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"Those never throve that did me harm,"
said she. "I'm alone in the world, and helpless;
the more do the Saints in Heaven hear
my prayers. Hear me, ye blessed ones! hear
me while I ask for sorrow on this bad, cruel
man. He has killed the only creature that
loved methe dumb beast that I loved. Bring
down heavy sorrow on his head for that deed,
O ye Saints! He thought that I was helpless,
because he saw me lonely and poor; but are
not the armies of Heaven for such a one as

"Come, come," said he, half-remorseful,
but not one whit afraid. "Here's a crown to
buy thee another dog. Take it and leave off
cursing! I care none for thy threats."

"Don't you?" said she, coming a step
closer, and changing her imprecatory cry for
a whisper which made the gamekeeper's lad,
following Mr. Gisborne, creep all over.
"You shall live to see the creature you love
best, and who alone loves youay, a human
creature, but as innocent and fond as my poor
dead darlingyou shall see this creature, for
whom death would be too happy, become a
terror and a loathing to all for this blood's
sake. Hear me, O holy Saints, who never
fail them that have no other help!"

She threw up her right hand, filled with
poor Mignon's life-drops; they spirted, one
or two of them, on his shooting-dress,—an
ominous sight to the follower. But the
master only laughed a little, forced, scornful
laugh, and went on to the Hall. Before he
got there, however, he took out a gold piece,
and bade the boy carry it to the old woman on
his return to the village. The lad was
"afeared," as he told me in after years; he
came to the cottage, and hovered about, not
dai'ing to enter. He peeped through the
window at last; and by the flickering
wood-flame, he saw Bridget kneeling before the
picture of our Lady of the Holy Heart, with
dead Mignon lying between her and the
Madonna. She was praying wildly, as her
outstretched arms betokened. The lad shrank
away in redoubled terror; and contented
himself with slipping the gold-piece under
the ill-fitting door. The next day it was
thrown out upon the midden; and there it
lay, no one daring to touch it.

Meanwhile Mr. Gisborne, half curious,
half uneasy, thought to lessen his
uncomfortable feelings by asking Sir Philip who
Bridget was? He could only describe her
he did not know her name. Sir Philip was
equally at a loss. But an old servant of the
Starkeys, who had resumed his livery at the
Hall on this occasiona scoundrel whom
Bridget had saved from dismissal more than '
once during her palmy days said:

"It will be the old witch, that his worship
means. She needs a ducking, if ever woman
did, does that Bridget Fitzgerald,"

"Fitzgerald!" said both the gentlemen at
once. But Sir Philip was the first to

"I must have no talk of ducking her,
Dickon. Why, she must be the very woman
poor Starkey bade me have a care of; but
when I came here last she was gone, no
one knew where. I'll go and see her
tomorrow. But mind you, sirrah, if any harm
comes to her, or any more talk of her being a
witchI've a pack of hounds at home, who
can follow the scent of a lying knave as well
as ever they followed a dog-fox; so take care
how you talk about ducking a faithful old
servant of your dead master's."

''Had she ever a daughter?" asked Mr.
Gisborne, after a while.

"I don't knowyes! I've a notion she
had; a kind of waiting-woman to Madam

"Please your worship," said humbled
Dickon, "Mistress Bridget had a daughter
one Mistress Marywho went abroad, and
has never been heard on since; and folk do
say that has crazed her mother."

Mr. Gisborne shaded his eyes with his

"I could wish she had not cursed me," he
muttered. "She may have power no one
else could."  After a while, he said aloud,
no one understanding rightly what he meant,
"Tush! it's impossible!"—and called for
claret; and he and the other gentlemen set-to
to a drinking-bout.



I WANT to say a word more about Ireland,
not argumentatively, but as an illustration.
I should have been dishonest in blinking
Skibbereen; the more so, as in all the
narratives I have heard of the social characteristics
of these appalling visitations, I could not
help being struck with their grim and minute
similitude to some features of the Irish
famine that came within my own knowledge
at the time. Some of the coincidences were
extraordinary. The patience of the people.
Their swarthiness of hue from inanition.
Their patience and meekness during
unexampled agony; and above all, their
nakedness. To be naked and a-hungered would
seem to be naturalthe hungry man selling
his clothes to buy bread; but these people,
Irish and Russian, went naked when they
had plenty of rags, unsaleable, but
warmth-containing. There seem to be certain
extreme stages of human misery, in which a
man can no longer abide his garments.
I have a curious remembrance of being
told by a relative, who was in the
famine-stricken districts in eighteen forty-seven,
that, once losing his way over a mountain,
he entered a cabin to inquire the proper
road, and there found seven people of both
sexes, children and adults, crouching round
an empty saucepan, and all as bare as
robins! The eldest girl, who volunteered to
show him the straight road was modest as

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