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inform us that the gentleman who had
accompanied us desired to know if we were ready to
go home? The position having now become
very difficult indeed, we hailed the message
with considerable satisfaction, and requested
the messenger to inform one of the chief
ladies that we wished to express our thanks
for the hospitality we had received, and to
make our adieus. Also, we begged him to
get my shawl, which had been taken off my
shoulders before we sat down to dinner, and
which did not appear to be forthcoming. Dashing
in among the women in most unceremonious
fashion, he presently returned with the shawl;
then the lilac and silver lady and another lady
came to receive our farewells, which, being
tendered and graciously received, we took our
departure and rejoined our escort at the bottom
of the stairs.

He, it appeared, had also dined, but not, as
in our case, in solitary grandeur, but with
several other guests: among whom, happily,
was a Frenchman of his acquaintance. He
had also seen the bridegroom depart in state for
the mosque. The boy looked, he told us, little
older than any European lad of the same age. He
was still in the hands of his tutor or governor,
who had given him a week's holiday to be
married in. After this remarkable vacation, he
was to return to his studies and usual mode of
life, and the bride was to remain in the harem
of her grandmother-in-law until her husband
should be of age to set up an establishment and
harem of his own.

This arrangement is common in the East,
where there is every reason to desire that a
girl shall be either secured or provided for;
superiority of age on the lady's side is
considered a matter of no importance. One
marriage of this kind was cited to me where the
bridegroom was ten and the bride twenty-eight.
As at that time of life, Eastern women already
look old, the bride must have made rather a
sorry figure when her husband came to years of
discretion and set up his harem.

It seems to be pretty generally understood
now that some of the more intelligent among
the Turks are beginning to draw comparisons
between their own customs and the European
system of treating women, and that these are
unfavourable to the former, and that the women
themselves are not always satisfied to accept
their present lot.

Halim Pasha, brother to the Viceroy, said to
a friend of mine, "Some of our women
complain that we care little for them individually,
and ask why European husbands are content
with one wife, to whom they can be fond and
faithful. But how is it possible for us to attach
ourselves seriously to one of our women? They
have nothing to win respect and regard; they
know nothing, they do nothing, they understand
nothing, they think of nothing; they are
mere childrenutterly foolish, ignorant, and
uncompanionable. We cannot love them in
your sense of the word."

True, Pasha! .But whose fault is it?
However, the first step towards remedying an
evil, is, to become conscious of its existence;
and this step is gained.

                       APRIL.

How many pipes have dittied unto thee,
     Rain-bringer, swathing the blue peaks in mist,
Whose blossom-lights are lit on wold and lea,
     Before the tempestings of March have ceast
To stir the heavens! Thy south wind comes and goes,
     And periwinkles twinkle in the grass,
        And oxlips faint amid the meadows cool:
Mayhap, the fiery-arched laburnum blows,
     Whilst, through the emerald darkness thou dost pass,
        With swallows skirring round the breezy pool.

With thee, ripe dawnings, saffron streaked with white,
     Float from the sunrise; and the happy lark,
Leaving the clover-buds to dew and night,
     Catches thy voice betwixt the light and dark.
By hooded porches, looking to the sun,
     The almond stirreth, and the wallflowers blush,
           Ascetic ivies pulse through stem and frond;
The jasmine bells, unfolding one by one,
      Take to their amber hearts a phantom flush;
           And long-haired willows whiten by the pond.

Season of broken cloud and misty heat,
      How the green lanes find echoes for thy horn,
Blown over purple moorlands, to the beat
      Of nodding marigolds in marsh and corn!
And thou hast benedictions for the birds,
      Couched in the red dead nettles, where they sit
            Choiring for seed-time; the poor robin shrills
A pipe of welcome; or, amid the herds,
      The martens chirrup greetings, as they flit
            Along the barren reaches of the hills.

Lo! as the day behind the chesnuts dies,
       And yonder cloud dissolves, half rain, half bloom,
Thy bow is bended in the weeping skies,
       Thy shadowy splendour bridges the vast gloom
'Twixt sunset and the stars. A mournful drowse
        Falls on the flockless meadowsa low swoon
              Tingles along the windless woodlands' rim;
The twilight sickens in the lampless house;
        And, merged in vapour, the half-risen moon
              Leans on the trunk├Ęd forests, vague and dim.

  HOW PROFESSOR GASTER LECTURED
                             A GHOST.

THE little French clock in the mottled walnut-
wood case that stood on the mantelpiece of the
Professor's laboratory, No. XC, Great Decoram-
street, had just chimed out midnight in a silvery
and musical way, when the Professor opened
his front door with a latch-key and burglariously
entered his own house on his early return from
an evening party.

Now, the Professor was a popular lecturer on
Food, Electricity, and other kindred subjects;
and being, moreover, a jovial, fat, clever little
man, was rather an acquisition at De Beauvoir-
town, or any other parties, for he sang a little,
played a little, danced a little, flirted a little,
and made a fool of himself a little, yet was by
no means a bore, but, on the contrary, a
decidedly useful old bachelor, and would waltz