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glowworms enough to form a constellation on not only one of the most contagious feelings the grass; and would spend half a July day in the world, but one of the most invincible:) in chasing for her some glorious insect, dragon- whether Farmer Cobham were inoculated fly, or bee-bird, or golden beetle, or gorgeous with old Daniel's hatred of Jesse, or had tabutterfly. He not only bestowed upon her ken that very virulent disease the natural way, sloes, and dew-berries, and hazel-nuts “ brown nothing could exceed the bitterness of the as the squirrel whose teeth crack 'em,” but aversion which gradually grew up in his caught for her the squirrel itself. He brought mind towards the poor lad. 'That Venus liked her a whole litter of dormice, and tamed for him, and Phæbe liked him, added strength to her diversion a young magpie, whose first the feeling. He would have been ashamed to effort at flattery was "Pretty Phæbe!" confess himself jealous of their good-will
Bat his greatest present of all, most prized towards such an object, and yet most certainly both by donor and receiver, (albeit her tender jealous he was. He did not drive him from heart smote her as she accepted it, and she his shelter in the Moors, because he had made her faithful slave promise most faithfully unwarily passed his word-bis word, which, to take nests no more,) was a grand string of with yeomanly pride, John Cobham held sacred birds' eggs, long enough to hang in festoons as his bond- to let him remain until he commitround, and round, and round her play-room, ted some offence; but, for this offence, both he and sufficiently various aud beautiful to gratify and Daniel watched and waited with an immore fastidious eyes than those of our little patience and irritability which contrasted heroine.
strangely with the honourable self-restraint that To collect this rope of variously-tinted withheld him from direct abuse of his power. beads-a natural rosary-he had sought the For a long time, Daniel and his master waited mossy and hair-lined nest of the hedge-sparrow in vain. Jesse, whom they had entertained for her turquoise-like rounds; had scrambled some vague hope of chasing away by angry up the chimney-corner to bear away those looks and scornful words, had been so much pearls of the land, the small white eggs of the accustomed all his life long to taunts and conhouse-martin ; had found deposited in an old tumely, that it was a great while before he bemagpie's nest the ovals of the sparrow-hawk, came conscious of their unkindness; and when red and smooth as the finest coral; had dived at last it forced itself upon his attention, he into the ground-mansion of the skylark for her shrank away crouching and cowering, and lilac-tinted shells, and groped amongst the buried himself in the closest recesses of the bushes for the rosy-tinted ones of the wood- coppice, until the footstep of the reviler had lark; climbed the tallest trees for the sea-green passed by. One look at his sweet little friend eggs of the rooks; had pilfered the spotted repaid him twenty-fold; and although farmer treasures from the snug dwelling which the Cobham had really worked himself into bewren constructed in the eaves; and, worst of lieving that there was danger in allowing the all-I hardly like to write it, I hardly care to beautiful child to approach poor Jesse, and had think, that Jesse could have committed such therefore on different pretexts forbidden her an outrage,-saddest and worst of all, in the visits to the Moors, she did yet happen in her very midst of that varied garland might be various walks to encounter that devoted adheseen the brown and dusky egg, as little showy rent oftener than would be believed possible as its quaker-like plumage, the dark brown by any one who has not been led to remark, egg, from which should have issued that “an- how often, in this best of all possible worlds, gel of the air,” the songstress, famous in every an earnest and innocent wish does as it were land, the unparagoned nightingale. It is but fulfil itself. just toward Jesse to add, that he took the nest At last, however, a wish of a very different in a mistake, and was quite unconscious of the nature came to pass. Daniel Thorpe detected mischief he had done until it was too late to Jesse in an actual offence against that fertile repair it.
source of crime and misery, the game laws. "Of course these gifts were not only gracious Thus the affair happened. ly accepted, but duly returned ; cakes, apples, During many weeks, the neighbourhood had tarts, and gingerbread, halfpence in profusion, been infested by a gang of bold, sturdy pilferand now and then a new shilling, or a bright ers, roving vagabonds, begging by day, 'stealsixpence—all, in short, that poor Phæbe had ing and poaching by night-who had comunitto bestow, she showered upon her uncouth / ted such extensive devastations amongst the favourite, and she would fain have amended his poultry and linen of the village, as well as the condition by more substantial benefits; but au- game in the preserves, that the whole populathoritative as she was with her grandfather in tion was upon the alert; and the lonely copother instances, in this alone her usual powers pices of the Moors rendering that spot one peof persuasion utterly failed. Whether infect- culiarly likely to attract the attention of the ed by old Daniel's dislike, (and be it observed, gang, old Daniel, reinforced by a stout lad as an unfounded prejudice, that sort of prejudice a sort of extra-guard, kept a most jealous for which he who entertains it does not pre- watch over his territory. tend to account even to himself, is unluckily Perambulating the outside of the wood one
evening at sunset, he heard the cry of a hare; up the hare for me, to please my foolish and climbing over the fence, had the unexpect fancy! Oh, grandpapa! Poor Jesse!" and ed pleasure of seeing our friend Jesse in the Phæhe cried as if her heart would break. act of taking a leveret still alive from the wire. “God bless you, Miss Phæbe!” said Jesse. “So, so, inaster Jesse! thou be'st turned " All this is nonsense!" exclaimed the unpoacher, be'st thou ?" ejaculated Daniel, with relenting fariner. “Take the prisoner to the a malicious chuckle, seizing, at one fell grip. Chequers, Daniel, and get another man to the hare and the lad.
keep you company in sitting up with him. “Miss Phæbe !" ejaculated Jesse, submit- Have as much strong beer as you like, and ting himself to the old man's grasp, but strug- be sure to bring hin and the constable here gling to retain the leveret ; “Miss Phabe!" by nine o'clock to-morrow morning."
“ Miss Phæbe, indeed !” responded Daniel ; “Oh, grandfather, you 'll be sorry for this! "she saved thee once, my lad, but thy time's I did not think you had been so hard-hearied!" What do'st thee want of the sobbed Phæbe.
You'll be very sorry for leveret, mon? Do'st not thee know that 'tis this." part of the evidence against thee? Well, he “Yes, very sorry, that he will. God bless may carry that whilst I carry the snare. Mas- you, Miss Phebe," said Jesse. ter'll be main glad to see un. He always " What! does he threaten ? Take him off, suspected the chap. And, for the matter of Daniel. And you, Phebe, go to bed and thai, so did I. Miss Phæbe, indeed! Come compose yourself. Heaven bless you, my along, my mon, I warrant thou hast seen thy darling !" said the fond grandfather, smootlilaat o' Miss Phehe. Come on wi' thee." ing her hair, as, the tears still chasing each
And Jesse was hurried as fast as Daniel's other down her cheeks, she stood leaning, legs would carry him to the presence of far- against his knee. • Go to bed and to sleep, mer Cobham.
my precious! and you, Sally, bring me my On entering the house (not the old deserted pipe :” and wondering why the fulfilment of homestead of the Moors, but the comfortable a strong desire should not make him happier, dwelling-house at Aberleigh) Jesse delivered the honest farmer endeavoured to smoke away the panting, trembling leveret to the first per- his cares. son he met, with no other explanation than In the meanwhile, old Daniel conducted might be comprised in the words, “ Miss Jesse to the Chequers, and having lodged him Phæbe !" and followed Daniel quietly to the safely in an upper room, sought out "an hall.
ancient, trusty, drouthy crony," with whom • Poaching, was he? Taking the hare from he sate down to carouse in the same apart., the wire ? And you saw him?
ment with his prisoner. It was a dark, cold, swear to the faci?" quoth John Cobham, windy, October night, and the two warders rubbing his hands with unusual glee." Well, sate cosily by the fire, enjoying their gossip. now we shall be fairly rid of the fellow! and their ale, while the unlucky delinquent Take him to the Chequers for the night, placed himself pensively by the window. Daniel, and get another man beside yourself About midnight the two old men were startled to sit up with him. It's too late to disturb by his flinging open the casement. Sir Robert this evening. To-morrow morning “ Miss Phobe! look! Jook!" we'll take him to the Hall. See that the “What? where ?" inquired Daniel. constable's ready by nine o'clock. No doubt " Miss Phæbe!" repeated the prisoner: but Sir Robert will commit him to the county and, looking in the direction in which Jesse bridewell.
pointed, they saw the flames bursting from “Oh, grandpapa !” exclaimed Phæbe, dart- Farmer Cobham's house. ing into the room with the leveret in her arms, In a very few seconds they had alarmed and catching the last words. “Oh, grand- the family, and spring forth in the direction papa ! poor Jesse!"
of the fire; the prisoner accompanying thein, Miss Phæbe!" ejaculated the culprit. unnoticed in the confusion. “Oh, grandfather, it's all my fault," con “Luckily, master 's always insored to the tinued Phæbe; " and if anybody is to go to value of all he's worth, stock and goods," prison, you ought to send me. I had been quoth the prudent Daniel.
1 reading about Cowper's hares, and I wanted “ Miss Phæbe!” exclaimed Jesse: and even a young hare to tame: I took a fancy for one, as he spoke he burst in the door, darted up and told poor Jesse! And to think of his the staircase, and returned with the trembling going to prison for that!"
child in his arms, followed by aunt Dorothy * And did you tell him to set a wire for the and the frightened servants. hare, Phæbe ?"
“Grandpapa! dear grandpapa! where is "A wire! what does that mean?" said the grand papa? 'Will no one save my dear grandbewildered child.
" But I dare say,” added papa ?" cried Phæbe. she, upon Farmer Cobham's explaining the And, placing the little girl at the side of nature of the snare, “I dare say that the her aunt, Jesse again mounted the blazing poachers set the wire, and that he only took staircase. For a few moments all gave him
up for lost. But he returned, tottering under at whatever labour was assigned to him, rethe weight of a man scarcely yet aroused ceiving wages like the other farm-servants; from heavy sleep, and half suffocated by the and finally it was discovered that one of the smoke and flames.
first uses he made of these wages was to * Miss Phabe! he's safe, Miss Phæbe! - purchase spelling-books and copy-books, and Down, Venus, down-He's safe, Miss Phe-enter himself at an evening school, where the be! And now, I sha'n't mind going to prison, opening difficulties being surmounted, his pro'cause when I come back you 'll be living at gress astonished everybody. the Moors. Sha'n't you, Miss Phæbe? And His chief fancy was for gardening. The I shall see you every day!”.
love, and, to a certain point, the knowledge of One part of this speech turned out true, flowers which he had always evinced increased and another part false—no uncommon fate, by upon him every day ;-and happening to acthe way, of prophetic speeches, even when company Phæbe on one of her visits to the vitered by wiser persons
than poor Jesse,
ladies at the Hall, who were much atPhæbe did come to live at the Moors, and he iached to the lovely little girl, he saw Lady did not go to prison.
Mordaunt's French garden, and imitated in the On the contrary, so violent was the revul- next year for his young mistress in wild flowsion of feeling in the honest hearts of the ers, after such a fashion as to excite the wongood yeoman, John Cobham, and his faithful der and admiration of all beholders. servant, old Daniel, and so deep the remorse
From that moment Jesse's destiny was dewhich they both felt for their injustice and cided. Sir Robert's gardener, a clever Scotchunkindness towards the friendless lad, that
man, there was considerable danger of their falling employ him at the Hall; but the Moors had
took great notice of him and offered to into the opposite extreme, and ruining him by to poor Jesse a fascination which he could not sudden and excessive indulgence. Jesse,
surmount. He felt that it would be easier to however, was not of a temperament to be easily spoilt. He had been so long an out- live in the neighbourhood and not there. Ac
tear himself from the place alıngether, than to cast from human society, that he had becoine cordingly he lingered on for a year or two, and as wild and shy as his old companions of the then took a grateful leave of his benefactors, fields and the coppice, the beasts of the earth and set forth to London with the avowed inand the birds of the air. The hare which he tention of seeking employment in a great nurhad himself given to Phæbe was easier to sery-ground, to the proprietor of which he was tame ihan Jesse Cliffe.
furnished with letters, not merely froin his Gradually, very gradually, under the gentle friend the gardener, but from Sir Robert himinfluence of the gentle child, this great feat
self. was accomplished, almost as effectually, al
N. B. It is recorded that on the night of though by no means so suddenly, as in the well-known case of Cymon and Iphigenia, Jesse's departure, Venus refused her supper the most noted precedent upon record of the and Phæbe cried herself to sleep.
Time wore on. process of reaching the head through the
Occasional tidings had heart. Venus, and a beautiful Welsh pony reached the Moors of the prosperous fortones called Taffy, which her grandfather had re- of the adventurer. He had been immediately cently purchased for her riding, had their engaged by the great nurseryman to whom he share in the good deed; these two favourites was recommended, and so highly approved, being placed by Phæbe's desire under Jesse's that in little more than two years he became sole charge and management; a
foreinan of the flower department; another which not only brought him necessarily into two years saw him chief manager of the garsomething like intercourse with the other lads den; and now, at the end of a somewhat longabout the yard, but ended in his conceiving so er perind, there was a rumour of his having strong an attachment to the animals of whom been taken into the concern as acting partner; he had the care, that before the winter set in a rumour which received full confirination in be had deserted his old Jair in the wood, and a letter from himself, accompanying a magniactually passed his nights in a vacant stall of ficent present of shrubs, plants, and Powerthe small stable appropriated to their use.
roots, amongst which were two Dahlias, tickFrom the moment that John Cobham de- eted the Moors' and 'the Phæbe,' and antected such an approach to the habits of civil nouncing his intention of visiting his best and ized life as sleeping under a roof, he looket earliest friends in the course of the ensuing upon the wild son of the Moors, as virtually summer. reclaimed, and so it proved. Every day he
Still time wore on. It was full six months became more and more like his fellow-men. after this intimation, that on a bright morning He abandoned his primitive oven, and bought in October, John Cobham, with two or three his bread at the baker's. He accepted thank- visiters from Belford, and his granddaughter fully the decent chothing necessary to his at- Phæbe, now a lovely young woman, were tending Miss Phæbe in her rides round the coursing on the Moors. The towns-people country. He worked regularly and steadily I had boasted of their greyhounds, and the old
sportsman was in high spirits from having tered that how the bitch could find him out, beaten them out of the field.
is beyond my comprehension. It's remarka“ If that's your best dog," quoth John, ble,” continued he in an under tone, walking "why, I'll be bound that our Snowball would away with Jesse from the Belford party, “that beat him with one of his legs tied up. Talk we five (counting Venus and old Daniel) of running such a cur as that against Snow should meet just on this very spot-isn't it? ball! Why there's Phæbe's pet, Venus, It looks as if we were to come together. And Snowball's great-grandam, who was twelve if you have a fancy for Phæbe, as your friend years old last May, and has not seen a hare Sir Robert says you have, and if Phæbe rethese three seasons, shall give him the go-by tains her old fancy for you, (as I partly believe in the first hundred yards. Go and fetch Ve may be the case,) why my consent sha'n't be nus, Daniel! It will do her heart good to see wanting. Don't keep squeezing my hand, a hare again,” added he, answering the looks man, but go and find out what she thinks of rather than the words of his granddaughter, the matter.”
for she had not spoken, “and I'll be bound Five minutes after this conversation, Jesse to say she'll beat him out of sight. He and Phæbe were walking together towards won't come in for a turn."
the house; what he said we have po business Upon Venus's arrival, great admiration was to inquire, but if blushes may be trusted, of expressed at her symmetry and beauty; the a certainty the little damsel did not answer greyness incident to her age having fallen “ No." upon her, as it sometimes does upon black greyhounds, in the form of small white spots, so that she appeared as if originally what the coursers call " ticked.” She was in excellent condition, and appeared to understand the design of the meeting as well as any one present,
MISS PHILLY FIRKIN, THE and to be delighted to find herself once more
CHINA WOMAN. in the field of fame. Her competitor, a yellow dog called Smoaker, was lei loose, and the In Belford Regis, as in many of those pro. whole party awaited in eager expectation of a vincial capitals of the south of England, hare.
whose growth and importance have kept pace “Soho!" cried John Cobham, and off the with the increased affluence and population of dogs sprang; Venus taking the turn, as he the neighbourhood, the principal shops will be had foretold, running as true as in the first found clustered in the close, inconvenient season, doing all the work, and killing the streets of the antique portion of the good town; hare, after a course which, for any part whilst the more showy and commodious Smoaker took in it, might as well have been modern buildings are quite unable to compete single-handed.
in point of custom with the old crowded “Look how she's bringing the hare to my localities, which seem even to derive an adgrandfather!” exclaimed Phæbe; “she al- vantage from the appearance of business and ways brings her game !"
bustle occasioned by the sharp turnings, the And with the hare in her mouth, carefully steep declivities, the narrow causeways, the poised by the middle of the back, she was jutting-out windows, and the various obstrucslowly advancing towards her master, when tions incident to the picturesque but irreglar a stranger, well dressed and well mounted, street-architecture of our ancestors. who had joined the party unperceived during Accordingly, Oriel Street, in Belford, -3 the course, suddenly called " Venus!” narrow lane, cribbed and confined on the one
And Venus started, pricked up her ears as side by an old monastic establishment, now if to listen, and stood stock still.
turned into almshouses, called the Oriel, “Venus !" again cried the horseman. which divided the street from that branch of
And Venus, apparently recognizing the the river called the Holy Brook, and on the voice, walked towards the stranger, (who by other bounded by the market-place, whilst one this time had dismounted,) laid the hare down end abutted on the yard of a great inn, and at his feet, and then sprang up herself to meet turned so sharply up a steep acclivity that and return his caresses,
accidents happened there every day, and the " Jesse! It must be Jesse Cliffe!” said other terminus wound with an equally awkward Phrebe, in a tone which wavered between ex- curvature round the churchyard of St. Stephen's clamation and interrogatory..
-this most strait and incommodious avenue of “It can be none other,” responded her shops was the wealthiest quarter of the grandfather. “I'd trust Venus beyond all Borough. It was a provincial combination of the world in the matter of recognising an old Regent Street and Cheapside. The houses friend, and we all know that except her old let for double their value; and, as a necessary master and her young mistress, she never consequence, goods sold there at pretty nearly cared a straw for anybody but Jesse. It must the same rate; horse-people and foot-people be Jesse Cliffe, though to be sure he's so al- jostled upon the pavement; coaches and
phaetons ran against each other in the road. apron and sleeves, whom, with equal ingenuity, Nobody dreamt of visiting Belford without she called by several appellations of Jack, wanting something or other in Oriel Street; , Jonathan, and Mr. Lamb-mister!—but who and although noise, and crowd, and bustle, be was really such a cock-o'-my-thumb as might very far from usual attributes of the good town, have been served up in a tureen, or haked in a yet in driving through this favoured region on pie-dish, without in the slightest degree abridga fine day, between the hours of three and ing his personal dimensions. I have known five, we stood a fair chance of encountering as him quite hidden behind a china jar, and as many difficulties and obstructions from car- completely buried, whilst standing on tip-toe, riages, and as much din and disorder on the in a crate, as the dessert-service which he was causeway, as we shall often have the pleasure' engaged in unpacking. Whether this pair of of meeting with out of London.
originals was transferred from a show at a fair One of the most popular and frequented to Miss Philly's warehouse, or whether she shops in the street, and out of all manner of had picked them up accidentally, first one and comparison the prettiest to look at, was the then the other, guided by a fine sense of conwell-furnished glass and china warehouse of gruity, as she might match a wine-glass or a Philadelphia Firkin, spinster. Few things tea-cup, must be left to conjecture. Certain are indeed more agreeable to the eye than the they answered her purpose, as well as if they inixture of glittering cut glass, with rich and had been the size of Gog and Magog; were delicate china, so beautiful in shape, colour, attentive to the customers, faithful to their and material, which adorn a nicely-assorted employer, and crept about amongst the china show-room of that description. The manu as softly as two mice. factures of Sèvres, of Dresden, of Derby, and The world went well with Miss Philly of Worcester, are really works of art, and Firkin in the shop and ont. She won favour very beautiful ones too; and even the less in the sight of her betters by a certain prim, choice specimens have about them a clearness, demure, simpering civility, and a power of a glossiness, and a nicety, exceedingly pleasant multiplying herself as well as her little offito look upon; so that a china-shop is in some cials, like Yates or Matthews in a monopolosense a shop of temptation : and that it is also logue, and attending to half-a-dozen persons at a shop of necessity, every housekeeper who once; whilst she was no less popular amongst knows to her cost the infinite number of her equals in virtue of her excellent gift in plates, dishes, cups, and glasses, which con- gossiping. Nobody better loved a gentle tale trive to get broken in the course of the year, of scandal, to sweeten a quiet cup of tea. (chiefly by that grand demolisher of crockery Nobody evinced a finer talent for picking up ware called Nobody,) will not fail to bear tes- whatever news happened to be stirring, or timony.
greater liberality in its diffusion. She was Miss Philadelphia's was therefore a well-ac- the intelligencer of the place --a walking customed shop, and she herself was in appear- chronicle. ance most fit to be its inhabitant, being a trim, In a word, Miss Philly Firkin was certainly prim little woman, neither old nor young, a prosperous, and, as times go, a tolerably whose dress hung about her in stiff regular happy woman. To be sure, her closest infolds, very like the drapery of a china shep- timates, those very dear friends, who, as our herdess on a mantel-piece, and whose pink and confidence gives them the opportunity, are so white complexion, skin, eyebrows, eyes, and obliging as to watch our weakness and report hair, all tinted as it seemed with one dash of our foibles,-certain of these bosom companruddy colour, had the same professional hue. ions had been heard to hint, that Miss Philly, Change her spruce cap for a wide-brimmed who had refused two or three good matches in hat, and the damask napkin which she flourish- her bloom, repented her of this cruelty, and ed in wiping her wares, for a china crook, and would probably be found less obdurate now the figure in question might have passed for a that suitors had ceased to offer. This, if true, miniature of the mistress. In one respect was one hidden grievance, a flitting shadow they differed. The china shepherdess was a upon a sunny destiny; whilst another might silent personage.
Miss Philadelphia was be found in a circumstance of which she was not; on the contrary, she was reckoned to make, so far from making a secret, that it was one of after her own mincing fashion, as good a use her most frequent topics of discourse. of hier tongue as any woman, gentle or simple, The calamity in question took the not unin the whole town of Belford.
frequent form of a next-door neighbour. On She was assisted in her avocations by a her right dwelt an eminent tinman with his little shopwoman, not much taller than a china pretty daughter, two of the most respectable, mandarin, remarkable for the height of her kindest, and best-conducted persons in the comb, and the length of her ear-rings, whom town; but on her left was an open bricked she addressed sometimes as Miss Wolfe, archway, just wide enough to admit a cart, sometimes as Marianne, and sometimes as surmounted by a diw and dingy representation Polly, thus multiplying the young lady's in- of some horned animal, with - The Old Red dividuality by three; and a liitle shopman in Cow” written in white capitals above, and