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1. Once upon a midnight cheery,"
While I waited my sweet deary,
TTpon an old and crazy rocking chair,—
Relic of forgotten lore
Wl'i'ewe-ehdtted, chair a grunting,
Suddenly there came a thumping,.
Ast»f aonie on* wildly stamping,
3tauiping*now upon,the floor.
'Tissome eraxv loo!,"-1 mutter**,
"Thumping 'poh the chamber floor—
Only this and nothing more."
The old skinfiiut roosted in the room above
ua, and knowing that 1 was making love to his
"rare and radient maidea took this drtieate
way ol suggesting that I had bettert,make my
2. Ahl distinctlyI remember,
The old "case" had losthis temper.
And at every little noise we made
Fetched hisfootupon the floor.
Eagerly I wished him slumber,
Hevd no longer us encumber,—•
And another kiss 1M plunder,
Then her pardon I'd implore.
Here I clasped the radiant maiden,
Spite the noise upon the floor1—
Merely this and nothing more.
Feeling as though a storm wa9brewingover
head, I determinedto conclude the perform
ances and prevent, what I sorely dreaded—
(The girle's "Daddy" wears double soled No.
aines!) a collision between myself and the
"old man." which might result disastrously
to—somebody. But I wanted to "pop the
question," and to make a "sure pop" of it, I
"popped off" in pretty much this style 1—
3. ••Maiden t" said I, "Honeysuckle 1
Angel still il dove or devil!
By your sire that swears above us—
By his "rocks" we both adore,
Shall I clasp a maid undauuted.
In this rocking chair enchanted,
In this house by lovers haunted
Tell me truly, I implore—
Tell me truly, will yo* havt m*1
Tour 'Dad' is rich and I am poor,"
Quoth the mtdden, "Nevermore f"
This was a damper! I went home not_ to
steep but to decide whether to commit suieide
or take to drinking. Fortunately 1 foil asleep
before I had come to any definite conclusion.
Next morning we had hot buckwheat cakes
for breakfast and—I didn't suicide worth a
oent. She is married now. Her husband
wears his ha$r,~ short, "Metninka IjTsuiell a
mouse." JOB COSB.
It had been a wet, dreary day, that
seventeenth anniversary of my birthday,
and Pauline and 1 had been sitting so
long over our embroidery in the old oak
room that we had exhausted every topic
of conversation save one—that one' which
was the subject ever nearest my heart,
but which'was something to sacred too be
brandied on the flipping lips of Pauline
d'Esterre, my ex-governess.
But silence did not suit my companion.
After a pause of a few minutes, she laid
down her work,' making the most of a
deep yawn, and then pointing, to the pier
glass apposite, she remarked:
"What a fine contrast you and£f make,
Nina! Look—no man would admire
both of us, we are so totally different."
She spoke English with a perfect ac
cent, having been born and educated in
England but she inherited from her
parents the French vivacity and marve
lous taste in dress. As she sat there,
with her dainty laces and bows and fur
belows, she looked every inch a French
She made a true remark—we were to
tally different for, while she was short
and round, I was tall and slight she was
dark as night, with handsome black eyes
I was blue-eyed and fair-haired.
If- I had. one single point of beauty it
wMi nay hair—|£nd 1 was really proud of
that. I delighted in the pale yellow
waves which fell unconfined below my
waist, and persisted in wearing ray hair
in that fashon, in spite of Pauline's sug
gestion that I should never get a lover
while I looked so "babyish."
"No ons could look distingue^ was her
opinion, "with her hair flying about in all
directions and she would stroke her
own elaborate plaits and coils with com
I had given one look in the glass, at
her request, and was turning away with
a smile but she caught my hand and de
"Now which is Cousin Hugh's taste?"
she cried with a laugh that had a mock
ing ring in it
in spite of myself my faceflushed,and
I wrenched my hand away in annoyance.
This was the one subject upon which!
could not talk or jest with Pauline. I
had never loved or rejected
her but the light hand with which she
had held the reins of gvernment had rec
onciled me to her constant companship.
At this moment I felt that I positively
With a touch of her own sarcasm. I
replied. "It is absurd to compare a girl
of seventeen with a woman of twenty
eight," and turned away with a scornful
lip and burning cheeks.
It was an ugly spiteful speech, I know,
and the next moment I was heartily
ashamed ol it.
"Forgive me, mademoiselle," I pleaded,
venturing to lay my hand in hers but I
ought to have known that I had commit
ted an unpardonable offense. Pauline
would forgive any impertinence, but no
mortification of her personal vanity and
on the tender subject of her age she
was partieulary sensitive.
She pushed me angrily from her, and
flounced from her seat, and out of the
room, with such violence that my un
fortunate work-basket was caught in the
whirl of her silk skirts and dragged to
the ground. This, and the catching of
the aforsaid skirts in the door, rather
marred the dignity of her exit but the
face she turned on me as she disappear
ed might have been that of an injured
I stooped to pick up the reels and
scissors, and then walking to the window,
and flattening my nose against one of
the rain-dimmed panes, I began to think
humbly and regretfully over my l*Mpetr
tishness. What could have induced me
to be so rude and unladylike Could a
mean, contemptible feeling of jealousy
baxft been the cajrUe—jealousy that poor
Pauline d'Esterre should have the small
est share of good looks which might pos
sibly attract the attention'of the man
who was to be my husband^
Oh, Nina Brandon, I thought, in spite
of your ancient name, "what a contempti
ble little being you are for 6uch a noble
giant as Hugh Gordon to dream of call
This, same Hugh Gordon was an em
bodiment of my ideal of the noble and
chivalrous. JU ,a.child,^my loveibrmy
my years, and the tears I shed at his de
parture had. been amongst the bitterest
that my life had known.
I was an orphan. There, on the win
dow-pane before me, had been written
eighteen years before, with a diamond,
and bj ttie cj£anT3£L™y^^.~y0Un6
mother, the words, "Nina Brandon, aged
eighteen." A year after, she had died
her gentle life had ended when mine,
amidst sorrow and wailing for her loss,
The sight of the autograph, and the re
membrance of the mourning 1 then wore
for the father who had died only nine
months previously, brought the tears in
to my eyes. How lonely and desolate I
should have felt in the world but for one
It had been my dear father's will, ut
tered upon his death-bed to m.-, and often
in his lifetime to Hugh, that we should
marry each other, Hugh taking the name
of Brandon, there being no mate heir in
the family. But did he love me with
anything more than cousinly or brotherly
love 1 That was tha question with which
I tormented myself from day to day. To
be Hugh's wife would be for me happiness
supreme —but for him
After an absence from England of two
years, he was to return that very night,
and the question upon which my future
happiness rdepended would then be an
How slowly the.hours dragged on!
Twilight came yet still with beating
heart I kept my watch at the window.
At last I heard the sound of wheels com
ing np the long avenue, and, first like a
shadow in the dim distance, and then
clearer and clearer, I saw my hero once
He was driving himself and, as the
dog cart stopped at the door, he looked
eagerly-and hurriedly at all the windows.
But I had hidden behind the curtains-a
sudden fit of shyness had come over me.
Though I longed to run down an greet
him, yet I determined I would not go
until I was sent fdr. In a few moments
the summons came.
"Miss Nna, the major has arrived, and
is asking for jou.*'
Very demurely I walked down the
broad staircase, though my heart was
dancing with delight. He should not
think me a giddy child, I thought.
I could hear his voice in the library,
and supposed him to be talking to my
The door was a little way open, and I
was about to enter, when the thought
struck me that I would take a peep at
him first I wished to see whether he
was much altered.
He was standing by the window, and
his tall figure and handsome face stood
oat clearly against the light but, to my
great astonishment, it was not my aunt
to whom he was talking that low. fa
It was Pauline. She whom I had sup
posed to be a total stranger to my cousin
was standing close to him, her hand upon
his arm, her face raised to his with an
expression of earnest entreaty. 1 heard
her last words—"I have never ceased to
In the bewilderment of the moment
the thought rushed into my mind—"It
cannot bo real! I am dreaming and shall
wake in a moment it is certainly a
dream.'" Bui my aunt's hand placed on
my shoulder roused me to the reality.
In another moment Pauline came forth
smiling, showing all her fine white teeth.
"Nina, ma belle, Major Gordon and I
have met before, in Paris. Is this not a
Mechanically I took the hand he held
out to me with so much seeming warmth
and eagerness but, when he would have
drawn me to him, and kissed me, as of
old, I drew back coldly, and with as
much dignity as my seventeen years
I could not be content with Hugh's
country love therefore for the future he
must treat me as a woman, not as a child.
He only smiled in an amused manner,
and then, turning to my aunt, began to
converse with her. Beyond him I could
see Pauline's dark eyes with a laughing
triumph in them. I could not mistake
her expression. No doubt she was think
ing how favorably her welcome must have
contrasted with mine.
My heart seemed bursting with grief
and indignation. I could not remain a
moment longer in their presence so I
stole quietly from the library and up in
to the old oak room, where such a little
time before I had been watching for him
with so much joy and pride, and there
wept long.,and bitterly.
I did not notice how dark it was grow*
ing until alight suddenly streamed into
the room, and Pauline entered with a
lamp in her hand. She started with gen
nine astonishment as she saw me sitting
by the window.
"Why, Nina-alone, and crying!
What is the matter, child
I raised my eyes, red with Weeping, in
dignantly to her face.
"Pauline, you are a deceitfnl, bad
woman but I have found out your
secret. You could not help knowing
Hugh, and loving him, before you knew
me but why have yoh deceived me till
this time Why did.you let me go on
hoping—hoping! But here I broke
down, for tears choked my utterance.
"Mon ZKett/" (screamed Pauline, her
eyes flashing, and her voice shrill with
passion. "How did you know it? You
have broken open my desk! You have
read my letters!"
••Nothing of the sort," replied "but°
I saw this interview- betweeji you and the
major, and heard you confess that you
"WelUand what thenf' asked Pauline,
w^ith an evident relief which I could not
understand. "Major Gordon is free to
love where he chooses I suppose! Am
to be blamed because he chooses to
follow the teaching of his own heart,
rather than carry out the arbitrary and
mercenary plan of a deceased relative
With this cruel taunt she left tne.
And so my golden dream had vanished!
Oh, if he had only loved some one nobler
and worthier than myself, I could then
have borne it—but Pauline, whom I knew
to be mean, vain, untruthful! In my
bitter disappointment I was becoming
uncharitable again: yet, in my heart, I
believed that I did'not judge her un-for
One thing I determined upon they
should not see that I was unhappy.
Pauline should uot think that I was dying
of unrequited leve. So I sang gayly'as I
went about the house, became pert and
flippant to Hugh, and altogether assumed
a character as different from my own as
It was evident that they did not know
what to make of the change. Pauline
would open her great eyes at each of my
wild mood- but Hugh grave face look
ed stressed he did not approve of this
new Nina apparently.
I steadily avoided being alone with
him, and contrived that Pauline should
always "S^rTiexfrto him at the dinner
bltae though, to my surprise, he took
no advantage of the situation, but treat
ed her with cold politeness—nothing
more while to tne he was as he had ever
been gentle, kind, and tender as a
None the less I steeled my heart
against him. It is anew deception," I
thought. "He wishes to hide his love
for her, or be may be mean enough to
to wish to marry me for my fortune."
This state of affairs continued for some
days, until one morning Hugh found me
alone. I had always been an early riser
and, this particular morning being in
tensely hot, even so early as seven, I
took a book and strolled gently towards
my favorite arbor, intending to read
there until the breakfast-bell rang.
The arbor was so hidden by shrub
beries that it could be seen only from a
thicket exactly facing it
To my surprise, some one had reached
it before me. Major Gorden was a great
smoker, and had brought his cigar there,
thinking he would be undisturbed. I
could not turn back now without being
positively rude so I quietly took the
seat he offered me beside himself.
To my great indignation, no sooner
was I seated than he placed his arm
around me in the coolest manner imagin
able, making me rest against him yet
it was so naturally done that it seemed
no more than a cousinly action, and mere
affectation to resent it.
"There now We are comfortable," he
said, throwing away his cigar. "The
early bird is proverbially a fortunate one.
but I am rewarded beyond all my expec
tation. Do you know, Nina this is the
first tete a-tett we have had since I re
turned I have soaroely had an oppor
tunity of telling you how much I find
"For the better, I hope," I remarked,
"Well," he returned, holding back his
head, and pretending to eye me critical
ly, "from a clild you are grown to be al
most a woman—and a tery charming
one, too but I must confess that to me,
personally, you were mere eharmisg as
the child. Two years ago I felt sure of
this little Nina's love. But now—what
am I to say little one
"I don't love' you any less, Cousin
Hugh—and, as a cousin, I shall always
love you." I answered, with a dignified
He spoke very gently in reply.
"But it is not cousinly love that I
want, Nina. Why are you so sadly
charged You will scarcely suffer my
arm around you at this moment, you
have not once kisssed me since I came.
Two years ago you would have done so
without my asking."
His words so bewildered me that I
scarcely knew what I said. Starting to
my feet I exclaimed
"Major Gordon, you must remember
that I am no longer a child. Would it
be maidenly in me to make those advanc
es you mention before the woman who
loves you and whom you love?"
A light seemed suddenly to break up
on his understanding. Holding out his
arms to me, he cried—and, oh, that lov
ing tone could not have been assumed:
"Come back to me, Nina! Come, lit
tle one—oh, how you have been deceiv
I hesitated one moment, andjn that
moment the chance was lost. A rustling
in the syringa-bushes behind the arbor
first startled me, and immediately after
wards Pauline's figure appeared in the
She was flushed and pahting: and a
smile, which she vainly endeavored to
make agreeable, parted her lips.
"I am sorry to disturb you, but there
is a parcel come for you, Major Gordon,
which the bearer is waiting to deliver into
your own hands."
My cousin hesitated, lookingvfrom her
to me, and then quiety placed my arm in
"No, no," said Pauline, quickly, taking
my hand, as if to draw me away, "it is so
hot, Nina and I will follow slowly."
Her look towards me was so malicious
that I involuntary clung closer to Hugh's
arm. He answered by a slight pressure
of the hand he held.
"Excuse* my rudeness, Mademoiselle
d'Esterre," he said, ''but I am anxious to
resume the conversation you were com
pelled to interrupt. My cousin and I
will come after you in a few minutes,
The messenger may, wait.*'
Pauline looked baffled.
"In turn, excuse me, Major Gordon.
NJna, one word in your ear."
As I bent towards her, she wispered,
quickly, "Little stupid, it is your money,
not you, he wants."' With this parting
sting she hurried out of sight.
That long winding path between the
sweet-scented syringa seemed to me the
road to Paridise that morning, as I walk
ed slowly and thoughtfully up to the
house, Hugh's strong arm around me,
while his beloved voice, in low earnest
tones, was telling me the tale of his love
—how he had known Pauline in Paris
some years ago, while I was yet a child
and he too young to know what real true,
love was how he had been fascinated by
her for a time, till he had found how un
worthy she was—till he felt that his love
his child-cousin had grown to be the
hope and aim of his life.
And when, hidden by the laburnums
and lilacs, we halted in the path, and, at
his request, I reached on tip-toe to take
his dear brown head in my hands and
kiss him, as I had done two years ago,
how proud I was at that moment—proud
of my noble, handsome lover.
My joy was a little clouded by the
remembrance that he was compelled to
be absent all that day but, with such
sweet thoughts to bear me company, how
could 1 be dull Even Pauline's spiteful
speeches and innuendoes fell harmless if
she had truly loved Hugh, I could only
feel the deepest pity for her.
She had always slept in the same room
with me. I felt little inclined for her
company that night, though at the same
time I could not easily invent an excuse
for departing from the usual custom so
having undressed in silence, I laid my
happy head upon the pillow, and fell to
dreaming sweet dreams, in which my
lover and I were walking through
endless paths, strewn with roses, and
bordered by golden blossoms.
Suddenly, in the midst of my dreams,
it appeared that a serpent raised itself
from among the crimson roses and hissed
in my ear. I woke with a scream, to find
Pauline standing by the bedside. The
room wa« filled with a singular rosy
light, making every object in the room
as clear as by daylight.
I could not hear distinctly what
she* was saying, but her face aad lips
were ashy white, and her eyes starting
from their sockets.
In another instant her voice pierced
my ear in words that sounded like a pro
"Nina, awake—awake The house is
I raised myself upon my elbow, still
stupified with sleep. I saw her rush
wildly about the room, seizing her jewel
case, her desk—all that she could grasp
that was valuable but I could not rouse
myself—\r seemed still to be in a dream,
though now all was changed and ghastly.
Suddenly Pauline stopped and looked
fixedly at me—it was a singular look,
and I never forgot it. I can recall it now
as plainly and with as horrible distinct
ness as upon that dreadful night. At
first it was a wavering, irresolute ex
pression—she moved half-way toward
me, as if v»ith the intention of rousing
me from my lethargy then halted, anjl
a fixed determination and sternness set
tied upon her features. Once more she
grasped her treasures, then walked bur
rieafy from the room, and I heard the
door close behind her.
This seemed to break the spell that
was upon me. I darted from the bed
and flew to the window. It was a fright
ful scene. To the right of my bedroom
all was in flames. A balcony which ran
along in front of five windows, of which
mine was the centre, had already caught
—such ravages had the fire made before
it was discovered.
Taking all this in at one wild glance,
I sprang to the door. Oh, heaven, it was
locked on the outside!
I shrieked, I raved, I battered at the
door with my feeble strength till my
bands bled but I felt no pain.
Oh Pauline, Pauline, you must have
been mad with terror—you could not
have doomed me to such an awful death!
Once more I flew to the window. The
scene was changed. Nearer and nearer
were creeping those awful tongues of fire,
while below looked up a sea of horror
stricken faces, ghastly in the lurid light.
One figure alone I could distinguish—
that of my lover carrying in his arms a
senseless figure. It was Pauline. Then
her words were true—she was the love of
his heart, and he had flown to her in the
first moment of danger Be it so but
still life was so sweet—so sweet—and I
was so yonng to die!
I stretched out my hands imploringly
"Hugh, Hugh, save me, too! Oh, save
me— do not let me die
My voice, though I could scarcely hear
it myself, it was so hoarse and unnatural,
reached his ears. He turned towards me
with a great cry, and rushed into the
In that one look I read that he would
save me or die.
A strange calm came over me I no
longer shrieked, but, standing erect before
the window, and in the face of the help
less crowd, kept my eyes fixed upon the
door from which was to come my sal
It must have been but a few moments,
though to me it seemed an age, before it
came. I felt Hugh's beloved arms carry
ing me over the hotfloorand down the
stifling stairs. I heard his voice mur
muring, "Thank heaven that. I have
saved you, my precious Nina!" Then all
I was insensible for many days when
I came to, it was to find myself in a
strange room and in a strange house—for
my dear old home had been burnt to the
Pauline had disappeared on the night
of the fire, but some weeks later a note
reached me through the post. It con
tained these brief words:
"You will never see me again, but I
write to tell you that—though I bear you
prompted me to lock your door. Had I
not fainted in the smoke, I should have
returned to set you free at the risk of my
I was glad to receive this letter, and I
hope that Pauline is now abetter and
Scarcely a hair of my head was singed
in the fire. But, alas, my poor Hugh!
Even now there are scars on his dear face
and arms, which I lament over, but
which he glories in as the price of his
LETTER FROM ABROAD.
The Mahomedans consider Ceylon as
the site of the Garden of Eden, and in
proof thereof, show you "Adam's Peak,"
still bearing the impress of his feet as he
sprang from them into the main land,
when driven out by the angel with the
Also "Eve'a apple" tree, or the for*
bidden fruit it is very beautiful to look
at, being orange on the outside and a deep
crimson color within, and singular to say
it presents the appearance of having a
no love 1 am glad that you were savod.s Madris in'one-d^y-twenty-seven snakes
It was the madness of a moment 'that of all descriptions ancf sixes, were killed
one room on the ground floor. Few
persons know of the great destruction to
POINT DB GALLS, June 1,1875.
I must make an attempt, albeit a poor
one, to describe the most curious of
nature's productions, the banyan tree,
and which I now saw for the first time.
Each tree is in itself a grove, and some of
them of an amazing size, as they are con
tinually increasing, for every branch
from the main body throws out its own
roots, which, by a gradual descent, reach
es the ground, where striking in, they in
crease to a large trunk and become a
parent tree, throwing out in their turn
new branches from the top. These in
time suspend their roots, swell into
trunks and shoot forth other branches
thus continuing so long as the first par
ent of them all is in a healthy state
should this be destroyed the whole grove
will decay this, however, scarcely ever
happens, nnless willfully destroyed, as it
is a most durable tree and usually at.
tains to a great age. The leaves are
largo and of a very lively green, the fruit
is a small fig of a bright scarlet color, and
seems to be much relished by the mon
keys, squirrels, peacocks, and birds of
various kinds that dwell among its
branches. The Hindoos are very fond of
this tree and pay it almost divine honors.
They plant it near the "Dewals" or Hindoo
temples, that the Wahmins may meditate
in its sacred groves. I had one described
to me by a person who had seen it. It is
in the province of Gevyzerat and is snp
posed to be the largest in India, and I
will not venture to say how many hun
dred years old. It covers a circumfer
ence of five acres, the trunks, large and
small, number nearly threee thousand.
It has been named the "Cwbbeer Burr,"
in honor of the celebrated Hindoo saint,
and at certain seasons they hold a festival
and offer sacrifices under its branches.
On one of these occasions, seven thousand
persons reposed under its shade.
It is a deadly poi-
pi-ce bitten out of it.
Should you manifest any incredulity as
to the truth of these marvelous state
ments, I can only say wtth the celebrated
Mark Twain, "That the guide told me so,
and he ought to know best." Unhappily
for its inhabitants, Ceylon not only pos
sesses a most gorgeous vegetation, but an
overpowering variety, and abundance of
animal life. The mosquitoes arc the
most adroit and audacious of their kind,
and anew prey is seized on ruthlessly.
If any of my friends wish to study nat
ural history to perfection, I recommend
them to live for a few months in Ceylon.
I would guarantee that they would have
no difficulty in finding sufficient materia],
especially in the reptile line, to fit up a
very respectable museum, and that with
out the necessity of much exertion on
their own part. Some considerate mortal
has planted the streets of Galle with
trees, to protect the pedestrian from the
heat of the sun but they probably did
not foresee that they were furnishing an
admirable resort for numerous specimens
of mosquitoes, flies, bugs, grasshoppers,
catterpillars, Ac, which drop dovn upon
the unlucky wayfarer, many of them re
senting the contact in a most startling
manner. However, as Europeans in the
East rarely use their own feet for the
purpose of locomotion, I suppose it does
not matter so math, and then again use
is said to be a second nature. But to a
new comer, the fact of collecting some
half a dozen species of the insect tribe out
of the hair of the head before retiring to
rest, or upon awakening in the morning
to find that an centepede has taken pos
session of one slipper, while a family of
scorpions are making themselves comfort
able in the other, is, to say the least of it,
deeidedly unpleasant. Of course any at
tempt to shut out the pests of animal life
is hopeless, because, for the sake of air,
doors and windows are formed of Vene
tian lattices, opening to the ground, and,
taking advantage of the openings in these
slight defenses, they make free to enter
the rooms and take up their residence
I was shown one day a large spider of the fin tt'
eat like fog Ty wasn't no bet
tarantula species that had just been kill- ^ter/fadder'n mudder'n 'ou, Vd do wifout
ed, whose legs more than covered a large children!"
size breakfast saucer, and was assured
that it was by no means a large one of its
kind. It is a common thing for the ser
vants to be obliged to light small fires in
the lawns outside, as a counter attraction
W 7TTZ ii»
to the lights within the room, which are
often overpowered ai}d put out by the
swarms of moths and other insects. Even
if you make cool cellars they are not safe
from intrusion. I was told that on one
occasion, ufter a heavy inundation in
human lives effected by wild beasts and
serpents in these densely populated trop
ical regions. The foltowing are copied
from the official reports pf deaths by wild
beasts and serpents in Ceylon and Brit
ish India, for the years 1868,1869, and
1870, viz: Killed by wild beasts, Mad
ray 888,, Bombay 148, .Bengal 674, north
western provinces 2J6& Pimgwab 310,
Ottde 569, Coo'rg 141, central provinces
1,347, Hyderabad 128, British Burmah
107, total of 12,554. Killed by snakes in
these same provinces and towns, the
total is 25,664 and, incredible as it may
seem to us that 38,218human beings have
been killed outright by wild beasts and
snakes, within the short space of three
years on one single continent, yet these
are but the deaths officially reported.
How many hundreds of other deaths hare
taken place from the same causes in iso
lated villages, in dreary swamps and wild
jungles, from whence official reports can
not be obtained. The most dangerous
known are the cobra de capello and the
tripolonga, both of which are common in
India and Ceylon. Unlike the rest of its
tribe the Cobra, tempted probably by
the delicacies of the poultry yard, of
which it is very fond, prefers living near
the habitation of man. In Ceylon it is
remarked that if a cobra is discovered
near a house, its companion is sure to be
found immediately after, as they always
travel in pairs. According to some
writers, it sometimes attains a length of
fifteen feet, but this is unusual, its aver
age size being from two to six feet. The
Cingalese say that the non-poisonous
black snake is a deadly foe to the cobra,
and is usually victorious, contriving to
squeeze the latter to death before he has
time to inflict a wound. The tiepolonga
is even more deadly than the cobra, but
the doctors here tell me that there is no
certain remedy against the bite of either,
but instant amputation otfthe affected
parts. Some persons profess to be very
sagacious on this subject, but I confess to
such an instinctive repugnance to these
reptiles, so to deter me from taking any
further interest in them than that of get*
ting out of their way as fast possible. I
will, however, give you what is said to be
an infallible test between a poisonous
snake and such as are innocuous. You
have only to lay hold of the tail of one of
each description, in order that you may
test their flexibility. The innocuous
snake being able to make his head reach
his tail, so as to be able to bite you,
which it is affirmed the venomous reptile
is unable to accomplish. Perhaps, like
myself, you may prefer taking these very
interesting circumstances on credit,
rather than attempting to verify them by
a personal inspection..
A SERIES OF ASSASSINATIONS.
A terrible story comes from Spain,
which, if true, destroys all hopes of a de
cent government under King Alfonso, and
proves that he is following in the foot
steps of his infamous mother. The facts
as told by the Madrid correspondent of
the Boston Journal are as follows:
"The king and the duke of Sexto have
been corrupting the daughter and wife of
an officer in the army, whose home is the
second or third door from Mr. Cushing's.
He was in the north fighting, but hearing
of the king's frequent visits at his house,
he came suddenly to the city, and enter
ing his home late at night, found the king
and the duke of Sexto in the house he
shot at the king, hut missed him, and was
himself 6hot dead by the duke of Sexto,
who was behind him. The street police
heard the pistol shots, and came running
to their rescue, but were sent about their
business. The body was given to a night
watchman, who carried it nobody knows
where, and is now receiving, it is said,
$400 a month. The maid servant, who
was an eye witness of the murder, disap
peared the next day, some say was assas
sinated. But she had time to tell her*
lorer. When he found she wa3 disposed
of he hid himself for some days, but ven
tured out at last, and was found dead in
the street, stabbed, one morning."
The judge before whom the case of the
first murder would have come, being a
firm and incorruptible man, was murder
ed, and the report given out that he had
committed suicide. None of the papers
dare to comment upon the facts, and the
courts are silent and inactive, although
the story has gone privately from Lisbon
to Barcelona, and there is intense feeling
upon the subject. Several persons have
been hurried off to prison for daring to
talk on the subject. Canovas del Castil
lo, the prime minister, has resigned, and
a radical change has been made in the
ministry in a liberal direction, with the
hope of warding off a revolution. The
young king is said to be surrounded by
those who strive to govern him by pan
dering to his passions, as they did to
those of young Amadens, who was thus
ruined, and the peace of his family de
stroyed. The whole government from
head to foot is pervaded with licentious
ness and corruption.
A little Idaho three-year-old fell into a
well recently, where the water was only
six inches deep, and remained there six
hours before he was discovered. When
he was finally rescued his pent-up wrath
knew no bounds. Here is a sample:
"Ytu fink I kin taj in a well wifout nuf
fin eat likeaa fog??
A DAUGHTER of Hon. Seagrave Smith
was married on the 12th inat. to E. Her
bert Freeman, foreman of the Hastings