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these weary stand-still hours; you have just settled all the preliminaries in time, for here comes St. Roy from his voyage of discovery, with, I really believe, an old guitar. Wait one moment, dear Mùsica, before you begin to sing - one moment, I must go and persuade our good hostess to find me some scraps wherewith to begin this important portfolio, and then we shall be so happy!"-In less than five minutes Violet returned with materials for her work. Odd enough they were, it must be confessed. An old wig-box for the lids, very stiff and hard, but Harry undertook to cut them to the proper size. A piece of flowered damask, very splendid for the outer covering (certainly a bit of an old petticoat), writing paper would do for the interior, and paste could be had at a moment's notice; so Violet set to work, and Música, our pretty Hydriote, seated herself on an ottoman at her husband's feet, and prepared to sing. "I will give you," she said, "the evening hymn, which in our island we sing to the Virgin, when those we love are absent."

The vesper time draws nigh,

The pale moon trembles in the horizon fair,
And stars are speaking in the quiet sky,

It is the hour of prayer.

Bend, bend the heart and knee,

For day's long toil and trouble now are past;
Whom should we seek at this still hour but Thee,
Father! at last.

It may be in the day

Our hearts, too busy and too worldly grown,
Sometimes forget thy love ;-mistrust thy sway,
This hour is all thine own.

And if some falling tears

When pleading for the loved one far away,

And cherished in our heart's deep core for years,
Should force their way;

Thou wilt forgive, for Thou

Wert one of us, and earthly grief didst share ;
Pardon our sorrow, and accept our vow,
Now, at the time of prayer.

May holy angels keep

Watch through the dark night, while we lie at rest,
Send peaceful dreamings to our quiet sleep,

Of them, the lost, the blest.

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Should this night be our last

Of earthly watching, and of earthly care,
Then may we wake in heaven, all sorrow past,
And praise Thee there.

Various causes delayed us on our route, so that we did not reach Rouvray so early as we had expected. In short, Monday morning came, and found us driving through the forest, the beautiful forest of Fontainebleau, and gazing with eyes which drink in all charms of woodland scenery, as eagerly as the thirsty traveller drinks at noon-day the cool fountain waters, on its masses of pale grey rock, seen dimly and indistinctly like the forms in cloudland through the foliage - on its trees of unnumbered dyes, and on its soft green lanes, diverging to the right and to the left, sometimes terminated by a holy cross, sometimes endless, like

the visions of happiness that haunt our waking dreams. Noon found us at the village itself: we passed through the door-way of the lowly inn, of which the roof was lined with swallows' nests, and were soon busily engaged with breakfast. A glorious morning we passed, wandering up and down the splendid galleries, looking till even our eager eyes were sated, on picture and statue, and dreaming all the while of Joan the brave and gentle champion of her country; of Anne of Poictiers kneeling in her beauty and her sorrow to the princely Francis for the boon dearest to a daughter's heart, her father's pardon; and of that personification of all truth, honour and honesty, the Chevalier Bayard. The painter had chosen that moment for his picture, so touchingly described by an old chronicler : "His mother, poor lady, was in a tower of the castle, weeping bitterly, but when she heard that her young son was on his horse impatient to be gone, she descended and commanded him, as much as a mother could command, three things-To love God above all things, to be courteous to all men, and charitable to the poor." Then came tales of gentler import: the fair but erring Gabriëlle; and fairer to woman's eye, because truer to right womanly feeling, Blonde of Russia, wailing over the body of her dead husband. Grieving, yet grieving without despair, for there is an expression in the calm eye and placid lip, which shows that hope and faith are busy in the mourner's heart, whispering of re-union in heaven.

We remained longer in the gallery of Francis the First than in any other, not only because it was the favourite resort of him whom all ladies love, but on

account of other interesting associations. It was here Leonardo da Vinci died in the arms of his master-Leonardo, of whom Vasari said, "Con le parole sue volgeva al si e al no ogn' indurate intenzione.” We thought too, of a later period in the life of the same monarch, when this very gallery witnessed a rare assemblage of great and talented individuals. It was here that Benvenuto Cellini fixed his celebrated statue of Jupiter, the admiration of all the court, in spite of the efforts made by Madame d'Estampes to throw it aside. She delayed the king's arrival until night, that it might be seen to disadvantage, but Cellini placed a white torch among the flames, encircling the globe held in the left hand, which being raised somewhat above the head, when lighted, gave additional effect to the statue. She had caused a number of bronze statues, imitations of the finest antiques of Rome, to be placed in the gallery by Primaticcio, Cellini's rival and enemy; so that they might eclipse his modern production; but his majesty declared Benvenuto's Jupiter to be superior

to them all.

It must have been an interesting group that animated the old gallery; and pity there was no painter there to sketch it! Benvenuto on one side of his noble statue, silently devouring his rage at hearing it cried down from sheer malice and envy. Madame d'Estampes on the other, muttering her indignation to herself, at finding the influences of even her beauty counteracted by the talent of the bold Italian,-the bystanders scarcely certain with whom they should take part. The Dauphin and Dauphiness, Catherine de Medici, then fair and young, and untouched as yet

by the wild dreams of ambition, enjoying with all the glee of girlhood the suppressed anger of the favourite and the perplexity of the artist. We may well fancy that she would enjoy such a scene, when we recollect her, not as the scourge of France, but as the mischievous girl, who so mixed the colours with which Vasari had been working at her portrait, that it looked like thirty devils all alive. In strong contrast to her youthful figure, stood Cardinal Lorraine, the king of Navarre, and the princely Margaret, his wife; Margaret of Valois, the beloved sister of Francis, no longer beautiful, but interesting for her talents, her noble spirit, and her devoted affection for her brother.

On our return to the inn, we learned that it would not be possible to procure horses for some hours. What should we do? The hostelry was noisy, and mine host, a chevalier of the Legion d'Honneur and St. Louis, much too grand a gentleman to command order. What could we do better than return to the palace and obtain permission to spend the long afternoon within its delightful precincts. It was in the queen's boudoir that we chose to domesticate ourselves. A right pleasant apartment. Small as a boudoir, and lofty as all rooms should be; unadorned but by the still beauty of the scene on which the high and ample window looked, a bower, thick and impervious, hedging in a small velvet lawn. The rich mellow light of an October sun streamed through the trees, adding the variety of light and shade to the variety of colour, and almost arousing to motion a Parian statue of Diana, dimly seen through the flickering foliage, while all the time, the diamond

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