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“and I honor you for respecting it; but I think it makes a difference where and in what company you take it. I should not be willing for George to go into bar-room company with dissipated young men, and call for wine, but at home in a family circle it is different. A moderate use of wine never hurts any one.
It is only when carried to excess that it is injurious. You had better drink yours. So little as that will never hurt.”
Jessie was sitting by Alfred. She took up the glass he had set upon the table and gave it to him with a charming einile.
Again he took the goblet in his hand. The glowing wine was tempting but the faces around him were more tempting still. He raised it toward his lips. But at that moment there arose up before him a pale, sweet face, with pleading eyes-the sweet face of his mother in heaven. The boy laid down the glass with a firm hand and with a firm tone said,
“I cannot drink it. It was my mother's dying request that I should never taste of wine, and if I disregard it now I fear greater temptations will follow. You must pardon my seeming discourtesy, but I cannot drink it.” •
A silence fell upon the little circle. No one spoke for sereral minutes. Then Mrs. Warren said, in a voice choked with emotion: “Forgive me, my boy, for tempting you to violate your conscience. Would that all young men would show as high sense of duty."
Every one of the family put down their wine untasted.
“The boy is right,” said Mr. Warren. Drinking wine leads to deeper potations. We have done wrong in setting such an example before our children. “Here Ellen," he called to the servant,“ take away this decanter.”
And as the table was cleared of the wine and glasses, Mr. Warren said, solemnly, “ Now here, in the presence of all, I make a solemn vow never to have any more wine on my table, or drink it myself as a beverage; and may my influence and precepts be as binding on my children as the request of this boy's mother to him."
And Mrs. Warren softly responded, "Amen.”
Mr. Warren turned to Alfred. “We are not drunkards nor wine bibbers here, my boy. I have always preached temperance to my children but I have never realized before how an occasional glass of wine, if partaken of in good society, could injure. I see it now. If a person can drink one glass, he can drink another, and yet another, and it is hard to know just where to draw the line. I thank you for this lesson. I will show that I have as much manliness as a mere boy. My children will follow my example and pledge to abstain totally from wine as a beverage.”.
“We will, father," was the response.
The pledge was never broken by any of the funily, and never did Alfred Harris have cause to regret that he resisted the temptation to drink one glass of wine. Years afterward, when he was a prosperous and worthy merchant, and sweet Jessie Warren was his wife, they often spoke of the consequences which might have followed had he yielded to that one temptation; and Jessie tries to impress as firm principles upon the minds of her children as her husband's mother instilled into the heart of her boy.
THE STORY OF DEACON BROWN.
Have you heard the story of Deacon Brown-
And other things which he noted down,-
The widow looked up and said, “Du tell!
Quite well, I thank you; I hope you're the same."
But when he recovered his teeth and sense
THE LAST BANQUET.-EDWARD RENAUD. The incident narrated in this poem is based on fact, a tragedy of the kind hring reported to have occurred, during the French Revolution in 1793, in the north of France. Gitaut, the Norman marquis, sat in his banquet hall, When the shafts of the autumn sunshine gilded the castle wall; While in thro' the open windows floated the sweet perfume, Borne in from the stately garden and filling the lofty room; And still, like a strain of music breathed in an undertone, The ripple of running water rose, with its sob and moan, From the river, swift and narrow, far down in the vale below, That shone like a silver arrow shot from a bended bow.
Yonder, over the poplars, lapped in the mellow haze,
Why do you come, Breconi?” —" Marquis, you did not call; But Mignonne is waiting yonder, down by the castle wall.” “ Bid her begone!”—“ But master-poor child, she loves you so ! And, broken with bitter weeping, she told me a tale of woe. "She says there is wild work yonder, there in the hated town, Where the crowd of frenzied people are shooting the nobles
down; And to-night, ere the moon has risen, they come, with burn
ing brand, With the flame of the blazing castle to light the lurid land. “But first you must spread the banquet-host for the crew
abhorred-Ere out from the topmost turret they fling my murdered lord. Flee for thy life, Lord Marquis, flee from a frightful doom, When the night has hid the postern safe in its friendly gloom!" “Tush! are you mad, Breconi? spread them the banquet here, With flowers and fruits and viands, silver and crystal clear; Let not a touch be wanting-hasten those hands of thine! Haste to the task, Breconi- and I will draw the wine!" Slowly the sun went westward, till all the city's spires Flamed in the flood of splendor--a hundred flickering fires. Over the peaceful landscape, clasped by the girdling stream, Quivered, in mournful glory, the last expiring beam.