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MILES LAMBERT'S THREE CHANCES.
Miles Lambert's Uhree Chances.
BY MARY E. PALGRAVE.
THE FIRST CHANCE COMES.
DAY'S work in the
Purbeck quarries generally divides itself into two very distinct portionsthat done underground and
that done above. The morning is passed by the men down in the dismal caves and galleries of the quarries, where they hew and blast the blocks of stone out of the solid rock. These blocks are pushed and rolled, or, where the ground is even enough,
wheeled on little trucks, to the mouth of the quarry, and then hauled up the slippery, paved incline into the daylight by means of a chain and windlass, turned by a patient donkey. The afternoons are spent in one of the group of sheds gathered round the mouth of the quarry, in chiselling into some sort of shape the blocks of stone which it had been the morning's work to hew out from the rock below.
Miles Lambert had reached this pleasanter stage of his day's work one afternoon, about a fortnight after the storm I told you about in the last chapter. He was chipping away at a large oblong block of the Langton freestone in one of the sheds of Collins's quarry, where he worked, when a shadow fell across the sunny ground outside, and Raymond Layne made his
appearance. “I wanted to see you, Lambert,” he said, “and I thought I might walk down to the farm with you. Isn't it almost your time for leaving off work ?"
“Nigh upon it, sir. When the shadow of the windlass touches the wall of the shed yonder it'll be five o'clock, and I can go.”
Raymond leant against the wall and eyed the shadow of the windlass impatiently. At last it had crept across the space, and began to lay a black finger on the wall opposite. “Now, Lambert,” he cried, “your time is
at last! Put away your tools, and let us be off.”
Miles put his chisel and mallet into his basket, slung it over his shoulder, and followed Raymond from the quarry.
“I got a letter from my father yesterday,” said young Layne, “and do you know, Lambert, I am to start for London to-morrow.”
“ To-morrow? Oh, Master Raymond, I thought you were going to be here weeks and weeks longer!"
Miles had been looking sad before, but his face fell now more than ever. “So did I, but I suppose my father finds he can't
I get on without me. When I first came I did not think I could stay a week in this outlandish place, and now I wish I were going to be here ever so much longer.”
“ You have only been here just over a month," said Miles, dolefully; "and I am sure you are not anything like strong yet, sir—just think how tired you were after our climb up the Head.”
“Oh, I am as strong as I am likely to be, I believe," answered Raymond, gravely; for, though bright and vigorous now compared to what he was when he first came, his looks were still a great contrast to his sunburnt and sturdy companion's.
“ Will Stevens, who has been to London, says the sun never shines there, and it passes him how anybody can live in such a smoky place. You'd best stay with us, sir!”
“Oh, it isn't so bad as all that in London. Of course it's dark and foggy sometimes, but then there's so much going on! I can tell you, Miles, it's a grand thing only to stand in the streets and watch the stream of life going by. You see more people there in five minutes than you ever saw in your whole life, I'll be bound. Should not you like to see it all ?”
“Oh, shouldn't I !” cried Miles, whose eyes had kindled, as they always did, when Raymond spoke to him of the wonders of the great city. where's the good of talking about it? I shall never see London !”
“Oh, I don't know -" began his friend, eagerly; then broke off as if afraid of saying too much. “ London's the only place where you can really learn to be an artist, you know, Lambert.” (There were no Schools of Design then in the large towns as there are now.)
“ Yes—I know,” said the other, with a sigh.
“ Well,” went on Raymond, “I am more sorry to leave you than anybody or anything else in these parts.
You have shown me all sorts of things which I never knew before, and I should have found this place uncommonly dull but for
MILES LAMBERT'S THREE CHANCES.
"I am sure you have helped me ever so much more with my drawing, Master Raymond, and there's all the pencils and paper you've given me too. No one has ever helped me before, and I don't know how to thank you enough."
“Oh, nonsense!” said young Layne, gruffly. He found thanking easier work than being thanked.
“ It will be so dull when you are gone,” remarked Miles, mournfully.
"Oh, never mind, perhaps you will be comingat least, I mean I'm not worth missing, Lambert. You'll soon forget all about me."
“ I shall never forget you, sir,” he said huskily.
“I'll tell you what I want you to do, Lambert," said the other, rousing himself with a shake. “I want you to lend me some of your drawings to show my father. He would be interested in them, I know, and I've a particular reason for wishing him to see them. I can't tell you what it is now, but I assure you it's a very good reason indeed.”
Oh, but my drawings are not worth showing to anybody. Your father would laugh at them, sir; you did yourself at first, you know."
Only because I hadn't seen them ! Come, Lambert, which do you reckon the best judge of art—you or I? Won't you trust me with your drawings?” “ Trust
? Yes, indeed!” cried Miles, "take them and welcome, sir."
“I will come home with you now, and look them over, for they must be packed up to-night, as we are to start at six o'clock to-morrow morning."
They went down to the cottage, and Raymond looked over all Miles's drawings, and chose out a dozen of those which he thought would best serve to show off his young artist's talent.
“Mr. Turner shall see these, and Mr. Flaxman, and my father; and then, Lambert-well, then we shall see ! ” were his last mysterious words, when late in the evening the two parted.
Miles and his brothers and sisters were all waiting in the barton long before six o'clock next morning to see the travellers off. Mrs. Selby and Sally bustled in and out, busy with their preparations for the final breakfast. Raymond's travelling carriage had been brought out from its resting-place in the barn, and was undergoing a thorough cleaning at the hands of the farmer and two of his men. Presently the post-boy appeared with the horses which had come over the day before from the “Red Lion” at Welshcombe, and proceeded to harness them to the carriage.
It was time to start. Raymond Layne, attired once more in the mulberry-coloured travelling-coat
with its many capes, which had so excited the children's wonder and admiration at his first appearance at Rainscombe, ran out of the house to bid his friends good-bye. He was more sorry to part with them than he would have believed possible, and when the good-byes had all been said, the postilion had cracked his whip, and the carriage was lumbering slowly off along the rough road, he hung out of the window waving his hand to the five figures standing at the gate, and when they were out of sight dropped back into his seat with quite a heavy heart.
“ What did Master Layne mean, Miles, by saying he should soon see you again?” demanded Margery, when the carriage had quite disappeared from view. “ Did he
your head. What did he mean? Is he coming here again ? " “ Not that I know of,” said Miles, shortly.
I wish he would ! I wish he would come every single day!” cried Dick, looking down with awestruck eyes at the five-shilling piece which he had discovered in his astonished hand after Raymond had bidden him good-bye.
As for Robin, such marvellous things as silver coins had so seldom come in his small way that he did not at all know what to make of his crownpiece. He was presently discovered by Phyllis sucking it, and very much inclined to cry because it did not taste sweet.
“Come, children," said Margery, who had the wit to see that Miles was not in a mood to be teased with questions, “ mother will be wanting her cup of tea, and we mustn't keep Mrs. Tims from her work any longer to mind her. Come, Robin, let sister take care of your money for you, and when Miles goes over to Welshcombe he shall buy you something fine with it.”
She took the child's hand in hers, and they trooped down the hill.
Miles only went into the house to take up his knapsack, and trudged off with a brief “No” to Margery, when she called after him, “ Why, Miles, don't you want any breakfast?"
Poor fellow! it was with a sad and anxious heart that he went to his work that morning. The shock of finding his father's dead body among those who had perished in the wreck had been very terrible, and he was grieving bitterly for his loss. His mother, too, he felt sure was dying. Her strength had failed more every hour since the certainty of her husband's death had come home
MILES LAMBERT'S THREE CHANCES.
to her. Very soon he and his
brothers and sisters would be motherless and fatherless both. And this morning, besides these great griefs and some pressing anxiety besides—for was not he now sole bread-winner for the family? whom had they to look to but him ?-there was the additional trouble of losing his new friend, who had been so kind to him, and who had won for himself a bigger place in Miles's heart than he had known till he was gone.
Miles hammered a great many sad and rebellious thoughts into his block of stone that day, and came home at night looking miserably tired and unhappy.
There could be no going up on the down to see the sunset that evening-even if Miles and Margery had had the heart to do it-or for many evenings after. Margaret Lambert grew suddenly much worse, and though after several days of anxiety she rallied a little, it was plain that the end was very near.
“Here, Phyllis, child,” cried Farmer Selby's voice one morning about three weeks after Raymond Layne's departure, as the little girl was crossing the farmyard with her can of milk,
here's a letter for Miles. Give it him safe, and tell him I found it waiting for him at the inn at Swanford last evening, and brought it along with me.”
Phyllis wrapped the letter carefully in a corner of her pinafore, and ran home as fast as the milk would allow her.
The arrival of a letter was not the common event eighty years ago that it is nowadays, when even children think but little of the postman's knock. It then cost a shilling or more, according to the distance, to send a letter, so most people had to think a good deal about it before they wrote to their friends, and those who received the letters prized them a great deal more than they generally do now.
Except the two or three letters which at different times Margaret Lambert had received from her husband from sea, I don't think such a thing had ever yet come to the Lamberts' cottage, so you can fancy how eagerly the children crowded round Miles when he came in from work and Phyllis gave him his letter.
“ It is from Master Layne,” he announced, when in thrilling silence the large red seal had been broken and the letter unfolded.
“Dear Lambert,” read Miles, aloud, “I got home quite safely, after a very long and wearisome journey. The roads were so heavy about Winchester, owing to the storm, I suppose, that
we could only proceed very slowly, and once we actually stuck fast, and had to get another pair of horses from a farm which happily was near at hand, to drag us out of the slough. I began to think we should never get on at all. My father was from home when I got there, but as soon as he returned I showed him your drawings, and I can assure you that I never saw him better pleased in his life. When I told him that you had never had a single drawing lesson, he would scarce believe
Mr. Turner and several other excellent judges have also seen them, and they all say there is the making of a great artist in you, and are eager to see you. Now, my dear Lambert, I have a proposal Here Miles suddenly broke off, and sent the younger ones out of doors before he finished reading his letter aloud, with a flush on his cheeks and a curious, eager light in his eyes. Margery came and looked over his shoulder“a proposal to make to you on the part of my father. I have told you how he delights in helping artists and encouraging men of talent. Well, he desires me to tell you that if you are willing (and I know you are) to devote yourself to art, he will pay for your education as an artist and provide for your maintenance till you are in a position to be independent of help—which I prophesy will be in a very few years. Now I entreat you not to let any foolish pride or notions of independence prevent you from accepting this offer. I assure you there is nothing in it that would degrade the proudest man; my father looks on it as an honour to help men of talent, and he will be deeply hurt— I will not say offended—if you are too proud to accept the help he is proud to offer. I am sure I could not put the case more strongly than this, and you must not grieve me by a refusal. I cannot say how I am looking forward to having you near. I long to show you all Mr. Turner's pictures. Write, my dear Lambert, at once, and say when you will be prepared to start, and I will send you everything needful for your journey. In great anxiety for your answer, I am your sincere friend,
“ RAYMOND REYNOLDS LAYNE. “ P.S.—You know, when your fortune is made, as I can safely say it soon will be, and everybody is pressing to buy your pictures, you can pay back to my father anything your training may have cost him, if you are too proud to receive it as a gift.”
“Oh, Miles. Miles !” cried Margery, clapping her hands and dancing about with glee, “here's your
chance come at last. I knew it would !" But Miles thought of the children and sighed.
PEEPS INTO WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
Reeps into Westminster Abbey. .
was made standard-bearer to Henry V. on account
of his courage at the Battle of Agincourt. His By EVELYN L. FARRAR.
tomb forms part of the screen of the chapel, and is
ornamented with many devices, among others, PEEP VI.
water-skins (bougets), from his name Bourchier, E are standing now in the upper part buckles (Fr., boucliers), from the same derivation, of the north aisle, which extends the and catherine-wheels (Fr., rouet), from Roet, one whole length of the Abbey, broken of the family names. Next to him is the colossal only by the transepts, for, as we statue of James Watt (1819), the improver of the see, the Abbey is built in the shape steam-engine. His unwieldy figure, which sits in
of a cross.
To our left rises the an arm-chair, turning his back on the rest of the stately flight of steps and the brass Abbey, is quite out of place in this little chapel, gates leading to Henry VII.'s being out of all proportion to the other monuments. Chapel. In the centre is the Con- So large is it, that it was with difficulty brought into fessor's shrine, which is also raised the chapel at all, and as it crossed the threshold the
several steps above the ground. pavement gave way and "disclosed to the eyes of Far overhead, the glorious
the astonished workmen arches of the roof meet and
rows upon rows of gilded interlace like the waving
coffins in the vaults beneath; branches of forest trees, and
into which, but for the preso perfect is the architecture
caution of planking the area, that our gaze is lost among
workmen and work must them, and seems to wander
have descended, joining the on, as in forest glades and
dead in the chamber of avenues, to vistas of beauty
In the centre of the chapel Notice the richly-carved
is the monument to Sir Giles arch of Henry V.'s chantry
Daubeny, and on it is his on this north side. The car.
effigy in plate armour. On vings represent the figures
the soles of his shoes are of many saints, the coro
carved two monks, who have nation of the king, and his
apparently fallen asleep over devices, namely, the swans
their beads, and some supand antelopes of the De
pose them to allude to the Bohuns, from whom he was Ri
laziness of the monks genedescended, and the beacon
rally, who slept instead of or cresset-light which he
saying masses for the souls took for his badge after his
of the dead. accession.
Against the wall is the At the foot of the steps of
bust of Sir Rowland Hill, Henry VII.'s chapel is the
the "penny stamp,” as it grave of Edward Hyde,
has been called, he being Earl of Clarendon (1674),
the inventor, in 1840, of the author of the " History of ??
present rate of postage. Bethe Rebellion,” whose body
fore his time the postage of was brought from
a letter from one part of Rouen, where he had been
England to another was a exiled on a charge of high
shilling or more, so that the treason.
sending of a letter was a The first of the four chap
not the els on this side is that of
every-day event which we St. Paul's. At the entrance
now consider it. Poor peois buried Ludowick Robsart,
ple could seldom afford to Lord Bourchier (1431), who
Shrine of St. Erasmus.
send letters at all, and thus
PEEPS INTO WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
families once separated could have scarcely any intercourse with each other, and months might pass before any news could be received of absent relatives. A curious incident first called Sir Rowland Hill's attention to this state of things. While still a young man, he was walking through the Lake District, “when he one day saw the postman deliver a letter to a woman at a cottagedoor. The woman turned it over and examined it, and then returned it, saying she would not pay the postage, which was a shilling. Hearing that the letter was from her brother, Mr. Hill paid the postage, in spite of the manifest unwillingness of the woman.
As soon as the postman was out of sight, she showed Mr. Hill how his money had been wasted, as far as she was concerned. The sheet was blank. There was an agreement between her brother and herself that as long as all went well with him, he would send a blank sheet in this way once a quarter, and she had thus tidings of him without expense of postage.”
Mr. Hill rightly thought that there must be something wrong in a system that led people to cheat the Government in order to hear of each other's welfare, so he set to work to get this reformed, and succeeded in bringing in the penny stamp.
There are several other monuments in this chapel, but none of any great interest. We enter the next chapel, that of St. John the Baptist, through the shrine of St. Erasmus, which was built in the reign of Richard II. with the fine paid by John of Gaunt for the murder of a knight in the Abbey by two of his followers. The knight's name was Hawle, and the cause of dispute was a young Spanish count whom Hawle and Shackle, another knight, had taken prisoner during the campaign of the Black Prince in the North of Spain. The Spanish count appealed for protection to John of Gaunt, who was his friend, and the latter ordered them to release their prisoner. On their refusal, he shut them up in the Tower, whence they escaped and took refuge in Westminster Abbey. In violation of the rights of sanctuary, the followers of John of Gaunt pursued them into the sacred building, and burst in upon them just as High Mass was being celebrated. Shackle managed to escape, but Hawle was not so fortunate. Twice he was chased round the choir, his pursuers striking at him as he ran, and at last he sank, covered with wounds, at the north entrance of the choir, and was there despatched. So great was the horror inspired by this crime, that the desecrated Abbey was shut up for four months, and a fine of £2,000 was exacted by way of penance. With this money the
shrine of St. Erasmus was built-one of the most picturesque and beautiful bits in the Abbey. The entrance is a graceful arch supported by light clustered pillars, and there are marks of an iron gate, which has since disappeared. Within is a bracket, on which once stood the statue of St. Erasmus, the rays which surrounded his head still remaining on the wall. A lamp formerly hung in the centre, its smoke escaping through a hole which we see in the roof.
Passing through the shrine of St. Erasmus into the Chapel of John the Baptist we come upon the stone tomb of Sir Thomas Vaughan, treasurer to Edward IV. and chamberlain to Edward V. Next comes a tomb without any inscription at all, only a bare slab with a kneeling figure on each side. This is the monument of Colonel Edward Popham (1651) and Anne, his wife. He was one of the leaders of the Parliamentary army, and at the Restoration, when Charles II. ordered the removal of all the regicides from the Abbey, his body was taken away, but the monument was allowed to stay, at the intercession of his friends, on condition of the inscription being either erased or turned to the wall. From the condition of the slab, it is supposed that the inscription was erased. He is represented in plate armour, with a sash and sword, and his lady is in the dress of the period. In contrast to him is the Royalist, Thomas Carey (1649), a Gentleman of the Bedchamber to Charles I., whose monument is next to that of Popham, and who died of a broken heart at the execution of his master. Close by are remains of ancient cupboards, in which, probably, vestments and plate were kept. Two grand-children of Edward I., by his daughter Elizabeth and Humphry de Bohun, are buried here. Their names were Hugh and Mary, and both died quite young.
At the end of the chapel is the imposing tomb of Henry Carey, Lord Hunsdon (1596), chamberlain to Queen Elizabeth. His royal mistress had often promised to make him an earl, but as often put off the fulfilment of her promise, so that at last, worn out with disappointment and mortification at the long delay, he fell ill and died. As he lay dying, the queen came to see him, and laid the patent and robes on his bed. “ Madam,” he answered, "seeing you counted me not worthy of this honour while I was living, I count myself unworthy of it now I am dying."
Next to him lies the “grand conspirator," William of Colchester, Abbot of Westminster (1420), who, with six others, conspired against Henry IV., and swore to remain faithful till death