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the gables of Chidlingstone, and standing awhile in the old church porch, he is now in front of the ancient castle.
Hever Castle lies in a hollow, on the river Eden, and was embattled by William de Hevre, in the reign of Edward III. It consists of a central keep, with two square
towers on either side, and a quadrangular house with a court paved with red bricks, very fantastically arranged. The keep is pierced with a gate of enormous strength, and three portcullises, with doors studded with iron, within which horsemen took their stand day and night, adding to the popular belief that the place was impregnable, in case of a siege or sudden assault. One of these doors still remains banging by its ancient hinges, and retains its original bolts and latch.
The present entrance is through the old dininghall, now used as a farmer's kitchen. In this ball are tables, sofas, &e., said to have formed part of the original furniture of the Boleyn family, former lords of the soil. The tables are placed crosswise, except the one for the guests, who sat above the salt, which in olden times always divided the humble from the great. The hall is decorated with portraits, but the visitor must not be led to believe that that of Edward VI. is Anne Boleyn's son, or that Garrick as Richard III. is a veritable Cromwell.
In one room, where old furniture abounds, we are told Sir Thomas Boleyn shut up his daughter when the king came to visit, and the trap is shown through which her daily food was passed. Be this as it may, the old place abounds in trap-doors, towers, and traditions, which latter cannot be disproved. Certain it is, that the manor did belong to the Geoffrey Boleyn who was, in 1458, Lord Mayor of London; but Bleckling Hall, in Norfolk, contends for the honour of having been the birthplace of the fair Anne, and with more show of reason than Hever, it is thought. However, there is no doubt that Anne was educated here, and from this place she was led by King Henry to that court where she met her tragical and undeserved end. This much we know, though the places of birth, marriage, and burial, have never been discovered. On the death of Sir Thomas, the castle became crown property; and when this ruthless monarch determined to divorce himself from his fourth wife, Anne of Clevés, it was Hever he selected as her abode. Accordingly we find her, in 1554, writing to her step-daughter, Queen Mary:
"From my poor house at Hever, the 4th of August, your highness to command, Anne, the daughter of Cleves."
In sweet and calm retirement (a happy change !) she passed her pleasant days, occupied in the small cares and rich delights of country life. Happy would it have been for Anne Boleyn, if, instead of the restless nature that led her to seek the blaze of courts, and prove how true it is that
Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown," she had rested in “sweet content,” and never quitted this peaceful home. From the castle let the visitor wend his
to the church, and enter under the belfry, which is the most ancient part; standing there, he will be able to carry on his reflections by aid of monuments and brasses around him. On the floor of the church is a full
THE STOLEN TREASURE.
I ENTERED Madame's room with no little trepidation, and saw my poor little schoolfellow sitting on a stool. She did not exhibit any violent grief, but there was a painfully forlorn expression about her always wistful face; and though she did not cry, she would neither eat nor take any notice of
When the school-bell rang, Madame sent me down; for I was of no use. The teachers inquired after the poor child, and one of them said, that though she was very sorry for the poor ayah, she thought her removal was by no means to be regretted on the child's account; because as long as that foreign woman was about her, she would never have thoroughly settled at school, nor attached herself to those who had the care of her. I could not tell how this might be, but I thought that, even to a child, it must be a terrible thing to lose the only person whom she deeply loved, and with whom she was thoroughly at home; and I hoped she would now begin to attach herself to us, and soon get over the loss of her ayah.
But from day to day, when I saw her, she was still pining and fretting, sometimes moping on her little stool, sometimes crying in Massey's arms, and constantly becoming thinner and paler, losing her appetite, and refusing to do as she was bid.
At first Madame hoped she would soon forget her grief, but when three or four weeks had passed away, and still the tiny face grew more thin, and the little sorrowful voice was heard wailing in the night, she became seriously unhappy about the child ; for she was too young to be reasoned with, too ill to be punished, and too remote to be sent away to her parents. Sometimes they would take her out for a drive, or think to amuse her by bringing her down into the garden, but after taking a few steps she would put her little wasted hand to her side, and say in a piteous voice, “It hurts here; it always hurts here,” begging to be taken in again. Her medical attendant said it was extremely bad for her to fret and cry; he used to assure Madame that he could do nothing for her unless she was kept calm and cheerful; an easy thing to say, but difficult to accomplish, for every dose of medicine cost a contention and a passion of tears that almost exhausted her feeble frame; and though she was tempted with many dainties, she could hardly eat enough to sustain life.
Madame was accustomed to be implicitly obeyed, and scarcely knew how to deal with this poor infant, who set her authority utterly at nought, and was not to be flattered or caressed into submission. She had not been well brought up, and though when in health she had yielded to an influence that kept the boldest spirits in order, she had now ceased to care for praise or blame, and all her original wilfulness had come back again.
Madame was evidently quite wretched, and was losing confidence in herself altogether : first she caused each teacher in turn to try her powers with the child, then she called in the elder girls and encouraged them to exert themselves to make the little sufferer take her medicine; but all was of no avail, low fever came on, and life seemed actually to depend on a docility that it was quite hopeless to expect from her.
Yet the wilfulness of a little child does not alienate affece tion. There was still something sweet in the baby resentment that blamed everybody, is all the cruel ladies," for taking away her mamma and her nurse. The little voice, in all its sorrow, was still silvery and touching, and the wistful features were still pretty, though marred by tears and illness.
It was about this time that Miss Black came among us, but as I have said before, her coming attracted little attention ; our thoughts, when not occupied with the child, were all given to Caroline. Miss Black always inquired with great interest about the poor little creature, but Madame never thought of asking her to come and see her, because she was a stranger.
One night, when we were all quite unhappy about our little schoolfellow, I was called in while we were undressing for bed, to see if I could make her take her food by talking Hindoostanee to her; I did not succeed, but Madame did not desire me to withdraw, and I sat by the bed thinking how mournful all this was, and wishing there was something more useful for me to do than snuffing the candle which stood on a small table beside her.
Poor little child, I remember her wailing voice as she sat half-upright in her bed, peevishly refusing either to take her supper or to lie down and sleep, when the door into our bed-room was softly pushed open, and Miss Black came in, with a long white dressing-gown on.
I thought she came to see what she could do to help us, but apparently this was not the case : Miss Black did not