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At last there came an April morning bright;
Fair rose the sun, touching the roofs with light.
Wondering, I stood, within a stately square,
Rich with carved capitals on pillars fair;
And, in the midst, the palace and the hall
And the wide gateway open now for all!
I knew the place, and in my heart I knew
The time had come to prove the vision true
Now shall I know her name by whom this change is wrought;
"Surely a crown├Ęd queen!" I ignorantly thought.

Prince, peer, and prelate, pass along the street.
The crowds are silent; they are there to greet
One only: so they care not for the state
Of those the world deems noble, fair, or great.
There is a hush, and then a deafening cheer
A people's voice! She comes, she comesshe's here!
No sovereign she, save that she rules by love,
Drawing her sway from the pure Fount above.
O, gentle lady, may thy work be blest
To thousands when thou art thyself at rest!
And may the name of ANGELA remain
Watchword of pity in the homes of pain!
So shall thy memory through the years endure
Most gracious womanfriend of England's poor!


IT was a sixpence! New, clean, and
shiny, bearing upon it the image and
superscription of our queen: Victoria, D. G.
Britanniarum, &c., just like other sixpences,
but so white, so glossy, and so well-struck,
that no other sixpence on earth could have
borne comparison with it.

This was not a fact open to question. I
had already classed it among the articles
of my belief, when taking the "sixpence"
delicately between my fingers I laid it
tenderly upon my bed, and then knelt
down on the floor in order to have a better
view of it. This was my first adoration of
Mammon, my first worship of the golden
or, to speak by the card, the silvercalf.
I was five years old; the sixpence was four
years and a half my junior. Four years
and a half! This was a great deal, the
advantage of age was manifestly on my
side, and this, I suspect, had not a little to
do with the semi-patronising glances which,
notwithstanding my immense veneration
for this idolised sixpence, I occasionally
ventured to throw upon it. For I should
not, I feel, have gazed thus at an elder
sixpence. An octogenarian coin, for instance,
would have impressed me with a certain
degree of awe. It might have been round
the world in the breeches-pocket of Captain
Cook, it might have witnessed Trafalgar
from the waistcoat of Lord Nelson, it might
have passed through the hard fingers of
the Iron Duke. A sixpence of that sort
could not have been viewed with flippancy.
No, it was better to have a young and
inexperienced sixpence, a sixpence with all
its troubles before it, like a youthful bear.
It and I were more on a footing of equality;
there was no need for me to stand upon
ceremony with it, and I could freely give vent
to my sentiments in its presence without
transgressing the laws of propriety. There
was no fear of its looking sourly at me, as
much as to say, "You little simpleton, it is
lamentable for a coin like me to fall into
such ill-bred hands as yours. Nor Burke,
nor Sheridan, nor Charles James Fox, all
of whom I knew most intimately, ever
grinned at me as you do; and the young
William Pitt (to whom I was introduced
by his illustrious father the Earl of  Chatham),
never laughed at me."

That was the great advantage of a young
sixpence, it being so fresh to the ways of
society. There was no danger of its having
learned its manners from the Prince
Regent, or modelled its demeanour upon
that of Lord Castlereagh. It could afford
to be indulgent if I chuckled too loud, and
could make allowances, if in the jubilant
pride of possession, I rubbed my hands
too ecstatically. Besides, considering the
matter from a more material point of view,
a young sixpence was larger, brighter,
heavier, than an old one; there seemed to
be more of it; there were no disgraceful
patches of black about it, such as spoke of
a sojourn in a dust-bin, in the till of a
ragshop, or in the purse of an economical
sweep. The features of the queen upon it
were not disfigured by scars, crosses, or
knife-marks to prove that its former
possessors suspected the honesty of their
familiars, and were obliged for prudence
sake to mark their coins. It had no
unseemly holes bored in it, and no Hebrew
had sweated it to the thinness of a bit of tin.
It had everything in its favourbeauty,
youth, distinction, and novelty. For you must
remember it was my first sixpence, the first
coin upon which I had ever gazed as my
own, the first money of which I had ever
had the free disposal. True, a few specimens
of the currency had occasionally
passed through my hands, in the shape of
fugitive halfpence; but as my mother had
always requested me to put these into the
poor-box, I could scarcely be said to have
had the full enjoyment of them. Hence
this money was indeed my first, and, O
Plutus! the gold mines of Peru, made over
to me by bond, duly signed and sealed,
would have delighted me less than this

It was my father who had given it me,
and under memorable circumstances. He