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Bobby he found the same blunder, and as he had so often laid himself open to suspicion, the teacher charged him with copying from me; for how could he make precisely the same mistakes as I?

In short he could not deny the accusation, but was not candid enough to confess it. At last being pressed with a severity that I thought he richly deserved, he mumbled that the sum had been too difficult for him. Now Bobby had been long at school, and it need not have been a hard sum, had he been a hard worker.

This indirect confession did not, however, save him, as he vainly thought it would; for the master at once told him that that was no reason for deceiving him by presenting his neighbour's work as his own. That was a lie, and none the whiter

from being a dumb one.

Having no respect for the good opinion of his master and schoolfellows, he soon lost respect for himself. First he was the laziest boy, then he was the most deceitful, and by-and-by he became the only unhappy boy of the school.



HAVE you ever considered carefully what is the meaning of "doing" a thing?

Suppose a rock falls from a hill-side, crushes a group of cottages, and kills a number of people. The stone has produced a great effect in the world. If any one asks respecting the broken roofs, "What did it?" you say the stone did it. Yet you don't talk of the deed of the stone. If you inquire farther, and find that a goat had been feeding beside the rock, and had loosened it by gnawing the roots of the grasses beneath, you find the goat to be the active cause of the calamity, and you say the goat did it. Yet you don't call the goat the doer, nor talk of its evil deed. But if you find any one went up the rock in the night, and with deliberate purpose loosened it, that it might fall on the cottages, you say in quite a different sense, "It is his deed; he is the doer of it."

It appears, then, that deliberate purpose and resolve are

needed to constitute a deed or doing in the true sense of the word; and that when, accidentally or mechanically, events take place without such purpose, we have indeed effects or results, and agents or causes, but neither deeds nor doers.

Now, it so happens, as we all well know, that by far the largest part of things happening in practical life are brought about with no deliberate purpose. There are always a number of people who have the nature of stones; they fall on other persons and crush them. Some, again, have the nature of weeds, and twist about other people's feet and entangle them. More have the nature of logs, and lie in the way, so that every one falls over them. And most of all have the nature of thorns, and set themselves by waysides, so that every passer-by must be torn, and all good seed choked. All these people produce immense and sorrowful effect in the world. Yet none of them are doers; it is their nature to crush, impede, and prick, but deed is not in them.

We may, perhaps, expediently recollect as much of our botany as to teach us that there may be sharp and rough persons, like spines, who yet have good in them, and are essentially branches, and can bud. But the true thorny person is no spine, only an excrescence; rootless evermore-leafless evermore. No crown made of such can ever meet glory of angel's hand.



A GOOD Stout bodily machine being provided, we must be actively occupied, or there can be little happiness.

If a good useful occupation be not provided, it is so ungenial to the human mind to do nothing, that men occupy themselves perilously, as with gaming; or frivolously, as with walking up and down a street at a watering place, and looking at the passersby; or malevolently, as by teazing their wives and children. It is impossible to support, for any length of time, a state of perfect idleness; and if you were to shut a man up for any length of time within four walls, without occupation, he would go mad. If idleness do not produce vice or malevolence, it commonly produces melancholy.

A stockbroker or a farmer have no leisure for imaginary wretchedness; their minds are usually hurried away by the necessity of noticing external objects, and they are guaranteed from that curse of idleness, the external disposition to think of themselves.

If we have no necessary occupation, it becomes extremely difficult to make to ourselves occupations as entirely absorbing as those which necessity imposes.

The profession which a man makes for himself is seldom more than a half profession, and often leaves the mind in a state of vacancy and inoccupation. We must lash ourselves up, however, as well as we can, to a notion of its great importance; and as the dispensing power is in our own hands, we must be very jealous of remission and of idleness.

It may seem absurd that a gentleman who does not live by the profits of farming should rise at six o'clock in the morning to look after his farm; or, if botany be his object, that he should voyage to Iceland in pursuit of it. He is the happier, however, for his eagerness; his mind is more fully employed, and he is much more effectually guaranteed from all the miseries of indolence.

Let every man be occupied, and occupied in the highest employment of which his nature is capable, and die with the consciousness that he has done his best!

Sydney Smith.


RENNES, the ancient capital of Brittany, is a famous place for law. People come there from all parts of the country to ask advice. To visit Rennes without getting advice, appears impossible to the country people, who are a timid and cautious race.

A farmer, named Bernard, having come to Rennes on business, and having a few spare hours, thought he would employ them in getting the advice of a good lawyer. He had often heard of Monsieur Potier, who was in such repute that people considered a lawsuit gained when he undertook their cause.

The countryman inquired for his address, and went to his

office. The clients were numerous, and Bernard had to wait some time before seeing the lawyer, who gave him a seat, and asked his business.

"Why, Mr. Lawyer," said the farmer, twirling his hat, “I have heard so much of you that I have come to Rennes to consult you."

"I thank you, my friend ;-you wish to bring an action, I suppose," said the lawyer.

"An action! Oh, no. Never has Pierre Bernard had a word of anger with any one."

"Then it is a settlement, or a division of property?"

"Excuse me, Mr. Lawyer; my family and I have never had a division, save that we all draw from the well as we please."

"Well, is it to see about a purchase or a sale?" said the lawyer.

"Oh, no; I am neither rich enough to purchase, nor poor enough to sell!"

"Will you tell me, then, what you do want of me?” asked the lawyer in surprise.

"Why, I have already told you, Mr. Lawyer," replied Bernard, "I want your advice. I am able to pay you."

M. Potier took a pen and paper, and asked the countryman his


'Pierre Bernard,” replied the latter, quite happy that he was understood.

"What is your age?"

Thirty years, or very near it."

"Your vocation ?

"My vocation? (Oh, that means what I do!) I am a farmer." The lawyer wrote two lines, folded the paper, and handed it to his strange client.

"Is it finished already? well and good. What is the price of that advice?

"Three francs," replied M. Potier.

Bernard paid the money, and took his leave, greatly delighted that he had been so successful as to obtain the lawyer's advice.

When he reached home it was four o'clock. He was very tired, and determined to rest the remainder of the day. In the meantime the hay had been two days cut, and was completely


One of the hired men came to ask if it should be drawn in.

"What! this evening?" cried the farmer's wife. "It would be a pity to commence the work so late, since it can be done tomorrow without injury."

The workman said the weather might change, that the team was already, and the hands idle. But the farmer's wife replied, that the wind was in a good quarter, and that it would be dark before their work could be completed.

Bernard, hearing the argument, was uncertain which way to decide, when he recollected that he had the lawyer's advice in his pocket.

"Wait a minute!" he exclaimed, "I have an advice, and a famous one too, that I paid three francs for; it ought to tell us what to do. Here, wife, see what it says; you can read writing better than I."

The wife took the paper and read these words: "Never put off till to-morrow what you can do to-day.”

His wife offered a few more objections; but he declared that he had not bought a three franc opinion to make no use of it, and that he would follow the lawyer's advice. He himself set the example by taking the lead in the work, and did not return until all the hay was brought in.

The event proved the wisdom of his conduct; for the weather changed during the night; a storm burst over the valley; and the next morning it was found that the river had overflowed, and had carried away all the hay that had been left in his neighbour's fields.

The success of the first trial gave him such faith in the advice of the lawyer, that ever after he adopted it as the rule of his conduct, and became one of the richest farmers in the country.

He never forgot the service done him by M. Potier, to whom he carried a pair of his finest fowls every year, as a token of his gratitude.

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