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Hollyhill House. All the navvies saw her
while making the railroad, which accounts for
their obstinately refusing to work after
sundown, and drinking till past two in the morning
at the "Bull and Bagpipes." Happily, she
is laid in the Red Sea now, the Dumbledowndearians
averring that it took thirteen clergy-men
to perform the operation, and that she is
laid till "as long as oaken ash grows."
There is another ghost, by the way, who was
only laid for ten years and a day, and, as his
time is nearly up, may be expected shortly.
There is the legendwhich no true
Dumbledowndearian dare gainsayof a demon
chicken always running before you at night,
which you may fall over, twist the neck of
even, occasionally, but which still continues
to run. There is a white rabbit, with never
a head, which leaps palings in an astonishing
manner. There was "Toby Munns afore he
was drounded," who, being of a loose and
dissipated habit, met his mother (dead half-a-
dozen years before) "full butt" in the back
lane, and, going on board his barge, said to
his mate, "Bill, I'm done; " then, going up
the river to St. Katherine's Docks with a
cargo of bricks, was "drounded" accordingly.
There is the undoubtedly true legend of Jack
Cripps and the snake. How Jack Cripps
saw the snake crawl from the churchyard
into his mother's house; how it changed into
a cat, and jumped out of the window; and
how Jack Cripps thereupon went "off his
head," or stark-staring mad, and is now in
a lunatic asylum at Barnardo Heath, which
is indeed an additional confirmation of the
story. Teddy Beadle, the bargee, has seen
scores of ghosts: one, that unaccountably
sunk into the pavement close by a gas-lamp
at Woolwich; one, that struck three distinct
blows on his shoulder " as he was a smoking
his pipe aboard, going with ashes to Peckham."
Teddy Beadle is, indeed, the
hereditary ghost-seer of Dumbledowndeary. None
of his family ever "died in their bed," he says,
and he supposes he shan't. "Drounded " is
the lamentable summary of all his
ancestors' careers.


THE facts of the following narration were
communicated to me by Mr. Burton, the
head gardener at Teddesley Park, in Staffordshire.
I had previously been told that he had
been for a year or two in the service of the
Schah of Persia, which induced me to question
him concerning the motives which took him
so far from England, and the kind of life which
he led at Teheran. I was so much interested in
the details he gave me, that I made notes at
the time, which have enabled me to draw up
the following account:—

Mr. Burton is a fine-looking healthy man,
in the prime of life, whose appearance would
announce his nation all the world over. He
had completed his education as a gardener at
Knight's, when, in 1848, an application was
made to him, on behalf of the Schah of Persia,
by Colonel Sheil, the English envoy at the
court of Teheran, who proposed to Mr.
Burton that he should return to Persia with
the second Persian secretary to the embassy,
Mirza Oosan Koola, and take charge of the
Royal Gardens at Teheran, at a salary of a
hundred pounds a year, with rooms provided
for him, and an allowance of two shillings
a day for the food of himself and the native
servant whom he would find it necessary to
employ. This prospect, and the desire which
is so natural to young men, to see countries
beyond their own, led Mr. Burton to accept the
proposal. The Mirza Oosan Koola and he left
Southampton on the twenty-ninth of Sep-
tember, 1848, and went by steam to Constan-
tinople. Thence they journeyed without
accident to the capital of Persia. The seat of
government was removed to Teheran about
seventy years ago, when the Kujur dynasty
became possessed of the Persian throne.
Their faction was predominant in the North
of Persia, and they, consequently, felt more
secure in Teheran than in the ancient
southern capital. Teheran is situated in the
midst of a wide plain, from two to three
hundred miles long, which has a most dreary
appearance, being totally uncultivated, and
the soil of which is a light kind of reddish
loam, that becomes pulverised after a long
continuance of dry weather, and then rises
as great clouds of sand, sometimes even
obscuring the sun several hours in a day for
several successive days.

Bad news awaited Mr. Burton on his arrival
at Teheran. The Schah, who had commissioned
Colonel Sheil to engage an English
gardener, was dead. His successor cared little
either about gardening or his predecessor's
engagements. Colonel Sheil was in England.
Mr. Burton's heart sunk a little within him;
but, having a stout English spirit, and great
faith in the British embassy, he insisted on
a partial fulfilment of the contract. Until
this negotiation was completed, Mr. Burton
was lodged in the house of Mirza Oosan
Koola. Mr. Burton was, therefore, for a
month, a member of a Persian household
belonging to one of the upper middle class.

The usual mode of living in one house
seemed pretty nearly the same in all that fell
under the range of Mr. Burton's observation.
They get up at sunrise, when they have a
cup of coffee. The few hours in the day in
which the Persians condescend to labour in
any way, are from sunrise until seven or eight
o'clock in the morning. After that, the heat
becomes so intense (frequently one hundred
and eight or one hundred and nine degrees in
the shade) that all keep within doors, lying
about on mats in passages or rooms. At
ten they have their first substantial meal;
which consists of mutton and rice, stewed
together in a rude saucepan over a charcoal