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communicated by ticking where there are no clocks,
and correspondence prognosticated in tallow
candles. He is, in short, an enlightened
convert to the nursery creed. When he cannot
believe anything, it is quite painful to him.
The remembrance of the middle ages makes
him loathe carpets, city churches, intelligible
church music, and figures resembling
anything human, with a pious, yet entertaining
and pleasantly-expressed abhorrence.

But Mr. Hobbyhorse never tries to make
converts. He only believes; and in this
respect he has the advantage over a great
many much greater enthusiasts in the cause
of credulity. Nevertheless, chatting casually
about miracles the other day, on our expressing
our moderate, qualified, and roundly-
asserted disbelief in the whole of the post-
Apostolic works of that description, Will
pointed quietly to certain volumes lying on a
side table, laid his hand emphatically on his
breast, and bade us read.

Reverentially, and with no small eagerness,
did we approach these volumes. Most of
them were histories of our own little steam-
engine, tunnel-cutting, Exhibition-rearing isle;
telling stories of its doings even when the
excavations formed dwellings for its inhabitants,
when wolves were not confined to
"Mavor's Spelling-book," and when an ancient
Briton presented an appearance that would
have provoked liberal offerings from Baker
Street or Egyptian Hall. All the early feuds
that set kings, and priests, and barons, and
serfs (there were few people then!) by the
earsall the intrigues, cheatings, grudges,
that marked its gradual approach to
civilisation; here they were, chronicled in lively,
grotesque, quaint, and, above all, believing
language. But the miracles were the best
part of all. We wondered we had ever
wondered before, and we could not resist
transcribing a few.

On the eve of the Nativity, in a certain
town of Saxony, named Colewic, wherein was
a church sacred to the manes and rest of
Magnus the Martyr, the first mass had begun
with all due solemnity, when on a sudden
fifteen men and three women commenced
dancing in the churchyard, enlivening their
footsteps and marking the time by certain
songs, neither remarkable for the propriety of
words nor solemnity of the melody. Presbyter
Robert could not hear himself speak. In
vain he besought them to be quiet: the noise
only increased, and the service came to a dead
stand. The good priest, wound up to despair,
cursed the whole company with a wish, " that
they might go on singing for a whole year."

Morbid as may have been the passion for
dancing under which these unfortunate victims
laboured, they probably never bargained for
keeping up the amusement so long, or getting
" breathed " so thoroughly. However, they
all fell dancing and dancing, and so on throughout
the year. The son of the priest seized his
sister's arm, and tried to stop her, but tore off
her arm in the attempt : not a drop of blood
followed. Had Shylock been capable of such
a piece of surgery, he would have got his
pound of flesh in spite of Portia or the Duke.

On they went dancing and dancing. The
rain fell not upon them, nor did hunger, thirst,
or fatigue assail them; even their clothes and
shoes shared in the excitement, and refused
to wear out. First they sank into the ground
up to their knees, then to their thighs, and at
length a covering was built over them to
shield off the rain.

At the year's end this singing and dancing
ceased, and Herbert, Bishop of Cologne,
pronounced the absolution which was to free
them from what was already over, and made
an attempt to reconcile them to the offended
St. Magnus. Nevertheless, the daughter of
the priest, with the two other women, died
immediately; the rest slept three whole days
and nights; some died afterwards, and, like a
good many other malefactors, became famed
for miracles. Paralysis and trembling of the
limbs was the lingering and self-attesting
punishment of the rest.—William of Malmesbury,
book ii., chap. 10; Roger de Wendover,
A.D. 1012.

In the year of grace 1200, there came a letter
from heaven to Jerusalem, which was hung
over the altar of St. Simeon in Golgotha, and
before it the faithful prostrated themselves for
the number (usual on such occasions) of
three days and as many nights, and never
thinking of opening it until the third hour of
the third day, when the patriarch and the
archbishop devoutly opened it, and read an
awful warning, in which God denounced their
neglect of the Sabbath day, and declared that
he had hitherto spared them only out of
respect for the prayers and intercessions of
the Virgin and the holy angels. Upon this
the clergy determined to send preachers into
every land, setting forth the purport of this
letter, denouncing its threats against the
disobedient, and working miracles in
confirmation of what they preached. Among
those who distinguished themselves chiefly
in the latter respect, Eustace, the Abbot of
Haye, set out for England, and commenced
preaching in a town called Wi, near Dover.
In the neighbourhood of that place was a
spring, which the said Eustace did endow
with such redoubtable virtues, that, by its
taste alone, as of old by the pool of Bethesda,
the blind saw, the lame walked, the dumb
spake, the deaf heard, and the sick who
drank in faith, were restored to health. It
so happened that a certain woman, possessed
of, the author says, he does not know how
many devils, and mightily swollen and
distended with dropsy, did, on a certain day,
resort to Eustace for advice touching her
health, spiritual and bodily. Even as the
prophet of old spake unto Naaman, so quoth
Eustace: "Be of good heart, daughter mine,
and hie to the spring at Wi, which the Lord
hath blesses. Drink of it in faith, and be