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* Thank you,” said I. "Why, at Lipscombe's they told me it was not more than a mile from this.”
"Lipscombe's; " said Mrs. Bunny, her eyts extending themselves to a stare of the most awful nature; " what; have you been at Lipscombe's ?” * Yes," said I : " what then po And
you have got out of the house safe ?" As you see," said I. “ You have been lucky,” said the old lady. " I say nothing; it's no use tattling and speaking against one's neighbours; but a nod is as good as a wink to a blind horse; you understand me.
Have you got everything that you took there ?"
“Everything," said I," that I wished to have; I left my portmanteau with Miss Lispcombe.”
“Miss !” repeated my Black Swan, in a tone and with an expression of countenance which struck me to resemble very closely those of Lieutenant O'Mealy, when he pronounced the word “Gentleman;" "you have left your portmantequ there; well—I dare say it is very safe. I say nothing, only-people have lost portmanteaus there before."
“But," said I, "yộu do not mean to say that Jane Lipscombe is capable of committing a tobbery "
* Not I, Sir," said Mrs. Búnny. "God forbid that I should take away anybody's character; only people, you know, will talk,—and they " She is very pretty," said I; " that you must allow?
Håndsotné is, as handsome does,” said mine hostess. She is well enough for that, if all her colour grows where it shows. You understand me, Sir."
Ah !” said Í, “ that is pure malice. All the roses on her cheeks aře Nature's own."
" Ok!” said Mrs. Bunny, looking uncommonly arch, don't rub off? Ah, well! I never tried : however, if you will take my advice, Sir, and you are coming into this neighbourhood, don't you go there any more."
“ I am coming to live in this neighbourhood," said 1, "and I am going there to-mórrow morning to fetch my portmanteau.
" I'll send for it for you, if you like," said Mrs. Bunny: “the Lipscombes and we are great friends."
“Yes,” said I, “nobody can doubt that, -as far as you are concerned. No, I shall gò myself.”
" Are you going to stay at Doctor Crow pick's, Sir ?” asked mine hostess.
“ I believe so," was my answer.
Well, Sir," said Mrs. Bunny, you must pass this door in your way. My husband is not at home now, and I don't like to do anything without asking him,-1 shall have time to talk it over when he comes back, -and, if he is agreeable, I'll tell you something about these Lipscombes which you ought to know.”
“Thank you,” said I.
A sudden noise in the passagê áttracted mine hostess, who left me, and i confess in a state of mind exactly the reverse of agreeable.
it what! they
Yet what was Jane Lipscombe to me? After all, it was but a momentary acquaintance, and that, too, with only a bar-maid. That she was very pretty, I knew,-that she was extremely amiable, I believed : however, the morning would soon arrive, and having heard all mine hostess and her husband had to say, I should form my own judgment, and decide whether or not I would go and fetch my portmanteau. I speedily summoned Mrs. Bunny, and having discharged my little bill, bade her a good afternoon, and promised to come to her early in the morning.
Sir,” said she, “ don't be angry with me for what I am going to say;-I feel very anxious about you :- do you know much of Dr. Crowpick ?” “ Not I," said I. “ I never even saw him.”
Well,” replied she, “ of course it is not my place to speak, but we are none of us any better than we should be. Have you got much money about you?
Why,” said I, in the simplicity of my heart, “ not much ;-a matter of fifteen sovereigns or so.
“Now, my dear gentleman,” said the kind-hearted woman, with tears standing in her eyes,
ye leave it with me; I will take honest care of it, and ye shall have it either as ye want it, a little at a time, or all in a lump, when ye please to ask me for it: don't take it across them fields to old Crowpick's.
“ What,” said I," are there thieves in the neighbourhood ?"
“ I say nothing, Sir,” said Mrs. Bunny : “there are black sheep in most flocks : here nobody can rob you. Take my advice, leave all your money, except a few shillings just for present use.",
The carefulness of the woman gave me an unpleasant feeling; it seemed to unsettle my confidence even in Crowpick himself. However, I was quite sure by her looks and manner that she could not cheat or deceive me, and I counted out fourteen of my sovereigns into her hand : little did I think at the moment what results this single, simple action would produce;—no matter, I will not anticipate. She wrapped them carefully up in a piece of an old newspaper,--the “ Daily Advertiser," I recollect, -and deposited them in her pocket.
“Now,” said she, “ you have acted wisely; call here whenever ye want your money, it shall be always ready. I wish you luck, and health, and happiness."
She spoke these words with an earnestness which struck me forcibly at the time; her real feelings towards me at that period I could not of course appreciate.
I left her and the house, and proceeded on my way to the Doctor's, but, as I marched on, I missed the way she had pointed out, and continued along the high road, (making a difference of not more than half a mile,) until I reached the green gates of Magpie Castle.
The sight of the entrance to what might, in all probability, be my residence for the rest of my life, excited a thousand contending feelings in my bosom; the most predominant of which was the dislike I felt to my introduction, and a kind of apprehensive diffidence of the first halfhour's conversation. I rung the bell, and was admitted. The Doctor was at home.
I never shall forget the appearance of the house ;-an unwieldy, red-brick building, castellated, with a turret at one corner. I crossed the court-yard, entered by a glazed door, and followed my guide through the hall to a square wainscoted parlour, where I remained while the servant went to announce me. Little did I at the moment anticipate the events of which that square wainscoted parlour was destined to be the scene.
A few moments only elapsed before I was ushered into the presence." The Doctor was seated in an arm-chair, and in a sort of black dressing-gown, which to the uninitiated had something the appearance of a scholastic habit; before him stood a large cup half full of tea, a plate which had contained toast and butter, of which one slice still remained uneaten ; on his right hand lay piled up a heap of Latin exercises, one selected from which he was correcting.
Facing him was seated she whom I then imagined, and soon after too certainly knew, to be his daughter; her expressive grey eyes, half veiled by the longest and blackest eye-lashes I ever saw, were raised for a moment as I entered the apartment, but in another instant they were suddenly withdrawn and thrown, not as the best-established novelists have it, “ under the table,” but upon a book which she held in her hand, and “ read or seemed to read.”
“Emma, dear,” said Crowpick, after having bowed to me, and held out his hand with an air of cordiality. Upon hearing which, “Emma, dear,” forthwith rose from her seat, and having asked, in the sweetest voice I ever heard, whether her papa chose any more tea, and having been answered in the negative, quitted the room, not, however, without affording me one glance which seemed to say, “I know whom you are, and why you are come here. We shall be very good friends in time.”
I had heard a great deal of Dr. Crowpick from my late master's successor, and a great deal about his system of education; but I had never heard a syllable about his daughter. The moment I saw her, I resolved not to quarrel about terms with the Doctor, and even to lower my salary one half for the pleasure of living in the same house with her; little did I suspect her real position in that family.
When the young lady had left us, Crowpick began the conversation which I had previously so much dreaded; the anticipation, however, was not justified by the reality, for, in a very few minutes, I found the Doctor a man of the world, liberal in his views and feelings, and quite prepared to receive me with kindness and good nature.
“We will not talk more of business this evening,” said the Doctor. “ You will do Mrs. Crowpick and myself the favour of supping with us. When you are established you will find supper always laid in what is called the tutor's room, and where—it is as well to be explicit at onceMr. Bowman, Mr. Dixon, and Monsier Louvel, the other assistants, will be much pleased to add you to their little party.”
I bowed acquiescence.
“I will show you your bed-room,” said the urbane Doctor. “I hope you will find it convenient; make no ceremony, if anything is wanting to add to its little comforts, only mention it.”
Saying which, the excellent pedagogue lighted a candle and marshalled me the way that I should go.
We ascended a secondary staircase, and passed three or four rooms in which stood many beds. At the fifth door in the passage the Doctor
stopped, and opening it, presented to my view a very neat and agreeable looking apartment,
This is destined for you," said the Doctor, “Where is your luggage ??
"I did not bring any, Sir," said I, “because I was not certain that
Certain," interrupted the Doctor, you might have been quite certain that, after the testimonials I had received, you would not quit me. Can we send for your things ?”
I have left them,” said I, at Lipscombe's."
At Lipscombe's!” said the Doctor, at Lipscombe's !-Umph! Pray did you see anything there of a Lieutenant O'Mealy?”
I was puzzled. What ought I to say? I had no business to know that the swaggering object of my hatred was called by any such name; yet I did know it. I answered in the affirmative.
“How strange !” said Crowpick, “You had better let me send for them early in the morning.'? “ I-meant to have gone,” stammered I.
Go!” said the Doctor; not for the world. You are now settled here; I already consider you one of my family. No, no ;-I'll send qyer for them. What do they consist of ?!!
“Only a portmanteau, Sir," said I.
“How strange!" ejaculated the Doctor. “Well, I have shown you your room ;—now let us go down stairs; I dare say we are expected in the parlour.
The parlour! thought I. What is to be done now?
I implicitly followed my venerable guide. A bell rang loudly. In a moment the scuffling of innumerable feet sounded along the passages. - It was the first time I had heard that bell-would it had been the last.
The Doctor turned half round to me, and said, “ That is for prayers. Past nine-boys' bed-time.”
We returned to the room in which I had first been, and the Doctor extinguished the lamp which had been brought in, after my arrival. Again he desired me to follow him. I did so, and reached the " parlour.”
The Doctor opened the door : I entered. The first person I saw, and to whom I was presented in due form, was Mrs. Crowpick; the second, and whom I scarcely saw while the ceremony of introduction was performing, was Miss Emma; and the third, to whom the Doctor said he supposed he need not introduce me, was-Lieutenant O'Mealy himself.
The Lieutenant looked surprised, not at my appearance, for it turned out he did not recognize me, bụt at the Doctor's observation upon the non-necessity of an introduction.
“ You have met before,” said the Doctor to the Lieutenant. “ Not to my knowledge," said the odious Lieutenant.
" Į thought,” said Crowpick, turning to me rather sharply, k' you said you had seen Mr. O'Mealy at Lipscombe's.”
“ So I did, Sir," said I, a good deal worried at the entanglement of the affair.
" I don't recollect,” said the Lieutenant, in a much softer manner than I had heard him speak in the earlier part of the day.
“ I came there by the Wonder, and- Oh!” said the Lieutenant. Ah, you were in the bar, drinking
hot brandy and water; I remember. I did not at first recollect. I sup: pose
the bar-maid told you my name. I felt myself blush and shudder at the same moment. I said nothing, and affected to smile. I cast my eyes round the room, in hopes of relief, when I beheld the gazelle-eyed Miss Crowpick gazing at me with an expression of archness and pity which I never shall forget. The sequel to this little conversation was more important than might be imagined. Supper was announced : it was half-past nine.
Mrs. Crowpick rose and waddled into the next room—another parlour. Lieut. O'Mealy, with a horrid smile, which exhibited his great white teeth through his black mustachios to the best possible advantage, offered Emma his arm; she smiled too, and accepted it. The Doctor good-naturedly patted my shoulder, and pushed me forward before himself.
The supper consisted of a dish of tripe, fried in batter,—I had never seen such a thing before,-a cold, much-cut leg of roast mutton, ornamented with bits of parsley, and a dish of poached eggs upon a plot of spinach.
The way in which Mr. O'Mealy eyed me as we were sitting down, added to the repast of cold beef at Mr. Bunny's, considerably damped the ardour of my appetite. I resolved that the next day should not elapse without my endeavouring to set myself right with this gallant gentleman, and determined to rally from the embarrassment which his unexpected presence occasioned.
Mrs. Crowpick helped the top dish; Emma took an egg ; the Lieutenant took two. The Doctor inquired what I would eat. I scarcely knew what he swered him, in a tolerably firm voice, -“Tripe."
I regret to say that the MS., as I received it, terminates here.
T. E. H.
MILTON'S PROSE WRITINGS.
Or John Milton, what can be now said which may not be familiarly known by all who possess even a superficial acquaintance with the literature of their country ?' Yet, perhaps, there is no illustrious writer who is so partially read or so little understood. His prose works, surpassing in eloquence all that antiquity has bequeathed to us of Greek and Roman lore, are but just emerging from an oblivion in which they had been buried for nearly two centuries. Their pristine glories, so long obscured, are beginning to shine forth in their original splendour; and whiļe we, in common with all the lovers of genius, hail the auspicious dawn, it may not be unseasonable to mark the causes which produced the long eclipse, and the circumstances which, in the present day, are conspiring to remove it.
That in his own age, and before the publication of his greatest poem, Milton was held in the highest consideration as an author, not only in this country, but throughout the civilised world, we have incidental evidence in his “ Sonnet to Cyriac Skinner," and in his “ Second De