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she whispered. " Be content to suffer in the
present for the gain and good of the future.
Learn that life is striving, not happiness; that
love means nobleness, not pleasure. When you
have learnt this well enough to act it, you
have extracted the elixir from the poison."

As she spoke, a heavy cloud wandering up
from the east, passed over the moon, and threw
them all into the shadow.

Margaret turned to Horace. " To-morrow,
my dear brother," she said, smiling, " the
shadow of the moonlight will have passed
away, and we shall be in the full light of
heaven. The present, Horace, with its darkness
and its silence will lead us into a blessed
future if we have but faith and hope in
ourselves, and in each other. Let us go; I have
long learnt to suffer; you are only beginning.
Lean on me, then, and I will help you; for the
task of self-denial and self-suppression is hard
when learnt alone and in silence."

She held out her hand, clasped his, and
carried it to her lips, affectionately and
reverently, adding gently—" A sister's arm
is a safe guide, Horace. Lean on it never so
hardly; it will bear your weight, and will
neither fail nor misdirect you."

"Sister," sobbed the artist, "blessed though
that name may be, one must walk over the
graves of hope and love to reach it; my feet
refuse, MargaretI cannot!"

"We will walk together, Horace, and I will
show you the graves which I have strewn
before me. Come!"


I WAS staying, last summer, in a very quiet,
primitive English country town, which, though
it requires an M.P. to represent its wants
and wishes, would scarcely seem, to judge
from the looks, manners, and habits of its
inhabitants, to have energy enough to frame
any desire which its representative could set
about fulfilling. Except on market days,
when the high street is encumbered with pigs
for sale, which unclean animals are penned
along each side of the road, leaving only space
enough for the round-frocked equestrians,
who take an interest in their inspection, to
circulateexcept, I say, on these occasions,
which occur once a month, the little town
does not indulge in animation of any description.
Think then what must have been the
feelings of myself and friends, when early
one morning we were startled by the sound
of a horn, and our attention, and that of all
the inhabitants of the one long street in which
I resided, having been secured, we listened to
the announcement of an entertainment given
forth by the lame crier, in the following manner.
But as I cannot convey the music of his
tone and accent to the minds of my readers,
I will copy for their benefit one of the papers
which he read, and which were distributed at
every house, and reclaimed after ample time
had been allowed for the perusal of the
precious document:

"Wonderful curiosities.—Ladies and Gentlemen,
I beg to inform you that I have got
several curiosities that will give the height of
satisfaction to you All. Which will be described
to you. They are Living Animals, one is a
native of South America, and the others are
natives of South Africa: the handsomest
animals you ever saw, and you will be highly
delighted with them. The one has the head
and ears of a Fox, the body of a Badger, but
more splendid, has got the. tail of a Tortoise-shell
Cat, and can use his feet equal to a
person using their hands, and they are so tame
and quiet that a child can play with them,
and not frightful to look at, but very handsome:
any person feeling dissatisfied after
for the I looking at them shall have the money
returned: the charge is one penny each, and
you can see them in the cage, or out of it:
there is a collar and chain attached to their
necks, but it is not required; it is kept for fear
of persons being timid. I have several other
curiosities, and all of them alive, and can be
handled, and are very handsome, they are
natives of Russia, and are a great treat to the
public in general. You can see them in their
cage, or out of it, at your own house. At
the low charge of one penny each. This Bill
will be called for in two hours, when the
animals will be produced if required."

The sensation in the town was immense,
when it was known that such marvels and
mysteries of Natural History were actually
at that moment within it: the market-cross
was thronged with eager listeners in blouses,
and the lame crier was interrogated by those
whose intimacy allowed of their approach to
that functionary. He, however, kept a
dignified silence as to his opinion of the animal
more splendid than a Badger, the sight of
which had paid him for his exertions in making
its fame known to his fellow citizens.

I am almost childishly fond of animals, and
capable of swallowing nearly any amount of
romance concerning them. I therefore
entreated my friends to allow the possessor of
these curiosities to exhibit before us. A smile
from my host, of rather doubtful expression,
a little disturbed my enthusiasm, as he
walked to the window, and pointed out to
his family a group which had just appeared
in sight. This consisted of a personage in a
costume more familiar than picturesque, and
more resembling that of Bill Sykes than
Robert le Diable: there was nothing heroic
certainly about him, nor was there in his
air or mien anything to indicate the bold
explorer of unknown forests, or sandy deserts,
where the footsteps of the lion lure the daring
hunterthere was, in fact, more of the
thimble-rig than the lasso in his aspect. He
lounged along by the side of a little covered
cart, drawn by a lean dog, and guided by a
ragged urchin of some eight years old. So
small was that vehicle, and so little room did