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one all-pervading idea, which left no room for
thought or any other subject.

Late in the afternoon of the second day, on
returning to my inn, I found a note addressed
to me on the chimney-piece of the coffee-
room. I hastened up-stairs, and locking
myself in my bedroom, tore open
the envelope with a beating heart. It ran as

"Miss Graham presents her compliments to Mr.
Wranglord, and, while thanking him for the honour he
has done her, must beg unreservedly to decline any
further correspondence on the subject about which he
wrote. Miss Graham is at a loss to understand what
reason can have induced Mr. Wrangford to make such
a proposition, and is sorry to find that her manner
toward him (resulting from compassion and friendly
feeling alone) has been construed in a manner so
repugnant to her feelings. In conclusion, Miss G.
feels that she has only to point out to Mr. Wrangford's
good sense the absurdity of his present proceeding,
for him to perceive at once the futility of his
desires, and to inform him (however much she may
regret the necessity that compels her) that the slight
link which has hitherto existed between them must
now be broken for ever; and that, should they ever
meet in future, they must meet as entire strangers to
each other."

I asked for my bill, and paid it; and,
having directed my carpet-bag to be sent
down to Cumberland by rail, I left the inn,
and wandered through the streets till I found
myself on the great North road, and had left
the noise and bustle of London behind me.
My intention was to walk back to Howthwaite.
I knew that intense bodily fatigue
would be the best corrective of the mental
anguish to which I was now a prey; so I
walked on and on, till even the populous
suburbs were left behind, and far and wide
the fields stretched round me, with here and
there a solitary farmhouse to break the
loneliness of the road. By this time it was
night, and the wind was beginning to rise.
Fuller and louder it rose and swelled,
triumphant through the darkness; myriads
of stars were shining brightly overhead,
obscured at times by a few swift-scudding
clouds, but never hidden for long. The great
trees swayed and groaned, and flung their
arms to and fro as they struggled with their
invisible foe: and, in the lulls of the blast,
weird noises and strange sounds came, borne
through the darkness, such as daylight never
breeds. Such a night suited well the mood
in which I then was. Nature was disconsolate,
and all things were gone wrong. It was fit
that they should be soand, if they never
came straight again, what matter?

Thoroughly wearied out, I turned, at day-break,
break into a barn, and slept for about three
hours; after which I tramped on again, till
overcome by fatigue. How many days I
journeyed thus I know not, for I took no heed
of time striving to drive away reflection with
hard walking: till, one evening at sunset,
the well-known forms ofthe hills round
Howthwaite loomed darkly before me, and I
knew that I was near home. I lingered till
the last streak of daylight had faded from
the summit of Scawfell, and the lights from
cottage windows shone like fireflies on the
hill sides. Then, footsore and weary at heart,
I paced unseen the familiar streets, and
entered my home unannounced.


FEW common things are more interesting,
or have done more mischief than the
wandering beach-stones upon the shores of
Kent. From the remotest historic periods
the shifting of the shingle has been a source
of surprise and annoyance to the inhabitants
of the south-eastern coast. Travelling beach-
stones, as they are called, have blocked up
estuaries and havens, choked up the mouths
of rivers, and ruined every Cinque-port in
succession. Romney, Rye, Hythe, and Sandwich,
have all died a Cinque-port's death
perished for want of water. Dover, the last
of the Cinque-ports, would have shared the
same fate ages ago, had not its mouth been
kept open by constant sluicing.

It is amusing to observe the choice of
difficulties offered to our notice, if we attempt to
investigate the movements of these erratic
pebbles. Old fishermen say, that "the beach
or shingle, comes and goes with the wind,"
and, of course, with them, that settles the
matter. Indeed, we also believe, that it is the
wind-wave that sends the beach-stones upon
their travels from west to east. But there
are other opinions upon this subtle point
which we will look into.

"The shingle," says one scientific observer,
"is moved by the surf, which in the heavy
south-west winds, breaks in a direction
somewhat inclined to the line of the coast, and
sends it on its travels to the eastward."

"Admitted," says another, "but this
motive power is liable to be over-rated, because
the ridges of the breaking waves shape
themselves to the form of the coast. Thus, in a
deep horse-shoe bay, for instance, the wind-
wave would, of course, infringe upon the
shore of the bay at different angles, and
move the beach in contrary directions."

Another theory is, "That the shingle is
moved in part by the tidal current taking
advantage of the disturbance caused by the
surf, and so giving the beach-stones a westerly
motion." But that is irreconcileable with
the fact, that the shingles always travel
towards the east. Here, however, the tidal
theorist steps in, and says, "That the tidal
current is the only motion which can affect
the shingle in deep, or moderately deep water,
because the motion of the wind-wave is
insensible a few feet deep." The wind-wave
theorists meet this statement by the fact,
that inasmuch as the tidal currents operate
equally in opposite directions, so the shingle,
if moved by this power, would merely flow
up and down a certain space, and not exhibit

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