14. Let us look into the future for the sequel to perfect this romance, and around a cheerful hearth we see again Geoffrey and Beatrice, who are paying due homage to their tiny friend Leicester.
1. A sacrilegious son of Belial, who suffered from bronchitis and diphtheria, and had taken much morphine and quinine, having exhausted his finances, in order to make good the deficit, resolved to ally himself to a complaisant, lenient, docile, young woman of the Caucasian race. Buying a calliope, a coral necklace, an illustrated magazine, and a falcon from Asia, he took a suite of rooms, whose acoustic properties were excellent, and engaged a Malay as his coadjutor.
2. Being of an epicurean disposition, he threw the culinary department of his hotel into confusion by ordering for his dinner vermicelli soup, a bologna sausage, anchovies, calf’s brains fried, and half a gooseberry pie. For the resulting dyspepsia he took acetic and tartaric acid, according to allopathy, and when his aunt, a fair matron of six decades, called, he was tyrannic and combative, and laughed like a brigand until she was obliged to succumb to his contumacy.
3. Etiquette being thus annihilated, he became amenable to tenderer passions. He sent a letter, inviting his inamorata to a matinee, together with an eighteen-carat gold ring. She revolted at the idea of accompanying him, and sent a note full of piquant raillery, which led her suitor to procure a carbine and a sword, with some apparatus, and to declare that he would not forge hymeneal chains upon any one.
4. So proceeding to an isolated spot, without comrades, he severed his jugular vein, and discharged the carbine into his abdomen. When inquiry was made, he was found dead, and the coroner sat on the debris and did his exact duty, though it was no couch of eider he occupied.
5. Had the misguided youth read Ovid less often, and given precedence to Hemans and Ingelow, his fate might have been different. True, he might have hung on a greasy gallows like a highwayman, in squalor, and been the sport of canines for aye; while now, disarmed by death, he lies in a splendid mausoleum, far from the wharves and haunts of men, and can’t accent his antepenults, and afford the greatest discrepancies extant in pronunciation.
SELECT READING—THE BLACKBOARD AND CHALK.
1. Learned sages may reason, the
fluent may talk,
But they ne’er can compute what we owe to the chalk.
From the embryo mind of the infant of four,
To the graduate, wise in collegiate lore;
From the old district school-house to Harvard’s proud hall,
The chalk rules with absolute sway over all.
2. Go, enter the school-room of primary
And see how conspicuous the blackboard is made.
The teacher makes letters and calls them by name,
And says to the children, “Now all do the same;”
Mere infants you see, scarcely able to walk,
But none are too feeble to handle the chalk.