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THE TIMES PHILADELPHIA, SUNDAY MORNING, DECEMBER 21, 1884. THE BLUE LADY BY FLORENCE MARRY ATT. A vfcdtor for the Right Bererend the Lord bishop f Gorhanibury. The Bishop is seated in his study, puzzling his b - aina how best to settle certain clerical disputes that have been submitted for his arbitration. He iii a spare little man, dressed in a long black coat bbd gaiters, with very white hair and a nose like a chilblain a little man indeed, ot so frost; an appearance that he looks as If he had been expressly got up to ornament a Twelfth cake. But the frostiness is all on the outside. His lordship's heart is in the right place and brimming otct with kindly feeling for his fellow - ereatures. " Who is It, Matthews T he demands of the dignified creature who has been kind enough to bring the intelligence to him. ' Mr. Ryle, my lord." " Oh, show Sir. Byle in, show him In at onee," replies the Bishop, with sudden interest, for Mr. Bylo Is a wealthy landowner in the dio:ese of tiorhambury a munificent man, moreover, who spends his money liberally on charities for the good of the county, a friend and neighbor whom even the Bishop of Gorhambury cannot afford to despise. In another moment Mr. Byle has entered the room and is shaking hands with its Right Bever - end occupant. Ho is a stout, florid, genial - looking fellow, also dressed in gaiters, but of o,uite a different cut to those of the Bishop, and the splashed condition of his velveteen suit, no les than the erop he carries in his hand, show that he has ridden for some miles through the muddy lanes that lead to the episcopal residence. " Well, Mr. Byle, and what brings you out this wet morning ?" demands the little Bit - hop, when t hey have shaken bands. " Business, my lord, business 1" replies the uther, with a twinkle in his eye ; " I have come to ask a favor of you on behalf of a friend of mine." The Kight Reverend screws up his little chil - blaiuy nose and laughs. "A favor! Well, Mr. Byle, If there is anything I can do for a friend of yours that you cannot do for him yourself you may command me. But I am afraid substantial benefits are more in your line than mine." " It is not a beenerit, but a benefice I come to ask at your lordship's hands. The fact is, my friend Darrell, an excellent fellow first - class man at Cambridge, and been working like a horse ever since has suddenly conceived an ardent desire for matrimony. They all do it, you know, my lord, sooner or later 1 The shepherd's crook is all very well for a whilo, but it stands no chance against a four - post uetisteau. The littlo Bishop chuckles softly to himself. (In nlso commenced Hfo with tlio intention of dedicating it to the good of suffering humanity, but there is a littlo Bishopcss and more than one episcopal olive shoot in the upper story, that look as if his thoughts had, at some time or othor, wandered sadly out of the beaten track. " Yes," he admits, after a judicious pause ; ' it is certainly true that a helpmeet has a wonderful UJK.CI in awo'jteiuuK mo wi Mr. 1!vl l. - mirhs aloud. " So my friend Hugh Darrell thinks, and ho has found the helpmeet if he had only the means of marrying her. But he is half starving by himself somewhere down at the East End of London, and it is useless trying to do a division sum with nothing but naughts. So I have como to you, my lord, to see if you can assist mo. Is there no euro in this big diocese of Gorhambury into which you could pop my friend and his Wue anu letiuem uegiu a kisiui - ui mc LOo - mui i The llishon knit his brows. " How sorrv I am." ho replies. " to be obliged to say 'No.' But I havo really nothing to oiler vou nothing ! except, Indeed, tho curacy oi Sareelett, and that Mr. Darrell would not thank mo for. Indeed, I am just considering how I can unite it with that ot myne." " But why? What objection is there to Sareelett?" " Have vou not heard?" " Indeed no 1 These parish disputes and scandals are not at all in my lino." The Bishop glances around to see if tho door is closed and lowers his voice. . " Wo don't like to speak of these things," ho says, mysteriously, " but I am afraid this story has been too mueii taiKeu aoout to ue a secret,. Have you not heard tho reason that Mr. Sheepshanks left Sareelett?" " Not a word of it, my lord. I did not even know he had gone till you told me." " He could not stay there, Mi'. Byle; no one will remain in that narsonage after a few months' trial. I have boon bishop of this diocese now for ten years and during that time I have put as many men into the cure of Sareelett." " But what's tho matter with it?" demands Mr. Byle again. led I" whisnerod the Bishop. His visitor bursts into a loud and unseemly laugh. " Is that. all. mv lord? Well. then, give Darrell tho chance of exercising tho ghost 1 He is the man to do it, if anyone can. He is not a pale - faced, whito - livered creature like poor Sheepshanks, who would tremble at tho falling of a leaf, but a stout - hearted, muscular man, with the wisdom of a serpent and tho courage of a lion. Ho 11 clear Sareelett or its gnosis, i warrant von. and vou'll never hear another word about them after he has taken up his residence there. " It is all verv well to lauch at such things, Mr. Byle, but do you think I should be justified in allowing him to accept the cure? Itomem - ber Sheepshanks is not the only one who has found life impossible at Sareelett. Everyone lias told the same tale and given up his means oi subsistence sooner than remain there. I could not justify it to my conscience to install another man in that parsonage without tolling him the troth." " Let us toll it to him then," cries Mr. Byle. ' I know mv friend better than you do and an obstacle in his way will only make him the more eager to tight anu ovorcome it. " Yon can do as vou choose in the matter. Mr, Byle. The cure is vacant and Mr. Darrell is welcome to it, on condition that you fully explain its disadvantages. The parsonage is a charming old house and the stipend is four hundred a year. But these facts only prove how much its former holders must have been annoyed before they consented to rosign so good a curacy. " Dan - ell will not resiim it." says Mr. Kyle, confidently. " I will mako out the case to him as black as I can and in another month you will see him and his pretty littlo wife as happy as two birds at Sareelett. And now all I have to do is to thank you cordially, my lord, for your kindness in the matter." " I hone vou mav see cause to thank mo as cor dially three months hence," replies tho little Bishop, with a perturbed countenance, whieh only causes the irreverent and unbelieving Byle to break out laughing afresh. And his ridicule seems at first to bo justifiod. Hugh Darrell is as readv as himself to pooh - pooh the idea of so paltry a thing as a ghost even could it exist Having tne power to oust nun irom a curacy mat he is to share with lovely Bessie Lympton ; and his gratitudo both to his friend and the Bishop of Gorhambury is in proportion to his anticipation of coming matrimonial bliss. Only, ho says, as he parts with Byle who has made a journey to London to convey tne gooa news to mm " I think. Derhaps. that, all things considered. it will be as well to keep this story from Bessie's ears, Kyle, feme's an awiuny ciever gin, you know Dluckv and full of common sense : still. women are more timid and suporstitious than men and this idea of a ghost to be looked out for might mar tho pleasure of our honoymoon. So wo will keep it to ourselves for the present and it will go hard with me if the first time it appears in Sareelett parsonage after I am installed there 1 cion t nil it sucn a cracK over me ueau. as win transform it into a ghost in earnest." Ho is brimming over with happiness at his un expected good toitune, tms merry iiugn uarreu. He has no thought but for his pretty Bessie and his four hundred a - vear. and a few weeks after wards he goes up to the altar with as firm a stop as ever bndegroom bore and signs himself away for life as cheerfully as if he were merely putting his hand to a receipt for five shillings. Everyone is contented and satisfied, and before long the villagers of Sareelett hear that their new parson has arrived and taken up his residence in the haunted houso. Of course the furniture is of the plainest and most modest description, al though good Mr. Byle has sent many a pretty ornament and useful article over to Sareelett. But Mr. and Mrs. Darrell are in the seventh heaven as they arrange their various possessions, and Hugh varies the monotony of labor with unclerical kisses. - Their first difficulty arises on the question of servants and Bessie cannot imagine why none of the rosy - cheeked girls of the village will consent to be her housemaid. However, she has a useful married sister in London, whom she makes a - referee on all domestic matters and who soon dispatches her a couple of servants procured Irom tne registry omce in me next street. Then all eoes merrv as a marriage bell. The little household gets into perfect working order. The Eev. Hugh Darrell has become a first - class favorite with his parishioners and Bessie has but one complaint to make, that the village people take up his time so fully he has hardly a moment to bestow on herself that is, until his afternoon rounds are concluded and the delightful tea - time comes, when she can bring him his slioners and his louncins coat and sit at his feet to hear all that he has to tell her of the events of the day. But one morning at breakfast the Eeverend Hugh proposes to his wife that they shall take a ramoio togetnor. "The summer is nearly over." he says. " and we shall not have many more opportunities of spending tne day out oi ooors. j.niH morning, tnf a wnnan T am froo T,At. wallr OWN t - O Gorhambury, Bessie, and explore the beauties of tne catnoorai." Bessie's face falls. " How tiresome." she says, " that it should have happened so, but I have engaged Mrs. Brown to come to - day to alter my winter dresses and if I do not superintend her h will not Aa a aauter of the work. I put her oft if I would, w DM scaa i uo r . - Kewr mind," replies her husband, cheer - folly ; the dres is of the more importance of tho two and it ia right you should attend to it. I will write my Sunday sermon Instead and wo will put off oar Utile Jaunt to the end of the week." So wying he rise from the table, kisses his wife and walks into his study. As he Is writing bis sermon, However, an hoar afterwards and raises his eyes mechanically to look for ideas among the roses In tne garden ne is rather surprised to see Mrs. Darrell going down the graveled path tosrar I the gate. She is attired in a blue drew whieh he has not seen before, but he admirr - s its shape and fashion and thinks how well it becomes her, as Bessie goes steadily through the garden and oat upon the Tillage road, let ha rannot help wondering where Mrs. itrown can on ana wny n wiie umi n.t. t. - M him Khe h. - .ii broken her appointment. The incident, trifling as it is, disturbs him, and he dues not make much way with his sermon during the rest of the morning. And when he meets his wife at the early dinner lame nis nr words revert to the subject. " Why didn't you tell me, my dear, that yon had changed your mind aimut going out this morning? 1 should have liked to accompany you." " I have not been out," says Bessie, Indifferently. 'Mot Jn out? Why, I saw you gowitn my own eyes." " Nonsense, Hugh. I have been op stairs the whole morning, working with Mrs. Brown. I have had no time for walking, worse iuck i it is quite a penance to be kept in such a lovely day." Hugh Darrell regards his wife with the utmost astonishment. " My dear, vou must have forgotten. Do you think I am blind? I tell you I saw you leave the house, and I can tell you what you wore into the bargain. A blue dress " I haven't a blue dress in my possession." cries Bessie, in a tone of annoyance. " and do you think I would tell a falsehood for sucn a trifle? I repeat, Hugh, I have not been out this morning." "It is very strange," replies her husband; " who can it have been, then? I made sure it was you." But inquire as he will, he can hear no further tidings of the lady in blue, and an uncomfortable suspicion that his wifo has, for some reason or other, deceived him remains on his mind. A few days afterwards, however, Mrs. Darrell, having a question to ask her husband, steals down stairs with tne view oi Knot - King at nis study door. As sho comes in view of it she sees the figure of a woman dressed in blue standing on the threshold, who, as she catches eight of her, enters tho study door and disappears. " That must be the lady whom Hugh mistook for me," she thinks to herself ; " but she is not a bit like me, in figure or style, and I am sure he will never catch me wearing such a hideous blue dress. I wonder what her face is like and what sho can want to see Hugh for?" Bessie is too sensiblo to be suspicious or jealous, so she goes down to her kitchen for half an hour, and at tho end of that time returns, and, gaining admittance to her husband's study, finds that he is alone. " Where is tho lady?" she asks, inquisitively, " and what dkl she want with you?" " What lady?" demands Hugh, looking up from his writing. " The ludy in blue, who was here half an hour ago." " There has been no lady hero, Bessie." " Oh, Hugh, what a story ! I watched her go into your study, with a hideous old - fashioned dress on." " What was she like, Bessie, young or old?" " I'm sure I don't know. I only saw her back. But she came in here." " That I'll swear she didn't. No one has entered this room but yourself." " I can't see the good of denying it," pouts Bessie. " Ono would think there was something wrong in the matter to hear tho way you go on." " My dear, you cannot meau what you say. You know I would not decoive you. But wherever your lady friend went it was not into my study." " 1 tell you I saw her," cries Bessio, " and you are not iiifaliibio, you know, Hugh. You do - clared you had 6een me in the garden last Tuesday, when I had been up stairs with Mrs. Brown all" tho time, and now I believe it was this lady you saw, because of her blue dress." At this reminder Mr. Darrell looks visibly - disturbed. What was the story Mr. Byle told him and they had both laughed at, about some apparition at tho parsonago, and was it possible that this phantom in blue.whieh hail appeared to both Bessie and himself, had anything to do with it? A chilly feeling seems to creep down his back as he reflects upon the possibility of such a thing, notwithstanding his serpent brain and lion heart. And ho doos not know whether to tell his wife the tnith or to leave her to copo with her suspicions as she best may. But as he is deliberating with himself tho cook appears in the passage and approaches the open study door. " Hearing the mistress upstairs, sir, I make bold to say a few words to you. I don't know tho way as they go on in tho country, but as a London woman I consider it's a tempting cf Providence to leave a Christian house all on the latch, as this ho." " Why, cook 1 What on earth do you moan?" says Mrs. Darrell. " Why, ma'am, there isn't a door as fastens, not to say properly ; and 'Liza and me have been frightened out of our wits more than once since coming here by strangers hanging about the premises." " You need be under no alarm, cook," interposes her mastor. " No one in Scareelott would come up to tho parsonage with a dishonest intention, and I don't suppose thore is a house in the village that is bolted at night; so I should not like to be the first to set an example of distrust." " Well, that must bo as you choose, sir," grumbles the woman ; " but 'taint pleasant to havo strangers a - eoming and going at all times." " What strangers, cook? What do you mean?" repeats Mi's. Darrell. " Well, ma'am, there's a woman a lady I 'sposo she calls herself always a - prying and peeping about the place. Wherever we go, 'Liza and me, we're pretty sure to eomo across her blue back, peering into a cupboard or a door." "Her blue back ! Do you mean to say she wears a blue gown?" "Yes, ma'am, an old - fashioned concern of twenty years back. I guess she's some prying old maid out of Sareelett ; but she don't pry into my pantry, and that I'll tell her before she's many days oldor." " I know who you mean, cook. I have seen her, too, and so has the master that is, her back. But what is her face like?" ' I can't tell you that, ma'am. I've only seen her back and her ugly blue gown." "How strange! and so have wo. Oh, Hugh! who can sho be? This must be inquired into." The look of alarm in his wife's eyes makes the husband decide that honesty will be the best policy. " Como with me, my darling, nud we will talk the matter over together. And as for you, cook, I will see that proper bolts and bars are placed upon the outer doors, so that Eliza and you may sleep in peace for the future." He draws his wife within tho study as he speaks and then and thore makes a clean breast of all that Mr. Byle told him. Ho is vory uncertain how Bessie will take his intelligence, but he tries to soften it by reminding her that (except for tho parsonage being haunted) they might never havo been married to each othor. "I feared the shadow it might cast upon our first married days, my darling, but I hardly believed that it was true and I hoped if it wore so that my love might have the power to remedy the evil. You trust in God, Bessie, and you trust in me. Will Dot these two trusts human and divine help you to cast out your natural dread of the supernatural?" Ho is terribly afraid of the effect his words may have upon her, but to his delight sho seems as fearless as himself. " A ghost, Hugh 1" sho exclaims, with a rapidly changing color. "Do you really think it is a ghost that we havo seen? How very strange 1 But do not bo anxious about me. I am not in tho least afraid of it. Why should I be? Poor thing I Next time sho comes I will speak to her see it l do not, and ask ner what sue wants in our beautiful parsonage." Even as she sneaks the evening shadows seem to gather in tho little study, and through them gleams the blue dress ot the phantom woman. " Soe, thore she is 1" cries Bessie, clinging to her husband. " How strange and weird it seems that sho should stand thero, yot never show her face. Are you afraid of us? she continues, ad dressing their ghostly visitant; "you need not be. We are your friends. Show us your face ; tell us if we can serve you by our sympathy or our prayers, and we will do all in our power to give you rest." But the only answer she receives is conveyed by a backward waving of the phantom hand as the spirit melts into thin air. " Let me go after her," says Bossie, struggling in the clasp that would detain her. " No, dearest ; do nothing rash," replies Hugh Darrell. " I am thankful beyond measure to find how little this story has affected you, but there is no necessity for you to court the mys - tory that surrounds us. Let us hope it may die out as it nas arisen." But the parson's hope is not realized, The lady with the blue dress is seen oftener than ever after that day, and the occupants both of the kitchen and drawing room become so familiar with her appearance as to mind her no more than if she had been one of themselves. They meet her everywhere ; up stairs and down stairs her blue back goes before them, and the servants, discovering at last that she is an apparition, make almost as much fun out of it as thoir mistress. Yet they never see her face. They know exactly how her dress is made and how her hair is worn, but no one has had the good or ill fortune to view her features. It has become a regular custom to follow the phantom and banter her on her modesty respecting her charms: but no jesting has induced her to turn and look at hor pursuers, until one day, as Mr. and Mrs. Darrell are down stairs together, a fearful scream calls them to the upper story, where they find their housemaid, Eliza, foaming on the ground in a fit. Restoratives are freely applied, and as soon as the woman has recovered her consciousness she is eagerly questioned as to the cause of her illness. " Oh 1 ma'am," she exclaims, " I have seen the Blue Lady and I must loave you at once. I can't stoD in this house another bight." " What nonsense, Eliza I Why, you have seen the Blue Lady a often as vou have seen me. Why should you be frightened of her now" Oh ! but I have km her faee, ma'am. Iwae turning down your bed, when she earne rSusd the other side and looked at me ; and I wouldn't sleep undr th is roof another night not for all the wealth of the Indies." "Yon aaw her face V cry her listeners, edmul - taneously. " What was it like?" " Dont ask me, sir I Dont ask me, ma'am, not for the love of heaven r srreama the housemaid, as she goes off in another fit. Mr. and Mrs. Darrell are very much annoyed, but they attribute the girl's fear to her illness rather than to the phantom with which she is so familiar. Nothing, however, will induce her to remain In their service and she leaves the parsonage the same evening, having told nothing further of her adventure with the Blue Lady. The cook is disposed to resent Eliza' departure as a personal injury. Had they not weathered the storm together, and is she to be left to ride Into port alone? She calls the poor housemaid all sorts of hard names for being such a timorous fool and swears that twenty ghosts may come and grin in her face before they'd tersuade her to give up a good service and a ind master and mistress. Notwithstanding her boasts, however, not more than a fortnight has elapsed since Eliza's departure when a very similar scream is heard from the basement, and Bessio, running down in consternation, finds the eook struggling on the floor, black in the face and with distorted features. The usual remedies are applied and in a few minutes the servant is sitting ou the hearth rug, trembling in every limb. " Cook cook 1 What is the matter?" cnes Bessio Darrell. "Oi ma'am 1 that faeel that awful face," returns the servant, sobbing. " What 1 Have you seen It, too?" " The Lord help me yes, ma'am I I've seen it the first and last time in my life. No power on earth shall make me sleep under this roof another mg - it. ' What I are you going to desert me also? I thought you always wanted to see the Blue Lady's fa. - . What is the matter with you? Why are you so frightened?" Lion l ask me, exciiums toe coo, tw ouv fwir,l - hfr mistress with a look of terror. " I couldn't describe it to you, not if you was to kill me for it, but I must leave you tms very nignt, ma'am, or I shall be a dead woman before the morning." ' This is becoming serions," says tiugn, wnen his wifo confides the cook's intentions to bun. We shall bo unable to keep a servant at tins rate. However, my dear, you must send lor old Martha Seraggs to help in the work, and your sister will find us a new cook and housemaid as soon as she can." Notwithstanding the inconvenience to wiiion they are subjected, Mr. and Mrs. Darrell contrive to make themselves very comfortable until the morning that Bessio receives a letter irom ner married sister in London to say that she has found her some fresh servants. Tt is all rkr it. Hnch." 6ho says, encenuuy, as she brings the letter to her husband to road. " Mniririo has found two charming servants for us, and only waits to know when she shall dis patch them to Sareelett. nut wuat is me matter?" she continues, as she observes his downcast countenance ; " has anything gone wrong ? You look as if there was a death in the family." " ReBsie."renlies Mr. Darrell. solemnly, "write and thank Maggie for her kindness, but tell her we shall not require the servants, lor we eannot remain in Sareelett." 'Not remain m Sareelett 1 And for wnat reason?" " My dearl I havo seen the Blue Lady's lace. " And are vou eoing to bo as ridiculous as the servants?" cries Bessie. " Upon my word, this is too absurd, nnd for a brave man, too." " You mav lautsh at mo as you like, Bossie, but we two must leavo the parsonage to - night. I would not sleeD hero again to save my life. I am going to ride into Gorhambury at once, and tell tho Bishop the reason of my resignation." "Oh, Hugh 1 this is most disappointing, and after all the trouble we havo taken to make the houso comfortable. And how are we to livo if you give up tho curacy? "Don't ask me; I have not the courage to think," replies tho unhappy man. " And all because vou have seen the Bine La dy's face when you have seen her back fifty times. I wish I could seo it. What is she like?" Hugh Darrell groans and buries his lace iu his hands. "Merciful heaven 1" he exclaims; "preserve mo from dwelling on or remembering it or I ahull go out of my mind 1" Not all the persuasions of his wife will prevent his riding into Gorhambury to seo the Bishop; but ho insists upon her leaving the parsonage when ho does and putting herself under the protection of a neighboring farmer's wifo. He is to be away for a night and he enjoins Bessie to remain at the farm until ho can fetch her away, and starts on his journey vory down - heartedly, but sercno in the idea that his beloved wifo will be safe during his absence. But Bessio is a very courageous and independent little woman. She does not like being treated as a child and she is curious on tho subjoet of the Blue Lady's face. She is even anxious to confront it. Old Martha Scruggs sloeps in tho house, and why should not she? So when evening arrives she makes some lame excuse to tho farmer's wifo and slips back to her old house. The deaf and blind Martha hardly knows she has returned and she steals up to her bed room and lays herself down to rest. At noon the following day Hugh Darrell presents himself at the farm house and demands his wife. " Mrs. Darrell ain't here, sir," replies the farmer's helpmate ; " she went homo to sleep last night, and haven't come bock yet. I've been wondering all the morning if she've got her breakfast." Ho makes no answor, but setting spurs to his horse gallops as fast as ho can to tho vine - covered parsonage. " Where is your mistress," he demands breathlessly of old Martha. " Tho mistress, sir I I'm sure I don't know. She came in last evening, but I haven't soen her since. I thought she had gone back to the farm." He leaps to the ground and dashes up stairs with one bound. The curtains are drawn closely round their nuptial bed. Ho tears them open and roads the awful truth at a glance. Bessie is lying on the pillows, white as marble, with her eyes open and fixed with horror, but doad doad beyond all hope of reeall 1 There is no need to tell the wretched husband what has caused his loss. Ho knows that she has been brought face to face with the Blue Lady 1 Doubtless my readers will imagine that I have invented this little story for their Christmas mystification and lay it down again with a smile of superior wisdom. Will it interest them more if I tell them that it is no fietion built on my own fancy, but the relation of facts that happened in our own country, and not very long ago? The parsonage of Sareelett is still vacant. No one has ventured to inhabit it since Bessie Darrell came by hor death there, and the chances are that now the story is becoming more freoly circulated tho Blue Lady will remain unmolested for evermore. Christmas Mince Tie. Charles Dudley Warner in Harper's. In the old time the Christmas season properly began on the 16th of December (described in the Prayer - book calendar as O Sapiontla) and ended January 6, with Twolfth - ntght When the learned Dr. Parr was asked what day In December It was proper to begin eating mince pie he said : u Begin on O Sa - plentla. but please to say Christmas pie, not mince pie mince pie is Puritanical." If thore is any merit in eating mince pie, as this association of it with the holy season seems to imply, then we have a certain test ot the piety of the Pilgrims to New England, tor thoy and tholr descendants did not hesitate to eat mince pie any day in the year they could get it and had so much grace that they could take it with impunity lor breakfast on a summer morning. A Doad March. Flay me a march low - toned and slow, a march for a silent tread, Fit for the wandering feet of one who dreams of the silent dead, Lonely between the bones below and the souls that are Overhead. Here for awhile they smiled and sang, alive In the Interspace ; Here with the grass beneath the feot and the stars above the face. Now are their feet beneath the grass, and whither has flown their grace ? Who shall assure us whence thy come or tell us the way they go ? Verily life with them was joy, and now they have left us woe; Once they were not and now they are not and this la the sum we know. Orderly range the seasons due and orderly roll the stars How shall we deem the soldlor brave who frets of his wounds and scars 1 Are we as senseless brutes that we should dash at the well - seen bars? No ; we are here with feet unfixed, but ever as If with lead Drawn from the orbs which shine above to the orb on which we tread, Down to the dust from which we came and with which we shall mingle, dead. No, we are here to wait, and work, and strain our banished eyes, Weary and sick of soil and toll, and hungry and fain for skies Far from the reach ot wingless men and not to be scaled with cries. No, we are here to bend our necks to the yoke of Tyrant Time, Welcoming all the gifts he gives us glories ot youth and prime; Patiently watching them all depart as our heads grow white as rime. Why do we mourn the days that go tor the same sun shines each day ? Ever a spring her primrose hath and ever a Hay her may; Sweet as the rose that died lost year Is the rose that Is born to - day. Do we not too return, we men, as ever the round earth whirls? Never a head is dimmed with gray but another is sunned with curls. She was a girl and he was a boy, but yet there are boys and girls. Ah, but alas for the smile of smiles that never but one face wore I Ah, for the voice that has flown away like a bird to on unseen shore I Ah, for the face, the flower ot flowers, that blossoms on earth no mom I CotmD MoHkhoute in tht Maguin$ of Art, In Loye With a Doll A STORY HEARD IN NAPLES The old - fashioned improvisatore, who figures in medieval Italian romances, is nearly obsolete now ; but I met one In Naples last spring at the Hotel dee Etrangers, a Signer Caprani, who has an active fancy, rare flneney and an amiability that seems inexhaustible. . It was a Jolly dinner party of eight, consisting of old Generals Da Haitzoff, of Moscow, Bignor Constanzi (who was formerly of the household of King Victor Emanuel), four ladies, myself and the Improviser. After we had finished our last flask ot Chianti, one of the ladies asked the Improvisatore to tell ns a story. Caprani's eyes sparkled, and he at onee consented. " I'll give you a subject," said the old General. " Not too difficult, please," remarked Caprani ; "remember, I have just dined." " Your first love," suggested the General. " Oh, yes 1 your first love," cried the ladies in chorus. Caprani drained his goblet, rolled up his eyes for a moment, and then started off: There is a proverb in Naples that a flret - Iove never wholly dies. I agree with the saying; at least the saying agrees with my experience. In my case it happens that when ardent love is mentioned I always experience the same passionate heart - throbs, the same delicious tortures that I felt in childhood. " I regard it as a duty to inform you that I am gifted with extraordinary sensitiveness, contrary to tho rule ordinarily governing my sex, and incomprehensible, even to myself. Every psychologist will indorse my statement when I assert that persons of extreme sensibility are usually endowed with great precocity. You can rightly conjecture, then, tho extent of mine. " At the tender age of seven I directed my sad eyes to the blue vault of heaven and sighed. It is true that at a certain age one weeps from othor causes than the birch ; but I am willing to wager that my tears, born of my precocity, were quite different from the tears of other children, from an emotional point of view. My parents even went so far us to assert that I howled like a whirlwind or a broken - down baritone. " I shall not describe the tempests that swept over and ravaged the forests of my heart. Suffice it to say that in me Nature had developed the man before the boy. But to my tule." CHAPTER I. It was the night before Christmas 1 Petrarch became enamoreed of his Laura on that day. Era 11 giorno ch' al sol st scoloraro, Per la pictu' del anno tattore 1 rai Ed io tul prcso. That was for him and for poetry a precious epoch. I quote retrarch because there are points of resemblance between his case and mine. The only difference he was a saint ; I am a sinner. He wrote madrigals and sonnets to celebrate his lady lovo. He chose the most melancholy season of the year to fall in love. I became a victim of the little god on a cold winter night after having disposed of half a dozen mince pics. The Church of Santa Chiara was the scene of his surrender. My first wound from Cupid's arrow was received at an exhibition of fantoccini. But I must not anticipate. It was tho night before Christmas. I had not yet really loved ; I had led a sort of butterfly existence, roving' from flower to flower, tasting sweets here and there especially among my mother's preserves, but I had not yet felt the profound moral enjoyment that constitutes love in its entirety. I was in my ninth year. Do you recollect that period when love is Two souls with but a single thought, Two hearts that beat as one 1 When one dreams of lightly floating in rose - lined clouds in tho limitless expanse of one's own heaven 1 You smile! You are wrong. At the age of nine one experiences all this, and more especially if he bo gifted with my extreme susceptibility. It was the night before Christmas for the third time. My father's sister, who lived in Posilipo, joined us to spend the holidays. This aunt of mino an excellent woman was also extremely susceptible to the allurements of wine, mince pies anu marionettes. Suscetitibilitv was a family failing. To celebrate appropriately the arrival of our esteemed relative and tho holidays at the same time, it was deeidod to go to the play. CHAPTEB II. I shall not attompt to describe the joy that stole over me whenever I heard the word "play." It is enough that on that evening my littlo head was turned, my little heart throbbed wildly. Why that agitation, that confusion? Was it the anticipated delight of again behold ing my beloved Pierrot? Was it a mystorious presentiment? Precisely at the hour of seven we entered the theatre. Signor Mozzoeapo, the manager, whom I knew by sight, with his own hands received from my mother the tickets that were to open for us the portals of this Elysium the gallery; and as he pointed gracefully in tho direction of the abodes of tho cods, he dismissed us with a smile. We hastened to secure our seats ; and after waiting half an hour, the ovorture ceased ana the snectaclo began. You may imagine with what ecstatic delight I drank in every word of that picturesque drama. It was about a beautiful maiden in a short muslin skirt, kidnapped by a villain, wrapped in a cloak black as his own conscience, and carried off into a forest crowded with villains armed to the teeth. II Cielo I What agony did I not suffer at the fate of that forlorn one, whose voice was so ton - dor and sympathetic. But she had an intrepid lovor with a puir of long moustaches, who at last liberated her, dealing forth his heroic vengeance on the heads of the bold assassins. Ho was accomnanied. of course by his ever faithful, ever invincible Pierrot, whose sword, rivaling Excatlbur, was so potent as to run a Oozou ot Ins toes tnrougn tne oouy at onee. The maiden thus rescued, there was great re joicing, ending with the grandest nuptials, Whereat my wnote nature was surieu. chapter in, Have you ever seen a ballet of Neapolitan puppets? All is splendor and fascination; ete, Kant costumes, ravishing scenes, triumphal marches, dances and music. You are intoxicated with delight. The ballet began. The first figure to appear was a fairy queen, an enchanting being whose magic wand, that transtormed roses into cupius, causod me to vibrate with emotion. Then entered upon the scene two Spanish princes, followed by a brilliant suite. Then we saw the raging sea, and on its bosom a vast ship, which, after losing its masts and sails, was swallowed by the remorseless, treach erous canvas elemont. But. behold 1 in an instant the scene is trans formed into a delicious garden, resplendent with sunshine and flowers. Then came the ballet. Four male and four female dancers entered, making a profound courtesy to the Spanish pnnees ana the yueen oi tne iaines, seuieu on trolden throne. Then began tho dance. At tho termination of a brisk quadrille the first male and female dancer suddenly leaped high in the air and landed in the centre of the stage. A hurricane of applause grooted this torpsi - chorean triumph. ' Tn sheer bewilderment I closed my eves. When I opened them the premiere danseuse' was uirectiy ueiure me musuuig a puuuwio. T i? her one elance. she returned it and it burned into my very soul. I was transfixed. I had never before in my short life seen anything so entrancing. Terpsichore incarnate a syjph a fay I She wore a flame - colored bodice ; ringlets of gold fell ninr a nock of marble, and her eyes were as blue as the waters of our beautiful bay. The more 1 gazed the more was i fascinated. Sho executed a passeul, causing more devastation than the earthquake at Ischia. Every step, every pose was a fresh arrow plunged Into my heart. ... She danced like a sylph, she flew, she was overwhelmed with applause. As she bowed to acknowledge it ner eyes tell on mino, mat speu - hound followed her everv movement. Oh, had I but a jewel or a flower to lay at her feet I I had only a caramel ; I threw her that, with a kiss. She did not acknowledge it. Her modestv restrained her. However, before she retired she gave me one more look. T loved her ! ! I I She was mine I I hers, for ever 1 Yes, for ever I I knew no more, for I fell a senseless weight In my aunt's arms ; who, good soul, thinking I had fallen asleep, carried me home. This is the simple story of my first love. At the age of nine one loves either not at all or for all time ; and I loved madly 1 As soon as we arrived home, on putting me to bed, my parents discovered that I was sufforlng from a raging fever. "It is the evening's excitement," whispered my susceptible aunt. " It is indigestion," said my worthy but prosaic mother. " Too much minoo - ple," suggested the servant. I feiened sleep that thev might leave me to my musings. Alone I thought of my dancer and did not close my eyes all night. Two evenings after we repeated our visit to the theatre anil I saw her once again. She was more beautiful and seductive than ever. But my aunt returned to Posilipo nnd we ceased to visit tho theatre. But do you think I forgot my first love f On tbo contrary, her image was engraven on By heart. I loved wtu all my aoni I Could I but have written and received a line in reply I I thought ot addressing myself to the manager, her master her father perhaps. He would have removed my doubts and alleviated my torments, would have given me the only pleasure I wished in this world an introduction. But suppose he was a tyrant? Usually all fathers of the girls we love are tyrants. My heart failed me at the dread ordeal and for many months I devoured my doubts in secret. CHAPTEB IT. A year passed. One fine day my aunt, who hadeoma to pay her periodical visit, proposed that we should all go to the fantoccini, un, latai night 1 I saw her once again. She was dressed in blue and spangles, iter smile was as fascinating as ever, her grace even more entrancing. Ecstatically gazing at ner I felt myself wafted into the realms of ineffable bliss. When suddenly oh, ye gods, I shudder at the recollection, a cold, icy breath freezes my blood In one of her sublime leaps, crack I She broke in half and her left kg fieuoinlo the gallery and hit me on the nose ! I shrieked and fainted. Petrarch lost his Laura, and I lost my dancer, on Christmas Eve. Fatal destiny I I hovered between life and death for many weeks. Since then I have seen other danseuses who are not made of wood, but I am unable to obliterate the recollection of my first love. And so, dear friends, I ask your sympathy. This will explain whyI have never married. Excuse these tears I And with the method of an accomplished comedian the Improvisatore applied his hand kerchief to his eyes and seemed to weep, ine story over, I made a note of it and now I present it to you, dear reader, as nearly as it lives in my memory. THE CnRISTMAS TREE. Legends of the Mistletoe and Other Accompaniments of the Holiday Festivities. Charles Dudley Warner in Harper's Magazine. The custom of decoration by green plants and flowers in all sorts of festivals is as old as history, and of course the use of evergreens at Christmas needs no explanation, nor is the custom any less Christian because it is of immemorial use among pagan nations. The mistletoe, however, had a unique place. The Celtic peoples and the Druids held it in the same veneration that the P.omans did. It was used by the Boinans in religious ceremonies and it may have been the " golden bough " of the infernal regions. The Druids gathered it against the festival of tho winter solstice with great solemnity, the prince of the Druids cutting it himself with a golden sickle. It was used as a charm against evil spirits and exeoilent modi - cal properties are ascribed to it. It was supposed to possess the power to preserve from poison and the mystic property of giving fertility. "Kissing undor the mistletoe " may have had reference to this ancient belief. There was a tradition that the maid who was not kissed under a bough of mistletoe at Christmas would not be married during the following year. There was onee a notion that its heathen origin should exclude it from the Christmas decorations, but this found no favor with the young people at any period. On the contrary, they took good care that it should be hung and that it should have plenty of berries, for tho ceremony under it was not duly performed if a berry was not plucked off with each kiss, and consequently the supply of berries determined tho number of kisses. It did not need the Roman use of the plant to recommend such a preventive of the state of old - maidism. Some trace the use of green bush decoration to tho original branches of vervain among tho Bomans. With Bomans and Druids the vervain was a panacea for every ill, and they believed, above all, that it " conciliated hearts which wore at variance " another good office of any plant in the Christmas season. The Druids only venerated the mistletoe that grow on the oak, but the common mistletoe ( Viscus album), with its pearly berries, is gathered from the hawthorn, the old apple tree, tho lime and the fir and from other trees. Of late years this parasite has been scarcer than formerly and efforts have boen made to propagate it. This is done by cleaning off the bark under any joint of a young tree with the moistened thumb and then pressing the glutinous berry on the cleaned place till it adheres to the bark; it will begin to show growth in about fifteen months. It is an obvious suggestion that in sections of the country whore the statistics show a falling off in marriages this plant ought not to be let die out. The use of the Christmas tree, with its fruit of presents, is recent in Englund, and was introduced from Germany a few years ago. Thero is great dispute about its origin, whether in India, or whether it does not represent tho tree Ygg - drasll, or world tree the ash tree of existence of Scandinavian mythology. But tho use of evergreens in England is as old as the days when the Druids brought tho mistletoe from the woods with solemn ceremony. In Stowe's time every man's house, and also tho parish churches, were decked with holm, ivy, bays and whatever the season of the year afforded to be green, and the conduits and standards in the streets (a hint for the present telegraph companies) were likewise garnished. In the year 1444 he says there was on the 1st of February a great tempest of thunder and lightning, which set Paul's steeplo on fire, and at Leadenhall, in Cornhill, a standard of wood which was set up in the pavement and nailed full of holm and ivy was torn up and cast down by the malignant spirit (as was thought). On Christmas Eve, at tho timo the Yule log was brought in and lighted with the last yoar's brand, it was customary to decorate the windows of every house, in cottage and hall,with bay, laurel, ivy and holly leaves. An English gypsy told Mr. Charlos G. Leland the reason for using evergreens on Christmas. It is this : " The ivy nnd holly and pine tree never told a word where our saviour was tiiatng uimseir, ana so tney Keep alive all wintor and look green all the year. But the ash. like the oak. told of Him when He was hiding, so they have to remain dead through the winter. And so we gyp.siesilways burn an ash nre every Great Day." A CTJKIOStTY IX POLITICS. The Kemarkablo Kecord of Close Votes by Which a Boston Alan Alwuys Profited. From the Boston Journal. Alderman Leighton, whose vote in the Fourth Aldormanio district is a tie with that of Mr. Freeman, has had a remarkable record of close contests with competitors. In 1877 he was a candidate for the Legislature from Ward 9, with Mr. Brooks Adams as his colleague on the Democratic ticket. Among the four candidates, one of the Republicans came out at the head of the poll and the othor at the foot. Mossrs. Leighton and Adams were botween them, the former with 591 votes, the latter with 589, and it was on that plurality of two that Mr. Leighton entored the House. At the municipal election in iwv Mr, Leighton and Ex - Alderman Caldwell wore twelfth and thirteenth men according to the re turns, and a recount was necessary to dotormine which was entitled to membership. The recount showed that Mr. Caldwell had 14 votes more than Mr. Leighton, but that there wore 80 mis - Drinted ballots evidently intended lor tno latter, whieh, if counted, would give him a plurality of lfi. Undor the circumstances Mr. Caldwell de clined to make a contest and Mr. Leighton took his soat. This plurality was on a total vote in the neighborhood of 50,000. Tho next year, 1883, Mr. Leighton was again a candidate, and again the result was in doubt. The press returns on election night gave him 20,985 and Jix - Aiderman Hteumns a,tm, a amor - ence of onlv 44 votes. The official ward returns showed 27,080 for Mr. Lioghton and 26,947 for Mr. Stebbins, giving the formor a plurality of 183. The recount, nowever, - snowoa inat nr. Leighton had 27,387 and Mr. Stebbins 27,022, so that the former was again seated. This year the precinct returns make an exact tie between him ana jur, freeman aau a recount io utuu la - quired to dotormine the results. A PRETTY PICTURE OF THE PLAINS. Herds of Wild Horses Led by Stallions Which Seem as Proud as Drum Majors. From the Los Angeles Express. One of the most startling and romantic feat ures of border life occurred recently on the Wild Horse prairie, thirty miles north of Los Angeles, when a band of wild horses, undor the lead of a noble sorrel stallion, came galloping over the plains to reconnoitor a company of surveyors engaged in making a survey of the tract. The band dashed toward Captain Keller and his party of surveyors till within about five hundred feet, when the leader halted in a granary proua and defiant manner, with neok curved, nostrils distended, erect and tail on dress parade and all the band ranged themsolves on each side of him like a squad of cavalry in battle charge. After surveying the scene for a row moments tne leader galloped away, followod by the band in tho most graceful and dignified manner. The scene was most romantic, and tho picture of the lordly leader, with his most obedient servants, in their fleet and graceful motions, was worthy of an artist's Doncil. Thero was another band of wild horses on the same prairie, under the leadership of a dark mahogany Day stainon, with black mane, tail and knees. In this band thore are two white horses and the rest are bay And sorrel mainlv. Few people are aware that at the northern base of the Siorra Madre, only thirty miles from this city, wild horses roam in their native beauty and crop tho rich grasses that grow on Wild Horse Prulrio. Yet such is the fact, and their sleek appearance and graceful motions are the admiration oi ail oenomers. A GASH IX ?UEAT KATTTRES FACE. The Black Caayoa ia Um Very Summit ml ihm Big Hon Moaatalas. Tim th 8t Paul Punear - Pnaa. Black Canyon b raft in the very summit of the Big Horn Mountains and yawns for a somewhat tortuous length of thirty miles, stretching from Its Junction with the canyon, through which tho waters of the Big Horn river force their way southeastward into Wyoming and almost to the boundaries of the National Park. It has never been thoroughly explored, but, except at the southernmost extremity, maintains a nearly uniform depth of two thousand feet. As Westerners well know, mountains In these parts are treeless and rise to the snow - line or beyond in gradual and rounded slopes. Thero is not the slightest indication of the Black canyon until one reaches its very verge, and the effect of the contrast between its densely wooded sid where "the tall pines, like funeral plumes," wave to and fro and sing ceaselessly, and the treeless acclivities behind, is as unique as can be imagined. Well is it named "Blaek," for these same pines, massed as they are with naught but the denser foliage displayed, give an air of Erebus itself to the whole huge fissure. Bringing into more marked effect the sombre - ness of the greater portion of the canyon are huge white cliffs, perfectly perpendicular, and with their sheer height of more than a third of a mile towering into improssiveness which compels silence on the part of the onlooker, be he garrulous as Falstaff or querulous as Hoi - man. He would be a queer American who, looking down into the chasm, did not feel an immediate and irresistible desire to penetrate the depths and look up. To accomplish this is arduous, but neither difficult nor dangerous. Two or three miles south of the debouching of the Big Horn canyon a bridle path leads to the bottom of the Black. It is partly the bed of a stream whieh depends upon the rainy season for its flow and partly a track made by bears, elk or door, terraced as it were in the very sjde of tho steepness. From tho entrance to the deep wood to the bottom plateau is about a mile and three - quarters by this path and over all but a half mile it is possible to ride. Steep as tho side of a house in almost every part, but winding sufficiently to allow tho line of direction to be maintained within one's base, a careful horse can make good progress until more than half way down. Then must his rider dismount, for what was steep before becomes precipitous now, and tho footway instead of being hard and even is covered with sand, earth, loose stones and other detritus from the towering sides above. Both horse and rider must slide ; and as in the middle of tho steepest part the path bends round a large rock, at an acute angle, while to the right yawns a precipice hundreds of feet in depth, one has the elation which comes of semi - danger after he has passed this evil half mile and remounts for the last and comparatively easy half mile of descent with the complacency of him who has encountered and overcome obstacles. Yet it isn't really very dangerous, since the loose earth helps to hold one back, and a number of army ladies have made tho descent in perfect safety, but with more or less damage to habiliments. Once landed on tho perfectly level surface at the bottom of the big canyon, the explorer finds that the sides do not meet, as they seem to do when when looked at from above, but are separated by from a few hundred foot to a quarter of a mile. The huge bare walls of rock are even more impressive when seen from below, and seem like the battlements of some huge castle erected by Titans and worthy of defense by the Olympian gods. Shut out from the world and singing its merry, dashing song through the centre of the lower level, runs Canyon creek, here doep and narrow, thero wide and wadeablo and alwaysascold as ice and as clear as crystal. Why not? It is fed by snow and ice.and on its waves the sun can pour its beams but four or five hours out of every twenty - four. And in that ereek what trout I Lovely salmon - colored fellows ; the mountain trout of Montana and Idaho; gamy as the oldest and bravest of their Allegheny brethren ; delicious to tho palate 33 a Ward could desire, and sizable in that many attain tho noble size of three or four pounders, and few which the angler cares to savo weigh less than a pound. They will bite at anything from a piece of red flannel coat lining to a grasshopper, and to see ono snatch the bait in tho midst of a headlong rush up stream, and then to feol the thrill in wrist and shoulder as ho resents the barb, is to " have fun" in as true and full a sense as the heart of tho fisherman ever imagined. HOW A STAGE OCEAN IS MADE, With White Canvas to Keprescnt Ice Black ltombazine Serves as a First - Class Sea. London Letter in the BoBton Herald. The ocean of the stage is produced by a number of boys lying on their backs beneath a dark cloth and working away with their logs and arms. Percy Fitzgerald mentions a clover instance of stage illusion in a play called " The Sea of Ice." A woman, with her child on n frozen sea, is exposed to tho treachery of the villain of tho story. It is a wild Arctic picture. Presently the iee begins to break up and after a time the woman and her infant are floating on a block of ice in the midst of a rolling sea. The effect was produeod in the simplest way. "Strips of whitened canvas, representing the ice, were slowly drawn away to the right and left, revealing water underneath, which was represented by sheots of perfectly black bombazine, not green nor blue, as might be expected. The effect on the audience was entirely owing to tho contrast with tho glaring white ico, which the artist knew caused tho waters bolow to look of an inky hue. The result was founded on ocular illusion and therefore on true scenic principles.'' There were the boys at work, of course, under the cloth, and the iceberg on which tho fugitives floated away was a wooden platform that was drawn off through a slit in the bombazine ocean. Real water has nover been found to look so real on the stage as its artistic imitation. You remember the story of tho low comedian who carried undor his arm a bogus pig and squeaked himself. A rival tried tho real tiling, but it was not so effective; tho squeak did not seem so natural to the audience as the imitation. Official Manners in a London District Board. From a Newspaper Report of the Proceedings. Mr. Hutchinson. I see my grumbling friend on the right wishes to speak, and I'd rather alt down and hear him. Mr. Bart. I was not grumbling, and don't you take my name in vain. Mr. Hutchinson. I didn't mention your nama Mr. Bart. You would only throw dirt on it if you did. Mr. nufe - hinson (excitedly). I treat you with silent contempt. Mr. Dart You're a fool. Sir. Hutchinson. And you're a dirty varmint, a stinking blackguard, and I'll clout you on the ear. A Granddame Who live a Contury. From the Eastern Virginian. , An old colored woman, named Elzio Eyre, once the slave of John Eyre, died last Saturday night on the seaside. She Is supposed to have been fully one hundred and ton years old. She was the motlior of Neubra Mapp, deceased ; Neubra Slapp was the mother ot Caudaoo Bowdoin ; Candace Bowdoin ia the mother ot Maria Bayly, and Maria Bayly Is the mother ot six children now living. This old woman was, therefore, the mother and grandmother of four generations, and her descendants are said to constitute the most numerous family ou the Eastern Shore. Showing the Awful Toughness of Ganders. From the Newnan (Ga.) Herald. We heard the other day of a belligerent gander in tho flock of J. F. Stephens, Carroll county, which met with a singular accident three weeks ago. Moking fight at a heifor in the lot, he seized her by the forehead, when the hcitor, by a dexterous turn of a horn, struck the gander's neck and out out the windpipe, leaving It nunging aown UKe a snout, i no old gander's wound healed over with the windpipe still hanging out, through which he breathes, and ho seems to be as hearty as ever, though not as belligerent us beloro. What a Busybody Got For His Fains. From the Hartford Post. A Norwich man recently put up a queer house, maliciously doslgned to cut oil as much ot his neighbor's view as possible. Now he finds that through Inaccurate surveys his houso Is three feet over his neighbor's line and this aggrlovod person will not let him oft short of moving his house to where it belongs. A New Way to Make Freaks for Market. From the Omaha Herald. A curiosity for the museums is said to have been produced in Nobroska by cutting otrthe ears of a call and quickly adjusting a pair which had been removed from a mule. Ballade of Christmas Ghosts. Between the moonlight and the Are, In winter evenings long ago, What ghosta I raised at your desire To make your leaping blood run slow I How old, how grave, how wise we grow I What Christmas ghost can make us chill - Save these that troop iu mournful row, The ghosts we all can raise at will 1 Tho beasts can talk in barn and byre On Christmas eve, old legends know. As one by one the yoars retire, We men fall silent then, I trow Such sights has memory to show, Such voices from the distance thrill. Ah me! they come with Christmas snow, Tho ghosts we all can raise at wtlL Oh, children of tho village choir, Your carols on the midnight throw I Oh, bright across the mist and mire, Ye ruddy hearths ot Christmas glow I Boat back the shodes, beat down the woe, ltenew the strength ot moral will ; Be welcome, all, to oome or go, The ghosts we all can raise at will. Friend, lureum corda, soon or slow, We part, like guests who've Joyed tbelr fill ; Forget them not, nor mourn them so. The ghosts we all can raise at will I Andrei Lang, in Uarper't Masazint. OLD CHRISTMAS PHILADELPHIA CUSTOMS. Original Neglect and guhaeqiieat Grawtb aff the Celebration of the Iay. Although Pennsylvania was settled principally by English people, the preponderance and iiiila - ence of the Society of Friends was so great ht the early periods that Christinas was particularly excluded from opportunity of consideration and celebration. The Quakers at a period coeval with the preaching of George Fox declared that its members could not " conscientiously unite in the observance of public fasts and feasts and holy days set up in the will of man there is no inherent holiness in any one day above another, but every day is to be kept alike holy." The Presbyterians were in unity with the Quakers on this subject. The Baptists were few in number and pledged to a simple eeremo nial. The Church of Englund had so few worshipers in the early days of the colony that the Christmas celebration was even with them formal rather than hearty. The 1 toman Catholics observed the holy day according to the calendar and might have had some simple observances among their families, but not sufficient to es tablish custom. For seventy years and more Christmas in this State was of no more importance than an ordinary duy. None of the beautiful English customs so charmingly described by ancient and modern writers were observed. If there any feasting it was limited to the usual family dinner, with its chief piece of fowl or of roa.1 beef. The mince pie may have been cxpeeteL Beyond that there was no revelry and tho hiy passed in as dull a fashion as any other. - Young Philadelphians knew nothing of the roasted boar's head, with garlands free and rosemary; nor of the bringing in of the yule log; nor of the Waits and their carols ; nor of the Lord of Misru ! and the prank3 of his followers. The Christmi.s observance came in with the increase of the German settlers, who brought from the old country the Continental customs. The Moravians began to arrive about 1740 and immediately dcnionstrat.. - J by tho peculiarity of their ceremonies the difference of their methods of living from thoso 'if the ordinary residents. Tho German Reformed and Lutherans began to establish congregations about the same time, and from these the principal Pennsylvania customs of Christmas may be said to have originated. The Moravians gave a week to the celebration, commencing before and ending after the memorial day. There) was feasting, much of it, plentiful supplies ot liquor, the true Moravian, being addicted to creature comforts. There was musia always. Peculiar pieces wore played by trombone performers, Christmas hymns were sung with devotional interest, the Moravian meeting houses were decorated. The Love Feast was a part of the church ceremony and the children were supplied with gingerbread, little books and other things. THE PCTZ AND TREE. The Putz and the Christmas tree seom to havo been of Gorman origin. The Putz of the first class was not a festooning of rooms with garlands and wreaths,but a scenic roprensentation of some landscape, in which were represented mountains, valleys, tumbling waterfalls and peaceful fields, lakes, villages in the bright green of summer or tho delicate snow covering of winter, managed sometimes with attraetiva moving figures. Tho grand Putz was tho work of many evenings in the fall and early winter. It was too much for tho opportunities of many families, but each household had its own decorations, also called tho Putz, whieh might be nothing more than a white cloth or sheet, tacked to a wall, on which were fixed branches of evergreen, bearing glittering stars, wax or wooden figures of augels.bright candies and burning candles. Moss properly disposed with toy figures arranged to represent some scene or incident, helped to make up the show. The ordinary household Putz was tho predecessor of the Christmas tree of our own times, in the decoration of which art and fancy frequently exhaust themsolves to the delight of the young people of the family, with whom Christmas memories are tho brightest of the year. TIIE MUMMEnS. One of tho English customs which obtained a foothold in Philadelphia was tho masque of the mummers a custom kept up from the middle part of the last century to within fifty or sixty years of the present day. The mummers were usually young fellows, who dressod in fantastic costume, took upon themselves characters and went from house to houso reciting certain rhymes and expecting "dole," which they generally received in tho shape of pennies or something to eat and drink. The English Christmas masque of " at. Georgo and the dragon" was tho foundation of their little play. With patriotic feeling, however, they Americanized tho piece. St. Georgo was not recognized, but Goorge Washington took his plaeo; the dragon became Beelzebub and sometimes "Old Noll with his copper nose" (Cromwell) was superseded by Cooney Cracker, who " chawed tobacker." The rhymes were rude and simple : Here comes I, old Beelzebub, On my shouldor I carry a club, In my hand a dripping - pan, Don't you think I'm a Jolly old man? The Futher of his Country was inferior in importance in the piece to the father of evil. His speech commenced : nere am I, great Washington, On my shoulder I carry a gun. The mummors were an attractive feature ; there were mysteries about their coming and going, and it was a point of etiquette that however transparent their disguises might be none who saw them should be allowed to address them by thoir proper names. Southwark, Kensington and Northern Liberties were the favorite circuits of these companies when they were " on the road." It is surprising how completely thoy have ceased, so that even the memory of them has boen but partially preserved. Tho Christmas stocking hung at the chimney was a general custom iu a family whore there were children whilst the chimney - place was open and even long afterward when the hot - air register took its place aud St. Nicholas would have been puzzled to find his way out. The giving and receiving ot Christmas gifts was one of the great features of the day. rKOJIESADINQ CHESTNUT STREET. About fifty or sixty years ago there arose a custom among young people of promenading Chestnut street on Christmas Eve and on Christmas afternoon. Thousands of persons dressed in their best were seen abroad on that day, and by. the appearance of tho larger portion of them it was evident they had como from the outer sections of the city and county and that Chestnut street was visited by them only onco a year. The throngs became more dense with each return of the anniversary until the street became uncomfortable with the crowd and unpleasant by the pushing and rudeness which were occasionally manifested. This celebration became a great nuisance. It was particularly such on Christmas Eve when the tin horn was introduced and blown by thousands in a distracting din. The suppression of this senseless and annoying practice is one of tho benoflts for which the citizens are indebted to the firmness and good sense of Mayor King; Oratorio in St. Paul's Cathedral. From the London Pall Mall Gazette. Wo can only hope that the gentleman who grumbled in our columns a tew days ago over the irreverence and lovlty of some of the visitors to St Paul's was present in the groat cathedral last night to hear Spohr's " Last Judgment." He might thus have seen ono ot the grandest buildings in the world turned to the noblest of uses and tilled from end to end with a rapt and, in the truest sense of the word, k reverent crowd. Solemn music is undoubtedly that - form ot religious expression which possesses the greatest reality and exercises the widest influence in the present day, and they do wlsoly who utilize the splendid opportunities oilerod by our great cathe drals to give full Bcope to the tremendous power of such creations as " Tho Last J udgment " The Chapter of St. Paul's have in this, as in so many fiber respects, set a notable example. They realize to tho full tlie great public duty involved in the trusteeship ot a splendid national possession, and tho scene of last night was but one more proof that the cathedral has become, what so few of our churches are, a real factor, a living influence for good, among the vast population in the midst of which it is placed. A Queer Commodity in Commerce. From the New Haven News. A Norwich gentleman made a remarkable shipment tills week to his father, who Is visiting In the Bermuda Islands. When the transportation authorities inquired concerning the contents of the very heavy barrel which they were requested to ship they were Informed that the barrel contained gravel. " Gravel 1" thoy exclaimed, incredulously. " Yes, gravel," replied the consignor. He then went on to explain that In the Bermudas they have no sand or gravel for their chickens and that he was sending this somewhat unusual commodity to his futher for his biddies. A Thousand Founds of Wheat from One Grain. From the Grass Valley (Cal.) Record. From a single grain of wheat planted in 1881 grew twonty - two stalks, each bearing a full head. These yioldod 860 grains, TOO ot which were planted the noxt yoar, producing one - flfth of a bushel of splendid wheat This was planted lost spring, yielding sovonteen bushels, making 1,030 pounds ot wheat Irom one grain in three years. Of a Kobin Redbreast In a White Jacket. From the Hartford Times. A eleven - year - old robin owned by Charles Hinds, Bristol, Is dead. When about seven years old It turned perfectly white and remained so until It moulted the next year, when It took on tho usual colors of a robin and those colors continued permanent. It was a Hue singer and always foretold a Btorm by Its peculiar peeping notes. ifcltfffrtim &MH

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