xt7cc24qk05z https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7cc24qk05z/data/mets.xml Tautphoeus, Jemima Montgomery, Baroness, 1807-1893. 1858  books b92-165-30098797v1 English B. Tauchnitz, : Leipzig : Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Quits  : a novel / by the Baroness Tautphoeus. (vol. 1) text Quits  : a novel / by the Baroness Tautphoeus. (vol. 1) 1858 2002 true xt7cc24qk05z section xt7cc24qk05z 







A NOVEL.


  BY



THE BARONESS



TAUTPHOEUS,



  AUTHOR OF it THE EgITJALS."



    COPYPJGHT EDITIONJ


I N T W 0 V 0 L U M E S.

       VOL. I.




    LEIP ZIG



BERNHARD TAUCHNITZ



1858



S;

 This page in the original text is blank.


 












    CONTENTS

OF V OL U ME I.



CHAPTER I.
   -II.
   -     III.
   --  IV.


   -      V.
   -     VI.
   -    VII.
   -  VIII.
   _ _ ULX.
   -      X.
   -     XI.
   -    Xi[.


   -  XII.
   -  XIV.
   -    XV.
   -  XVI.


   - XVII.
   - XVIII.



In the midst of Life we are in Death
A Short Pedigree .   .   .
Down the Rhine and up the Thames
Leonora Nixon lands, - and forthwith finds a
  Guardian    .   .   .   .   .   .   .
The Willows    .
An Enemy procures Leonora an English Home
A City Uncle  .   .
How Leonora's Name came to be shortened
A Practical Lesson on the Force of Habit
Arrival of, an Addition or, an Acquisition
Battledore and Shuttlecock  .   .
To Marry, - or not to Marry, - that is the
  Question.   .   .       .   .   .   .
All Serene    .       .   .   .
Seven years later .   .   .   .
Return to Germany after Ten Years' Absence
First Mountain Excursion attempted by the Nixon
Family  .   .   .   .   .   .   .
Peasants Artists  .   .   .   .   (.
A Remnant of the Middle Ages  .   .



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 206
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VI              CONTENTS OF VOLUME I.

                                                      Page
CHAPTER XIX. Almenant.           .              .   .   276
    -    XX. St. Benedict's and its Inhabitants. .      287
    -    XXI. The Mountain Mill.     .   .  .   .      305
    -   XXII. The Crags  .   .   .   .19


 






                  Q U I T S!

                       VOL. I.


                    CHAPTER I.
              In the midst of Life we are in Death.
    THr bell of the steamer tolled. A hissing sound of
escaping vapour, and the gradual cessation of even the
slight motion of a Rhine boat, informed the passengers
that they had reached their destination for the night, and
induced those who had taken refuge in the cabins from
the heat of a July afternoon to commence a tumultuous
rush on deck. Stretched on one of the sofas in what is
called the pavilion, and perfectly unmoved by the bustle
around him, lay a young Englishman, apparently in
a precarious state of health, and in such very deep
mourning that some inquisitive tourists took the trouble
to make inquiries about him, and, without much difficulty,
discovered that he was a nobleman returning home to
take possession of his estates on the death of his father.
Yet great as had been the attention lavished on him
during the day by most of the English travellers who
had become acquainted with his name and rank, they
now all hurried past him without word or look, so wholly
intent were they on securing their luggage, and obtaining
apartments at the usually crowded hotels. Two persons
who had entered the steam-boat but a couple of hours



1



Quiets. L.

 
IN THE MIDST OF LIFE



previously, stopped, however, at the door, looked back
and spoke to each other, but in tones so low, that no
sound reached the invalid's ear, though, from the direction
of their eyes, he bad little doubt that he was himself the
subject of discussion Father and daughter they seemed
to be, and had attracted his attention directly on their
entrance, from the evident desire of both to remain
unobserved. The gentleman had the remains of con-
siderable beauty of face and person, disfigured by an
unusual degree of corpulence, which, however, he seemed
in no way disposed to lessen, for during his short sojourn
in the steam-boat he had left the pavilion no less than
three times to strengthen and refresh himself with soup,
beefsteak, and coffee, each time inviting his daughter to
join him, and receiving for answer a quick shake of the
head, followed, after he had left her, by a still closer
drawing into the corner of the sofa, from which she
never moved, and a pressing nearer to the adjacent
window, while she raised towards it, to catch the
waning light, a volume of Tauchnitz's edition of
"British Authors." Perhaps this last circumstance, as
much as the mysterious whispering of the travellers,
had excited his lordship's curiosity, for he concluded
that if she were not English, she at least understood
the language, and perfectly too, as her quick reading
and expressive changes of countenance proved beyond
a doubt.   Certain it is that his eyes had seldom
wandered from the face of the young girl from the
moment of her entrance; and a charming youthful face
it was, with its small undefined nose, lustrous black
eyes, well-formed mouth, and high intellectual forehead
partially covered by braids of raven hair. But it was
the smile that had most of all attracted, for it was the



2

 
WE SE IN DEATH.



a



brightest he had ever seen, and the more remarkable
as the general expression of the countenance was pensive.
She stood now leaning against the cabin door, while her
father satisfactorily proclaimed his country, by offering,
in very good English, to secure rooms for the invalid,
in case he should reach the hotel before him.
    " Thank you-you are very kind," he replied, slowly
rising, "but as I have discovered that this boat goes on
with us to-morrow, I have made arrangements for remain-
ing in it. Landing;, or rather getting myself under way
so early in the morning, fatigues me too much."
    He advanced towards them while speaking, and then
followed them up the stairs to the deck, where their
perfect composure during the scene of confusion that
ensued, proved them to be experienced travellers. They
exhibited none of the anxiety about their luggage, that
put the whole ship's company into commotion when the
tarpaulin was removed, which had during the day-time
covered the innumerable trunks, boxes, bags, and port-
manteaux that had lain heaped together, not a few, as
is usual on such occasions, without an address, or even
the name of the proprietor.  It seemed as if each
individual expected at once to have his property, and
the murmuring, growling voices of the men mixed.
strangely with the sharp, impatient tones of the women.
Many, though surrounded by packages of all kinds and
dimensions, neither trusting their eyes nor memories,
imagined that something must still be failing, and
eagerly watched each piece of luggage as it was drawn
forward, while the different emissaries from the hotels
thrust cards into their hands, and. vociferated recommen-
dations into their bewildered ears. Some oddly-shaped
cases, that seemed to have once belonged to a carriage,
                                        1

 
TX THE MEDST OP LIPE



were pointed out with a silent gesture by the English-
man, and then instantly seized by the nearest porters,
while he turned to the invalid, and, taking off his hat,
politely hoped to have the pleasure of seeing him the
next day. A few minutes afterwards, he and his
daughter disappeared in the long procession of travellers,
emissaries, porters, and truck-drivers, who hurried
towards the different hotels.
    An unusually brilliant sunset had left a bright orange-
coloured sky that served to render the chief buildings of
the town still conspicuous, and which, reflected in the
broad tranquil river, gave the warmth of colouring and
distinctness of outline to the numerous boats and their
picturesque rigging that is supposed to be peculiar to
warmer climes.   That recollections of similar places
crowded on the memory of the traveller, as he stood
alone near the rudder of the steam-boat, is possible,
but not very probable, for Englishmen are not prone
to meditations on past scenes or scenery; it is more
likely that he was thinking of home, and what awaited
him there, while his eyes followed slowly the golden
ripple on the water, or rested in reverie on the lounging
figures of the surrounding boatmen. The colours of
evening changed imperceptibly from violet to blue, from
blue to grey; but it was not until the landscape had
faded in the twilight, and lights from the suburbs
of the town began to glimmer redly through the inter-
vening mist, that he turned away and descended to the
pavilion.
   It is unnecessary to follow him. We have but to
record that he was reminded of his dark-eyed country-
woman by finding the book she had been reading where
,she had probably placed it when putting on her bonnet.

 
WE ARE IN DEATH.



The name written on the yellow cover was "Nixon,"
and, though neither euphonious nor remarkable, it
seemed to attract his attention in no common degree,
for he repeated it several times, and then murmured,
"Surely a relation of ours married a man of the name of
Nixon - yes - certainly, that was the name - and
it was Harry Darwin's mother - the man a merchant,
or something of that sort, who became a bankrupt, or -
no - squandered his fortune and was obliged to live
abroad - that was it. Harry never liked speaking of
his mother's second marriage or his stepfather; however,
I am rather surprised he did not mention this half-sister
of his, whom he must have seen repeatedly, for before
he began to live in his yacht, he was continually
making excursions abroad, and especially to Germany.
I wonder is this the man I mean My mother said lie
was a vulgar parvenu - parvenu he may be - vulgar
he is not -  and as to his daughter -  one of whose
grandmothers I strongly suspect to have been the black-
eyed Susan of nautical celebrity - she is the nicest
creature I have seen for an age, and may turn out to
be a relation of ours. . Let me see; her maternal
and my paternal grandfather having been brothers, we
should be second cousins - or first cousins once
removed -  or third cousins -  or - At all events
the name is a sufficient pretext for commencing an
acquaintance with both of them to-morrow, and that
I shall certainly do."
   At a very early hour the next morning most of the
passengers of the preceding day, reinforced by many
others, began to crowd noisily into the steam-boat; not
one, however, descended to the cabin until long after
the boat had left her moorings, and our traveller



5

 

IN Tfla MIOST OF LIFE



was given more than time to finish his breakfast in
undisturbed solitude. Tapping rather impatiently on
Mr. or Miss Nixon's book, which he had placed beside
him on the table, he awaited the entrance of a group
of English who seemed to have chosen the stairs as the
place for discussing the events of the previous night;
and the words that he overheard proved them to have
been of no common-place description: - "Dreadful -
awfully sudden - enormously stout man - looked
apoplectic - must have taken place just after he wvent
to bed - the body was quite cold when they broke
open the door this morning - the poor girl fainted
I saw her being carried across the passage to her room."
With a degree of anxiety and interest that surprised
himself, he approached the speakers, and learned from
them that Mr. Nixon, their fellow passenger of the
previous day, had been found dead in his bed about half
an hour before they had left the hotel.
   "And is his poor daughter quite alone" he asked
compassionately.
   "It seems so, but really I had no time to make
inquiries," answered a gentleman, endeavouring to pass
into the cabin.
   " Oh I dare say the people at the hotel will do every-
thing that is necessary," observed a lady, apparently of
a more inquisitive and communicative disposition; "and,
at all events, the young lady seemed to me extremely
well able to take care of herself under all circumstances.
We joined the table d'hote yesterday, when we found
that we could not procure a sitting-room, for you know
it is only Germans or French who can drink tea in
a bed-room! She and her father were not far distant
from us, and my attention was attracted towards them by



6

 
WE ARE I DEATH.



the variety and quantity of meat and sauces devoured
by him in the course of half an hour. Poor man!
I did not know it would be his last dinner or supper,
whichever he called it - nor he either, of course.
But I must say, at a public table I should be sorry to
see my daughters so perfectly at their ease as she
seemed to be. The manner in which her father made
acquaintance with all the people about him was quite
extraordinary, and the young lady joined in the conver-
sation with a fluency scarcely becoming her years, and
not at all English!"
    "I wish," said the invalid traveller, languidly, "I
wish I had gone on shore yesterday evening. I might,
perhaps, have been of use. Going back to the aw -
aw - town, what's its name is aw - out of the ques-
tion now, as my return home has already been pro-
vokingly protracted one way or another."
   "Very kind of your lordship to feel so much interest
about a stranger," rejoined the lady, "but you may be
assured the people at the hotel will pay the greatest
attention to this Miss Nixon: my daughters were actually
refuised a room they particularly wished to have, in order
to let her be near her papa, and the whole household
was so occupied with her this morning that we came
away without breakfast."
   This seemed to have been the case with many other
passengers also, and a clattering of cups and saucers,
and a hurrying to and fro of waiters ensued, which
apparently disturbed his lordship's meditations, for he
went on deck and watched the swift motion of the
steamer, as, aided alike by art and nature, it hurried
forward with the stream: the water widening, the banks



7


 

A SHORT PEDIGREE.



sinking, and windmills serving as landmarks from the
time they entered the territories of Holland.
    Flow on, river, as you have done for ages! press for-
ward, steam-boat, to complete your daily task - forward
as quickly as your impatient passengers can desire
there is but one among them who in the course of the
day bestows a passing thought on the orphan girl whose
sudden bereavement had that morning so unpleasantly
reminded them that "In the midst of life we are in
death."

                    CHAPTER II.
                    A Short Pedigree.
    THOUGH few people could be induced by the sudden
death of a stranger at an hotel to protract their journey
in order to be of service to the survivor - even sup-
posing that person a young and helpless girl - a return
to the town on the Rhine, and a short delay there with
the daughter of Mr. Nixon, will scarcely be objected to
by any humane novel reader. After the body of the
deceased had been examined, and the cause of death
ascertained, the civil authorities requested an interview
with Miss Nixon, and questioned her respecting her
parents, her age, her past life, and future prospects, ex-
hibiting very evident satisfaction on learning that she
had two uncles in London, was related to the Earl of
-Medway, and had a step-brother who she described as
being of no profession but a gentleman and a baronet.
On being advised to write to this brother without delay
she was obliged to confess that she did not know his
address - her mother had always sent her letters to
him under cover to Lord Medway, who had been his



8

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



guardian, and who had also managed all their English
affairs for them. She had never corresponded with her
uncles, but had written to inform Lord Medway of her
mother's death, which had taken place some months
previously, and she had received a very, kind answer;
her brother also had written, but had not come to see
them - he and her father had never been on good
terms.
    These few particulars had been in a manner extorted
from the poor girl, as, scarcely recovered from the shock
she had so recently received, she leaned her bead
weeping on the table beside her; but when, on being
asked if she had money to defray her expenses to Lon-
don, she silently produced a purse full of English
sovereigns, they recommended her, without further hesi-
tation, to the care of the landlady of the hotel, who was
present; and after a whispered proposal to the latter to
give her, in some more convenient place, the necessary
directions about the interment of the Englishman, they
all withdrew, and Leonora Nixon found herself, for the
first time since she had known her bereavement, alone.
   She instantly sat upright, pushed her dark hair from
her pale face, seemed to listen intently to the sound of
the retreating footsteps; and, when silence was restored
to the corridor, she rose, and murmuring the words,
" Once more - I must see him once more," left the
room, and ran quickly towards a door at the opposite side
of the passage, which she opened with a precipitancy
that proved the violence of feelings she had thought it
necessary to control in the presence of strangers during
the preceding hour. In the doorway, however, she stood
amazed, at first incapable of uttering an articulate sound.
No trace of her father was there; the bed in which he



9

 

A SHORT PEDIGREE.



had died was deprived of all its furniture, and a woman
with water and a brush stood scouring the interior, as
if death had infected the very boards. Strips of carpet
hung pendant at the wide-open windows, from which
the curtains had been removed, and a housemaid was
deluging the painted floor with fresh water, after having
placed the chairs and tables in an adjoining room.
Somewhat startled by Leonora's sudden appearance, the
girl stopped her work, and leaned on her long-handled
brush, while Leonora advanced, stammering, "Where
is - is - my - father"
    "The room must be got ready for the steam-boat pas-
sengers this evening, miss," answered the girl evasively.
    "Where have they laid him" she asked, with
assumed calmness.
    "Surely, miss, you don't want to see the corpse
again after being so frightened this morning"
    "I do wish to see it," said Leonora, "and you must
take me to the room directly."
    "But I have got orders not to let any one into it
until the coffin comes."
    "Such orders cannot concern me. Give me the key,
and I promise to bring it back to you in half an hour."
    "I must first ask the landlady," said the girl,
evidently impressed with involuntary resp ect byLeonora's
decided manner; and passing her quickly, she was soon
after heard speaking to her mistress at the other end of
the passage. They then both advanced towards Leonora;
and after a few words of remonstrance on the part of
the landlady, which of course made no sort of impression,
the latter proposed herself accompanying the orphan to
take leave of the remains of her parent.
   They descended the stairs, traversed a broad cor-



..10

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



ridor, and, to Leonora's infinite surprise, entered the
ball-room. She looked round her with a bewildered air,
while her companion slowly and reluctantly unlocked
the door of an adjoining refreshment-room, and then
silently pointed to a long table, where, stretched on a
mattress, and covered with a linen cloth, the outline of
a human figure could be distinguished.
    The windows were open, but the green jalousies so
arranged that little light fell on the features, uncovered
with eager haste by Leonora's trembling hand. If the
landlady had dreaded being witness to a violent ebulli-
tion of grief, she was soon convinced that her apprehen-
sions had been unnecessary. Large tears gathered slowly
in the eyes of the youthful mourner, and fell heavily on
the face of the dead: - alas! that we should have to
record they were the only tears likely to be shed for
Frederick Nixon! No bad criterion of our worth and
usefulness in this world would be these tears, could
they but be collected; and not without deep meaning
was the Roman lachrimatory and many funeral customs
of other nations of antiquity. In the present civilised
states of the world it has become a sort of maxim that
of the dead we should only speak advantageously. The
Egyptians thought otherwise; and their post mortem trials,
where every one was at liberty to accuse the deceased,
and the defence alone depended on the good will and
affection of surviving friends and relations, may often
have found a place in the thoughts of the living, and
prevented many a sin of omission as well as commission.
   Not few would, in such a case, have been Frederick
Nixon's accusers, his sole defender the orphan girl, who,
with the prospect of dependence on unknown relations
before her, and uncertainty as to her reception among



11

 

A SHORT PEDIGREE.



them, nevertheless sincerely mourned the parent who
had squandered her inheritance and left her homeless.
We regret the necessity of recording the story of his
life, which, in its dismal details, is too common either
to create interest or serve as warning.
    His paternal pedigree had been of a more respectable
than brilliant description, until his father became a man
of importance in the commercial world. This father had
commenced his career in the manner hereditary in the
family, that is, as shop-boy in his father's old established
house in the city, and had wisely preserved through life
a vivid recollection of having carried parcels to their
destination, and considered it an honour when permitted,
in his turn, to stand behind the counter and weigh sugar
and spice for the numerous customers; or, on receiving
an "order," to make up with dexterous hand the various
packages and consign them to the care of his successor
in office, the attendant boy, who had been especially
commanded to say "Sir" to him. Being without brothers
or sisters, he found himself, on the death of his parents,
in possession, not only of an extensive business, but also
a considerable sum of money: the latter he increased
by a judicious marriage, and, being of an enterprising
disposition, engaged in successful speculations during the
war, which raised him to a state of opulence quite
beyond his powers of enjoyment; so that the accumulated
money amounted, by means of interest and compound
interest, to sums of such magnitude that the shop was
at length closed, and an emigration commenced beyond
the precincts of the city. He had now an office and
warehouses, and when death deprived him of his wife,
he found no difficulty in obtaining the hand of one of
the very handsome daughters of an Irish gentleman of



12

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



wonderfully ancient family and distinguished poverty,
whose name, preceded by the euphonious particle 0, satis-
factorily proved that he belonged to one of the illustrious
races said to be of royal lineage.
    In the course of time, Mr. Nixon was made fully to
comprehend that a name is by no means so insignificant
a thing as Juliet Capulet supposed it to be; for his wife,
ardently desiring to regain what she considered her
proper position in the world, made many and desperate
efforts to rise in the social scale, and, as a first step
thereto, unceasingly endeavoured to induce her husband
to remove to the " West End." From the house in
Russell-square, purchased and furnished at the time of
their marriage, he could never be induced to move;
neither would he give up old friends or habits, and
to the last day of his life continued proud of having
been Lord Mayor, and gloried bona fide in the title of
alderman.
    The two sons of his first wife, born and educated
while he was still a hard-working man, acquired his
tastes and habits, and in process of time became his
partners; but the only son of his second wife, when
rendered unmanageable at home by indulgence, had been
consigned to the care of,
   "A clergyman, married, of much experience, with
extensive premises at the WEST END ," who would
" receive into his family EIGHT YOUNG GENTLEMEN. The
course of Instruction securing a solid preparation for the
universities, c. c. c. The treatment of the pupils
truly parental."
   Parental it was in one sense certainly, for parents
are almost always careless instructors; but while lazily
construing Virgil and Homer, Master Frederick grew



13

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



healthy and handsame, and acquired tastes, habits, anl
manners that his mother pronounced exquisite, and
which raised expectations of future triumphs in life,
the disappointment of which was spared her by an
early death.
    With half a dozen of the "eight young gentlemen"
Frederick Nixon afterwards went to Oxford, where he
proved notoriously idle and indolent. Good-humoured
and lavishly profuse in his expenditure, he was, how-
ever, universally called and considered a " capital fellow,"
and in this opinion his father probably concurred, for he
paid his debts without expressing much astonishment at
their amount, was easily convinced that his son's talents
were more of a military than civil description, got a com-
mission for him in the Guards, and dying soon after-
wards used his plebeian privilege of dividing his fortune
with perfect equality among his sons, thereby leaving
them all well provided with what is but too generally
considered the greatest blessing in life.
    The step-brothers, unlike in disposition, temper,
education, and habits, dissolved partnership, and in the
world of London seldom met again. Frederick, freed
from all restraint, possessed of a large fortune and hand-
some person, fell at once into the disorderly, if not
actually profligate, mode of life of his companions and
nominal friends, and, without being worse than others,
contrived to give himself an unpleasant kind of notoriety
by the numerous foolish things he said, and did, to
obtain tolerance, if not a position in society where a
total want of connexion nevertheless ever caused him to
feel himself isolated. His efforts to remedy this latter
evil were unremitting, and at length partially successful,
when he persuaded Lady Darwin, the widow of a baronet



14

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



of good family and daughter of an Honourable Augustus
Thorpe, to become his wife. It is true, her cousin, the
Earl of Medway, did not receive his new relative with
any demonstration of satisfaction; it was even said that
he had openly pronounced him to be a weak-headed
spendthrift, and given Lady Darwin to understand that,
in consequence of her marriage, he should consider it
necessary to send her only son (his ward) to school with-
out further delay. She resigned the youthful Harry to
the care of his guardian, and perceived not at all the
boy's gradual but total estrangement, as year after year
he spent less of his holidays with her, and began com-
pletely to identify himself with the Medway family.
    Lady Darwin was still young and handsome, and for
some years her career was as brilliant as apparently in-
exhaustible wealth could make it; but Frederick Nixon
had, even before his marriage, considerably encroached
upon his capital, which, placed in theFunds, was com-
pletely at his disposal; and, totally averse to business of
any kind, he continued to supply all deficiencies of in-
come in the same manner. His wife, purposely kept in
ignorance of the state of his affairs, thought not of
making retrenchments; and, in the course of time, was
eager to plunge deeper into the dissipations of the world
to escape from the society of her husband, who, after
having frittered away a noble fortune in the vain pursuit
of selfish pleasure and ostentation, began altogether to
lose the good temper for which he had once been so re-
markable. He became irritable and restless, continually
changing his place of residence, and relieving immediate
want of money by the sale of one house, while incurring
debt, at the same time, by the purchase of another; and
thus he struggled on until the crash, long foreseen by



15

 

A SHORT PEDIGREE.



every one, took place; when the sale of his effects, and
his wife's resignation of thirty thousand pounds, his
wedding gift to her, having satisfied his creditors, he
was at liberty to retire to the continent, there to live on
her jointure from her first marriage.
    They had lost many children while in England, but
Leonora, born at a quiet town in Germany, during the
time of their first fresh grief, lived; and the change pro-
duced in their small household, and cares imposed on
them by her birth, turned their thoughts into a new
channel, and greatly alleviated their useless regrets.
While, however, Lady Darwin quickly resigned herself
to her loss of fortune, and continued to devote herself
exclusively to her child, her husband, suffering in-
tolerably from ennui, began, by degrees, to indulge in
the roving propensities common to his countrymen when
they have left England in search of a foreign home.
As far as was possible, too, he fell into his former habits,
and squandered, and wandered when and where he could
during his wife's life-time. Her death, just as his daugh-
ter had attained her fifteenth year, left him and his
child in a state of painful destitution, and to the two
brothers he had so openly despised in the days of his
prosperity, Frederick Nixon was at length obliged to
apply for assistance. It was not refused; each brother
consented to give an annual sum of money for his sup-
port; and in order to be near England in case of pe-
cuniary difficulties, he had commenced a Rhine pilgrimage,
uncertain where he should finally establish himself with
his daughter, and contrive to live on an income, of the
smallness of which he complained as only those do who
have spent but never earned.
   His faults and follies were alike forgotten by his



16

 
A SHORT PEDIGREt.



mourning daughter, as she bent over the well-known
face, and drew towards her the cold stiff hand, that, but
a few hours before, had, warm with life, pressed hers.
The landlady's various movements of impatience-
jingling of keys, opening of windows, and displacing of
furniture in the adjacent room - were unheeded by
Leonora until she became conscious of the approach of
two men, who, talking loudly, and walking heavily,
carried between them a coffin of large dimensions. As
they deposited it on the end of the table, they took off
their caps and looked towards the landlady for orders.
Leonora shuddered, and allowed herself to be led from
the room without remonstrance, receiving a chilling sort
of consolation from the assurance given her that her
father should be interred with all the consideration due
to his rank.
    That this promise had been fulfilled she had no
doubt, when, a few days afterwards, the bills were laid
before her by the hostess. In fact, the purse of sovereigns
which had afforded such general satisfaction a few days
previously, became so greatly reduced in its contents,
that she felt it was time to decide on her future plans,
and, having bolted her door, she drew towards her, and
unlocked, her father's writing-desk. It contained even
less money than she expected, and some letters which
shocked and grieved her beyond measure, for, from their
perusal, she ascertained that her father had already
considerably overdrawn the allowance made him by his
brothers. His bills had been honoured, but the letter in-
forming him of the fact contained, from his eldest bro-
ther, not only a reprimand of extreme severity but a
threat of retaining payment by instalments on any future
similar occasion. An angry correspondence had ensued,



17



2



Quits. 1.

 
A SHORT PEDIGREE.



followed by a quarrel, and Leonora at length discovered
that she had been during the last two days unconsciously
on her way to England, where her father had hoped,
by his presence, to appease the ire of his justly-incensed
step-brothers.
    Leonora perceived clearly, and at once, that her
father had been in the wrong, nevertheless, her dislike
to her City uncles (for so her mother had invariably
denominated them) increased tenfold. She remembered
all she had ever heard of their purse-proud vulgarity;
called to mind the various anecdotes of ludicrous
economy and ignorance of fashionable life on their parts,
so often related, most probably with exaggeration, by her
father; saw all, and more than all, she had ever heard,
confirmed by the packet of well-written, business-like
letters before her, and resolved never to apply to such
men for assistance. Her thoughts naturally turned next
to her step-brother, Sir Harry Darwin, although her ac-
quaintance with him was but slight, and her father had
done everything in his power to prejudice h