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thy hidden heart; and that childlike brow, that smiling lip, never told of the thorn whilst thou didst seem to play with the flowers.

But O! the Spirit-world! Mysterious thought! Shall soul there meeting soul remember the deeds done in the body? Shall the pardoned, the purified, meeting there the released and blessed, remember the deeds they had done against them on the day of life's fretful fevershall they recognise those whose lives in the time of their earthly sinfulness, they had helped to make bitter in hard bondage ? Shall the destroyed ones, and the repentant and pardoned finally meet; be united to those whose hearts they broke, whose graves their hands had virtually dug?

When her twin children were able to run about she liked to bring them with her alone to some wild woodland spot, and there gather fairy mosses among the druidic stones and Danish monuments that lay strewn around in the vicinity of their grand old mansion. And she would sit there building them fairy bowers, and telling them little tales, or singing them her old favourite

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songs. A child herself in mind, in innocence, in purity.

A wife and a mother, she knew nothing of life in its common and actual forms, nothing whatever of what is called the world. Maternity first taught her to love, for her love was a mother's. She married because her mother had told her to marry: and that mother had died soon afterwards, so soon that she did not know whether she had told her only child to be unhappy or happy. The simple girl had gone like a good child from its nursery to the altar, and made there a vow to‘love, honour, and obey;' and having made that vow without reasoning, she strove to fulfill it without questioning, tried to do so with the same simplicity as the heavendedicated child might try to perform the promises made for it at the sacred font.

I sometimes think, when repeating that most glorious utterance of the Church's holy rapture, the Te Deum, --if there may not be, in the rear at least, of the noble army of Martyrs, some of earth's hidden children whose martyrdom was. not that of the flesh.

“Oft in life's stillest shade reclining,
In desolation unrepining ;
Meek souls there are who little deem,
• Their daily strife an Angel's theme;'
Nor think the Cross they take so calm
Shall prove in Heaven a Martyr's palm.”

And yet she told us out there strange and pleasant tales ; and to us the evil Geni, and the good were facts; the fairies had around us their real habitations; we were quite sure that the great fungus sprang up to be their temple, and we always called a very little

little one the

the fairies' umbrella.

Around us lingered from childhood to youth, what Gibbon called the beautiful mythology of Greece and Rome. Each hollow oak was the home of the Dryad, the wood-fringed stream was haunted by its Naiad. Numa and Egeri were as matter-of-fact as Cæsar and Pompey; nor was the white cat walking upright to receive her prince a much less historic picture.

We believed everything. The Pilgrim's Progress and Robinson Crusoe were to us equally faithful biographies; and Spenser's Fairy Queen was one of our favourite histories in verse.

Yet with all our mythological lore there was one strange monster which was a mystery to us. This was our father's evil Genius—a thing whose nature was incomprehensible to us, but we knew it had haunted him half his life long-haunted him from boyhood—haunted him in Irish speech) before he was born. We imagined it must be something like the Banshee that is entailed on Irish Estates. But the Banshee only wails at the death of the proprietor of the estate, whereas this horrid thing, the very name of which brought the shade on our mother's brow, and always made our father impatiently exclaim, · Don't speak to me of anything unpleasant,' haunted him through life.

This terrible thing had chafed and fretted my father's temper ; had promised him good, and given him evil; had led him on step by step by delusive promises; it had laid its finger on our 110ther's brow, and it had blighted the rose bloom va ner cheek: our father had been heard to say that it would dog our steps also, and that Basil, his heir, might be entangled in the net it laid.

We heard the Evil Genius' name; its nature we

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knew not; but it went by the name of CHAN



Many a time did the twin children reason about this mysterious being, and at last we came to the conclusion that Chancery must be something like the Giant Despair that shut up Christian in Doubting Castle.

We had no governess in our earliest days: our mother taught us to read; and having once the key of knowledge in our possession we unlocked what treasures we liked. We seldom received any direction on this subject as a command; but sometimes heard it said in our presence that such and such books were not fit for children ;' precisely inspiring a desire to read them. On one occasion the self-punishment was perhaps proportioned to the offence of thus yielding to temptation. A parcel of books, one very severe winter, came from a circulating library. Among them was Mrs. Radcliffe's Mysteries of Udolpho, which was pronounced ‘not a fit book for children.'

Now it happened that we were allowed to be in the room when the book was read aloud by


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