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Owing to a mistake as to the time when Victor Hugo's novel would be published, together with the desire of the Publishers to
make its issue coincident with that of the new Volume of Once a Week for 1869, the paging of the first and second Numbers
The FISHERMEN OF BOULOGNE. .. 14
A TOWN COUSIN IN A Fix. Drawn by
494, 515, 538, 560, 582.
THE BLACKBERRY GATHERERS. Drawn by
A Frosty MORNING. Drawn by HENRY
. . . . 371
July 4, 1868.
LOVE THE AVENGER.
came to an end, it led forth towards the open fields, over a bridge, beside which lay the
pond, where washerwomen were for ever at By the Author of ALL FOR GREED. work, and merged at length, about a mile
further on, into the high-road from Tours to
Flat, flat, dreary, bare, uninteresting. That
unsightly monotony the central French people call an event. Uninteresting? Provinces of France, stands a small village | Yes, to you who pass on and go your way ; called St. Martin. Within memory of not but to those whose way it is to abide here, even the oldest inhabitant, it had been a full of interest, life-stirring and terrible as any hamlet, and its present village-state was an | that ever formed the ground-work of historic evidently transitory one. It was creeping dramas. slowly but steadily on to become a town. Nearly opposite the little dilapidated church, That would depend upon the precise spots with its dumb clock, whose rusty hands chosen as stations for the railway line, when eternally pointed to half-past three, and whose a certain branch, anxiously waited for, should rusty, arrow-shaped weather-cocknever swerved be completed. For the moment, St. Martin from N.N.W., stood a shop with barred door was a village, and, as is usual in even the and closed shutters. Upon a broad stripe of richest French districts, it was neither a pic dirty white, which extended all round the turesque nor a clean one.
habitation, was inscribed in big, black letters As far as it went, the little place was pos the following legend :sessed of all its requisites. It had a mayor
WIDOW RAYNAL, GROCER AND VINTNER. with his belongings, a curé, a schoolmaster, a Garde Champêtre, and a post-mistress. It The shop formed the corner of the street, could want nothing more, and was certain of inasmuch as, whilst one side of it opened being well and sufficiently administered. upon the street, the other had its windows
The five or six hundred individuals com- | upon a small, open space, terminating in a posing the population of St. Martin inhabited narrow, muddy lane, and the door of the shop a collection of stray tenements, irregularly itself formed the apex of the uncouth triangle, dotted about the straight line of road which blunted and flattened by two uneven doorled from Blois to Tours, and which, looked at steps of grey stone. Just across the open from a balloon, would have seemed a mere space we have mentioned (some twenty or patch on the broad, flat garment of the plain. / thirty yards square) rose a building three On the right-hand side, as you came from | stories high, with a smart balcony to its firstBlois, stood the church, a small edifice, floor-a hotel, forsooth! not an inn, or an aleterribly out of repair, with its traditional house, or anything so rustic or unimportantporch, beneath which the peasants congre- but a hotel with a bran new sign, on which was gate on rainy Sundays, and its traditionally blazoned forth, in gold upon bright blue, crooked spire, bent, as the said peasants be- | nothing less than the words, A l'Hôtel de lieve, by the inexorable north-west winds. On l'Europe. either side of, and opposite to, the church, Europe ! Nothing less, it seemed, would suit extended what was called the Street, and, the magniloquence of this village hostelry, very when what the street regarded as its shops empty and forlorn to all appearance in the