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not like to be laughed at, especially when he is cross,” thought he; so he suppressed his joke; and it requires some self-denial even to suppress a joke.
During breakfast, his father promised that if the weather continued fine, Harry should ride out before dinner on the grey pony. Harry was much delighted with this proposal, and the thought of it occurred to him very often during the business of the morning. The sun shone cheerily in at the parlour windows, and seemed to promise fair for a fine day. About noon, however, it became rather cloudy, and Harry was somewhat startled to perceive a few large drops upon the flag-stones in the court; he equipped himself, nevertheless, in his great coat at the time appointed, and stood playing with his whip in the hall, waiting to see the horses led out. His mother now passing by, said, “My dear boy, I am afraid there can be no riding this morning ; do you see that the stones are te wet?”
“Dear mother,” said Harry, "you surely do not imagine that I am afraid of a few drops of rain ; besides, I don't believe it rains at all now.” “ It seems to me to be coming up very heavy from the south," said his mother. “It will be no more than a shower at any rate,” replied Harry. Just then his father came in, who looked first at the clouds, then at the barometer, then at Harry, and shook his head. “You intend to go, papa, don't you?" said Harry.
“I must go, I have business to do ; but I believe, Harry, it will be better for you to stay at home this morning,” said his father.
“But, sir," repeated Harry, “ do you think it possible now, that this little sprinkling of rain could do me the least harm in the world, with my great coat, and all ?” “Yes, Harry,” said his father, “I do think that this sprinkling of rain may do you harm, as you have not been quite well. I think, too, it will be more than a sprinkling. But you shall decide on this occasion for yourself. I know you have some self-command. I shall only tell you that your going this morning would make
mother uneasy, and that we both think it improper ;—now determine.”
Harry again looked at the clouds—at the stones—at his boots ; and, last of all, at his kind mother, and then he recollected himself. “ This,” thought he, “is the best opportunity for self-denial that I have had to-day;" and he immediately ran out to tell Roger that he need not saddle the grey pony.
“ I should like another half, I think, mother,” said Frank, that day at dinner, just as he had dispatched a large hemisphere of mince-pie.
“Any more for you, my dear Harry ?” said his mother. “If you please-no, thank you, though," said Harry, withdrawing his plate, “ for,” thought he, “I have had enough, and more than enough to satisfy my hunger : and now is the time for self-denial.”
“Brother Harry,” said his little sister, after dinner, “when will you show me how to do that pretty puzzle ? you said you would, a long time ago."
“I am busy now, child,” said Harry—“ don't tease me now, there's a good girl.” She said no more, but looked disappointed, and still hung upon her brother's chair. “Come, then,” said he, suddenly recollecting himself ; “ bring me your puzzle ;” and, laying down his book, he very good-naturedly showed his little sister how to place it.
That night when the two boys were gone to bed, Harry called to mind, with some complacency, the several instances in the course of the day in which he had succeeded in exercising selfdenial ; and he was on the very point of enumerating them to his brother Frank. “But no,” thought he ; “here is another opportunity still of denying myself ; I will not say a word about it ; besides, to boast of it, would spoil all.”
So Harry laid down quietly, making the following sage reflections :-“This has been a pleasant day to me ; although I have had one great disappointment in it, and done several things against my will. I find that self-denial is painful for the moment, but very agreeable in the end. If I go on this plan every day, I shall stand a good chance of having a happy life ; for life is made up of days and hours, and it will be just as pleasant and as easy ; but here Harry's thoughts began to wander, and soon became quite indistinct. In fact, he was sound asleep before he had half finished his reflections ; the remainder must be supplied by the reader.
One of them will, doubtless, be this—that self-denial is no sinecure virtue ; nor one which may be reserved for a few occasions in life; but that it is wanted every day, and every hour, that is, as often as we are tempted to self-indulgence.
Contributions of Q.Q.
THE ENGLISH AND AMERICAN CIVIL WARS.
GOLDWIN SMITH. We are all taking, on the question of this great civil war in America, nearly the same side which we should have taken in our own civil war in the time of Charles I., excepting, perhaps, a portion of the tradesmen, who in those days had strong convictions, but who in these days have no very strong convictions, and take the side of the South party, because they fancy it to be genteel. That civil war was marked in its course by nearly the same vicissitudes as this. The Commons, superior in numbers, in wealth, and the material of war, fell with overweening confidence on the Cavaliers. But the Cavaliers had at first the advantage in military spirit and in the habit of command; while the retainers whom br ght into the field ere better trained to obey. Edge Hill was not unlike Bull's Run. One wing of the Parliamentary army galloped off the field without striking a blow; and Clarendon declares that, though the battle began on an autumn afternoon, runaways, and not only common soldiers but officers of rank, were in St. Alban's before dark. Then followed despondency as deep as the previous self-confidence had been high and boastful. Overtures were made to the king ; and Pym and Hampden, the “rabid fanatics” of that day, had great difficulty in preventing a surrender. Nor was treason wanting, in camp or council, to complete the parallel. Still darker days followed ; and when the king sat down before Gloucester, the friends of “ Slavery, Subordination, and Government,” at that time, must have felt as sure of victory as they did when General Lee was approaching the heights of Gettysburg. But our Puritan fathers had the root of greatness in them; and, therefore, they were chastened, not crushed, by adversity. Necessity brought the right men to the front, and gave the ascendancy in council to those who were fighting for a principle, and who knew their own minds. The armies, which at first were filled with tapsters and servingmen, were recruited from the yeomen, of whom, with their small estates, there were plenty in Old England ; but who, since the soil of Old England has become the property of a few wealthy men, have found another home in the New. The moderate commanders, who did not mean to win, gave way to commanders who did. Treason was trodden out, and disunion quelled. There was no more boastfulness, no more despondency, but stern resolution. The Commons measured their work, settled down to it, and won. We deem that struggle heroic, and feel a mournful pride on looking back on it; but you cannot be familiar with its history, if you do not know that it had its wicked, its mean, even its ridiculous, as well as its heroic phase ; or think it impossible that, when removed by the lapse of centuries from close inspection, the struggle which we have been just watching may appear quite as grand.
Let me then ask you to consider whether in that storm-tossed vessel, which, with straining planks, and in imminent danger of wreck, has been holding her course against wind and sea, there may not be embarked, as I firmly believe there is, something in which humanity has an interest, and which no man but a very narrowminded member of a privileged order or church would willingly see perish. I only ask you to consider whether in the course of providence it may not have been given to the peasant founders of New England, as well as to the followers of Hengist or Clovis, to open a new order of things, not without benefit to large classes to whom the old order of things had not been so kind ; and whether, if this be the case, an attempt on the part of those who profit by the old order of things violently to crush the new order, lest by its success it should ultimately imperil the continuance of the old, would not have been rather selfish, and even rather unsafe.
But I suspect that the arguments ordinarily made use of on this question, affect the minds of the majority of the Tory party little more than they affect ours. It is not a legal theory as to the rights of States under the American Constitution—it is not a speculative view as to the differences of character and interest between the people of Richmond and the people of Washington—it is not admiration of the Southerners, of whom, so long as they remained in the Union, nothing was too abominable to be believed—it is not a desire to bestow on Central America the blessings of separate nationalities and the balance of power—it is not a romantic affection for Free Trade, and a passionate abhorrence of Protection—it is not a newly-born, though laudable sense of the wickedness of fighting for empire—it is not an enthusiasm, if not newly-born, new in its intensity, for the cause of insurgent nations—it is not a fear lest slavery should be extinguished in any
manner but the most statesmanlike and the most conducive to the highest interests of the negro :—it is not any one of these things, nor the whole of them put together, that has kindled among
the reactionary party in this country a passionate and almost frantic excitement of feeling, such as has not been witnessed among the same party since the war against the French Revolution ; that has caused the special organs of these classes in the press actually to foam with fury, and to forget the interests as well as the duties of journalism, in their attempts to keep on a level with the passions of their readers ; that has made the legislators of a great maritime and commercial country, hail with loud cheers, the success of a precedent, rendering every neutral port a basis of operations for our enemy in time of war; that has incited members of the British House of Peers to stand forth publicly and avow themselves leaders of a league, having for its object the
disruption” of a friendly nation, allied by recent treaties, and bound by common objects of public morality to our own ; that has thrown the Conservative party in this country into the arms of the Democratic mob of New York ; and that has led men careful of their character to face the finger of suspicion, which will always be pointed at the aristocratic allies of the slave-owning aristocracy of the South. History will not mistake the meaning of the loud cry of triumph, which burst from the hearts of all who openly or secretly hated liberty and progress, at the fall, as they fondly supposed, of the Great Republic. How senseless that cry was, how absurdly mistaken they who raised it were, in thinking that the rupture between Slavery and Free Labour was the effect of republican institutions, and betokened their ruin, matters little ; the source of the joy which rang out in it was not doubtful. It has sunk now to a lower and less jubilant tone. The Commonwealth, the first hour of weakness being past, has put forth a power and displayed resources, which have astonished not only her enemies, but her friends; and it seems as though, after one bright glimpse of hope for Slavery, the spirit of Freedom were about to prevail in the world once more.
Letter to a Whig Member.