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days. Job lit his daily pipe with it.' If another lover were to talk to me as you do, I should accuse him of rank affectation. I believe you feel all you say. Miss Kirke should be a proud and happy woman.”
“She cannot abide that title,” said Roy, smiling. “ And, indeed, it suits her as ill as it sits well upon Eunice."
“Is that the elder sister? I thought she was 'Una.' That would be a fitting name for the chaste beauty. I glanced down, involuntarily, for the tamed lion couchant beneath her chair, when Miss Jessie spoke it."
"She is ‘Eunice' to everybody else. They had not the same mother, and there is a difference of ten years in their ages. The first Mrs. Kirke was, I judge, a sedate pastoress, who looked well after her household and her husband's flock. Her praise is still in the churches of this region. She died when the little Eunice was at the age of five. Four years afterwards, Mr. Kirke brought to the manse a beautiful woman-city born and bred, refined, accomplished, and delicate. She fell into ill-health very soon. Bland as this climate seems to us who live so much further north, it was harsh to her. She was a South Carolinian, and her fondness for her old home grew into a longing during her residence among these mountains. Her invalidism became confirmed after the birth of her babe. In memory of the sunny bowers in which her girlhood had been passed, she gave it the fanciful-you may think fantastic-name of Jessamine."
" It is odd, but pretty, and it suits her."
“Her fondness for the vine and fashion of wearing the flower may appear to you and to others a girlish whim. In reality, they are the motherless child's tribute to the memory of the parent whom she recollects with fondest devotion, although she was but five years old at her death."
“She told me she had known' no home but this valley. The sisters were not educated in the country, I take it?"
“The elder graduated with distinction at Bethlehem. It was her mother's dying request that she should, at a suitable age, be sent to the Moravian Seminary at that place. She was thorough and conscientious in her studies, as in everything else, cultivating her talents for music and modern languages with especial diligence that, as she has told me, it might not be necessary to send little Jessie from home to school.' The younger sister has had no teachers except Eunice and their father, who is a fine classical scholar."
And a man of far more than ordinary ability, I should suppose. Why has he buried himself alive in this out-of-the-world region ?"
"Because he is essentially unworldly, I imagine. He has here ample opportunity for study, and he loves his books next to his children. Then, his attachment to the parsonage and to his people is strong. 'I was ambitious of distinction in my profession, once,' he said to me, the
other day ; 'but this was before my wife's death. It may sound like exaggerated sentiment, but I believe he means to live and die in sight of her grave. I have learned from Eunice something about his love for her, and his grief at her death.
“I have given you this sketch o the family history, that you may better comprehend what passes in the household. My lodgings are at the hotel, as are yours, but most of our time will, of course, be spent at the Parsonage. I want you to know and like them allparticularly Jessie. It may be that you can be of service to her while I am abroad."
* What does she say to that scheme?"
“I have said nothing to her about it. I dread the task !” Roy looked very grave.
“ Her father agrees with me that it is wiser to be silent on the subject until my plans are definitely laid. I would prolong the clear shining of her day while I can."
He arose, apparently anxious to dismiss the subject. “We must go ! Eunice's tea-table is ready at sunset."
He cannot trust himself to discuss this matter of their separation," said Orrin, inly, following the rapid stride of his thoughtful cousin down the mountain. "One tear from his pert Amaryllis would reverse his decision at this, the eleventh hour. Lord, what fools these lovers be!'"
The manse meadows were gained by a rustic footbridge spanning the creek which skirted these. Two young men, whom Mr. Wyllys rightly supposed to be members of the “Committee upon Orator of the Day," were waiting here to speak to Mr. Fordham, probably to solicit a copy of his address for publication, the considerate kinsman further surmised, and sauntered on to the garden, leaving the other to follow when he would. Lingering among the fragrant borders, momentarily expecting Roy to rejoin him, he lost himself in a rose labyrinth, so affluent of bloom and odour, that he did not know where he was until warned of his proximity to the oriel window by Jessie's voice. Through a crevice in the creepers, he could see her lounge set in the spacious recess, and the back of her head as she raised it to speak to some one within the room.
“Roy described him as distingué and fascinating!” she said, in an accent of chargin. “ I call him positively homely! Don't you?"
Orrin should have moved--assured as he was that he was the subject of unflattering remark. In his code, this was a reason why he should remain acquiescent and hearken for more. Perhaps others who make higher pretensions to the minor moralities would have done likewise.
"He is not handsome, certainly," returned Miss Kirke. “You are disposed to be unreasonable because your expectations were unduly raised."
“By his cousin who told me he was the most popular man in Hamilton-one of the glass-of-fashion and mould
of-form kind, you know," continued Jessie, in increasing vexation. “Am I to be blamed if I loose at least the outposts of my temper when, having expected an Adonis, I behold--"
“A gentleman!” Her sister finished the sentence. "Since he is that, dear, and Mr. Fordham's cousin, he should be safe from our criticism. At least, while he is our guest.”
There was a pause before Jessie spoke again.
“Darling Euna! are you displeased with me?" she said coaxingly. “I was cross and unladylike, I acknow
ledge. Iought not to-- I did not expect that he would be
own that I am, also," was the reply.
The elder sister approached the window as she said it; and Mr. Wyllys effected a skilful retreat.
The labyrinth had its terminus in a matted arbc ur near the churchyard fence. Sitting down in this, the subject of the recent discussion indulged him.self in a hearty but noiseless fit of laughter.
NOTABLE LIVING WOMEN AND THEIR DEEDS.
QUEEN VICTORIA. THE 'HE object of the present series of articles is to she was resolved to devote her best energies and fondest
acquaint the reader with the lives and deeds of the love. The interview was a very touching one. most celebrated women of the day. This will be a pleasant One of the earliest notices of the infant Princess, the occupation, and a profitable one as well. It is certainly future Queen of England, is contained in a letter written worth our while to hear about the lives of others, if only by Wilberforce to his friend Hannah More, on the 21st that we may gather examples for our own imitation. We of July, 1820. He says: “In consequence of a very shall confine ourselves to no special sphere: we shall civil message from the Duchess of Kent, I waited on her walk with queens in royal palaces; visit authoresses in this morning. She received me with her fine, animated their studies, and artists in their studios; stand with self- child on the floor by her side, with its playthings, of devoted nurses by the bedside of the sick and wounded; which I soon became one." The Princess spent her and listen to the sweet strains of great musicians in the childhood and early youth in sweet contentment, thinkconcert-room. There will be no lack of incident, and no ing nothing of the high duties to which she was about to lack of interest, from the beginning to the end of our be called. Indeed, until her twelfth year, she was kept notable catalogue.
entirely iguorant of the fact that the shadow of the crown And who will occupy the first place ? About that of England rested on her brow. On learning it, the there is no difficulty: loyalty demands, and personal anxieties and responsibilities attending upon royal life esteem requires, that it be given to our most gracious occurred to her mind, and she was far from overjoyed. sovereign lady Queen Victoria. A long story is made Her intellectual and physical training were attended to short by beginning at the right place, so we shall start by with the utmost care, and the Princess gave great satistelling that her Majesty was born at Kensington Palace, faction to her instructors ;- she promised to be well on the 24th of May, 1819. She was the only child of worthy of inheriting the throne of the mightiest land in the Duke of Kent and of “ Her Serene Highness Mary Europe. Louisa Victoria, daughter of the Duke of Saxe-Coburg- With studies, trips to various watering-places, and Saalfeld, widow of Heinrich Charles, Prince of Leiningen, visits to the country-seats of some of the nobility, and sister of Prince Leopold.” For some time before time flew quickly past, and we come to the year 1837, her birth, the Duke and Duchess had resided on the when the death occurred of the Queen's uncle, William Continent, but in anticipation of the event they hastened IV. It was on the 20th of June, early in the morning, home in April, being desirous that their child should be that Her Majesty received the news of her accession. " born a Briton."
Later in the day followed the scene of taking the oath of Before the “Mayflower" of Kensington, as her allegiance, when, in the words of Mr. Disraeli, "the grandmother used to call her, was a year old, she was prelates and chief men of her realm advanced to the fatherless. The Duke of Kent died on the 23rd of throne, and, kneeling before her, plighted their troth, and January, 1820. When a deputation appeared at Ken- took the sacred oath of allegiance and supremacysington Palace to present an address of condolence from allegiance to one who rules over the land the great Macethe House of Commons, the Duchess appeared in person donian could not conquer, and over a continent of which with the infant Victoria in her arms. She presented the even Columbus never dreamed : to the queen of every child to the deputed ministers, and pointed to her as the sea and of nations of every zone.” treasure, to the preservation and improvement of which On the following day, the 21st of June, the Queen
In the year
was publicly proclaimed as Alexandrina Victoria I.: since then she has abandoned the “ Alexandrina," and preferred to be known simply as “ Victoria."
On the 17th of July she went in State to the House of Lords to dissolve the Parliament; such being the constitutional usage and enactment on the demise of the Crown. She concluded her address by saying :
“I ascend the throne with a deep sense of the responsibility which is imposed upon me; but I am supported by the consciousness of my own right intentions and by my dependence upon the protection of Almighty God. It will be my care to strengthen our institutions, civil and ecclesiastical, by discreet improvement wherever improvement is required, and to do all in my power to compose and allay animosity and discord. Acting upon these principles, I shall, upon all occasions, look with confidence to the wisdom of Parliament and the affections of my people, which form the true support of the dignity of the Crown and ensure the stability of the constitution.”
The coronation took place on the 28th of June, 1838. A gorgeous procession accompanied the Queen to Westminster Abbey, and both sides of the line of march were covered with enormous multitudes, of all ranks and conditions, exultant and joyful, eager to greet their youthful sovereign.
When the Queen reached the western entrance of the Abbey, she was met by the great officers of State, the noblemen bearing the regalia, and the bishops carrying the patina, the chalice, and the Bible. It was shortly after mid-day when the grand procession began to enter the Choir. The Queen had on her royal robe of crimson velvet, furred with ermine and bordered with gold lace, and on her head was a circlet of gold. Her train was borne by eight ladies. She looked most charming, we are told, and had a very animated expression of countenance,
On her appearance in the midst of the dazzling assembly which filled the Choir, she was greeted with hearty applause from all parts of the building, and when she was proclaimed in the formula :-"Sirs,-) here present unto you Queen Victoria—the undoubted Queen of this realm ; wherefore, all you who are come this day to do your homage, are you willing to do the same?”-a burst of cheering rent the air, mingled with cries of “God save the Queen !” Still greater enthusiasm was manifested when the crown was placed on Her Majesty's head. Then followed the ceremony of doing homage, and this was marked by an incident very
characteristic of the Queen's kind heart. Lord Rollo, who was upwards of eighty, advanced to perform his homage : he stumbled and fell on the steps of the throne. Immediately Her Majesty stepped forward, and, holding out her hand, assisted the aged peer to rise. Her manner of doing this, as well as the action itself, called forth the loudly-expressed admiration of the entire assembly.
The procession on its way to the Abbey had been
imposing ; on its return it was still more so, for the Queen appeared in all the magnificence of regal state: she wore the crown, and the royal and noble personages wore their coronets. The mass of brilliants, relieved here and there by a large coloured stone, and the cap of purple velvet, was allowed to become Her Majesty uncommonly well, and to have a superb and classic effect. The rejoicings which followed the coronation were on a grand scale: it would be tedious to tell of all the banquets which were given, of the fireworks in the Green Park, and the fair in Hyde Park, of the theatres open gratuitously, the illuminations regardless of expense, the hearty good feeling of the metropolis, and the equal enthusiasm of the provinces. Before leaving the coronation we shall mention an interesting fact. The coronation of George IV. is said to have cost £243,000; that of Queen Victoria did not cost more than £70,000.
But better fortune than a crown was in store for the Queen-she was to wed him to whom she had given her heart. And here Prince Albert enters upon the scene. He was cousin to her Majesty, and the second son of Duke Ernest I. of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. 1836 he had visited England, and at his Aunt Kent's first met the Princess Victoria. The Queen's ever-watchful uncle, Leopold, King of the Belgians, had even then fixed upon Prince Albert as the best possible husband for his niece; but it was resolved to leave the young people free to follow their own inclinations. A mutual affection sprung up. All, however, did not go quite smoothly; there were doubts and uncertainties, as in all affairs of the sort, mingled, as was natural in disposing of a Queen's hand, with dynastic ambitions and diplomatic intrigues.
In the close of 1839, Prince Albert, accompanied by his brother, came again to England, actually under the impression that the engagement was broken off--at least for some years; but he played the part of a royal lover with such singular grace, that all obstacles were at once
Never willingly did he absent himself from the Queen's society and presence, and her every wish was anticipated with the alacrity of an unfeigned attachment. The Queen's position rendered it imperative that any proposal of marriage should first come from her. This was a dilemma which must appear painful to those who derive their idea on the subject from the practice of private life, and consider it the privilege and happiness of a woman to have her hand sought in marriage, instead of having to offer it herself. But where there is the will a way is easily found. The Queen became more and more charmed with her cousin, and, a week after his arrival, told her Premier, Lord Melbourne, that she had
her mind to the marriage. He made a sensible reply, saying kindly, “You will be much more comfortable, for a woman cannot stand alone for any length of time, in whatever position she may be."
In a touching letter to his grandmother, the Dowager Duchess of Gotha, Prince Albert tells of his betrothal to the Queen. The letter was written from Windsor, on
the 11th of November, 1839. "The Queen," says the Prince, “sent for me alone to her room a few days ago, and 'declared to me, in a genuine outburst of love and affection, that I had gained her whole heart, and would make her intensely happy if I would make her the sacrifice of sharing my life with her, for she said she looked on it as a sacrifice; the only thing which troubled her was, that she did not think she was worthy of me. The joyous openness of manner in which she told me this quite enchanted me, and I was quite carried away by it. She is really most good and amiable, and I am quite sure heaven has not given me into evil hands, and that we shall be happy together.
“ Since that moment, Victoria does whatever she fancies I should wish or like, and we talk together a great deal about our future life, which she promises me to make as happy as possible.”
The Queen officially announced her intended marriage, to the Privy Council on the 23rd of November. The meeting of the Council was held in Buckingham Palace, and about eighty members were present. “Precisely at two, the Queen records in her Journal, “ I went in. The room was full, but I hardly knew who was there. Lord Melbourne I saw looking kindly at me with tears in his eyes, but he was not near me. I then read my short declaration. I felt my hands shook, but I did not make one mistake. I felt most thankful and happy when it
“ Lord Lansdowne then rose, and, in the name of the Privy Council, asked that this most gracious and most welcome communication might be printed.' I then left the room, the whole thing not lasting above two or three minutes. The Duke of Cambridge came into the small library where I was standing, and wished me joy."
The news of the marriage was received in England with universal satisfaction, and the Queen's choice of a husband met with general approval. The event came off on the roth of February, 1840, at one o'clock, in the Chapel Royal. At half-past twelve the Queen left Buckingham Palace for St. James's, her mother and the Duchess of Sutherland being in the same carriage with her; and Her Majesty is careful to tell us that on that occasion she wore the sapphire brooch which the Prince had given her the day before.
It would be pleasant if we could give here an account of the arrangements and of the ceremony itself; but space forbids. We must imagine for ourselves the formation of the several processions of the bride and bridegroom, and of the Royal personages and others invited to the wedding. All went off well; the chief actors in the scene went to chapel and they returned, but on coming back the Queen had the chosen companion of her life by her side. At the palace-door her husband handed her from the carriage, and in the presence of all the Court she ascended the grand staircase leaning on her husband's arm. It would be unpardonable were we to omit to mention that at the ceremony her Majesty
wore a dress of a rich white satin, trimmed with orange flower blossoms. On her head she had a wreath of the same blossoms, over which, but not so as to conceal her face, a beautiful veil of Honiton lace was thrown. The bridesmaids were in white, with roses.
The wedding-breakfast at the Palace followed the ceremony in the chapel, with a toast to the health of the happy pair. In the afternoon the Queen and Prince left for Windsor Castle. “Our reception,” the Queen relates in her Journal," was most enthusiastic, hearty and gratifying in every way; the people quite deafening us with their cheers." "The sovereigns of this country," remarks one writer, “cannot enjoy on such an occasion the privacy which is the privilege and happiness of their subjects.”
The Queen was now wedded to the husband of her choice amid sincere and general rejoicings. “It is the fact that he is the husband of your choice," said Lord Melbourne,“ which makes your Majesty's marriage so popular; people know it is not for mere State reasons." Prince Albert proved a model husband.
He was graceful and handsome, yet without vanity. As a Prince, in spite of much misconception and misrepresentation, he did his duty nobly, never thrusting himself forward, but cheerfully lending his aid to whatever was worthy of support. For domestic life no one could have been better fitted, and to all who surrounded him he became an object of sincere attachment. The principle upon which he always acted was, to use his own words, "to sink his own individual existence in that of his wife-to aim at no power by himself, or for himself—to shun all ostentation-to assume no separate responsibility before the public; in short, to make his position entirely a part of the Queen's.” Such was his conduct in public life: in private he insisted with firmness, and at the same time gentleness, on filling his proper position as head of the family. Some busy-bodies would urge upon the Queen that, as sovereign, she must be the head of the family, as well as of the State : to these her Majesty would reply that she had solemnly engaged at the altar to "obey" as well as to "love and honour," and this sacred obligation she could consent neither to limit nor refine away,
A love of rural life and beautiful scenery, inspired by a similar taste on the part of Prince Albert, now began to be awakened in the mind of the Queen. Before her marriage she had been wretched to leave London, and only too happy to return to it again; now, it was quite the reverse. 'The solid pleasures," her Majesty records in her Journal, “ of a peaceful, quiet, yet merry life in the country, with my inestimable husband and friend, my all. in-all, are far more durable than the amusements of London, though we don't despise or dislike these sometimes."
As years went on, we are told by the Hon. C. Grey, this preference for the country on the part of the Queen grew stronger and stronger, till residence in London became positively distasteful to her, and was only made
endurable by having her beloved husband at her side to share with her and support her in the irksome duties of Court receptions and State ceremonials.
An attempt on her Majesty's life was made on the 10th of June, 1840, by a youth, about seventeen years of age, named Oxford. The Queen and the Prince were setting out on their usual afternoon drive, and were proceeding slowly up Constitution Hill, when Oxford—a little, meanlooking man-fired two pistol-shots at her. The Queen and the Prince were both uninjured, and displayed the utmost self-possession. As for the would be assassin, he was at once arrested. On being tried, he was declared insane, and doomed to incarceration for life. The sentence was not carried out to the letter, however. In 1867 he received a free pardon and release, subject only to the very proper provision that he should expatriate himself, and never again return to this country.
On the afternoon of the 21st of November, the welcome news was heard by the country of the birth of the Queen's first-born, the Princess-Royal, now CrownPrincess of Prussia. About a year later a “ London Gazette" extraordinary appeared, announcing the birth of a prince.
The heir to the throne was born on the 9th of November, Lord Mayor's Day ; in fact, he came into the world just at the very moment when the timehonoured procession was starting from the City for Westminster. On the 4th of December the Queen created her son, by Letters Patent, Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester.
In the early part of her reign the Queen was actuated, as she herself acknowledges, by strong feelings of partisanship. Among the happy consequences of her marriage may be included the gradual extinction of any such political sentiment. We shall dismiss the subject of her Majesty's connection with politics by quoting the words of an able writer, who says, "The Queen is the only person in English public life who, for nearly forty years, has been in close contact with affairs, who has been in direct relations with every successive administration; who has been familiar with the views of, and exchanged political confidences with, every statesman of eminence who has held office during her reign. The testimony of the leading men of both parties is, that these unexampled opportunities, and this wide spread experience have been wisely used; and that her acquaintance with business, and the tact that comes of uninterrupted practice in affairs, have often been of the utmost importance.
Turning from such topics, let us glance at the Queen's domestic life. That hers was a happy home, and such as an outsider might envy, let the following extract bear testimony from her Majesty's Journal on the birthday of the Princess Royal : "Albert brought in dearest little Pussy (the Princess-Royal) in such a smart white merino dress trimmed with blue, which mamma had given her, and a pretty cap, and placed her on my bed, seating himself next to her, and she was very dear and good. And as my precious, invaluable Albert sat
there, and our little Love between us, I felt quite moved with happiness and gratitude to God.”
In August, 1842, her Majesty visited Scotland for the first time, and was received by her northern subjects with unbounded enthusiasm. So great was her admiration of this romantic land, that a few years later we find the Highland mansion and domain of Balmoral selected as a royal residence.
In the autumn of 1849, the Queen visited her Irish subjects. The following year was made interesting by a visit to Belgium, and, for the sake of convenience, we may mention in this paragraph some other visits paid by her Majesty to her Continental neighbours. These wereone in 1843 to King Louis Philippe, at the Chateau d'Eu; another to Germany in 1845; a third to Paris in 1855 ; a fourth to Cherbourg, Berlin, and Potsdam in 1858, and a visit to the Princess-Royal in Prussia, in 1860.
The year 1851 was that in which the Great Exhibition was opened by the Queen-a work with which she, and especially the Prince Consort, will be for ever associated.
An extraordinary legacy is the next event in the life of her Majesty. In the autumn of 1852 an eccentric miser named John Camden Nield, died and bequeathed the whole of his vast property, estimated at £ 500,000, after deducting some trifling legacies, to Her Most Gracious Majesty, Queen Victoria. Two caveats were entered against the will, but subsequently withdrawn, and the Queen was left to take undisputed possession of the property.
Between 1852 and 1861 what have we to tell of the Queen but to record the performance of public and domestic duty ? Her care for the welfare of a large family-numbering in all four sons and five daughters --had added to it an eager anxiety for the prosperity of a realm on which the sun never sets. Such ceaseless labour probably never occupied a woman before ; and considering this, and the able manner in which the labour has been performed, we gladly know that her Majesty now enjoys a season of comparative repose.
On the 16th of March, 1861, the Queen encountered a severe domestic affliction, in the death of her mother the Duchess of Kent. Misfortunes never come singly; and in December of that year, the Prince Consoit was attacked by sickness, and expired after a short warning, The death of this estimable Prince was source of great national grief. Sorrow for his loss and deep sympathy for his royal widow were long the upmost feelings
mind. Since the death of the Prince Consort her Majesty has lived much in retirement, mourning his loss with a womanly devotion to his memory which cannot but excite sympathy in every feeling heart. She has, however, occasionally appeared in public : for example, on the occasion of the laying of the foundation stone of the Albert Hall, in 1867; at the Thanksgiving for the recovery of the Prince of Wales in 1872; and on her visit to the Victoria Park in the East End of London in 1873.