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hapless criminal, condemned to a task equally overwhelming :
Και μην Σίσυφον εισείδον, κρατερ άλγε έχοντα,
Eccoti, benigno lettore, un parto di poche sere, che se ben nato di notte, non è pero aborto di tenebre; ma si farà conoscere figlio d'Apollo, con qualche raggio di Parnasso.
Get money,-money still,
BLESSED be they who, for the benefit of the younger brotherhood of this glorious and favoured island (cheers from the Treasury benches !) keep open house at their country seats from Christmas till Easter.
That year, and many years succeeding and preceding, did I manage to get rid of myself at the cost of my own time and the venison of my noble friends, the Earl of B-, and the Duke of AM, and so forth, to whom it was essential during the hunting season that their dinner table should be surrounded by wellknown faces, reflecting honour and glory upon their fare and fair.-Blessed, I say again, be they who, at a season of the year when other capitals concentrate their population for social enjoyment,--defying frost or rain in crowded theatres, or brilliant ball-rooms, whose blazing illumination supplies the deficiencies of sunsbine,-offer premiums for the encouragement of attempts at sociability in some isolated castle, posted like a dunce in disgrace for example sake, on the top of a hill; where people, eat, drink, hunt, and shoot, at the expense
of their entertainer, repaying him on their return to town by filling the clubs with attestations of the merits of their entertainment. I really do not believe it cost either the Duke or Earl much more than twenty thousand a year a piece, to have it said in London that their country house was not a bore.
I had now progressed to the time of life when one becomes conscious that such masters of country seats deserve well of their country.
- No longer young enough to be put off by the groom of the chambers with a smoky room, or dressing-room near the offices within sound of smoke-jacks, or smell of Jacks who smoke,
-no longer young enough to be made a target for the attacks of pretty women or witty men, -no longer an object for practical jokes, or practical earnest, I had progressed into one of the walking gentlemen of such parties.-I was Cecil,-there to be amused, not to be amusing ;—Cecil, whose arrival looked well in the newspapers,-Cecil, with his own particular room,-hisown particular chair,-his own particular vintage,--the protégé of stewards, butlers, and housekeepers ;—the Mr. Danby against whose arrival a particular buck was set apart by the gamekeeper ;—the Mr. Danby who enjoyed among the housemaids the privilege of a certain number of extra jugs of hot
water per diem ; and during whose stay the breakfast bell, per connivance of the servants' hall, was rung half an hour later than usual.
All this was pleasant enough. My club seemed to tour it out of town with me, in my easy chaise. Still, one must not hope to cumuler les bénéfices dans ce bas monde ; and I admit that, if sure of a better bed-room and calmer repose under its curtains, I was by no means so certain of depriving the pillows of others of their rest, as in the times when I was put up among the cubs of Bachelor's gallery.
Well do I remember how every night when the female kind had shut up their work-boxes, and were retiring from the drawing-room, the last look cast from the door by one or more of that bevy of fair faces, invariably singled me out, like a dear from the herd ;-and delightful it was to snatch up a book or newspaper, to conceal my observations and emotions from the brothers, lovers, husbands, around me; all