Next our peaceful Tupman comes, So rosy, plump, and sweet, Who chokes with laughter at the puns,
And tumbles off his seat.
Prim little Winkle too is here, With every hair in place, A model of propriety, Though he hates to wash
The year is gone, we still unite To joke and laugh and read, And tread the path of literature That doth to
Long may our paper prosper well, Our club unbroken be, And coming years their blessings pour On the
useful gay "P.C."
THE MASKED MARRIAGE.
A TALE OF VENICE
Gondola after gondola swept up to the marble steps, and left its lovely load to swell the brilliant throng
that filled the stately halls of Count de Adelon. Knights and ladies, elves and pages, monks and flower-
girls, all mingled gaily in the dance. Sweet voices and rich melody filled the air; and so with mirth and
music the masquerade went on.
`Has your Highness seen the Lady Viola tonight?' asked a gallant troubadour of the fairy queen who
floated down the hall upon his arm.
`Yes; is she not lovely, though so sad? Her dress is well chosen, too, for in a week she weds Count Antonio,
whom she passionately hates.'
`By my faith, I envy him. Yonder he comes arrayed like a bridegroom, except the black mask. When
that is off we shall see how he regards the fair maid whose heart he cannot win, though her stern father
bestows her hand,' returned the troubadour.
`'Tis whispered that she loves the young English artist who haunts her steps, and is spurned by the old
count,' said the lady, as they joined the dance.
The revel was at its height when a priest appeared, and, withdrawing the young pair to an alcove hung
with purple velvet, he motioned them to kneel. Instant silence fell upon the gay throng; and not a sound,
but the dash of fountains or the rustle of orange-groves sleeping in the moonlight, broke the hush, as
Count de Adelon spoke thus--
`My lords and ladies, pardon the ruse by which I have gathered you here to witness the marriage of my
daughter. Father we wait your services.'
All eyes turned toward the bridal party, and a low murmur of amazement went through the throng, for
neither bride nor groom removed their masks. Curiosity and wonder possessed all hearts, but respect
restrained all tongues till the holy rite was over. Then the eager spectators gathered round the count,
demanding an explanation.
`Gladly would I give it if I could; but I only know that it was the whim of my timid Viola, and I yielded to it.
Now, my children, let the play end. Unmask, and receive my blessing.'
But neither bent the knee; for the young bridegroom replied, in a tone that startled all listeners, as the
mask fell, disclosing the noble face of Ferdinand Devereux, the artist lover; and, leaning on the breast
where now flashed the star of an English earl, was the lovely Viola, radiant with joy and beauty.