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could not pass into his sluggish sympathies! For our own part,
every time we used to read a newspaper, we could have addressed
the invisible editor in the language of Burns, written some half
a century ago.

"Kind sir, I've read your paper through,
And, faith, to me 't was really new!
How guessed ye, sir, what maist I wanted?
This monie a day I've grained and gaunted
To ken what French mischief was brewin',
Or what the drumlie Dutch were doing;
Or how the collieshangie works
Atween the Russians and the Turks;
Or if the Swede, before he halt,
Would play anither Charles the Twalt;
If Denmark, any body spak' o't,

Or Poland, wha had now the tack o't!

If Spaniard, Portuguese, or Swiss,
Were saying or taking aught amiss;
Or how our merry lads at hame,

In Britain's court keep up the game!" This predilection for newspaper reading was, doubtless, at least stimulated by an event in our "education." In the olden time of our youth, and before we had ventured to meditate on personal shaving, we enjoyed the entrée of a barber's shop, which was, of course, the haunt of the politicians of a suburban neighbourhood. Being of a grave political disposition, we were much edified by the talk; and being withal a little gregarious, we could not resist the temptation of disclosing the secret of our privilege to a few schoolfellows. This led to a proposition for an introduction; and in the course of an evening or two, half-a-dozen urchins were seen, like so many puppies, first sneaking in, and then boldly entering the barber's shop, until the grown-up idlers began to feel the inconvenience of a crowd. The barber evidently felt disposed to get rid of the intruders; but being a politician of no ordinary character, (a politician, says the Dictionary, is not only one versed in the arts of government, but a man of artifice, one of deep contrivance,) he did not like to turn us out bodily, inasmuch as one or two of us had papas who patronised his lathering-box, and all of us had mothers who might avenge our cause. At last, however, he got hold of a plea of ejectment. One of our juvenile crew, the biggest and the most blubbering, who had joined us because the others had joined us, instead of sitting in silence, and picking up the crumbs of intelligence which fell from the lips of the wise men, was incessantly disturbing them and us, by foolish ejaculations and tricky restlessness. We, in particular, endeavoured to frown him into silence, but he only mocked our reverential and staid look, and kept the others tittering. At last, an unlucky reader of the old newspaper, thumbed in the barber's shop, met with some combination of consonants in a Russian or a Polish name, which fairly baffled his powers of utterance; he tried at it again and again, but every repetition only produced a more unearthly sound; big blubbering Tom began to laugh! we all laughed, and the seniors caught the infection; whereupon the indignant reader, aided by the barber, drove us all out into the street.

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barber, for the good of his community, which was considered to be generous; and we departed that night in the joyous conviction of having not only regained our place, "and something more," but that we had a strong probability of succeeding to the readership in chief, on the resignation or death of the then incumbent.

It was a glorious triumph! We were soon called upon to read, pro tem.; and perched on a high stool, we could look out from our "Paradise Regained," and see, occasionally, that an ejected companion was looking in, like the Peri at the gate, and envying our elevation. Blubbering Tom never went past, of an evening, without sending in some hideous yell; but then he was too great a coward to wait and see what effect it produced, for just as his howl was ringing in the apartment, the clatter of his hoofs might be heard in the distance. How we drank in all the talk! listening, as greedily as ever Desdemona did, to confused details about the French, and the Spaniards, and the Peninsular war, and "Boney," and Wellington, interlarded with Botany Bay, Cobbett and Burdett, the House of Commons, radical reform, emigration, and the United States. We had, as all such communities have, an Oracle : but he was no bawling, pothouse oracle, who thinks it a necessary portion of his duty to roar his companions down. No! there he sat, (and a particular corner was conventionally assigned him,) with pipe in hand, (he smoked, but he was no cloudy smoker,) now tranquilly emitting a puff or an opinion, the reader of the newspaper all the while keeping an eye on the Oracle, to know when to make the proper pauses. Sir Oracle had some claims to be a man of authority. He had been up to London, had seen the House of Commons, and the "big wigs" in Westminster Hall; knew distinctly, and without any kind of doubt or hesitation, the names of the chief European capitals and monarchs; could tell whether any leading man was a member of the government, or of the government's opposition; was a friend of reform, but always shook his head when asked whether a king or a president was best adapted to this country. Peace to his ashes!-he died before the days of Emancipation and the Reform Bill; and had he lived till now, all his notions, cut, squared, and stereotyped for use, must have been shattered to pieces, in the vain attempt to understand the present political state of affairs.

dors.

We know not what degree of reverence, if any, we should now be disposed to feel towards our Oracle, but at that time we thought him as good a statesman as the best of them, and quite competent to take the helm of affairs; and grave and quiet as he was, he was not disinclined to think so himself. His wrath was always roused at the idea of there being any secresy in the art of government; and he heartily sneezed at the notion of keeping "tricky "—i. e. "political"-men at different courts, in the capacity of ambassaWhy, look ye now," he would say, with some vehemence, "if I were prime-ear, I would just send off a letter, right smack, to the king or the emperor, or whatever he might be, and say as how I would have such a thing done, or I wouldn't have it; and so," (knocking the ashes out of his pipe,) "I would save all them ambassadors' salaries-for it would only cost the postage, d'ye see!" This latter sentiment was always heartily apWe were much grieved at the loss of our privilege, for having, plauded by the senate of the barber's shop. But we must not as we have intimated, a kind of premature gravity about us, and laugh over the memory of our Oracle. Crude as were his ideas, eager to look through the "loopholes" of our retreat, into the and deficient as was his information, he had yet got a grip of the vast and busy world, we had much enjoyed the glimpses we had of ends of a few elementary truths in political science; and we believe it in the barber's shop. How to get restored was now our anxiety; that he laid the foundation of any little political knowledge we we cast off our frivolous companions, and in various ways pre- now possess. And we believe that our own "political career is sented ourselves solus to the barber's notice: but he, doubtless representative of the state of feeling of a large portion of the popuafraid that one puppy might bring the pack, gave no encourage-lation of the British isles. Having got hold of the ends of a few ment to beseeching looks. At last a political contrivance restored us to the field of politics. There came in our way an actual second or third hand London newspaper, which we secured for twopence; and rushing with it, as a passport, in our hand, fearlessly entered the shop, and showed it all round the company. Then we began to read, and our reading was praised for its distinctness; then we ventured a timid observation, which was thought to be sagacious; then we made the paper a present to the

political truths, they fancy themselves masters of the science, whose great, though hitherto perverted, purpose is to discover the best means of diffusing the greatest amount of happiness amongst the greatest number. Fancying themselves masters of it, the transition is easy to a belief that any ordinary amount of intelligence is equal to the art of government; and that a shrewd man from the working ranks is as capable of sitting in the cabinet, as an edu cated man of rank, who has passed from youth to manhood in the

busy arena of politics. Alas! if it requires so large an amount of concentrated intelligence to understand a daily newspaper, what must be required to constitute an effective minister of state! It was the opinion of Mr. Wilberforce, that men seldom succeeded in the House of Commons who had not entered it before thirty years of age. This is probably too strong: but it is illustrative of the fact, that to be an able public man, an early and often severe training is necessary.

Looking upon all newspaper readers as necessarily politicians, we may classify them, as they classify themselves. The first class read all the paper, for they generally have most time to do so, and feel most interested in all its contents. But then they are orderly

can bespeak "a chop and the paper," and when they get both, carefully fold up the broadsheet square-wise, plant it against the water-bottle or a vinegar-cruet, and gratify mind and body at the same moment. Eager and intelligent workmen sometimes club for a daily newspaper, which is brought to their workshop, and circulates from hand to hand; or they wait till one o'clock, when mine host of the tap-room takes care that the paper is abstracted from the parlour, and reserved for those who come to cook their own beef-steaks, or eat their cold meat; and here, while half-adozen are munching, one reads aloud. But it would be endless to classify all the newspaper readers; from the out-and-outer to him or her who cares for nothing but the police reports, and enjoy

eloquent amplifications of a thumping murder.

in their habits, and read with a due regard to relation and propor-nothing but the blazing description of an "awful fire," or the tion. The large type, devoted to discussions as to whether this At the present moment, the number of newspaper readers man is a sly knave or an accomplished statesman, or the other a "have increased, are increasing," and, moreover, "ought not to kind fellow or a profligate premier, is, of course, read first. Here, be diminished." But how many among this increasing class can too. they find all sorts of criminations, insinuations, anticipations, be ranked amongst the true politicians, the thoughtful and dispasand explanations; that such a Bishop said so and so, and he sionate men, who can weigh every thing in the balance of an meant so and so, and if he don't take care he will find himself in instructed judgment? "Profound knowledge," says a profound the wrong box; and such a man may be a quiz and an alder- thinker, "of political science, as of the other sciences, will always man, but certainly not a profound politician. Official and half-ously. But the multitude are fully competent to conceive the be confined to the comparatively few who study it long and assiduofficial announcements, and "passages of arms" between the rival leading principles, and to apply those leading principles to partipapers, belong also to the region of large type, as well as the cular cases. And if they were imbued with those principles, and summaries of foreign news; and all these large-type columns are were practised in the art of applying them, they would be docile diligently perused by busiless barristers, and such portions of their to the voice of reason, and armed against sophistry and error. clerks as have a small degree of first-class political taste; clerks in There is a wide and important difference between ignorance of Downing-street and Somerset House; poor-law guardians; clerks principles and ignorance of particulars or details. The man who is ignorant of principles, and unpractised in right reasoning, is of the peace; and confidential factotums in large establishments. imbecile as well as ignorant. The man who is simply ignorant of They pass gradually onwards from the large type to the small particulars or details, can reason correctly from premises which type; and after laughing over the trimming which one paper gives are suggested to his understanding, and can justly estimate the to another, or marvelling who is to be the new bishop or the new consequences which are drawn from those premises by others. If judge, or else, if it be parliamentary time, sucking the juice of a the minds of the many were informed and invigorated, so far as debate, they may have a spare chuckle of wonder for an earth- their position will permit, they could distinguish the statements quake in Syria, which has destroyed 20,000 persons, a shake of and reasonings of their instructed and judicious friends, from the lies and fallacies of those who would use them to sinister purposes, the head for the slaughter of 300 Arabs by the Algerine French, or and from the equally pernicious nonsense of their weak and ignoof Russians by the Circassians, or a peevish remark on the last rant well-wishers. Possessed of directing principles, able to revolution in South America. We have put barristers' clerks-or reason rightly, helped to the requisite premises by accurate and at least a portion of them-amongst the first class, or regular read- comprehensive inquirers, they could examine and fathom the the-newspaper politicians: but it is well to say only a portion of questions which it most behoves them to understand. them; for, in truth, this sort of gentry, abounding in London, are generally mère roarers, who, in tavern-parlours, lay bets as to how many were polled at the last Middlesex election, or how long the present ministry will endure.

But even amongst the readers of all the newspaper, there are different departments more attractive to some than to others. Some are profound in the genealogies of German princes, and the personal qualities of kings; others take more kindly to the national debt, exchequer bills, and the budget; some, again, are fond of the Gazette quarter, and the army and navy intelligence; others look after the statutes made and provided, expired, or expiring; while reports of parliamentary committees, or the state of the registration, prove most grateful to perhaps a very considerable number.

Busy merchants have not, of course, time to read all the paper: but they must see the City article, the commercial news, and glance over the advertisements, if they have any object in view. Amongst this class, "division of labour" is practised to a large extent. What one individual has not read, another has, and so they go on the principle of exchange; scattered individuals amongst the class have taste or time for reading the larger portion of the paper, and thus blanks are filled up; or else their intelligent ." young men have been early at the counting-house, have snatched a first reading, and drop hints of important matters in the pauses of opening letters and receiving orders. Thus, by conversation, the contents of the newspaper-the whole newspaper, though we will not say nothing but the newspaper-float through the city.

"

Those clerks and others who are not privileged to idie half an hour in the counting-room, must reserve their curiosity till they

"The broad or leading principles of the science of political economy may be mastered, with moderate attention, in a short period. With these simple but commanding principles, a number of important questions are easily resolved: and if the multitude as they can and will-shall ever understand these principles, many pernicious principles will be extirpated from the popular mind, and truths of ineffable moment planted in their stead. For example, in many or all countries (the least civilised not excepted) the prevalent opinions and sentiments of the working people are certhe ignorant poor, the inequality which inevitably follows the tainly not consistent with the complete security of property. To beneficent institution of property is necessarily invidious. That they who toil and produce should fare scantily, whilst others, who "delve not, nor spin," batten on the fruits of labour, seems, to the jaundiced eyes of the poor and the ignorant, a monstrous state of things; an arrangement upheld by the few at the cost of the Providence. many, and flatly inconsistent with the benevolent purposes of

"A statement of the numerous evils which flow from this single prejudice would occupy a volume. But nothing but the diffusion of political knowledge through the great mass of the people will go to the root of the evil. Nothing but this will cure or alleviate the poverty which is the ordinary incentive to crime. Nothing but this will extirpate their prejudices, and correct their moral by enlightened opinion, and which operate so potently on the sentiments; will lay them under the restraints which are imposed higher and more cultivated classes: and the multitude, in civilised communities, would soon acquire the talent of reasoning distinctly and justly, if one of the weightiest duties which God has laid upon governments were performed with fidelity and zeal. A small fraction of the sums which are squandered in needless war would provide complete instruction for the people-would give this important class that portion in the knowledge of the age which consists with the nature of their callings, and with the necessity of toiling for a livelihood."

MATTHEW POLLEN, THE MILLER OF FLORESTON. AMONGST the books published a few months ago was one which

has not received a tithe of the attention it deserves. We give the

title of it below*. It is the production of an acute, thoughtful, and truly benevolent mind; one whose very crotchets are so brimful of goodness and humanity, that the worst a critic can do is to smile pleasantly at them. If our recommendation should induce any of our readers to peruse the book, we must warn them not to expect a story full of novel and startling incidents, and of which one cannot guess the end from the beginning. The author gives us his opinions through the medium of an interesting story; but he is rather contemptuous of dramatic art, and he might have made his story more telling and effective for that large classgeneral readers.

a

The title-page tells the story. "Floreston," the supposed "manor," has become ruined, depraved, and pauperised, in the hands of absentee, fox-hunting, and gambling proprietors; and when it is sold to pay "incumbrances," it passes into the hands of new lord of the manor," an unknown but wealthy individual, who, to the astonishment of all "hangers-on," appears to be a person incapable of "bringing down his bird," or clearing a fivebarred gate. But he effects a wonderful revolution, of which we will say no more, than that all who are anxious to see what might be done when plain goodness has will, power, and opportunity in its hands, must read "Floreston, or the New Lord of the Manor." Amongst the many worthless and heartless tenants of Floreston, under the old system, there was one worthy man, who "walked in his integrity," and had a family worthy of himself. Here is his picture.

"In this village of Floreston there had lived to an advanced age a miller of the name of Matthew Pollen. His labours and cares, and that far greater portion of his life which had rolled on, while there was any wind stirring, were devoted to and spent in his mill; which of course was a windmill, and of that particular construction called a post-mill.

'The reader must not imagine that the author's intention here is merely to show that old Pollen had long enjoyed an airy position, for that will be evident from the very nature of his machine and his occupation. Windmills, for obvious reasons, are placed in open and generally in elevated situations, and Pollen's mill was so situated as to give him the advantage of looking down on his immediate neighbourhood; of seeing many distant objects; and occasionally he was enabled to feel inspirations of which many persons in lower and stiller life have little or no conception: for though he had not, in the language of the psalmist, been down to the sea in ships, to occupy his business in great waters, he had ascended up into his creaking machine, for purposes no less honourable, and had rode out many a wintry night, with the mighty winds roaring above, and around, and beneath him. His breast had been bared, as it were, to the All-seeing and Mighty One; and he had acquired a steadiness of nerve and of purpose where thousands would have quailed and have blanched with fear. "Thus he continued to discharge the duties of his vocation, with all Floreston, as it were, spread out under his feet; and scarcely more incessantly did the waves of light and shadow, on a stirring and genial March day, chase each other across the chequered territory of his native township, than were his kindly wishes and ejaculations for the welfare of all his neighbours wafted from the door and the little tottering windows of his mill: in which there was the more merit, perhaps, from the circumstance of his having been a person very frequently complained of for taking rather too much toll a complaint, probably, as ancient

as his trade.

"And it must be confessed that the established custom of selfremuneration, by virtue of which the miller takes his toll out of the grists, varying as they do, in size and quality, from the ample sack of the substantial yeoman to the half-peck bag of the lonely widow, does require a wholesome exercise of the conscience at the critical moment of dipping in the toll-dish. But we are persuaded that Matthew always remembered whose eye was upon him on

*Floreston: or the New Lord of the Manor. A Tale of Humanity. Comrising the History of a Rural Revolution from Vice and Misery to Virtue and lappiness. Dedicated to the Landed Proprietors of the United Kingdom. London: Rickerby. 1839.

those occasions; and that when he came to untie the little bag, he remembered that its contents had been picked out, with infinite toil and care, from the hand-lacerating stubbles, and that every kernel of it would appear as a witness for or against him, accordingly as he should deal justly or unjustly.

Matthew, however, in spite of all such insinuations, had, as already stated, lived long and well; and it would be contrary to all experience to suppose that such a man had not won the esteem of many estimable persons; for his intercourse with his neighbours had been characterised by that habit of returning good for evil, which, when once acquired, and worn to the shape and circumstances of the wearer, sits as easily under the pressure of a calumny, and allows as much latitude for the performance of all the neighbourly duties, as the gossamer of the harvest breeze for the revolutions of a mill's sails. Hence, as his life had been useful, and his mind easy, his body was healthy; and as it is written, The end of the upright man is peace,' so now, being old, and full of days, he was revered by many as the Gamaliel of social and domestic life; and his two sons, Walter and David, and his only surviving and unmarried daughter, Maria, heard, from his arm-chair and his bed-side, many most affecting and useful variations of that ancient theme, Lo, I die.'

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"It is seldom that the whole of what may be called a parent's dying injunctions are delivered in one connected and final charge; for it is a wise ordination of Providence that, in most families, the fruits of experience shall gradually ripen and begin to drop, long before the tree which bears them has arrived at the last stage of decay: nor did the good man in the present instance defer every thing to the latest moment.

"There is in most struggling families-for in families either above or below the necessity for making a struggle, of some kind or other, to acquire or retain respectability, there is little to be learned that is worth remembering-but there is in most struggling. families a kind of oral circulating library of household aphorisms; which, however familiarised by frequent repetition during the lifetime of their utterer, will suddenly appear, with him, to 'shuffle off this mortal coil,' and to put on immortality,' and so long as a remnant of the family shall adhere together, will retain their authority. They will even revive, as pious reminiscences, after every temporary separation, and continue to be quoted, with the appended authority, As poor father used to say.'

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"In this extended sense should be understood Matthew Pollen's

dying injunctions. His residence was down in the village; and he began to find that on the sudden rising of a good stiff breeze, he could not get up to his mill with his wonted alacrity; so that much of what machinists called the 'propelling power' was wasted; it either rushed with bootless fury between the naked ribs of his shivering sails, or by its more subdued moanings would sometimes appear to chide him, though not unkindly, for the tardiness of his age. But his canvas once spread, his sails once briskly revolving, and himself once fairly mounted up into the region of his professional cares and clamours, the seasons long appeared to pass away only to come round again, like the cogs in his wheels; and it was not until an advanced period of his life that he found it decidedly more convenient to stay at home altogether, than to fatigue himself with any more journeys to the mill. the Lumsbury family had of course reached the ears of the Pollens; for, as is usual in such cases, every one in the village most disinterestedly held his opinion on the matter very much at the service of all his neighbours. One said a London merchant had bought it, and mentioned the precise sum that had been given for it; another insisted upon it that both Floreston and Kennelstead had been purchased in one lot, by one of a class of persons remarkable in England for many acres and few affections; another roundly asserted that a fox-hunting lord had bought it, and intended to adorn it with a new range of stables, and a complement of dog-kennels to correspond; and, moreover, that he would erect for himself a hunting box' on the property.' The thin-legged and freckle-faced loiterers of the inn-gateways appeared to favour the latter opinion; and began upon the strength of it to take their rum neat, and to embed their chins deeper than ever in their cravats; they even confidently winked of pigeon-matches, dogfights, and steeple-chases, to come off' as soon as his imaginary lordship, or his steward, should come down to take possession.' Every doubtful issue was the subject of a wager, and in fool-hardy frolics every thing undesirable was attempted. The attorney sent to his London bookseller in Bell-yard for the latest decisions in cases of horse-warranty, horse-whipping, and other assaults, and for all the statutes and decisions on nocturnal disturbances. The

"The news of the entire alienation of the Floreston estate from

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knacker, in anticipation of my lord's exclusive patronage, bespoke a bran-new poleaxe, sharpened up his professional instruments, and was once or twice seen to smile, in anticipation of better times.

"When Walter and David Pollen were absent from home on their professional business in an evening, which was very frequently, few houses were stiller than the miller's. Old Matthew and his daughter often sat for half-an-hour at a time in that kind of silence during which some minds will get engaged in a world of busy and useful enterprises. The purring of his cat would sometimes reconduct him into one of his best trains of thinking; and, in imagination, he would again look abroad from one of his little mill-windows upon a neighbourhood in which he had long acted a conspicuous part. The clock frequently struck at the root of a capital idea, and in taking up her scissors, Maria would sometimes undesignedly clip off the thread of a generous purpose.

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"And then there is the daughter, whom God has given me to be the comfort of my old age, and to do honour in all sorts of ways to my instructions: what shall I say for her?

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'Oh, father!' said Maria, 'you often tell me I resemble my mother; surely that is praise enough, and, I fear, more than I shall ever deserve.' At this moment her quick ear caught the welcome sounds of her brothers' voices; who, one on his return from Grimton, and the other from the home-circuit of bagging, had met, and by their united exertions were disencumbering old Ben of his bags and panniers; while the wearied old horse stood pushing forward his ears, in anticipation of the mealy luxuries which awaited him in his manger.

"Maria flew to the door, and out went the candle; a signal to which the old Miller instantly responded, by beginning, in the same key that the wind was singing in, to whistle with all his might as much as to say (if there had been time for any words) To the mill! to the mill! Maria soon came in again, laughing between her fond brothers, and all was bustle to hasten Walter away to the mill. Old Matthew, whose spirits appeared to rise with the occasion, exclaimed, "It promises to be a stirring breeze, boy; but do not be sparing of your canvas; and take my word for it, if it holds, that by the time David comes to relieve you at four in the morning, the old jade will have done some execution.' After a hasty repast, Walter took the key and departed."

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"One evening, a few weeks after the crisis at the rectory, of which an account was given in the preceding chapter, and just as the clock gave warning for eight, Matthew inquired of his daughter how Miss Bolingdon was. Maria said that she had called that day, as usual, to inquire, and found her a little better; but that Mrs. Bolingdon was herself in but very indifferent health. Matthew said he should not give up his hopes of the poor child's recovery, if her good qualities could be duly cultivated; but that humanity sickened, or grew distorted, wherever its innate goodWhile Walter is absent at the Mill, David tells his adventures, ness was repressed. Not,' said he, that I blame either Mrs. in his expedition of mercy, to visit the "widow and the fatherless Bolingdon or her husband, who is as far from mental health as she is from bodily; for I believe Mrs. Bolingdon to be a lady of in the Grimton Union workhouse. He had great difficulty in an excellent disposition and understanding, but perverted by her gaining an order of admission, being bandied from one poor law breeding and education, as they call it. And it is not to be won-guardian to another, and only obtained admission through one of dered at, that Mr. Bolingdon's conduct, as a Christian minister, those "casual accidents on which so much frequently hangs-in should have been questionable; nor that his sermons should have a novel. Be this as it may, David Pollen's adventures at Grimton been considered dull and inefficient, nor that even the church were the commencement of events which made an extraordinary itself should have been looked upon as an incumbrance in the parish, when we consider that his mind, until within the last few alteration in the future circumstances of the miller's family. weeks, has been chained down by the fear of offending his wife's While he is telling his adventures, Walter, at the mill, is visited relations; and that he has lived in the perpetual fear of being by a "gentleman in disguise," who is afterwards discovered to be turned out of the rectory; and by those, too, who have neither "the new lord of the manor" himself; but as his present objects heads to comprehend, nor hearts to feel, the design and blessing and intentions are unknown, the old miller, anxious for his family, of a truly Christian church, nor to appreciate its minister's and unused to anything but "rack" renting, anticipates much evil. qualities: but I know he is a good man, and my heart has been grieved to see him in a state of bondage. Now, however, he speaks We must, however, let Walter tell the story :out like a man; and we can understand him. The boys both tell me, and you tell me, that his sermons are now what they ought to be; and that he preaches JESUS and Humanity boldly.'

"Father,' said Maria, interrupting her venerable parent, he was better than ever last Sunday.'

"'Very good,' said Matthew. 'So long as he was timid and equivocal, it would have been difficult to render him any service; but now he is a faithful minister of God and man, if smitten, here shall he and his find a home, till they can be provided with a better. I know, my dear child, that every case of distress in our parish is attended to by you, so far as you can and dare render assistance; but pray tell me what has become of Bradley's two little daughters?'

"Maria replied, that both could now read and write, and could work very neatly with their needles; but that their situations were so laborious, filthy, and wretched, that their health was evidently giving way. Mrs. Bolingdon and herself had long wished to remove them; but if they did so before other situations were ready for them, the guardians had intimated that they must both be sent off together to the union workhouse after their father.

"When the clock had struck eight, another silence ensued, which again snapped off as a spark out of the fire sent Maria for a moment from her chair and her work; when Matthew said, 'I wish, after all, that David had gone upon old Ben part of the way to Grimton to-day, with those cakes. It is now getting late.'

"Maria reminded her father that her brother Walter had been obliged to take old Ben with him a bagging; that the grists were very numerous, and some of them so heavy, that it was as much as the poor animal could do to get up to the mill with his load; and that though it was twenty-six miles to Grimton and back, yet David said he would always rather carry the little gifts to our unfortunate neighbours himself, than deprive the poor old horse of his chance of a day's rest.

"You all know that by the time I could get up to the mill, clothe her sails, and set her going for a few minutes, the wind dropped. Thinking, from some indications over the woods to the westward, that it might stir again, I left the sails clothed, and went up into the mill, where, without procuring a light, I sat down for a little time to rest myself. After considering for a few minutes whose grists ought to have the first turn, in case the wind should revive, I perceived somebody, apparently not much accustomed to climbing, coming up the steps into the mill; and I demanded to know who he was and what was his business. He deferred his answer, however, till he found himself safely landed within the threshold, when he said he only wanted to have a few minutes' conversation with me. So I wiped the flour, as well as 1 could, with some flour-bags, from the top of the best stool, and he seated himself upon it without further ceremony. " And so, young man,' ," said he, "you have already returned from Grimton." I assured him I had not been to Grimton. "You are the son of Mr. Pollen, the miller," said he, "are you not?" "I am, sir," said I; "but I have a brother." "Oh, then," said he, "it was your brother that called upon the Rev. Mr. Hardwick for permission to enter the union workhouse?" I assured him that I was entirely ignorant of any thing that had happened at Grimton to-day.'

"Here Matthew Pollen interrupted his son Walter by saying, that David had already related to Maria and himself every thing that had occurred at Grimton. 'And now,' added the aged miiler, since you all know every thing that has happened, I will proceed, in a very few words, to tell you things that will happen, and that will be fully accomplished before this day six months. My children, I already perceive that our rent is to be raised: depend upon it we shall be discharged. As a churchman, I am grieved to say it, but the pluralist and sinecure clergy have ever been most prompt and forward at the call of mischief; and as good men, as many of them undoubtedly are, still better have been spoiled by I should say the half their temptations and worldly cares. You now see, my children, that the last words of Hardwick, the clergyman, did not escape my attention, much as I was interested in all the other parts of David's narrative.'

"That David is a good boy,' said Matthew Pollen. "Yes, father, that he is,' said Maria. best that ever lived, if he had not a brother.' "Ay, there is my Walter too. God bless the boys "Amen!' responded the affectionate sister.

"But, father,' said Walter, who had meekly and patiently refrained from interrupting his venerable parent; 'there were none of the usual mischievous features about my visitor; and, in particular, I can assure you, that he spoke not with the broad and harsh rent-raising accent, as you call it, of either Scotland or Yorkshire.' "Well then,' said Matthew Pollen, 'I am sorry I interrupted you, so pray go on.' David was about to say something, when Maria interposed with the expression of a wish that Walter could be allowed to tell his own story in his own way.

"My dear child,' said Matthew, your wish ought to be gratified the boy shall proceed, and I will not utter another word till he is done-if I can help it.' Walter proceeded :—

"The gentleman asked me what rent we paid; [Matthew Pollen groaned ;] how much for the mill; [Matthew groaned again;] how much for the house; [another groan;] how much we could grind in a week; [more groaning;] what corn was a bushel, and what flour was per stone, with other questions,' (to all of which Matthew responded by similar expressions of disapprobation.) At length,' continued Walter, 'seeing some little bags lying amongst the great ones (for I had lighted the lamp), he asked me if we tolled the little grists in proportion to the great ones ??

"Here Matthew could hold no longer, but exclaimed, 'My children, you well know, and He who is to be my judge knows, that I have never tolled the little grists at all!'

"We well know it, dearest father!' responded the devoted children. Matthew continued: I have taken what was my due from the large grists; and for many years have been a purchaser of corn, which I have ground for my own sale; and all the neighbourhood can testify that Matthew Pollen's flour is always preferred for its fineness, weight, and quality, to any other. I have ever come forward, so far as I dare, to answer the calls of distress; and have still prospered, by the blessing of God, upon my industry and just dealings; but now, I suppose, the old mill is to be taken from me and mine. You see, my children, that I am right after all; we must turn out.'

46 4

No, father, no!' said Walter; indeed you are quite mistaken. He was very inquisitive, I grant; but when I had procured a light, I became convinced he was not the man for any thing nefarious; for though he made the inquiries I have mentioned, he made far more earnest ones concerning the poor, their treatment, their morals, and means of instruction; all which I answered to the best of my ability. He inquired most kindly about yourself, our dear Maria, and my brother David. Then, in looking about, he observed the old mill Bible lying open in its place, close underneath the little window where we stand to read it. He observed your contrivance of the suspended pound weight to set upon the leaves, and keep them from being blown over; and he read your legend round the rim of it, "A just weight and balance are the Lord's, all the weights of the bag are his work." Prov. xvi. 11. He then took up the tolling-dish, and on that he also read your motto of our Lord's words, "With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." Matt. vii. 11. And as the spindle of the mill at that time was pointed to the west, the Bible window, of course, looked to the south, so I pushed the slide out of the way, to let him see how you had been enabled to study your Bible, even by the moonlight; with the requisite advantage of what you called your look-out. He appeared not exactly to comprehend the object of such an arrangement, therefore I proceeded more particularly to explain it.

"In the first place, I told him it was your opinion that every one ought to fix his Bible, for study, exactly breast-high: it being your opinion, that if used any higher it was very apt to lead the student into polemical heats and animosities; and, if lower, no less liable to bring in a train of inordinate desires.

"And then, as to your "look-out," by night and by day, I proceeded to explain the comforts and advantages you derived from it while perusing and studying the sacred writings; impressing upon him, as strongly as I could, your objection to the study of the Bible wholly within dead walls, whenever it could be avoided, as being calculated to give to every body's Bible readings a harsh and narrow interpretation, and, therefore, inadequate to a due conception of the revealed will of the Universal Benefactor. I repeated to him your frequent expression, that the Bible is but the text of human duty, of which the world at large is the stage and practical commentary.

"I moreover reminded him of the peculiar construction and

*The axis on which the sails revolve.

revolving properties of the machine in which we were standing; and thence explained that your "look out," which must, of necessity be continually varying, brought to your mind every wrong done or received to or from your neighbours in all directions; and secured to you, from every wind that blew, the inestim. able comforts of pardon and peace; and concluded with representing to him, that whether your "look-out" were upon our own immediate neighbourhood, or upon fields of corn, or curving slades, or grey fallows, or woods, or hills, or distant spires; or the sun, the clouds, or storms by day, or the moon, or more distant orbs, revealed to the eye in the silent watches of the cloudless night,— all-all had demanded, and had received of you the most devout, the most hopeful, the most liberal, and the most extended interpretation.

"He reseated himself on the stool for a few minutes in profound silence. He then said he had come to Floreston on some particular business, from a considerable distance, and must immediately return; but seeing the mill slowly revolving in the moonlight, he said, he had been induced to visit it. "As to your father, young man," said he, "I shall feel that I am but a heathen until I can be personally acquainted with him." After another pause, he arose and offered his hand to me; I placed mine within it, and he gave me what you call the squeeze of sincerity. He descended the mill-steps, struck off towards the main road, in the direction of the Lumsbury Arms, and soon disappeared.'

"To all this Matthew Pollen faintly replied, that, like an old and decayed mill, he felt himself at last overstrained by the work of one gusty night. 'I cannot reach you, my children,' said he : my Walter, who has so accurately remembered, and so well and truly declared my habits and purposes; my ever-loving Maria, the image of my sainted wife; and my generous boy David-come to me, my children, and receive my benediction. I am better now; but be not grieved when I say I was very unwell while Walter was telling us what happened at the mill.' His children knelt before him, and he placed his enfeebled hands successively upon their heads. When they had arisen, he requested one or other of them to recite different prayers which had been composed by himself during his nocturnal meditations in the mill, and which had been put into writing for family use. He exhorted his children to be united and faithful to each other in all things. He then, with all his strength, besought them, severally and collectively, to consider themselves as of the number of those connecting links which have served in past times, and are serving in the present, to prevent the most ancient testimonies and future beneficent purposes of the Holy One from being rent asunder by the corruptions of the world; and to act up to that character, as if everything depended upon themselves. Being comforted by these devout exercises, and by the filial attentions of his children, he desired them to sing his requiem, as he called it; to the last dying fall' of which he had frequently, during his latter years, retired to his bed.

"They then sang it, and with that mingled and soothing harmony, which is the most natural and elegant solace of minds imbued with philanthropy and ennobled with hope; and, as the closing repetitions, long drawn out,' still lingered on the ear and in the heart, the old miller was assisted to that bed, from whence, in his mortal state, he was to rise NO MORE.'

The old man did not thus live to see the regeneration of Floreston: but we may whisper to the reader that Maria Pollen becomes the "lady of the manor," and that her brothers rose to be amongst the new and true nobility of this new Utopia.

MUSIC OF HUMANITY.
I have learned

To look on nature, not as in the hour

Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still sad music of humanity,
Not harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue: and I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts-a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean, and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man:
A motive and a spirit that impels

All thinking things, all object of all thought,
And rolls through all things.—Wordsworth.

"Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his.' Amen."

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