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the agencies of science to their aid, and
flash their "sentiment" along the electric
wire. The President does not attend public
or private dinners during his term of office,
unless he gives them himself; but his
Secretary of State and other secretaries and
high officials are not subjected to the same
etiquette. If invited to a public dinner
perhaps a thousand, or it may be a couple
of thousand, miles from Washingtonand
they find it inconvenient to attend they
send a sentiment, in the shape of a telegram,
to be read at the meeting to prove
that though the statesman be absent from
the company in the flesh, he is present
with them in the spirit, and sympathises
in the political object which has brought
them together, whether it be that the
United States may whip all creation, or
may simply annex Cuba or Canada.

The old convivial spirit is fast dying
out, and drinking songs are no longer
heard, except on the stage. Gentlemen do
not linger over their wine; and if they do,
they would almost as soon think of standing
upon their heads as of singing a song.
Songs are left to the ladies in the drawing-
room, and if the gentlemen take part with
them, there is as little as possible of
conviviality in their performance. The
improvement in social manners, especially as
regards the abuse of wine, is great; though
it might, perhaps, be wished that men had
become temperate in their liquor without
becoming dull and unsocial. Anything
more dull, more formal, and in the main
more truly unsocial than a large dinner
party at the present day, it is very difficult
to imagine. Our ancestors were a rougher
generation than we are; but it may well
be admitted that with all their roughness
there was sometimes a very great deal of
hearty good-humour, as well as good fellowship;
and that if they erred on the side of
over-warmth, their sons and grandsons have
gone towards the other extreme, and have
become chilly, if not positively cold, in
their social intercourse.



WE must now return to Mortlands and
John Miles.

Lady Herriesson had received no second
letter from her daughter; and Sir Andrew
had at last felt it necessary to insert an
advertisement in the Times; but of so
vague a nature that is was difficult for even
those who knew to whom it referred to
recognise Maud in the description given of
the "missing young lady."

One Saturday morning, as the curate was
leaving the school, the mistress said to

"I suppose, sir, you have heard the
news about Mary Hind?"


"She is to be married to-day, sir. Mrs.
Jones came from Bristol yesterday, and
chanced to meet her, and Mary told her
herself, and seemed surprised it wasn't
known at Mortlands, for she said she had
written to Miss Pomeroy long ago; but I
suppose the letter came after Miss Pomeroy
went, or you would have heard it, leastways—"

The good woman went on to repeat all
that Mrs. Jones had told her as to Mary's
good fortune; but the curate lent only half
an ear to her discourse. His thoughts had
shot suddenly into a side-groove, whereby
this subject connected itself with the one
which now mainly engrossed him. During
the past fortnight, nearly everything to
which he tried to turn his attention did so
connect itself. 'Liza was seriously disquieted
about her master. As she observed
to all her friends, his conduct was quite
unnatural. Whereas he was always wont to
praise her broths and bread-and-butter
puddings, he now never noticed what
victuals she set before him. If the
neighbourhood was still in a state of ferment
about Miss Pomeroy's disappearance, it
may be imagined what far deeper interest
that subject had for the curate whose love,
though he felt it to be irrational and
utterly hopeless, nothing could ever
destroy. At first, as I have said, he tried to
believe that she had taken refuge with
some friend. But why, then, this mystery?
this obstinate silence? She was of age,
and might insist upon choosing her own
residence, if any one had offered her a
home. She had not a farthing of her own:
that he knew, for she had told him so.
What course had she taken which
necessitated such a scandal as this? Why
should she be at such pains to baffle every
effort to trace her hiding-place?

The school-mistress's words, then, set
John thinking on the old subject, only, this
time with new matter for speculation. The
postmark on Maud's letter to Lady
Herriesson had been Bristol yet every inquiry
instituted there had proved fruitless. Maud,
he knew, had heard from Mary Hindat
least so she had told himonly three or