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THE LIFE BOAT.

(♦rT(4.HE longi low, barren shore of Jutland, with its ever-shifting sandhills above the water*-;lf.i> mark, and its immense range of sandbanks *=J^*^i scarcely below the surface of the waves, with its numerous currents, its rapidly-rolling waves, and its angry breakers, as the long heavy swell of the German Ocean meets its hidden reefs and shoals—woe to the unhappy vessel that finds herself drifting before the stonu towards this most deadly beach!

No one who has not wen it can form an idea of the violence of the wind and sea upon this exposed coast. The roar of the coming storm can be heard twenty-five miles away. Not only are the hulls of shipwrecked vessels broken up in a short time, but it is seldom that even an oar is thrown whole upon the shore.

On the 4th of October, in this year of grace 1860, four vessels were seen driving towards this desolate coast before <i terrific gale.

That one and all must b*j cast away, was beyond a doubt in the minds of those who watched them from the shore; and preparations were made to save the lives of the passengers and crews.

The captains of three of these four ill-fated vessels seem to have known the peculiar dangers of those seas, and took the only plan by which it was possible to save the lives of their passengers and crews. They ran their vessels boldly in as near to land as possible. By the use of the rocket apparatus ropes were thrown on board from the shore, and all came safe to land.

The fourth vessel was the Arctic, Captain Bowen, on her voyage from Hull to St. Petersburg.

In spite of all effort to keep her off the lee-shore (her cables giving way, like packthread, before the storm, and the boats being stove in), she too struck upon a hidden reef, and settled down stern-foremost in deep water, about three-quarters of a mile from land. Alns! the distance was too great to allow the use of a friendly rope. And it was utterly impossible, while the fury of the storm was at its height, to bring out any boat from the shore. The raging waves rush over the devoted ship. Thrco women and a child nro swept overboard. A lady is seen clinging to the hoops of the mainmast, till, like the rest, Biic was washed off the poop; and one gentleman, Mr. Sheridan Knowles, is said to have perished in the attempt to render them assistance. Of the survivors seventeen take refuge in the fore and five in the main-top. There they

remain clinging to the rigging through that terrible night.

With the earliest dawn they turn their anxious gaze towards the shore, from whence alone, under God, it is possible that rescue may come. But, alas! the sea still mns mountains high, and the wind still howls through the quivering shrouds. Can human courago dare in an open boat the passage of those foaming breakers? If the poor sufferers could have known what was passing on the shore their hearts would indeed have failed them. A life-boat was there, but with the exception of one man, Anton Andersen—a name to be recorded with honour—the regular crow refused to run the terrible risk, notwithstanding the offer of large rewards, and the promise of a pension to the families of any who might be lost in the attempt. They considered the danger of launching the boat and getting her through the surf too great.

But an Englishman was there, true-hearted, noble, brave. Ho knew the danger well, for he was skilled in the management of boats, and had risked his life on other occasions, but he knew what skill and courage could, with God's blessing, effect; and his heart yearned towards those two-and-twenty human beings, who all night long had bided the pelting of the pitiless

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storm, and cbmg fast to their frail refuge above the howling billows!

Thomas Earle had formerly been in business in London as a contractor. Having a few years ago met with misfortunes and become much reduced in circumstances, it had fidlcn to his lot to begin life anew upon a humbler footing, as an agent in carrying out some works in connection with the reclaiming of certain lands c*t the coast of Jutland. Naturally industrious, of simple and most inexpensive habits, he was living with his son in a mere hut, not far from the shore.

Here was the man who, by the energy of his own steadfast will, and the simple devotion of his own heart, could draw to himself the wills and hearts of others.

Another noble-hearted man was there, a Norwegian sailor, mate on board of a vessel which had been wrecked the day before, who volunteering to take the helm of the life-boat, joined with Mr. Karle in persuading those who stood around to dare the saving of the lives of others at the risk of their own. Five more volunteers came forward, and the arduous task began. After failing once and again, they at length

succeeded in forcing their way through the boiling surf, brought away from the wreck fourteen human beings, and landed them in safety.

Again, the gallant crew, with Mr. Earle maimed and bleeding, returned to the wreck, and brought off the six remaining sufferers, two having died, or been swept away during the night. Thus were twenty human beings rescued from a miserable and lingering death by the noble devotion of one man, aided by the generous co-operation of those whose courage was kindled by the fire of his daring example. But. alas! these twenty lives were purchased at a heavy sacrifice! In reaching the boat the second time, she was upset, and this " simple, kind, but lion-hearted man," was struck in the temple, and never spoke more.*

That Mr. Earle was conscious of the risk which he ran in thus rescuing his fellow man from death, appears from the fact that he would not allow his son to accompany him, and that his last words before he stepped on board were to express a hope that if

he were lost his widow and family might bo c;ired for.

To the honour of our common humanity this confidence has not been misplaced. A committee was formed to collect a fund sufficient to provide an annuity for Mrs. Earle, the principal to be divided at her death among the grandchildren, seven in number.*

This touching history may help us to realise the immense advantage of au efficient life-boat service on the sea-beat shores of our island home.

Few of our readers are probably aware of the vast number of ships wrecked annually upon our coasts, and the consequent loss of life and desolation of once happy homes. Perhaps still fewer know how noblv and successfully the crews of the iife-boats stationed at various ports and places of danger have rescued those who must otherwise have swelled the awful death list!

We learn from the last annual report of the Royal. National Life-boat Institution, that the wrecks upon our shores were in tho preceding year more numerous than in any former year in which a record has been kept.

* It appears to be uncertain, comparing the sereral • Sir Morton Peto and Mr. G. P. Bidder consented to act accounts, whether two of those who took refuge In the I as treasurers for this fund; acd contributions arc al*o rigging were swept away during tho night, or wero killed | received by Messrs. Glyn, the Union Bank, und the Cornwall Mr. Earlo, by the upsetting of the life-boat. mltteu at Lloyds.

In the single storm of the 25th and 26th October there were 133 total wrecks, besides 90 casualties, with a loss of lifo coming close upon 800. 446 perished in the Royal Charter, and 400 about five months later in the Pomoiui. The total loss of life on our shores in tho year to which the report refers, was 1,646. Of these the larger number were swept away in the darkness of tho night, beyond the reach of human succour.

On the other hand, it is consoling to find that great exertions have been made, and with great and most encouraging success, to save life. The official return of* the Board of Trade for the year showed the following

results—lives saved:—

By life-boats 291

By rocket -mortar apparatus, &c 260

By ships' own boats, shore-bouts, and

steam vessels , 1,775

By individual exertion of a meritorious

character 6

Total 2,332

It will be observed, that a very large proportion of the lives saved have been rescued by ordinary boats, the ships' own boats, and steamers. This must always of necessity be tho case, as fishing-smacks, steamers, and coasting-luggers are fortunately for tho most part near at hand; and tho boats of the wrecked vessel itself are of course tho easiest and most obvious means of escape.

But the great and invaluable blessing of a life-boat consists in the possibility it affords of saving life when the simpler means are insufficient. When the boiling surf renders it impossible to launch an ordinary boat; when the storm-lashed swell breaks over the stranded vessel so that neither steamer nor boat of the usual build could venture near her, then the life-boat with its gallant crew comes to tho rescue. To take an illustration from the report we have already quoted:

On the 30th January last, the ship Ann Mitchell, of Glasgow, was wrecked on Arklow Banks. Several fishiug-smacks attempted in vain to approach her. The steamer Rttby, bound for Bristol, laid-to for five hour3, hoping to succour tho crew; but the sea was so heavy that neither smacks nor steamer could come within hail of the wreck. The Arklow life-boat, belonging to the National Life-boat Institution, made her

appearance. She nobly ran through the breakers, and succeeded in taking off the whole crew (consisting of nine men) from the wreck.

Of the 291 lives saved by life-ooats, as recorded above, 227 owed their rescue to the life-boats of this association, which owns at this moment a noble fleet of 106 of these invaluable boats—the entire number of life-boats stationed on the shores of the United Kingdom amounting to 158, of which 80 are stationed on the east coast, 39 upon the west, 18 upon the south, and 21 on the coasts of Ireland.

The boats of the Institution are manned by about 5,000 persons. Each crew Is bound by the rules of the Society to go out once a quarter for exercise, choosing rough weather for the more complete training of the men for their arduous duties. Cork life-belts are provided for the crew, which they are obliged to wear, both in actual service, and in their training expeditions.

Great attention has been paid by the association to the perfecting of their life-boats, and an experience of thirty-six years has not been thrown away. Tho qualities required in a life-boat are — 1. Stability, i.e. the power of riding steadily over the roughest waves without upsetting. 2. Strength to resist concussion.

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3. Swiftness, that it may bo possible to make head against heavy gales and strong tides or cnrraits. 4. Capacity, that as many persons as possible may 1m? taken from a wreck in a single trip. 5. The power of discharging the water that is shipped when a sea breaks over her ; and last, though not least, tho power of self-righting.

These qualities have been attained in a marvellous perfection ; and happily by means in themselves simple, and therefore not liable to fail and get out of order in actual service. The gradual improvements that have been made are exceedingly interesting, and we may, perhaps, in a future number, give some account of the most striking inventions which have been applied so successfully to the saving of the lives of our seagoing population; but at present it will suffice to quote a single example of the power possessed by these lifeboats of recovering from apparent destruction.

On tho night of the 19th October, 1858, in a gale of wind, a small six-oared self-righting life-boat, belonging to the National Life-boat Institution, proceeded from Dungeness, through a heavy sea, managed by eight coastguard-men, to a wreck which was seen at about three-quarters of a mile from the life-boat

station. The vessel was reached soon after midnight, and after ascertaining that the wreck was deserted by her crew, the life-boat returned for the shore. For the first half mile she was rowed safely before a heavy broken sea, but in crossing a deeper channel, between two shoals, she was caught up and struck by three heavy seas in succession, the blows following so quickly ono on the other that the boat could not recover herself, and the coxswain losing all command with the rudder, she was carried away before tho sea, broached to and upset, throwing her crew into tho foaming waves. She immediately, however, self - righted, cleared herself of all water, and her anchor having fallen out when she was keel up, she was brought to by it. The crew in the meantime, having on good life-belts, floated, regained and got into the boat, cut the cable, and returned safely to the shore, not one of them even being hurt.

Had this life-boat being endowed with reason and goodwill, she could not havo behaved more suitably to tho circumstances in which she found herself! And it is indeed a cause for thankful congratulation that the brave-hearted men who undertake this noble work of rescue from a death of terror, should bo provided

with an instrument so well raited to accomplish their admirable object, with tho least possible risk to their own lives.*

THE EMIGRANT BROTHERS.

WHY THE BROTHERS EMIGRATED.
Chapter I.

^FS^UR TALE OPENS in the Highlands of jlllp Scotland.

P^jj3Pg "Now this is what I call glorious, Charley," Vc>^c*!cI) exclaimed Robert MUbank to Ins brother. 11 What a stupid bore it is to sit all day long perched on a high stool in that dull, smoky old office. I was never made for a merchant."

111 don't think I was either," replied the younger brother. "At least, I hope not. I want to go to college."

"Well I don't," said Robert. 111 should like to

* The office of the Institution, Po worthy the support of nil true-hearted Enftlishmen, and maintained entirely by voluntary contributions, is at 14, John-street, Adelphf, London.

rough it in the bush. Why, don't we feel ten times moro jolly here than we did a week ago in dingy old Litherhithe? Look np, man, at those fine old craggy hills. They dip their roots in that brawling stream below, while their bends are lost in the clouds above our heads. I could live here for ever."

"Could you?" nsked Charley. "I suspect yon would soon get tired of these bare rocks, Bob, and find the hill tops too bleak for comfort in winter. Besides, what could you do?"

"Do, Charley? Oil, never mind what I should do. Only don't give me bills of lading to copy and books to keep, I dont't care what I do. Besides, we've got something to do now. Look down that rocky glen; tbcro is a lovely trout stream; and if we can only coax a few clouds to cover the sun, wo shall have some good sport."

As he spoke, the young men began to descend the steep side of the glen, leaping, as they reared the stream, from rock to rock; and in five minutts you might have seen them throwing their grey flies into the choicest runs and whirlpools of the mountain torrent.

Gradually ascending the stream, they found the glen grow narrower, and the huge boulders more massive and rugged, until at length they came in sight of a little cascade, which Charley, in his enthusiasm, dipiified with the name of waterfall, but which is called, in Scotland, a gill.

The spot was certainly very lovely, and as the day was too bright to allow of much success in fishing, the brothers sat down upon a large table rock, listening to the pleasant melody of the falling water, watching the foam and bubbles floating past, and speculating bow long the pine tree which lay uprooted before them, one end floating uneasily upon the troubled waters, was likely to remain there.

Suddenly they heard the echoes of a horn, followed soon afterwnrds by the baying of stag-hounds, the mingling sounds ringing sharp and clear from the rocky walls of the mountain pass.

They looked up eagerly, lioping to catch sight of men or dogs; when right opposite to where they sat, but some hundred feet higher, appeared, over the cliff, the horns and head of a noble Btag, followed instantly by the body, as the splendid creature came, alas! head foremost down the precipice, and crashed into the middle of the stream. The young men sprang to their feet, rushed towards the spot, and were still gazing upon the palpitating form of the dying animal, when the baying of the staghounds, which had gradually approached nearer, suddenly ceased, and a cry of disappointment burst from tho pack, when they found that the scent, if they had followed it over the edge of the precipice, would have carried them to certain death. Indeed, it appeared afterwards, that several of the dogs would have followed the track of their prey, and been dashed to pieces, had not tho master of the hounds, at the risk of his own life, ridden close to the edge of the precipice, and flogged back tho most eager and forward of tho pack.

Presently the baying of tho hounds commenced again, uncertain and irregular, but still with a sweet chiming sound, as the echoes died away in the far recesses of the pass. A cunning hound, the leader of his fellows, had struck off at right angles to the course they had boen hitherto pursuing, and leading down the grassy slope parallel with tho glen up which our fishermen had walked an hour before, had reached the water side lower down tho vale, and then returning by the pathway they had trodden, made his way, followed at some distance by the remainder of the pack, to the foot of the precipice. But his sport was over. Some time before he reached the spot, the large limbs of tho fallen stag had ceased to quiver, and the last breath had left his body. The dog, as noble, in his own kind, as the king of the glen who lay before him, disdained to touch the dead body; and, as be stood beside it, uttered one long howl, to intimate his disgust that so fine a beast had perished otherwise than by his teeth.—[See Engraving, p. 5.]

"Bob," said Charley, as the brothers discussed, on their return to the inn, the scene they had witnessed, "I suspect, if you had been the leading hound, you would have gone pell-mell over the cliff after the stag."

"Perhaps I should, my boy," he replied, "if I had been alone; but depend upon it, if you had been beside me, you would have given me a friendly hark of warning, or perhaps a well-meant nip on the tail, that turning round to give you bite for bite, I might have been saved."

"Well," answered Charles, "I know we are very unlike each other; still we have always been good friends. You have often fought my battles, and I have sometimes kept yon out of mischief. May we always pass through life a help to each other."

"I say 1 Amen' to that, Charley. You are a good

fellow," said the warm-hearted Robert, "and, however much our tastes differ, I hope we shall never be far separated."

This may seem a somewhat serious conversation for two young men, of whom tho elder was but eighteen, and the younger sixteen, particularly on such an occasion. But Robert and Charles Milbank had some months before lost their mot her, whom they both dearly loved, and this recent trouble naturally drew them more closely together, and brought serious thoughts of life anil death more frequently to mind.

Another trial, of a different kind, now awaited them. Hitherto they had lived without anxiety, in a comfortable home, where plenty, if not luxury, reigned Fortunatelv they had been brought up to help themselves. They had been taught never to expect others to wait upon them when it was possible and easy to do without attendance. They thought nothing, upon occasion, of blacking their own shoes, saddling their own ponies, or digging their own gardens. Nay, more than this, they took charge of the hot-house, trimmed the vines, made up the fires at night, steamed the grapes, and syringed them, thinned the bunches as they advanced, enveloped them in muslin bags to keep the wasps off when they were ripe. Besides this, thev had a workshop and a complete set of carpenters' tools. Robert was the neater workmen, but Charles had more invention—at least he had more time for such pursuits; so that to construct electrical machines, make boxes, tables, chairs, and doll-houses for his sister; to make new arms for broken dolls, to mend his dear mother's work-box, to manufacture parallel rulers and other scientific instruments—all these were his constant employments in tho intervals of study.

Mr. Milbank was a merchant, and having spent many years in the new world, he had been accustomed to see men of means less dependent upon servants than English people of the same rank commonly are, and he determined to bring up his boys to a hardy and independent life.

This early training served them in after years in good stead; but at present they were ignorant of the uses to which their mechanical skill would hereafter be put. They were enjoying their holiday in the Highlauds, a pleasure which their father had granted them as a refreshment—to Robert, from the confinement and dull routine of a merchant's office, to Charles, as a healthy change from studies which he had been lately pursuing with only too much eagerness.

On the morning after the adventure related above, the brothers were unexpectedly summoned home by a letter from their father, which, from its hurried style, and urgent request that they would lose no time, foreboded some misfortune. They made their way southward as quickly as possible, and reached Litherhithe lute on tlie following evening. They found that Mr. Milbank had narrowly escaped failure. A mercantile panic in New York had ruined several of the first houses in Litherhithe, and shaken the credit of several more. Mr. Milbank was a heavy loser by two of the Litherhithe failures; and his cousin in New York, with whom his transactions were large, having stopped payment, a still heavier loss was incurred on the other sido of the water.

These severe losses made a great chango in the prospects of the young men. There was no hope now of sending Charley to college, and with a heavy heart he made up his mind to a different line of life. Mr. Milbank's business being brought within a much smaller compass, there was now no temptation to keep Robert to office life, which he hated; and it was finally agreed between father and Bons, tho sister also being taken into council, that tho two brothers should emigrate to Australia, Mr. Milbank remaining at Litherhithe, with Margaret for his housekeeper, and carrying on the small commission business which still remained to him. "Only, father," Robert said, "remember, that you must join us in Australia, and bring Maggie with you, as soon as ever we can offer you a comfortable home."

"God grant, my son," he replied, '■ that you may secure a comfortable homo for yourselves; but I think it is very doubtful whether I ever leave old England. If I am taken away before we meet again, and Maggie has not found another protector, I hope that she will join you."

These were the reasons why tho brothers emigrated.

If you feel any interest in their subsequent fortunes, I hope you will not object to take a voyage with them next month half-round tho world, and perhaps a little further. H. V. 4

Sir Edmund Turner says—" He that remembers not to keep the Christian Sabbath at the beginning of the week, will be in danger to forget before the end of tho week that ho is a Christian.

LITTLE MAY.

A SKETCH FROM THE LIFE. ft||©|IANY YEARS AGO I went to pay a visit f" vM%{\ to 'TMn(' ^'r- Benson, the clergyman of a ■ small village in one of the northern counties.

Wo had been taking a walk one fine evening in May, when, on our return, we were stopped at. almost the last cottage in the village by the request, "Please, Sir, would you be good enough to step in and see my husband's mother? She is very bad, Sir; and my husband has had her brought here because there was no one to do anything for her at home. Her last daughter married two years ago, come Christmas, and she has lived alone ever since." Mr. Benson immediately turned in, asking, as he did so, "What is the matter with her?" "Well, Sir, I think it's old age," replied Mrs. Greenwood. "She is going on to eighty, Sir, and has been a hard working woman all her life; and now she just seems to bo worn out, and to be going fast."

"I will go to her at once," he said; and, asking me to sit down and wait, for him, he went into the sick room. This was my first introduction to Mary Greenwood and her family; and while I remained with Mr. Benson, he asked me if I would go and see the old woman once or twice a week, and read and say some prayers with her.

Go with me, then, into the sick room for a few minutes, as I found it on my first visit. It was a small room on tho ground floor, with a window partly closed up, so that very little. light could enter. There were, however, two bedsteads in tho room—one at the far end; and one nearer the window, in which lay tho old woman, apparently half stupified. The fire-place was near tho head of her bed. Her bed was all I could distinguish on first entering, but a moment afterwards my eyes became accustomed to the light, or perhaps more truly to the dimness. My attention was immediately caught by a little child of four years old, seated on a low stool by the fire; for though it was the month of May, the old woman complained so much of the cold, that her kind daughter-in-law had kindled a small fire The little ono rose when she saw herself observed, and with a shy glance made n curtsey and sat down again. I said nothing, but began to speak to the old woman. It was difficult to arouse her, but at length her daughter made her understand who I was, and then left me alone with her. No, not alone, for the little one sat there still, and, as I read, her eyes were fixed upon me; then I knelt down to pray, and I saw that she rose from her stool, and knelt also.

What a sight was there! The old woman on the very brink of the grave, hardened by a careless, worldly life, with her senses so far gone that it seemed doubtful whether she had power to follow the words with head or heart; and by her side the little kneeling child, just beginning life, unhardencd—wo may almost say unstained by wilful sin. Her little hands wero put together, and perfectly still she knelt until the prayer was over, when she rose in silence, and took her seat again; and I felt that how little soever she had, with her mind, understood the prayer, she had most truly worshipped God. For two or three weeks I visited that old woman, watching for some signs of repentance, some tokens of softening, and sad at heart as tho holy words seemed to fall on an untouched henrt, if not unheeding ears. But ono bright spot was always in that room when I was there— the little ono on her low stool—tho little one on her bended knees.

It may seem strange, but I went many times before I spoke to the child, though a smile always passed between us as she gave mo one of her shy glances. There seemed something sacred about her, and I did not like to break the spell; but at length I put my hand upon her head, and said a few words to her, and she repeated to me the Lord's Prayer in her broken words. Just before I returned to my own home tho old woman died, and I saw no more of Little May, though her memory dwelt with me.

Five years after this I was once again on a visit to Mr. and Mrs. Benson. It was winter, and a damp rainy Sunday evening. Wrapped up with cloaks and shawls, however, I ventured to the evening sen-ice. Few were in tho church when I entered, and I sat down alone at one end of the front seat, which was the one usually occupied by Mrs. Benson, although there was no rail in front to lean against while kneeling, which most people prefer. I however always liked this seat, because thero was nothing in front to attract attention.

Presently the door opened, and a little child entered, walked up the church, knelt down at my side, put her hands together, and was still. I watched, and was struck by her position thus kneeling, and thought to myself " Surely that must be a sight such as angels love to look at; nay more, Jesus Christ himself must be near that little one, looking down well pleased; as near as when He tookthe child in His arms, and said,' Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.'" (St. Mark x. 14.) The child's whole manner was so reverent, so simple, and self-forgetful. She continued longer on her knees than many a grown person on entering church, though only the time it would take to say a short prayer carefully ; nnd then she rose and sat down. I could not catcli a sight of her face, covered with a brown hat—indeed I felt I should learn but a bad lesson from her, if I even tried then, or thought of other things than of the service in which we were about to engage, so I opened my Prayer Book to read a Psalm. Still I could not help seeing her Prayer Book too was open, and she seemed to be learning or repeating something to herself. The service began, and through all the responses I heard a gentle voice, and was conscious of a little figure kneeling, standing, and sitting at my side, though indeed it sat so quietly through the sermon, that I almost forgot its presence. The service was ended, and as I rose, she rose too, and now I caught a sight of rosy cheeks, and a timid glance, I knew—no, I could not be mistaken. It was no other than my Little May—the same gentle, innocent-looking little thing as ever; far from pretty, but looking good, and happy and bright. She recognised me, smiled, courtesied, and was gone.

I will ask about her, I thought. And no sooner were we once more seated by the fire in that pleasant vicarage drawing-room, than I said—

"I want to hear all you can tell me of the little girl that sat by my side this evening."

"Oh! Little May Greenwood, you mean, I am sure, said Mrs. Benson, "she always conies to that scat if there is room; she likes to bo at my side if she can. Dili not you recognise your little friend?"

"I did," I replied, "just as tho sen-ice ended. What sort of a child is she?"

"Oh! she is a good, merry little thing," said Mrs. Benson, " tho happiest, best, cliild in the school."

"Merry ; that is not what I should have fancied of her," I said.

"Oh ! but she is very merry, in a quiet way. I know she has a demure look about her, but if there is a bit of innocent fun going on May is sure to have a hand in it; if an innocent joke passes from mouth to mouth you may be sure it started witli May." j

"Aro you talking of May Greenwood?" asked Mr. Benson, just then entering the room.

"Yes, Miss N. was surprised to hear she was merry."

"Oh, yes," he continued; "she is a merry, comical little thing, with a fund of good sense into tho bargain. Her expression when any fun is going on is worth anything, I think."

"But you say she is a good child too?" I said.

"Oh, yes, a very good child. Don't you think the two can go together?"

'* Yes, indeed I do," I replied; "only her very serious, thoughtful manner in church made me rather surprised to hear that as the first characteristic given."

"That is tho beauty of her," said Mrs. Benson. "She is very serious and thoughtful with it all, at tho right time. I don't think I ever have had to speak to her for inattention, certainly not for irreverence, since she came into my class; and she always knows her lessons, and answers more practically than any child."

"How?" I asked.

"Instead of saying a thing is right, she will say we ought to doit; and instead of saying such a thing should not be done, she will say we ought not to do it; and instead of saying Christ died for man, she will say, 'He died for us!' Little May is a dear child!" .

"I must go and see her mother, and mako friends with her again," I said.

"Oh! she does not live with her mother, she is out at service," said Mrs. Benson, laughing.

"Out at service !" I exclaimed; "that littlo thing?" "Yes, she has gono to live with a young married couple, to help nurse tho first baby."

I could not help laughing at the idea of that small child being a nursemaid; and Mrs. Benson said, joking, *' You need not despise her at all, I assure you; her mistress says she is most useful, and helps her in the house as well. They have no other servant, and she is always bright and cheerful."

I did not sec much more of Little May during my visit, which was but short. Whenever I did see her, however, in church, I could not but recall tho words, "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise," (St. Matt, xxi., 16), and trust that she would indeed "keep innocency,"and ever "take heed to the tiling that is right," and that would " bring her peace at the last." And indeed I had very little fear about it. I believed that Christ Jesus would keep His little lamb in safety. M. Y.

A VISIT TO A VILLAGE EVENING

SCHOOL.

FEW DAYS AGO, I was paying a visit to a friend who lives near a small village in

shire, where the people mostly get their

living by field work. Living, asldo, in London, and seldom breathing country air, I was curious to know something of the habits and customs of countryfolk; and, among other questions, I asked my friend how village young men and boys spend their evenings — tho long, dark, cold winter evenings. Leaving work between five and six, they havo three hours at least before bed-time. I wished to know what use they made of those hours. Perhaps, I said, it may be too much to expect that they should make any use of the time between work and sleep, but to eat their supper and warm their feet at the fire. As soon as it was light in the morning, no matter what the weather might be, they were out in the fields "turniping" or "wurzelling;" or manure-carting, or shivering by the sheepfold, or keeping cows, or scaring birds: most likely they have been wet through more than once in the course of the day; probably their toes and heels are swelled, cracked and bleeding with chilblains. Cold, too, they have been inside, as well as outside; for their only dinner has been either what they took out with them in the morning, or what a little brother or sister has taken to them in the field. Their only shelter from driving sleet, and cutting north-wester, has been a leafless hedge and a muddy ditch. Considering, then, how the day has been spent, it may seem unreasonable to expect them to make a very profitable use of the evening—the only time in which many of those wearied, weather-beaten children of the soil can enjoy the comfort of a warm meal by the fireside.

"You really wish to know what use village youths and boys make of their winter evenings?" asked my friend. "Will you come with me, and see for yourself? It is a cold evening; tltereis a bitter wind, with cutting showers of sleet. The roads and lanes are ankle deep in mud; and it is pitch dark. But never mind all that. Put on your warmest coat and your stoutest boots, and face the bleak December night. Come with me, and you shall see the use that is made of a winter evening in the country." I confess I was not much disposed to leave my friend's curtained dining-room, and blazing fire,—nor to exchange slippers for thick boots, and turn out into tho cold and wet; but he would not let mo off. He insisted upon it that I should have a practical answer to my question. So, not without some groans and shivers, I wrapped myself up and followed him, not having an idea where he was going to take me. Not two yards could I tee before me, as, holding on to my friend's arm, I stumbled along his garden path. "Take care of this gate post." "Splash! what a deep puddle—I feel it over my boots." "Never mind, you shall soon go back and change; but now you are so far, you must go the whole way." About half a mile of muddy road brought us to the village school-room.

"Here wo are," said my friend: "let us shako some of the dirt from onr feet. Now lift the latch and look in, and behold with your own eyes the use to which English country lads put their winter evenings." I did as ho told me; and saw a sight that I confess took mo by surprise. There were between twenty and thirty lads and young men, of all ages from twelve to twenty—some older —leaning over the desks with copy-books before them, and pens in their great fists, hard at work at text-hand, round-hand, and running-hand, as though their week's wages depended on it. Scarcely a sound was to be heard in the room. "Who is that," I whispered to my friend, "with a black coat and white neckcloth, guiding that big fellow's red fist? He looks like a clergyman." "Looks like a clergyman; of course ho does," was the reply: "Why that's our parson to be sure. He keeps tho school." "The parson keep the school!" I said, still in a whisper. "Has not he got something better to do of evenings, than to teach villago boys to write?" "I suppose he thinks not," was my friend's answer, "or else ho would not bo here. You are pretty sure to find him here two or three evenings in most of the weeks from October to March." "But," said I, "would not a schoolmaster do the work better?" "Perhaps he might;" said my friend, "bnt schoolmasters have enough of it all day. Besides, we have no master in this little village. There is only a mistress; she comes in to help the clergyman for part of the time. In some evening schools, tradesmen, young farmers, and others, give their services. I knew an evening school which was kept by the rector, the curate, and the squire in turns, week by week. The mistress here receives a small extra payment for helping. In some places the master of the day-school keeps a night school on his own account, and charges the scholars a small sum: but masters are generally not allowed to

do so; five or six hours of school teaching in the course of the day, besides instruction of pupil teachers, is justly considered enough for an ordinary man's brain."

Now all this was new to me. I little thought I was going to a school to see the use which country lads put their evenings to. Still, I could not help thinking that a minister of the Gospel—and a gentleman too— was rather lowering himself by spending his evenings in doing a schoolmaster's work. However, I kept my thoughts to myself: for I could see that my friend had a great respect for his parson, as he called him. So I stood silent for a few minutes, and took a survey of the room and its furniture. I observed that there were plenty of candles, a good fire, and elbow room at the desks, which were so arranged that the teacher could easily pass round behind the writers, attending to each in turn without confusion. Now there was a close smell of fustian, mixed with a flavour of farmyard—altogether not agreeable—and I began to wish my friend would propose going back to his snug fireside, and a cup of warm tea; when all at once the clergyman called out, "Now! slates ready, and let us havo some dictation."

Then there was such a clattering of hobnailed boots on the brick floor; and such a drying of copybooks at tho fire, and such a rattling of slates and slate-pencils, that I felt curious to see what was coming next. Presently, they were all seated again. I do not say there was perfect silence in the room; for there was a good deal of whispering and low laugliing ; and I heard rough voices uttering such exclamations as, "Now, then, what are you artcrwith that are candle?" "You hitch a bit fudder, will yer?" "Don't keep shoving like that, stupid!" But all this was hushed when the parson began to read aloud something about a hunter's adventure with a lion, in short sentences, while tho slate-pencils rattled away at a rate that quite astonished me, considering tho hands that held them. Tho parson walked about the room all the while he was reading—looking over first one, then another—asking "How do you spell this?" "Have you got that done, Thomas?" "Now, Charles, what are you stopping for?" Presently I discovered that he had two dictation classes at work at the same time; and I was struck by observing that the easiest lesson was being given to the elder class, composed of young men of eighteen or twenty years of age. Meanwhile a third class was beginning to read with the schoolmistress; and the voices of the readers mixed so with the dictation, that it seemed to me all confusion. I was getting rather tired of it, and hinted to my friend that I had seen enough; but he told me I must stay it out; and as I knew I had no hope of finding my way alone to his house in the dark, I had no choice but to sit down by the fire, and resign myself to my fate.

In about half an hour the dictation lesson was finished; then the slates were looked over, and mistakes corrected. My friend asked leave to show mo two or three of them; and I was surprised to see how clear the writing was, and how few corrections were needed. The commonest mistakes were in littlo words, such as leaving out the h, or putting it in where it had no right to be. Even the best spellers made a point of writing is instead of his; and old was frequently written hold, when longer words were spelled quite correctly. It was clear that the boys wrote as they spoke, without thinking; and so, the commoner tho word, the more likely it was to be spelt wrongly, merely from habit.

When tho corrections were finished, a book was given to each boy; and while the third class had their turn at dictation with the mistress, the others read, tho parson all the while walking about tho room as before. I noticed that ho seldom scolded for whispering, or other signs of inattention, but went and stood for a minute near the place from which the noise came; and it always ceased immediately. Once or twice ho said, " There is too much talking," and once he did so far lose patience as to pounce upon a boy of about twelve years old, and fetch him a swinging box on the ear; that boy had been misbehaving several times, by pulling his neighbour's hair, and jogging his elbow when writing, as well as by perpetual whispering and laughing; but that box on the car kept him perfectly quiet for the rest of the evening. I observed that tho youngest were the most noisy; the elder ones behaved in an orderly manner throughout, as though they really wished to make the most of the opportunity for learning.

After the reading lesson, a few questions were asked on what had been read, and a few words given to spell: then the clergyman briefly summed up tho lesson, told one or two short anecdotes bearing upon the subject, and added a moral to it. Then slates were called for again, and sums were set. This was the hardest part of the teacher's work; for all the rules of arithmetic, from simple addition to rule of three, were going at once. Some of the scholars had to be taught how to Ciirry pounds, shillings and pence, while others needed to be reminded that six cannot be taken from four without first putting something to the four; one of the biggest fellows would write ten, with the 0 on the wrong side of the one: then a whole slateful of figures had to be looked over, to find the mistake in a very long division sum, while a troublesome rule of three sum, full of English elli and Flemish ells, persisted in coming out wrong by three farthings. As each slate was looked over and pronounced right, its owner went to the fire, or looked at the pictures in the last number of the Illustrated London News, which lay on a table in a corner of the room. Voices grew louder, there was much pushing and shoving, and clattering of feet; all order seemed at an end. But no notice was taken of it, until the last sum was looked over: then the parson's voice was heard calling for quiet; instantly all was still, and the scholars, arranging themselves at the forms and desks, kneeled down—a short prayed was offered, in which a blessing was asked upon the school; then followed the lord's Prayer, all present joining aloud; after which, they quietly departed.

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As soon as all had left the room, my friend introduced me to the clergyman. When I praised the behaviour of the boys, he said, "Yes, poor fellows; they are not bad ones on the whole. I am often surprised myself at their good conduct and willingness to learn. I had a good deal of rough work with them when first I began this evening school. Squire Freespeech used to call them my wild beasts." But by expelling a few black sheep, and quiet reasoning with the well disposed, I managed to establish order, which is very rarely if ever broken now." While ho was speaking, we heard a tremendous shout outside the door, and the sound of many feet on the road. I looked out to see the cause. The rain had ceased, the moon had risen, and the boys, so quiet a few minutes before, were now giving vent to their spirits by playing at some very noisy game, the name of which I have forgotten. "Look at them," said the clergyman; 11 you would not think they had been hard at work all the day. This is what they always do on moonlight nights after school. Some of them have two or three miles to walk home, and yet they will spend an hour running about here, as though they wanted exercise for their limbs. I often think that if 1 had spent the day as they have, I should be inclined for neither school nor play. The anxiety of those poor lads to learn, and their lightheadedness and good humour amidst their life of labour, may well put many of us to shame, who, with plenty of time and plenty of this world's goods, are idle and discontented. Depend upon it, there is good stuff in the English labourer, it' we will but take the trouble to polish it Mp before it grows too hard for our tools."

When we had reached my friend's garden gate I bide the clergyman good-night, with many thanks for the insight lie had given me into this part of tin: working of a country parish. I now perceived the Km to which village youths and boys may put their winter evenings, and I thought with pleasure how they would, under such a system, grow up to look upon their clergyman as a friend, respecting him at least as much as if he had kept his distance from them, and luvirg and trusting him far more.

WAIFS AND STRAYS.

Coi.kridge once fell in with a woman who aiked him if he knew 41 one Coleridge," and having replied that he had heard of such a person, she showered upon his name every abuse she could find in her vocabulary. "But," he says, 11 I so won her heart by my manner of listening, ami exclaiming 1 dear me,' that I relinquished the pleasure of creating a fine dramatic surprise, by not telling her that I was the man."—The Kaleidoscope.

Bishop Butlkii.—This eminent man was brought up a Dissenter, but on examining the claims of the church, he abandoned his non-conformity. Ho was born at Wantage, in Berkshire, in 1692, and received his early education at the giammar school in that town. In 1726, he published fifteen sermons, preached at the Rolls Chapel, London; and ten years later he published his celebrated work, since known as "Butler's Analogy." He died July 16, 1752. Dean Ramsay tells us that Dr. Chalmers once said to the Bishop of London: 11 I have derived greater aid from the views and reasonings of Bishop Butler than I have been able to find in the whole of our existent authorship." On another occasion ho added, "If all that has been received for the bishopricof Durham since the foundation of the see were set down as payment for "Butler's Analogy," I should esteem it a cheap purchase.

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Tins month Is so called from Janus, a heathen divinity, who was represented with two faces looking different ways: one of these was oid and signified experience, and a knowledge of the past; the other young, signifying hope, and looking forward to the future. The year originally commenced in March, but the Roman KingNuma Pompilius placed January first about 720 years before ChristIt was not until the year 1752 that the custom of beginning with March was altogether abolished in this country. Until that time it was common to put two dates during the months of January, February and part of March : thus January 1, 1721-2, meant that by the old reckoning it was in the year 1721, but by the new method it was in 1722. The ancient Saxons called January, Wolf-month, or wolf-monat, "because people were wont always in that montli to be more in danger to be devoured of wolves than in any season else of the year, for that through the extremity of cold and snow, those ravenous creatures could not find beasts sufficient to feed npon." When Christianity began to prevail, January was named Aejter-yide, that is, after Christmas. The principal religious festivals and holy days in January are two:— Jan. I, Circumcision, in commemoration of the circumcision of our Saviour when ho was eight days old, according to the law of Moses. Then it was that he received the name of Jesus, which means a Saviour. Jan. 6. Epiphany. This is a Greek word signifying appearance or manifestation, and the day has been st-t apart by the Church in honour of three tilings: first, the appearance of the star in the East to the wise men; secondly, tho descent of the Holy Ghost like a dove at the baptism of our Lord; and thirdly, the turning of water into wine at Cana of Galilee. Jan. 25. Conversion of Saint Paul. For the facts connected with this ro:narkablo event, the reader should consult the 9th and 22nd chapters of the Acts of the Apostles.

HORXINO PRAYER. — Who blusheth not to hear the birds every morning, how sweetly and solomnly they sing out their praises unto God, and is so dull himself as not to do the like? The Lord's Prayer and the Apostles' Creed, which do seal up our hearts unto the service and love of God, are daily to be repeated every morning.—St. Ambrose.

EvENnto Prayer.—When thou lookest upon the heavens, and beholdest the beauty of the stars, adoro Him that in his wisdom made them aU for thee. When the day is ended, and the night draweth on, fall down and worship Him who made both the day and the night, to give thee joy and rest.—St. Basil,

Sut Walter Scott remarks—" I have read books enough, and observed and conversed with enough of eminent and splendidly-cultivated minds too, in my time; but I assure you I have heard higher sentiments from the lips of poor, uneducated men and women, when exerting the spirit of severe, yet gentle, heroism under difficulties and afflictions, or speaking their simple thoughts as to circumstances in the lot of friends and neighbours, than I ever yet met with except in the pages of the Bible."

Wild Boars.—Among a family of wild boars I have sometimes remarked one—generally a weakling, and more helpless than the rest, for with boars as with men, the strong like to show their power—who was bnffetted and ill-treated by all his brothers and sisters. Do what he would, nothing was right; sometimes the mother, uttering a disapproving grunt, would give him a nudge to make him move more quickly, and that would be a sign for all the rest of his relations to begin showing their contempt for him too. One would push him, and then another ; for go where he might, he was sure to be in the way. It is true such poor little unfortunate was generally the most awkward in the family; but then, constant ill-treatment is enough to make anyone embarrassed and awkward,—Chamois Hunting by Charles Boner.

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