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" The Printed Word1

g BOOKS AND THEIR BUILDERS RECOLLECTIONS AND REVIEWS

From Goldwin Smith's "Reminis-

cences":-"There seems to be little '

doubt that Louis Napoleon was the son j

of the Dutch Admiral Verhuel. Court < painters and sculptors struggled in vain to give him the Napoleonic brow. Per- haps his Dutch phlegm and reticence gave him some advantage over the vo- latile Frenchmen with whom he had to

deaL" j

When Bulwer Lytton had quarrelled with his wife, and stood for Parlia- ment, his consort drove up in a post

chaise, mounted the hustings, and de- ! livered a philippic against him. Then son was credited with some lines on the occasion:

Who came to Hertford in a chaise? And uttered anything but praise About the author of my days

My mother.

? ^

"L.": Apropos Randolph Bedford and the letter to the effect that certain statements made about him must be classed as legend, should this pictur- esque story be placed in the same cate- gory? When Randolph, years ago. was advance agent of a travelling show, he arrived in a little mining town in Vic- toria, and wandered into the editorial sanctum of the local newspaper. As the editor was out, Randolph took a chair to await his return, and fell to scan- ning the day's issue. On his return the editor and Randolph entered into dia- logue:

Editor: Reading the news?

Randolph: Looking for the news. Editor: Want anything?

Randolph: Not as much as you do. Editor: What do we want? Randolph: An editor:

Confusion! Blasphemy! Exit!

Lord Morley makes a vivacious re- ference in the " Nineteenth Century " to thc M-P.'s habit of asking ques-

tions.

" All sorts of questions have been asked," he says. So they were, and always will be, not only about India, but about Egypt, about foreign policy, about the Navy. To prepare the answers consumes wastefully but perhaps not wholly without prout the time of the Miriíter and the office. I 1 hey are a nuisance to ambassadors

and sea-lord?, and overworked secre- taries at Simla. After all, they are like bad weather, of which both offi- cers and men have to make the bast, and tiie best is not so bad as to be at all unbearable."

A Melbourne parson, we noticed the j other day, has been holding up the cha- : racter of old Socrates to the admiration ; of his Hock. Well, the ancient philoso- I plier deserves it. But we'll bet a trifle ! that the parson refrained from quot- J

ing Soc's definition of death (when condemned to it) :-"Death is either an eternal and dreamless sleep, where there is no sensation at all; or lt is a journey to another and a better world, where are the famous men of old. But which it is no man can say." (Have all the churches taught us anything more in 2300 years?) Also, we suspect the cleric kept to himself, if he ever read it, the tribute of Alcibiades the toper to another aspect of the famous sage's character:-"He never drank much willingly, but when he was compelled he conquered all, even in that to which he was least accustomed; and, what is most astonishing, no person ever saw Socrates drunk, even then." Verily they were tough timber, some of those old Greeks. Did anybody ever hear of a modern philosopher who could not only down everybody else in theological argument, but drink everybody under the table as well, without turning a hair

himself?

"Saladin": The question as to whether the plural of "Referendum" should be. "Referenda" or "Referendums" reminds me of the confusion created by the in- troduction into Labor circles of the word "Plebiscite." The first time we were called upon to wrestle with it was at Blackall and Barcaldine, in Central Queensland, some twenty odd years ago, when the first draft of the Consti- tution of the Australian Labor Fede- ration was discussed. Billy Lane, after-

wards the Paraguay fanatic, had a good, deal to do with that constitution, and j the word plebiscite was trotted in "ire- ]

quent and free" as the panacea for all

the earthly ills. Mulga Taylor was i there (then known as George the Na- tive), but the new word beat him in the

first round. Charley M'Donald (now i Federal Speaker) baulked at it and the i

secretary of the Queensland, Shearers' j Union, Bill Keirîey (since dead), who I

had to read the Constitution clause by I

clause, got a different hold on the word j

every time he carne across it. "Pie- ] bistic." "plebiskite," '"plel-isccit." and j "pebble-stick"-these were some of j the pronunciations, and at the first | adjournment there was a record liunt I for dictionaries. But they'were scarce articles in Central Queensland those

( A yam oí G. A. Sala. The late Mr.

j Levy, of the "Daily Telegraph," once

asked bim, "Have you any objection j to our editing your copy in the office, ¡Mr. Sala?" "Sir. Levy," was the an jswer, "I am like a butcher. I sell i you so much meat-to me it is a mat-

ter of profound indifference whether you serve it fried, boiled or roasted."

BELLS OF VAREtvNA.

Drowsy and Bweet "atong the Lexian

Lake

Tour melody ls stealing; Tour fitful pealing

Floats on the pinion of a summer night. Aloft the murmuring upland echoes

wake

And wing upon the mountains. Whence flying fountains

Thin their wild whiteness out o'er many

a height.

Bells of Varenna, Bells of Varenna Ancient bells. Solemn bells.

Bells, Bells.

A tall grey campanile and a spire Of russet red upsprfnging. Meet for your ringing,

O most melodious, mediaeval chime,

Arise and point with fane of moonlight

fire

To forests and snow ridges And far-flung bridges

And ruined castles of the olden time.

Bells of "Varenna,

Bells of Varenna Dulcet bells.

Dreaming bells.

Bells, > Bells.

I

Along a floor of crystal, where the

moon.

From lier bine mansion beading. Awaits the sending

O' your deep benison and soft "good

night,"

Canorous cadence comes. Too soon, toe

soon.

Faint off the last tar throbbing And silver sobbing

By Como's patined pathway, still and

bright.

Bells of Varenna,

Bells of Varenna Sleeping bells. Weary bells.

Bells, Bells.

t - .-Eden. PhUlpotts.

A Bret Harte story quoted by Mrs. j T. P. O'Connor : "Years ago, when 1

was a very young man and living in i California, a beautiful young lady,

who was separated from .her husband, ; in order to eke out her income took ¡ ! a few paying gnests-I was one of j them. I at once fell in love with her, land we became rather more than

friends. I pawned one or two very happy years in her house. Then a brother of hera, a clergy utan from the East, proposed coming to California for the winter. Suddenly her consci- ence woke up, and I was told that I must find a home elsewhere. I was going to another town anyhow to edit j a small paper, and so we parted on

the most affectionate terms. Before we I met again her divorce would have end-

ed, and 1 had every intention of marrying her. That winter I wrote 'The Luck of Roaring Camp,' and she got her divorce, and married a mii i lionaire, becoming a leader of society ! and eminently respectable. One day a ', friend sent mc a magazine, and in it, I ; think, was the bitterest attack on me ! and on my story that 1 have ever read. It said 1 was advocating vice instead of virtue, and that every vir- tuous woman should boycott tbs story, and not stop there, but boycott nie. Now a publisher had undertaken to make a small book ,of The Luck oí Roaring Camp' and uome of my other j tales. It was he who called my at ; tention to this article, and told me . that he also knew the author. I ] thought it was some orthodox, ex- tremely narrow-minded man, probably a Puritan Yankee, so what was my surprise when he told me a lady had written it, naming my former love. He said at the moment she was in town, opening a bazaar, and suggested that I should gp down and muzzle her, so that she would not again bite mc to tie bone. I went to the bazaar. She was there, looking like a pure angel, and when I spoke to her she said, quite clearly, *Mr. Harte, no self-re- specting woman can talk to you after writing "The Luck of Roajring Cam?." I inust bid you good day !' I lifted my hat and went out, and never saw her again." t

Wonder if she was the original of the pretty landlady mentioned in the delightful story "Baby Sylvester ?"

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