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do this ?” cried Mrs. Marsh, abruptly that I liked his income, or thought him a turning to her daughters. “Annis, what desirable match for one of my daughters. are you looking so red for ?»
Three hundred a year! It's quite ridicuAnnis Marsh did look red, and very lous, child.” conscious. An attachment, hidden hither- “We bave considered it in all points, to from all but themselves, existed be- dearest mamma, and talked it over a tween her and Geoffry Lance, and they great deal,” resumed Annis timidly, had come to the resolution to make it and we feel sure that we shall do very known. Mrs. Marsh's surmise that be well upon it, and live comfortably. You was now speaking to the Doctor was cor- know I have had some experience in keeprect; and the Doctor came up with the ing house on small means, at Aunt Ruttnews.
“What answer did you give him ?” “For goodness' sake, Annis, don't asked Mrs. Marsh.
bring up Aunt Ruttley,” interrupted “ Told him that if he and Annis had Sophy Marsh. “The poor curate's stimade
up their minds to try it, I should pend' is but a hundred a year, with the not say nay,” replied the Doctor. “And parsonage to live in and a flock of childasked him to come in to spend the even- ren to fill it. You are head cook and ing.”
bottle-washer when you are staying there, Mrs. Marsh looked daggers; three of I expect. They must live upon bread and the young ladies looked the same. “Let cheese half their time, and pinch and conthem marry, Dr. Marsh ! let them marry trive from year's end to year's end.” upon nothing !"
“But do you not see that my insight “Oh! come, it's not so bad as that,” into how they manage their pinching and said the Doctor. “ He has three hundred contriving will be of great service to a year. What did you and I begin life me ?” returned Annis, in a patient tone. upon, old lady, eh? Annis, ask your “Mamma, I know I could manage well mamma if it was not considerably less on three hundred a year, and have every than that.”
thing comfortable. You should detect “Nonsense !” crossly responded Mrs. no pinching in my house, come as often Marsh, as the Doctor went out laughing. as you would.” “The cases are not at all alike, Annis; "If Lance had a prospect of an increase you must see that they are not. Your -of rising to five or six hundred in the papa's was a rising profession; and Lance course of a few years—I would let you will stick at his three hundred a year all promise to marry him then, with all my his life.”
heart, Annis.” " What is this Mr. Lance P” inquired “ But the very fact of his not having it, Aunt Clem. “A gentleman ?”
of his income being a fixed one, has in“Oh! of course a gentleman. He was duced us to wish to risk it, mamma. If bringing up for the Bar, but his father we wait, it will be no better; and–O died, and there was a hitch about money. mamma! pray don't say that we must I believe he did eat his terms and get cal- separate !" led, but he had nothing left to live upon " Annis, child,” interrupted Aunt Clem, while practice came, and was glad to ac- “ if you spend three hundred the first cept the secretaryship of a public institu- year, you'll want four the second, and five tion. He gets £300 a year, and he'll the third.” never get more, for it is a fixed salary, “But we do not intend to spend three not a rising one. Don't be led into ab- the first year,” said Annis, quickly. “Our surdity, Annis.”
old nurse had a favorite saying, which she “Mamma,” said Annis, going up to her always impressed upon us when we saw and speaking in a low tone, full of emo- the sugar cup full and asked for more tion, “I will never marry contrary to sugar. I repeated it one day to Geoffry, your approbation, neither would Geoffry and made him laugh. "Spare at the sack's take me on such terms. But I hope you mouth. It is what we mean to do with will not hold out against us. I have our income.”
you liked him.” “No unmarried girl can form an idea “So I do, Annis,” answered Mrs. how expenses increase after the first few Marsh, somewhat appeased by the words months,” continued Aunt Clem. and tone, “but you never heard me say “I suppose they do,” assented Annis. “The wear and tear of furniture, which hastened to call upon Annis, who had must be replaced, and the breakages, and then been married about five months. It the buying new clothes, when those laid should be observed that Annis, being of in at the wedding are worn out. All that a quiet, patient, useful disposition, had alcomes."
heard you say
ways been considerably dictated to and “ Ah !” said Aunt Clem," there's some- snubbed by her sisters; and now that she thing worse comes. Babies."
was married they forgot to discontinue “Oh!-babies,” said Annis, in a dubious the habit. tone, “I have heard they bring love with “Such bad management, Annis!" began them."
Sophy at once. “Three o'clock in the day, “It is to be hoped they do, poor and your cook answered the door to us. things,” sharply rejoined Aunt Clem, Where was Rebecca ?»
or I don't know what would become of “Rebecca is gone,” replied Mrs. Lance. them. But they don't bring money.”.
“I have only Mary.” “Well,” said Annis, with a glowing “Only Mary!" uttered Miss Sophy cheek, “we have determined to try it, aghast. “Emily, did you hear that? with all its hazards, if only papa and Whatever can you mean, Annis ?” mamma will approve.”
“ Well—it happened in this way," said “And suppose your papa and mamma Annis. “ Rebecca did not suit: she was do not approve ?"
careless, insolent to Mary, and caused “Then we must wait patiently for bet- much trouble. So I gave her warning. ter days," sighed Annis.
It then occurred to me that as my wed“And live upon hope,” said Aunt Clem, ding visits had been all paid to me, and "which is about as satisfactory as living we were not likely to see much ceremoniupon air. Well, Annis, I side with you. ous company, I might as well, for a time, You shall have my helping word for it." keep only Mary. So I spoke to Geoffry,
“You are not serious, Clementina !” ex- and he told me to try it if I liked, and claimed Mrs. Marsh.
Mary said she would rather be alone than “Indeed I am. I should not counsel have the annoyance of a servant like Reevery girl to marry upon three hundred becca. You can not think how well it a year, but Annis and Mr. Lance seem to answers. Mary is a most superior servant, have well considered what they are about, knows her work, and does it thoroughly; and are prepared to make the best of its and she is always tidy. You know her to difficulties.”
be the cook, but you could not have told II.
it from her appearance. She is not fine,
it is true, but more respectable-looking In a neighborhood where house-rent than many of the house and parlor was cheaper than at Brompton, but with maids.” in a walk of it, did Mr. and Mr. Lance “But such a degrading thing to keep settle down. For the full consent of Mrs. only one servant !” remonstrated Miss Marsh was won over, the wedding took Marsh. “Like the common people !" place, and they were fairly launched in “Ours is only a common income,” life, for better or for worse, upon their swered Annis. “ I told papa what I had three hundred a year. Their rent was done, one day that he drove here to see thirty-five pounds, and for its size the me, and he praised me for it." house was really a handsome-looking Oh!
papa has such old-fashioned no. house, which a gentleman need not be tions; something like your own, Annis. ashamed to acknowledge as his residence. Wait till you hear what mamma says to Income and other taxes amounted to it. One servant ! it must tell against you about fifteen, and the fifty pounds was a with all your friends." large item out of their income: there was "No," replied Mrs. Lance, warmly; also the fire and life insurance. Annis“ or, if it could, they would be friends seemed fully determined to carry out her not worth retaining. If they came here scheme of economy: though, in doing and found my house full of confusion, of this, she gave great umbrage, in one or discomfort, my servant dirty, myself untwo points, to some of her family. Upon presentable, they might have cause; but, the return of Mrs. Marsh and her daugh- excepting that they do not see two serters from their two months' annual so- vants, every thing is as orderly and nice journ at the sea-side, the young ladies | as when Rebecca was here. I and my
husband are not the less gentlepeople, and cleaning required, but what there is, is I am sure that they rather respect us the punctually done. Mary has her days for more for sacrificing custom to right. If it, and on those days I help.” us, or two or three friends for the evening, Marsh, with an impervious face. Mary sends round for her sister, who waits "No," laughed Annis. “While she nicely.”
does that, I go into the kitchen, wash up “But how on earth do you manage the breakfast-things, and, should it be rewith one servant ? Augusta, with her quired, set forward with the dinner.” three, complains bitterly that the work is “ Set forward for a five o'clock dinner not half done."
at nine in the morning ?” “ There is an impression with many ex- “Yes, all that can be done of it. I perienced people that the larger your make the pudding or the pie, should we number of servants, the less is your work be going to have one that day; or, if done,” smiled Mrs. Lance. “There is there is any meat to be hashed, I cut it really not so much to do in this house, and up: those sort of things. Then I dust plenty of time to do it in. We breakfast the drawing-room—and indeed I generalat eight, which gives Geoffry
ly do that, for its ornaments take so long, “My gracious! Eight! Do you con- and on these busy days I dust my own trive to get up ?"
bed-room ; and, in short, do many little “Yes,” said Annis, “and like it much odds and ends of work, so that Mary gets better than our lazy hours at home. By over her cleaning and is dressed almost as nine, or soon after, Geoffry leaves : which soon as on other days." gives him time to walk in comfortably to “ It is a fortunate thing Mr. Lance's the office by a quarter to ten.”
choice fell upon you, Annis. We should “You don't mean to say he walks ?" not like to be degraded to do the busi
“Yes, and walks home, except in very ness of a servant-of-all-work.” bad weather. He says were it not for “There is no degradation in it,” cried this walk, night and morning, he should Annis, with spirit; “what degradation not have sufficient exercise to keep him can there be ? Were I a nobleman's in health : and of course it is so much daughter or a millionnaire's, my condeomnibus money saved. He laughs at scending to know practically any thing those gentlemen who ride into town, and about it would be beneath me, quite out sit stewing in their chambers, or in an of place: but in our class of life yes, office or counting house all day, especially Emily, I speak of ours, mine and yoursthose who have need to be frugal, as we it is any thing but derogatory to help in have, and then ride home again : no exer- these domestic trifles. If it takes me an cise, no saving, and in time it will be no hour a day-and it does not take me more health. Well-Geoffry goes at nine, then on an average, I don't know what it may Mary takes away the breakfast-things, do in time — what then? It is an hour washes them up, puts her kitchen straight, well spent; an hour that I might_fritter and goes to her up-stairs work, which in away, if I did not have it to do. It does our house is not much. By eleven o'clock not make my hands coarse, less fit for my she has frequently changed her gown and drawing afterwards or my embroidery, cap, and has no more to do till time to and it does not soil my nice morning-dress, prepare for dinner at five. One day she for I have made a large brown holland asked me if I could not give her some apron to go nearly all round me, and I socks of master's to darn, as she did not turn up my sleeves; in short, it does not like sitting with her hands before her.” render me one whit less the lady, when I
“Your house is quite a prodigy-house,” sit in my drawing-room and receive any cried Sophy, in a tone bordering on sar- friend who may call upon me.
Do I look " It seems there's never any clean- less like one to you ?" ing going on."
“Psha, Annis! You picked up these "I did not say so," retorted Annis. notions of kitchen management at poor “In a small house — small compared to Aunt Ruttley's, but you ought not to be ours at home --- with only three people in forming your ideas upon them” it, and the paint, and carpets, and furni- “And very glad I am that I did pick ture all new, there is not a great deal of them up. But if I had not, if I had had
as little experience in domestic usefulness | literary tastes, our reading; and our evenas you, I believe they would have come to ings are delightful. No, I shall escape me with the necessity."
that, I hope, Emily; though I am learning “Oh! no doubt,” said Sophy scornfully; to iron.” you were inclined by nature to these “I wonder you don't learn to wash,” low-lived notions, Annis."
indignantly retorted Miss Marsh. “ There are notions abroad,” gravely “ I did wash a pair of lace sleeves the responded Mrs. Lance, “that for people other morning," laughed Mrs. Lance, in our pretentious class of society, (I can" but they turned out so yellow that Mary
“ not help calling it so, for we ape the ideas had to submit them to some whitening and manners only suited to those far process of her own, and I do not think I above us,) all participation in, all ac- shall try again. She washes all my lace quaintance even, with domestic duties is a things and Geoffry's collars, and she is thing to be ashamed of, never to be owned teaching me to iron them. Ironing was to, but contemptuously denied. They are an accomplishment I did not see much of, wrong notions, wicked notions ; false and at the parsonage, for I believe every thing hollow : for they lead to embarrassment, in the whole weekly wash was mangled, to unpaid debts, to the wronging of our except my uncle's shirts and bands. His neighbors; and the sooner the fashion surplice always was: aunt used to say he goes out, the more sensible society will would know no better. I am trying to prove itself. I don't know which is the be very useful, I assure you.
I go to worst: a woman who entirely neglects to market.” look after her household, where her sta- “ Go to where ?" tion and circumstances demand it, or one “ To market. To the butcher's and the who makes herself a domestic drudge. green-grocer's, and to the other tradespeo. Both extremes are bad, and both should ple. Not every day, but on a Saturday be avoided.”
always, and perhaps once in the week “Do you mean that as a cut at Augus- besides.” ta ?” asked Miss Marsh—“the neglecting “To save the legs of the boys who come of her household ?»
round for orders ?" asked Miss Jemima “No, Emily, I was speaking generally,” Marsh, who was a very silent girl, and replied Mrs. Lance; "though I wish Au- rarely spoke. gusta did look a little more to hers. It “No. To save Geoffry's pocket,” rewould have been well for us, I think, had plied Mrs. Lance. “For the first two or mamma brought us up in a more domestic three months we ordered every thing that manner. There is another fallacy of the way, but I found it would not do. With present day: the bringing up young meat, especially. We had unprofitable ladies to play and dance, but utterly in- pieces, without knowing the weight, withcapable as to the ruling of a household.” out knowing the price; for in delivering
Speak for yourself, if you please, An- the orders to the boy, the butcher of nis. We would rather be excused kitchen course sends what he likes, and charges rule."
what he likes. Now, that I go myself to “Why, look at Augusta,” returned Mrs. the butcher's, I choose my meat, and see Lance : would it be well for her, or not, it weighed, and know the price of every to check and direct her household ? thing before I buy it. It is a very great Their expenditure must be very large : saving." too large, I fear, for the Captain's in- “I don't think Annis is wrong there,” come."
decided Sophy, “for many very good “ At any rate, you seem determined families go to market themselves. not to err on the same side. Take care “ And I wish more did,” added Mrs. you do not degenerate into the other, the Lance. “I wish you could persuade Audomestic drudge, Annis."
gusta into doing so. I spoke to her about “I shall never do that at least, if I it, and she asked me whether I was out know myself," quickly replied Mrs. Lance. of my mind.” “I have too much regard for my husband, “ There is less occasion for Mrs. Courteam too solicitous to retain his respect and ney to trouble herself,” said Miss Marsh, affection; a domestic drudge can not re- loftily; “ she did not marry upon three main a refined, well-informed woman, an hundred a year.” enlightened companion. We keep up our "Well, I am very happy,” said Annis,
brightly, “although we have but three only it was necessary, for appearance' hundred a year."
sake, so both Captain and Mrs. Courteney “And one servant,” interposed Miss deemed, to take not being able to afford Marsh.
a footman) a third maid or a tiger : and “And one servant," laughed Annis. they took the last-named article. Next “ But I do assure you, we manage better came the babies, and with the advent of without Rebecca than with her: and as the first, the tiger was discharged and a we shall be obliged in a few months' time third maid taken in his place : and now to take a second servant, I thought we that there were three children there were ought to do with one until then.”
four maids. There !" uttered Sophy.
Captain and Mrs. Courteney also liked just what Aunt Clem said. I know it is, to go out of town in autumn, and they and you need not prepare to deny it, An- were fond of gayety, went to parties and nis. You mean that the babies will be gave them. Their housekeeping was on beginning !"
an extensive scale compared with their
income: Mrs. Courteney was no manager; III.
she knew literally nothing of practical
domestic details when she married, and The babies did begin. “Tiresome little she did not seek to acquire them; her crying creatures,” was Aunt Clem's com- servants were improvident and wasteful, ment; "they are sure to come whether she could not shut her eyes to that; but they are wanted or not, and the worst of her attempts at remedying the evil only it is, there's no end to them, no knowing amounted to an occasional storm of scold. where they'll stop."
ing, and to the sending off cook after And the time went on, and they still cook. They got into debt, they grew came; went on till Mrs. Courteney had deeper into it with every month and three and Mrs. Lance two, the former to year, and Captain Courteney, besieged her unspeakable dismay.
out of his seven senses, was fain to patch For she could not afford it. No; Cap-up matters by borrowing money of a tain and Mrs. Courteney had afforded gentleman named Ishmael Levi. Of themselves too many luxuries, to leave course he fleeced him wholesale. room for that of babies. They had com- Their real troubles of life were looming mitted a terrible mistake in marrying ominously near, the fruits of their shortupon their five hundred a year, and that sighted union, of their improvident not an increasing income. It was not only course. Captain Courteney and his wife, that they had set up their household and with their five hundred a year, had begun housekeeping upon a scale that launched into marriage, their friends would absorb every shilling of it, but the crowing over their sure prospects : Mr. ex-captain, accustomed to his clubs and Lance and Annis, and their despised their expensive society, was not a man three hundred, had been browbeat in who could practice economy out of doors, society for daring to risk it: but the deany more than his wife understood it in. spised ones were conquerors, and the The Captain could not put on a soiled pair lauded ones had failed. How was it? of gloves, he could not give up his social The one party had looked their future habits, he never dreamt of such a thing as full in the face, and deliberately resolved not going to the opera several times in the to confine their simple desires within less season, and to the theaters ad libitum, his than their income, arming themselves wife being often with him, it never oc- against temptation; the other had not so curred to him to give up his daily bottle looked at it, but had got themselves into of expensive wine, and he rarely scrupled embarrassment, through what they would to take a cab, when an omnibus, or his have called sheer inability to keep out of own legs, would have served as well. it. They had not calculated; they had They began housekeeping upon three ser- begun life too expensively; had not convants; two maids, and a tiger, who ate trolled their self-indulgences; every thing as much as the whole house put together. was on too large a scale: and now neither The house was larger than that of Mrs. knew how to go back to a smaller. Lance, and they kept more company, but They were sitting together one dull two efficient servants, with proper man- winter's day, very dull themselves, and agement, might have done the work well; talking over the aspect of affairs in a dull