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vase which he had substituted for the widow's
flowerpot, said something, however, for him.
The widow and her daughter greeted him with
hearty smiles and thanks; but he had
something else to do than to return them
something of which he seemed to be exceedingly
ashamed. At last he did it. " I mean no
offence," he said; " but this is much more yours
than mine." He laid upon the table twenty
guineas. They refused the money with
surprise; Susan with eagerness. He told them
his story; how the plant had saved him from
the chance of being turned out of his home;
how he was making money by the flower, and
how fairly he considered half the profits to be
due to its real owner. Thereupon the three
became fast friends and began to quarrel.
While they were quarrelling there was a
bouncing knock at the door. Mother and
daughter hurried to the door; but Susan
stood aside that Harry might go first into his
mother's arms.

"Here's a fine chime of bells," said Harry,
looking at his plant after a few minutes.
"Why it looks no handsomer in the West
Indies. But whereever did you get that
splendid pot?"

George was immediately introduced. The
whole story was told, and Harry was made a
referee upon the twenty guinea question.

"God bless you, Mr. Swayne," said Harry,
" keep that money if we are to be friends.
Give us your hand, my boy; and, mother,
let us all have something to eat." They made
a little festival that evening in the widow's
house, and George thought more than ever of
the chiming of the bells as Susan laid her
needlework aside to bustle to and fro. Harry
had tales to tell over his pipe; "and I tell you
what, Swayne," said he, " I'm glad you are
the better for my love of rooting. If I wasn't
a sailor myself I'd be a gardener. I've a
small cargo of roots and seeds in my box that
I brought home for mother to try what she
can do with. My opinion is that you're the
man to turn 'em to account; and so, mate, you
shall have 'em. If you get a lucky penny
out of any one among 'em you're welcome;
for it's more than we could do."

How these poor folks laboured to be
liberal towards each other: how Harry
amused himself on holidays before his next
ship sailed with rake and spade about his
friend's nursery: how George Swayne spent
summer and autumn evenings in the little
parlour: how there was really and truly a
chime rung from Stepney steeple to give joy
to a little needlewoman's heart: how Susan
Swayne became much rosier than Susan Ellis
had been: how luxuriously George's bees
were fed upon new dainties: how Flint and
Grinston conveyed the nursery-ground to
Mr. Swayne in freehold to him and his
heirs for ever, in consideration of the whole
purchase money which Swayne had accumulated:
how the old house was enlarged: how,
a year or two later, little Harry Swayne
damaged the borders and was abetted by
grandmother Ellis in so doing: how a year
or two after that, Susan Swayne the lesser
dug with a small wooden spade side by side
with giant Uncle Harry; who was a man to
find the centre of the earth under Swayne's
garden when he came home ever and anon
from beyond the seas, always with roots and
seeds, his home being Swayne's nursery: and,
finally, how happy and how populous a home
the house in Swayne's nursery grew to be
these are results connecting pleasant thoughts
with the true story of the earliest cultivation
in this country of the flower now known as
the Fuchsia.


The original stuff out of which a French
workman is made, islet us, ourselves French
workmen, tell youa street boy of fourteen
years old, or if you like, twelve. That young
gamin de Paris can sing as many love
ditties and drinking songs as the hairs upon
his head, before he knows how much is nine
times seven. He prefers always the agreeable
to the useful; he knows how to dance all the
quadrilles: he knows how to make grimaces
of ten thousand sorts one after the other
without stopping, and at the rate of twenty
in a minute. Of his other attainments, I say
little. It is possible that he may have been to
one of the elementary schools set up by the
Government; or, it may be also, that he knows
not how to read; although, by article ten of
a law passed in eighteen hundred and thirty-
three, it was determined that no chief town
of a department, or chief place of a commune
containing more than six thousand inhabitants,
should be without at least one elementary
school for public instruction.

Such as the boy may be, he is made an
apprentice. He needs no act, or as you say
in England, indenture. His contract has to be
attested at the Prefecture of Police, Bureau of
Passports, Section of Livrets. Formerly, it was
the custom in France for the apprentice to
be both fed and lodged by his master; but,
as the patron seldom received money with
him, he was mainly fed on cuffs. Apprenticeship
in Pariswhich is Francebegins at
ages differing according to the nature of
the trade. If strength be wanted, the youth
is apprenticed at eighteen, but otherwise,
perhaps at fourteen. There are in Paris
nineteen thousand apprentices dispersed
among two hundred and seventy branches
of trade.

Of all the apprentices whose number has
been just named, only one in five is bound by a
written agreement with his master. The rest
have a verbal understanding. The youths
commonly are restless; and, since they are apt
to change their minds, the business of the
master is not so much to teach them as
to obtain value for himself as soon as he can

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