children without any help at all from the parish. This noble spirited woman had, fortunately, a benevolent landlord to deal with. He told her she should continue his tenant and hold the land, rent free for the first year. At the same time he gave private directions to his receiver, not to call upon her afterwards, thinking that even with that indulgence it would be a difficult undertaking to bring up so large a family. But this further liberality was unnecessary. By her high-principled exertions she set the example to her children of patient and unremitting toil, and she had in return from them every assistance which their age and strength enabled them to render.
One evening it happened that the lonely woman who had formerly been their only labourer, found her way to their yet cheerful and happy home. The day's labour was over, and they had gathered round the tea-table. Their mother was the only privileged one who was allowed the luxury of tea; the rest having respectable bowls of milk and bread. Toil and sorrow had already added many furrows to Mrs. Austin's open and honest brow, but there was a calmness and repose upon it which struck the other, who had never known a moment's rest since her sorrow, nor ever sought to check its selfish indulgence. She had made it her thought by day and her dream by night; and from suffering her mind to dwell on her loss incessantly, she had nearly brought herself to a state of phrenzy. Her wild eye was fixed upon Mrs. Austin, who sat surrounded by her children, the most admirable spectacle that humanity can afford.
It would require the pen of Sir Walter Scott to draw the gradual moral influence which this living picture of piety, patience, and fortitude exercised over the diseased mind of the sufferer, whose calamity, though immeasurably the least, was immeasurably the most to be pitied. Her admiration for them all knew no bounds. She entreated to be allowed to work with them, for them; to be admitted, on any terms, into so blessed a community. She promised that her labour should prevent her being a burden to them; and that Mrs. Austin would find she was of use to the younger part of her family, as well as in the most humble offices.
Mrs. Austin felt that oven were it injurious to her interests, she could not as a Christian reject the prayer of the poor woman; and that her continuing amongst them afforded the only chance of arousing her from the melancholy state into which she had fallen. It is needless to add that the result was entirely successful, and that she gradually assimilated herself to the character of those she so deeply reverenced and loved. Mrs. Austin had the satisfaction of finding that her Christian act proved beneficial, as a temporal measure, for the poor dependant was of the greatest service to them in many ways; and that the introduction into the establishment of a second person of mature age was a material convenience.
The rent was forthcoming with perfect regularity after the year of grace. They held the land till eight of the ten children were placed in service; and Mrs. Austin then resigned it to take the employment of a nurse, which enabled her to provide for the remaining two during the short time they required support; and this she found a more suitable employment for her declining years. Had the five children been sent to the Union, they would have cost the parish hardly less than 70l. a year; and the widow, had she been deprived of the land, would have been compelled, with the remaining five, to have had recourse also to parochial relief.
I must not forget to add, that the devoted servant continued her labours until they were transferred to a small farmer who had married one of Mrs. Austin's daughters; and that, treated with care and kindness, she died at an advanced age, having nursed her young mistress's children, and been the delight and comfort of many a youthful and merry heart. H. E.
COST OF COTTAGES.
I am requested, by persons anxious to improve the abodes of the labouring-class, to explain the particulars of such a cottage as can be built in Westmoreland for 60l. I have therefore obtained from the experienced builder whom I quoted before—Mr. Arthur Jackson—a plan and estimate of the cottage he would build on receiving such an order.
By the plan it will be seen that there is a fair-sized front-room, a kitchen, and two bed-rooms above, all having fire-places, by the chimney running up the middle of the house. The walls are two feet thick, the windows large, and the ventilation ample. There is, however, no out-door accommodation; and a pump and sink cannot be afforded for the money. The items of cost are these, "walling," comprehending the entire building, and paving, and all the stones of the walls:
Carpenters work, which includes the entire fitting up of the interior
While giving these particulars, and showing that separate lodging-rooms can be provided for a rent of 3l. 10s., I must explain that I do not recommend this kind of cottage as anything especially good in itself. If I built a dwelling of four rooms, I should certainly afford the requisite out-door accommodation and a proper water-supply at home. When the women have to go up the hill for a tubful of water, or with pails to some distant