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FROM

Romeo and Juliet, Act II., Sc. 2.

out her father's hall she came, Where words of party strife ran high; But party zeal and party fame

Were naught to her—her love was nigh!
Through mazy paths of woodland fair,
Illumed by evening's ruby glow,
She sped. She met her lover there-

Her heart's one love-her father's foe!

Tight clasped within his arms she stood,
She nestled closer to his side;
She deemed him only grand and good-
Her joy, her triumph, and her pride!
Her lover gazed upon her face,

He thought no more of king or state;
Love healed the ancient feuds of race-
He half forgot her father's hate!

'And wilt thou trust me, darling? Say!-
When envy's shafts my name assail—
When fortune's frown obscures my day-
When foes wax bitter-friendships fail!—
Wilt thou be true, my life's one light?
If good I do, 'tis done through thee!
My star of hope, in blackest night,

Through tempest clouds, shine out on me!

'Nay, fear not, sweet! thy guardian love Shall keep me safe 'mid death and strifeAs gentle spirit from above

Shall charm with holy spell my life!

In thee, e'en yet, in thee alone,

My toils shall end, my labours cease!

In thee, when all the strife is done,

Shall be my heaven-sent, long-sought peace!

'My comrades call' 'Oh, stay!' she cried, 'Ah! true, mine own, if truth can be,

I'd cling for ever to thy side

For ever thus be near to thee!

Though kith and kin should curse thy cause,
I'd still be true, whate'er befall;

Love's empire knows no father's laws

The monarch love is lord of all!'

T. H. S. E.

THE HOUSE OF OVEREND, GURNEY, AND COMPANY; ITS FOUNDERS AND ITS FALL.

THE Gurneys hold a place almost

unique in commercial biography. Nearly all the great merchants of the world have been men who have risen from the crowd by their own enterprise, and, beginning in small ways, have made for themselves names and reputations as successful traders and men of wealth and influence; and their sons or grandsons have generally abandoned the commerce that has helped them to distinction, eager to mix with those of rank and title older than their own, and willing, if they can, to forget by what means they have been enabled to enter the circle of aristocracy. A goodly number of the titled families of England owe their origin to old merchants and shopkeepers; but their modern representatives have nothing to do with trade, and look upon it as a thing altogether beneath them. In the Gurneys, on the other hand, we see the almost solitary instance of an ancient family that, in later times, has not been ashamed to engage in commerce, and has drawn from it a dignity as great as any that could come from lengthy pedigrees and the traditions of bygone ages.

They are descended from a Hugh de Gournay, Lord of Gournay and the adjacent Barony of Le Brai, who in 1054 commanded at the Battle of Mortimer, and in 1066 accompanied William the Conqueror to England. To him and his successors were made large grants of land in Norfolk, Suffolk, and elsewhere; and the Gournays were men of mark during the ensuing centuries.

One

of his descendants was Edmund Gournay, Recorder of Norwich, in the reign of Edward III.; and from that time to this Norwich has always been the residence of some members of the family. The most notable of his successors, as far as we are concerned, was a Francis Gournay, or Gurnay, who was born about the year 1560. He seems to have been a native of Norwich, and he married the daughter of a Norwich mer

chant; but the greater part of his life was spent in London. In 1606 he was made a member of the Guild of Merchant Tailors, and for some years he lived in Broad Street ward, in the parish of Saint Mary Benetfinck, working as a merchant.

There was another merchant of his name, and a much more famous man, living in London at the same time, though apparently not of the same family. Sir Richard Gurney was born at Croydon in 1577. He was apprenticed to Mr. Richard Coleby, a silkman in Cheapside, who so liked him that, at his death, he bequeathed to him his shop and a sum of 6000l. Part of that money he spent in travelling through France and Italy,' where,' says his old biographer, he improved himself, and, by observing the trade of the respective marts as he passed, laid the foundation of his future 'traffic.' Soon after his return, it is added, being himself of no great family, he discreetly married into a family at that time commanding most of the money, and, by that, most of the nobility, gentry, and great tradesmen of England.' Thereby he became a great merchant and a very wealthy man. He was Sheriff of London in 1634, and Lord Mayor in 1641. He was a great benefactor to the Clothworkers' Company, of which he was a member and warden, and he gave freely to all sorts of City charities. He also, being a sturdy Royalist, lent or gave immense sums of money to King Charles I.; at one time, on his majesty's return from Scotland, spending 4000l. in entertaining him. He was one of the great champions of Charles's cause in the City, during the commencement of the Commonwealth struggle. In 1640, when he was sixty-three years old, it is recorded, one night, with thirty or forty lights and a few attendants, he rushed suddenly out of the house on thousands, with the City sword drawn, who immediately retired to their own houses and gave over their design.' This excess

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