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it seemed impossible for their mistress to
school and temper them to the occasion
"the vanity of mere personal comeliness had
nearly wrecked the happiness of both of you.
Because you, Manette, were afflicted with a
mere tumour that distorted for a time that
which you seemed to cherish more than
your worldly welfareyour beautyyou sold
your worldly goods and deserted your home,
and means of subsistence, rather than the
deformity should be seen by one whom you
secretly loved. Had you no confidence in
the attractions which never fade, that you
depended solely upon those which, despite all
your efforts, will assuredly pass away?"

"Non" said Manette, lifting her eyelids
with a sort of timid courage, "He loved me
only for my facehe 'ad nevare spoken.
When he saw and loved my face, it was
comme il faut. Eh,bien! if he 'ad seen my
face when it was horrib' disfiguré, would he
not have hate me? Oui"

A pardonable impulse threw Bevil's arm
over the back of Manette's chair, as he
exclaimed
"Oh! no, no."

"You were, I must say, both to blame.
Bevil for timidity, and Manette for rashness,"
I remarked.

Manette, looked down on the prettiest
little toe in the district of St. Barnabas, as it
pointed itself to trace in outline the pattern
of the hearth-rug, and went into a long
explanation of her motives in the most delicious
broken French. She was quite alone in the
world, and the pain and hideous tumour in
her face prevented her from workingshe
saw ruin, and nothing but ruin before her.
The day her bird died, she felt so desolate,
that she determined to go to a hospital, in
order to have the operation performed. On
recovering, if she had been much disfigured,
she intended never to see Bevil more. She had
not courage to bear the disappointment which
he might have inflicted, by the altered
sentiments she anticipated in her lover, in
consequence of her altered appearance; and she
preferred the certainty of trying to forget
him. If she were perfectly cured, she
intended again to return to her old lodging,
and by hard work to regain her furniture.

The end of this, like most other romances,
was marriage. With marriage, as is well
known, all mysteries vanish. Manette's story
was this: Her father was a political refugee
from the storm of 1848; he had been a
staunch Orleanist Deputy in the French
Chamber, and had to fly, with his daughter,
for his life. In England he taught his native
tongue as a means of livelihood, till overtaken
by illness. Then Manette practised an
accomplishment she was proficient in, with so
much success that she supported her father
till his death. She knew the time would
come when the family property they possessed
near Bordeaux would be restored, and she
did not wish to let her situation be known,
especially to the unhappy family at
Claremont. Hence, she kept herself a recluse
till the terrible disappointment drove her to
the hospital.

I was not allowed the honour of officiating,
the minister of the French Protestant Chapel
having been preferred. Of course I was
obliged to remove to another lodging.

Nor did the Bevils stay long in Peppermint
Place. Their united talents in the
decorative arts did not long remain hidden.
They removed to a fine house near Cavendish
Square, and worked for the first nobility.
A label in the window tells you, that there
"They speak French."

Passing the shop the other day, I was
surprised to find another name over the door.
The owner of it told me that Mr. Bevil had
gone to live in France, in order to
superintend his wife's estate on the Garonne. It
appeared, then, that my piquant Silhouette
had regained her patrimony. The next
holiday I get I shall certainly pay them a
visit.

BACK STREET CONSERVATORIES.

In threading the mazes of squalor in the
purlieus of Whitechapel or Seven Dials in
London; in the back settlements of
Manchester, Liverpool, and Dublin; or the
"wynds" of the Cowgate and Canongate;
where every sense is offended; where it is
impossible to anticipate improvement in the
moral, while the physical condition of the
denizens is low and comfortless,—the sight
of a flower on a window-sill imparts a gleam
of hope and of respect. It redeems the
surrounding debasement. You feel that
however hard the toil and poor the sustenance
of the cultivator, the higher faculties of enjoyment
and of taste have not been ground
away.

The cockney's love of the country and of
what reminds him of the fields, may continue
the subject of the mild and simpering jest;
but it is one of the most pleasing traits of his
character. That miniature fence and five-
barred gate with the road-lamp suspended
over it, which forms the boundary of his
flower-pots and mignonette box outside his
window, is not a thing to be laughed at, so
much as to descry good qualities from. Its
owner will in all probability be found more
thrifty, better conducted, more self-reliant,
and addicted to less expensive and debasing
pleasures than most of his neighbours.

The very difficulty of rearing the tenderest
offsprings of Nature in unwholesome
atmospheres shows, where moderate success is
attained, a degree of care and perseverance,
unknown to those who have not tried the
experiment. We may see, by dry leafless
sticks,—all that is left of once flourishing
myrtlesby the mortal remains of rhododendrons,
or at best by consumptive geraniums
struggling against darkness, and a "foul and

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