Oldalképek
PDF
ePub
[graphic]

that one human being cares for you above hearts not to make them. It is one of her all others, that there is one whose happiness especial duties to see that her own enjoyis not complete unless you share it; but it is ment is not built on another's unhappiness ; so great a joy, this world never gives it long. not to be content that she does not mean I see that now. We should become too sat- any harm, but to look carefully, and see isfied with earthly love; it is taken from us whether, meaning or not meaning, she is in its perfection, to lead us to the only One doing it. If any one entering a household who loveth ever. I say this to myself; but leaves that household less happy by her at present it does not comfort me.

means, that woman, I say, has done a great September 4.—Soon after Annie returned wrong, and, unless she makes up her mind yesterday, my friend, Mrs. Elliot came to see to do differently in future, had much better me, dear, warmhearted woman. She has the stay at home. There is plenty of sorrow in usual fault of those generous natures-rather the world, without giddy young girls adding too plain a way of speaking her mind, and to it, my dear." sometimes, when angry, of saying more than “My dear Mrs. Elliot, what is the matshe means. She frightens poor me. Sheter?" I got time at last 'to exclaim. says at once, plainly, and, I believe, without “Oh, don't you know? Has she not told premeditation, what would cost me hours of you ? " consideration to put into fit words, and weeks “I don't boast of my sins, at least," said: of cowardice and battling with myself to say Annie, forcing a smile. them. It may lose her some friends, but it Very right, my dear; but better than is more truthful, and therefore, I suppose, that would be, not to have them. My dear more right. After this preface (it is well no Gertrude, she has refused your brother, my one but myself has to read my long sermons), friend, Tom Somner, and when I ask her I must put down what suggested it. I how it is she has done so, she says simply thought by my friend's trembling lip, and because she does not care for him. She her restless ways, she had something on her thinks him very amiable, and agreeable, and mind.

all that—but marry him! Think of it, my Annie was busy reading, but Mrs. Elliot dear, after the way she has treated him : kept looking at her every moment while we such walking together, such moon-gazing, were talking about the children. I went such sweet private talks, such looking into out of the room to fetch my work, and when one another's eyes! My dear, I saw a great I came back the storm had burst.

deal, and heard more ; so don't defend her." " It is well,” Mrs. Elliot was saying, " for “Mrs. Elliot, what else could I do? He young ladies to be friendly and at ease with was the only person there. I could not sit gentlemen, instead of so foolishly shy, that and mope all day, or refuse to go anywhere they are uninteresting and silly. No one for fear he would like me. How ridiculous ! dislikes such senseless nonsense more than I I liked him, and found him pleasant comdo. But really that is better, at least does pany. It is not my fault if he admired me; less mischief, than the contrary, when women is it, Gertrude ? forget their own proper, retiring, modest be- “No one else there, Miss Malitus ? havior, and devote themselves, regardless of claimed my warm friend, before I could everyone else, to any gentleman who may speak; “no young gentleman, you mean. happen to please them."

Was there not his father and his four sisters ? Annie opened her eyes in astonishment. How many moonlight walks did

you

take I could scarcely, keep from laughing, though with them, my dear ? and how much of their rather frightened, it was so like what I had company did you seek, nice girls as they are ? been thinking

Ah, Miss Malitus, there is the fault. If you "No one ever spoke to me in that way had taken equal pains to please father, sisbefore," Annie said, flushing up.

ters, and brother, had thought of their "No, my dear,” Mrs. Elliot replied ; " but pleasure as much as Tom's and your own, many have thought as I do, depend upon it, he would have made no such foolish and and therefore you may thank me for being sad mistake. I am angry, for his sake, my honest enough to tell you. Woman, my dear, dear; he is too good to have his happiness was sent into this world to heal broken destroyed by a silly girl's thoughtlessness."

[graphic]
[ocr errors]

" ex

[ocr errors]
[graphic]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

room.

And, bidding us a hasty "good-by," my upon--who- nestled so warm against my dear, hot-tempered friend hurried away. bosom all night-who, when the rain fell at

I must say I was glad; for, though what night, I drew closer to me, and thought pitshe said was very true, as I know too well, ifully of those poor mothers who are with, yet it was not pleasant to hear it said so out shelter or warm covering for their dear plainly. Poor Annie! she leaves us to-mor- ones—my soft, warm little darling!-how

could I bear to think of her-so cold, so

cold—the rain coming down-down ;—pitiNovember 2: Our baby, our darling is less cold rain !un loving, damp earth! dead. At last I have courage to write it. 0, how I envied the houseless mother ; for - erhaps I shall feel better now-perhaps the she clasps her baby warm in her arms. And writing that will bring the reality of this I–I wandered from the window : I could life back to me. I must shake off this sel- scarce keep my hands from taking down fish lethargy; I must leave you, my sweet my cloak and bonnet, and going to my darlone, and come back to my many duties, and, ing. yes, to those still so dear left to me.

I know that God will guard her betterI was sitting to-day, with my work in my O, far better !—than I should. I know that lap, looking-looking—but seeing nothing it was right and best that she should leave but the great, great trouble-sitting as I us, or it had not been. I know, I am know I have sat so often lately--when my sure of all this : in time I shall feel it; I youngest boy came softly, and, laying his cannot yet; and He who sees into the moth

head on my knee, sobbed as though his little er's heart, and is so much more merciful than heart were breaking.

any earthly judge, will pardon me. is What is it, my boy?” I said.

“What is the matter, Gertrude ?” Robert But he only struggled with his sobs. I said, roused by my restless moving about the took him in my arms, and kissed him and entreated him to tell me.

At last

Only the windows want fastening—the “Oh, baby-baby!” he cried—"oh, I wish wind is so high,” I answered, in as cheerful & it had been me, and then you would not mind voice as I could. so much."

“ You should have asked me, dear. Mind I looked up at Herbert. He was trying you don't take cold;" and he was fast asleep to appear deep in his drawing, but every again. moment large splashes of tears came down O, when shall I be truthful about my own on the paper. Oh, what a selfish wretch I feelings ! I, who would have given so much have been! nursing my own grief, and never for his sympathy, will not let him know that seeing or remembering that others felt al- I need it. most as much as I-almost, oh, not quite : I took his hand, heavy with sleep, in mine, they could not; and I have been adding to and kneeling down with it pressed to my their grief the misery of doubting if I loved bosom, prayed God to put away from us this them! I have tortured them so, I-oh God, dreadful cold wall of partition that has forgive me! I took my boy to my heart, and grown up in our hearts ; for now my baby prayed his forgiveness, and entreated him has left me who used to comfort me with always to believe I loved him now as much her sweet love, I feel it more and more. as when he was a baby, like our sweet darling; whatever I might seem, to trust me, December. I have been selfish, blind, and oh, to drive away, as a deadly enemy to wicked. I will write it down. I have owned. all happiness, any jealous thoughts. Poor it, I have said it; and a great load is taken child! he sobbed himself to sleep in my from my heart. arms; and I shed tears, refreshing tears, over It is not the sins of others that weigh the him—the first, except in dreams, since baby spirit down: we can forget, we can forgive

them. It is when we see others' sins through November 18.-It rained and blew last our own, that they become crushing. The night. I could not sleep. My tender little other day-how long ago it seems!—my hus. one that I did not let a rough wind blow band came to me, with radiant face, yet tears

[ocr errors]
[graphic]
[ocr errors]
[graphic]
[ocr errors]

left us.

.

standing in his eyes, and clasping me in his getting on what true happiness depends. arms, thanked God that the trial was passed. Full of my own anxieties, yours have often I was frightened. I feared I know not what, seemed small and trivial; and then, dear and fainted in his arms.

wife, I thought you so engrossed by your When I came to myself, he was leaning children, that what I did, or was, would not over me, pale and anxious.

affect you." "It is only good news, my little wife," he “Ah, Robert ! then you were distrustful said. “Be thankful it is so. I have dreaded too." each day to have a very different tale to “Let us, then," he answered, “be more tell."

thoughtful, and more trusting, in future. And then he told me how he had feared a Let us try to understand and feel for each terrible loss—of money. O, what a joyful others' anxieties and frailties; for only so bound my heart gave when he said that can there be any lasting happiness in maronly of money. But I must not even write ried life. I have always seen the importance here how it was: he has trusted me. This of these things in others; and felt too sure loss would have made us poor" beggars,” that we should not fail. We shall be more he said; but he did not mean that: he had humble in future.” even planned what we were to do-go to Much more he said, which I shall never Canada, I think. But a great deal he said, I forget, but not even this just as I have put beard as if in a dream.

it down. For my husband sat silent long "O, why did you not tell me?” I cried. after I had ended my confession, his head in "You so anxious, and to tell me nothing!” his hands, so that I could not see his face.

And then he said that, " At first, I was I'waited and waited, and almost repented so happy.” Think of it—so happy! And, having told him; knelt down before him, soon after, when our baby left us, he did not and, trying to take his hands away, prayed like to add to my grief; and so waited till it his forgiveness. was decided one way or the other.

· Not mine," he said at last. let us ask "Happy!” I said; “I have, not been God to forgive and help us." happy for so long-so long. O, if we had And together, with tearful eyes, we prayed only been trusting and confiding to each him to pity and forgive us. Afterwards, we other!” And then I told him all.

talked, as I have said. I showed Robert all “Do not blame yourself too much," he I had written here, that he might know my said. "I feel as though my love must be whole heart. Henceforth I shall write no little what it ought to be, not to have known diary. your thoughts better, or considered your My little babe! my sweet, pure, angelfeelings more. I was thoughtless, and per- child! I dreamed last night that she lay in haps,” he said smiling, made more so by my arms. With her tiny hand she took the flattery and attention of a pretty girl; mine, and placed it in my husband's. When and lately,” he said, “ I have been lost in I awoke in tears, his hand clasped mine, keeping, as I thought, sorrow from you, for- and I was at peace.

[graphic]
[graphic]

.6

6

[graphic]

LANDSEER'S TITANIA.--This picture—one of at“ the glimpses of the moon" over Fairyland. the attractions of the Royal Academy Exhibi- The engraving, in the combined manner of line tion in the Great Exhibition year of 1851-is at and mezzotint, has been produced by Mr. Couspresent in the hands of Messrs. Jennings, of ins, we understand, as his art-specimen upon Cheapside, where it will remain till the 12th his election as a full member of the Academy. December on view, together with an engraving It is in every respect worthy of his high reputafrom it just executed by Mr. Cousins. Of the tion and skill; excellent as a piece of artistic picture we spoke at the time of its original ap- manipulation, and as true to each varying tone, pearance; and it loses, nothing on a second tint, and particular of the picture, as it is well view as a capital Landseer, and a curious peep in the power of engraving to be.—Spectator.

From The Spectator. the vicious. It is moreover the artist's bust MURRAY'S LIFE OF JOHN BANIM.* ness to select his materials, which Banim

THE late John Banim was undoubtedly a probably did, in the wrong way. man of genius, not merely as a writer of The book in which Mr. Murray records the forceful and vivid powers, but as the origina- life and sufferings of perhaps the most origitor of a new class of prose fiction, grounded nal Irish novelist, is not without faults, the upon a new view of national life and charac- most prominent of which is a tendency to ter. Whatever else may be said of “The Milesian exuberance and amplification. The Tales of the O'Hara Family,” they presented work, however, possesses some of the prime the Irish peasant in a different aspect from qualities of a biography; it presents a succinct the subject of moral and economical didac- account of the career of its subject; it furtics as portrayed by Maria Edgeworth, or the nishes full means of judging of the character reckless roaring Irishman of the stage and and early and later life of the person, if it is comic song, as personated par excellence by itself occasionally mistaken in the judgment Jack Johnstone. Nor was it only in artistic pronounced. delineation that the O'Hara Tales had merit; John Banim was born at Kilkenny, in 1798. they presented the wrongs of Ireland, dressed His father appears to have been a sort of in a good deal of fairy fiction and much ex- general dealer in sporting implements from a aggeration, no doubt, but with truth severe fowling-piece to a fishing-rod, and to have at the bottom; and the brothers Banim may combined his trading pursuits with Irish farmfairly claim the praise of having contributed ing, and some sporting on his own account, somewhat to the emancipation of the “ hered- keeping a pair of well-bred horses." His itary bondsmen.” An original view of a mother, in the same rank of life, was a woman nation's life, and the power of exhibiting that of good sense and strong affections. His life with telling force, is undoubtedly a great school education was of the common kind; thing ; but it will not alone suffice for endur- first at dame schools, (as they would be called ing fame, or even for permanent popularity. in England), and afterwards at “ academies.” John Banim stopped short of the effects his It does not appear that his advances in learngenius might have produced, either by the ing were very great: but his desultory readnative wildness of that genius, or, as we ing was extensive, and from the people among incline to think, by bad and deficient culture. whom he lived or was transiently thrown, His scanty education, the humble condition young Banim stored up a kind of knowledge of his family and associates, gave him a that was eventually of more use to him than familiar acquaintance with his countrymen any he could have got from Irish pedagogues. and a sympathy with their wrongs, but in- His genius for fiction displayed itself at a capacitated him from exhibiting the men or very early age. In his sixth year he is said their sufferings in the most artistic way. to have written a fairy tale, and in his tenth There was the torrent, tempest, nay the very year ance in two thick manuscript whirlwind of passion, but Banim had not the volumes. He also wrote poetry, discovered temperance to give it smoothness. Strength a turn for mechanics, and a taste for the fine too frequently degenerated into spasmodic arts. Indeed it was painting that he first violence; scenes, and sometimes the very proposed to follow as a professional pursuit. structure of the tale itself, were opposed to In 1813 he went to Dublin and became a good moral taste; in the best, or at least the pupil in the drawing-academy of the Royal 'more powerful and successful tales, the effect Dublin Society, where he obtained a prize. was often owing to melodramatic “situations " The information respecting this period of his rather than to genuine passion, and to situa- life is meagre; perhaps, as a hard student tions of a painful kind. Allowance has to be with scanty means, there is not much to tell : made for the nature of his subjects and the he has limned the family in whose house he character of the people; but it will be found, lodged and boarded, in The Nowlans. On after every allowance, that there was in his return to Kilkenny, he was fortunate Banim a morbid turn for the criminal if not enough to get employment as a country por

* The Life of John Banim, the Irish Novelist. trait-painter and teacher of drawing in With Extracts from his Correspondence, General

schools. and Literary. By Patrick Joseph Murray. Published by Lay.

At this period of his life he was engaged

a

[ocr errors]
[graphic]
[graphic]

room.

[ocr errors]

in a love affair, as tragical in its issue as any | tear. His face of agony attracted the attenin his own fictions, gloomy as those frequently tion of those persons who had gathered by were. At one of the schools where he the coffin ; and as he stood beside its head, taught, was a pupil, a young lady of seven- called him the murderer of her sister, and

one of Anne's half-sisters recognized him, teen, the natural daughter of a gentleman in demanded that he should be thrust from the a neighboring county. Between the master and pupil an attachment sprang up, and was “ At first Banim felt indignant at this cruel carried on clandestinely, mainly through the conduct; but suddenly, he thought that if culpable good-nature of a teacher in the Anne had never loved him she might then school. When Banim went to the lady's be living happily; had she never met him father to ask his consent to the match, the she was a wreck of hope, of peace, of life;

she might be joyous and in health—but now old man, described as rude and surly, refused and, scarcely daring to look upon her, he him offensively; removed his daughter from tottered from the room. He had eaten the school ; and placed her with the mother's nothing since the preceding day; he felt no family. Banim's letters and portrait were hunger, but entering an out-house, sank returned, all intercourse was forbidden, and upon the wet straw of a car-shed, and there the letters he wrote were intercepted. Doubt- in a stupor of grief, continued until he heard

the funeral guests assembling. ing her faith, Banim “cursed” her in his

“ He rose, reëntered the house, and being rage; but a short time proved the truth of permitted to stand beside the coffin, saw the her affection ; though it also displayed the face of his Anne for the last time, as the weakness of her constitution, if not incipient coffin-lid hid it for ever. He followed the disease. She was removed from the school body to the churchyard, stood by as the in September, and in the following November earth was piled up, and when all had deshe died. The immediate effect upon Banim parted cast himself upon the fresh green was terrible ; its physical consequences not love. He never could recollect where the

mound that marked the grave of liis first only embittered his' life for many years, but night succeeding the day of woe was passed, brought it to a premature close.

but the following morning his brother met “When he discovered that she was no him about ten miles from home. Leaning more, he merely said to his brother, who was upon the arm extended to him, he trailed his appalled by the pain displayed in his features, limbs along until he reached his father's Anne D— is dead !' and retiring to his house. With his brother's help he ascended bedroom, remained in solitude and silence. to his room ; and though from the time when

“He rose early the following morning: it they had met upon the road no word had was cold November weather; the rain was been spoken by either, yet when entering his falling, and a gloom was in the sky and upon apartment he appeared to recognize it ; the the earth. Banim left his home, wishing feeling of consciousness was but momentary, once more to look upon the victim who had and he sank upon his bed powerless and been so dear in life, but who now, in death, senseless, prostrated in mind and body. was dearer than ever. He was too poor to “During the twelve months succeeding bire a chaise; he borrowed a horse ; but he this day Banim merely existed. The whole could not endure the slow, steady pace of the system seemed shattered. His head ached animal, and when about a mile from Kilkenny so violently, that in his paroxysms of pain sent it back by a country child, and continued his body rocked with an involuntary motion his way on foot.

so violently that as his head rested upon his "He never knew by what route or how he mother's breast it required all the latter's traversed the twenty-five dreary miles which strength to curb the violent swaying of the lay between him and the corpse of his be- sufferer. It seemed,' he said, as if the loved, but night had closed around the drip- brain were surging through the skull from ping weary man as he reached the farm-house rear to front and from front to rcar alterwhere the body of Anne D— lay. None nately.' He lost all anxiety for his profesof her relatives were present as he entered, sion, or for literature; no occupation could and but few friends sat around. He stood interest him; he could rarely be induced to beside the dead one's head, and the long leave the house; and when he did go

abroad black lashes of the closed eyes resting upon he quickly became wearied; he seldom spoke: the pallid cheek, the shrunken features, and and thus his first love laid the seeds of that the worn look of her he had once thought so frightful suffering which during the greater beautiful, from whom he had so recently part of his existence rendered him one of parted in all the glory of her youth, terrified the most miserable of men. The three him, and he gazed upon her, but shed no nights of suffering and exposure to which

DCCXII. LIVING AGE. VOL. XX. 15

;

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« ElőzőTovább »