Puslapio vaizdai
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

together ; and pleasant was it to have time to contem- | valuables there," and he pointed with his riding whip to plate the old manor-houses, the yet older churches, and wards the mail. have time to hear the stories of the ghosts that haunted “ And little should I like to meet them," answered the one, or the saints who were believed to watch over the Luke Willingham, smiling ; "but a good half hour's ride other ;-above all, right pleasant often were the compa- will bring us into Newport, and methinks there is no nions who shared the toils of the way, and many an im- cause for fear.” portant friendship was, in former times, the result of an “You are bound to London, I suppose," said the accidental rencontre on the same road.

gentleman, carelessly. This is, certainly, the bright side of the view, and we Yes, good Sir, and I would I might reach there tothink the bright predominated; but, as

night; but Heaven forfend that I should not reach the “Every white must have its blacke,

Silver Unicorn by to-morrow at noon.”
And every swete its soure,"

You are the young man, then, that came down to 80, what with bad roads, or lame horses, or wrong direc- Northampton, in company with worthy Master Armisted, tions, the poor traveller sometimes came, in the midst of the draper, three days ago, are you not ?"' said the gentlehis journey to a stand-still ; while, as to companions, he man. sometimes met with “clerks of St. Nicholas," instead of

The same, good Sir," replied Luke, “and I ought honest men and good Christians, who gave him, at least, to have returned with him, only he is a day beyond his some cause for thankfulness, inasmuch as they had spared time.” his life, although they had relieved him of his money. “And yet, would it not have been better to have

It was the fate of the hero of our story to prove both waited for him? There is he, and his man Ralph, and the sweets and the sours of the mode of travelling first ; his 'prentice Gilbert, and you are quite alone, and with and as worthy Mr. Fleming, whose father knew him well, this ;” and the gentleman carelessly touched the mail set down the whole account in his commonplace book, that was strapped on Luke's saddle. among divers anecdotes related “by a most credible

Why, truly, good Sir,” said he, “it is perhaps foolgentlewoman," and reminiscences of the days of the Par- hardy, but what could I do? I have solemnly promised liament, told me by mine highly honoured father," or Master Forster--and he hath been a good master to me by “worthy Master Ashford, who dyed in 1696-7, aged to be home by to-morrow noon, and never while he fourscore,” we will take the liberty of copying it—in our liveth, by God's grace, will Luke Willingham break his own words, however, as the good old gentleman occasion-word.” ally is rather prosy-for the benefit of our readers. “Well said, my gallant London 'prentice," said the

Pleasantly, on his good roan steed, although alone, and gentleman, smiling ; "and do you serve good Master the sun was setting, trotted young Luke Willingham Forster of Ludgate, over against Martin Church? Though along a bye-road that led to Newport Pagnel. He was I know him not, I well know his workmanship, for he wrapped in a large travelling cloak, fastened round the made Sir William Houghton's tall standing cup and cover waist by a broad leathern band, in which were two pistols ; -a beautiful cup.” and the reason that these were so conspicuous might pro- Luke Willingham's eyes sparkled at the praises bobably have been found in the contents of the small leathern stowed on the master who had been as a father to him. mail which was carefully strapped before him on the Ye say well, Sir ; for few, I trow, can equal my good saddle. He was a fine open-countenanced young man, and master in working both gold and silver. I would ye had as onward he went, he beguiled the way by singing, not seen the gold pouncet-box I took to Sir William Houghone of the scoffing cavalier ballads—for Luke Willing- ton.” ham's cap was decked with a large bow of dark blue Ay, old Sir William spareth no cost in such things," ribbon, the badge of the Parliament—but a sober rhyme, said the gentleman, laughing. “Well, what say ye to that prophesied the success of the good cause, and eulo- his gold chain, that precious relic always worn, on Sungised the stedfast bravery of the Parliament soldiers ; and, days and high days, over his cut velvet gown? Soothly, intent on his song, two horsemen approached almost be- had Sir Charles Lucas's troops reached Houghton Pleaside him, ere he was aware of their coming. The one saunce, as they intended, that chain, I'll warrant me, had was a young gentleman, at least so the fineness of his been carried to Oxford.” cloak and the rich lace of his band seemed to prove ; the “ And it would have broken the poor old gentleman's other, who followed closely, seemed the servant with his heart,” replied Luke Willingham. It is, indeed, a master's mail and cloak-bag.

beautiful chain, though very ancient, and I marvel net he The gentleman bowed courteously to Luke.

- We seem

sets such store by it." quite alone here," said he, in a pleasant voice ; “but I "'Twas said it had been broken, and 'twas thought a trust the road is safe."

bad omen; but we won the day out yonder, so it boded “More safe than two months ago," replied Luke Wil- no ill to the good cause." lingham, laughing, “thanks to Colonel Cromwell and his ·0, no, and it will soon be mended and re-burnished; gallant Ironsides. In truth, worthy Sir, when I last for Sir William must have it back against his daughter's came this road, I was fain to wait for Cornet Winslow wedding. Heaven grant I reach London safely." and his company, for fear of Sir Charles Lucas and his “Yea! my 'prentice bold; what, is Sir William's pre

cious chain there ?” said the gentleman, again touching “There's little fear of them now, truly,” said the the mail with his riding whip. gentleman ; “ but still, I trust we shall get to Newport Poor Luke hesitated, and looked anxiously at his ques. before nightfall. I should be loath to meet any to say tioner. He had been so completely thrown off his guard by stand and deliver,' seeing that my servant hath some the familiar courtesy of his companion, that ere he wns


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

aware he had acknowledged what had been urged upon “Good Sir, do you think you know them?” cried him as of the utmost importance to conceal.

Luke earnestly. “O ! if you could but recover me that “Why, my gallant ’prentice, dost think I am a knight precious chain, what amends could I, or my good master, of the road, or what is doubtless worse, some of Sir or poor Grace,” he added falteringly, ever make you." Charles Lucas's troopers, who, in spite of the round-heads, “ And who is Grace ?” said the gentleman kindly. are prowling about for plunder ?" said the gentleman in “ Good Master Forster's daughter,'' said Luke hesibis blandest tone.

tatingly, " but 0 ! how shall I ever meet her again, after "Surely not, good Sir, surely not ;" cried Luke Wil- this sad loss !" lingham.

The gentleman was evidently interested in the young A loud laugh burst from the servant, who, coming close man's story, and touched with his deep sorrow. He adbehind, tightly seized the poor young man's arms, while vised him to remount his horse, and bade his servant lead the gentleman deliberately proceeded to unfasten the him gently toward a farm house, a short distance down mail. • Sir William will find the omen true, dearly the lane the two cavaliers had gone. “ Farewell,” said beloved," said he. “You know it is nothing new for he, " and keep your heart up, perchance all may yet be the saints to fall into tribulation, or to meet with wolves in well.” sheep's clothing,"

Ere long, Luke arrived at the farm house, and was "Wolves in sheep's clothing, indeed !” cried Luke led gently in by the servant and the farmer. Willingham, with a violent effort disengaging one of his “ And who is he ?” cried the farmer, recognising the arms, and seizing the pistol at his belt, but the pretended Parliamentary colours on poor Luke's cap,—"a prisoner ? gentleman was armed as well as be.

Methought all such doings were put a stop to, for a Peace, dearly beloved," said he, loudly laughing, month at least. More's the pity.” " and take joyfully the spoiling of your goods, as pre- He is no prisoner, but one whom my worshipful cious Master Case or Dr. Cornelius Burgess would say. master desires you to treat with all kindness," said the Nay, no resistance, for the chain is doomed, ay! doomed serving-man sharply; “ but hath Major Hobart been seen to become the property of his sacred Majesty ; better about here this evening ?”! fitted, I trow, for him, than for a canting, psalm-singing, Ay, marry hath hehe passed by here not a half old, round-head knight.”

hour since, laughing, bless his merry heart, and singing It was in vain that Luke Willingham resisted to the • round-headed rascals go dig at the top of his voice. It utmost, and called loudly for aid ; the precious box did my old heart good to hear him.” was wrested from him ; and with a violent blow on his “ Any one with him ?'' right arm, from the short carabine which the pretended “ A taller one than he, on a grey horse. They were gentleman drew from under his cloak, they galloped off, going down yonder, to the old place, I'll warrant.” loudly laughing, down a narrow lane.

“ Then thither we must go, so farewell goodman. But Exhausted by the struggle, overwhelmed, too, by the stop-I may as well take your pistols, young man, for

you suddenness and greatness of his loss, poor Luke Willing- cannot use them, and I may.” The servant did so, and ham sat motionless ; nor had he wholly recovered his hastily mounting Luke's horse, rode off. consciousness when a friendly hand took the bridle-rein, You've fallen in with good luck, youngster, for such and, gently leading him toward a bank by the road-side, a worshipful gentleman to bid me treat you with all kindcarefully assisted him to dismount.

ness, ” said the farmer surlily, as he placed refreshment "Thanks, kind friend,” murmured Luke faintly ; “if before his guest. “ What, hast been wounded on the I have fallen among thieves, I have also met with the highway?" good Samaritan."

“ Robbed and wounded,” replied Luke Willingham, “Then let me, like him, see you to a place of safety," turning from the proffered refreshment;“ but 0! that presaid a kind voice, “ and then you shall tell me how you cious gold chain." were robbed, and what they have taken."

“ Gold chain ?" repeated the farmer, looking earnestly “0, good Sir-of what is more valuable than aught at his guest. “ Is it old Sir William Houghton's?”' beside ! Sir William Houghton's precious gold chain, “ Alas! it is," said Luke, bitterly. and the parcel-gilt porringers. But, 0! that chain, “ Saints be praised,” cried the farmer, rubbing his which I promised Sir William but this morning that I hands, “ Major Hobart hath won his wager. Last week would never lose, save with my life.”

he swore by all the saints, and his sacred Majesty to boot, " And who, think you, were the robbers ; and how that the ranting old round-head's chain should never get many ?"

safe to London, and he hath won! What kind of a man. “0, kind Sir, only two wicked, raging, cavaliers ! | stopped you ?” Good Sir, I feel quite strong again. Will you aid me to “ One who seemed like a gentleman, and spoke like pursue them? They went over yonder; and there are one,” said Luke, angrily. but two."

" Ay, 'twas he-why, he could have talked to you in “My poor young man, you are sorely wounded,” said your own jargon for an hour together. Well, success to the kind friend, whom Luke now perceived to be a mid-good Major Hobart : for I can tell you, your chain will dle-aged gentleman, “and all unfit to pursue robbers. be at Oxford ere to-morrow morning, as a present to our Describe them to me, and perchance we may find them out." good king—ha! ha!”

Luke Willingham, with many lamentations over his “And who was the gentleman who sent me hither ?!!, hard fortune, did so, and the gentleman, turning to his said Luke, looking anxiously round--for he was feeble, serving man who had just ridden up, said angrily, "I and without means of defence, and evidently under the feared so; ay, they are at their usual work again.", roof of a bitter political opponent.

[ocr errors]

" Aha! one who is no favourite with your crew, I trow. “ Is this your property, young man ?" said Sir MarmaHast ever heard of Sir Marmaduke Sherrington, of Sher- duke, as the servant placed the mail on the table. rington Manor house over yonder?'

“ It is, worshipful Sir.” Yes ; Luke had indeed heard of him, for he was viewed “ Look over the contents then, and see that nothing is as one of the most powerful supporters of the royalist party missing." in all the country round; and he, too, of all the neigh- With a trembling hand, Luke Willingham unfastened bouring gentry who held the same views, was the one the straps, and took out the precious contents--the two most dreaded by Sir William Houghton, who, old and parcel-gilt porringers, the broken pestel spoons, the gold feeble, felt, that when the contest again broke out, little pouncet-box, still smelling of musk and ambergris, and chance would he have against a neighbour, not only equal in its curious old shagreen case, the highly-prized gold in wealth and tenantry, but in the prime of life, and al- chain. “ All is safe, worshipful Sir,” said Luke, looking ready distinguished as a gallant soldier.

up in Sir Marmaduke's face with intense anxiety, and The farmer, whose obtuse faculties were probably tremblingly awaiting the reply. sharpened by political and religious enmity, seemed to Then take them, my poor young man,” said the read the young man's thoughts. “Ay,' said he, chuck- knight kindly. “ Heaven forbid that we should rob deling, Sir Marmaduke will keep you safe, I'll warrant.” fenceless travellers on the highway. Make ready, and my “ Why should he ?'' said Luke.

servant shall see you safe into Newport. Go," continued “ Why should he ?” cried the farmer; "why, if you he, turning to the trooper, "and tell Major Hobart that come from London you can, mayhap, tell the council at I am satisfied ; but for his speech to me he must answer Oxford somewhat of what your devilish crew mean to set another day." about next. 'Twas not out of love to yout, I promise “ That will he, worshipful Sir," said the chief trooper ; you, that Sir Marmaduke sent you here. But you must " but if such strict hand is to be kept over loyal gentletake it for your pains, youngster, as a judgment, as Dr. men, we may be fain to join Colonel Cromwell's troops, Swillwell saith, on those who despise holy mother Church, and hear sermons by the hour-glass, and pay for all that and follow after canting and psalm-singing."

we have." " But he treated me most kindly, and told me he “ As you list,” replied Sir Marmaduke sternly ; " but would himself seek after the robbers,” said Luke, rather be assured of this, that while I continue in this county, expressing his thoughts aloud, than intending a reply. all attempts to spoil peaceable travellers, whether made

“Why! did he ?" said the farmer. “Well, that passes by the meanest trooper, or by Sir Charles Lucas himself, my understanding; and yet I was always mortal 'cute at will I put down.” finding out things. Sir Marmaduke is a gentleman to The troopers departed, muttering threats, and followed keep his word, as all the country round knows; and he to the gate by the astonished farmer, while Luke Willing. isn't given to tricks and cunning ways, that make a man ham, with gayful heart, carefully re-fastened his restored laugh till his sides ache, like Major Hobart. But he's mail, and prepared to depart. Worshipful Sir," said Church and King to the back bone -ay, Church and he and his voice faltered, and his eyes filled with tears King for ever!" The farmer could not do less than _"what can I say? Words, indeed, are easy ; but I empty the tankard, which had stood untasted by his would I could show my gratitude in somewhat more subguest, to this toast ; and having already done the same stantial than mere words. You have been more than the many times in the course of the day, the malt produced good Samaritan to me, albeit a Cavalier. Would I could its usual effect, and he sank in his great wicker chair, make you a fitting return !" still grunting in disturbed slumber these potent words. “Nay, thank me not, young man, for å mere act of

An anxious hour did Luke Willingham pass. Should justice," replied Sir Marmaduke ; “ 'tis well if I have he attempt to escape? The high road was not far off, convinced you that a Cavalier is not always a wolf in and once upon that he should be safe. But then, there sheep's clothing. Farewell.” were voices in the adjoining room—the farm-servants “O worthy Sir," said Luke Willingham, and his voice were doubtless there, and he was utterly unarmed. Even faltered with deep emotion, “ that I might also give you his horse had been carried off, and he was still too weak proof that a Puritan is no canting knaye. Good Sir, God to walk far. And yet, if he stayed, what were Sir Mar- alone knows how our contest may end; but, should maduke's intentions towards him? Was he indeed the trouble or danger happen-as who knows what is before good Samaritan he appeared to be, or the fierce and bitter us ?-even to you, forget not, I pray you, the Silver UniCavalier, furious at the late defeat of the royalist force, corn, near Ludgate, nor the name of Luke Willingham.” and reckless of all but the success of the royal cause? In safety, with his precious consignment, and by the 0! how long the time seemed; and how did he start at appointed time, did Luke Willingham return to his maseach lightest sound.

ter's house, where he told, to a wondering auditory, the At length the tramp of approaching horsemen was tale of his attack and deliverance. heard. Yes, of more than two; and while the farmer “We must show our sense of that honou rable gentlehastily started up, still rubbing his eyes, and went out to man's kindness," said Master Forster, “by sending him meet them, poor Luke's anxiety became agony.

forthwith some token of our gratitude." In they came. Sir Marmaduke, his servant bearing There was much consultation as to what this token the very mail—how did Luke's heart beat at the sight of should be. At length a thumb-ring, with an emerald set it-and three or four of Sir Charles Lucas's troops- therein—the emerald being considered to betoken sincewell did he know the red coat faced with yellow, and the rity and kindness-was made ; and when Luke, a few scarlet plume-while, casting an exulting look towards his weeks after, but in company with Cornet Winslow, and guest, the old farmer brought up the rear.

some dozen of his Ironsides, set off on his journey to take


hack to Sir William Houghton his plate, and his precious ter had compelled the Cavaliers to disband their regiments, ebain, he himself, on his return, went to Sherrington his first thought was that some one of these might be Labor-house, to offer his token of acknowledgment. waiting an opportunity to rob the shop; he, therefore,

The account which he there heard, however, greatly cautiously approached nearer the door. distressed him. Sir Marmaduke had been called out by Still the man seemed to linger-perhaps unable to go Major Hobart, and had been severely wounded by him-on-for he looked worn and feeble ; and as he drew the indeed so severely, that he could not be seen. Luke, threadbare cloak more closely round him as the wind therefore, was enforced to leave the ring with the stew- blew keenly up Ludgate Hill, the long, slender finger of ari, praying him to deliver it into the knight's own a hand that had evidently never been occupied in labour, Laad.

became visible. “Poor fellow," said Luke Willingham, Again the war broke out in that quarter, and all com- “he is, doubtless, some ruined Cavalier.” Ile drew out munication between the contending parties was stayed. a bright shilling, and putting it into the hand of his little Little farther information could Luke therefore receive ; girl, he bade her carry it to the poor man, and return w the little which he obtained, through his friend the immediately. estbier, still farther distressed him. Strange stories re- Pleased with her errand, little Grace bounded to the specting Sir Marmaduke's conduct in the matter of the door, and touched the stranger's hand with the coin. Leaden 'prentice had been spread abroad—even that he " Father sends you this, poor man," said she. had not been true to his principles, and, therefore, for a The stranger started. “Is that your father yonder, vre bribe, had taken his part. So, indignant at such little maiden ?”' said he. usehoods, the worthy knight had gone to Oxford, to de- " Yes; but he hath sent you this, poor man-this!" zand an inquiry before the king himself. Greatly did repeated little Grace, holding up the bright new shilling, Luke grieve at this, and anxiously did he make inquiry. and marvelling the stranger did not immediately take it. At length it was said that Sir Marmaduke Sherrington " Then give this to him, my little maiden," said he ; had returned to Sherrington manor-house, and that he “but be sure and give it only into his hands.” Tas actively engaged in raising a troop of horse. This The little girl bounded in, breathless with delight and 728 the last intelligence he ever obtained, and years wonder. “Look, father, look at this beautiful ring which passed away, but nothing could he learn of his benefactor. the poor man hath sent you."

Scarcely a glance did Luke Willingham cast on the More than eight years passed away--eventful years. ring, for well did he know who stood a houseless, perThe battle of Naseby had crushed the hopes of the King ; chance a penniless, wanderer before his door. rozeding events completed his overthrow ; the very welcome, good Sir," cried he, as he almost dragged the

me of Monarch was abolished, and the final efforts of stranger in. “Thank God that I can, in some small "te royalists to place the son on that throne from whence measure, repay your great kindness to me!" e father had been driven were paralysed by that And Sir Marmaduke came in ; and he laid aside his

crowning mercy,” the battle of Worcester. And now, threadbare cloak, and sat down at Luke Willingham's zde the protection of him, whose sword had given peace comfortable fireside, in the great arm-chair that Master

the land, after ten years' conflict, that Monarch by Forster used to occupy. And joyfully did Luke's pretty sture's sovereignty, that "ruler by God's grace, and wife busy herself to prepare with her own hands a possit for ne might of his own soul,” trade had revived, commerce the cold and weary wanderer ; while Luke brought out the u rapidly extending, and London, once more, as in the best standing silver cup, and a flask of the choicest Canary; dips of her Plantagenets, feasted her wealthy traders and and a pleasant evening after his dangers and wanderings het merchant princes.

did Sir Marmaduke Sherrington spend, as seated in the And pleasant and prosperous had these eventful years great arm-chair, with the younger Luke Willingham on barn to Luke Willingham. He had, after the lau- his knee, and little Grace standing close beside, her bright asile custom of many a worthy 'prentice, married his blue eyes upturned wonderingly in his face, he listened master's daughter, pretty Grace Forster, and had been to the story of Luke's success in his trade. saken into partnership by his master. And now, wearied Less fortunate had been the lot of the worthy knight. *ith the gains of business, as well as its cares, Master With devotion worthy a far better cause, he had followed Parster had retired to “a garden house”—that coveted the fortunes of the Stuarts, even to the battle of Worcespossession in those days of the retired citizen--out by ter. In this last contest he had been wounded, and Vansfields; and the Silver Unicorn, which for so many had been nursed by some royalists, from whom, on his reFears had swung before the goldsmith's door, now discovery, he learned that all who had taken part in it were ered the name of Luke Willingham.

under sentence of outlawry. On quitting them, he deterIt was before this sign that a meanly dressed man, mined to make his way to London, justly considering wrapt in a threadbare cloak, stopped one bitter Novem- that he would be safer there, than while wandering about wr afternoon, just as the twilight was coming on, and the country ; and after a long and weary journey, he arte streets were beginning to be deserted by the afternoon rived just in time to learn that some cavalier friends had prosengers. Master Willingham, for so he was now called, chartered a small vessel, ostensibly with hardware for was standing beside the counter, keeping shop in the Holland, but with the intention of running her to Dunkirk, absence of his apprentices, and playing with his little girl. that they might join the exiled King. His attention was soon attracted by this stranger, who, As Sir Marmaduke was evidently most anxious to leave cantigasiy, but evidently with much anxiety, kept peeping England—although he soon found that the story of the outinto the shop. As there were many suspicious persons, lawry of him and his companions had no foundation--Luke adeed strong thieves, about, since the battle of Worces. Willinghamu laboured anxiously to provide his benefactor

with every comfort for his voyage, and with whatever | His name, therefore, was known; and, with anxious might be useful to him during his sojourn in France. heart, thither he proceeded, determined to solicit an inProvidence, however, had ordered otherwise ; for, on the terview and prefer his petition. very day previous to the vessel's sailing, poor Sir Marma- The Lord General received Luke Willingham kindly; duke took to his bed. He was seized with a violent ague and he forthwith detailed the whole story of his advent ures fit, brought on, doubtless, by the privations he had under- on that eventful night, and concluded by earnestly praying gone, and for many long weeks did he linger between life that the Cavalier Knight might be allowed to leave the and death.

country. There was much in this strife of courtesy and It was during this time that Mistress Willingham, who, kindness that appealed powerfully to the truly English during his whole illness, nursed him, as though he had heart of that great man. The prayer was granted, and been her father, perceived that something was on his mind. joyfully did Luke Willingham return home. She observed, also, how anxious he was about that thread- The joy of Sir Marmaduke Sherrington, now that his bare cloak; even at the first of his illness, carrying it up wish was obtained, was, however, strangely mingled with to his chamber with him, and placing it carefully under sorrow. He seemed under great anxiety of mind ; but his pillow. This, at first, scarcely excited surprise ; for not until the evening before his departure did he tell the she thought that perhaps it had been given him by the cause. It was then that, calling Luke Willingham to his King, or that it had been worn by him, and among the chamber, he told him that he had been intrusted with a Cavaliers, she well knew that a garment, thus honoured, certain box, under a solemn promise to convey it into the acquired from thenceforth a character almost of sacredness. hands of one who was now in France. “This, my kind But during that period of his illness, when Sir Marma- friend, I could easily have done, but for my sad illness," duke's mind wandered, it then became evident that some- said he ; “but now, with the strict search that will be what-perhaps papers, perhaps valuables—was concealed made, both of my luggage and person, all attempt to conin that cloak, and that there rested a solemn responsibility vey it away would be impossible." on the poor Cavalier's mind, to convey it to its appointed It would so indeed, for the box, though small, was destination. Happily for the unconscious sufferer, Luke's deep; and readily did Luke Willingham now perceive the wife respected the secret of her guest; and as, when he reason why Sir Marmaduke kept such unceasing watch slowly recovered his senses, he made no allusion to it, over his threadbare cloak. “Good Sir," replied he, “I Grace Willingham took heed never even to hint her suspi- would willingly take charge of it-only, by the same faith cions.

which I have shown toward yourself, I am pledged to the Spring had now advanced, and with returning health cause of the Commonwealth." Sir Marmaduke Sherrington expressed his earnest wishes Sir Marmaduke smiled sadly. “Heaven forbid I should to reach France. There were, however, now many dif- ask you,” said he ; " but jewels, not papers, are here ficulties in the way, which had not before existed. enclosed—jewels of great value; and, as such, most The Parliament had just declared war against Hol- anxious am I to secure them.” land, no vessels could therefore be chartered for a He broke the seal that secured the red ribbon whereDutch port; besides, so strict a search was made at each with the box was tied, and drew forth what seemed pars English port, in consequence of the fresh plots of the Ca- of an ornament of large diamonds. valiers, that it was scarcely possible for any one of their · Nay, good Sir,” interrupted Luke Willingham, “it number to leave England. Still, as summer drew nigh, needs not that I should see them, seeing that I have the anxieties of Sir Marmaduko increased, and willingly, nought to do save to keep them safely. Close the box, even at the price of half his living, would Luke Willing therefore, I pray you; seal it with your own seal, and ham hare aided his benefactor. No effort did he leave should ten, twenty, thirty years pass away, it shall still untried. He applied to all the city friends who could be safely kept until you yourself come, or send a trusty assist him ; he sought interviews with those members of messenger to reclaim it.” the Council who seemed less bitter against the royalist Sir Marmaduke did as his kind friend advised him. He party; he even caused inquiry to be made of Secretary fastened the red ribbon three times round the box, and Thurloe, whether a Cavalier gentleman, on giving good sealed it at each end with the figure of a dolphin, which security, might be allowed to leave the kingdom ; but, was the family crest. “ I will send this same seal, Sir," when the name of Sir Marmaduke Sherrington was given, said he, “should I not be able to return in time; and a decided negative was immediately returned.

now farewell, my kind friend,'' continued he; "heaven But Luke Willingham was still determined to persevere, grant we may ere long meet again.” although many of his friends urged him to desist ; nor did Sir Marmaduke set forth on his voyage, followed by he even relax his efforts when sent for by Secretary Thur- the good wishes and prayers of the family with whom be loe, and rebuked for his exertions on behalf of a malig- had so long sojourned, and arrived safely in France. nant, who, but for Luke Willingham's well-known prin- Continued prosperity, during the rule of the Protector, ciples, would have been, ere now, committed to prison. followed Luke Willingham. Ilis exertions in behalf o Nothing, however, could turn the silversmith from his his friend had given him additional favour in the eyes o purpose ; and, as the last resource, he determined to that great man, and ere long the Silver Unicorn, re appeal to that great man who, though crownless, and as silvered on the occasion, supported with his fore feet to yet undignified with the proud title of "Lord Protector arms of the Commonwealth, while "silversmith to the of the Commonwealth of England,” was yet more than Lord Protector” was inscribed below. In a good old

as. king. The fame of Luke Willingham, as a silversmith, Master Forster died, leaving the bulk of his fortune to t. had reached Whitehall, and he had been lately employed son-in-law, and Luke was pointed out by his neighbour to furnish some ornamental plate for the Lord General. as one of the most fortunate young men of their acquais

[ocr errors]
« AnkstesnisTęsti »