spoken. As for the furrier, he could never have enough of my society; and this worthy man, praying my commendation, demanded of me one thing only—to speak of him as I found him. As I had found him many a Sunday, furbishing up old furs for new, with a glaze to conceal the moths’ ravages, I begged him to reconsider the point, and not to demand such accuracy. He said, ‘Well, well; all trades had tricks, especially the trick of business; and I must take him—if I were his true friend—according to his own description.’ This I was glad enough to do; because it saved so much trouble, and I had no money to spend with him. But still he requested the use of my name; and I begged him to do the best with it, as I never had kept a banker. And the ‘John Ridd cuffs,’ and the ‘Sir John mantles,’ and the ‘Holly-staff capes,’ he put into his window, as the winter was coming on, ay and sold (for everybody was burning with gossip about me), must have made this good man’s fortune; since the excess of price over value is the true test of success in life.

To come away from all this stuff, which grieves a man in London—when the brisk air of the autumn cleared its way to Ludgate Hill, and clever ‘prentices ran out, and sniffed at it, and fed upon it (having little else to eat); and when the horses from the country were a goodly sight to see, with the rasp of winter bristles rising through and among the soft summer-coat; and when the new straw began to come in, golden with the harvest gloss, and smelling most divinely at those strange livery-stables, where the nags are put quite tail to tail; and when all the London folk themselves are asking about white frost (from recollections of childhood); then, I say, such a yearning seized me for moory crag, and for dewy blade, and even the grunting of our sheep (when the sun goes down), that nothing but the new wisps of Samson could have held me in London town.

Lorna was moved with equal longing towards the country and country ways; and she spoke quite as much of the glistening dew as she did of the smell of our oven. And here let me mention—although the two are quite distinct and different—that both the dew and the bread of Exmoor may be sought, whether high or low, but never found elsewhere. The dew is so crisp, and pure, and pearly, and in such abundance; and the bread is so sweet, so kind, and homely, you can eat a loaf, and then another.

Now while I was walking daily in and out great crowds of men (few of whom had any freedom from the cares of money, and many of whom were even morbid with a worse pest called ‘politics’), I could not be quit of thinking how we jostle one another. God has made the earth quite large, with a spread of land large enough for all to live on, without fighting. Also a mighty spread of water, laying hands on sand and cliff with a solemn voice in storm-time; and in the gentle weather moving men to thoughts of equity. This, as well, is full of food; being two-thirds of the world, and reserved for devouring knowledge; by the time the sons of men have fed away the dry land. Yet before the land itself has acknowledged touch of man, upon one in a hundred acres; and before one mile in ten thousand of the exhaustless ocean has ever felt the plunge of hook, or combing of the haul-nets; lo, we crawl, in flocks together upon the hot ground that stings us, even as the black grubs crowd upon the harried nettle! Surely we are too much given to follow the tracks of each other.

However, for a moralist, I never set up, and never shall, while common sense abides with me. Such a man must be very wretched in this pure dearth of morality; like a fisherman where no fish be; and most of us have enough to do to attend to our own morals. Enough that I resolved to go; and as Lorna could not come with me, it was even worse than stopping. Nearly everybody vowed that I was a great fool indeed, to neglect so rudely—which was the proper word, they said—the pushing of my fortunes. But I answered that to push was rude, and I left it to people who had no room; and thought that my fortune must be heavy, if it would not move without pushing.

Lorna cried when I came away (which gave me great satisfaction), and she sent a whole trunkful of things for mother and Annie, and even Lizzie. And she seemed to think, though she said it not, that I made my own occasion for going, and might have stayed on till the winter. Whereas I knew well that my mother would think (and every one on the farm the same) that here I had been in London, lagging, and taking my pleasure, and looking at shops, upon pretence of King’s business, and leaving the harvest to reap itself, not to mention the spending of money; while all the time there was nothing whatever, except

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