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collect the lines which Marten used to say at school :

• Let that be done which Mat. doth say.
«Yea, quoth my Lord, but not to-day.”

CHAP. XV.

An Invasion of the Enemy.

Mr. Dalben had scarcely risen from breakfast the following morning, when Maurice came in with staring eyes and uplifted hands, exclaiming, " Oh, Master, Sir! they be coming ; I seed them myself, as I was in the field over the lane!”

“ Who ?—what?" answered the old gentleman,

all in tremors. “ The young squires, Sir; I seed them myself. There they were galloping, and the dogs along, and Miss, and all of them.”

“ Sure, Maurice, you are as big a fool as ever broke bread," said Mrs. Kitty, stepping in behind the little Irishman.

“ Did not master say that nobody was to come till an hour after breakfast ?" returned Maurice, sharply. Why am I a fool, then ?

To come to frighten master in this way,” retorted Mrs. Kitty.

But it is the young gentlemen from the Ferns, Sir, riding up the lane. What be I to say to them ?» rejoined Maurice.

“ Mr. Bonville,” said Mr. Dalben," it will not suit you to be deprived of your hours of study. Your mother has intrusted you to my charge. These gentlemen are calling on you. Kitty, you must tell them that we are engaged."

Edgar looked embarrassed, but Mr. Dalben was determined ; and Mrs. Kitty had scarcely shut the door before a thundering rap announced the visitors. The hall door was, however, soon shut upon them, and Mrs. Kitty, returning, said,“ Sir, the young gentlemen give their compliments, and they are sorry that Mr. Bonvillle is engaged, but they are riding on with Miss to Powick, and they will call as they come back; and they hope to have the pleasure of Mr. Bonville's and Mr. Milner's company to dinner to-day."

Very well, Kitty," answered Mr. Dalben. And when she was withdrawn, the old gentleman stated, in a very serious manner, to Edgar, the necessity of guarding against every encroachment on his time during the present vacation.

לר

• The crisis to which you are now approaching, Edgar," he said, "is, perhaps, the most important of your whole life ; and to come to the trial which awaits you, with a calm, sedate, and serious mind, is of more consequence than I can describe. Let me intreat you, as a friend, as a paternal friend, not to shut your eyes to the difficulties which await you. I have my fears, strong fears, that you are not so well prepared in your classical studies as you ought to be; and the very consciousness that it

may

be so in the time of trial, will affect you more than

you can now conceive. Now that the trial is at a comparative distance, think, my son, think of all that depends on your passing your examination with credit; think what shame you will entail on yourself, your mother, and all connected with you, if you fail in the trial. What a blight will be cast on all your prospects in life, if religion has, as yet, but a slight influence upon you: yet, at least, let worldly prudence have its sway. Edgar, I have known you only a few days, but I have seen enough in you to make me ardently desire to avert the evil which I dread. Permit me to write to Mr. Hargrave, and state my wishes that you should be left entirely to yourself during this vacation. I speak as a friend, and as a father. Have I your permission to do what I propose ?

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“ You have, Sir," replied Edgar ; " and I thank you : but I wish, Mr. Dalben, that this abominable examination was over. I have no inclination for the church, and I have told my mother so a thousand times; but she pleads my father's dying injunctions, that I should be brought up to the church, and some promise, too, that I myself made to my father; so, I suppose it must be so.

“ We are not now going over that ground again, Edgar," said Mr. Dalben ; “your mother and yourself are to be the judges of this matter. Our present object is, to prepare you for the day of trial which awaits you." “ The day of judgment,” rejoined Edgar.

Well, let it be so," returned Mr. Dalben ; “ and let this vastly inferior trial be the type or emblem of that last day, when the secrets of all men shall be brought to light; and, by what you feel in the contemplation of the type, may you learn to meditate on the infinite importance of the antitype, and hence endeavour to be

prepared for that last day, in which the examination which is to pass under the eye of Omniscience, shall be succeeded by the appointment of a degree among the hierachies of heaven, or an eternal exclusion from the society of the blessed."

Edgar shuddered and looked serious; and

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