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obstinate? Just consider the consequences a little-you know what the galleys are; you know what department of them you would be sent to. Instead of all that, you may have your liberty, and," said the inspector, pausing, "as I am a good-natured fellow, here is five hundred francs," placing a bundle of billets de banque on the table.
"You know," said Eugène, "my liberty would not last long if I complied with your request. I would be found in the Seine in a week, and the five hundred francs would not be of much use in the Morgue."
"Silly fellow!" said the gensdarme. not thought of that.
"Do you suppose I had If I did not know that, to a certainty, you Paris, do you think I would offer you liberty? You, Eugene Bazas? No; I love Paris too well to turn out on her streets a wild beast like you!"
would be assasinated in
Bazas stared with astonishment.
"Don't look so surprised, my dear fellow; I an quite serious in the proposal I made to you; quite certain, that within a fortnight you would be assinated in Paris, and nevertheless sure that you will accept my offer."
"There is no use," said Bazas, doggedly, "punishing me before my time. Allons, let us go. I will not speak another word."
"Not at present, Eugène Bazas, because I don't wish it, but in a day or two we will have all we wish out of you; and another little matter, by-the-bye, which I had almost forgotten. Can you tell me where your brother Leon is at present? He was, you know, valet to Sir Philip Warden, and conducted himself very well when with that gentleman.
Eugène did not reply.
"Well," said the inspector," that is nearly all I have to say. We understand each other except in one little matter which has escaped your perspicuity. Paris is not the whole world; you would be tolerably safe if sent to America or Australia, and once there, after you have done the State the little services required of you, I know you will not venture back to Paris."
A gleam of intelligence passed over Bazas's face. The inspector was victorious.
'I thought so!" said he complacently. "You will be so kind as accompany me and this gentleman--a cab waits for us at the door. But before going let us show ourselves at the salon, and make our congé like gentlemen.'
The three returned accordingly to the table. Darcy knew not whether to admire most the affectionate and intimate manner of the inspector to Bazas, or the cool sang-froid of the latter gentleman.
During his absence he had been lucky. He had gained one thousand francs.
"Take up your money, Eugène," said the inspector," and tempt the fickle goddess no more to-night. Let us go home."
"With all my heart," said Bazas. "I must keep my head clear, as I have to see the governor to-morrow. Adieu, gentlemen. Au révoir, next night."
"Bravo!" said the inspector, as they went down stairs arm-in. arm. "You are not so harmless as I thought, Eugene; and had I not made a bargain, I believe I would have kept you, and taken my own measures to catch your friends; but I am a man of my word; you will come home with me. You will be well treated, get a good dinner and fair wine every day, and it will not take above a week to get everything you have to say reduced into writing, and verified by a few testing facts, which will correct any inaccuracy of memory to which gentlemen of your lively imagination, my dear Eugène, are liable."
SHORT PAPERS ON MANY SUBJECTS.
BY DR. ALFRED J. H. CRESPI.
OLD AGE.-Mrs. Charles commences one of her charming and popular works with the following quaint sentence, “No one, who has not tried, can imagine what a pleasant thing it is to be, undeniably and consciously, an old woman; I mean literally, not symbolically." She might have added that there was also some. thing delightful in being an old man, if, when approaching the dark, unknown life lying beyond the tomb, he could confidently look back on a well-spent, an useful, a happy career.
Old age is not always a disease-the repulsive and untrue defini. tion of it I once remember reading. Generally speaking, no doubt, it is not as pleasant as the morning of life. The infirmities it brings with it; the gaps it finds in the circle of one's friends; the painful prospect of soon wandering forth all alone into the gloomy, the awful future, where there will be no loving hand to grasp, no light to cheer, are terrible. Yet, if the old man or woman has gone through life nobly and uprightly; if, to take the place of the many who are gone, fresh faces cluster around; if sweet smiles from the young make less bitter the loss of those loving glances which the grave has taken to itself; if, above all, there is firm reliance on that merciful God, who will never neglect, never forsake His children-why, then, old age will have joys of its own and the closing hours may be as bright, as peaceful as those fardistant ones, when, hopefully and confidently, the heat and burden of the morning were encountered and borne.
Not less beautiful the calm glorious sunset of a night in June than the brilliant sunrise which, sixteen hours before, had brought joy and hope to all whose eyes were gladdened by it. Not less beautiful, I venture to think, the peaceful sinking to rest of the aged man or woman over whose head have passed the experience, the vicissitudes, the joys and the sorrows of eighty long years, and whose happy and tranquil evening is a fitting sequel to the hopes, and trials, and disappointments of the unclouded morning, than was that fair and promising morning itself.
THE FEAR OF DEATH." He was a brave man and did not fear death :" a sentence something like this I have many times
read, especially in second-rate novels. Could the writersch known what one, at least, of their readers thought of them and their brave man they would not have felt flattered.
A brave man is not one whose animal courage makes him indifferent to danger just because he cannot comprehend the nature of that which he is encountering. He is one who, though the sense of duty enables him to go heroically through dangers, and even prompts him to sacrifice his life, understands what he is doing and weighs well its cost. He may face death, but does he not fear death? Does he not think of the friends whom he may soon leave for ever, of those fair scenes in the midst of which he has been happy, of those hopes not yet realised, of those sins not yet atoned for? Does he, too, not think of the life beyond the grave, of that mighty God whom he is about to see face to face, and at whose hands he will so soon receive his sentence? He may hold the broadest views, religious and political; but when he can almost hear the rustling of the wings of the Angel of Death he must have little true courage if he can avoid a shudder.
The more cultured, imaginative, and sensitive the nature of the man the greater the probability that the approach of death will try to the uttermost the courage, which, however, can only exist where these qualities are present. The heroism of nervous, thoughtful men, when they voluntarily and for the sake of others, place themselves in the post of greatest peril is what no ordinary person can comprehend. "Greater love can no man show than that a man should give his life for his friend." Greater courage can no
man show than to face death, calmly and hopefully, though know. ing all he is about to lose, all that may await him. Then, whatever may be said about the certainty of the approach of death, some time or another, and the little difference it makes whether it comes at twenty or at ninety-for come it must before very long - the feeling that the grave is opening its portals to receive him might well fill the heart of the bravest with dread, and make him desert the post of duty and of peril. There never was a truly brave man who did not fear death; there have been many cowards, who, because incapable of understanding their meaning, have been indifferent to death and danger.
"MISERRIMUS."-In the beautiful cloisters of Worcester Cathedral, close to the door leading into the nave, is a tombstone with one Latin word engraved upon it-" Miserrimus "—in English, 66 most wretched."
There appears to be no other record of the life of the unhappy
being who slumbers beneath. His age, his country, his history, his sorrows are apparently all unknown. Conjectures are unavailing. The veil will never more be lifted from the sorrowful record of that blighted and hopeless existence.
Poets, moralists, essayists, and divines have wondered who is buried there; but no answer comes from the tomb. The indifferent, the hard-hearted, the stupid, are startled as they read that one sad, ominous word, which keeps alive the remembrance of a life of sorrow which even the grave could not contain.
All we know, all we probably ever shall know, is that, in the venerable cloisters of Worcester, long centuries ago, was buried some one, cleric or layman we know not, the history of whose life is summed up in that one dreadful word—" miserrimus."
It may sound harsh to say so, but it seems to me wrong that the cathedral authorities allowed that word to be placed on the tombstone in the first place. No one with an atom of feeling in his nature can pass that spot without being made wretched and gloomy, though he cannot know the sins and temptations of the poor creature, who lies there. No moral can be conveyed, it seems to me, to anyone by that word, for all context has been swept away. Did we know more, perhaps, instead of making us uselessly wretched that tombstone might teach us an impressive and useful lesson. It might tell us that the wages of sin is sorrow and retribution; it might help to keep some from wandering into the dark paths of crime and vice. As it is, a visit to that spot, so cold and gloomy, only fills the heart with pity for an erring brother, who, of one flesh with us, is as little known to us as if he had lived and died on one of the most distant planets. There is, in my opinion, no sadder spot on earth than the cloisters of Worcester.
WOMEN'S RIGHTS.-It appears singular to me that the advo cates of women's rights-that is to say, the persons who claim for women, not only the freedom to enter all the professions and callings open to men, but who assert the inherent intellectual equality of the sexes, and who support these pretensions by trying to prove that women have the same abilities and powers as men-generally forget how few really distinguished women there have been. Of course some persons deny the truth of the above statement, and, in that case, agreement between the disputants is impossible. But a more formidable plea is that often urged, that, though the finest female intellects are inferior to those of their rivals, there is a much higher average of ability among women than men. This means that, though there are no lady Miltons and Voltaires,