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at all sleepily, but those eyes always look kindly on me.
The next evening, my story was resumed, and soon after, with some others, finished; and then, I was advised to pub lish. "What," I said, "publish these hasty sketches;" and I raised up one eyebrow, an odd habit of that said eyebrow, which has telegraphic communications with my feelings of surprise. Vanity is easily excited, and as easily persuaded; and a short time after, I actually presented the following Tales to my publisher, which he accepted. "Shall you publish under your own name?" I was asked. "Oh, no," I replied, "because I have really written these Tales after tea, amid a quiet family circle, and I have brought them to you just as they were written ; two only have been copied from the odd
scraps of paper on which I first wrote them. Now, if I mention this in my own name, no one will believe it, or it may be said, that I have no right to trouble the public with such hasty productions; besides, if I make known my name, many wise heads will shake in judgment over that name, and say, "Very childish performances for of Trinity College."
By concealing my name, though the same opinions may be entertained, and I may hear them, still I remain unknown.
I must say a few more words on my strange little volume. The Tales are addressed chiefly to young grown-up persons. I am aware, that "The Childhood of Charles Spencer" may be deemed only fit for a child's perusal, but I am one of those who delight in observing children
and their manners. The mind turns to such simplicity and freshness, as the eye to the first daisies of spring, to the first green blades of young wheat. There is a truth even in the falsehoods of children, which is not to be found in the lie of after-life. With all its proneness to deceit, the mind has not yet learned the art of concealing falsehood: some inconsistent simplicity still lingers : habit has not given a second nature to natural sinfulness: the enemy may have sown tares with the wheat, but the tares are no higher than the tender blades, and they have not yet choked them with their rank and cumbrous growth.
I have been vain enough to introduce what has been hinted to me to be very
gentlemanly poetry; really though, in. this volume, it may modestly make its appearance; should it deserve notice, even here, it will not be passed over; should it not, at least nobody can say that I have much pretension.
On one point I must make a few more remarks. I have purposely interwoven Religion with every Tale. I do not say that I have succeeded in showing Religion in its true and happy light, but I have tried not to degrade the cause I have undertaken. I know, as I have somewhere else remarked, that Religion is like pure snow, to preserve its dazzling whiteness unsullied, it should be touched only by delicately clean fingers. The persons mentioned in my stories, would not to the world (if they should act as I mean, and
think they would) appear to obtrude Religion so as to disgust the careless and profane; their faith would be seen chiefly in its beautiful and happy effects, in its ennobling the least actions, and rendering its professors more disposed to make allowances for the failings of others. They would appear to the world as the outside of a watch, where the golden hands are moving regularly over the white dial. In my Tales, I would strive to point out the works of the watch, the spring of such beautiful order. I have seen such effects produced and preserved by that inner spring; and I cannot resist, even in this humble manner, attempting to prove how much real joy there is, even in the saddest trials of the Christian; a joy which is seen in its effects but partially by the