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goodness, there's no nigger about me!" Well, what are you if you ain't a nigger, you conceited little black something?" inquired her fellow-servant one day, in tones of exasperation. "I'm no nigger. I'm a Hayti," responded Rosina haughtily. Being asked subsequently why she called herself

a

"Hayti," she laughed shamefacedly as she answered: "Oh, Lor', ma'am! I just wanted to say something to shut Marie's mouth. She's always crowin' over me because she's yellow."

This poor girl's idea of bliss was to be white; she could not imagine how a white person could ever be downcast or despairing; in her opinion, the color was enough to console one for anything. Her conception of heaven was that there she would be rid of her dark skin. It was quite pathetic to hear her shrilling, over her work,

"Land where my fathers died,

Land of the pilgrims' pride,"

as if it gave her passionate pleasure to identify herself, in song, with the "dominant race."

The single color line of the whites and the variegated color line of the negroes are equally hard to cross; and without doubt the latter is accountable for the strange want of solidarity among the dark race which may often be noted. The yellow Afro-American learned from the white American the bitter lesson he now passes on so pitilessly to his black brethren; and sometimes one wonders what the upshot of it all will be.

The National The death of Rev. Samuel F. Hymn. Smith brings up again the subject of the origin of the tune to which he wrote the words of the national hymn America. The Souvenirs de la Marquise de Créquy contain the solution of this muchdisputed question.

The music was composed by Lully, an Italian, educated in France, and distinguished as the creator of French opera. The original text was written by Madame de Brinon, a Parisian lady. The hymn was suggested by Madame de Maintenon,

in honor of King Louis XIV. on his appear-
ance at the official opening of the school
for noble young ladies at the convent of
St. Cyr, in 1686. It was sung by the pupils
at the entrance of the king into the chapel,
and the words were as follows:-

"Grand Dieu, sauvez le Roi!
Grand Dieu, vengez le Roi!
Vive le Roi !

Qu'à jamais glorieux
Louis victorieux

Voye ses ennemis

Toujours soumis.

Grand Dieu, sauvez le Roi!
Grand Dieu, vengez le Roi!

Vive le Roi!"

It was a tradition at St. Cyr that Handel, during a visit to the superior of the convent, asked and obtained permission to copy the air and the words of that French invocation; and this assertion is supported by a written declaration, signed by the nuns of St. Cyr, and also by a full narration of the circumstances in the Memoirs of the Duchess of Perth, who gives three nuns of St. Cyr as her authority. Handel published the music with English words, and offered the work to King George I. of England, apparently as his own composition.

In 1790, a Danish clergyman, Heinrich Harries, prepared a hymn in honor of the birthday of King Christian VIII. of Denmark, and set it to what was called the English tune of God Save the King.

In 1793, a German scholar, Dr. Schumacher, translated the Danish hymn, with slight alterations, and published it in a Berlin newspaper, as a greeting to King Friedrich Wilhelm on his return from the campaign against France. That hymn, Heil dir im Siegerkranz, sung to the melody of God Save the King, became at once the favorite national hymn of Germany, and found its way also into Austria, Hungary, and Iceland; both music and words being in every case a plagiarism of the French originals.

Mr. Smith borrowed the tune from a German music-book, being entirely ignorant of the history of the composition, and he wrote his text without reference to the royalist invocation.

ATLANTIC MONTHLY:

A Magazine of Literature, Science, Art, and Politics.

VOL. LXXVII. — JUNE, 1896.— No. CCCCLXIV.

VII.

THE OLD THINGS.

As soon as her sister was married Fleda went down to Mrs. Gereth at Ricks, a promise to this effect having been promptly exacted and given; and her inner vision was much more fixed on the alterations there, complete now, as she understood, than on the success of her plotting and pinching for Maggie's happiness. Her imagination, in the interval, had indeed had plenty to do and numerous scenes to visit; for when, on the summons just mentioned, it had taken a flight from West Kensington to Ricks, it had hung but an hour over the terrace of painted pots, and then yielded to a current of the upper air that swept it straight off to Poynton and Waterbath. Not a sound had reached her of any supreme clash, and Mrs. Gereth had communicated next to nothing; giving out that, as was easily conceivable, she was too busy, too bitter, and too tired for vain civilities. All she had written was that she had got the new place well in hand, and that Fleda would be surprised at the way it was turning out. Everything was even yet upside down; nevertheless, in the sense of having passed the threshold of Poynton for the last time, the amputation, as she called it, had been performed. Her leg had come off, she had now begun to stump along with the lovely wooden substitute; she would stump for life, and what her young friend was to come and admire was the beauty of her movement and

the noise she made about the house. The reserve of Poynton and Waterbath had been matched by the austerity of Fleda's own secret, under the discipline of which she had repeated to herself a hundred times a day that she rejoiced at having cares that excluded all thought of it. She had lavished herself, in act, on Maggie and the curate, and had opposed to her father's selfishness a sweetness quite ecstatic. The young couple wondered why they had waited so long, since everything was after all so easy. She had thought of everything, even to how the "quietness" of the wedding should be relieved by champagne, and her father be kept brilliant on a single bottle. Fleda knew, in short, and liked the knowledge, that for several weeks she had appeared exemplary in every relation of life.

She had been perfectly prepared to be surprised at Ricks, for Mrs. Gereth was a wonder-working wizard, with a command, when all was said, of good material; but the impression in wait for her on the threshold made her catch her breath and falter. Dusk had fallen when she arrived, and in the plain square hall, one of the few good features, the glow of a Venetian lamp just showed, on either wall, the richness of an admirable tapestry. This instant perception that the place had been dressed at the expense of Poynton was a shock: it was as if she had abruptly seen herself in the light of an accomplice. The next moment, folded in Mrs. Gereth's arms, her eyes were

diverted; but she had already had, in a flash, the vision of the great gaps in the other house. The two tapestries, not the largest, but those most splendidly toned by time, had been on the whole its most uplifted pride. When she could really see again, she was in the drawing-room, on a sofa, staring with intensity at an object soon distinct as the great Italian cabinet that, at Poynton, had been in the red saloon. Without looking, she was sure the room was occupied with other objects like it, stuffed with as many as it could hold of the trophies of her friend's struggle. By this time the very fingers of her glove, resting on the seat of the sofa, had thrilled at the touch of an old velvet brocade, a wondrous texture that she could recognize, would have recognized among a thousand, without dropping her eyes on it. They stuck to the cabinet with a kind of dissimulated dread, while she painfully asked herself whether she should notice it, notice everything, or just pretend not to be affected. How could she pretend not to be affected, with the very pendants of the lustres tinkling at her, and with Mrs. Gereth, beside her and staring at her, even as she herself stared at the cabinet, hunching up a back like Atlas under his globe? She was appalled at this image of what Mrs. Gereth had on her shoulders. That lady was waiting and watching her, bracing herself, and preparing the same face of confession and defiance she had shown the day, at Poynton, she had been surprised in the corridor. It was farcical not to speak; and yet to exclaim, to participate, would give one a bad sense of being mixed up with a theft. This ugly word sounded, for herself, in Fleda's silence, and the very violence of it jarred her into a scared glance, as of a creature detected, to right and left. But what, again, the full picture most showed her was the faraway empty sockets, a scandal of nakedness in high, bare walls. She at last uttered something formal and incoherent,

she did n't know what it had no re

lation to either house. Then she felt Mrs. Gereth's hand once more on her arm. "I've arranged a charming room for you, it's really lovely. You'll be very happy there." This was spoken with extraordinary sweetness, and with a smile that meant, "Oh, I know what you 're thinking; but what does it matter when you 're so loyally on my side?" It had come, indeed, to a question of "sides," Fleda thought, for the whole place was in battle array. In the soft lamplight, with one fine feature after another looming up into sombre richness, it defied her not to pronounce it a triumph of taste. Her passion for beauty leaped back into life; and was not what now most appealed to it a certain gorgeous audacity? Mrs. Gereth's high hand was, as mere great effect, the climax of the impression.

"It's too wonderful, what you've done with the house!" The visitor met her friend's eyes. They lighted up with joy,

that friend herself so pleased with what she had done. This was not at all, in its accidental air of enthusiasm, what Fleda wanted to have said: it offered her as stupidly announcing from the first minute on whose side she was. Such was clearly the way Mrs. Gereth took it: she threw herself upon the delightful girl and tenderly embraced her again; so that Fleda soon went on, with a studied difference and a cooler inspection: "Why, you brought away absolutely everything!"

"Oh no, not everything; I saw how little I could get into this scrap of a house. I only brought away what I required." Fleda had got up; she took a turn round the room. "You 'required' the very best pieces, the morceaux de musee, the individual gems!" she answered, smiling.

"I certainly did n't want the rubbish, if that's what you mean." Mrs. Gereth, on the sofa, followed the direction of her companion's eyes; with the light of her satisfaction still in her face, she slowly rubbed her large, handsome hands.

Wherever she was, she was herself the great piece in the gallery. It was the first Fleda had heard of there being "rubbish" at Poynton, but she did n't, for the moment, take up this insincerity; she only, from where she stood in the room, called out, one after the other, as if she had had a list in her hand, the pieces that in the great house had been scattered, and that now, if they had a fault, were too much like a minuet danced on a hearth-rug. She knew them each, in every chink and charm, knew them by the personal name their distinctive sign or story had given them; and a second time she felt how, against her intention, this uttered knowledge struck her hostess as so much free approval. Mrs. Gereth was never indifferent to approval, and there was nothing she could so love you for as for doing justice to her deep morality. There was a particular gleam in her eyes when Fleda exclaimed at last, dazzled by the display, "And even the Maltese cross!" That description, though technically incorrect, had always been applied, at Poynton, to a small but marvelous crucifix of ivory, a masterpiece of delicacy, of expression, and of the great Spanish period, the existence and precarious accessibility of which she had heard of, at Malta, years before, by an odd and romantic chance, a clue followed through mazes of secrecy till the treasure was at last unearthed.

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"Even' the Maltese cross?" Mrs. Gereth rose as she sharply echoed the words. "My dear child, you don't supI'd have sacrificed that? For what in the world would you have taken me?" "A bibelot the more or the less," Fleda said, "could have made little difference in this grand general view of you. I take you simply for the greatest of all conjurers. You've operated with a quickness and with a quietness! Her voice trembled a little as she spoke, for the plain meaning of her words was that what her friend had achieved belonged to the class of achievement essen

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tially involving the protection of darkness. Fleda felt she really could say nothing at all if she could n't say that she knew what the danger had been. She completed her thought by a resolute and perfectly candid question: "How in the world did you get off with them?"

Mrs. Gereth confessed to the fact of danger with a cynicism that surprised the girl. "By calculating, by choosing my time. I was quiet, and I was quick. I manoeuvred; then at the last I rushed!" Fleda drew a long breath: she saw in the poor woman something much better than sophistical ease, a crude elation that was a comparatively simple state to deal with. Her elation, it was true, was not so much from what she had done as from the way she had done it, — by as brilliant a stroke as any commemorated in the annals of crime. "I succeeded because I had thought it all out and left nothing to chance the whole process was organized in advance, so that the mere carrying it into effect took but a few hours. It was largely a matter of money: oh, I was horribly extravagant,- I had to turn on so many people. But they were all to be had, - a little army of workers, the packers, the porters, the helpers of every sort, the men with the mighty vans. was a question of arranging in Tottenham Court Road and of paying the price. I have n't paid it yet; there'll be a horrid bill; but at least the thing's done! Expedition pure and simple was the essence of the bargain. 'I can give you two days,' I said; 'I can't give you another second.' They undertook the job, and the two days saw them through. The people came down on a Tuesday morning; they were off on the Thursday. I admit that some of them worked all Wednesday night. I had thought it all out; I stood over them; I showed them how. Yes, I coaxed them, I made love to them. Oh, I was inspired, they found me wonderful. I neither ate nor slept, but I was as calm as I am now. I did n't know what was in me; it was worth find

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ing out. I'm very remarkable, my dear: I lifted tons with my own arms. tired, very, very tired; but there's neither a scratch nor a nick, there isn't a teacup missing." Magnificent both in her exhaustion and in her triumph, Mrs. Gereth sank on the sofa again, the sweep of her eyes a rich synthesis and the restless friction of her hands a clear betrayal. "Upon my word," she laughed, "they really look better here!"

Fleda had listened in awe. "And no one at Poynton said anything? There was no alarm?"

"What alarm should there have been? Owen left me almost defiantly alone: I had taken a time that I had reason to believe was safe from a descent." Fleda had another wonder, which she hesitated to express it would scarcely do to ask Mrs. Gereth if she had n't stood in fear of her servants. She knew, moreover, some of the secrets of her humorous household rule, all made up of shocks to shyness and provocations to curiosity, a diplomacy so artful that several of the maids quite yearned to accompany her to Ricks. Mrs. Gereth, reading sharply the whole of her visitor's thought, caught it up with fine frankness. "You mean that I was watched, that he had his myrmidons, pledged to wire him if they should see what I was up to'? Precisely. I know the three persons you have in mind: I had them in mind myself. Well, I took a line with them, tled them."

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straight in the eye, giving him the chance to choose if he'd gratify me or gratify my son. He gratified me. They were too stupid!"

Mrs. Gereth massed herself there more and more as an immoral woman, but Fleda had to recognize that she too would have been stupid, and she too would have gratified her. "And when did all this take place?”

"Only last week; it seems a hundred years. We've worked here as fast as we worked there, but I'm not settled yet: you'll see in the rest of the house. However, the worst is over."

"Do you really think so?" Fleda presently inquired. "I mean, does he, after the fact, as it were, accept it?"

"Owen - what I've done? I have n't the least idea," said Mrs. Gereth. "Does Mona?

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They may not have known of my leaving." Fleda wondered afresh; it struck her as scarcely supposable that some sign should n't have flashed from Poynton to London. If the storm was taking this term of silence to gather, even in Mona's breast, it would probably discharge itself in some startling form. The great hush of every one concerned was strange; but when she pressed Mrs. Gereth for some explanation of it, that lady only replied, with her brave irony, "Oh, I took their breath away!" She had no illusions, however; she was still prepared to fight. What indeed was her spoliation of Poynton but the first engagement of a campaign?

All this was exciting, but Fleda's spirit

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