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have no longer like a child but like a man. I then repeated, in the English translation, some of the finest descriptions of the heroes of Homer, summing all up with the following stanzas :—

"Fierce Ajax led the Locrian squadrons on,
Ajax the less, Oïleus' valiant son;
Skill'd to direct the flying dart aright;
Swift in pursuit, and active in the fight.

"The proud Mycenè arms her martial powers,
Cleonè, Corinth, with imperial towers;

Great Agamemnon rules the numerous band,
And crowded nations wait his dread command.
Proud of his host, unrivall'd in his reign,

In silent pomp he moves along the main.

"Next eighty barks the Cretan king commands, Of Gnossus, Lyctus, and Gortyna's bands,

These march'd, Idomeneus, beneath thy care,

And Merion, dreadful as the God of war.

"From Practius' stream, Percoté's pasture lands,
And Sestos and Abydos' neighbouring strands,
From great Arisba's walls and Sellé's coast,
Asius Hyrtacides conducts his host:

High on his car he shakes the flowing reins,
His fiery coursers thunder o'er the plains.'

Pope's Homer's Iliad.

"He listened with considerable attention, and then replied, But Mr. Gisborne once said to dear mamma, before poor mamma went to heaven;' and then he sighed, and a brilliant flush rose in his cheeks, not unlike a rosy cloud passing over a fine landscape,' that a certain chapter in the Hebrews contained a more noble list of great and glorious men than ever could be found in all the fine heathen writers together.'

"What chapter?' said I, startled at such a reply from my little auditor.

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"O!' said the little boy, that pretty chapter in the Hebrews.'

"I might have said, 'What do I know of the Hebrews?' but that would have been confessing my ignorance; I therefore contented myself with remarking, If the chapter is so admirable, I suppose you can repeat it?'

"I think I can remember part of it,' said the little boy, for mamma made me learn it at the time.'

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"Part of it then,' I said, let me hear part of it, if

it is so very fine.' You may be sure this was said in no good humour; for though I did not doubt the goodness of my own cause, yet I felt that my little adversary had more to say for himself than I had at first expected.

"And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets; who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: and others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover, of bonds and imprisonment: they were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheep-skins and goat-skins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.' ―(Hebrews xi. 32-40.)


It was impossible for me, after having heard this quotation from the Hebrews, this exquisitely simple and beautiful enumeration of the sufferings and triumphs of the holy men of old, not to feel that I had never read any thing in the classical writings of antiquity equally touching. Nevertheless, I was in no humour to give up the contest, because I had been baffled in a single instance: I therefore replied, that I thought the quotation very pleasing, but little to our present purpose; and the sun at that moment just darting his rays upon us from behind a cloud, I took occasion from thence to bring forward, in the translation of Dryden, that fine description of the sun, and his progress through the heavens, which is found in the first Georgic, again expressing my regret that my little companion, by his ignorance of Latin, should be rendered incapable of reading such choice passages in the original.

"Through twelve bright signs Apollo guides
The year, and earth in several climes divides;
Five girdles bind the skies: the torrid zone
Glows with the passing and repassing sun;
Far on the right and left, the extremes of heaven,
To frosts and snows and bitter blasts are given;
Betwixt the midst and these, the gods assign'd
Two habitable seats for human kind,

And, 'cross their limits, cut a sloping way,
Which the twelve signs in beauteous order sway.
Two poles turn round the globe; one seen to rise
O'er Scythian hills, and one in Libyan skies;
The first sublime in heaven, the last is whirl'd
Below the regions of the nether world.
Around our pole the spiry Dragon glides,
And, like a winding stream, the Bears divides,
The less and greater, who by Fate's decree
Abhor to dive beneath the northern sea.'

"The child looked earnestly at me while I was repeating this quotation, and then said, 'By Apollo, aunt Ellen, do you mean the sun?'

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Yes, I said. Do you not know that Apollo was said by the ancients to have been the charioteer of the sun, and to drive the sun in his course through the heavens every day?'

"He made me no answer for a minute, and then replied-O! now I understand what is meant by the signs and the girdles.'

"And do you not think, Alfred,' I asked, 'that these verses are very beautiful, and should you not like to read them in their original language?'

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Yes,' he replied: but if I had not learned about the zones and the signs in the zodiac, and the poles, I should not have understood them.'

"But you understand them now, Alfred?' I asked. "Yes,' he said, 'some parts of them; but I can make out those verses in the Bible about the sun much better, and I like them much better.'

"Indeed,' I said, 'and why so?'

"To this he made no reply, for he had stooped down to pick up some pebbles: but I was resolved to make him speak, and therefore desired him to repeat these same verses, which he thought so fine.

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In Hebrew, aunt Ellen,' he replied, blushing at the same time in a very pretty manner, I cannot repeat them.'

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'Well,' I said, then let us have them in English. You know that I gave you my quotation in English.' "He then without hesitation repeated the first part of the nineteenth Psalm; which, although so well known by those to whom this letter is addressed, I cannot deny myself the pleasure of giving at full length in this place.

"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handy-work. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race. His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.'

"While the little boy was repeating this beautiful passage, I blushed, and was utterly confounded. To be so overcome by a babe was what I could not bear: I really felt indignant, and looked at the child to see if he were conscious of his victory; but, so far from that being the case, it seemed as if he had already forgotten the subject of our discourse, for having picked up some pebbles, he was now making ducks and drakes, as the children call them, in a smooth part of the brook, unmindful at the instant, not only of the sun himself, but of all things under him, excepting of the circles in the water made by his pebbles. So young, I thought, so truly childlike, and yet possessing a mind so clear, so luminous!-how is this? This child has been educated in no ordinary way. Was I his equal at his age? Am I even his equal now, although my education has been thus laboured? Can this be the effect of studying the Holy Word, simply and continually pursued from childhood? I knew not how to answer these questions, which had thus suggested themselves to my mind and excited many uneasy thoughts. I walked on, and took the way directly leading to the valley of the water nymph, and having conducted my little companion through a shadowy and intertangled copse on the bank of the rivulet, we passed between two small hills into a narrow valley, where the tender herbage, enamelled with a thousand

flowers, and the high and rugged rocks on each side, forming natural grottoes, through whose cool recesses trickled several pellucid streams of extraordinary coldness, suggested I know not what ideas of calm repose and untroubled solitude:

"Here,' said I to the little boy, here formerly dwelt the Ondine of whom I before spoke; and if you were to ask the country people round about, they would tell you a thousand traditions of her having attracted various persons to this spot by the charms of her voice, and then betrayed them into unknown snares and perils.'

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"The little boy smiled. 'Ah, aunt Ellen,' he said, 'you should not speak against fairy-tales and fables, for love them very much: you have told me nothing else since we came out.'


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And does your tutor never tell you fairy-tales or fables?' I replied.

"He often talks to me, when we walk, about my Hebrew: he made me begin with the Psalms, and he tries to make me understand the types and emblems contained in the Bible.'

"And pray what are these?' I said.

"He looked at me again with some curiosity, and then smiled; but without answering my question he asked, Shall I call the Ondine, and hear if she will answer me?' and, without waiting my reply, he exclaimed, in a loud voice, Lady of the woods or waters, whichever you be, you will surely answer me if you hear my voice.'

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"The echo replied, at five different times, each repetition being more remote and soft than the last,' Hear voice.'



I do! I do!' said the child, laughing heartily, and clapping his hands: and then turning to me, 'There, aunt Ellen, there now; what do you think of that?The lady answers me!'

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"I think,' said I, that she must be no very dull lady who can answer you, Master Alfred;' and taking a little narrow path which wound its secret course up the side of the little valley of the water nymph, I went musing on, while my nephew followed me.

"I began, during this walk, for the first time, to en

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