Obrázky na stránke


he stand during all his play-hours, as forget- was possible, and dashing upon him like an ful of his primer as if the weary art of print- osprey, soars up with him in his talons to the ing had never been invented, day after day, / bank, breaking his line as he hurries off to a week after week, month after month, in mute, spot of safety twenty yards from the pool, and deep, earnest, passionate, heart-mind-and-soul- then flinging him down on a heath-surrounded engrossing hope of some time or other catch- plat of sheep-nibbled verdure, lets him bounce ing a minnow or a beardie! A tugma tug! about till he is tired, and lies gasping with unWith face ten times flushed and pale by turns frequent and feeble motions, bright and beautiere you could count ten, he at last has strength, ful, and glorious with all his yellow light and in the agitation of his fear and joy, to pull away crimson lustre, spotted, speckled, and starred at the monster-and there he lies in his beauty in his scaly splendour, beneath a sun that never among the gowans and the greensward, for he shone before so dazzingly: but now the rahas whapped him right over his head and far diance of the captive creature is dimmer and away, a fish a quarter of an ounce in weight, obscured, for the eye of day winks and seems and, at the very least, two inches long! Off he almost shut behind that slow-sailing mass of flies, on wings of wind, to his father, mother, clouds, composed in equal parts of air, rain, and sisters and brothers, and cousins, and all and sunshine. the neighbourhood, holding the fish aloft in Springs, summers, autumns, winters-each both hands, still fearful of its escape, and, like within itself longer, by many times longer than a genuine child of corruption, his eyes brighten the whole year of grown-up life, that slips at at the first blush of cold blood on his small last through one's fingers like a knotless thread fumy fingers. He carries about with him, up- -pass over the curled darling's brow; and stairs and down-stairs, his prey upon a plate; look at him now, a straight and strengthy striphe will not wash his hands before dinner, for ling, in the savage spirit of sport, springing he exults in the silver scales adhering to the over rock-ledge after rock-ledge, nor heeding thumb-nail that scooped the pin out of the aught as he plashes knee-deep, or waistbandbaggy's maw-and at night, “cabin'd, cribb’d, high, through river-feeding torrents, to the gloconfined,” he is overheard murmuring in his rious music of his running and ringing reel, sleep-a thief, a robber, and a murderer, in his after a tongue-hooked salmon, insanely seeking yet infant dreams!

with the ebb of tide, but all in vain, the white From that hour Angling is no more a mere breakers of the sea. No hazel or willow wand, delightful day-dream, haunted by the dim hopes no half-crown rod of ash framed by village of imaginary minnows, but a reality-an art-wright, is now in his practised hands, of which a science-of which the flaxen-headed school- the very left is dexterous; but a twenty-feet boy feels himself to be master-a mystery in rod of Phin's, all ring-rustling, and a-glitter which he has been initiated; and off he goes with the preserving varnish, limber as the atnuw all alone, in the power of successful pas- tenuating line itself, and lithe to its topmost sion to the distant brook-brook a mile off- tenuity as the elephant's proboscis-the hiccory with fields, and hedges, and single trees, and and the horn without twist, knot, or flaw-from little groves, and a huge forest of six acres, be- / butt to fly a faultless taper, “fine by degrees tween it and the house in which he is boarded and beautifully less,” the beau-ideal of a rod or was born! There flows on the slender music by the skill of cunning craftsman to the senses of the shadowy shallows-there pours the materialized! A fish-fat, fair, and forty! “She deeper din of the birch-tree'd waterfall. The is a salmon, therefore to be woo'd-she is a scared water-pyet flits away from stone to stone, salmon, therefore to be won”—but shy, timid, and dipping, disappears among the airy bubbles, capricious, headstrong, now wrathful and now to him a new sight of joy and wonder. And oh! full of fear, like any other female whom the how sweet the scent of the broom or furze, yel- cruel artist has hooked by lip or heart, and, in lowing along the braes, where leap the lambs, spite of all her struggling, will bring to the less happy than he, on the knolls of sunshine! gasp at last; and then with calm eyes behold His grandfather has given him a half-crown rod | her lying in the shade dead or worse than dead, in two pieces-yes, his line is of hair twisted— fast-fading, and to be re-illumined no more the plaited by his own soon-instructed little fingers. lustre of her beauty, insensible to sun or By Heavens, he is fishing with the fly! And shower, even the most perishable of all perishthe Fates, who, grim and grisly as they are able things in a world of perishing !—But the painted to be by full-grown, ungrateful, lying salmon has grown sulky, and must be made to poets, smile like angels upon the paidler in the spring to the plunging-stone. There, suddenly, brook, winnowing the air with their wings into instinct with new passion, she shoots out of western breezes, while at the very first throw the foam like a bar of silver bullion; and, rethe yellow trout forsakes his fastness beneath lasping into the flood, is in another moment at the bog-wood, and with a lazy wallop, and the very head of the water fall! Give her the then a sudden plunge, and then a race like butt-give her the butt-or she is gone for ever lightning, changes at once the child into the with the thunder into ten fathom deep!-Now bəy, and

shoots through his thrilling and aching comes the trial of your tackle—and when was heart the ecstasy of a new life expanding in Phin ever known to fail at the edge of cliff or that glorious pastime, even as a rainbow on a cataract ? Her snout is southwards--right up sudden brightens up the sky. Fortuna favet the middle of the main current of the hill-born fortibus--and with one long pull, and strong river, as if she would seek its very course pull

, and pull altogether, Johnny lands a twelve- where she was spawned! She still swims incher on the soft, smooth, silvery sand of the swift, and strong, and deep--and the line goes only bay in all the burn where such an exploitsteady, boys, steady-stiff and steady as a Tory

in the roar of Opposition. There is yet in stem and round in head, visible and audible an hour's play in her dorsal fin--danger in too from afar the bee-resounding umbrage, the flap of her tail-and yet may her silver alike on stormy sea-coast and in sheltered inshoulder shatter the gut against a rock. land vale, still loving the roof of the fisherWhy the river was yesterday in spate, and she man's or peasant's cottage. is fresh run from the sea. All the lesser Then comes, perhaps, the city pop-gun, in waterfalls are now level with the flood, and shape like a very musket, such as soldiers she meets with no impediment or obstruction bear-a Christmas present from parent, once -the course is clear-no tree-roots here-no a colonel of volunteers-nor feeble to discharge floating branches-for during the night they the pea-bullet or barley-shot, formidable to face diave all been swept down to the salt loch. and eyes; nor yet unfelt, at six paces, by hinIn medio tutissimas ibis-ay, now you feel she der-end of playmate, scornfully yet fearfully begins to fail—the butt tells now every time exposed. But the shooter soon tires of such you deliver your right. What! another mad ineffectual trigger--and his soul, as well as leap! yet another sullen plunge! She seems his hair, is set on fire by that extraordinary absolutely to have discovered, or rather to be compound-Gunpowder. He begins with burnan impersonation of, the Perpetual Motion. King off his eyebrows on the King's birthday; Stand back out of the way, you son of a sea- squibs and crackers follow, and all the pleacook !--you in the tattered blue breeches, with sures of the pluff. But he soon longs to let the tail of your shirt hanging out. Who the off a gun—"and follow to the field some wardevil sent you all here, ye vagabonds ?--Ha! like lord”-in hopes of being allowed to disWatty Ritchie, my man, is that you ? God charge one of the double-barrels, after Ponto bless your honest laughing phiz! What Watty, has made his last point, and the half-hidden would you think of a Fish like that about chimneys of home are again seen smoking Peebles? Tam Grieve never gruppit sae heavy among the trees. This is his first practice in a ane since first he belanged to the Council.- fire arms, and from that hour he is a Shooter. Curse that colley! Ay! well done, Watty !

Then there is in most rural parishes and Stone him to Stobbo. Confound these stirks- of rural parishes alone do we condescend to if that white one, with caving horns, kicking speak-a pistol, a horse one, with a bit of silver heels, and straight-up tail, come bellowing by on the butt-perhaps one that originally served between us and the river, then, “Madam! ail in the Scots Greys. It is bought, or borrowed, is lost, except honour!" If we lose this Fish by the young shooter, who begins firing first at six o'clock, then suicide at seven. Our will at barn-doors, then at trees, and then at living is made—ten thousand to the Foundling—ditto things—a strange cur, who, from his lolling to the Thames Tunnel-ha-ha--my Beauty! tongue may be supposed to have the hydrophobia Methinks we could fain and fond kiss thy silver -a cat that has purred herself asleep on the side, languidly lying afloat on the foam as if sunny churchyard wall, or is watching mice at all further resistance now were vain, and grace their hole-mouths among the graves a waterfully thou wert surrendering thyself to death! rat in the mill-lead-or weasel that, running to No faith in female-she trusts to the last trial his retreat in the wall, always turns round to look of her tail-sweetly workest thou, O Reel of at you-a goose wandered from his common Reels! and on thy smooth axle spinning in disappointed love-or brown duck, easily sleep’st, even, as Milton describes her, like our mistaken by the unscrupulous for a wild one, own worthy planet. Scrope-Bainbridge, in pond remote from human dwelling, or on Maule-princes among Anglers-oh! that you meadow by the river side, away from the clack were here! Where the devil is Sir Humphry? of the muter-mill. The corby-crow, too, shoutAt his retort? By mysterious sympathy-far ed out of his nest on some tree lower than off at his own Trows, the Kerss feels that we usual, is a good flying mark to the more adare killing the noblest fish-whose back ever vanced class: or morning magpie, a-chatter rippled the surface of deep or shallow in the at skreigh of day close to the cottage door Tweed. Tom Purdy stands like a seer, en- among the chickens; or a flock of pigeons tranced in glorious vision, beside turreted Ab- wheeling overhead on the stubble field, or sitbotsford. Shade of Sandy Govan! Alas! alas! ting so thick together, that every stock is blue l'oor Sandy-why on thy pale face that melan- with tempting plumage. choly smile !-Peter! The Gaff! The Gaff! But the pistol is discharged for a fowling Into the eddy she sails, sick and slow, and al- piece-brown and rusty, with a slight crack most with a swirl-whitening as she nears the probably in the muzzle, and a lock out of all sand--there she has it--struck right into the proportion to the barrel. Then the young shoulder, fairer than that of Juno, Diana, Mi- shooter aspires at halfpennies thrown up into nerva, or Venus-and lies at last in all her glo- the air-and generally hit, for there is never rious length and breadth of beaming beauty, wanting an apparent dent in copper metal ; fit prey for giant or demigod angling before and thence he mounts to the glancing and the Flood!

skimming swallow, a household bird, and there

fore to be held sacred, but shot at on the excuse And I would wish my days to be

of its being next to impossible to hit him-an Bound each to each by natural piety!"

opinion strengthened into belief by several So much for the Angler. The Shooter, summers' practice. But the small brown and again, he begins with his pipe-gun, formed of white marten wheeling through below the the last year's growth of a branch of the plane-bridge, or along the many-holed red sand-bank, tree-the beautiful dark-green-leaved and fra- is admitted by all boys to be fair game and grant-flowered plane-tree-that stands straight still more, the longed-winged legless black

« The child is father of the man,

devilet, that, if it falls to the ground, cannot rise fastening a knowing eye on dunce and ne'er. again, and therefore screams wheeling round do-weel, holds up, in silent warning, the terror the corners and battlements of towers and cas- of the taws. Frequent flogging will cowe the tes, or far out even of cannon shot, gambles spirit of the best man and dog in Britain, in companies of hundreds, and regiments of a Ponto travels now in fear and trembling but a thousand, aloft in the evening ether, within few yards from his tyrant's feet, till, rousing the orbit of the eagle's flight. It seems to boy- himself to the sudden scent of something smell. ish eyes, that the creatures near the earth, ing strongly, he draws slowly and beautifully, when but little blue sky is seen between the and specks and the wallflowers growing on the

“There fir'd, a perfect semicirle stands." coign of vantage--the signal is given to fire; Up runs the Tyro ready-cocked, and, in his but the devilets are too high in heaven to smell eagerness, stumbling among the stubble, when, the sulphur. The starling whips with a shrill hark and lo! the gabble of grey goslings, and cry into his nest, and nothing falls to the ground the bill-protruded hiss of goose and gander ! bnt a tiny bit of mossy mortar inhabited by a Bang goes the right-hand barrel at Ponto, who spider!

now thinks it high time to be off to the tune But the Day of Days arrives at last, when of “ower the hills and far awa'," while the the school-boy, or rather the college boy; return- young gentleman, half-ashamed and half-in. ing to his rural vacation, (for in Scotland censed, half-glad and half-sorry, discharges the college winters tread close, too close, on the left-hand barrel, with a highly improper curse, heels of academies) has a gun—a gun in a at the father of the feathered family before him, case-a double-barrel too-of his own—and is who receives the shot like a ball in his breast, provided with a license, probably without any throws a somerset quite surprising for a bird other qualification than that of hit or miss. On of his usual habits, and after biting the dust some portentous morning he effulges with the with his bill, and thumping it with his bottom, sun in velveteen jacket and breeches of the breathes an eternal farewell to this sublunary same-many-buttoned gaiters, and an unker-scene-and leaves himself to be paid for at chiefed throat. 'Tis the fourteenth of Septem- the rate of eighteenpence a pound to his justly ber, and lo! a pointer at his heels-Ponto, of irritated owner, on whose farm he had led a course-a game-bag like a beggar's wallet at long and not only harmless, but honourable his side-destined to be at eve as full of charity and useful life. -and all the paraphernalia of an accomplished It is nearly as impossible a thing as we sportsman. Proud, were she to see the sight, know, to borrow a dog about the time the sun would be the “mother that bore him;" the has reached his meridian, on the First Day of heart of that old sportsman, his daddy, would the Partridges. Ponto by this time has sneaked, sing for joy! The chained mastiff in the yard unseen by human eye, into his kennel, and yowls his admiration; the servant lasses uplift coiled himself up into the arms of “tired Nathe pane of their garret, and, with suddenly ture's sweet restorer, balmy sleep.” A farmer withdrawn blushes, titter their delight in their makes offer of a colley, who, from numbering rich paper curls and pure night-clothes. Rab among his paternal ancestors a Spanish pointer, Roger, who has been cleaning out the barn, is quite a Don in his way among the cheepers, comes forth to partake of the caulker; and and has been known in a turnip field to stand away go the footsteps of the old poacher in an attitude very similar to that of setting. and his pupil through the autumnal rime, off Luath has no objection to a frolic over the to the uplands, where--for it is one of the ear- fields, and plays the part of Ponto to perfection. liest of harvests——there is scarcely a single At last he catches sight of a covey basking, acre of standing corn. The turnip fields are and, leaping in upon them open-mouthed, debright green with hope and expectation--and spatches them right and left, even like the facoveys are couching on lazy beds beneath mous dog Billy killing rats in the pit at Westthe potato-shaw. Every high hedge, ditch- minster. The birds are bagged with a gentle guarded on either side, shelters its own brood remonstrance, and Luath's exploit rewarded imagination hears the whir shaking the dew with a whang of cheese. Elated by the presdrops from the broom on the brae-and first sure on his shoulder, the young gentleman one bird, and then another, and then the re- laughs at the idea of pointing; and fires away, maining number, in itself no contemptible co- like winking, at every uprise of birds, near or vey, seems to fancy's ear to spring single, or in remote; works a miracle by bringing down three the clouds, from the coppice brushwood with at a time, that chanced, unknown to him, to be here and there an intercepting standard tree. crossing, and wearied with such slaughter,

Poor Ponto is much to be pitied. Either lends his gun to the attendant farmer, who can having a cold in his nose, or having ante-break-mark down to an inch, and walks up to the fasted by stealth on a red herring, he can scent dropped pout as if he could kick her up with nothing short of a badger, and, every other field, his foot; and thus the bag in a few hours is he starts in horror, shame, and amazement, to half full of feathers; while, to close with eclat 'hear himself, without having attended to his the sport of the day, the cunning elder takes points, enclosed in a whirring covey. He is him to a bramble bush, in a wall nook, at the still duly taken between those inexorable edge of the wood, and returning the gun into "knees; out comes the speck-and-span new his hands, shows him poor pussy sitting with dog-whip, heavy enough for a horse ; and the open eyes, fast asleep! The pellets are in her yowl of the patient is heard over the whole brain, and turning herself over, she crunkles parish. Mothers press their yet unchastised out to her full length, like a piece of untwisting irfants to their breasts; and the schoolmaster, | Indian rubber, and is dead. The posterior

poach of ihc jacket, yet unstained by blood, | ing birds—young larks, perhaps, walking on the yawns 10 liceive her-and in she goes plump; lea-or young linnets hanging on the broom paws, ears, body, fect, fud, and all-while Luath, down by yonder in the holm lands, where there all the way home to the Mains, keeps snoking are no trees, exceptindeed that one glorious sinat the red drops oozing through; for well he gle tree, the Golden Oak, and he is guarded by knows, in summer's heat and winter's cold, Glowrer, and then what a most capital chase! the smell of pussy, whether sitting beneath a Stretching herself up with crooked back, as tuft of withered grass on the brae, or burrowed if taking a yawn-off she jumps, with tremenbeneath a snow wreath. A hare, we certainly dous spangs, and tail, thickened with fear and must say, in spite of haughtier sportsman's anger, perpendicular. Youf—youf-youf-go scorn, is, when sitting, a most satisfactory shot. the terriers-head over heels perhaps in their

But let us trace no further thus, step by step, fury-and are not long in turning her-and the Pilgrim's Progress. Look at him nowma bringing her to bay at the hedge-root, all finished sportsman-on the moors--the bright ablaze and abristle. A she-devil incarnate! black boundless Dalwhinnie moors, stretching Hark—all at once now strikes up a trio-Caaway, by long Loch Erricht side, into the dim talani caterwauling the treble-Glowrer taking and distant day that hangs, with all its clouds, the bass--and Tearer the tenor--a cruel conover the bosom of far Loch Rannoch. Is that cert cut short by a squalling throttler. Awaythe pluffer at partridge-pouts who had nearly away along the holm--and over the knowebeen the death of poor Ponto ? Lord Kennedy and into the wood—for lo! the gudewife, bran. himself might take a lesson now from the dishing a besom, comes flying demented withstraight and steady style in which on the moun-out her mutch down to the murder of her tabby tain brow, and up to the middle in heather, he -her son, a stout stripling, is seen skirting the brings his Manton to the deadly level! More un- potato-field to intercept our flight--and, most erring eye never glanced along brown barrel! formidable of all foes, the Man of the House Finer forefinger never touched a trigger! Fol- himself, in his shirt-sleeves and fail in his low him a whole day, and not one wounded bird. hand, bolts from the barn, down the croft, All most beautifully arrested on their flight by across the burn, and up the brae, to cut us off instantaneous death! Down dropped right from the Manse. The hunt's up-and 'tis a and left, like lead on the heather-old cock and capital steeple chase. Disperse—disperse! hen, singled out among the orphaned brood, as Down the hill, Jack-up the hill, Gill-dive calmly as a cook would do it in the larder from the dell, Kit-thread the wood, Pat--a hunamong a pile of plumage. No random shot dred yards' start is a great matter-a stern within-no needless shot out of distance-chase is always a long chase--schoolboys are covered every feather before stir of finger, generally in prime wind-the old man begins and body, back, and brain, pierced, broken, to puff and blow, and snort, and put his paws shattered! And what perfect pointers! There to his paunch-the son is thrown out by a they stand, as still as death-yet instinct with double of dainty Davy’s--and the “sair belife-the whole half dozen! Mungo, the black-grutten mither” is gathering up the torn and tanned--Don, the red-spotted-Clara, the snow- tattered remains of Tortoise-shell Tabby, and white—Primrose, the pale yellow-Basto, the invoking the vengeance of heaven and earth bright brown, and Nimrod, in his coat of many on her pitiless murderers. Some slight relief colours, often seen afar through the mists like to her bursting and breaking heart to vow,

she will make the minister hear of it on the So much for the Angler's and the Shooter's deafest side of his head-ay, even if she have Progress-now briefly for the Hunter's. Hunt- to break in upon him sitting on Saturday night, ing, in this country, unquestionably commences getting aff by rote his-fushionless sermon, in with cats. Few cottages without a cat. If you his ain study. do not find her on the mouse watch at the gable Now, gentle reader, again observe, that end of the house just at the corner, take a solar though we have now described, con amore, a observation, and by it look for her on bank or most cruel case of cat-killing, in which we brae-somewhere about the premises—if un- certainly did play a most aggravated part, successful, peep into the byre, and up through some Sixty Years since, far indeed are we a hole among the dusty divots of the roof, and from recommending such wanton barbarity chance is you see her eyes glittering far-ben to the rising generation. We are not inditing in the gloom; but if she be not there either, a homily on humanity to animals, nor have into the barn and up on the mow, and surely we been appointed to succeed the Rev. Dr. she is on the straw or on the baulks below the Somerville of Currie, the great Patentee of the kipples. ' No. Well, then, let your eye travel Safety Double Bloody Barrel, to preach the along the edge of that little wood behind the annual Gibsonian sermon on that subjectcottage-ay, yonder she is !_but she sees both we are simply stating certain matters of fact, you and your two terriers--one rough and the illustrative of the rise and progress of the love other smooth-and, slinking away through a of pastime in the soul, and leave our readers gap in the old hawthorn hedge in among the to draw the moral. But may we be permitted hazels, she either lies perdu, or is up a fir-tree to say, that the naughtiest schoolboys often almost as high as the magpie's or corby's nest. make the most pious men; that it does not

Now-observe-shooting cats is one thing, follow according to the wise saws and modern and hunting them is* another-and shooting instances of prophetic old women of both sexes, and hunting, though they may be united, are that he who in boyhood has worried a cat with here treated separately; so, in the present case, terriers, will, in manhood, commit murder on the cat makes her escape. But get her watch. I one of his own species ; or that peccadilloes


a meteor.

are the progenitors of capital crimes. Nature / castles after wall-flowers and starlings-being allows to growing lads a certain range of wick- run away with in carts by colts against turnedness, sans peur et sans reproche. She seems, pike gates—buying bad ballads from young indeed, to whistle into their ear, to mock an- gipsy-girls, who, on receiving a sixpence, give cient females—to laugh at Quakers—to make ever so many kisses in return, saying, “Take mouths at a descent man and his wife riding your change out of that;"-on a borrowed double to church-the matron's thick legs lu- broken-knee'd pony, with a switch-tail-a dedicrously bobbing from the pillion, kept firm vil for galloping—not only attending countryon Dobbin's rump by her bottom,ponderibus races for a saddle and collar, but entering for librata suis,”—to tip the wink to young women and winning the prize-dancing like a devil during sermon on Sunday-and on Saturday, in barns at kirns-seeing his blooming partner most impertinently to kiss them, whether they home over the blooming heather, most perilous will or no, on high-road or by-path--and to per- adventure of all in which virgin-puberty can petrate many other little nameless enormities. be involved-fighting with a rival in corduroy

No doubt, at the time, such things will wear breeches, and poll shorn beneath a caup, till rather a suspicious character; and the boy who his eyes just twinkle through the swollen blue is detected in the fact, must be punished by -and, to conclude “ this strange eventful hispawmy, or privation, or imprisonment from tory," once brought home at one o'clock in the play. But when punished, he is of course left morning, God knows whence or by whom, and free to resume his atrocious career; nor is it found by the shrieking servant, sent out to found that he sleeps a whit the less soundly, listen for him in the moonlight, dead-drunk on or shrieks for Heaven's mercy in his dreams. the gravel at the gate! Conscience is not a craven.

Groans belong

Nay, start not, parental reader-nor, in the to guilt. But fun and frolic, even when tres- terror of anticipation, send, without loss of a passes, are not guilt; and though a cat have single day, for your son at a distant academy, nine lives, she has but one Ghost--and that mayhap pursuing even such another career. will haunt no house where there are terriers. Trust thou to the genial, gracious, and benign What! surely if you have the happiness of vis medicatrix naturæ. What though a few clouds being a parent you would not wish your only bedim and deform “the innocent brightness of boy--your son and heir-the blended image the new-born day?” Lo! how splendid the of his mother's loveliness and his father's meridian ether! What though the frost seem manly beauty—to be a smug, smooth, prim, to blight the beauty of the budding and blowand proper prig, with his hair always combed ing rose? Look how she revives beneath dew, down on his forehead, hands always unglaured, rain, and sunshine, till your eyes can even and without spot or blemish on his white-thread scarce endure the lustre! What though the stockings? You would not wish him, surely, waters of the sullen fen seem to pollute the to be always moping and musing in a corner snow of the swan? They fall off from her exwith a good book held close to his nose-bo- panded wings, and, pure as a spirit, she soars tanizing with his maiden aunts--doing the away, and descends into her own silver lake, pretty at tea-tables with tabbies, in handing stainless as the water-lilies floating round her round the short-bread, taking cups, and attend-breast. And shall the immortal soul suffer ing to the kettle-telling tales on all naughty lasting contamination from the transient boys and girls—laying up his penny a-week chances of its nascent state--in this, less fapocket-money in a penny pig—keeping all his voured than material and immaterial things clothes neatly folded up in an untumbled that perish? No-it is undergoing endless drawer-having his own peg for his uncrushed transmigrations--every hour a being differhat-saying his prayers precisely as the clock ent, yet the same-dark stains blotted outstrikes nine, while his companions are yet at rueful inscriptions effaced-many an erasure blind-man's buff-and puffed up every Sabbath-of impressions once thought permanent, but eve by the parson's praises of his uncommon soon altogether forgotten--and vindicating, in memory for a sermon-while all the other boys the midst of the earthly corruption in which it are scolded for having fallen asleep before is immersed, its own celestial origin, characTenthly? You would not wish him, surely, ter, and end, often flickering, or seemingly to write sermons himself at his tender years, blown out, like a taper in the wind, but all at nay-even to be able to give you chapter and once self-reillumined, and shining in inextinverse for every quotation from the Bible ? No. guishable and self-fed radiance-like a star in Better far that he should begin early to break heaven. your heart, by taking no care even of his Sun- Therefore, bad as boys too often are-and a day clothes-blotting his copy-impiously pin- disgrace to the mother who bore them the ning pieces of paper to the Dominie's tail, who cradle in which they were rocked—the nurse to him was a second father-going to the fish- by whom they were suckled-the schoolmas. ing not only without leave but against orders- ter by whom they were flogged-and the hang. bathing in the forbidden pool, where the tai- man by whom it was prophesied they were to lor was drowned-drying powder before the be executed-wait patiently for a few years, school-room fire, and blowing himself and and you will see them all transfigured one two crack-sculled cronies to the ceiling—tying into a preacher of such winning eloquence, kettles to the tails of dogs-shooting an old that he almost persuades all men to be Chris. woman's laying hen--galloping bare-backed tians-another into a parliamentary orator. shelties down stony steeps-climbing trees to who commands the applause of listening sen the slenderest twig on which bird could build, ates, and and up the tooth-of-time-intended sides of old “ Reads his history in a nation's eyes,”

« PredošláPokračovať »