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        "Fare thee well, mine own true love;
        Where our flag is flying,
        I shall bear thy lock of hair,
        Faithful unto dying."

        Far away the thunder sounds:
        Swiftly speeds the lover,
        Wild and loud the days go by
        Till the strife is over.
        Red and bloody gleams the sun
        Over dead and dying,
        Sick to death upon the field
        See the lover lying!

        To a comrade dear, he cries,
        "Truest friend and nearest,
        Bear this lock of bloody hair
        To her my heart holds dearest.
        Bertha! We shall meet again
        Where the true part never,
        Bertha!" then his eyes grew dark,
        And were closed for ever.

        Home to Bertha hied the friend,
        Found her wild with weeping;
        "Bertha, was his latest word
        Ere he sank to sleeping."
        "I shall follow him full soon,
        Whom I loved so blindly;"
        Then she met his comrade's eyes,
        And she thought them kindly.

        "Comfort! comfort! do not die!
        Thou art fair and youthful!"
        Once again she met his eyes,
        And she thought them truthful.
        Smiling slily stood at hand,
        Love, the flaxen headed;
        When, for her dear Rudolf's sake,
        She his comrade wedded!


IT is not the great annual gathering of
the Royal Agricultural Society of England,
nor that of the Highland and Agricultural
Society of Scotland, that I intend to
describe. My task shall be the humbler one
of introducing the reader to the yearly
doings of a parish Agricultural Society
in the far north of Scotland, when its
members are met to exhibit their stock.
But let it not be supposed that my parish
society is an unimportant institution,
considered by itself, or in relation to its place
in the framework of British "interests."
For if we single out the three counties of
Aberdeen, Banff, and Moray, in the region
of which I have just spoken, we shall find
that the great metropolis of England draws
from thence a surprisingly large proportion
of the finest fat beeves that are week
by week sold at Islington. And it is at
the parish cattle show that those very
beeves, which will by-and-bye come up to
London at Christmas in scores and
hundreds, with glossy sides shaking with fat,
are first drawn out and pitted against each
other for the honours of the prize list.

Here, then, on a fine summer day, the
young oxen, cows, and heifers are being
driven from all quarters of the Glen, in
groups of three, four, five, six, and eight,
with here and there a refractory animal
tugged and pushed along with a rope halter
over its head. And the bulls have the
distinction of wearing each a ring in his
nose, and of having each a special attendant
to himself. They converge towards a large
open field of stunted grass, with heather
and broom about its margin. In the lower
part are sundry wooden and canvas booths,
the occupants of which profess to supply
"refreshment for man and beast," and
about these we find a miscellaneous
gathering of horses, sheep-dogs, and vehicles
of various descriptions.

The cattle have passed on a little
further, and my friend drags me forward to
see them; for, he adds, "The judging has
begun." We go on toward the upper part
of the field, which is a scene of rather
uncomfortable liveliness by reason of the
number of animals congregated there
about two hundred, I am told; and, as
every farmer endeavours to keep his own
small group separate from all the others,
the amount of shouting, bellowing, and
spasmodic running hither and thither of
men and cattle is immense. They have
just driven about a dozen animals into a
sort of double pen. These I learn are the
"two-year-old heifers," which are about to
come under the judges' inspection. The
space inside the ring is appropriated to the
cattle whose merits are under adjudication,,
the judges, and a few other official, or
privileged, persons. Hanging on by, and
outside of, the fence are a good many scores
of spectators, all deeply interested,
evidently, in the awards of the judges. These
same judges are three shrewd-looking men,
farmers or cattle-dealers, but not men of
the parish, lest their decisions should be
partial. Along with them are a rustic
clerk, to record their "findings," and two
or three men with sticks, punching about
the cattle for the convenience of the judges.
And inside the fence, too, coming and
going, are various gentlemen of consideration
in the place, one or two of them dressed
in the Highland garb. The judges seem
to do their work conscientiously. First,
they give a brief glance at the lot in
general; then they pick out and put to one
side a number of the best; next, they
compare the "points " of these, turn them
round and round for careful scrutiny, and
anon draw aside to consult together.