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LTHOUGH the fame of Defoe now rests upon a single work, which is known as the favorite of every enterprising boy who can read the English language, Defoe's labors extended over the field of politics as well as that of literature. He wrote a number of works of fiction, two or three of which pretend to be circumstantial accounts of historical occurrences. Thus, his "Journal of the Great Plague in London " tells the story of that horrible experience with so much detail and apparent faithfulness to truth that it would impose upon any person who was not definitely informed of its fictitious character. Another experiment of this sort is "True Relation of the Apparition of a One Mrs. Veal," which so completely imposed upon the public mind that searching inquiries were instituted to determine its truth, and yet his one object in telling the story was to obtain a market for an otherwise dull and unsalable book, and by this means the whole edition of "Drelincourt in Debt" was successfully disposed of. But it was as a political writer that Defoe was most famous in his own time, and in 1702 he published a pamphlet called "The Shortest Way with the Dissenters," in which he stated the sentiments of the extreme High-church Englishmen with brutal candor, proposing to hang the Dissenting ministers and banish the people. When the House of Commons pronounced the pamphlet a libel, and sentenced him to the pillory, he coolly wrote his "Ode to the Pillory," describing it as


"The Hieroglyphic state machine,
Condemned to punish fancy in."

"The True-born Englishman," a poem defending William of Orange against the prejudices of the English public, was so popular that eighty thousand copies were sold in the streets of London. During his long imprisonment on account of "The Shortest Way with the Dissenters," he used his time by writing a number of books. After his release he was taken into the service of the government, and received a pension. He energetically promoted the union of England and Scotland, living in Edinburgh for several years for this purpose, where his unpopularity was so great that his life was really in danger. The large number of his political tracts are now of no interest, and he will continue to be known as the immortal author of "Robinson Crusoe." This delightful book is one of the few that some

how seem to have embodied an essential element of interest. The second part is quite inferior, being merely an attempt to reap a harvest from the great popularity of the first, but of this, a very large majority of English-speaking people will say with Dr. Johnson, that "Nobody ever laid it down without wishing it were longer."


It was published in 1719, and was so extraordinarily successful that Defoe was induced to write numerous other stories of a somewhat similar character. He was, in all, the author of two hundred and ten books and pamphlets. His style is admirably simple and his English pure and unpretending. He was the inventor of the leading article, or the newsletter of weekly comment on current affairs, and possessed quite a modern instinct in the art of advertising. When the infamous Jack Sheppard was condemned, Defoe wrote his "Life," and induced the highwayman, standing under the gallows, to send for a copy and deliver it as his last speech and dying confession.


Defoe was the son of a London butcher. His name was origi

nally Foe, and it was not until about his fortieth year that he changed his signature from D. Foe to Defoe. He was educated for a minister, but decided not to enter that profession, and was at two periods of his life unsuccessfully engaged in busiHe died in 1731, at the age of seventy.





T happened one day about noon, going we fear-nay, even tremble at the apprehension toward my boat, I was exceedingly sur- of. This was exemplified in me at this time in prised with the print of a man's naked the most lively manner imaginable: for I, whose foot on the shore, which was very plain to be seen only affliction was that I seemed banished from in the sand: I stood like one thunder-struck, or human society; that I was alone, circumscribed. as if I had seen an apparition: I listened, I by the boundless ocean, cut off from mankind, looked round me, I could hear nothing, nor see and condemned to what I call a silent life; that anything; I went up to a rising ground to look I was as one whom Heaven thought not worthy to farther; I went up the shore, and down the shore, be numbered among the living, or to appear among but it was all one, I could see no other impression the rest of his creatures; that to have seen one of but that one: I went to it again to see if there my own species would have seemed to me a raiswere any more, and to observe if it might not be ing me from death to life, and the greatest blessmy fancy; but there was no room for that, for ing that Heaven itself, next to the supreme blessing there was exactly the very print of a foot-toes, of salvation, could bestow; I say, that I should heel, and every part of a foot. How it came now tremble at the very apprehension of seeing a thither I knew not, nor could in the least imagine. man, and was ready to sink into the ground at But after innumerable fluttering thoughts, like a but the shadow or silent appearance of a man's man perfectly confused, and out of myself, I came having set his foot on the island! home to my fortification, not feeling, as we say, the ground. I went on, but terrified to the last degree, looking behind me at every two or three steps, mistaking every bush and tree, and fancying every stump at a distance to be a man; nor is it possible to describe how many various shapes an affrighted imagination represented things to me in; how many wild ideas were formed every moment in my fancy, and what strange, unaccountable whimsies came into my thoughts by the way.

When I came to my castle, for so I think I called it ever after this, I fled into it like one pursued; whether I went over by the ladder, at first contrived, or went in at the hole in the rock, which I called a door, I can not remember; for never frighted hare fled to cover, or fox to earth, with more terror of mind than I to this


How strange a chequer-work of Providence is the life of man! And by what secret differing springs are the affections hurried about, as differing circumstances present! To-day we love what to-morrow we hate; to-day we seek what to-morrow we shun; to-day we desire what to-morrow

Such is the uneven state of human life; and it afforded me a great many curious speculations afterward, when I had a little recovered my first surprise. I considered that this was the station. of life the infinitely wise and good providence of God had determined for me; that as I could not foresee what the ends of divine wisdom might be in all this, so I was not to dispute his sovereignty, who, as I was his creature, had an undoubted right by creation to govern and dispose of me absolutely as he thought fit; and who, as I was a creature who had offended him, had likewise a judicial right to condemn me to what punishment he thought fit; and that it was my part to submit to bear his indignation, because I had sinned against him.

I then reflected that God, who was not only righteous, but omnipotent, as he had thought fit thus to punish and afflict me, so he was able to deliver me; that if he did not think fit to do it, it was my unquestioned duty to resign myself absolutely and entirely to his will: and, on the other hand, it was my duty also to hope in him, pray to him, and quietly to attend the dictates. and directions of his daily providence.

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ALTER SCOTT was a born teller of stories. It mattered very little whether he was talking to his delighted mates in the Edinburgh High School, or writing "The Lady of the Lake," or "Waverly," or "The Life of Napoleon," still he was simply telling stories for the pleasure of audiences which went on increasing more and more, until he became the writer of English most universally read, a distinction which he now probably shares only with Dickens. Scott was born in Edinburgh in 1771. His father was a man of standing as an attorney, and after studying at the High School the son entered the father's office as a clerk, and was called to the bar in 1792. He was a sturdy boy, of great strength and endurance, particularly as a pedestrian, although an accident had made him lame from childhood. When he was eighteen years old he became sheriff of Selkirkshire, which office yielded him an income of £300 a year.


He was married in 1797 to Miss Margaret Carpenter, the daughter of a French refugee, and the story of their early married life in their cottage at Lasswade, on the banks of the Esk, is a delightful picture of domestic happiness. In 1802 he published "The Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border," which gave him considerable reputation as a historical poet. In 1803 he came to the final resolution of quitting his profession, observing, "There was no great love between us at the beginning, and it pleased Heaven to decrease it on further acquaintance." In 1805 he published "The Lay of the Last Minstrel," which was composed at the rate of a canto a week, and for which he obtained £600. In 1808 appeared his "Marmion," which he sold for 1000, the extraordinary success of which induced him, he says, for the first and last time of his life, to feel something approaching to vanity. This was succeeded by an edition of Dryden's works, in eighteen volumes, with notes historical and explanatory, and a life of the author. In 1810 he composed his "Lady of the Lake," which was a great success, and which has

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