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THE

GENTLEMAN'S MAGAZINE.

APRIL 1893.

MARTIN THE SHEPHERD.

BY LILLIAS WASSERMANN. THE bare, leafless trees in the little dell (or dene, locally speakT ing) creaked and groaned in the sad winter wind, and the waters of the burn foamed and fretted about the great grey boulders continuously. A dull, red sun scarce managed to pierce through the prevailing greyness, and masses of blue-black cloud lay low upon the horizon.

Anyone familiar with the district—that wild, bleak, barren country contiguous to the Cheviot range—would have known instinctively that bad weather was in store, that the long-expected snow would make its appearance ere long. Between the fitful gusts of wind there was something solemn and impressive in the aspect of nature, and in the heavy, lifeless atmosphere; something that suggested a breathless waiting for the coming storm.

Meanwhile, the scattered flocks of sheep moved in a leisurely fashion along the steep sides of the fells, and a pair of lovers lingered in the dene, too absorbed in their own insignificant portion of the world's business to pay much attention to the impending trouble.

The girl was young, and on her cheeks bloomed the roses of vigorous health, but she was poorly dressed; while the young man, who was enacting-after a somewhat mean fashion-the part of lover, looked prosperous and well-to-do.

" It's hard upon me, Ralph; you must confess that !” she exclaimed, with a touch of bitterness, as her blue eyes looked wistfully up through a mist of tears. “It isn't ma fault that aw canna keep him straight, and yet aw'm te be punished for it, as if it was ! ”

Ralph turned his head away. He could not bear to meet the
VOL. CCLXXIV. NO. 1948.

Austin Dobson has, of course, given us works of substantial authority on Bewick and other eighteenth-century celebrities. I am not sure, however, that this gallery of miniatures, each one a portrait, is not equally valuable and welcome with any of the more ambitious paintings in oil which we owe to his brush.

“New WINCHELSEA.”

L EW prospects more picturesque than that from the heights at

T Fairlight over Winchelsea can be found in England, and few scenes are richer in historical associations. Sufficiently enjoyable is a trip to the once memorable seaport, some trace of whose former greatness is preserved in the fact that it is one of the Cinque Ports. The visitor, however, who counts upon finding shelter in what is now scarcely more than a village will do well to secure his pied-d-terre beforehand, or he may have to stretch his journey to Hastings. Among the inhabitants of Winchelsea has long been Mr. F. A. Inderwick, Q.C., who seeks on its picturesque plateau a peaceful and pleasing contrast from the scenes in which his life avocations are placed. With a capacity which is rare, and a zeal which is to be commended to general imitation, he has constituted himself an historian of the place of his adoption. Winchelsea possessed already an historian of the conventional order. Very different from a local history is, however, Mr. Inderwick's “Story of King Edward and New Winchelsea.”] It exhibits, indeed, as its second title denotes, “The Edification of a Mediæval Town." Work of this class has unparalleled interest. We see how, under the fostering influence of the First Edward, Winchelsea rose into importance, and how loyally it repaid the obligation by its contributions to the wars with France. An animated picture is given of the various trades that assembled in the spot the King delighted to honour. The very names of the traders are given, and one of the most interesting contributions to antiquarian literature ever made is supplied. A mere enumeration of the classes of inhabitants-military, naval, clerical, and the rest; and of its charities, its institutions, including the pillory and the ducking-stool-would occupy many pages. I can attempt no criticism; but holiday time will come again, and I can fancy no more enjoyable effort than that of the traveller who, with the aid of Mr. Inderwick's delightful book, attempts on the spot to reconstitute Winchelsea.

Sampson Low, Marston, & Co.

SYLVANUS URBAN.

THE

GENTLEMAN'S MAGAZINE

APRIL 1893.

MARTIN THE SHEPHERD.

By LILLIAS WASSERMANN.

THI

HE bare, leafless trees in the little dell (or dene, locally speak

ing) creaked and groaned in the sad winter wind, and the waters of the burn foamed and fretted about the great grey boulders continuously. A dull, red sun scarce managed to pierce through the prevailing greyness, and masses of blue-black cloud lay low upon the horizon.

Anyone familiar with the district—that wild, bleak, barren country contiguous to the Cheviot range--would have known instinctively that bad weather was in store, that the long-expected snow would make its appearance ere long. Between the fitful gusts of wind there was something solemn and impressive in the aspect of nature, and in the heavy, lifeless atmosphere; something that suggested a breathless waiting for the coming storm.

Meanwhile, the scattered flocks of sheep moved in a leisurely fashion along the steep sides of the fells, and a pair of lovers lingereủ in the dene, too absorbed in their own insignificant portion of the world's business to pay much attention to the impending trouble.

The girl was young, and on her cheeks bloomed the roses of vigorous health, but she was poorly dressed; while the young man, who was enacting-after a somewhat mean fashion—the part of lover, looked prosperous and well-to-do.

“It's hard upon me, Ralph; you must confess that !” she exclaimed, with a touch of bitterness, as her blue eyes looked wistfully up through a mist of tears. “ It isn't ma fault that aw canna keep him straight, and yet aw'm te be punished for it, as if it was !” Ralph turned his head away. He could not bear to meet the

NO, 1948.

VOL. CCLXXIV,

Z

pathetic appeal of her eyes. He had imagined himself stronger until that moment. It had required some courage to face the ordeal, which proved worse than he had anticipated.

He was a fine, athletic-looking young fellow, but there was a feebleness about his mouth and jaw that did not promise much moral stamina.

“It's to be all ower betwixt us, then, because yer feyther wishes it?” the girl went on, in a tremulous voice.

Ralph shuffled about from one foot to the other for a minute or two, then he burst out:

“How can aw say it-what would ye hev me do, Nelly? If the aad man turns me off aw've nowt o' my own te live on, Aw mun stick te the farm and te him-damn him! Ye wadn't like te see me hire oot for a hind or a shepherd-me that's been browt up decently?"

Nelly knew nothing of the world. In this remote north-country nook had her whole life been passed, and from the larger life that books might have opened out, her lack of education had debarred her. Nevertheless, she was a woman, and had intuitions. It crossed her mind now that a man who loved a woman truly and unselfishly, might, without much self-denial, do more heroic things for her sake. But she said nothing.

She loved him, and she wished to believe the best of him.

As Ralph Wilson looked at her he recognised that for himself, as well as for the girl, this separation which circumstances had rendered imperative was a real hardship.

Where, in all that country-side, could her equal be found in looks, manners, sweetness of disposition, loyalty of heart? Though she was only the child of a drunken, disreputable old shepherd, she could hold her own against any of the farmers' daughters in the neighbourhood.

It was this fact of her unfortunate parentage that had proved the stumbling-block to their happiness. They had been thrown together from childhood, for Martin Daglish, the shepherd, had grown old in Farmer Wilson's employment, and an attachment had sprung up between them when Nelly bloomed into womanhood; but, alas for the course of true love! it had from the first been shadowed by the shame and degradation of the girl's father.

During the course of the year that was drawing to a close, the drunkard had made a tremendous effort, for the sake of his child, whom he fondly loved, to reform ; and Farmer Wilson had, rather reluctantly, given his consent to the marriage. He thought that Ralph might have done better, in a worldly sense, than marry Nelly

Daglish. There were farmers' daughters about who had both money and good connections, and the lad was a fool to throw himself away; but she was a good, useful, industrious girl all the same, and, if only the old man fulfilled his promise and kept steady, there wasn't much to be said against the match.

That "if”! A month before this, the shepherd had broken out again, worse than ever for his enforced abstinence, and had become the object of public scorn and contumely.

Then it was that Farmer Wilson interfered with a high hand, and withdrew his consent peremptorily. It was all very well to marry a poor girl—though even that was a foolish concern when capital was required to develop the resources of the land ; but to marry a poor girl whose father was a shame and a disgrace to the neighbourhood, was too idiotic an act to be tolerated, without some endeavour being made to put a stop to it.

The farmer had, therefore, a rather stormy interview with his only son. At first the lad stuck to his resolution to marry Nelly at all hazards, and trust to their united efforts either to keep the old shepherd steady, or to give him the cold shoulder. But Farmer Wilson was a man of the world, and he knew the fallacy of these hopes. Old Martin Daglish was past reformation in his eyes ; and even Ralph acknowledged that he was not himself sanguine about it. And Nelly would stick to her father through thick or thin ; that was the worst of it !

Ralph Wilson was weak, though well-intentioned, and he proved as wax in his father's hands.

Before the conclusion of the scene he had promised to see Nelly, and to induce her to give him back his plighted troth.

The interview now proceeding was the result of that promise.

“Don't you imagine that you have the worst of it, Nelly,” said Ralph, as he felt again the charm of her presence; "these things come more hard to a man than a woman, because they're not so patient."

Nelly sighed.

“But men can go away, and forget all about their disappoint. ments! They ha' lots to think about. But we women folk—we just ha' to bide it, and say nothin', though our hearts be ever so sore ! Oh Ralph, lad, I wish we'd never seen one another !”

Ralph, moved by a sudden impulse, drew the girl to him, and, with passionate vehemence kissed her lips over and over again.

“I cannot help it—they are the last,” he muttered apologetically, as he reluctantly released her ; “but it is cruel-downright cruel

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