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" Dear Sir John, — As you mentioned that you
were anxious about that foolish ward of yours,
who is so determined to become a husband, I am
Samaritan enough to let you know that I am
likely enough to know something that may be
useful. You seemed annoyed about the
business, and I could not help taking this trouble to
assist you. In the mean time, I would advise
your not going to Lady Laura Fermor, as you
seemed to think of doing, until we hear
something more.

"PAULINE MANUEL."

Sir Hopkins, passing again, saw the messenger
go with the notes in his hand. He chuckled and
became two years younger on the spot. " I can
manage the Waipiti yet, though they talk of
superannuating me. You did not get much oul
of me, Miss Manuel, and I shall be ' His
Excellency' very soon!"

MONASTIC MYSTERIES.

IN the kingdom of Italy, convents have lately
been suppressed by law. In other countries,
they are encouraged; in some, simply tolerated
which is enough for them. Where they are
allowed an inch, they try to take an ell. It is
right, therefore, that the world should be
reminded that modern monasterieswhatever they
might have been in the good old timesare by
no means the retreat of every virtue. Persons
shut up in convents are at least useless to
society. A recently published narrative,*
cautious and reticent as it is respecting many
particulars, proves that, while not a few are worse
than useless, a vast multitude live on in extreme
unhappiness, when they are not cut off in the
flower of their age.

* Mr. Bentley advertises a translation, Memoirs of
Henrietta Caracciolo, which we have not seen.

Enrichetta, granddaughter of Gennaro Caracciolo,
Prince of Eorino, was born at Naples, in
the family palazzo, on the 17th of February,
1821, and was named after a nun, her paternal
aunt, one of the innumerable victims whom her
race had offered to the Order of St. Bennet.
Through the capricious treatment of her father
by the Bourbon government, her childhood was
passed partly in straitened circumstances and
partly in official splendour. At fourteen, a bright-
complexioned, well-developed girl, she had the
misfortune to fall deeply in loveif love can
fairly be called a misfortune. She tells how well
she loved, with womanly frankness. There was
a long exchange of glances and salutations from
a balcony, and, for months, nothing more. Carlo,
the beloved object, took no steps to acquaint her
parents with their mutual passion, but seemed
rather to wish to conceal it. In short, poor
Enrichetta's disillusion came only too quickly.
Carlo married another girl, because her purse was
heavier. First love thus prematurely fell to the
grounda flower blighted in the bud.

After a time, second love came with young
Domenico, a visitor at the paternal mansion.
Enrichetta said to herself that all men might not
be so base as Carlo. Domenico did love, firmly
and fervently; and Enrichetta responded with
equal earnestness. But neither in this case
could the course of true love run smooth.
Domenico's father had other " views;"
moreover, her own father, ruled by his wife, would
have nothing to say to Domenico as a son-in-law.
And there threatened to come an end of
that. This second disappointment brought on
a severe nervous attack, to a recurrence of
which the victim ever afterwards remained
subject. But was this impassioned girl a fit subject
to shut up in a nunnery?

Her father, a kind man, died; and, without
either guardian or dowry, she was left at the
mercy of, not an unjust mother-in-law, but, of
what is more heartrending, an unjust mother,
who, instead of concealing the preference she
might feel for one child above another, openly
carried out her likes and dislikes. Domenico still
continued to hope. The mother brutally
dismissed him, and arranged a match for her elder
daughter, Guiseppina. Enrichetta's godmother
was abbess of the convent of San Gregorio
Armeno.

One morning, her mother went out unaccompanied,
professing urgent business; but soon
returned, more cheerful than usual, as if the
affair had turned out satisfactorily. A few days
afterwards, the abbess's servant delivered to
Enrichetta a box of bonbons, with the news that
the chapter had unanimously voted her admission
into the convent. It sounded in her ears like
a sentence of death; the very word " convent"
was detestable. She pleaded, with tears, to be
.eft at liberty. Her mother was inexorable. She
entered within the hated walls, on the promise of
jeing taken out again at the end of two months.

The mother and daughter drove to the
convent gate. The nun whose duty it was to open
it, apprised the community, by tolling a bell,
that a victim was about to enter. The abbess
was awaiting her arrival in the lodge, and
whispered to her, in a gently imperious tone, to
thank the nuns for the favour accorded by
accepting her as their companion. The nuns
crowded round to stare, peeping over each other's
shoulders, and mounting on chairs. They
ciriticised her person in an under tone. One
thought her pretty, another ugly; one
sympathetic, another antipathetic; one held that a
mild disposition, another that obstinacy, was
marked on her countenance. Poor Enrichetta
was overcome, suffocated. She would have
preferred death.

The two months passed, and no mother
appeared to claim her child. Enrichetta might
lave been prepared for the disappointment.
Every nun in the convent asked the same ,question,
"Do you wish to take the veil?" Oil her
eplying "No," they smiled, and rejoined, "St.
Bennet will never let you slip through his
fingers." The very portress gave her to understand
he hopelessness of her case. "Patience, my
dear," she said. "With a good grace, or with
a bad grace, you will have to drink this cup."

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