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ever he asks, and get me the letter.”—“Why, sir, I tell you he was sellin' them before my face for fourpence a-piece."

“Go back, you scoundrel! or I 'll horsewhip you; and if you're longer than an hour, I 'll have you ducked in the horsepond !"

Andy vanished, and made a second visit to the post-office. When he arrived, two other persons were getting letters, and the postmaster was selecting the epistles for each, from a parcel of them that lay before him on the counter ; at the same time many shop customers were waiting to be served.

“I'm come for that letther,” said Andy.-"I'll attend to you by-and-by.”

“ The masther 's in a hurry."_“Let him wait till his hurry's over."

“ He'll murther me if I'm not back soon.”—“I'm glad to hear it.”

While the postmaster went on with such provoking answers to these appeals for despatch, Andy's eye caught the heap of letters that lay on the counter ; so, while certain weighing of soap and tobacco was going forward, he contrived to become possessed of two letters from the heap; and, having effected that, waited patiently enough until it was the great man's pleasure to give him the missive directed to his master.

Then did Andy bestride his hack, and, in triumph at his trick on the postmaster, rattle along the road homeward as fast as his hack could carry him. He came into the squire's presence, his face beaming with delight, and an air of self-satisfied superiority in his manner, quite unaccountable to his master, until he pulled forth his hand, which had been grubbing up his prizes from the bottom of his pocket; and holding three letters over his head, while he said “Look at that !” he next slapped them down under his broad fist on the table before the squire, saying,

- Well ! if he did make me pay elevenpence, by gor, I brought your honour the worth o' your money, any how!"




Old Farmer Wall, of Manor Hall,

To market drove his wain :
Along the road it went well stowed

With sacks of golden grain.

His station he took, but in vain did he look

For a customer all the morn;
Though the farmers all, save Farmer Wall,

They sold off all their corn.

Then home he went, sore discontent,

And many an oath he swore,
And he kicked up rows with his children and spouse,

When they met him at the door.

Next market-day, he drove away

To the town his loaded wain : The farmers all, save Farmer Wall,

They sold off all their grain.

No bidder he found, and he stood astound

At the close of the market-day, When the market was done, and the chapmen were gone

Each man his several way.

He stalked by his load along the road;

His face with wrath was red:
His arms he tossed, like a goodman crossed

In seeking his daily bread.

His face was red, and fierce was his tread,

And with lusty voice cried he:
My corn I'll sell to the devil of hell,

If he'll my chapman be."
These words he spoke just under an oak

Seven hundred winters old ;
And he straight was aware of a man sitting there

On the roots and grassy mould.
The roots rose high o'er the green-sward dry,

And the grass around was green,
Save just the space of the stranger's place,

Where it seemed as fire had been.
All scorched was the spot, as gipsy-pot

Had swung and bubbled there :
The grass was marred, the roots were charred,

And the ivy stems were bare.

The stranger up-sprung : to the farmer he Aung

A loud and friendly hail,
And he said, “I see well, thou hast corn to sell,

And I 'll buy it on the nail.”
The twain in a trice agreed on the price;

The stranger his earnest paid,
And with horses and wain to come for the grain

His own appointment made.
The farmer cracked his whip, and tracked

His way right merrily on:
He struck up a song, as he trudged along,

For joy that his job was done.

His children fair he danced in the air ;

His heart with joy was big ;
He kissed his wife; he seized a knife,

He slew a sucking pig.

The faggots burned, the porkling turned

And crackled before the fire;
And an odour arose, that was sweet in the nose

Of a passing ghostly friar.
He twirled at the pin, he entered in,

He sate down at the board ;
The pig he blessed, when he saw it well dressed,

And the humming ale out-poured.
The friar laughed, the friar quaffed,

He chirped like a bird in May;
The farmer told how his corn he had sold

As he journeyed home that day,

The friar he quaffed, but no longer he laughed,

He changed from red to pale:
Oh, helpless elf ! 'tis the fiend himself

To whom thou hast made thy sale !"
The friar he quaffed, he took a deep draught;

He crossed himself amain :
Oh, slave of pelf! 'tis the devil himself

To whom thou hast sold thy grain !
And sure as the day, he 'll fetch thee

away, With the corn which thou hast sold, If thou let him pay o'er one tester more

Than thy settled price in gold.”

The farmer gave vent to a loud lament,

The wife to a long outcry;
Their relish for pig and ale was flown;

The friar alone picked every bone,
And drained the flagon dry.

The friar was gone : the morning dawn

Appeared, and the stranger's wain Came to the hour, with six-horse power,

To fetch the purchased grain.

The horses were black: on their dewy track

Light steam from the ground up-curled ; Long wreaths of smoke from their nostrils broke,

And their tails like torches whirled.

More dark and grim, in face and limb,

Seemed the stranger than before,
As his empty wain, with steeds thrice twain,

Drew up to the farmer's door.

On the stranger's face was a sly grimace,

As he seized the sacks of grain;
And, one by one, till left were none,

He tossed them on the wain.
And slily he leered, as his hand up-reared

A purse of costly mould,
Where, bright and fresh, through a silver mesh,

Shone forth the glistering gold.
The farmer held out his right hand stout,

And drew it back with dread;
For in fancy he heard each warning word

The supping friar had said.

was set on the silver net ;
His thoughts were in fearful strife;
When, sudden as fate, the glittering bait

Was snatched by his loving wife.
And, swift as thought, the stranger caught

The farmer his waist around,
And at once the twain and the loaded wain

Sank through the rifted ground.
The gable-end wall of Manor Hall

Fell in ruins on the place :
That stone-heap old the tale has told

To each succeeding race.
The wife



that rent the sky At her goodman's downward flight: But she held the purse fast, and a glance she cast

To see that all was right. 'Twas the fiend's full pay for her goodman grey,

And the gold was good and true;
Which made her declare, that “his dealings were fair,

To give the devil his due.”
She wore the black pall for Farmer Wall,

From her fond embraces riven :
But she won the vows of a younger spouse

With the gold which the fiend had given.
Now, farmers, beware what oaths you swear

When you cannot sell your corn ;
Lest, to bid and buy, a stranger be nigh,

With hidden tail and horn.
And, with good heed, the moral a-read,

Which is of this tale the pith,
If your corn you sell to the fiend of hell,

You may sell yourself therewith.
And if by mishap you fall in the trap, —

you bring the fiend to shame, Lest the tempting prize should dazzle her eyes,

Lock up your frugal dame.






Yes—here I am, Terence O'Shaughnessy, an honest major of foot, five feet eleven and a half, and forty-one, if I only live till Michaelmas. Kicked upon the world before the down had blackened on my chin, Fortune and I have been wrestling from the cradle ;

;-and yet I had little to tempt the jade's malevolence. The youngest son of an excellent gentleman, who, with an ill-paid rental of twelve hundred pounds, kept his wife in Bath, and his hounds in Tipperary, my patrimony would have scarcely purchased tools for a highwayman, when in my tenth year my father's sister sent for me to Roundwood; for, hearing that I was regularly going to the devil, she had determined to redeem me, if she could.

My aunt Honor was the widow of a captain of dragoons, who got his quietus in the Low Countries some years before I saw the light. His relict had, in compliment to the memory of her departed lord, eschewed matrimony, and, like a Christian woman, devoted her few and evil days to cards and religion. She was a true specimen of an Irish dowager. Her means were small, her temper short. She was stiff as a ramrod, and proud as a field-marshal. To her, my education and future settlement in life were entirely confided, as one brief month deprived me of both parents. My mother died in a state of insolvency, greatly regretted by every body in Bath to whom she was indebted; and before her disconsolate husband had time to overlook a moiety of the card claims transmitted for his liquidation, he broke his neck in attempting to leap the pound-wall of Oranmore, for a bet of a rump and dozen. Of course he was waked, and buried like a gentleman,every thing sold off by the creditors--my brothers sent to school-and I left to the tender mercy and sole management of the widow of Captain O'Finn.

My aunt's guardianship continued seven years, and at the expiration of that time I was weary of her thrall, and she tired of my tutelage. I was now at an age when some walk of life must be selected and pursued. For any honest avocation I had, as it was universally admitted, neither abilities nor inclination. What was to be done? and how was I to be disposed of? A short deliberation showed that there was but one path for me to follow, and I was handed over to that refugium peccatorum, the army, and placed as a volunteer in a regiment just raised, with a promise from the colonel that I should be promoted to the first ensigncy that became vacant.

Great was our mutual joy when Mrs. O'Finn and I were about to part company. I took an affectionate leave of all my kindred and acquaintances, and even, in the fulness of my heart, shook hands with the schoolmaster, though in boyhood I had devoted him to the infernal gods for his wanton barbarity. But my tenderest parting was reserved for my next-door neighbour, the belle among the village beauties, and presumptive heiress to the virtues and estates of Quartermaster Mac Gawly.

Biddy Mac Gawly was a year younger than myself; and, to do her


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