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Amongst these presumptuous, half-educated men, there were atheists; and John, young, ignorant of the truths of Holy Writ, proud of being ranked with these soi-disant wiseacres, imbibed the pernicious doctrine, and perished.
Eschew such vain, presumptuous, ignorant men, my son, for their sun is soon set, never to rise again. South wisely says, " that men are atheistical, because they are first vicious; and question the truth of Christianity, because they hate the practice.” Such men are the transient victims of arrogance or ignorance. Eschew them, for no atheist can be a true friend or an affectionate relation. The fire is out! God's love has ceased to beam in their hearts !
All was joy with us ! Janet was looking out for a small house in the suburbs for our little family, as Mr. Cunningham had kindly promised to give my father, who was a good accountant, a situation in his publishing office ; but alas ! how often does it turn out that our best laid plans are profitless -our schemes fragile as a reed !
Poor Janet! little did I think when she said to me one morning, “ Davit, I have seen such a pretty little cottage, with a garden in front and a nice little garden behind; and you'll not guess, grape trees growing round the house. Won't mother be pleased ? I am so happy !" Little did I think, then, that a chain in my life was so soon to be broken-snapped-never to be linked again, except in the sweet associations of the past !
One short, quick, industrious year, when I had all but reached the goal of a first generous aspiration-all within my grasp—my mother with me and happy,—the old Duke, as my father was familiarly termed, and sisters, too, and then the world before me! Youth's joy-bright illusions : but how stern the reality!
Poor Janet was taken ill with an internal complaint that baffled the skill of the first physicians; and in less than three months that loving sister, that warm-hearted, pure, innocent,
A MOTHER'S DEATH.
intellectual daughter, breathing the words, “My mother!” passed into eternity!
In my arms, my son, she died. But it was not like other deaths that I have witnessed ; hers was more like a pleasing dream; and as the spirit, the light of the soul, gradually left the eye in its upward flight-in ecstacy and holding out her arms, she exclaimed, “Oh! my
mother!" I shall never forget those words, nor that look of joy! nor the effect of death upon the eye; at once bright and radiant, then the gradual opaqueness that forces the light, the soul, upwards to our Maker!
That was a blow; for adversity welds strongly the links of affection; but one as terrible awaited me !
While gazing in mournfulness upon the placid face of the playmate, or rather the little labourer of my early days; while thinking over scenes passed away never to return, I was startled by the postman's knock. I opened the door, and received an ominous bordered letter, which I tore open and read:
“ Dear David, -You have lost one of the best of mothers !" I could read no more ; but looked at the signature, by the writing that it was from my father.
My mother, too, and Janet.” Death's shaft had saved one of these loving creatures from feeling the pang of sudden separation. The summons that called the one, reached the ear of the other. Then Janet, sensible to the last! Her extended arms, her look of astonishment and joy, and then her ecstatic words—“ Oh! my mother !” And then—the eye!
How mysterious are Thy ways, O God!
When life is young, the buoyant spirit of the aspiring cannot give way to a long grief; besides, I had one cheering reflection which lightened my heart. May you have the same, my son; for you know not its value till too late—when, as many have found out, remorse takes the place of pleasing
souvenirs of the past, and the mind is filled with vain regrets, instead of the sweet, though melancholy rejoicings of a surcharged heart.
I had been a kind and dutiful son, and the promise of the fifth commandment has been amply fulfilled !"
Look to it, young man! Look to it ! Vain regrets are bad condolers of a bitter conscience !
Not long after these sad events, I received a letter from my dear old father, stating that he was on his way to London. The evening of his arrival was cold-very cold. I hastened to the vessel, leapt on board, accompanied by your friend, my old pupil, Mr. D—; shook hands with my poor old father, who was changed; so much so, that I scarcely knew him.
“Well, sir Duke, I am happy to see you. You are cold. Come along: you have not forgotten the warming influence of a stiff glass of toddy. If you had taken less, sir Duke, you would not be so cold to-night.
“Ah! Davit, Davit ! you little know what I have suffered!"
“Well, well! Let bygones be bygones. Look forward hopefully to what God reserves in the future!”
The dear "Duke," as I called him, was made comfortable, and rested that night in the sweet and tranquil slumbers which never fail to visit the good, the simple-minded, and the "pure of heart.”
Mr. Cunningham, probably to assuage the grief of my sudden loss, engaged me to adapt a work of Victor Hugo, which was popular all over the Continent. It was his “Rhine," a work of talent, full of legendary lore, and pleasing reminis
We were forestalled by a popular publisher. I advised Mr. Cunningham to publish a work that was creating a furore in Paris, the “Wandering Jew," by Eugène
A DIVIDED HOUSE.
Sue-which I would adapt to the English taste-and reduce it, so as to make a neat two-shilling volume. His shopman shook his head. Mr. C. seemed lukewarm on the matter. Bruce and Wild, listening to the idea, engaged me at once to adapt it, I received a small sum for my labour; and Bruce and Wild netted several thousands. Bohn afterwards engaged me to write the “ Novelists of France ;" and Mr. Darton several educational works.
About this time Mr. Cunningham took a partner-quarrelled ; house became divided, separation, bankruptcy; and the Mirror passed into other hands, and I was left without one of my certain literary occupations.
WHEN ONE DOOR SHUTS ANOTHER OPENS, IS THE REWARD OF
A JUST OBSERVANCE OF OUR DUTY. Walking up Catherine street, a familiar voice greeted my ear. 6. Hollo! my dear A. ;
I have been looking for you for the last three days."
“ And find me the fourth. My dear H-, I am happy to see you."
“I'll tell you. I have an offer, a good offer, to publish the Gardener's and Farmer's Journal. All gentlemen connected with it, and I have promised those gentlemen that, provided you undertake the management, I will do so, because then I may rely on success."
" Flattery, H—-; too much so; but I will see the gentlemen.” I saw Messrs. Lee, of Hammersmith, and well may Mr. Hutton have called them gentlemen ; for two more benevolent, good men, are rarely, if ever, to be met with. The publication was for a charity—got up for the benefit of the wives and families of decayed gardeners and farmers. I was engaged to manage, sub-edit, and print the journal, which I continued to do for several years.
THE LATE Right Hon. JAMES WILSON-THE HOMES OF
THE GREAT AND GOOD—PROBITY-CHOICE OF SOCIETY -A PRACTICAL MAN.
AM now about to relate a strange—an important event—one that greatly influenced your father's subsequent career- -the introduction to a great and good man.
66 You are Mr. .?"
2 “ Yes, sir.” 66 Mr. do
you could print the Economist ?” “ It does not require a thought, sir. I know it.”
" Ah! But I understand you print another paper; the Gardener's and Farmer's Journal."
“I not only print it, but I manage it, and edit the News Department.”
“How could you print my paper, having so much to do?”
“ With method and system, I could print two papers a day."
The keen eye of that great, gifted man was on me.
" I shall have hands in reserve to bring the paper out in less than a day.”
" There are three that I should like to keep."
“Well, as for that, keep them all; if they are fit for their place, I won't discharge one."