, in order to see the many curious remains
which are to be found there of the cities of ancient
times. After seeing most of the places which he had
read of as a boy in the histories of Greece and Rome,
those which had been visited by the apostle Paul in
his travels, and above all, the scenes among which
our Saviour dwelt while here on earth ;—after
seeing all these interesting spots, there came into
the mind of the traveller a strong desire to go
farther into Asia, and to cross the great’ desert
which lies to the east of Palestine. He longed to
find some traces of the great kingdoms of Assyria,
Babylonia and Chaldea, of which he had read
in the Old Testament—the countries where dwelt
the first races of mankind, and by the passing away
of whose power and greatness the word of God
had been so strikingly fulfilled. He therefore jour-
neyed on. The countries of this part of Asia were at
that time in a disturbed state, owing to the Sultan
of Turkey and the Pasha of Egypt being at war with
one another, and the wild Arabs were taking advan-
tage of the state of confusion to roam about for pillage
and plunder. Mr. Layard succeeded, however, in
crossing the desert without accident, and arrived
safely at Mosul, a town seated on the banks of the
Tigris, in the country now called Mesopotamia, but
which was formerly part of the kingdom of Assyria.
He rested at Mosul, and then journeyed some miles
still further south, to a little Arab village on the
AND THE LOST CITY. 19

western bank of the river. After spending a night
at this place, he ascended the next morning a little
hillock near the village, and looking across the river,
and beyond a low plain which extended from its
opposite bank, he saw stretching to a considerable
distance a line of lofty but shapeless mounds, among
which he was told the remains of a great city would
be found. These mounds were called by the inhabi-
tants of the country Nimroud, and in the tradi-
tions of the Arabs, it was told that Nimrod was
the founder of the city, which was called after his
name, and that he had been buried there. Now,
Mr. Layard knew that in the book of Genesis it is
told how Nimrod, the “mighty hunter,’’ had been
the founder of Babylon and Nineveh, and other
cities of the east. How likely then that the name of
its founder should have thus been preserved to the
spot on which the great capital of Assyria had stood,
even after its other name had been lost; and when
Mr. Layard heard from the Arabs who were his
guides, that among these great mounds fragments of
bricks, and pottery, and sculptured stone were often
found, he was only the more determined to ascertain
whether his suppositions were not correct. Floating
down the river Tigris on a raft, some time after this,
he passed still nearer to the great mounds of Nimroud,
and examining them still more closely, he saw
much to confirm his belief that he had at length
found traces of the long lost-city of Nineveh. The
river, swollen by rain, had at one part washed away
the soil from its banks, and a solid mass of masonry
was exposed to view ; and at another part he found
the remains of a vast dam, which passing across
the stream, formed a considerable cataract. Huge
istones, fastened together by clamps of iron, were to
be seen projecting above the water, and showed it to
be the work of a powerful and ingenious people ; for
by means of this dam a supply of water had. been
20 — WHE PROPHET

secured to fill’ the numerous canals which branched
off from the river and intersected the country.
Leaving his raft, Mr. Layard landed and walked to
the mounds of earth which had at first attracted his
notice. It was then spring, and the early rains had
clothed the mounds with the richest verdure, and
covered the meadows around with flowers of every
hue, while at every step was to be found among
the grass and flowers small fragments of pottery
and sun-burnt bricks, upon which could be traced
the deeply-cut characters or letters of a strange
and long-forgotten language. All these circum-
stances helped greatly to excite the interest
of the enterprising and persevering traveller, and
to determine him to make still further researches
among these rounds ; but he had many difficulties
to overcome before he could carry out his plans. Not
only had he to journey back to Constantinople to
furnish himself with money, but it was necessary also
to obtain permission from the Turkish government
before he could venture to make excavations in search
of the remains he expected to find beneath the sur-
face of these mounds of earth. On returning to
Mosul, too, at the end of the following autumn, he
had to elude the suspicions of the pasha, or governor
of the province, who was both tyrannical and suspi-
cious, and would have opposed his scheme had he
confided it to him. He was therefore obliged to
procure secretly a few tools for digging, and provide
himself with guns, and spears, and weapons of
defence, and then, under pretence that he was going
to hunt wild boars in a neighbouring village, he
started from Mosul with a friend and servant, anda
hired mason, and floated down the Tigris on a raft
to the mound of Nimroud. It was sunset when they:
reached the great dam which crossed the river, and
they landed and walked to an Arab village which lay
near the mound. As they approached, no lights were
AND THE LOST CITY. wl

to be seen, and no dogs ¢ came out to salute them by
barking. The village proved to be but a heap of
ruined huts, and they were returning disappointed to
their raft, when the glare of a fire was perceived
through the entrance of a miserable hovel. Through
a crevice in the wall they saw an Arab family
crouching round a heap of half-extinguished embers.
The dress of the man—his wide cloak and white
turban—showed him to belong to one of the Arab
tribes which cultivate a little land on the border of
the desert, and are more settled than the wild
Bedouin Arabs. On the entrance of the strangers,
the poor Arab arose, and bade them welcome, promis-
ing them not only shelter for the night, but assist-
ance on the morrow in digging among the neighbour-
ing mounds. Seated upon empty corn sacks, which
their host spread for them on the ground, Mr. Layard
and his companions spent the night in this miserable
dwelling, listening to the strange legends and stories
told by their host about the founding of the great
city by Nimrod, which had once stood there, and of
the holy Abraham, who had broken the idols of their
heathen worshippers. After listening to these tales,
Mr. Layard slept only to dream of the buried city he
hoped to bring to light, and visions of underground
palaces and gigantic idols seemed to float through his
brain, and he fancied himself wandering through
mazes of apartments from which he one find no
outlet, and of which there was no end. #e woke to
find that the sun had arisen, and throug the door
of the hut the first object that he saw was the great
mound of Nimroud standing like a mountain against
the morning sky, still a vast shapeless mass of earth,
untrodden and untouched. |
With the assistance of the Arab who had. given him
shelter, and who was called Awad,~Mr. Layard col-
lected together a party of workmen, and proceeded
without loss of time to the mounds. He found them
29 THE PROPHET

much changed in aspect since he had last visited
them. The verdure and flowers had disappeared,
and all around was nothing but a parched and barren
waste, over which every now and then the whirl-
wind swept, bringing with it clouds of sand and dust.
The scene around was cheerless and desolate, but
more anxiously than the miner, who hopes to find
a fresh vein of gold, did Mr. Layard commence his
search for his hidden treasure. Pacing to and fro upon
the principal mound, he found, as before, numerous
fragments of broken pottery’ and bricks covered
with inscriptions. Eagerly watching his motions,
the Arabs who accompanied him joined soon in the
search, and, on bringing him handfuls of rubbish, he
found among them, to his delight, a piece of sculp-
tured alabaster, and on beholding the joy which this
discovery occasioned, they led him to a part of the
mound where a similar piece of alabaster projected
from beneath the soil. Here it was that Mr. Layard
commenced his diggings in search of the buried city !

The party of Arabs were directed to set to work, and
in the course of the morning two large slabs of alabas-
ter, covered with carved characters or letters, were
dug out of the crumbling earth. It was evident that
they formed part of the walls of an apartment which
had been destroyed by fire, for the alabaster was in
many places calcined, or burnt to lime, so that it fell
to powder on being exposed to the air. Could this
indeed be a part of one of the palaces of Nineveh, in
which the great king had destroyed himself by fire,
when besieged and subdued by his enemies ?

Filled with joy and satisfaction at this result of
his first day’s labour, Mr. Layard now made prepara-
tions for establishing himself in some sort of a dwell-
ing near the interesting mounds in which he hoped
to make still further discoveries. One of the least-
ruined houses of the neighbouring village, was
patched up with mud,and its falling roof restored
AND THE LOST CITY. 23

so as to afford him and his party a nightly shelter
from the cold winds, and the next day new
excavations were made in the grounds. Slabs of
alabaster forming the walls of other apartments were
found among the rubbish, at the bottom of these were
picked out fragments of ivory, carved and gilded
with taste and elegance. The mere sight of gold
was enough to awaken the suspicions of the ignorant
Arabs, and lead them to think that this was, after
all, the real object of Mr. Layard’s researches. Calling
him aside in a mysterious and confidential fashion, his
Arab friend, Awad, produced, wrapped up in a piece
of dirty paper, some tiny fragments of gold leaf
which he had found in the rubbish. ‘0O Bey,’ said
he, ‘ Wallah ! your books are right, and the Franks
know what"is hidden from the true believers. Here
is the gold sure enough, and, please God, we shall
find it allina few days. Onl fon tgay any thing
about it to those Arabs, for they aYe asses, and
cannot hold their tongues, and the matter will
come to the ears of the pasha.’ The finder of
the gold was indeed surprised when Mr. Layard
presented him with the treasure he had collected,
and promised him all that he might hereafter find of
it for himself. He was at a loss to imagine how
carved and sculptured stones should possess more
value in his eyes than scraps of gilding.

The discovery of this gold, however, was very near
becoming of only too much importance to Mr.
Layard, and might have caused his operations at the
great mound to be interfered with by the Cadi
or magistrate of Mosul. Reports of the discovery
of gold soon reached his ears, and Mr. Layard was
summoned to appear before him. From the Cadi,
he was sent to the Pasha, or chief governor, and
when in his presence, he was not a little amused
at being shown the very same scraps of gold in the
dirty paper which Awad had found, and which were
24 THB: PROPHET

shown to him to prove that his secret intentions werd
discovered. It was.only after requesting the governor
to appoint an officer to receive all the gold that
might be found at the mounds, that Mr. Layard
was allowed to return and proceed with his excava-:
tions.

We have seen what was the result. of the first «
day’s work upon the mound, but as the work pro-
ceeded, more and more traces of walls and apart-
ments.were found, so as to leave no doubt in the
mind of Mr. Layard, that he had come upon part of
some ancient city which had been for many centu-
ries buriedfrom view. He resolved to establish him-
self for the winter in a ‘still be village which lay -
near the mounds, where he would be better protected
from the wandering Arabs, and where he would be
able to secure the assistance of a greater number
of workmen. Even here, however, he had for. the
shelter of himself and party, only a collection of
mud-huts, covered in with reeds and boughs of trees,
and then plastered over. The winter rains pene-
trated this imperfect. roof so.as to render it often
necessary’to sleep at night crouched down in a
corner, or under the table which stood in the middle.
A thousand privations and hardships lay before this
enterprising traveller in thus entering upon his
labours, and the difficulties he had to encounter -
with the Arab workmen, who were to assist him ;
were enough to have frightened and discouraged any
one less bold: and persevering, but the interest -he
felt in the discovery he had already made, was suffi-
cient to give him courage for all that he had to .
endure. E- ; :

Having thug made his arrangements for staying .
at Nimroud all through the winter months, the.
diggings at the mound were continued without fug-
ther interruption, and the labour of each day brought
something curiqys and wonderful to light. Kinding,
AND THE LOST CITY. 25

that the remains of buildings were some distance
beneath the surface of the earth, Mr. Layard resolved
to make cuttings or trenches into the mound from
its sloping sides, so as to get by this means quicker
to the level on which they had stood, and after
removing a mass of earth mixed with charcoal,
charred wood, and broken bricks, they came to
slabs of stone upon which were carved most curious
figures, in what is called bas-relief—by which is
meant, that the sculpture projects from the surface
of the stone like the impression of a seal. On
the first of these slabs that they brought to light,
was the representation of a battle scene. Horses
richly caparisoned, drew two chariots, in which stood
warriors clothed in suits of mail, and with helmets ©
on their heads. One of the warriors held in his
hand a bow at full stretch, ready to discharge an
arrow ; another, with reins and whip drove the horses
galloping at full speed, and he third figure held before
the principal one a shield to protecthim. Beneath the
feet of the horses and scattered about were the pros-
trate enemies wounded by the arrows of the conquer-
ing warriors. Here, then, was the representation, per-
haps, of one of the kings of Nineveh, at the moment
of gaining a victory over his enemies, which, to com-
memorate the exploit, had been sculptured upon the
walls of an apartment in his palace! We can well
imagine the delight of Mr. Layard at this discovery.
He relates that even the Arabs were so excited and
pleased, that they worked till dark in the pouring
rain until they had completely exposed to view two
such slabs. Hach day and hour some strange and
interesting discovery was made, as the band of work-
wen, under Mr. Layard’s directions, proceeded with
their diggings, and laid bare one after another
the walls of different apartments, which were thus
brought to the light of day for the first time since
the: terrible overthrow of the great city. The walls
26 THE PROPHET

had themselves been first formed of bricks, and
against them had been placed slabs of sculptured
stone and alabaster, on which it would seem that
all the great actions and exploits of the different
owners of the palace had been portrayed. On some
were scenes in which warriors were in the act of
besieging fortresses, while from the battlements the
besieged people shot arrows and threw down stones
from slings. On others were represented the king
followed by attendants chasing lions and wild boars,
the king being distinguished from the rest of the
figures by a particular sort of high-crowned cap or
helmet, and by having an umbrella or parasol held
over his head by an attendant to protect him from
the sun. In others he was to be seen seated on a
chair of state, receiving his principal officers, or
having brought before him prisoners taken in battle,
with their arms tied behind them ; or the people of
a different nation were to be seen, bringing presents
or tribute to him.

On all the slabs were inscriptions, as if to recount
the names and titles of the kings, whose deeds were
thus recorded upon the walls of their palaces. Hven
the floors of these apartments were covered over
with closely-written characters, and each fragment
of tile or brick was stamped with what seemed to be
the names or title of a king. Most of these bricks
we may observe had been formed of the mud which
was deposited by the river, and had been baked only
in the sun, instead of being burnt in kilns after the
manner of ours.

By the orders of Mr. Layard, the workmen now
made trenches or cuttings in several other parts
of the mound, and traces were found in every direc-
tion of apartments similar to those at first found,
which opened one into the other, evidently belong-
ing to one large and magnificent palace. Among
these were long and lofty rooms and halls, which
AND THE LOST CITY. ad



EF. WHIMFER Sy.
el

seemed as if they had been used for purposes con-
nected with the religion of the Assyrians; and
on the walls of these were representations of priests
in the act of performing religious ceremonies,
and strange figures with the faces of eagles and
with large wings hanging down the sides of their
bodies, which in other respects. were. like those of
human beings. Other traces however, were to be
found of the idolatry of the ancient people of Nineveh,
and of the very idols against the worship of which
28 THE PROPHET

the prophets of God in vain protested. It was one
morning, when on his way to the mound, that Mr.

Layard was met by two of his Arab workmen riding
towards him at full speed, and in a great state, of
excitement, ‘Hasten, O Bey!’ cried they to hii;
‘hasten to the diggings, for they have found N imrod
himself, Wallah! It is wonderful, but it is true.

We have seen him with our own eyes.’ On reaching
the ruins, Mr. Layard descended into the trench
which had just been made, and found a party of
workmen standing near a heap of baskets and cloaks
which had been piled around something which they
had discovered. After first petitioning for a present
of money to celebrate the discovery, they withdrew
the screen which had been hastily constructed, and
disclosed an enormous human head, sculptured in
alabaster, the rest of the figure being still buried
in the earth. The head was finely carved and was
well preserved, and it seemed no wonder that to the
ignorant Arabs this gigantic figure rising thus unex-
pectedly out of the bowels of the earth, should be a
cause of alarm and superstitious dread. One of the
men on first catching a glimpse of the monster, had
thrown down his basket and tools and run away as
fast as his legs could carry him. Presently, an Arab
chief surrounded by many of his tribe appeared on
the edge of the trench, above where the figure had
been found. They had been summoned by the two
Arab horsemen whom Mr. Layard had met. These
men who were Mahomedans, no sooner saw the great
head than they exclaimed, ‘There igs no God but
God, and Mahomet is his prophet.’ And struck
with awe, it was some time before the chief or
sheik could be prevailed upon to descend into the
trench and convince himself that the image he saw
was of stone. ‘This is not the work of men’s
hands,’ exclaimed he, ‘but of those infidel giants,
of whom the prophet has said, that they were taller


AND THE LOST CITY. 29

than the tallest date tree; this is one of the idols
that Noah, peace be with him, cursed before the
flood,’ and the Arabs who stood around agreed with
their chief in this opinion. On digging still farther
around this figure, it was found to be that of an
enormous winged bull, and Mr. Layard perceiving
from its position that it was probably placed at
the entrance of an apartment, caused diggings to be
made in an opposite direction, and at about twelve
feet from the first, a second figure precisely similar
was discovered. These two immense human-faced
winged bulls, were thus found to be placed at the,
entrance to one of the large halls, and had been
doubtless, objects of worship and veneration to the
people of Nineveh. It was nightfall before the
second figure was uncovered, and to celebrate the
discovery of these idols, Mr. Layard returned to the
village where he slept, and ordered some sheep to be
killed, and sending for some musicians who chanced
to be in the neighbourhood, dancing and festivities
were kept up through the night.

This discovery, however, as did everything which:
startled the superstitious ignorance of the Mahom-
medans around him, caused Mr. Layard some trouble..
The frightened Arab who had run away, hastened
to the cadi or magistrate, and reported that Nimrod
had been discovered among the ruins, and: a. pro-
cession was formed to announce it to the Pasha
at Mosul. Whether the bones of Nimrod had been
found, or only his image, and who Nimrod had
really been, they did not know ; but a message was
sent from the Pasha to the effect, that his remains
should be treated with all possible respect, and be by
no means further disturbed, so that the excavations
were to he stopped. ‘Toallay the fears of the people,
Mr. Layard was obliged partly to obey this com-
mand, and dismissing his party of workmen all but
3 WHE PROPHET |

two, he continued with these to work leisurely for.
some months at exposing the wonderful remains.

Before proceeding with our account of Mr.
Layard’s researches, we will relate some particulars
of the Arab people with whom he was obliged to
live on such intimate terms for many months, and
with whose habits and manners he had so many op-
portunities of becoming acquainted. These people,
who are to be found scattered over all the west of
Asia, are supposed to be descendants of Ishmael the
son of Abraham and Hagar, of whom it was pre-
dicted that they should be for ever a wild and
wandering race, “Their hand against every man,
and every man’s hand against them.” This pro-
phecy has been most singularly fulfilled, since the
greater number of the tribes into which they are
divided live principally by plunder and pillage, and
are never known to settle in towns or build them-
selves permanent habitations. Over each of the
tribes rules a sheik, or sort of chief, whom the rest
obey. Although robbers by profession, these men
have among them a rude sort of morality which is
founded on the laws of hospitality. Should by any
chance a traveller take refuge in the tent or hut of
an Arab, and partake of food with him, or should he
himself have entered the stranger’s dwelling, from
that moment he is looked upon as a friend, and
would be left unmolested and even defended from
the attacks of others. It was on this account that
Mr. Layard was anxious on all occasions to make
friends with these people, and though the ac-
quaintanceship was at times. troublesome, it was the
only way in which he could remain among them
with safety, or secure their services. We have seen
AND THE LOST OITY. ol

how the Arab Awad who at first gave him a shelter
in his hut was afterwards of great assistance to him,
in engaging others of his tribe to work at the ex-
cavations in the mound, and he continued faithful
all through. Other tribes, however, heard of Mr.
Layard’s doings, and from curiosity or the hope of
gain came to visit him from afar. To conciliate
these men it was necessary for him to make them
presents; but their friendliness soon became
troublesome and annoying. A report being spré@&
that one of these sheiks had received from him a
present of a silk dress, an embroidered cloak or a pair
of boots, another sheik would presently come with
a large party of attendants, and tying their horses at
the door, would enter his abode to hint or ask openly
for presents of the same kind also. Others brought
offerings of dates and honey, and cheese made of
goats’ milk, and seating themselves in his hut would
talk with him and reccive his presents in return ;
but would only eat out of their own vessels, and
when the time for prayer arrived would remove to
the hut of some Mahommedan near, and there spread
the carpet on which to kneel in prayer. One of these,
the chief of a large tribe of wandering Arabs, was
considered a person of great sanctity, ang#Mr.
Layard did not think it necessary to take any notice
of his hints for some presents, during his visit. To
prevent any misunderstanding however, the sheik
sent his secretary the next day to give still plainer
hints for a few gifts. ‘Not that his reverence,’
said he to Mr. Layard, ‘desires to accept anything
from you, but it would be highly gratifying to him
to prove to his tribe that he has met with a friendly
reception from so distinguished a person as yourself,
and to spread through the mountains reports of your
generosity.’

Mr. Layard said, in answer, ‘ that the difference
between his religion and that of the sheik, would,
32 ‘eHow PROPHET ;
of course, prevent: his accepting any thing from him,.
and that therefore he was at a loss to know how he
could weet his wishes.’ But the. cunning secretary
was not to be so silenced. He suggested, that the
attendants of the sheik were not so particular on
that score as himself, and that: to each of them
Mr. Layard might give a pair of yellow boots, and a
silk dress ; or, if he had any pistols or daggers they
would-be glad of them. ‘ As for me,’ said the secre-
tary, ‘I ama man of letters, and have no need of
arms or boots. You might, therefore, shew your
approbation of my devotedness to your service, by
giving me white linen for a turban, and a pair of
breeches. The Effendi, my master, however, would
not object toa set of razors; besides, he would feel
obliged if. you could lend him a small sum—five
purses for instance. (Wallah Billah Zillah! he would
do the same for you at any time) for which he would
pe you a note of hand.’ The only way in which
x. Layard could rid himself of this. troublesome
visitor, was by making a list of all the things that
would be acceptable to his master, which he eaid he
might be able to procure at Mosul—the little village
in which he lived having no shops or bazaars. And
he suggested, also, that considering the dignity of
his master, it would be most proper ‘that he should
go himself, to return his visit agtnceen ‘and offer
his ‘presents, In this manner, Mr. Layard at last
contrived to get rid of his troublesome guests ; and,
after a stay of four days, the Mollah Effendi Bey,
which was the-title of this sheik, mounted his horse;
re followed: by: his: attendants, rode off into the
desert. mH ep hk i 3 gt
When winter was'over, the Arabs, who had passed
this season in ‘hute of: mud, now pitched their tenta
upon the plain; and such as could not afford. the
black goats’ hair-cloth: of-which: they were mide,
constructed themselves huts-of reeds, and dry-grassi
AND THE LOST CITY. 33

The spring, which in Mesopotamia, corresponds very
nearly to ours, clothed the country all around with
brilliant verdure. The pasture-lands were covered
with a rich and luxuriant herbage, and corn sprang
up quickly wherever it was sown. Flowers again
enamelled the meadows in thick patches, not thinly
scattered, asin more northern countries ; and the
sweetest perfumes were wafted with each passing
gaie. The very dogs, as they came from the chace,
issued from the long grass dyed red, blue or yellow,
according to the flowers they had forced themselves
through. Seated at the door of his tent, after the
labours of the day were over, Mr. Layard took plea-
gure in watching the simple habits of the people
around him. As the sun sank behind the distant
snow-capped mountains, the bleating of the sheep,
and lowing of the cattle, announced their return
from the pastures, to wander among the tents. Arab
girls hurried over the green sward to seek out their
father’s cattle, or crouched down to milk those which
had returned of their own accord to the fold. Some
were seen coming from the river, bearing pitchers of
water on their shoulders, or carried heavy loads of
grass, which they had cut in the meadows. Some-
times parties of horsemen might be seen in the
distance, slowly crossing the plain; the tufts of
ostrich feathers which topped their long spears,
showing darkly against the evening sky. They would
ride up to Mr. Layard’s tent, and give him the usual
salutation, of < Peace be with you, O Bey’—or,
“God help you.’ Then, driving their lances into the
ground they, would spring from their horses, and
fastening their halters to the stakes, would sit
down on the grass, and relate the tales of their
wars and plunderings, until the moon rising, they
sprang again into their saddles, and rode away into
the desert. On occasions, when Mr. Layard partook
of the hospitality of these people, sheep would be
34 THE PROPHET

slaughtered and boiled; while large wooden bowls
of sour milk, and platters of fresh butter, were
placed before him. When the meat was cooked, the
Arabs would put their fingers into the cauldron, and
pulling out pieces of meat, lay them on wooden
platters, the guest being also expected to eat in
his fingers. ‘The Arabs are naturally hospitable
and generous. If one of the workmen was wealthy
enough to buy a handful of raisins, or a piece of
camel’s or sheep’s flesh, or, if he had a cow which
occasionally yielded him butter, or sour milk, he
would immediately call together his friends to par-
take of his feast. Mr. Layard would be frequently
invited to such entertainments, the whole repast
consisting of half-a-dozen dates, or raisins, spread
out wide, to make the best show, upon a corn-sack,
with a pat of butter upon the corner ofa flat loaf, or
a few cakes of dough baked in the ashes; and yet
the meal was ushered in with the greatest solemnity ;
the -host turning his dirty head-kerchief and his
cloak to look smart and clean, and appearing proud
of the honour done him by the visit.

The Arab women are accustomed to perform almost
all the labour required for the wants of their families.
They make the bread, and fetch the water, and cut
the wood, which they have to bring home from afar
on their heads. They have to strike and raise the
tents, when they move from one place to another,
and to unload the beasts of burden. If their hus-
bands possess sheep or cows, they have to drive the
animals to the pastures, and milk them at night ; and,
in travelling, they carry the children on their backs,
and even when going about their household business,
if too young to be left alone ; the men all the while
sitting indolently by, smoking their pipes, and
listening to trifling stories and gossip. Mr. Layard
did much to improve the condition of these poor
women while living amongst them. He punished
AND THE LOST CITY. bo

such of the husbands as beat their wives, and re-
leased them from the labour of fetching water from
the river, by employing for that purpose. horses and
donkeys. Other erwise, the women would bring it in
large goat or sheep- skins, strapped to their backs,
on the top of which was seated the child too young
to follow its mother on foot. The women worked
cheerfully ; and it was seldom the husbands had to
complain of their idleness. In time, however, they
acquired such confidence in Mr. Layard, as to appeal
to his protection, when their husbands behaved
eruelly or unjustly to them: and they were not
without fears as to how they would be treated after
he had left. ‘O Bey,’ said they, on one occasion,
to him, ‘ we are your sacrifice. May God reward
you! Have we not eaten wheaten bread, and even
butter, since we have lived under your shadow? Is
there one of us that has not now a coloured kerchief
for her head, bracelets and ancle-rings, and a striped
cloak ? But what shall we do when you leave us,
which God forbid you ever should do? Our, husbands
will then have their turn, and there will be no one
to help us.’

The daily meal of the Arab workmen at the
mound, which was breakfast and dinner in one, was
generally brought to them at eleven o’clock, by the
younger children. To satisfy their hunger, few had
more than a loaf of millet bread, or millet made into
a kind of paste ; for wheaten bread was a kind of
luxury. Sometimes their wives had found time to
gather a few herbs, which were boiled in water with
a little salt, and sent in wooden bowls; and, in
spring, some milk and curds usually accompanied
the bread. The little children, who carried their
father’s or brother’s portion, came merrily along,
and sat smiling on the edge of the trenches, or stood
gazing in wonder at the sculptures, until they were
sent back with the empty platters and bowls. The
36 ‘THE PROPHET

workmen sat together, as they ate, in the trenches
where they had been digging ; a little water, drunk
out of a large jar, being their only beverage. Yet
they were happy and joyous. The joke went round:
or, during the short time they had to rest, one told
a story, which they continued the next day, if they
had not time to finish it. Sometimes a pedlar from
Mosul, driving before him his donkey, laden’ with
raisins, or dried dates, would appear on the mound,
and buying up his store, and distributing it among
the Arabs, Mr. Layard would cause great delight
and satisfaction. At other times he gave feasts
to the workmen and their families ; inviting the
wives and daughters to separate entertainments,
as they were not permitted to eat with the men
in public. Wandering musicians were engaged to
play to them, and the night would be spent in
dancing, of which the Arabs are immoderately fond.
In every way in his power Mr. Layard seems to have
endeavoured to encourage. good feeling among his
workmen,; and the habits of industry and regular
employment which they acquired with him, may
have produced a lasting good effect on their cha-
racters. At tinles, however, their old fondness for
pillage and robbery would show itself, and break
through their newly-adopted habits. Mr. Layard
was riding home one evening from the ruins, ac-
companied by an English friend, who was paying
him a visit, when they came up with his party of
Arab workmen returning from their day’s labour.
Following a flock of sheep belonging to the people
of the village, these men were shouting and hal-
looing, brandishing their swords, and indulging in
all kinds of strange gestures. Amazed at these
violent proceedings, Mr. Layard inquired the cause,
when the most active of the party exclaimed, ‘0
Bey, God be praised, we have eaten butter and
wheaten bread under your shadow, and are content.
AND THE LOST CITY. O7

But an Arab isan Arab. Itis not for him to carry
dirt about in a basket, and to use a spade all his
life ; he should be with his sword and his mare in
the desert. Weare sad when we think of the days
when we plundered our enemy’s tribe, and we must
have excitement or our hearts will break. Let us
then believe, that we have taken these sheep from
our enemy, and that we are driving them, home to
our tents’—and off they ran, raising their wild war-
cry, aud flourishing their swords in the air, to the no
small alarm of the shepherd, who saw his sheep
scampering about in all directions, and did not seem
to enter into the joke.

Among the Arabs employed at different times by
Mr. Layard, for his works at the mound of Nimroud,
were some who were particularly interesting to him,
as being Christians. They belonged to a people
called Nestorians, who have been long known in the
east as followers of Christ, and the remnant of whom
still inhabit the mountains of Kurdistan, and con-
tinue to practise their pure and simple religion.
They profess to have received their faith from the
apostles themselves, and to have kept it unchanged
and uncorrupted ever since. They have among
them some of the books of the New Testament,
which are written in the Chaldean language ; and
they preserve many of the observances of other
Christians, such as baptism and the celebration of
the Lord’s Supper. Especially are they remarkable
for their observance of the sabbath, and the Arab
Christians employed by Mr. Layard were strict in
abstaining from work or from journeying on that
day. Two of the men would occasionally walk to a
distant village on the Saturday evening, to fetch a
supply of flour for the coming week, and would
return early on the Monday morning in order to
avoid travelling on the sabbath. On these days they
would assemble on the mound or in the trenches,
OS THE PROPHET

while one of their priests or deacons would repeat
prayers, or lead a hymn or chant, the hearers
kneeling reverently with uncovered heads.

How striking and impressive must have been the
sight of these poor Christians, worshipping thus the
great and invisible Father of mankind, in the very
presence of those idols, and amid the remains of
those temples, which, by his will and power, had been
overthrown! Never, as Mr. Layard observes, was
the triumph of truth more plainly shown than in the
worship of these followers of Him, whose doctrines
are now so widely spread over the face of the globe,
while of the religion of the ancient heathens, who once
worshipped on that spot, we have nothing left but
the crumbling remains, which these poor Christians
were helping to bring to light, after being for thou-
sands of years, buried beneath the earth.



With the return of spring, Mr. Layard was enabled
to continue his diggings at the mound of Nimroud
‘on a larger scale than he had before attempted, and
in the course of a few months, the remains of a very
extensive building was laid completely open to the
view, while in another part of the mound another
very considerable palace was also brought to light. He
was now able to wander through a long and intricate
series of apartments, opening one into the other,
around which were sculptured slabs, which by their
representations, told him many a tale, not only of
the lives and actions of the kings, who had inhabited
the palaces, but of the manner of life of their sub-
jects. Itis not to be wondered at that very many
of them portrayed scenes of battle and warfare, of
sieges and the taking of prisoners, reminding us of
the cruel wars undertaken so often by the kings of
Assyria against the people of Israel. In some were
seen scribes taking down the number of the slain
AND THE LOST CITY. oy

the heads of the slaughtered enemies being brought
as trophies of conquest. In others were pinioned
captives, men and women standing before their con-
querors, while the elephants, baboons, and apes,
and other strange animals of a foreign country, were
led as it were in procession, to give evidence of
victory. On some of the slabs were carved rude
pictures of rivers, with trees on their banks, boats
rowed with oars, and men catching fish with rods
and lines. Others, in which men were crossing
streams on goat skins blown out like bladders, so

ce



& to bear them up, which is a method of £ swim
across streams adopted even to this day by the
people of that country. In some of the carvings
were to be seen representations of the interior of
castles and tents, with people cooking and making
bread, in which ‘the utensils were not unlike the
bowls and jars which are used in the present day
even by us; and among the ruins many gracefully
shaped vases were found by Mr. Layard, of baked
clay or metal.

The most remarkable, however, of all the represen-
tations found on the walls of the different apartments,
were those which related to the idolatrous ceremonies
of the Ninevites. It almost seemed as if the royal
owners of these palaces had themselves been held
sacred, and worshipped by their ignorant subjects,
so that their palaces were as much the temples of
‘40 THE PROPHET

their religion as the dwelling-places of their kings.
Around many of the apartments were strange
emblems and mysterious symbols, mixed up with
figures of priests and winged monsters, half birds
_ and half men, while kings in gorgeous apparel, and
covered with richly embroidered-robes, and decorated
with fringes and tassels, and jewelled breast-plates,
received the homage of strangely-clothed priests. At
the entrances of all the larger apartments were pairs
of gigantic human-faced and winged bulls or lions,



similar to the one whose discovery had occasioned so
much alarm among the Arabs, and these enormous
and imposing-looking figures, if not actually objects
of worship, were well calculated to inspire a super-
AND THE LOST GITY. AL

stitious sort of reverence in the ignorant people, who
‘were admitted into these halls and temples.

What must have greatly added to the effect of all
the sculptures, was the brilliant colouring with which
they were covered, and of which Mr. Layard found
many traces. Beautiful borders and patterns, too,
painted on plaster, in deep and brilliant colours—
red, blue, and yellow—had passed around the rooms,
above and below the sculptured slabs, and every
figure had its appropriate colouring ; so that nothing
could have been more gorgeous than these highly
decorated apartments at the time when they were
inhabited by the kings of Nineveh. Many of the
sculptures were but rudely executed, as if by a people
who had made but little progress in art, and not
unlike the drawings attempted by very young
children ; but others were done with considerable
skill, the figures being in good proportion, and the
ornaments, ‘such as the fringes and embroidery, on
the robes of many of the kings, were finely and deli-
cately carved, and designed with great elegance.
=-Amid all the ruins which were explored by Mr.
Dayard, there were no traces to be found of either win-
dows or roofs, so that he came to the conclusion that
the apartments had been covered over with a fraine-
work constructed entirely of wood, having an open-
ing in the centre to admit the light. In the book of
the prophet Zephaniah, it speaks of the cedar-work of
the palaces of Nineveh being uncovered at the time
of its destruction, and it is likely that the roofs were
formed of this wood, and afterwards destroyed by
fire, since many of the apartments were found
choked up with charcoal and charred wood. It
would seem also that no sort of decorations were
placed on the outsides of the palace walls, all the

sculptures being within ; and from the absence of
any trace of doors, it may be concluded that these
were also of wood. It did not surprise Mr. Layard
that he should nowhere come upon the remains of


42 - THE PROPHET

what would have been the habitations of the people
of Nineveh, since he believes it to be most probable
that the inhabitants, all but the kings and the nobles,
dwelt in tents, or houses of sun-burnt brick, simiktr
to those inhabited by the present dwellers of Meso-
potamia. The ancient city of Nineveh, in fact, must
have been like a walled province, rather than a town,
the greater part of its population living only in tents
or temporary habitations, whose destruction, at the
time of its overthrow, was so complete, as to leave
no trace whatever of their existence.

Interesting above all in the remains of Nineveh,
were the carved inscriptions found everywhere upon
the walls and floors of the apartments. In all these
inscriptions the character was the same, which from
the wedge-shaped strokes that form the letter has

INTE Poy ACT
KKB OF

been sometimes called cuneiform, and at others,
arrow-headed, from their resemblance to the end of
an arrow. Nothing could exceed the extreme re-
gularity and neatness with which this writing
carved on the stones at Nineveh, and great indeed,
will be the interest, if the day should come when
it can all be read and translated. Already Mr.
Layard and others who have studied this writing,
have been able to make out which words in these
inscriptions represent the names of some of the
kings of Nineveh, followed: or preceded by their
titles and the same names and titles have been
found repeated again and again’ on bricks and
stones, in the same manner as in England, the royal
AND THE LOST CITY. 43

arms are often printed or stamped upon articles of
manufacture. It would seem too, as if the very walls
and floors of the apartments of the palaces at Nineveh,
had been the books in which the history of the king-
dom had been written, or rather, in which the ex-
ploits of their kings had been recorded, and many
of these inscriptions are so sharply cut, and appa-
rently had been so unworn by the tread of footsteps
or the hand of time before the moment of their,
being closed up from the light of day by the destruc-
tion of the city, that it would seem as if the chron-
icles of the kingdom may have been kept in this
way until near the time of its overthrow. The day
may come, when learned and persevering men shall
have contrived to make out the meaning of all this
curious arrow-headed writing of the ancient Nine-
vites. They may be able to read from it the record
of the coming of the Hebrew prophet, who told that
the great city would be destroyed, and it may be
that the chronicler will have added, that this
prophecy proved untrue! In this way too may'be
recorded the name and doings of the great Assyrian
king, Shalmanesar, who went up against Samaria,
the capital of the ten tribes of Israel, and carried
awaydts inhabitants into captivity ; and it is pos-
sible, that from these stories may one day be read,
the same account which we find in the Bible,
of the fatal punishment that fell upon the’ Assyrian
king Sennacherib, who went in the time of king
Hezekiah, with a large army of horsemen and
warriors in chariots to besiege Jerusalem, and who
after impiously taunting the pious king for his
trust in the God who alone was able to save him
out of the hand of his enemy, was rebuked in so
awful a manner for his pride and wickedness—for
“it came to pass that night that the angel of
the Lord went out, and smote in the camp of the
Assyrians an hundred, four-score and five thousand ;
44 . THE PROPHET.

and when they arose early in the morning, behold
they were all dead corpses. So Sennacherib king of
ia, parted, and went and returned and dwelt

: e pe

An@of this same Sennacherib, it is recorded in the
Bible, that he was,murdered by his own songs when
worshipping in the temple of his.god Nisroch ; while
by many it is supposed that his son Esarhaddon,
who succeeded him, was the last of the powerful and
cruel kings of Nineveh.

A large portion of the mound of Nimroud having
been thus explored by Mr. Layard, and having con-
vinced himself that the. remains he had found, were
a part of the ‘exceeding great city’ of Nineveh, his
next endeavours were to remove such portions of
the sculptured stones and alabaster, as when trans-
ported to our country, should enable us to form a
good idea of this‘ancient city. It was easy enough
to manage the removal of many of the sculptured
slabs which had adorned the walls of the palaces ;
but it was with great difficulty and only after much
preparation, that he succeeded in getting two of the
gigantic winged bulls removed from the mound and
carried down to the river. To effect this, he was
first obliged to have a rough sort of wagon or cart
constructed at Mosul, to which a number of oxen
were yoked, and besides these, a large troop of Arabs
was required to drag it over the plain which lay
between the mound and the river. A great raft then
had to be made, on which the huge idols were to be
floated down to where the Tigris falls into the
Persian Gulf, and afterwards they had to be con-
veyed in a ship to England. The rafts on the
Tigris are floated by means of sheep or goat-skins
sewn up and inflated, and by this means the heavy
cargo of sculptured stones was kept above the suite:
face of the water. The removal. and embarkation:
of these. remains was a cause of great excitement



© AND THE LOST CITY. | 45

among the Arabs, who assisted Mr. Layard, and
sheiks with their tribes came from afar to witness
the ceremony. One of these could not refrain from
expressing his surprise, that Mr. Layard show
so much trouble to carry these stones away to his
own country. ‘Wonderful! Wonderful!’ said. he,
‘In the name of the Most High, tell me, O Bey,
what you are going to do with these stones? So
many thousands of purses spent upon these things !
Can it be as you say, that your people learn
wisdom from them; or is it that they are to go to
the palace of your queen who worships these idols ?
As for wistom, these figures will not teach you to
make better knives and scissors, or chintzes; and it
isin the making of these things that the English
show their,wisdom. But God is great! Here are
stones which have been buried ever since the time of
the holy Noah— peace be with him! Perhaps, they
were underground before the deluge. I have lived
on these lands for years. My father, and the father
of my father, pitched their tents here before me;
but they never heard of these figures. For twelve
hundred years have the true believers (the Mahomme-
dans) been settled in this country, and none of them
ever heard of a palace underground, neither did they
who went beforethem. But lo! here comes a Frank
from many days’ journey off, and he walks up to the
very place, and he takes a stick and makes a line
here, and a line there,’ and as he spoke the Arab
with the point of his spear suited his action to his
words,—‘ Here says he, is the palace ; there says he
is the ‘gate ; and he shows us what has been all our
lives beneath our feet, without our having known
anything about it. Wonderful! Wonderful! Is it
by books, is it by magic, or is it by your prophets,
that you have learnt such things ? Speak, O Bey,
and tell me the secret of wisdom,’

And the wonder of the Arab chief did not surprise


40 i THE PROPHET +

even Mr. Layard, when he reflected on the curious
changes that had taken place in the history of
r ulptures ; the strange scenes they had been
Miko at the time of the greatness of Nineveh,
“fer downfall ; and when especially he thought
of the’ long eventful ages during which they had
lain buried in the earth: while nothing could be
more strange or wonderful than their now being
transported thousands of miles across the sea, to
busy London, in order that, as the Arab said, they
might “teach wisdom” to its people. After des-
patching these remains, Mr. Layard, in order to
preserve: the remaining sculptures, was obliged to
cause the apartments he had laid open to be filled
up again with earth, so that they might be thus
protected from the weather, and to prevent also the
stones from being carried away by the people of
the country, who, feeling no interest in their anti-
quity, might have used them for building purposes.
When he left the mound of Nimroud, it was therefore
again impossible to see any traces of the palaces and
buildings which it contained, and the long labyrinth
of apartments through which he had been accus-
tomed to wander, gazing at its strangely sculptured
walls, and passing between the vast portals formed
by the gigantic bulls, and lions; all this had now
vanished from his sight, and the remembrance of it
seemed to him like a dream. Before returning to
England, however, Mr. Layard made researches and
excavations among some mounds of asimilar nature,
at a place about eighteen miles from Nimroud, where
he also found the remains of apartments decorated
with carvings similar in character to those of Nim-
roud. Here were also kings and warriors, habited in
the samme fashion of those of Nineveh, with i inscrip-
tions of the same character, and idols of the same
form. He concluded, indeed, that it was but another
portion of the vast city spoken of by ancient histo-



* AND THE LOST CITY. 47.

rians,. and described in the Bible as of “ three days’
journey,” the palaces it contained being those only
of a more recent date, and built by other kings,
descendants of the builders of those at Nimroud.
Tombs were also found here, containing skeletons,
which crumbled to dust when exposed to the air, but
showed by thé ornaments lying among the bones
that they had once been persons of distinction.
Here too were found the remains of altars, upon
which sacrifice had been offered to the idols, as well
as many strange utensils and implements used
perhaps in the religious ceremonies of the idolatrous
people, and helping to throw still more light upon
their strange history and still more strange religion.

And many of these curious things, together with
the great senlptured slabs and figures which were
floated down the Tigris, have been safely.brought to
England and placed in our British Museum. Here
we can examine for ourselves these interesting repre-
sentations of the kings and warriors, priests and idols,
of a people who held such terrible sway over the
earth nearly three thousand years ago; and after
seeing all that is thus portrayed of their habits and
history, we cannot fail to turn with increased interest
to those parts of our Bible which allude to them,
and while the sight of these stones may cause us to
rejoice that the idols of the heathen nations should
be thus overthrown, it should also render us more
earnest in sefving that one true God, whom the
nations of the earth have been taught to know ; and
in knowing that He “is a Spirit,” and that “ He
dwelleth not in temples made with hands,”’ so should
we ever seek to worship him “in spirit and in
truth.”



LONDON:
BICHARD BARRETT, PRINTER, MARK LANE.