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asked permission to take some cakes to while, and the child thought only of the a poor blind man, who lived on the other success of his device ; but the night side of the dyke. His father gave him was closing in, and with the night came leave; but charged him not to stay too the cold. The little boy looked around late. The child promised, and set off on in vain. No one came. He shouted his little journey. The blind man he called loudly-no one answered. He thankfully partook of his young friend's resolved to stay there all night ; but cakes ; and the boy, mindful of his alas! the cold was becoming every mofather's order, did not wait as usual to ment more biting, and the poor finger hear one of the old man's stories, but as fixed in the hole began to feel benumbed, soon as he had seen him eat one muffin, and the numbness 30on extended to the he took leave of him to return home. hand, and thence throughout the whole

As he went along by the canals, then arm. The pain became still greater, quite full (for it was in October, and the still harder to bear; but still the boy autumn rains had swelled the waters), the moved not. Tears rolled down his boy now stopped to pull the little blue cheeks as he thought of his father, of his flowers which his mother loved so well, mother, of his little bed where he might and now, in childish gaiety, hummed now be sleeping so soundly; but still some merry song. The road gradually the little fellow stirred not, for he knew became more solitary, and soon neither that did he remove the small slender the joyous shout of the villager return finger which he had opposed to the esing to his cottage home, nor the rough cape of the water, not only would he voice of the carter grumbling at his lazy himself be drowned, but his father, his horses, was any longer to be heard. The little brothers, his neighbours-nay, the little fellow now perceived that the blue whole village. We know not what falof the flowers in his hand was scarcely tering of purpose, what momentary faildistinguishable from the green of the ures of courage there might have been surrounding herbage, and he looked up during that long and terrible night; but in some dismay. The night was falling; certain it is, that at daybreak he was not, however, a dark, winter night, but found in the same painful position by a one of those beautiful, clear moonlight clergyman returning from attendance on nights in which every object is percep-a death-bed, who, as he advanced, tible, though not as distinctly as by day. thought he heard groans; and, bending The child thought of his father, of his over the dyke, discovered a child seated injunction, and was preparing to quit the on a stone writhing from pain, and with ravine in which he was almost buried, to pale face and tearful eyes. regain the beach, when suddenly a slight “In the name of wonder, boy," he exnoise, like the trickling of water upon claimed, “ what are you doing there ?”' pebbles, attracted his attention. He was “I am hindering the water from runnear one of the large sluices, and he now ning out,” was the answer, in perfect carefully examines it, and soon disco- simplicity, of the child, who during that vers a hole in the wood, through which whole night had been evincing such the water was flowing. With the instant heroic fortitude and undaunted courage. perception which every child in Holland The Muse of History, too often blind would have, the boy saw that the water to true glory, has handed down to posmust soon enlarge the hole through terity many a warrior, the destroyer of which it was now only dropping, and thousands of his fellow-men, but she has that utter and general ruin would be the left us in ignorance of the name of this consequence of the inundation of the real little Hero of Haarlem. country that must follow.

To see, to throw away the flowers, to elimb from GOVERNMENT is the creature of the stone to stone, till he reached the hole, people, and that which they have created and to put his finger into it, was the they surely have a right to examine. In work of a moment; and then to his de- spite of the attempts of sophistry to conlight he finds that he has succeeded in ceal the origin of political right, it must stopping the flow of water.

inevitably rest on the acquiescence of the This was all very well for a little people. Robert Hallo

THE COSTERMONGERS OF LONDON.

29

THE POLITICS, SOCIAL CONDITION, AND RELIGION OF THE

COSTERMONGERS OF LONDON.

"row"

in us.

" that

The polities of these people are detailed tist leaders exhorted them to peace and in a few words—they are nearly all Char- quietness, when they might as well fight tists. You might say, sir,” remarked it out with the police at once. The one of my informants, “that they all costers boast, moreover, that they stick were Chartists, but as it is better you more together in any

than

any should rather be under than over the other class. It is considered by them a mark, say nearly all. Their ignorance, reflection on the character of the thieves and their being impulsive, makes them a that they are seldom true to one another. dangerous class. I am assured, that in It is a matter of marvel to many of every district where costermongers are this class that people can live without congregated, one or two of the body, working. The ignorant costers have no more intelligent than the others, have knowledge of “property” or “income,” great influence over them; and these and conclude that the non-workers all leading men are all Chartists, and being live out of the taxes.

Of the taxes gene. industrious and not unprosperous per- rally they judge from their knowledge sons, their pecuniary and intellectual su- that tobacco, which they account a necesperiority causes them to be regarded as sary of life, pays 3s. per lb. duty. oracles. One of these men said to me, As regards the police, the hatred of a “ The costers think that working men costermonger to a peeler" is intense, know best, and so they have confidence and with their opinion of the police, all

I like to make men discontented, the more ignorant unite that of the goand I will make them discontented while verning power. Can

you

wonder at it, the present system continues, because sir,” said a costermonger to me, it's all for the middle and the moneyed I hate the police? They drive us about, classes, and nothing, in the way of rights, we must move on, we can't stand here, for the poor. People fancy, when all's and we can't pitch there. But if we're quiet, that all's stagnating. Propa- cracked up ; that is, if we're forced to go gandism is going on for all that. It's into the Union, (I've known it both at when all's quiet that the seed's a-growing. Clerkenwell and the City of London workRepublicans and Socialists are pressing houses,) why the parish gives us money their doctrines."

to buy a barrow, or a shallow, or to hire The costermongers have very vague no. them, and leave the house, and start for tions of an aristocracy; they call the more ourselves; and what's the use of that, if prosperous of their own body“ aristo- the police won't let us sell our goods ?crats.' Their notions of an aristocracy Which is right, the parish or the police ?” of birth or wealth seem to be formed on To thwart the police in any measure, their opinion of the rich, or 'reputed rich the costermongers readily aid one another. salesmen with whom they deal, and the One very common procedure, if the policeresult is anything but favourable to the man has seized a barrow, is to whip off nobility.

a wheel, while the officers have gone for Concerning Free-trade, nothing, I am assistance; for a large and loaded barrow told, can check the costermonger's fer- requires two men to couvey it to the vour for a cheap loaf. A Chartist coster- green-yard. This is done with great dexmonger told me that he knew numbers terity; and the next step is to dispose of of costers who were keen Chartists, with- the stock to any passing costers, or to out understanding anything about the six any standing” in the neighbourhood, points.

and it is honestly accounted for. The The costermongers frequently attend policemen, on their return, find an empty political meetings, going there in bodies and unwheelable barrow, which they must of from six to twelve. Some of them, I carry off by main strength, amid the jeers learned, could not understand why Char- of the populace.)

I am assured, that in case of a poli. it, and hardest beaten if the man's drunk tical riot every “coster” would seize lis himself. They're sometimes beaten for policeman.

other things too, or for nothing at all.

But they seem to like the men better for MARRIAGE AND CONCUBINAGE OF

their beating them. I never could make COSTERMONGERS.

that out." Notwithstan 'ing this fidelity, Only one-tenth-at the outside one- it appears that the “ larking a.d joking." tenth of the couples living together, and of the young, and sometimes of the carrying on the costermongering trade, middle-aged people a..ong themselves, is are married. In Clerkenwell parish, how

anything but delicate. Tie unmarried ever, where the number of married couples separate as seldom as the married. The is about a fifth of the whole, this differ- fidelity characterizing the women does not ence is easily accounted for, as in Advent belong to the men. and Easter, the incumbent of that parish

The dancing-rooms are the places where marries poor couples without a fee. Of matches are made up. There the boys the rights of “legitimate" or illegiti.

go to look out for “mates," and some. mate” children the costermongers under- time a match is struck up the first night stand nothing, and account it a mere of meeting, and the couple live together waste of money and time to go through forthwith The girls at these dances are the ceremony of wedlock when a pair can all the daughters of costermorgers, or of live together, and be quite as well re- persons pursuing some other course of garded by their fellows without it. The

street life. Unions take place when the married women associate with the un- lad is but fourteen. Two or three out of married mothers of families without the 100 have their female hełpmates at that slightest scruple. There is no honour early age; but the female is generally a attached to the marriage state, and no couple of years older than her partner. shame to concubinage. Neither are the Nearly all the costermongers form such unmarried women less faithful to their alliances as I have described, when both " partners” than the married; but I un- parties are under twenty. One reason derstand that, of the two classes, the why these alliar.ces are contracted at unmarried betray the most jealousy.

early ages is, that when a boy has assisted As regards the fidelity of these women his father, or any one engaging hin, in I was assured that, “ in anything like the business of a costermonger, he knows good times,"

they were rigidly faithful that he can borrow mozey, and hire a to their husbands or paramours; but shallow or a barrow-or be may have that, in the worst pinch of poverty, a de- saved 58.," and then if the father vexes parture from this fidelity—if it provided him, or snubs him," said one of my in. a few meals or a fire—was not considered formants, “he'll tell his father to go to at all heinous. An old costermonger, h--l, and he and his gal will start on who had been mixed up with other call- their own account." ings, and whose prejudices were certainly Most of the costermongers have nunot in favour of his present trade, said merous families, but not those who conto me, “What I call the working girls, tract alliances very young. The women sir, are as industrious and as faithful a continue working down to the day of their set as can well be. I'm satisfied that

confinement. they're more faithful to their mates than

“Chance children,” as they are called, other poor working women.

I never

or children unrecognised by any father, knew one of these working girls do wrong are rare among young women of the costhat way. They're strong, hearty, healthy termongers. girls, and keep clean rooms. Why, there's numbers of men leave their stock - "RELIGION OF COSTERMONGERS. money with their women, just taking out An intelligent and trustworthy man, two or three shiliings to gamble with, until very recently actively engaged in and get drunk upon. They sometimes costermongering, computed that not three take a little drop themselves, the women in 100 costermongers had ever been in do, and get beaten by their husbands for the interior of a church, or any place of

MAN'S LOVE.

31 worship, or knew what was meant by of church and chapel, and as they're Christianity. The same person gave me mostly well-dressed, and there's very few the following account, whieh was con- of their own sort among the church. firmed by others :

goers, the costers somehow mix up being "The costers have no religion at all, religious with being respectable, and so and very little notion, or none at all, of they have a queer sort of feeling about it. what religion or a future state is. Of Its a mystery to them. It's shocking all things they hate tracts. They hate when you come to think of it. They'll them, because the people leaving them listen to any preacher that goes among never give them anything; and as they them; and then a few will say,- I've can't read the tract-not one in forty- heard it often,—“A b-y fool, why don't they're vexed to be bothered with it. And he let people go to h—11 their own way?" really what is the use of giving people There's another thing that makes the cosreading before you've taught them to ters think so well of the Catholics. If a read ? Now, they respect the City Mis- Catholic coster—there's only very few .sionaries because they read to them- of them-is cracked up,' (penniless,) and the costers will listen to reading he's often started again, and the others when they don't understand it—and be- have a notion that it's through some cause they visit the sick, and sometimes chapel-fund. I don't know whether it is give oranges and such like to them and so or not, but I know the cracked-up the children. I've known a City Mis- men are started again, if they're Cathosionary buy a shilling's worth of oranges lics. It's still the stranger that the reguof a coster, and give them away to the lar costermongers, who are nearly all sick and the children-most of them be. Londoners, should have such respect for longing to the costermongers--down the the Roman Catholics, when they have such court, and that made him respected there. a hatred for the Irish, whom they look I think the City Misssionaries have done upon as intruders and underminers.” “If good. But I'm satisfied, that if the cos- a missionary came among us with plenty ters had to profess themselves of some of money,” said another costermonger, religion to-morrow, they would all be- “he might make us all Christians or come Roman Catholics, every one of Turks, or anything he liked.” Neither them. This is the reason :- - London the Latter-day Saints, nor any similar costers live very often in the same courts sect, have made converts among the cosand streets as the poor Irish ; and if the termongers.--From London Labour and Irish are sick, be sure there comes to the London Poor." them the priest, the Sisters of Charitythey are good women--and some other

MAN'S LOVE. ladies. Many a man who is not a To worship for a season,', Catholic has rotted and died without

To flatter, feign, pursue;

To love with little reason,any good person near him. Why, I lived

To leave as blindly too: a good while in Lambeth, and there

Or, having won and worn, wasn't one coster in a hundred, I'm satis

To fling the rose away, — fied, knew so much as the rector's name, Or, having crush'd, to scorn though Mr. Dalton's a very good man.

Its premature decay: But the reason I was telling you of, sir,

To stab with sharp unkindness,

With cold neglect to kill, is, that the costers reckon that religion's

To abuse with selfish blindness, the best that gives the most in charity, The love no wrongs can chill : and they think Catholics do this. I'm To fly the hour of dangernot a Catholic myself, but I believe every

The bed where sickness lies, word of the Bible, and have the greater

And leave, perhaps, a stranger

To close the dying eyes: belief that it's the word of God, because it teaches democracy. The Irish in the

And, ere her last cold pillow

The green grass waves above, courts get sadly chaffed by the others To cast away the willow, about their priests; but they'll die for

And choose another love: the priest. Religion is a regular puzzle

Thus-thus-'tis thus men love! to the costers. They see people come out

J. M. WE ERRY.

THE BIRTH-DAY GIFT. How provoking—just as I am en- -she stumbling over the prancing dog gaged ;-Morton, ah, I seem to remem- the vase fell from her hands-in one ber the name ;-it must be Annie's mo- moment the costly piece of art was a ther-well-another time,” And with beautiful, but worthless wreck. these words, the volatile Clara flung aside Poor Clara! it was a severe disappointthe unwelcome letter.

ment;

and it required all Mrs. Langley's Alas! how frequently are the prompt- consolatory powers to restore her equaings of our better nature postponed to nimity. This difficult task accomplished, " a more convenient season."

Fido was forgiven, and the scattered fragAny feeling which might have been ments gathered from the floor. aroused by the appeal thus carelessly “ At all events," said her mother, who cast away was speedily overpowered, as, could scarcely suppress a smile at the accompanied by a fashionably drest fe- woe-begone expression of Clara's face, male friend, she hastened to Mrs. Rom- “there are plenty of wax-flowers and ney's splendid show-rooms, and was soon vases in London, and next week we will completely engrossed in selecting a group proceed to Mrs. Romney's to replace it, of artificial wax flowers. One, unique in and thus avert all remembrance of this its elegant workmanship and artistic ar- dreadful catastrophe. rangement, particularly struck her fancy; Many trivial circumstances delayed “ the production,” observed Mrs. Rom- the prosecution of this plan, and it was ney, of a new and pre-eminently taste- not until several weeks had elapsed, that ful artiste.” This purchased, and a vase, Mrs. Langley and her daughter entered shade, and all other requisites procured, Mrs. Romney's fascinating rooms. she returned home in ecstacies (despite “Dear me! how extremely distressthe lightness of her purse) with her ac- ing,” exclaimed that last-mentioned perquisitions.

sonage, “the young artiste who furnished The appeal, so summarily dismissed in those elegant groups has been unable to the morning, must now necessarily be pursue her occupation-ill health I bedeferred until her purse was replenished, lieve, and—a sad case—the only support and with this excuse Clara readily si- of a widowed mother.” lenced any qualıns of conscience. “I “ Poor girl!” exclaimed Mrs. Langinight certainly talk it over with mamma," ley, her feelings aroused by the similarity she once argued with herself, “but—" of her own widowed state, “Poor girl! and here visions of numerous late extra- and have they no friends ?" vagances rose before her-extravagances “ They are from the country, and have which had incurred the disapprobation seen better days, but have no connexions of her watchful, though indulgent parent; here ; should you desire to know more and the remembrance of this, now pre- about them, here is their address.” vented her seeking her mother's assis- “What is her name, mama," enquired tance.

Clara, as they quitted the shop. “Dear Clara, how very, very elegant,” “Morton-Annie Morton,” said Mrs. exclaimed Mrs. Langley, about a week Langley, reading from the slip of paper after, “ nothing could be more gracefully in her hand. arranged; but I fear, my love, this ex- Clara felt the burning colour mount to pensive birth-day gift must have sadly her face. crippled your finances ; and you know, After a short pause, she observed, dearest, that from you the simplest present “Don't you think we might postpone would be more valuable than the costliest the visit till to-morrow? It is getting gem from another hand.”

Clara playfully kissed her mother's “And they starve meanwhile .no, cheek, and then gaily proceeded to exhi- Clara." The determined manner in which bit its beauties under various aspects. these words were uttered precluded any Fido, partaking of his young mistress's further remonstrance. hilarity, sprang to assist in the operation Arrived at the designated abode, they

very late."

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