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3. A powerful corps had been summoned from across the country, and if it came up in season all would yet be well. The great conqueror, confident in its arrival, formed his reserve' into an attacking column, and ordered them to charge the enemy. The whole world knows the result. Grouchy* failed to appear; the imperial guard was beaten back; Waterloo was lost. Napoleon died a prisoner at St. Helena because one of his marshals was behind time.
4. A leading firm in commercial circles had long struggled against bankruptcy. As it had enormous assets * in California, it expected remittances by a certain day, and if the sums promised arrived, its credit, its honor, and its future prosperity would be preserved. But week after week elapsed without bringing the gold. At last came the fatal day on which the firm had bills maturing: to enormous amounts. The steamer was telegraphed at daybreak; but it was found, on inquiry, that she brought no funds, and the house failed. The next arrival brought nearly half a million to the insolvents, but it was too late; they were ruined because their agent, in remitting, had been behind time.
5. A condemned man was led out for execution. He had taken human life, but under circumstances of the greatest provocation, and public sympathy was active in his behalf. Thousands had signed petitions for a reprieve', a favorable answer had been expected the night before, and though it had not come, even the sheriff felt confident that it would yet arrive in season. Thus the morning passed without the appearance of the messenger. The last moment was up. The prisoner took his place on the drop, the cap was drawn over his eyes, the bolt was drawn,
* Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France, was defeated by the Allies under the Duke of Wellington, at Waterloo, June 18, 1815. Marshal Grouchy (pronounced Grô-she') was expected to aid the emperor with a body of troops, but failed to appear.
and a lifeless body swung revolving in the wind. Just at that moment a horseman came into sight, galloping down hill, his steed covered with foam. He carried a packet in his right hand, which he waved rapidly to the crowd. He was the express rider with the reprieve. But he had come too late. A comparatively innocent man had died an ignominious death, because a watch had been five minutes too slow, making its bearer arrive behind time.
6. It is continually so in life. The best laid plans, the most important affairs, the fortunes of individuals, the weal of nations, honor, happiness, life itself, are daily sacrificed because somebody is “ behind time.” There are men who always fail in whatever they undertake, simply because they are “ behind time.” There are others who put off reformation year by year, till death seizes them, and they perish unrepentant, because forever “ behind time.” Five minutes in a crisis is worth years. It is but a little period, yet it has often saved a fortune or redeemed a people. If there is one virtue that should be cultivated more than another by him who would succeed in life, it is punctuality; if there is one error that should be avoided it is being behind time.
1 CÕL'UMN. A body of troops in deep | 4 ÄS'SỆTS. Property or effects. files, with narrow front.
5 MA-TÜR'ING. Ripening; coming to 2 RE-EN-FORCE'MENTS. Supplies of a perfected state. Bills or notes additional troops.
mature when they become due. 3 RE-ŞËRVE'. A select body of troops 6 ÎN-SÓL'VENT. One who cannot pay
kept in the rear of an army in ac- his debts. tion, to give support when re- 1 7 RE-PRIEVE'. A suspension of a sett quired.
tence of death.
XLVIII. -- EVIL INFLUENCE OF SCEPTICISM.
CAMPBELL. 1. O, LIVES there, Heaven! beneath thy dread expanse,
One hopeless, dark idolater of Chance,
2. There live, alas! of heaven-directed mien,
Of cultured soul, and sapient? eye serene,
3. Are these the pompous tidings ye proclaim,
Lights of the world, and demigods 3 of Fame ?
And wheeled in triumph through the signs of heaven ?
4. Ah me! the laurelled wreath that Murder rears,
Blood-nursed, and watered by the widow's tears,
5. Truth, ever lovely, since the world began,
The foe of tyrants, and the friend of man,-
But, sad as angels for the good man’s ‘sin,
Weep to record, and blush to give it in ! 1 RĚFT Bereft ; deprived.
16 CÔPE. The concave of the sky; an 2 SA'PI-ENT. Wise.
arch or vault over head. 8 DĚM'T-GOD. A deified hero.
6 NĪGHT'SHĀDE. A noxious plant. 4 I-BE'RI-A'ş Pi'LỌT. Columbus. Ibe-? VI''ŞIỌN-A-R¥. Prone to see or capa
ria is an ancient name of Spain. ble of seeing visions ; imaginative,
XLIX. — THE RIVER SACO.
J. G. LYONS. [The Saco (så'co) has its springs in New Hampshire, near the Notch of the White Mountains, and reaches the Atlantic after a winding course through the State of Maine. It receives the waters of many lakes and streams, passes over numerous falls, and is throughout remarkable for its clearness and beauty.]
1. Forth from New Hampshire's granite steeps
Fair Saco rolls in chainless pride,
Down the gray mountain's rugged side:
Watch that young pilgrim passing by,
The black, torn cloud, or deep-blue sky.
Through Bartlett's vales its tuneful way,
Retreating from the glare of day;
From the strong mountain's circling arms,
Among green Fryeburg's woods and farms,
For tribute from some hermit lake;
Bidding the forest echoes wake: