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Grandma told me all about it, -
Told me so I could n't doubt it,
How she danced—my grandma danced-

Long ago ;
How she held her pretty head,
How her dainty skirt she spread,
How she turned her little toes—
Smiling little human rose !

Long ago.
Grandma's hair was bright and sunny,
Dimpled cheek, tooah, how funny!
Really, quite a pretty girl,

Long ago.
Bless her! why, she wears a cap,
Grandma does, and takes a nap
Every single day; and yet
Grandma danced the minuet,

Long ago.

Now she sits there rocking, rocking,
Always knitting grandpa's stocking,
(Every girl was taught to knit

Long ago);
Yet her figure is so neat,
I can almost see her now
Bending to her partner's bow,

Long ago.
Grandma says our modern jumping,
Hopping, rushing, whirling, bumping,
Would have shocked the gentle folk,

Long ago.
No—they moved with stately grace,
Everything in proper place;
Gliding slowly forward, then
Slowly courtesying back again,

Long ago.

Modern ways are quite alarming,
Grandma says; but boys were charming-
Girls and boys I mean, of course—

Long ago.
Bravely modest, grandly shy-
What if all of us should try
Just to feel like those who met
In their graceful minuet,

Long ago ?

With the minuet in fashion,
Who could fly into a passion ?
All would wear the calm they wore

Long ago.
In time to come, if I perchance
Should tell my grandchild of our dance,
I should really like to say
"We did, dear, in some such way,
Long ago."

—Daughters of America.


Far in the bright East, so the story says,

There lived a fair slave once who loved a king ; Who followed soft, like music on his

And at his feet cast many an offering.
And he, the king, was gracious. For a while

Honors he heaped upon that loving one,
Till a new favorite charmed him; then his smile

Faded, and left the heart shorn of its sun.
Nay, more! Grown weary of beholding near

The face of her who all too freely gave, He cried unto her suddenly, “ One dear

And precious gift hast thou withheld, O slave." “Name it, О master," answered she full low, “For love hath left me beggared." Then straightway,

Smiling, he asked, “Wilt thou yield life and go

For love of me among the dead to-day ?”
“For love of thee,” she whispered, “yea, O king :

Since lesser gifts I gave thee, now shall I
Refuse thy heart this royal offering ?

Happy thy slave is at thy feet to die."
Then flashed the swift blade downward—but, meanwhile,
The king's new favorite had forgot to smile !

So runs the story of old days. And now

While we sit here, and heaven shines blue above,
My heart has its misgivings, and somehow

I think of her whom once you used to love.
You tell me you forget her; but, alas !

Hers was a noble nature to forego
All life held dear. To die, and let you pass

Free in the sun, because she loved you so.
And yet, despite of this, you laugh and jest,

And breathe the old vows over unto me,
Her rival-yea, for whom at your behest

She passed into the great immensity.
She is avenged; for, knowing what I do,

Life's sweetest joys are poisoned. When you speak,
Or wake the music of lost days anew,

Whisper soft speeches, kiss my fevered cheek,
I do recall her history-and meanwhile,
Like the king's favorite, I forget to smile.

- Elvira S. Miller.



The trumpet sounded short and sharp. The gate-keepers threw the stalls open. First came the mounted attendants of the charioteers, five in all, Ben Hur having rejected the service. The chalk line was lowered to let them pass, then raised again. keepers called their men. Instantly the ushers on the balcony

The gate

waved their hands, and shouted with all their strength,—“Down! Down!”

As well have whistled to stay a storm.

Forth from each stall, like missiles a volley from so many guns, rushed the six fours; and up the vast assemblage rose, electrified and irrepressible, and, leaping upon the benches, filled the circus and the air above it with yells and screams. The competitors were now under full view from nearly every part of the circus, yet the race was not begun; they had first to make successfully the chalk line.

The arena swam in a dazzle of light; yet each driver looked first for the rope, then for the coveted inner line. So, all six aiming at the same point and speeding furiously, a collision seemed inevitable. Quick the eye, steady the hand, and unerring the judgment required.

The competitors have started, each on the shortest line, for the position near the wall. The fours neared the rope together. Then the trumpeter blew vigorously a signal. The judges dropped the rope, and not an instant too soon, for the hoof of one of Messala’s horses struck it as it fell. Nothing daunted, the Roman shook out his long lash, loosed the reins, leaned forward, and, with a triumphant shout, took the wall.

“ Jove with us ! Jove with us!” yelled all the Roman faction in a frenzy of delight.

On swept the Corinthian, on the Byzantine, on the Sidonian.
“A hundred sestertii on the Jew !” cried Sanballat.
“ Taken!” answered Drusus.

Ben Hur was to the front, coursing freely forward along with the Roman.

The race was on, the souls of the racers were in it; over them bent the myriads. When the race began Ben Hur was on the extreme left of the six. When not half

way across

he saw that Messala's rush would, if there was no collision and the rope fell, give him the wall.

The rope fell, and all the fours but Ben Hur's sprang into the course under urgency of voice and lash. Ben Hur drew to the right, and darted across the trails of his opponents, swept around and took the course on the outside, neck and neck with Messala. The two neared the second goal. Viewed from the west, was a

the arena,

stone wall in the form of a half-circle. A successful turn at this point was the most telling test of the charioteer. A hush fell over all the circus. At this critical moment, Messala, whirling his lash with practised hand, caught the Arabs of Ben Hur a cut the like of which they had never known, simultaneously shouting,—"Down, Eros! up, Mars ! ”

Involuntarily, down from the balcony, as thunder falls, burst the indignant cry of the spectators.

Forward sprang the affrighted Arabs as with one impulse, and forward leaped the car. No hand had ever been laid


them except in love.

Where obtained Ben Hur the large hand and mighty grip which helped him now so well? Where but from the oar with which so long he fought the sea! And what was the spring of the floor under his feet, to the dizzy, eccentric lurch with which, in old times, the trembling ship yielded to the beat of the staggering billows, drunk with power? So he kept his place, and gave the four free rein, and, calling to them in soothing voice, tried merely to guide them round the dangerous turn; and before the fever of the people began to abate, he had back the mastery. On approaching the first goal, he was again side by side with Messala.

Gradually the speed had been quickened ; gradually the blood of the competitors warmed with the work. Men and beasts seemed to know alike that the final crisis was near. Messala throws loose the rein, while Ben Hur throws all his weight on the bits. One ball and one dolphin remained on the entablature, and all the people drew a long breath, for the beginning of the end was at hand. • Ben Hur!” “Ben Hur !” shout the throng. “Speed thee, Jew! Take the wall now—now or never!" At the second goal there was still no change.

And now to make the turn, Messala began to draw in his left hand steeds. On the three pillars, only six hundred feet away, were fame, increase of fortune, and a triumph ineffably sweet by hate, all in store for him.

Ben Hur leaned over his Arabs and gave them the reins. Out flew the many folded lash in his hand, and over the backs of the startled steeds it writhed and hissed, and hissed and writhed, again and again ; though it fell not, there were both sting and menace in its quick report. Instantly, not one, but this four as one, answered

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