Chapter 160141195

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Chapter NumberXIV
Chapter Title
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article160141195
Full Date1881-02-12
Page Number36
Corrections0
Word Count1356
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleAdelaide Observer (SA : 1843 - 1904)
Trove TitleEndymion
article text

THE NOVELIST.

ENDYMION.*

£By the Eight Hon. the Kabl of Beacohsfibld.]

CHAPTER XIV.

Eighteen hundred end thirty-two, the darkeit and most distressing year in the life of Mr. Ferrars, closed in comparative calm and apparent content. He was himself greatly altered, both -in manner and appearance. He was kind and gentle, bnt he was silent, and rarely smiled. His hair was grizzled, and he began to stoop. Sat he was always employed, and was interested

in bis labours.

His sanguine wife bore up against their mis -fortunes with far more animation. She was at iiist amused with her new life, and when^ she was accustomed to it she found a never-failing ?resource in her conviction of a coming reaction. Sirs. Ferrars possessed most feminine qualities, and many of them in excess. She could not :reason, but her intuition was remarkable. She was of opinion that " these people never could go od," and that they must necessarily be suc ceeded by William and his friends. In vain her husband, when she pressed her views and con victions on him, would shake his head over the 'Unprecedented majority of the Government, and ?-sigh while he acknowledged that the Tories absolutely did not now command one-fifth of the House of Commons; his shakes and sighs were equally disregarded by her, and she per sisted in her dreams of riding upon elephants. _

After all Mrs. Ferrars was right. There is nothing more remarkable in political history than the sudden break-up of the Whig party after their successful revolution in 1832. It is ?one of the most striking instances on record of all the elements of political power being useless without a commanding individual will. During the second year of their exile in the Berkshire hillB.. affairs looked so black that it seemed no ?change could occur except farther and more

?calamitous revolution. Zenobia went to

Vienna that she might breathe the atmosphere j

•of law and order, and hinted to Mrs. Ferrars that probably she should never return—at least

not until Parliament met, when she trusted the j House of Lords, if they were not abolished in the interval, would save the country. And yet at ?the commencement of the following year an old ?colleague of Mr. Ferrars apprised him, in the darkest and the deepest confidence, that " there was a screw loose," and he must" look out for •squalls."

In the meantime Mr. Ferrars increased and

established bis claims on his party, if they ever ?did rally, by his masterly articles in their great -Beview, which circumstances favoured, and which kept np that increasing feeling of terror end despair which then was deemed necessary •to the advancement of Conservative opinions.

At home a year and more had elapBed without j •change. The occasional appearance of Nigel IPenruddock was the only event. It was to all s pleasing, and to some of the family a deeply interesting, one. Nigel, though a student and ?devoted to the holy profession for which he was

destined, was also a sportsman. His Christianity I was muscular, and Endymion, to whom he had taken a fancy, became the companion of his .pastimes. All the shooting.of the estate was at Nigel's command, bnt as there were no keepers it was, of conrse, very rough work. Still it was ?a novel and animating life for Endymion; and though the sport was slight the pursuit was

keen. Then Nigel was a great fisherman, and, ]

here their efforts had a surer return, for they ?dwelt in a land of trout streams, and in their vicinity was a not inconsiderable river. It was •an adventure of delight to pursue some of these •streams to their source, throwing, as they .rambled on, the fly in the rippling waters. Myra, too, took some pleasure in these fishing ?expeditions, carrying their luncheon and a German book in her wallet, and sitting quietly on the bank for honrs, when they had fixed npon ?some favoured pool for a prolonged campaign.

Every time that Nigel returned home, a dif ference, and a striking difference, wss observed in him. His person, of course, became more manly,.bis manner more assured, his dress more modiih. It was impossible to deny that he was

?extremely good-looking, interesting in his dis- j ?course, and distinguished in his appearance. -Endymion idolized him. Nigel was his model. He imitated his manner, caught the tone of hiB voice, and began to give opinions on subjects, sacred and profane.

After a hard morning's march, one day, as they were lolliog on the turf amid the" old beeches and the jnniper, Nigel said :

" What does Mr. Ferrars mean you to be, Endymion i"'

"I do not know," said Endymion, looking perplexed.

" But 1 suppose you are to be something ?"

"Fes; I suppose I. must be something, because papa has lost his fortune."

" And what would you like to be ?"

" I never thought about it," said Endymion.

" In my opinion there is only one thing for a man to be in this age," said Nigel peremp -torily; " be shonld go into the Church."

" The Church !"said Endymion.

" There will soon be nothing else left," said Nigel. "The Church muat last for ever. It is built upon a rock. It was founded by God; all ?other governments have been founded by men. TVhen they are destroyed, and the process of •destruction seems rapid, there will be nothing .left to govern mankind except the Church."

"Indeed!" said Endymion; "papa is very -much in favour of the Church, and, I know, is writing something about it."

" Yes, but Mr. Ferrars is an Erastian," said Nigel; "you need not tell him I said so, but he

is one. He wants the Church to be the servant <of the State, and all that sort of thing, but that will not do any longer. This destruction of the Irish bishoprics has brought affairs to a crisis. No human power has the right to destroy a bishopric. It Is a divinely ordained offioe, and when a diocese is once established, it is •eternal."

"I see," said Endymion, mucb interested.

" I wish," continued Nigel," you were two or three years older, and Mr. Ferrars could send you to Oxford. That is the place to understand these things, and they will soon be the only things to understand. The rector knows nothing -about them. My father is thoroughly high and •dry, and has not the slightest idea of Church principles."

" Indeed!" said Endymion.

" It is quite a new set even at Oxford," con tinued Nigel; "but their principles are as old as the Apostles, and come down from them, ?straight."

"That is a long time ago," said Endymion.

"I have a great fancy," continued Nigel, without apparently attending to him, " to give you a thorough Church education. It would be the making of you. You would then have a purpose in life, and never be in doubt or per plexity on any snbjeot. We ought to move heaven and earth to induce Mr. Ferrars to send you to Oxford."

" I will 'speak to Myra about it," said Endy

mion.

"I said something of this to your sister the other day ."said Nigel, "but I fear she is ter ribly Ersstian. However, I will give you some thing to read. It is not very long, but you can

* The right of publishing " Endymion" has been purchased by the Proprietors of the Adelaide Obseroer.

read it at your leisure, and then we will talk over it afterwards, and perhaps I may give yon something else."

Endymion did not fail to give a report of this conversation and similar ones to his sister, for he was in the .habit of telling her everything. &he listened with attention, bnt not with inte rest, to his story. Her expression was kind, bnt hardly serions. Her wondrous eyes gave him a glance of blended mockery and affection. " Dear darling," she said, " if yon are to be a clergyman, I should like you to be a cardinal."