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The true love which needs not to be repented of, which endures the refining tests of later life, is thus described by Butler in Hudibras:

All love at first, like generous wine,
Ferments and frets until 'tis fine;
For when 'tis settled on the lee,
And from the impurer matter free,
Becomes the richer still the older,
And proves the pleasanter the colder.

Among the many excellent persons who in advancing age have enjoyed this unfading love was that great lawyer, Lord Chancellor Eldon, who, forty years after his marriage, pays this touching tribute of loving constancy to his wife, Elizabeth :

Can it, my lovely Bessy, be,

That when near forty years are past,
I still my lovely Bessy see

Dearer and dearer at the last ?

Nor time, nor years, nor age, nor care,

Believe me, lovely Bessy, will
Much as his frame they daily wear-

Affect the heart that's Bessy's still.

In Scotland's climes I gave it thee,

In Scotland's climes I thine obtain'd;
Oh! to each other let them be

True, till an heaven we have gain'd.

So true it is, as Campbell sings :-
The spot where love's first links were wound,

That ne'er are riven,
Is hallowed down to earth's profound,

And up to heaven!

For time makes all but true love old;
The burning thoughts that then were told
Run molten still in memory's mould,

And will not cool
Until the heart itself be cold

In Lethe's pool. The poet Milton's father was probably entering on later life when this poem was addressed to him by his son, afterwards the author of “Paradise Lost.”

TO MY FATHER. Oh! that, descending from the two-fold hill, Pieria's fountain would my bosom fill; Through all its depths, in limpid fancy, roll, Blend with my thought and sparkle in my soul: That thus my song might happily aspire From meaner themes to hail my honour'd sire. The muse, thou best of parents ! fain would twine A wreath to crown paternal worth like thine ; The gift, though small, my sire will not refuse; Nor know we how, without the according muse, To find what we may offer—you receive, In fond requital of the love you give, To form the just requital of your love. Poor would the muse with all her offerings proveTo absolve my mighty debt her gifts how vainA tuneful nothing, and a barren strain, But in my numbers all my wealth residesI own no means of recompense besides ; My sole exchequer filled by Clio's smile, The regal maid, who crowns my faithful toil ; Who, as beneath her laurel shade I dream, Visits my slumbers in a golden stream, Nor slight the treasures of the harmonious nine, Who greatly speak the source of man divine,

Show that he caught a sparkle from above;
His breast still glowing with the fire of Jove.
Heaven's ear is charm'd with song ; controlling

With thrilling force dire Tartarus can pierce;
With chains of triple adamant compel
The dusky hosts, and bind the powers of hell.
Verse chants the priestess in the Paphian cave:
Rapt into verse, the pale-eyed sibyls rave.

We, too, when raised to our celestial land,
Where time in one stupendous pause shall stand,
Crown'd with pure gold shall tread the eternal

Attuning to the lyre the numerous strain:
While the pleased stars, that gem the vaulted sky,
Catch the soft tones, and sing in sweet reply :
The guardian Power, who, throned on every

sphere, Wheels the vast orb, and guides its proud career, Pours, as he circles through the starry throng, The unutterable notes of angel song.

* * * * * * * I pass the endearing fatherly caressAnd in the greater kindness lose the less. When by your bounty, sire, the words that hung In strength and sweetness on the Latian tongue, I now had learn'd; and, what even Jove could

The full sonorous accents of the Greek;
Your love, persuasive, press'd me to advance,
And glean the flowers that strew the path of

France :
To win Italia's modern Muse, who shows
The base pollution of barbarian foes;

And read the native-strains of hallow'd lore
Taught by heaven-tutor'd Palestine of yore.
Nor yet content, you led my anxious eye
To scan the circling wonders of the sky;
Of air the lucid secrets to reveal,
And know what earth and ocean's depths conceal,
Thus brought to science, in her inmost seat,
You broke the cloud that veild her last retreat ;

* * * * * * *
Since then, dear sire, my gratitude can find
For all your gifts, no gifts of equal kind :
Since every prouder wish my powers confine-
Accept for all, this fond recording line :
Oh! take the love that strives to be express'd !
Oh! take the thanks that live within my breast!

* * * * * * * *

The far-renowned Madame de Staël, the devoted daughter of M. Necker, died just after her 51st birthday. Shortly before her death she said, “I think I know what the passage is from this life to another; and I feel convinced that God, in His goodness, softens it for us. Our intellect becomes troubled, and the pain is not very great." Her last words were, “My father is waiting for me!-my father is waiting for me!-there--he is calling me!”. This reminds us of Mrs. Hemans' verses on following our departed friends who have gone before us into eternity.

There have been sweet singing voices

In your walks, that now are still ;
There are seats left void in your earthly homes

Which none again may fill.

Soft eyes are seen no more

That made spring-time in your heart;
Kindred and friends are gone before,
And ye still fear to part.
We fear not now, we fear not!

Though the way through darkness bends;
Our souls are strong to follow them,

Our own familiar friends! At the age of fifty-two, on the anniversary of St. George, the tutelar saint of England, died the poet of all time, Shakespeare, to whom his country owes so deep a debt of reverential love.

The day of his death, April 23, 1616, was also his birthday.

The same day was to be ever memorable for the death of Cervantes, who was seventeen years older than Shakespeare. It is one of the most striking things in all history, that two such men as our great dramatist and the author of “ Don Quixote” should at the same time be sinking and expiring on the bed of death. Their closing years had been unlike in external fortune: Shakespeare had lived in calm and dignified retirement, in his native town of Stratford, during four years, wealthy and honoured, as“ gentle Shakespeare, throned in all hearts;" while Cervantes, in Madrid, lingered in poverty and dependence.

In one of Shakespeare's sonnets we have a beautiful picture of the birth of his own wonderful genius and its ascent to the “highmost pitch" of middle age, but that descent to feeble age, described in the closing lines, he was never to endure.

Lo, in the orient when the gracious Light

Lifts up his burning head, each under eye Doth homage to his new-appearing sight,

Serving with looks his sacred majesty;

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