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12. I've studied Glanville and James the wise,
And wizard black-letter tomes, which treat
Which a Christian man is presumed to meet;
13. Ah! commend me to Mary Magdalen
With her seven-fold plagues — to the Wandering Jew,
The furies his midnight curtains drew :
A HOME STORY.
1. The brilliant examples of those eminent men and women whose biographies are trumpeted through the world are not adapted to the every-day wants of a medium condition. What have the wives of our American citizens, or those of our village artisans and country farmers, in common with Madame de Stael, Madam de Genlis, the mistresses of Louis Fourteenth, or even the “eminent women of England ?”
2. Our home productions are better suited for our home market; and we believe there are women in our towns and villages, whose domestic, unconscious virtues, not elicited or set off by uncommon circumstances, would be far more edifying to the million than the blazonry of great real names, or the possible perfection of imaginary characters. But the true story must be told, and this remains to be done by some master hand. Our humbler task is to record a few traits in the characters of one of our village maidens, who has fallen within the falling year.
3. Harriet Gale was known among her own set as a quiet, kind-hearted, industrious girl, who performed her duties well, and said nothing about them. They were to her the allotted work of life; and she did them cheerfully, without any apparent thought of difficulty in the task, or merit in its accomplishment. Two or three years since, she was invited to live with a sister who was well established somewhere in the vast West.
4. She found a happy and exciting home there, and was delighted with her improved condition. It must be confessed that our emigrants from New England, in their earnest struggle for the good things of this life, sometimes forget the commandment, "Honor thy father and thy mother.” Their thoughts are on their fair, fresh fields, standing thick with corn; and they do not, like Joseph, remember the old man whom they may have left straitened at home.
5. Our friend Harriet did remember him. Her father is aged; and hearing that her presence and filial ministry were becoming important to him, she did not hesitate for a moment to sacrifice her agreeable position to his comfort, and, “ true to the kindred points of heaven and home,” she returned to him.
6. There is too little sympathy between youth and age; it is difficult to make activity and repose harmonize. The stream of love and care, sacrifice and benefaction, naturally runs down from parent to child, and to this order of nature the parent's love is generally adequate. But when, as sometimes towards the close of life, the stream is to be turned, and the child is to minister to the parent, the exigence requires an extraordinary virtue in both. The child 's mid-day must be somewhat dimmed, if not obscured the parent's chill twilight must be warmed and brightened - each must conform to the other.
7. “I thought it a privilege,” said Harriet to me, when first I made her acquaintance, a few weeks before her death, " to come home and do what I could for father."
8. "Father is always kind and always cheerful -he. never lets anything worry him, come what will, and he has had enough to make other men disappointed and fractious – poor old man! I am afraid he will miss me! I said to him this morning, Father, I don't know who will keep your accounts and mend your pens when I am gone.' 9. He did not answer me.
He could not. But he will give up; I know he will — he is used to it!” Here was no exaggeration of her importance - no selfish or egotistic fear that she should be forgotten.
10. Harriet had a step-mother, a name that is, for the most part, a signal for the revolt of the affections a relation that enlists all the mean jealousies, selfishnesses, and asperities that beset domestic life, and, in truth, is so involved in difficulties, that few seem to think it worth while to struggle against its tendencies. 11. "
• It seems,” said Miss Gale to me, with a sweet smile, “ when mother (her step-mother) comes into that door, as if an angel entered my room.
She has made this room seem to me like the gates of Paradise. I have many kind hands to smooth my pillow, but there is no hand like mother's !”
12. I would abstain from published praise of living worth, but I cannot forbear saying that there must have been an equal fidelity in both parties, to make this happiness. God's servants are the only true alchymists -- they alone turn the baser metals to gold.
13. There are few of the relations of life that produce the happiness of which He who "set the solitary in families” has made them capable. How many barren or half-tilled fields are there in domestic life! We cease to wonder at the abuses of the conjugal relation—that relation most beset with difficulties, and most liable to abuse - when we see parents and children, brothers and sisters, fail to reap the golden harvest of which their Heavenly Father has sown their fields at broadcast.
14. I saw Harriet Gale when she was fast sinking away
with consumption. She was so cheerful, and manifested so hearty an interest in all the village concerns, that I took it for granted that, like many persons in that disease, she was deluded as to its progress; and I was taken by surprise, when our kind village dress-maker having sent her word she was prevented coming to watch with her by some fancy dresses which must be finished for a fancy ball to be given on the next evening, (the 4th of July, she said, “Well, I don't envy them; death looks pleasanter to me than life ever did. I have enjoyed living, too !” she added, with a sweet smile.
15. How few there are, who, on such an occasion, would not have indulged in some lamentation over the frivolity of the world, in which, alas! for poor human nature, a drop of pharasaical self-complacency would have mingled. Harriet Gale's pure spirit was like those healthy atmospheres that disinfect whatever they embrace.
16. It was on the same eve of our festival of independence, that, raising her feeble head, and looking through the window at the stars, she said, “It is a clear night, and I think we shall have a pleasant day to-morrow. I hope so, for it is a pity to have so many people disappointed."
17. Such cheerful and gentle sympathies are rarely felt in the midst of suffering, (Miss Gale's was extreme at this time,) and they are therefore more impressive than strong and bold expressions of religious triumph.
18. She used no threadbare phrases to express her feelings, nor seemed for a moment to think there was anything unusual about them. Her face and tones were uniformly quiet and cheerful. She said to me, with her habitual and never to be forgotten smile, "My happiest hours have been in this room!"
19. “But you have suffered here extremely," I replied. “ Yes,” she answered, “but God is good, and if it were better that I should be removed with less suffering, I certainly should be."
20. Harriet Gale had been, from her early youth, a member of the Methodist church, and her familiar friends looked upon her death but as the fitting conclusion to the Christian fidelity of her life. Those strangers who were admitted to the privilege of seeing her in the last extremity, for the first time, saw how it was that the sting of death was taken away, and heard, mingling with her sweet tones, “It is I — be not afraid.”
SPUNK AND PERIL.
1. There is a story, and which I believe is fact, of two boys going to a jackdaw's nest, from a hole under the belfry window, in the tower of All-Saint's Church, Derby.
2. As it was impossible to reach it standing, and equally impossible to reach that height from without, they resolved to put a plank through the window; and while the heavier boy secured its balance by sitting on the end within, the lighter boy.was to fix himself on the opposite end, and from that perilous situation to reach the object of their desire.
3. So far, the scheme answered. The little fellow took the nest, and finding in it five fledged young birds, announced the news to his companion. Five, are there?” replied he: " then I'll have three."
4. “Nay,” exclaimed the other, indignantly, “I run all the danger, and I'll have three.” “You shall not,” still maintained the boy inside “you shall not.
Promise me three, or I'll drop you!” “Drop me, if you please," replied the little hero, “but I'll promise you no more than two;” – upon which his companion slipped off the plank.
5. Up tilted the end, and down went the boy, upwards of a hundred feet, to the ground. The little fellow, at the moment of his fall, was holding his prize by their legs, three in