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if yuh know yer own mind, I'm ready, an' if yuh want to think it over, why I'll walk home with yuh, or I'll wait a week. I ain't in no hurry."

Miss Dean was staring through the opposite wall at things that eyes see not. The present proposal could hardly be said to have come to her in the garb of a temptation; still she was debating it. Its length had enabled her to recover from her surprise, to get over the utter impossibility of this possible event. She was telling herself that she was now entirely without prospects or means of support; that she would never again be younger than at the present moment; that the struggle for life had already robbed her of her too frail beauty and its evanescent charm; that she could not reasonably expect ever to have a better chance to marry; that this at least meant food and shelter. And otherwise? Her eyes grew warm and bright. Otherwise the future, enriched and peopled with her dreams. All that she had ever wanted was in the future, -it must be, for she had had nothing,nothing. It was all waiting for her there,-fame, love, splendor, her ideal.

She had had none of these things,they were all there. Who would hesitate a moment? She would walk from this place, that would give her money to get started to doing something else, when she reached somewhere.

An apologetic cough brought her back to the present.

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"O, I-I-beg your pardon," she stammered. "I thank you, you are very kind, but I do not care to marry. I—think we had better go." They passed out together. She locked the door and gave him the key. Through the avenue of sweet-scented pines they passed down the hill. The air was languorous. How old he was, and how ugly! What was he walking home with her for? Probably because it was the most direct way to his own home. Well! -a whiff of air, laden with the smell of fried bacon, coffee, and soda biscuits, came from a house near by. How good it was! Probably they would never be hungry.

She need never be hungry.

She was at her gate now. She went in, closed it, and turned. He was waiting. Through the bars of the gate she held out her hand.

L. B. Bridgman.

སྐ་བ། .


From the French of A. de Pontmartin.

THOUGH NOW nearly sixty-eight years of age, I grow young again to tell you my story. It is February, 1830, and I am a medical student at the Children's Hospital, Rue de Sèvres, under Doctor Jadelot, one of the celebrities of the time.

My father, a rich notary of Mans, being also an influential elector and an able man of affairs, had rendered important services to the Baron de La Bouillerie, then manager of the privy purse of Charles X. I was a classmate at college of Francis de La Bouillerie (now Coadjutor of the Archbishop of Bordeaux, after having been Bishop of Carcassonne), and having won the first prize in a general competition, and being highly recommended by my father to the good graces of the baron, one of the best and most hospitable of men, I was soon cordially received at their home. On the day that I announced to Francis my admission, he said:

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Just in time! You can come to us tomorrow night to celebrate your success; we shall have a little music. Madame Malibran and Mlle. Sontag will sing, accompanied by Rossini. My mother and the illustrious composer have even plotted together to effect a reconciliation between the two great cantatrices, who you know cordially detest each other. We hope to bring about a moment when, intoxicated with melody, enchanted with their own accents, and carried away by our enthusiasm, they will forget their enmity, and end by becoming friends and kissing."

"And I'd give a good deal to be in their place!" I said, not in the least suspecting that I was talking to a future bishop.

As you will suppose, madame, I was

careful not to miss that delightful party. It was a sort of juste milieu (which expression had not yet been invented) between a formal reception and a reunion of intimate friends. We were fifty in all; but what names! And how my young heart beat,-I with my reputation yet to make,- when they pointed out to me amid those groups of notabilities, M. de Lamartine, whose Poetic Harmonies were about to be published; Berryer, the new deputy of unexampled brilliancy; the Vicomte de Bonald, almost an octogenarian, but still as solid as any oak of his old Rouergue; Victor Hugo, whose drama of Hernani was announced on the bills of the Theâtre Français for the following week; M. de Martignac, pale and melancholy, as though he had a double presentiment of his approaching end and the downfall of the throne; Paër, author of Maître de Chapelle, and consumed with jealousy of Rossini; Charles Nocher, of whom Jules Janin said that with his vivid imagination he would end by assuring us that he had been guillotined in 1793 between the Queen and Mme. Roland; Cherubini, at whose frown the whole Conservatoire trembled; and Mlle. Delphine Gay, a blonde beauty robed in white, with full shoulders and the profile of a Roman empress, successful in being at once the "Muse de la Patrie" with the liberal party, and the favorite of two or three duchesses of the Faubourg Saint Germain.

All of those celebrities made me vividly realize my own insignificance: to restore my confidence somewhat, however, I caught a glimpse of the ludicrous countenance of the Viscount d'Arlincourt, whose forehead was ornamented with a flat curled lock, that I have never

forgotten. The author of the Solitaire
believed most implicitly in his own ge-
nius, which made him doubly ludicrous;
he really thought himself the mental
equal of all those about him, with also
something of Chateaubriand, Lord By-
ron, and Walter Scott. He had, as well,
as they, his portrait lithographed, with
an eagle overhead and clouds beneath.
"If he has made his mark," thought I,
"there is a chance that I, also, may be-
come celebrated."

Bordogni, Zuchelli, and Santini, opened the concert by singing the trio Papatacci, from the Italiana in Algieri. Next a lovely young girl, then still called Mlle. Moke, but destined one day to somewhat too much notoriety as Mme. Pleyel, obtained great applause by her marvelous execution of a sonata of Beethoven. At length, the two stars made their dazzling appearance. Shall I try to picture them to you? When I have told you that you resemble Mme. Malibran, I shall need the brush of Cot to complete the sense of my phrase. Nevertheless, I take the risk.

The contrast between those two exquisite women was so striking that they harmonized superbly. Mlle. Sontag was a perfect type of German beauty, such as the poets make us dream of, but we so rarely meet in real life. That which rendered her incomparable in the terrible rôle of Doña Anna was, that she opposed to the sensual fury of Spanish passion all the most ethereal, most chaste attributes of the poetry of the North. The elegance of her figureslender, without being thin-accorded admirably with the regularity of her features and the expression of her face. Her hair was of that warm, golden hue that best accompanies a tea-rose tinted skin; her eyes of violet blue were sweetly sad; and her lips seemed now and again to smile at the invisible, or speak to the unknown. The ideal, the cherished ideal of our youth, vague as a dream without awakening, soft as the

kisses of a sister, fresh as the dew of April, pure as Himalayan snows, timid as the bird that slips through our fingers, melancholy as the hint of a storm in the midst of the splendors of a spring morning, the ideal revealed in a form of unparalleled delicacy, and singing with an angel's voice, thus I recall Mlle. Sontag from my memories of the past. Mme. Malibran ! Musset has rendered her immortal; how dare I describe her? She was a brunette, pale with that healthy whiteness that seems to promise long life. Her jetty locks were parted over a snowy forehead resplendent with genius, whose unextinguishable flame beamed forth, also, from her dark, almond-shaped eyes. Those eyes constantly surprised us by their alternations of consuming ardor and irresistible languor. The lower part of the face was, perhaps, lacking in regularity. The mouth was somewhat wide; the chin a trifle too long; but only the eyes of one whose heart was twenty degrees colder than the ice of Spitzbergen could have seen those almost imperceptible defects. As a whole, the face was adorable, and possessed an extraordinary facility of transformation, which enabled it to portray equally well the lively humor of Rosina, the dramatic emotion of La Gazza, and the tragic intensity of Otello. As a woman, "La Malibran" was attractive and astonishing in the extreme. She seemed at once to have something Spanish, something Creole, even at times a dash of the Paris gamin, combined with the womanly coquetry and bewitching graces of the Parisienne by adoption. The full extent of her beauty could be appreciated only by seeing her in the third act of Otello, bending over her harp, her hair flowing unbound over her bare shoulders, real tears in her gazelle-like eyes, and enveloped in the folds of that gown of gauze which, by its seductive indiscretions, so seriously interfered with the examinations of the Law School and Medical College. Cer

tainly she had, she also, her share of duet Rossini arose, with evidences of spiritual charm; but in addition, un- the most sincere emotion: “Oh! it is known perhaps to herself, she exercised over the senses an irresistible fascination. But what am I saying, madame? I should have contented myself with painting her portrait only; and gazing on you, I could but have flattered it.

Rossini took his place at the piano; Mlle. Sontag sang the Cavatina of Il Barbier, "Una voce poco fa"; after, Mme. Malibran gave us the air of La Gazza, "Di piacer mi balza il cor!" To make you understand how those two airs were sung, I have only to repeat what was whispered on all sides: "She surpasses herself; it seems as though they were defying each other; never, never again, will singing like that be heard!"

Then came the grand duo of Semiramis and Arsaces; "Eh! ben a te ferisci!" The only fault of that delightful music is that it is a little too ornate; the two singers took advantage of that fact to scatter all through the original notes yet more embellishments, but of such exquisite effect that the composer, instead of growing angry, appeared overjoyed. But when came the celebrated andante, "Giorno d'orrore, Giorno di contente!"-when the notes of defiance and menace exchanged between mother and son were followed by the song of peace and tenderness: "T'arresta o Dio," and those two voices united, or rather melted one into the other with incomparable suavity, then the enthusiasm of that audience of dilettanti became a veritable ecstasy. "How can they hate one another when their voices accord so divinely?" said a voice just behind me. I saw tears in many beautiful eyes. All the icy dignity of social decorum had melted as completely away as though an invisible fairy had waved over our heads her magic wand.

It was the culminating point of the soirée, the moment hoped and waited for by the hostess. At the end of the

too beautiful!" said he; "ladies, you must be thanked with a kiss!" and, to give the example he pressed the two rivals in his arms; then, with a quick, friendly movement pushed one towards the other.

But alas! the ice had formed again. more quickly than it had disappeared. Mme. Malibran took a step backwards; Mlle. Sontag, very proud, certain to become completely a grand lady by her approaching marriage with Count Rossi, showed not a whit more eagerness; in short, the reconciliation conspiracy was a complete failure.

To effect a diversion during the stiff interval that ensued, Rudolph d'Appony, the social favorite of that memorable winter, rushed to the piano and played first the "Invitation to the Waltz" of Weber; then, the waltz of Der Freischütz. Immediately the eldest son of the house invited Mlle. Sontag to dance. Handsome Antony de Noailles led off Mme. Malibran. was then, perhaps, for the first time that that absurd rule of precedence, which in aristocratic salons made a great artist the inferior of any titled idiot, was suppressed.


The prodigality of misers and the bravery of cowards has often. been cited. That music had plunged me into such a state of intoxication that I was no longer myself, a poor timid student, but a dreamer, a personage of Hoffman, wandering among unknown worlds. I forgot my timidity, and invited Mme. Malibran for the third waltz. She accepted, looking at me with a little maternal air, irresistibly droll, for she was only two years my senior. I waltzed only passably well; but strange to say Desdemona also was a poor waltzer. She spoke of it herself, adding, "Thank God! there is nothing German about me," with too-evident malice. Five minutes afterwards we

stopped, and she said to me in Spanish Can you imagine, madame, the effect something that I did not understand of that singing, all in softest tones, very literally, but that meant: "That amid the bare walls of a hospital ward? great blonde! What a piece of affecta- It was like a beam of dawn, breaking tion! O, no, I'm not ready to kiss her!" little by little through the darkness of which rang in my ears as the only false a winter night. The good sisters had note of the evening. never before had such a treat; they joined their hands, held their breath, and lifted to heaven their humid eyes, believing perhaps they were hearing one of those angels whom Lamartine says "God Himself listens to."

When our waltz was over, Mme. Malibran asked me to see if her carriage had arrived, "for," said she, "it is much past midnight and tomorrow I must be up very early."

The next day, at seven in the morning, I was at the Children's Hospital, Rue de Sèvres.

I found the good sisters in a state of consternation. Doctor Jadelot had just ordered a bath for a child siezed with convulsions; but the child resisted the execution of the prescription with such violence that it was evident if they tried to bathe him by force, the horrible spasms would augment, and he might die before even entering the water. What must be done?

At that moment a young woman came towards us whom, to my great surprise, I recognized as Mme. Malibran. It has been said that when making such visits she wore the dress of a sister of charity, but that is not true. She would have regarded such a disguise as a profanation, and was attired most simply in black. The sisters, who seemed used to her presence among them, briefly told her of their dilemma.

She went up to the child, who was still suffering intensely, and said, in a caressing voice,

"My boy, if I sang you a pretty song, would n't you be willing to get into that bath, which will make you well?"

The child, more and more agitated, made no reply,—indeed, seemed scarcely to have heard; but Mme. Malibran, hoping still to persuade him, sang her celebrated ballad, "Bonheur de te revoir," then a bolero of Madrid, "Io che son contrabandista!" a popular song of which she had made a chef-d'œuvre.

As for me, I fell once more under the charm of the evening before; but the child remained completely insensible to that wonderful talent, so charitably employed in his behalf. He was either too young to understand, or in too much pain to enjoy it. When the sisters once more tried to carry him towards the bath, he struggled in their arms like one possessed, uttering the while such piercing screams that they were obliged to desist.

"It is no use," said a young sister,. with tears in her eyes. "We can only let him die!"

Then Mme. Malibran had an inspiration. Taking one of the child's hot hands in hers, she said with a smile of heavenly sweetness,

"Dear little one, if I get into the bath, will you not come with me?"

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