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above knowledge. Whenever her theme is artless goodness, we forget all about actors and acting. We feel the influence of the true and faithful girl gliding into our hearts, and delight in the consciousness that we have before us a high-minded and noble woman - there on those boards of the Opera house one who by unrelenting labor and perseverance has won by her sole virtuous power those deafening plaudits, but who receives them as one taught by adversity and disappointment, to discriminate between shadow and substance, between loud noise and gentle, but deep appreciation. It is to this triumph of an earnest purpose over vanity in all its shades, to that truly feminine dignity which leaves but her curtsey to the crowd and the flatterer, but her smile to the just and sincere friend, that I offer this tribute of admiration. As for her heart—ah ! there I must stop—bold indeed must be held the woman who ventures on a prediction concerning a woman's heart. Jenny Lind's strength may fail her there; and we can but unite our hopes that be it Swedish or English, the heart that shall make its way to her’s, will be one above disguise-bringing to her home the realization of the poet's feeling that
“Nae treasures, nor pleasures,
Can mak’us happy lang ;
That mak's us right or wrang :" although her ear should remain a stranger to his idiom; and we, my fair friends, to whom it is familiar, cannot do better than keep in mind the precept it holds out, at the close of our evening's amusement.
THE VOICE OF A FRIEND.
There's no music on earth like the voice of a friend,
I know the bland tones too, they use in the world,
THE HISTORY OF A HEART.
“Let Mary be her name
It hath a sweet and gentle sound
Come crowding round.
The first grief of our young heroine happened on the very day after attaining her sixteenth year, when she unfortunately discovered that she had lost her heart !
“I think it must have been last night when we were dancing on the lawn," said Mary Vernon to her mother, while the tears glistened on her dark eyelashes; “but I never missed it until this morning. Poor cousin Tom will be so vexed !”
“ It cannot be helped,” said Mrs. Vernon, as she went quietly on with her knitting.
“I would sooner have lost anything else,” continued Mary. “ To be sure you would,” replied her mother, with a smile.
All day long, Mary went searching about the house and garden, and enquiring of every one she met, whether they had found her heart? Not a real heart of course, or she would not have said anything of it, but pined away and died, as thousands as young and beautiful as herself have done before now of shame and disappointment; while their secret went down with them into the grave! Mary Vernon's was only a little cornelian heart which her cousin Tom had given her when he went to India, and she had worn ever since fastened by a black ribbon around her slender throat, and which had slipped away on her birthnight and gone no one knew where. Mary strongly accused a certain Lawrence Stainforth—an old friend and play
fellow, who she remembered now having made a snatch at a rose which she wore in her bosom, and which she had refused to give him, declaring that he never could behave quietly like other people, and that it was all his fault the heart was missing! That night, when Mr. Vernon enquired what ailed his little Mary, her mother told him with a smile, that she had lost her heart !
“ Poor child !" said the old man, kissing her fondly, “ that is a sad thing!"
The following day Lawrence Stainforth sent Mary a little golden heart with a bright stone in the centre, to make amends for the mischief of which he had been the innocent cause ; but the wilful girl filung it carelessly aside without even looking at it. She wanted to return it at once, but her mother would not permit her.
Why it is real gold,” said she, “and worth a dozen cornelian !" But Mary still wept for her lost heart.
“ Poor cousin Tom !” thought she, when he begged me so earnestly to keep it for his sake, and to let him see it on my neck when he came back, that he might know I was unchanged. But to be sure, as mamma says, I could not help losing it, and I will tell him all about it when he returns-or it may
be found before then.” Weeks passed away and the little cornelian heart was almost forgotten ; until one day when Mary opened her trinket drawer, and saw its golden substitute looking so bright and beautiful that she could not resist taking it out and fastening it to the ribbon, just to see the effect. We all know the effect of a glittering jewel on a white neck, and need not wonder very much at its being suffered to remain.
“ So Mary has found her heart at last,” said her old father.
“ No,” replied Mrs. Vernon, with a quiet smile, “she has only got another instead.” Mary blushed without knowing why.
It was nearly two years and a half before cousin Tom-or rather, Mr. Thomas Harrington-for such was his namecame back from India. The first thing his glance rested on was the glittering jewel upon Mary's neck; but the girl herself had forgotten all about it at the moment, and thought only of the joy of seeing him again. When she afterwards remembered it, she determined to tell him all the first opportunitybut somehow that opportunity never came.
Even his very greeting was cold and distant. Poor Mary! wept when alone
because he had not kissed her as he did when he went away; and wished herself a child again, if it was to make all this difference. Only to think of his calling me Miss Vernon, instead of Mary, or « his dear Mary' as he used ! One may easily see that I am not his dear Mary now! I dare say he has forgotten all about the little cornelian heart—and all he said on that night — well, perhaps it is best so!” And Mary cried herself to sleep.
The following morning, Lawrence Stainforth, who was always finding or inventing some excuse to visit the house, came over to see his old school-fellow; and his frank and cheerful manner made him appear to great advantage when contrasted with the gloomy taciturnity of Mr. Harrington.
“ How I wish that cousin Tom was more like Lawrence Stainforth,” said Mary, with a sigh.
Her mother knitted on and smiled.
“ I cannot tell what has come over me of late," mused Mary Vernon, still following out the train of her own thoughts, “but when cousin Tom is by I feel positively awkward, and am always making some ridiculous blunder, and saying or doing what I ought not; although I believe it makes but little difference, and that he is no more conscious of my presence than if I Were a piece of furniture. I wish he would speak to me sometimes—but then, what does it signify? in a few weeks he will have gone back to India, and I shalí never see him again! It was only yesterday that he told papa he hated England ! Poor cousin Tom! how changed he is—and how handsome he has grown !"
That evening, as Mary sat at work, she suddenly lifted up her eyes and met those of Mr. Harrington, fixed intently upon the little golden heart which had been the innocent cause of their estrangement from one another.
“ Is that the one you used to wear ?” asked he in a careless voice.
“ It is but too plain,” thought Mary, “ that he has forgotten all about it.” And the poor girl could scarcely refrain from tears. It has been said that in moments of violent struggle there are always good and bad angels at hand, and the happiness of a life time depends, not unfrequently, upon which of these invisible counsellors we give ear to. A tear would have broken the spell, but Mary smiled, and answered lightly. " Oh no, Lawrence Stainforth, gave me this.
Is it not
“ Very,” replied her companion; and he took up a book and began to read.
How much of human suffering might be prevented if we would only act truthfully one with another. If instead of assuming that cold indifferent air, Mr. Harrington had but spoken as he felt, and said with simple earnestness-“ Mary, dear, what has become of the little cornelian heart which I gave you when I went away, and you promised to wear for my sake?” Then she would have told him about her losing it, and how sorry she was, and how she had even shed tears over it. And that although the one which she now wore was very bright and glittering, she did not prize it half so much as she had done that simple piece of cornelian— because it was his gift! Had he even been angry, and declared that he did not like to see her wearing the presents of another; she would have laughed and teazed him a little; and then taken it off and Aung it back into her trinket drawer, without another thought. Faith and truth, are the good spirits of every day life! Pride, is its destroying angel !
Mr. 'Harrington went back to India, a gloomy and disappointed man; anticipating the news which shortly followed him, of Mary's engagement to Lawrence Stainforth. She had wondered what cousin Tom would say when he heard of it—“ God bless, and make her happy !” was all that he uttered; and then the proud man bowed down bis head and wept like a child.
Mr. Stainforth was very rich, and every one said that Mary was a fortunate girl ; while her mother rejoiced over the accomplishment of the first wish of her heart.
“I was half afraid at one time," said she to her husband, " that there had been some foolish engagement between Mary and her cousin."
“ And why foolish, my dear?”
“ Because—because his temper is so unequal—and then he is not nearly as well off as Mr. Stainforth.”
“ The first reason is all sufficient,” said Mr. Vernon, gravely, “ To be sure Tom is changed; and Mary must have noticed it as well as ourselves. But then who can tell but what it may have been caused by some secret grief or anxiety, for it is these things which make people proud and irritable, so that we blame oftentimes when we should soothe and pity.”
Never was there a more generous or attentive lover than Lawrence Stainforth. Mary had but to wish for a thing and it was hers immediately, if trouble or money could procure it. And then he was so good-humoured, and so kind, and merry