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vor to restore order to her house again. The soiled curtains, the dented furniture, the stained carpets, and fractured china madeadiscouraging review; and her husband's namesake, proud of his first suit with brass buttons, had slid down two stories of banisters repeatedly, scoring the newly varnished rail, as he had done the mahogany bedsteads and bureau in the room his mother had occupied.
Marie could not help a few tears of vexation; but it was Morgan's own sister, and she had almost romantic ideasof forbearance towards one's husband's relations, which had helped her to endure with Mrs. Lockwood's unconscious dietatorship. Now that she knew them both, the balance was in Mrs. Lockwood's favor. She had many noble traits, certainly, and a high sense of honor, which appeared to be entirely wanting in Sophie. She had never heard Mrs. Lockwood detail the unpleasant points of any one's character, not even Sophie's, and there were enough of them. Now that they were separated, and Marie had her own way a little more, she thought she could really love her eldest sister-in-law, if Harriet would only let her!
But the yearning desire to see her own family was only the stronger with every such review; after all, no one else could understand her or make allowances for her so well, not even Morgan; he always expected so much of every one, just as Mrs. Lockwood did, and was so quick at seeing faults in other people. It seemed a great while since she had seen aunty, and by and by it would not be pleasant to have Gilbert, so she ventured to bring the subject up again.
"Don't you think June would be a nice time to have Aunt Pierson and Gilbert here?" she suggested, with great apparent carelessness, the first evening they were alone again.
Poor little dissembler! she had been an hour coaxing him into unqualified good-humor, and waiting for the propitious moment to arrive; but for all the petting and smiles of the moment before, Mr. Ash's face clouded, and he said, coldly:—
"I did not know it was decided to have them come at all! You seem bent on filling up your house with visitors"—as if she had invited Sophie, or the Taylor family were her relations! It was too bad, after all she had gone through with, and for his sake, too!
But she would not quarrel if she could help it; it cost her too much to make up again. So she choked down the indignant retort, and said a little tremulously—" It seems ages since
I have seen aunty 1 Only think—a whole year!"
"You talk as if /had prevented your going to see her whenever you liked," said Mr. Ash, sitting erect, and drawing his arm away from her as she perched upon his knee.
"But you never have been ready to go with me, Morgan; you know yourself how disappointed I was last fall. You would have made time, if you had cared to go!" And here the morbid sensitiveness on the subject of home got the better of her prudence. Morgan hated reproaches, but reproaches and tears are a woman's only weapons.
"I dare say I should have," the withering court tone now, and he moved so impatiently that she stood up. It was the commencement of two days of miserable coldness and estrangement, and Marie felt as ill as if she had endured bodily suffering, before she could make up her mind to say, "It was my fault;" a concession which was always expected of her, and thus far always conceded, sometimes at the expense of truth.
"But if you knew how I long to see aunty: there is so much that I want to talk to her about." The concession, and Marie's employment at that moment, a little bit of embroidery, destined for the first little bit of a garment, overcame any distaste to the plan.
"Would it make my penitent little wife, very, very happy t"
"Oh, so happy, you don't know." And the wan face took up its old brightness. "I knew you would consent! you kind, good, darling husband 1"
When we reflect that the individual to whom these endearing epithets were applied had not spoken to her, except it was absolutely necessary, for the last forty-eight hours; had eaten his meals and read his newspaper in the most ungracious silence, had studied ways and means of making her feel his displeasure, and that the cause was a natural inclination on her part to have a visit from the friends she loved best in the world, it may be considered a question as to whether he deserved them. But the granting consent was a favor now, and a favor conferred disposes one favorably towards the recipient.
"If you only knew how to take me, Marie; but you do say such provoking things."
"I dare say." The very words he had used the night of the altercation, but in such B very different tone; so humble, so self-accusing.
So Mrs. Pierson and Gilbert arrived in course of time; but poor Marie had been too nervously anxious that her husband should show them
dne attention, and had been "hurt" in the morning because Morgan would not meet them at the station, and was so fearful he wonld betray any lack of warmth or interest towards them, that her joy in the meeting was sadly clonded. Instead of the happy evening she had pictured, she was constantly preoccupied in diverting the conversation to indifferent channels, lest Gilbert should happen to stumble on some of his pet theories, which her hnsband would dispute, or Aunt Pierson's sharp eyes should detect the alteration in Morgan's manner towards her, which was so painfully evident to herself; and this was a type of the whole visit. It brought about one thing, though; with Mr. Ash's forced civilities, and Mrs. Lockwood's formal hospitality, Mrs. Ford's evident recognition of Aunt Pierson's good points, and the Doctor's cordial admiration of Gilbert's unusual self-cultivation, opened her heart towards them as nothing else had ever done.
She was doubly watchful over every word and action towards her husband. It was bad enough to have those constantly recurring uupleasant scenes in secret, but it would kill her to have her anut gues3 the truth, that she was not perfectly happy; and if Morgan happened to find fault with anything, she knew Aunt Pierson would take her part, and that Morgan never would put up with.
The explosion came, for all her care, and just as she expected it would. Gilbert fortunately was not present; having gone on a morning's rounds in the country with Doctor Ford. Morgan had been out of temper in the morning at some trifling neglect on her part, growing out of her constant occupation with her aunt; and to conciliate him, Marie had taken unusual pains with the dinner; she had selected his favorite joint, and made the pndding with her own hands, but the lamb was "roasted to a cinder," and the pndding "heavy as lead."
"I do wish you would look after that girl of yours, Marie; that's the second time this week the meat has been spoiled. You know very well how I like it—neither too rare, nor too well done—just as Harriet always had it."
To be found fault with in that ungracious tone before her aunt was bad enough, but to have Harriet's skill and management perpetually held up before her was more than she could bear, added to her own disappointment, when she had taken so much pains.
"You were so late to-day, Morgan; the lamb was just right at two o'clock." He had never taken such liberties with his sister's dinner
hour, and if he or Jndge Lockwood was detained in court, the meal was served all the same.
It was not in human nature to look into that dear face, so changed since it had left her own roof, and see the tears forced back from the heavy eyes, without speaking, when she knew her to be unjustly blamed.
"I don't think you ought to scold her, Mr. Ash; she's been in the kitchen the whole morning." Aunt Pierson's tone rather than her words conveyed reproof.
"I am the best judge of my own actions." Marie's deprecating look from one to the other was unheeded. Oh, if her aunt would only not mind! she did not know Morgan.
"She's all overdone now," continued Aunt Pierson, warmly; "and shaking like a leaf, she's so tired out. She works altogether too hard all the time; she never was used to it."
"I never allow any one to interfere in my house, or in any of my affairs!" said Mr. Ash, with the flashing eyes Marie knew too well. "Those who don't approve of what they see are at liberty to leave!"
"Oh, Morgan," groaned Marie, as the harsh, insulting words fell upon her ears, "how can you f to aunty, too!"
Mr. Ash pushed away his almost untasted dinner, and left the house. He had said more than he intended, as all angry people do; but he excused it to himself, as he walked rapidly back to his office.
To be told that his wife was making a slave of herself, when he could afford to hire twenty servants; and to be taken up at his own table for speaking as he chose! It was a little too much for any man to take patiently. And Marie always in tears, always pleading sickness —it was just what he hated. No, it was just as Harriet said, she was no housekeeper, and did not know how to manage.
"Oh, Aunt, if you had not noticed it!" sobbed Marie, as the dining-room door closed heavily. "Morgan can't bear to be found fault with!"
"I never saw the man that could," said Aunt Pierson, decidedly; "and I see just how it goes all the time. You, poor child, you! I knew, the minute I saw you, something was wrong. You give up to him too much; you spoil him. I should have liked to hear Gilbert's father speaking so to me—guess I should! No, he knew better. He could have had the house to himself the second time ; but Mr. Ash needn't think he's going to get me out of the way so soon. I came to see you, and I'm going to, in spite of him. No more than I always said though. I said, that very first time he entered the house, he's a selfish man; he wants his own way in everything."
"But, aunt, you don't know how good and kind he is sometimes. He loves me dearly— indeed he does!"
"Pretty way of showing it, and in your state of health, too I I guess the Judge never talks to Mrs. Lockwood in that style; no, nor Dr. Ford to his wife either!" Which suggestion was sympathizing, and relieved Aunt Pierson's excited feelings, but it was far from wise.
"I can't bear to think of going back, anyhow," said the good woman, rising, with a sweep from the table, and dropping into a rocking-chair, which was soon in full career. "Going away, and leaving you with that man! Why I never saw such a temper! He looked at me as if he was going to ily at me with the carving-knife. I don't know how to forgive myself for letting you marry him, knowing so little of him as we did, and coming way off here. You, poor child, you!"
And with these sentiments on both sides it is not strange that Marie was almost relieved when the loug-talked-of, long-hoped-for visit came to an end. She was so afraid that there would be another outbreak ; and thought that, if they were only alone again, Morgan would come out of the mood he had been in ever since the unfortunate dinner.
"We shall never be happy unless we are alone," sighed the little wife to herself. "I wonder if aunt is right, and I do give up too much. O dear! Why do girls ever get married?"
And to see Gilbert, who knew nothing of the affair (she had made her aunt promise not to tell him), and who was as blind to everybody's failings as her husband was sharp-sighted—to hear him urge Mr. Ash to visit them, and thank him for his hospitality, in Gilbert's old-fashioned, ceremonious way, Marie could not bear to see such kind feeling so utterly thrown away. She half wished her cousin knew that they had been there only on sufferance; and yet Gilbert went the more happily through life, for this very blindness to disagreeable points in other people.
Marie took out her work-basket and sat down by the window from which she had seen them drive away. We do not like weeping heroines, but it is undeniable that Marie, at this time in her life, cried a great deal too much for her own or her husband's happiness, or for the good of
her eyesight. Her tears fell on the little robe she was shaping.
"I wonder if my dear, precious baby is going to be a disappointment V she said to herself. "It seems as if everything I depended on does disappoint me; and I expected to be so very, very happy!"
THE IMPERIAL CROWN OF ENGLAND.
The Imperial State crown of her Majesty Queen Victoria was made by Messrs. Rnndell and Bridge, in the year 1838, with jewels taken from old crowns and others furnished by command of her Majesty. It consists of diamonds, pearls, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds set in silver and gold: it has a crimson velvet cap, with ermine border, and is lined with white silk. Its gross weight is 39 oz. 5dwt. troy. The lower part of the band, above the ermine border, consists of B row of one hundred and twenty-nine pearls, and the upper part of the band, a row of one hundred and twelve pearls, between which, and in front of the crown, is a large sapphire (partly drilled), purchased for the crown by his Majesty King George IV. At the back is two sapphire of smaller size, and six other sapphires (three on each side), between which are eight emeralds. Above and below the seven sapphires are fourteen diamonds, and around the eight emeralds one hundred and twenty-eight diamonds. Between the emeralds and sapphires are sixteen trefoil ornaments, containing one hundred and sixty diamonds. Above the hand are eight sapphires surmounted by eight diamonds, between which are eight festoons consisting of one hundred and fortyeight diamonds. In the front of the crown, and in the centre of a diamond Maltese cross, is the famous ruby said to have been given to Edward Prince of Wales, son of Edward Ill., called the Black Prince, by Don Pedro, King of Castile, after the battle of Najera, near Vittoria, A. D. 1337. This ruby was worn in the helmet of Henry V. at the battle of Agincourt, A. D. 1415. It is pierced quite through, after the Eastern custom, the upper part of the piercing being filled up by B small ruby. Around this ruby, to form the cross, are seventy-five brilliant diamonds. Three other Maltese crosses, forming the two sides and back of the crown, have emerald centres, and contain respectively one hundred and thirty-two, one hundred and twenty-four, and one hundred and thirty brilliant diamonds. Between the four Maltese crosses are four ornaments in the form of the French flenr-de-lis, with four rubies in the centres, and surrounded by rose diamonds, containing respectively eighty-five, eighty-six, eighty-six, and eighty-seven rose diamonds. From the Maltese crosses issue four imperial arches composed of oak-leaves and acorns; the leaves containing seven hundred and twenty-eight rose, table, and brilliant diamonds ; thirty-two pearls forming the acorns set in cups containing fiftyfour rose diamonds and one table diamond. The total number of diamonds in the arches and acorns is one hundred and eight brilliants, one hundred and sixteen table, and five hundred and fifty-nine rose diamonds. From the upper part of the arches are suspended four large pendent pear-shaped pearls, with rose diamond caps, containing twelve rose diamonds, and stems containing twenty-four very small rose diamonds. Above the arch stands the mound, containing in the lower hemisphere three hundred and four brilliants, and in the upper two hundred and fifty-four brilliants; the zone and are being composed of thirty-three rose diamonds. The cross on the summit has a rose-cut sapphire in the center, surrounded by four large brilliants, and one hundred and eight smaller brilliants. Summary of jewels comprised in the crown: 1 large ruby irregularly polished, 1 large broad-spread sapphire, 16 sapphires, 11 emeralds, 4 rubies, 1363 brilliant diamonds, 1273 rose diamonds, 147 table diamonds, 4 drop-shaped pearls, and 273 pearls.
We can pass by the tomb of a man with somewhat of calm indifference, but when we survey the grave of a female a sigh involuntarily escapes us. With the holy name of woman, we associate every soft, tender, and delicate affection. We think of her as the young and bashful virgin, with eyes sparkling, and cheeks crimsoned with each impassioned feeling of the heart; as the chaste and virtuous matron, tried with the follies of the world, and preparing for the grave to which she must soon descend. There is something in contemplating the character of a woman that raises the soul far above the level of society. She is formed to adorn and humanize mankind, to soothe his cares and strew his path with flowers. In the hour of distress she is the rock on which he leans for support, and when fate calls him from existence her tears bedew his grave. Can you
look upon her tomb without emotion? Man has always justice done to his memory; woman never. The pages of history lie open to one; but the meek and unobtrusive excellences of the other sleep with her unnoticed in the grave. In her may have shone the genius of a poet with the virtues of a saint. She, too, may have passed along the sterile path of existence, and felt for others as we now feel for her.
THE OLD HOUSE ON THE SHORE.
BT ELLA C. RLdlN.
A Tebanti.rss wreck on that lonely shore Stood the old hoase battered and brown, The surf dashed In at the open door, And the lattice was broken down, While through the chinks of the crazy roof drifted the
wino-red rain, And drenched the torn curtains that ever bent on the broken window-pane.
They say when the thunder-cannons rent
The ramparts of the maddened sky, When the giant billows in fury went Down where tho treasure-caverns lie, They struck the abode of the demons who dwell on the ocean floor,
And boro them up with their mighty arms to the house upon the shore.
And marvollous tales were told to me,
Of tho friends from the ocean flood:
The voice of the wind, and their eyes of blood Peered from the broken windows throughout the restless night,
Whilo the old door creaked on its hinges, and the dueling shook with fright.
If the house was the haunt of tho tempest,
It was loved by the sunshine as well! And the sun never set in the red west, Where his ensign Imperial fell, But he played in her nooks and corners, and gave her
his parting light, Ere he wound her up in his rosy veil to kiss her a sweet good-night.
I have often sat in the low door-way,
To listen to the wall that the writers gave; I have seen from the old house, many a day, The white sails ploughing the ocean wave, And longed to know the fate of those who loved the
sounding main, Who came to live on that lonely shore—yet no trace could I obtain.
It had been a frowning, perilous night,
But the gate of the sky let the dawn In fair; The ocean was sheeted with silver lightBut where was the old gray ruin? whore? The blue waves sang their morning hymn to the sand
upon the shore, And the sun looked sad and lonesome, for the gray house was no more.
BT TIIB AUTItOE OP
Bangs must be a sincere friend of mine, after all, or he wouldn't have been so good about taking me to see Miss Mndge. I passed an excruciating evening, showing myself off to that frightful old creature, and secretly watching Bangs making himself agreeable to that handsome Miss Maud Evelyn Mndge. They seemed to enjoy themselves mightily; that Miss Evelyn was highly tickled about something. I wish I knew what it was! It was probably at the expense of her aunt; thinking how the poor thing was going to be taken in by my making love to her. I've no doubt Bangs confided to her that he had put me on the right track.
It's hard work, this hunting up a rich wife to take care of a fellah. Sometimes I think I 'll give it up, and go to clerking, or something. If I could get a situation, now, in some of these big retail-stores, where the ladies would have plenty of chance to admire my hair, and where my clothes wouldn't be thrown away, I might possibly contrive to exist. I should charge my employer five hundred a year extra for my style-aw. Think they ought to be willing to pay me for just standing around and showing myself. It 'll be time enough to think of such a step if this affair should fall through.
Live in good style, them Mndges do. Wonder how they'd like a look at my room! Faint away to come into such a vulgar street, I suppose. I don't like it any better than they would; but at present I don't know of any way to better the mattah unless proposing to that antique lady will do it. I shudder to think of it; but how else is a fellah to get along? Only four hundred dollars; and it 'll take that to keep up appearances, buy my intended a present, and pay the minister. Sorry I spoiled my coat oh New Year's—puts me to extra expense. If I hadn't have had sense enough to lay one of my carte de visile on my hat, so that Bangs would know me, when he came along, I don't believe the policeman would ever have got me home. Hope the Mndges hav'n't heard of that scrape; but of course Bangs wouldn't tell 'em; he :s anxious to help along the match.
What a nice fashion this of carte de finite is, I'd like to have a large circle of lady acquaintance, just for the pleasure of sending up my
"M IBS 8LIMMHN si"
card—gives a favorable impression in advance- aw! I always imagine the dear creatures admiring my picture while I'm sitting in the parlor waiting for them. Now, for plain fellahs like Bliss and Bangs, it's unfortunate; but for me, there couldn't be anything bettah.
Meant to have made a surreptitious call on the ancient to-day: for I heard Miss Evelyn saying she was going to the matinee, and Bangs promised to meet her there; but it's so rainy I hardly think they 'll go, and the dampness will take the curl out of my hair. I 'vo a great mind to do the business up by letter; it will spare her blushes, and it must be distressing to see her try to blush with that complexion of hers; and I could never bring myself to attempt to press her hand with those black-lace mittens on; besides, I might wait a month for an opportunity to speak, unless her niece went out of the room on purpose to give me a chance. Somebody else will be before me if it once gets a going that she's an heiress in disguise. I know at least six young fellahs who'd throw themselves at her feet without delay; they'd lead her to the altar if she was eighty instead of forty. Ugh! the last timo we went there, she had on a green merino dress and a blue sarque, and something in her hair that looked like a steel-bead purse.
It's so long since I've written a lettah that I hardly know how to proceed, I wish I 'd saved a copy of a few of those I've got upon similar occasions. I shouldn't be put to all the trouble of composing a new one now. I must send out one of the girls to get me some fashionable papah and envelops; in the mean time, I can be getting up the rough draft on this piece of wrapping-paper that came around that bottle of " Hair-Tonique"—splendid, that Tonique is, best I ever used.
Now, then, to begin: I wonder whether she likes the style, respectful, or the style impair. sioned-aw; probably the latter. These elderly ladies usually do, I've found—
"Miss Mndge," (formal).
"My dear Miss Mndge," (respectful).
"Adorablo Lucinda," (impassioned).
Too much so, I'm afraid; she's rather sharp, that woman is, and she may see through it; this is bettah.