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to church on that day. On their return home, they found the lady in a calmer frame of mind. But Mr. Ballman looked grave and was unusually silent. Kitty came home and gave up her elegant head-dress; and when her mistress told her that she might keep it, she thanked her, but declined the present.

“ You went to church, of course," she said.
“Oh, yes, mum,” replied Kitty.
“And sat in the Arinburner's pew?"
“ Yes, mum.”
" Alone.”
“ Yes, mum."
“ Was Mrs. Claudine there?"
“Yes, mum."
“ Did she wear her new bonnet ?"
“ Yes, mum.”
“It was exactly like this ?"

Oh, no, mum, it was exactly like the new one you had sent home this morning.”

" What!" The face of the lady flushed instantly 66 Wasn't it like this ?”

“No, mum.
Mrs. Ballman sunk into a chair.

“ You can retire, Kitty,” she said, and the girl withdrew, leaving her to her own feelings and reflections, which were not of the most pleasing character.

The appearance of Kitty at church, fully explained to Mrs. Claudine the ungenerous game that had been played against her. Her first thought was to retaliate. But reflection brought other and better feelings into play. Instead of exposing what had been done, she destroyed the

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bonnet received from New York, and made an effort to keep what had occurred a secret. But Kitty's appearance at church in such an elegant affair, naturally created some talk. One surmise after another was started, and, at last, from hints dropped by the milliner, and admissions almost extorted from Mrs. Claudine, the truth came out so fully, that all understood it; nor was Mrs. Ballman long left in ignorance on this head.

As to the fashion, Mrs. Claudine's bonnet became the rage; though, as might be supposed, Mrs. Ballman refused to adopt it.

Who will be the successful rival next season, I am unable to predict. But it is believed that I Mrs. Claudine intends giving Mrs. Ballman an advance of two weeks, and then coming in with a different style, and beating her in spite of the advantage.

CHAPTER XXVII.

MY WASHERWOMAN.

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We were sitting at tea one evening—Mr.

WE Smith, my sister and her husband, Mr. John Jones, and myself. In the midst of a pleasant conversation, Bridget looked into the dining-room. 66 What is wanted ?" said I.

Mary Green is down stairs.”
“Oh! the washerwoman."
“ Yes ma'am.”
“Well, what does she want?”

I knew what she wanted well enough. She had come for two dollars that I owed her. I felt annoyed. “Why?" the reader asks. “Obligations of this kind should always be met promptly and cheerfully.”

True; and I am of those who never grudge the humble poor the reward of their labor. But, it so happened that I had received a pretty liberal supply of money from my husband on this very day, all of which I had spent in shopping. Some of my purchases could not be classed exactly under the head, "Articles of Domestic Economy, and I was, already, in rather a repentant moodthe warmth of admiration at the sight of sundry ornamental trifles having subsided almost as soon

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as I found myself their owner. To my question, Bridget very promptly answered,

“ She's come for her money.

When a woman feels annoyed, she is rarely able to repress its exhibition. Men are cooler, and have a quicker self-control. They make better hypocrites.

“She's very prompt," I remarked, a little fretfully, as I took out my porte-monnaie. Now I did not possess twenty cents, and I knew it; still, I fingered among its compartments as if in search of the little gold dollars that were not there. “ Hav'nt you th

change ?” enquired Mr. Smith, at the same time drawing forth his purse, through the meshes of which the gold and silver coin glittered in the gas light.

“ No dear," I replied, feeling instant relief.

“Help yourself,” said he, as he tossed the purse to my side of the table. I was not long in accepting the invitation you may be sure.

“ Dont think,” said I, after Bridget had retired, “ that I am one of those who grudge the toiling poor the meagre wages they earn. I presume I looked, as I spoke, a little annoyed. The fact is, to tell the honest truth, I have not a dollar in my porte-monnaie; this with the not very pleasant consciousness of having spent several dollars today rather foolishly, fretted me when the just demand of the washerwoman came.”

“ I will exonerate my wife from any suspicion of grinding the faces of the poor.” Mr. Smith spoke promptly and with some earnestness of manner. After a slight pause, he continued,

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“Some people have a singular reluctance to part with money. If waited on for a bill, they say, almost involuntarily, 'Call to-morrow,' even though their pockets are far from being empty.

“I once fell into this bad habit myself; but, a little incident, which I will relate, cured me. Not many years after I had attained my majority, , a poor widow named Blake did my washing and ironing. She was the mother of two or three little children, whose sole dependance for food and raiment was on the labor of her hands.

“ Punctually, every Thursday morning, Mrs. Blake appeared with my clothes, white as the driven snow ;' but, not always, as punctually, did I

pay the pittance she had earned by hard labor.

“ • Mrs. Blake is down stairs,' said a servant tapping at my room door, one morning, while I was in the act of dressing myself. "Oh, very well,' I replied. "Tell her to

· leave my clothes. I will get them when I come down.

“ The thought of paying the seventy-five cents, her due, crossed my mind. But, I said to myself,

Its but a small matter, and will do as well when she comes again.

“There was in this a certain reluctance to part with money. My funds were low, and I might need what change I had during the day. And so it proved. As I went to the office in which I was engaged, some small article of ornament caught my eye in a shop window.

«Beautiful!' said I, as I stood looking at it. Admiration quickly changed into the desire for

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