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one of his elder brothers or sisters, whether what we call up is not recollected as within reach of their own memory. They will tell him that in their childhood-days there was an itineracy among those who wrought in the various spheres of handicraft. Every settlement had its itinerant shoemaker, who traveled from one farm-house to another in winter time, carrying his tools, even including the bench on his back, earning the means of livelihood by making and mending shoes. The farmer himself provided the leather for the shoes of his family, for which he traded the hides of his beeves and the bark of his trees. That the leather of those days was much better than the soggy stuff that uow-a-days goes by that name we need scarcely assert. At present leather is not made for shoes, it is made for money. Glorious age of steam! But we are growing sour and censorious. So jam satis, as the learned say, which being interpreted means, enough of that.
As our recollection assures us, it was not a small pleasure which was felt around the farm-house, at beholding through the falling flakes of the first snow, how father came riding home from the tannery with a solid bundle of leather laid across the horse before him. It was a sound of comfort which rolled from its heavy folds when it struck the frozen ground as it was cast over the fence into the yard. Then, too, it was pleasant to know that " the little shoemaker" was just finishing at the neighboring farm house, and would be on to-morrow. This was all well known among " the boys ;" for school had commenced, and it was not only told that the shoemaker was near, but. the oldest boys from the neighboring farms had actually appeared in school with their new shoes.
The day came, and there was the little man with his bench and tools. These properly arranged before the window of a warm room, all were called !n and the measure of each wastaken The good father was there as king of that nation, giving directions to the effect that thick and firm leather should be used for the soles. Paper soles were not in fashion then, at least not in the country; and for this fact we owe a debt of gratitude to our worthy parents. Besides, thereby, our present estimation of their good sense and sturdy virtues, is greatly increased. Those substantial shoes of the olden times, "how sweet their memory still!" In them placed, how well protected was the foot against the cold around and the rough frozen.earth beneath. One felt manly to go forth in such shoes —having true lordship over earth and elements.
One important question which was always asked of " the little shoemaker," and the answer of which was not without considerable interest to " the boys" was, whether father had directed nails to be put into the soles. The boys of that day had one, and only one objection to nailed soles—they were a hindrance in the skating operations, not only drawing barbarous lines across the ice and thus wearing it faster, but also interfering with the swift, smooth slide. But this was the very thing that father wished to hinder, being, perhaps, correctly of opinion that the boys had exercise sufficient in other ways, and wishing at the same time to save sole-leather; at the root of which desire lay principles of economy, which if too severely attended to then, are certainly not too much practised now. Skates were not yet introduced in rural regions in those days.
Another interesting point was wont to coi.ie up at the annual winter visit of the little itineraut shoemaker. Rather, indeed, two poiuts. Oue question was raised as to who should have " She calf.skin shoes," and another who should have "fine boots." For, be it known, that the fact was traditionally well and firmly established, that a boy must have attained a certain age and stature, before he could be advanced to the advantage of extra " Sunday shoes ;" and a still farther degree of advancement was necessary to entitle him to the benefit and behoof of "Sunday boots." To stand in this degree, in fact, it was necessary that there should be presented a decided growth of beard, and something of a manly size and figure. Inasmuch as aspirations toward this degree are strong, especially in a boy of larger growth, it naturally became an earnest question, who had attained thereto.
As "the boys" all had full confidence in father's good judgment, and especially in his authority, the decision of this question, after having been properly presented, was very properly and wisely left to him. This decision, if not always quite agreeable to the unsuccessful candidates, was intended for their good, and beyond doubt also truly conducive to this end. That parents have less authority now, and that the whims of children more prevail, we need not assert; but that the world is better on that account we are slow to believe. We fully agree, and cheerfully confess, that we are just as healthy and happy now as we would have been, had we been regarded as entitled to "Sunday shoes" much earlier. Still we would fain long remember the pleasure which came with that interesting event, when it was by proper authority declared and pronounced that to us should be awarded a cut from the calf-skin!
The "little shoemaker" was a character, lie abounded in cheerfulness and good nature; and hence, though he always conscientiously obeyed the orders of father, yet he had a warm side for "the boys," and knew how to sympathize with their little wishes and schemes of early ambition. Thus he often became their friendly advocate, and sought judiciously, by means of that wisdom which was his by virtue of his craft nnd business, to enlarge and advance father's ideas in relation to the consideration due to boys of some size. This he did, it is true, purely from the goodness of his heart; but he could not have been wiser if he had acted from policy; for it secured to him the unbounded love and confidence of all. Apples and chestnuts were not wanting in the boxes of his work bench; and an abundance of the finest maple for pegs was cheerfully provided for him. Even in mid-summer were his needs anticipated, when a good supply was cut and put to dry "for the little shoemaker." Love begets love—kindness calls forth kindness. This lesson we were hereby well taught, and we would fain remember it till the day of our death.
Let it not be thought that all the good and pleasant results of the little shoemaker's tarrying in the family have yet been told. Did he not furnish the boys with an abundance of wax-ends for " crackers" to whiplashes? Yea, enough did he furnish to each to last during the whole year. To please the boys, he even left them longer than he would otherwise have done. Moreover, without any injustice to father's calf-skin— at least so, with the full approbation of the boys, he persuaded himself to believe—he would make out to cut, from what would otherwise (perhaps ?) have been a remnant, a full length, three-plait whip-lash for each of the boys. This kindness and consideration of his was sure to bring an increased supply of apples and chestnuts to his work bench, while at every crack of the new whip the heart of every boy was fain to cry out: "Long live the little shoemaker!"
Much yet remains untold. Did he not in the same spirit of benevolence, and from the same remnants of the calf-skin cut covers for our new balls? Indeed, it was sometimes difficult to say which contributed most to fill our little hearts with gratitude, the kindness of mother who gave the stocking feet to uuravel for the ball, or the goodness of the little shoemaker who furnished the leather cover—yea, and put it neatly on, after his work for the day had been finished. Rejoice over your gains, ye politicians who have successfully sought for office! Your joy over your commission papers, with all the hope of spoils connected therewith, is neither so great nor so pure as was ours when we were able to sport the new whip and ball. To our ambition the President, with all his power of bestowment, was not so great nor so good as the little shoemaker! Joy is a matter regulated by taste; and some at least of our boyish pleasure lay in that direction, and well did the little man know how to humor it. He shall be remembered for this.
The good little shoemaker has long since gone to his rest. In his wanderings he has dropped at last into some rural grave-yard, where he rests in peace! As he was a christian, as well as a shoemaker, the resurrection power will find him there. He lived humbly and obscurely, but did he live in vain! This we shall see and know, when He who rewards those who are faithful in that which is least, even as those who are faithful in that which is greatest, shall appear to reckon with his stewards. The silent dew refreshes the earth even as the greater shower; and so, in like manner, he who unobtrusively fulfils his little round of duties in the quiet walks of life, as well as he who fills a wider range, will return with joy at the final call, and bring his sheaves with him. Many there are who, with greater talents, and in a higher position, are burying their talents or slumbering under their responsibilities, who would wish "in that day" to exchange positions with the little itinerant shoemaker.
THE DOUBLE PLOT.
Tiirer hungry travelers found a bag of gold:
He thought, T will poison the bread I buy,
But they too thought, when back his feet have hied,
They killed him, and, partaking of the bread,
O World! behold what ill thy goods have done;
Ir envy, like anger, did not born itself in its own flames, and consume and destroy those whom it possesses, before it can ruin others it designs to injure, it would set the whole world on fire, and leave the most excellent persons the most miserable. And since it keeps all sorts of company, and wriggles itself into the liking of the most contrary natures and dispositions, and _\et carries so much poison and venom with it, that it alienates the affections from heaven, and raises rebellion against God himself, it is worth our utmost care to watch it in all its disguises and approaches, that we may discover it in its first entrance, and expel it before it procures a shelter or retiring place to lodge and conceal itself.
Of all the passions, love and envy are those only which have been observed to have the power of fascination—both have veheme: t desires; they encourage imaginary suggestions, and readily give diicitio;) and lustre to the eye, especially in the presence of their objects. These points, if any, conduce to fascination. In reference to the last, it may be remarked that envy is called in scripture, an evil eye, and that the unfavorable influences of the stars, are termed by astrologers, evil aspects; which would seem to imply a recognition in the act of envy, of au irradiation from the eye of malign effect. Some, indeed, have been so curious as to note, that the time when the force of an envious eye most injures, is when it beholds the envied person in glory or triumph ; which gives an edge to envy, besides bringing forth the spirits of the party and exposing them as if to meet the blow. But leaving these matters of curiosity, though not unworthy of reflection, we will consider who are apt to envy others ; who are most liable to be envied ; and the difference between public and private envy.
The truest mark, says La Rochefoucauld, of being born with great qualities, is being born without envy. A man without virtue always envies virtue in others. Men's minds will live upon their own good or the misfortune of others ; he who has no hope to emulate another's virtue, will seek to attain his level by depressing his fortune.
A busy and inquisitive man is commonly envious ; for such curiosity is not apt to be for any concern about his own estate, so much as for a kind of amusement iu prying into the affairs of others. One who minds his own business, is not likely to find much matter for envy; for envy is a gadding passion, walks the streets, and remains not at home. Non est curiosus, quin idem sit malevolus. Men of noble birth are observed to be envious of new men when they rise ; the distance being altered, is like an occular illusion, making it appear that as others advance they themselves recede. Deformed persons, ennuchs, old men and bastards, are envious. He that cannot possibly improve his own condition, will strive to impair others. It is, indeed, an exception when these defects befal a very brave and heroieal nature, resolving to make his deficiency a source of honor, causing it to be said: "Behold what a latne or a blind man has done," as if it were a miracle. Such was the case of Narses the ennuch, and of Agesilaras and Tamerlane, who were lame men.
The same disposition is found in men who rise after calamities and misfortunes; for they are as men who have quarreled with the times, and regard other men's sufferings as a redemption of their own. They who are fond of excelling in too many matters, out of levity and vain glory, are ever envious. Their disappointment is inevitable, it being impossible that many in some of those things should not surpass them. Such was the character of the Emperor Adrian, who mortally envied poets, painters, and artificers in their works in which he desired to excel. Lastly, near relatives, companions iu office, and those who have been bred together, are more apt to envy their equals when elevated ; for this upbraids their own fortune, points at them as it were scornfully; comes frequently into their remembrance as well as into the observation and remark of others: and envy ever redoubles from speech and report Cain's envy was the less excusable and more malignant towards his brother Abel, because when the sacrifice of the latter was better accepted, there was nobody to look on.
Concerning those that are more or less subject to envy : First, persons of pre-eminent merit, when advanced, are less envied, their good fortune being apparently but their due. No man envies the payment of a debt; it is deemed rather a just reward and liberality. Again, envy is always joined with self-comparison ; and where there is no comparison there can be no envy. Therefore, kings are only envied by kings. Nevertheless, it is to be observed, that the unworthy are most envied, at first, and afterwards recover from it better; whereas, persons of worth and merit are most envied when their good fortune is of long continuance; for their virt ue, though it be the same, has not the same lustre, because new men arise to darken it.
Persons of distinguished ancestry are less envied in their preferments; it seems but right done to their birth : besides, not much appears to be added to their fortune ; and envy is like the sun-beams, which beat hotter upon a bank or acclivity than upon a flat. For the same reason those itiat are advanced by degrees, are less envied than they who rise suddenly and per solium. Those whose honors involve great labors, cares or perils, are loss subject to envy, for men think they earn their honors hardly and sometimes pity them; and pity ever heals envy; wherefore, you shall observe, that the mure deep and sober sort of politic persons in their greatness, arc ever bemoaning what a life they lead, chanting a quanta j alimur; not that thoy find it so, but only to abate the edge of envy. But this is to be understood of business that is imposed, not such as is voluntarily assumed; for nothing increases envy more than an unnecessary and ambitious engrossing of business; and nothing sooner extinguishes envy, than for a great person to preserve all subordinate officers in their full rights and privileges of their places; by which he raises so many screens between himself and envy.
Above all, those are most anigect to envy who carry the greatness of their fortune in an insolent and proud manner, being never satisfied but while they are showing their magnificence, either by outward pomp or by