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entertainment of the young) will be answered, she feels doubtful; yet it may be safely said, that should “Conrad Blessington" not contain any thing to edify, at least the perusal will not be found to inculcate injurious sentiments.
We have no parents; and no friends beside:
IT was a beautiful spring morning; the resplendent beams of the sun imparted an air of cheerfulness, to which the delicate yet dazzling green of the young leaves failed not to contribute. The birds chirped merrily among the branches, as they trimmed their plumes in the genial rays; and the loud hum of the wild bee was frequently borne upon the air, as it flew past in quest of the early flowers. In fact, it was one of those balmy mornings, of which our variable climate affords but so few - so very few - examples. The situation, to which we desire the kind
reader to attend us, is one of peculiar but modest beauty. A small retired hamlet lay in a deep hollow, through which flowed a stream, whose pebbly bed was distinctly visible through its translucent waters. The sides of the dell were thickly fringed with wood, in various gradations of verdure. There, might be seen the chestnut in its full summer dress, the sycamore and lime just revealing their glories, while the noble oak, diffident as yet of the blandishments of the season, still stretched his naked branches in the breeze. The village, to which we must now turn, was built on the banks of the brawling brook, over which was thrown a rustic bridge. The church, a small Gothic structure, stood half concealed by trees, and “pointed its taper spire to heaven,” in modesty and peace; near which rose the Parsonage, a neat unpretending edifice.
“ What a heavenly morning!" said Mr. Yorke to his lady, as they crossed the bridge towards the hamlet; “how nature seems to rejoice in the early sunbeams! What greater proof of the certainty of regeneration can we have, than the return of this most delightful season?”
6. What indeed !” returned Mrs. Yorke: 6 the spring, to me, is certainly the most welcome part of the year; it seems to diffuse a happy influence on all around.”
“ I think, my dear, you will except our good friend the Rector from that assertion; his countenance testifies considerable mental distress. Why, how now, Camden ?” he continued, addressing that gentleman, as he came up; “ what is the matter? Fanny and I were just moralising on the contented appearance of every thing in this spot; when you present yourself, with a face that would do credit to dark despair itself. What can have driven you into the dolefuls ?”
“ Indeed, Yorke," said Mr. Camden, as he saluted his friends, “ you would be doleful, if you had been doing and seeing what I have. I was coming to the Grove, to consult you on the subject of my uneasiness.”
“ To make me as miserable as yourself, I suppose,” returned Mr. Yorke, laughing.
“ By no means: endeavouring to be useful to your fellow creatures must impart a feeling of satisfaction, although the business may
make you grave. I know both you and Mrs. Yorke
well enough, to feel assured you will assist me in the present case. But, perhaps, you are going on some business to the farm now; if so, I will call upon you in the evening.”
“ No, indeed," said Mrs. Yorke; "a walk was our only object.”
“ In that case, I shall not disturb your plan much, for I wish you to accompany me to Mrs. Dickson's; and, as we go along, I will explain my reasons for wishing you to do so, if you please.” “ Willingly, my good friend.
I am quite anxious to know what can have arisen so important.”
“ Your curiosity shall soon be satisfied; for you must understand, that about ten days since, a lodging was engaged at Mrs Dickson's, by a young female, about twenty years of age, who, with two little children, and a maid servant, took immediate possession of it.
Two days after, she was seized with a brain fever, which, despite the prompt attendance of Dr. Campbell, put a period to her existence at two o'clock this morning; leaving the poor infants (for they are not yet twelve months old) totally unprovided for; as the sum she had by her, I fear, will