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rise before us by scores when we think of these gallant doings, - among them the strange black dog who came to the lone widow's house the night she had with her all the proceeds of the sale of her effects, fought manfully till he drove off the thieves who assailed the house, and disappeared so mysteriously next morning, that she always regarded him as a special messenger of Providence for her protection. The touching picture of “Rab and his friends” is no unique incident; it is only that in Dr. John Brown it met with a spectator and biographer able to appreciate and regard the beautiful affection and fidelity that our Maker has embodied before our eyes in these His good creatures. If, as some wise men have deemed, the brutes are created to show us, in living shape, figures and emblems of our own qualities, the dog, with his master taking to him the place of our Great Master, is most certainly the living type of that heart-whole devotion which is the root of Golden Deeds.
But we must pass on to the latest of which we have heard, and then turn aside from the roll that has truly been a labor of love and refreshment.
It was in Australia, — that great and somewhat repulsive southern island, or rather continent, that has deranged the convenient old geographical arrangement of four quarters of the world, and willingly or unwillingly has received a large proportion of the English population, before whom the poor feeble native race are fast dwindling away.
Under English management, Australia is excellent for sheep farms; but the “bush,” as colonists everywhere call uncleared forest land, is particularly desolate and dreary. And it was into such bush that, in the winter of 1864, the three little children of a carpenter, named Duff, at a station near Melbourne, were often sent out to gather broom. The eldest was a boy of nine years old ; Jane, his sister,
was seven, and little Frank was five. One evening they did not come back, and their parents became alarmed. There are, indeed, in Australia no dangerous wild beasts, such as the bears that two little lost Canadian babes once called to as their father's oxen, “Buck” and “Bell”; but, on the other hand, there are no raspberries, such as sustained those little wanderers, not even the “blackberries" that “dyed the pretty lips” of our own “ Babes in the Wood,” — only dull gum-trees, with oddly-shaped cones and blue upright leaves, and bark that they shed instead of changing leaves, - she-oak trees, with hard joints, like overgrown English horse-tails, - monstrous nettle-trees, like a bad dream of our English stinging-nettle, - all growing in such similar shapes and clusters, that it is a most difficult, nay, impossible, thing for a person once lost to recover his bearings; and, worse than all, the drought is terrible, so that thirst will cause a more painful death than even hunger. Stout men, sturdy explorers, have been known to lie down, famished, to die in this inhospitable forest; and what could be the fate of the poor little children?
The father and his neighbors in vain shouted “Cooee !” (the bush call), and sought the country day after day, until a week had passed; when he obtained the aid of some of the natives, who, despised as they are by the colonists, have a wonderful power of tracking the faintest trail in their forests. They soon made out signs where the children had been, from the bendings of the twigs or the tramplings of the grass.
“ Here little one tired," they said ; “sit down. Big one kneel down ; carry him along. Here travel all night; dark, that bush ; her fall on him.” Then came : “Here little one tired again; big one kneel down; no get up,
- fall flat on face.” The children had been lost on Friday afternoon.
On the Saturday week, the blacks led the father up to a clump of broom, where lay three little figures, the least in the middle, with his sister's frock over his own clothes. Duff went up to them, comforted, at least, that he could carry home the little corpses to their mother. But the eldest boy roused himself, sat up, and said, “Father !” then fell back from sheer weakness; and, indeed, his lips were so shrunk, that they could no longer cover his teeth. Little Frank awoke as if from a quiet sleep. “Father, why did ’nt you come before ? " he said; we were cooeeing for you.” Jane was scarcely alive ; when she was lifted up, she only made a murmur of “ Cold, - cold !” If neither had lived to tell the tale, little Frank's condition, so much better than that of his elders, would have told how free from selfishness their behavior must have been through all that dreadful week. When the elder brother was carried past the places that the blacks had pointed out, his account of their wanderings and adventures exactly agreed with what the natives had inferred. He said that this whole time they had been without food, and had only had one drink of water, perhaps from the “pitcher plant,” which is a native of those woods, and has a wonderfully-shaped cup, which retains water for many weeks. A man had been known to live eleven days in the bush upon nothing but water ; but the endurance of these little ones was even more wonderful.
They were all fast recovering ; and the feeling of admiration for little Jane was so strong in the colony, that a subscription was being raised for her, which soon amounted to several hundred pounds:
May it be well and wisely laid out on her behalf, • and may her further life be worthy of the Golden
Deed of her childhood !
A TABLE is here given to enable the reader to arrange the various events related according to time and place. Those in CAPITALS are those circumstantially narrated ; the others are those merely alluded to.
13 63 17
5 23 34 45
Thrace B.C. Antigone's Burial of her Brother Thebes 1068. Codrus's Devotion
Athens 1050. David's DRAUGHT OF WATER
Palestine 512. The Silence of Leæna
Rome 480. THE SPARTANS AT THERMOPYLÆ . Thessaly 389. COMINIUS AT THE ROCK
Rome 380. Damon's FRIENDSHIP .
The DevoTION OF DECIUS THE ELDER Italy . 326. ALEXANDER'S CUP OF WATER
The Devotion of Decius the Younger . Italy 249. The CONSTANCY OF REGULUS
Carthage 219. The Rescue of Scipio
Rome 60. The Sentinel at Pompeii
Italy 290. Beatrix Burying her Brother
Rome 306. NATALIA'S AFFECTION .
Bithynia 389. The REBUKE TO THEODOSIUS
The HERMIT IN THE COLISÆUM Egyptian
6 180 187
France 991. THE BATTLE OF THE BLACKWATER . Essex 1064. THE REBUKE TO SVEND
Denmark 1066. The Northman on Stamford Bridge England 1149. The Ladies of Weinsburg
Germany 1273 Rodolf's Draught of Water
Germany 1291. GUZMAN's FibeLITY
Tarifa 1308. GERTRUDE VON DE WART's FAITHFUL
Austria 1332. DIEUDONNÉ'S SUBMISSION.
SURRENDER OF THE BURGHERS OF
Switzerland 1401. The Succorer of Rothsay .
Scotland 1433 FERNANDO'S CONSTANCY
CATHARINE Douglas's DEFENCE . Scotland 1440. Helen KOTTENNER AND ST. STEPHEN'S CROWN
Hungary 1450. The Succorer of Gilles de Bretagne. Brittany 1455 GEORGE THE TRILLER'S RESCUE Saxony. 1491. The Spaniard at the Gates of Granada Spain 1535. Margaret Roper's Filial Love
England 1564. KOURBSKY'S LETTER-CARRIER
Russia 1565. DEFENCE OF Fort St. ELMO
Malta 1576. SIDNEY'S DRAUGHT OF WATER Holland. 1578. BORROMEO IN THE PLAGUE OF MILAN . Milan 1622. VINCENT DE PAUL AS A Convict . France 1641. THE HOUSEWIVES OF LÖWENBURG . Germany 1643. The Spanish Infantry's Fall at Rocroy Flanders 1648. THE LINDSAYS AT EDGEHILL
England 1652. The Flask at Flensborg .
Holstein 1666. THE PLAGUE-STRICKEN EYAM. England 1672. The Soldiers' Cloaks covering Turenne Germany 1700,c. LADY EDGEWORTH'S PRESENCE MIND
Ireland 1720, c. HELEN WALKER's Petition
England 1721. Bishop BELZUNCE IN THE PLAGUE OF MARSEILLES
3 217 233 241