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Still, on a nobler strife than tilt or tourney,
Rides forth the errant knight, with brow elate;
Still patient pilgrims take, in hope, their journey;
Still meek and cloistered spirits ' stand and wait.'

Still hath the living, moving, world around us,
Its legends, fair with honour, bright with truth;
Still, as in tales that in our childhood bound us,
Love holds the fond traditions of its youth.

We need not linger o'er the fading traces
Of lost divinities; or seek to hold
Their serious converse 'mid Earth's green wasteplaces,
Or by her lonely fountains, as of old:

For, far remote from Nature's fair creations,
Within the busy mart, the crowded street,
With sudden, sweet, unlooked-for revelations
Of a bright presence we may chance to meet;

E'en now, beside a restless tide's commotion,
I stand and hear, in broken music swell,
Above the ebb and flow of Life's great ocean,
An under-song of greeting and farewell.

For here are meetings: moments that inherit
The hopes and wishes, that through months and years
Have held such anxious converse with the spirit,
That now its joy can only speak in tears;

And here are partings: hands that soon must sever,
Yet clasp the firmer; heart, that unto heart,
Was ne'er so closely bound before, nor ever
So near the other as when now they part;

And here Time holds his steady pace unbroken,
For all that crowds within his narrow scope;
For all the language, uttered and unspoken,
That will return when Memory comforts Hope!

One short and hurried moment, and for ever
Flies, like a dream, its sweetness and its pain;
And, for the hearts that love, the hands that sever,
Who knows what meetings are in store again?

They who are left, unto their homes returning,
With musing step, trace o'er each by-gone scene;
And they upon their journeydoth no yearning,
No backward glance, revert to what hath been?

Yes! for awhile, perchance, a tear-drop starting,
Dims the bright scenes that greet the eye and mind;
But hereas ever in life's cup of parting
Theirs is the bitterness who stay behind!

So in life's sternest, last farewell, may waken
A yearning thought, a backward glance be thrown
By them who leave: but oh! how blest the token,
To those who stay behind when THEY are gone!


' MY son,' said the wisest of modern men
whose name, of course, it were malicious to
mention, and foolish also, the object being to
promulgate charity, not to excite rancour-
' My son, if you would go through life easily,
I can give you no better rule of conduct than
this: Never wear a brown hat in Friesland.'

Now, though this piece of counsel may
sound as hieroglyphical and mysterious as
the well-known precept by Mr. Malaprop
administered to his offspring, when the latter
was about to quit home, 'Evil communication
is worth two in the bush,' it is nevertheless
susceptible of the clearest and most explicit
interpretation. Though the fruits of
particular and personal experience, it may be
applied to every man who wears a hat under
the sun, the moon, the seven stars, or the
Seven Dials! let alone the Seven United

The Brown Hat whence this saying sprung,
was merely a hat of common quality and
uncommon comfort; soft to the head, not
stiff; a screen for eyes from the sun; a thing
taking no place among the traveller's luggage
claiming no package of its own, and thus
offering no wrangling-stock to those most
tiresome of Jacks among all Jacks-in-office
to wit, Custom-house officers. It was a hat
which the Hatto of hats must have accredited
as the very perfection of a quiet, middle-aged
traveller's vade mecum; something dull-
looking, it is true, for those whose thoughts
are ' wide-awake; ' something vulgar, for any
one troubled by aristocratic fancies as to his
covering, and who loves not to be confounded
with his butterman; but withal a hat to be
defended by every man of sense, to be clung
to by every creature capable of headaches;
a hat one could be bumped about in during
a day of sixteen hours, in carriage, cart, or
third-class railway vehicle; a hat one could
lie in bed in for nightcap, or sit upon for
cushion; a kindly, comforting, unobtrusive
hat- brown, because it was of the felt's
natural colour, pliant as a piece of silk,
submissive to wind, impervious to rain. What
can we say more? A castor, as the Pilgrim's
Pollux put it, ' fit to be buried in.'

Yet such was the hat, and none other, which
save your nerves be of granite, your cheeks
of brass, and your patience the patience of a
beaveryou are hereby solemnly warned not
to wear in Friesland. In London, when you
please and where you please, but not in Meppel,
and not in Zwolle, and not in Sneek, and,
most of all, not in the market-place at
Leenwarden. As wisely might you have tried to
walk down a village-street, in Lancashire, on
Lifting-Monday (thirty years ago), thinking
to escape from the obliging maids and jolly
wives, who lurked behind their doors, bent on
tossing every passing male in a kitchen chair,
as have hoped for ten seconds of peace,—
supposing that in Friesland (two autumns since)
you took your walks abroad wearing a Brown

It will be, peradventure, imagined by those
who are not strong in their geography, or who
have not studied the Book of Dresses, or who
entertain little curiosity concerning one of the
most noticeable and original districts in
Europe,—that these touchy Friesland folk
themselves don or doff nothing worth an
Englishman turning his head to admire; carry
aloft what all the well-bred world carries,—
and therefore cannot afford to let any one
thrive, save under the shadow of the