allow awful fondness? That it leads to | eyes, but I shall never get over that hole awful chumming, I have seen with my in your stocking." She had said enough eyes." and heard enough, and she left the room. "Smoke your cigar," she said as she left, "and then come down to me. I presume you can light it without the assistance of your chum."

Captain Sellwood did not answer. He had spoken inconsiderately, and his aunt had taken advantage of his mistake.

"Good gracious, Algernon! You don't mean to tell me that there has been an attachment in this quarter?"

"No attachment," he said, looking down and knitting his brows. "For an attachment, the chain must hold at both ends."

"Merciful powers, Algernon! Can your mother have sent this chum of yours here to be out of your way? You were so infatuated, there was no knowing what lengths you would go, and my dear sister hoped that by putting a distance between you

[ocr errors]

"No, aunt-nothing of the sort." "But I must get to the bottom of this. There is something kept from me. Is it true that you have that you have-harbored an unfortunate passion for this young person this chum, as you call her?

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

"I did love the young lady. We have known each other since we were children at least since she was a little girl and I a big boy. She was so lively, so daring, so witty, I could not help loving her. But that is over now."

"I should hope so indeed. A servant maid

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

When the old lady reached her drawingroom, she was so hot that she sank into her chair and fanned herself for several minutes without getting any cooler. She rang the bell, and bade John Thomas send her Cable at once; and in two minutes Josephine came to her.

"Cable," said Miss Otterbourne, fanning herself vigorously, "I am surprised and offended. I did suppose you knew your place better, and had more delicacy than to sit in a room with a gentleman who had a hole in his stocking."

"Had he? I did not know it, ma'am." "Did not know it? Of course you knew it! I saw by the direction of your eyes, the instant I came in, that you were examining it."

"I did not give it a thought, even if I saw it, and I do not believe I did that. But surely, that."



part to-morrow, you will oblige. I am sorry to say this, but-it is quite impossible for me to have my nephew and you under the same roof together. I have the greatest reliance on his discretion; I You wish I could say the same of yours. shall receive, as is your due, a month's wage, because you leave to suit my convenience. There is an excellent refuge for domestics and governesses out of place at Bath, to which I subscribe, and you can go there till you hear of a situation."

"Thank you, Miss Otterbourne, but I shall not stay in Bath."

"Will you go back to Hanford ?"
Josephine shook her head.
"I am sorry

-I am sincerely sorry. There is so much good about you, so much that I have liked; but, under the It circumstances, I cannot retain you. would not be right; and in this house from myself down, I believe, to the scullery-maid and the boy who cleans the knives-I trust we all try to do that which is right. Mr. Vickary is a burning and a shining light, and Mrs. Grundy de the sun. hay er dis

[blocks in formation]

Merciful Who would occasioned by amazement. powers!you married! have thought it! And so young, and so pretty! It hardly seems possible. But if you are married fully improper that you should know men that have feet under their boots. I do not say it is right; but it is not so very wrong that should have seen a hole in my you nephew's stocking, because married wom. en do know that such things occur."

Josephine smiled; she thought Miss Otterbourne was about to retract her discharge, so she said: "Madam, I cannot stay here. I have explained my reasons to Captain Sellwood, who will tell you after I am gone. Now I have made my resolve, I go direct to my husband."

The door of the drawing-room opened and the butler came in. He advanced deferentially towards Miss Otterbourne, and stood awaiting her permission to speak.

"What is it, Vickary? Do you want anything?".

"It is Cable, madam."

"Well-what of Cable, Vickary?" "Please, madam, Cable's husband have come to fetch her away."


From The Spectator.


H humor is hardly a prominent the Jews, and many are possibly opinion, that they have no f the humorous, there is a ore drollery in the sayings those reared in the synasiders generally suppose. r, as it may, the Jewish have produced in the Gottlieb Saphir, an Auslittle known in this wit and humorist of people. As ready brilliant a converr as Sheridan, he ctive a punster as 1. The right of to rank among d in German ir's pre-emiponderous on." The he was Ghetto


odd things he did, that he is chiefly remembered by his countrymen and his sometime co-religionists.

[ocr errors]

spicuous journalist in Germany, as much | gadfly of true genius that stings to the hated as admired, and had become the highest form of literary expression; and founder of that lighter school of journal- it is for the good things he said and the istic criticism that makes the ephemeral literature of the fatherland tolerable. He came to Berlin in 1825, or thereabouts, and started the Courier, the wit and au- Innumerable are the anecdotes told of dacity of which took the capital by storm. him. A few culled from the collections But the Prussian censors did not appre- of "Saphiriana," published in Germany, ciate a writer who, instead of grumbling are characteristic, and well illustrate the at them, made them the butt of his irrever-readiness of his wit and the peculiar form ent jokes, and actually poked fun at them. of humor for which he was noted. JerrSix weeks' imprisonment for an acrostic man, his colleague on the Humorist, often on Madame Sontag, the singer, and a asked him to dinner; but as Madame Jerrmonth for calling a would-be dramatist man was reputed to be one of the meanest named Cosmar a 66 creature" that writes women in the capital, the humorist generplays, convinced Saphir that his peculiar ally managed to excuse himself. At last, form of humor was not likely to have fair though, he was trapped into an acceptplay where Count Granow wielded the ance. The dinner consisted, as he anticicensor's pencil. So he removed to Mu-pated, of more table-cloth than meat, and nich, where in 1828-29 he published the Saphir, who was a big man with a proporBazaar. He was also converted to Prot- tionate appetite, rose from table as hungry estantism, and was made Hof-Theatre In- as he had sat down. As he was taking tendant. But he soon got into trouble his leave, the hostess came up to him, and again, and this time with a more important playfully tapping him on the shoulder with personage than a press censor. King Lud- her fan, said, "And now, Herr Saphir, wig was addicted to writing bad verse and when will you dine with me again? making bad jokes, and Saphir did not hes-"At once, Madame Jerrman, at once! itate to express very freely his opinion as responded the hungry wit in his deepest to the quality of both. It would not do bass. The old Rothschild, at an evening to punish the critic for this, but his sins gathering, requested Saphir to write somewere laid up against him; and when he thing in his autograph-book, but it was to ventured subsequently to make some re- be something characteristic. In two minmarks about the notorious Lola Montes, utes the financier received the volume he received a peremptory order to quit the back with the following entry: "Oblige Bavarian capital within four-and-twenty me, Dear Baron, with the loan of 10,000 hours. The court chamberlain, commis- gulden; and Forget, forever after, your sioned by the king, waited on him, and obedient servant, M. G. SAPHIR.' The asked if he could manage to get away in man of money saw the point of the joke, so short a time. "Yes," replied the una- and paid generously for the humorist's bashed journalist; "and if my own legs signature. Equally brief was the retort Can't take me quickly enough, I'll borrow he made to some one against whom he ac some of the superfluous feet in his Majes-cidentally knocked when turning the corty's last volume of verse." He never forner of a street in Munich. "Beast," cried got this expulsion from Munich. When, the offended person, without waiting for one day, some one congratulated him on an apology. "Thank you," said the jourhis erect carriage and walk, he remarked nalist, "and mine is Saphir." Cosmar, a he had had a good master of deportment: relative of the bookseller, was an amateur King Ludwig had taught him to step author who thought a good deal more of out." He went to Vienna in 1835, and himself than the public could be perafter becoming a Catholic started the suaded to think. Meeting Saphir in a Humorist, the chief organ of its kind in mixed company, he made the silly remark Germany, with which he was connected that Saphir "was a Jew who wrote for until his death in 1850. Saphir was a money, while he wrote for fame." "Quite voluminous writer, and his "Dumme so," remarked the wit; we each write Briefe" and "Album für Witz und Hu- for what we lack and need." His friend mor are never-failing sources upon Jerrman was always warning him about which his imitators to this day draw. His getting into debt, for he was extremely works are not much read by the general careless in money matters, and explaining public, despite their undoubted brilliancy the advantages to be derived from paying and humor, and the extraordinary "word- cash for everything. Once he wound up play in which they abound. He was his usual caution with the remark that deficient in depth, and lacked the creative" making debts ruins many a man.”

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


no!" responded Saphir; "it's paying | who should have known better, remarked them that does the mischief." When in- that she "felt as though she were stewtroduced for the first time to the prompter | ing." "But still quite raw," observed of the Leipziger Stadt-Theatre, a pompous the wit, in a stage aside. Another young personage too much in evidence at times, person once asked him which was the Saphir remarked, "I heard a good deal greatest miracle in the Bible, and then, of you, Herr A-"- the prompter without waiting for an answer, added, bowed his acknowledgments of the ex- "that Elijah did not burn in the fiery pected compliment, while the wit added, chariot that appeared and took him to "in the course of a performance last heaven." No," said Saphir, "it was evening." Balaam's ass; the ass that made answer Saphir mortally offended the Munich before it was questioned." A great bore, citizens by speaking of them as being seated next to him at dinner, was excus"beer-barrels in the morning, and barrels ing his evident fondness for the bottle. of beer in the evening." One of the most "Good wine," said the personage, "makes charming girls in that capital, a girl who us forget trouble and vexation, and enenjoyed some reputation as an artist, mar-ables us to bear up against the thousands ried a young man of the "long and lanky" of disagreeables we encounter and have type, and very wooden-headed into the to submit to. Don't you, Herr Saphir, bargain. Some friends were discussing think it excusable in a man to drink somethe match, and one lady happened to say, times?" Oh, yes!" replied the wit; "I wonder what Fraülein Wahrmann will " quite excusable, if he happen to sit next do with him." "Oh!" exclaimed Saphir, to you at dinner." A wealthy relative, of who was listening, "she is fond of paint- whom he wished to borrow a little money, ing, and may find him useful as a mahl-reproached him with his incapacity for stick." He was crossing the market-place business. "Why, you cannot even add!" with a friend, when a member of the com- exclaimed the fewish money-bags, sumedy troupe of the Court Theatre stopped ming up the writer's delinquencies. "No," and exchanged a few words with him. retorted the other; "but I can subtract, "Who was that?" said Saphir's compan- and if one were to subtract your money ion, when the player had gone. "Oh, from you, there would be only a nothing that is Waldeck, the actor.' "He does left." not look much like an actor off the stage," Isaid the other. "Still less when he's on the stage," retorted Saphir. Of another 'poor" player, a low comedian, he once remarked that, "jesting apart, he was not a bad actor." There was some difficulty, owing to the nature of the soil, in digging the foundation for a statue to be erected in honor of an important grand duke, famous for nothing in particular. The humorist and a friend passed the men at work. "What are they doing?" asked the latter. "Oh, they are trying to find ground for raising a monument to the Gross Herzog," was the reply. Driving out in the suburbs of Vienna one day, his coachman, a peppery Mieth-kutscher, got into an altercation with a rival Jehu. Words soon led to oaths, and oaths to blows, and the pair set to in good earnest to decide which was the better man. Popping his head out of the fiacre window, Saphir mildly implored the pair to oblige him, and drub each other as quickly as they could, for he had "engaged the carriage by the hour." But Saphir could be extremely rude, and was not unfrequently as coarse as Swift, of whom, by the way, he was a diligent student, for he was a master of English. At a ball, a young lady, heated with dancing, and one

[ocr errors]

Saphir was no respecter of persons, and nothing could abash him. King Ludwig of Bavaria, the verse-maker to whom he owed his expulsion from Munich, walked up to him one day, and tapping the felt hat he wore uttered the single word Fils. Now, Fils, which means "felt," is also a most opprobrious epithet, and the king's conduct was grossly insulting. In reply, Saphir merely touched the overcoat he wore, with the remark, Wasser-dichter,- that is to say, 66 waterproof." But as Dichter also means a poet, the term signified water-poet, a Germanism applied to one who is no poet at all. He could be as rude in an amiable fashion too. A young couple, newly engaged, were favored with a letter of introduction to him, which they duly presented. Now, the gentleman was notorious for his effeminate habits and ways, and his appearance at once struck the eye of the observant journalist, who had heard about him. He said nothing, received the pair with empressement, insisted upon their being seated in his most comfortable easy-chairs, . assured them how pleased he was to hear of their engagement, and wound up with, "Now, pray, you must, you really must, tell me which of you is the bride." elling in a second-class carriage between


[ocr errors]

Hamburg and Berlin, he had a little misunderstanding with a lady, the only occupant of the compartment beside himself, in reference to the opening of a window. "You don't appear to know the difference, mein Herr, between the second and third class," said the lady cuttingly. "Oh, madame!" replied Saphir, "I am an old railway traveller; I know all the class distinctions. In the first class, the passengers behave rudely to the guard; in the third, the guards behave rudely to the passengers; in the second (with a bow to his fellow-traveller), the passengers behave rudely to each other." Some of his briefer sayings are extremely droll. He once described a theatre as being so full that people were obliged to laugh perpendicularly, there was no room to do so horizontally. Of a dull townlet he vis ited, he remarked it was so quiet that but for an occasional death there would really be no life in the place. He was a big man, and when a little poet once threatened to run him through for an adverse criticism, he merely observed that he would thenceforth have to pull his boots up higher when he went abroad. His Jewishness was not often apparent in what he said or did. On one occasion, though, he showed that he was not unmindful of his origin. Dining at Rothschild's some fine lachryma Christi was placed on the table. Whence," " asked the financier, "does the wine get so strange a name?" "I suppose,' swered Saphir, "it is because good Christians must weep to think that a Jew should be able to treat his friends to such a superb beverage." It must be admitted, though, that, like Heine, whom he bitterly hated, he had little sympathy with those of his own race.


accompanied by a faithful henchman the dust-fiend demon even more diabolical in some of his attributes than his chief. You may know when the terror is coming by various indescribable tokens. Sometimes by an ominous silence; Na-. ture seems to listen with bated breath, and hushed whisper; the distance darkens, a lurid glow gradually overspreads the blue-vaulted sky, closing in rapidly, while blasts of heated air strike against the cheek as if just escaped from a fiery furnace. This is but a preliminary canter; soon the viewless presence falls into swift, full-measured paces, keeping up a continuous current of scorching wind that withers up the freshness of youth, and extinguishes the vitality of the most energetic worker. Be sure the attendant demon is not far off! Erelong a vast driving volume of dark clouds, densely opaque, draws nearer; there is a rush, a giddy whirl, a noise as of wings in the air, and then it leaps down upon you like an avalanche, only not of pure white snow, but dust- -loathsome, gritty, choking, spluttering, ear-filling, eye-blinding dust! It gets down your neck, up your coat-sleeves, and into your boots, your pockets - where does it not penetrate?

[ocr errors]

When on the rampage, there is nothing sacred to the dust-fiend. On Sundays, about the time of morning service, is a favorite hour for its dreaded appearance. It rushes past the disconcerted pew-openan-ers, sweeps up the church aisles, bedecks the cushions, and scatters the printed notices right and left. With strict impartiality it speeds alike down the hutter's chimney, formed of old kerosene-tins, and the Elizabethan stacks of fashionable suburban mansions; charges up the busy streets, flashes through the omnibuses, in at one window and out of the other, like the clown in a pantomime. But not all of it! not the six bushels! Shake yourself and see. Then it spins along the suburban highways, pounces down on the scavengers' heaps of dead leaves and other odds and ends of unconsidered trifles, and they are gone, and their place knows them no more. Poets seeking new tropes and figures of speech should try what can be made of an Australian dust-storm.

From Murray's Magazine. A HOT-WIND DAY IN AUSTRALIA.

"BRICKFIELDERS" they are called in Sydney; but then Sydney people are less æsthetic, less exigeant, and generally not so superfine as the people of Melbourne. Is not Melbourne a full day and a half nearer London and Paris, and its inhabitants therefore grander, more distinguished by the Vere de Vere repose, and a larger share of aplomb?

This dreaded wind is a northerner we are, be it remembered, in the southern hemisphere and comes raging from the heated interior like another Æolus, always

Every window in the cities is closed, and the heated blast chafes and howls about the casements in a frenzy of impotent rage. Should any one incautiously turn a street-corner particularly sprucely dressed, straightway it makes for him. The air soon becomes a combination of atoms as lively as aerated waters. The

« ElőzőTovább »