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    Chapter 40

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    Chapter 41
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    CHAPTER XL - OUT OF TUNE

    'I have no wrong, where I can claim no right,

    Naught ta'en me fro, where I have nothing had,

    Yet of my woe I cannot so be quite;

    Namely, since that another may he glad

    With that, that thus in sorrow makes me sad.'

    WYATT.

    Margaret had not expected much pleasure to herself from Mr.
    Bell's visit--she had only looked forward to it on her father's
    account, but when her godfather came, she at once fell into the
    most natural position of friendship in the world. He said she had
    no merit in being what she was, a girl so entirely after his own
    heart; it was an hereditary power which she had, to walk in and
    take possession of his regard; while she, in reply, gave him much
    credit for being so fresh and young under his Fellow's cap and
    gown.

    'Fresh and young in warmth and kindness, I mean. I'm afraid I
    must own, that I think your opinions are the oldest and mustiest
    I have met with this long time.'

    'Hear this daughter of yours, Hale Her residence in Milton has
    quite corrupted her. She's a democrat, a red republican, a member
    of the Peace Society, a socialist--'

    'Papa, it's all because I'm standing up for the progress of
    commerce. Mr. Bell would have had it keep still at exchanging
    wild-beast skins for acorns.'

    'No, no. I'd dig the ground and grow potatoes. And I'd shave the
    wild-beast skins and make the wool into broad cloth. Don't
    exaggerate, missy. But I'm tired of this bustle. Everybody
    rushing over everybody, in their hurry to get rich.'

    'It is not every one who can sit comfortably in a set of college
    rooms, and let his riches grow without any exertion of his own.
    No doubt there is many a man here who would be thankful if his
    property would increase as yours has done, without his taking any
    trouble about it,' said Mr. Hale.

    'I don't believe they would. It's the bustle and the struggle
    they like. As for sitting still, and learning from the past, or
    shaping out the future by faithful work done in a prophetic
    spirit--Why! Pooh! I don't believe there's a man in Milton who
    knows how to sit still; and it is a great art.'

    'Milton people, I suspect, think Oxford men don't know how to
    move. It would be a very good thing if they mixed a little more.'

    'It might be good for the Miltoners. Many things might be good
    for them which would be very disagreeable for other people.'

    'Are you not a Milton man yourself?' asked Margaret. 'I should
    have thought you would have been proud of your town.'

    'I confess, I don't see what there is to be proud of If you'll
    only come to Oxford, Margaret, I will show you a place to glory
    in.'

    'Well!' said Mr. Hale, 'Mr. Thornton is coming to drink tea with
    us to-night, and he is as proud of Milton as you of Oxford. You
    two must try and make each other a little more liberal-minded.'

    'I don't want to be more liberal-minded, thank you,' said Mr.
    Bell.

    'Is Mr. Thornton coming to tea, papa?' asked Margaret in a low
    voice.

    'Either to tea or soon after. He could not tell. He told us not
    to wait.'

    Mr. Thornton had determined that he would make no inquiry of his
    mother as to how far she had put her project into execution of
    speaking to Margaret about the impropriety of her conduct. He
    felt pretty sure that, if this interview took place, his mother's
    account of what passed at it would only annoy and chagrin him,
    though he would all the time be aware of the colouring which it
    received by passing through her mind. He shrank from hearing
    Margaret's very name mentioned; he, while he blamed her--while he
    was jealous of her--while he renounced her--he loved her sorely,
    in spite of himself. He dreamt of her; he dreamt she came dancing
    towards him with outspread arms, and with a lightness and gaiety
    which made him loathe her, even while it allured him. But the
    impression of this figure of Margaret--with all Margaret's
    character taken out of it, as completely as if some evil spirit
    had got possession of her form--was so deeply stamped upon his
    imagination, that when he wakened he felt hardly able to separate
    the Una from the Duessa; and the dislike he had to the latter
    seemed to envelope and disfigure the former Yet he was too proud
    to acknowledge his weakness by avoiding the sight of her. He
    would neither seek an opportunity of being in her company nor
    avoid it. To convince himself of his power of self-control, he
    lingered over every piece of business this afternoon; he forced
    every movement into unnatural slowness and deliberation; and it
    was consequently past eight o'clock before he reached Mr. Hale's.
    Then there were business arrangements to be transacted in the
    study with Mr. Bell; and the latter kept on, sitting over the
    fire, and talking wearily, long after all business was
    transacted, and when they might just as well have gone upstairs.
    But Mr. Thornton would not say a word about moving their
    quarters; he chafed and chafed, and thought Mr. Bell a most prosy
    companion; while Mr. Bell returned the compliment in secret, by
    considering Mr. Thornton about as brusque and curt a fellow as he
    had ever met with, and terribly gone off both in intelligence and
    manner. At last, some slight noise in the room above suggested
    the desirableness of moving there. They found Margaret with a
    letter open before her, eagerly discussing its contents with her
    father. On the entrance of the gentlemen, it was immediately put
    aside; but Mr. Thornton's eager senses caught some few words of
    Mr. Hale's to Mr. Bell.

    'A letter from Henry Lennox. It makes Margaret very hopeful.'

    Mr. Bell nodded. Margaret was red as a rose when Mr. Thornton
    looked at her. He had the greatest mind in the world to get up
    and go out of the room that very instant, and never set foot in
    the house again.

    'We were thinking,' said Mr. Hale, 'that you and Mr. Thornton had
    taken Margaret's advice, and were each trying to convert the
    other, you were so long in the study.'

    'And you thought there would be nothing left of us but an
    opinion, like the Kilkenny cat's tail. Pray whose opinion did you
    think would have the most obstinate vitality?'

    Mr. Thornton had not a notion what they were talking about, and
    disdained to inquire. Mr. Hale politely enlightened him.

    'Mr. Thornton, we were accusing Mr. Bell this morning of a kind
    of Oxonian mediaeval bigotry against his native town; and
    we--Margaret, I believe--suggested that it would do him good to
    associate a little with Milton manufacturers.'

    'I beg your pardon. Margaret thought it would do the Milton
    manufacturers good to associate a little more with Oxford men.
    Now wasn't it so, Margaret?'

    'I believe I thought it would do both good to see a little more
    of the other,--I did not know it was my idea any more than
    papa's.'

    'And so you see, Mr. Thornton, we ought to have been improving
    each other down-stairs, instead of talking over vanished families
    of Smiths and Harrisons. However, I am willing to do my part now.
    I wonder when you Milton men intend to live. All your lives seem
    to be spent in gathering together the materials for life.'

    'By living, I suppose you mean enjoyment.'

    'Yes, enjoyment,--I don't specify of what, because I trust. we
    should both consider mere pleasure as very poor enjoyment.'

    'I would rather have the nature of the enjoyment defined.'

    'Well! enjoyment of leisure--enjoyment of the power and influence
    which money gives. You are all striving for money. What do you
    want it for?'

    Mr. Thornton was silent. Then he said, 'I really don't know. But
    money is not what ~I~ strive for.'

    'What then?'

    'It is a home question. I shall have to lay myself open to such a
    catechist, and I am not sure that I am prepared to do it.'

    'No!' said Mr. Hale; 'don't let us be personal in our catechism.
    You are neither of you representative men; you are each of you
    too individual for that.'

    'I am not sure whether to consider that as a compliment or not. I
    should like to be the representative of Oxford, with its beauty
    and its learning, and its proud old history. What do you say,
    Margaret; ought I to be flattered?'

    'I don't know Oxford. But there is a difference between being the
    representative of a city and the representative man of its
    inhabitants.'

    'Very true, Miss Margaret. Now I remember, you were against me
    this morning, and were quite Miltonian and manufacturing in your
    preferences.' Margaret saw the quick glance of surprise that Mr.
    Thornton gave her, and she was annoyed at the construction which
    he might put on this speech of Mr. Bell's. Mr. Bell went on--

    'Ah! I wish I could show you our High Street--our Radcliffe
    Square. I am leaving out our colleges, just as I give Mr.
    Thornton leave to omit his factories in speaking of the charms of
    Milton. I have a right to abuse my birth-place. Remember I am a
    Milton man.

    Mr. Thornton was annoyed more than he ought to have been at all
    that Mr. Bell was saying. He was not in a mood for joking. At
    another time, he could have enjoyed Mr. Bell's half testy
    condemnation of a town where the life was so at variance with
    every habit he had formed; but now, he was galled enough to
    attempt to defend what was never meant to be seriously attacked.

    'I don't set up Milton as a model of a town.'

    'Not in architecture?' slyly asked Mr. Bell.

    'No! We've been too busy to attend to mere outward appearances.'

    'Don't say ~mere~ outward appearances,' said Mr. Hale, gently.
    'They impress us all, from childhood upward--every day of our
    life.'

    'Wait a little while,' said Mr. Thornton. 'Remember, we are of a
    different race from the Greeks, to whom beauty was everything,
    and to whom Mr. Bell might speak of a life of leisure and serene
    enjoyment, much of which entered in through their outward senses.
    I don't mean to despise them, any more than I would ape them. But
    I belong to Teutonic blood; it is little mingled in this part of
    England to what it is in others; we retain much of their
    language; we retain more of their spirit; we do not look upon
    life as a time for enjoyment, but as a time for action and
    exertion. Our glory and our beauty arise out of our inward
    strength, which makes us victorious over material resistance, and
    over greater difficulties still. We are Teutonic up here in
    Darkshire in another way. We hate to have laws made for us at a
    distance. We wish people would allow us to right ourselves,
    instead of continually meddling, with their imperfect
    legislation. We stand up for self-government, and oppose
    centralisation.'

    'In short, you would like the Heptarchy back again. Well, at any
    rate, I revoke what I said this morning--that you Milton people
    did not reverence the past. You are regular worshippers of Thor.'

    'If we do not reverence the past as you do in Oxford, it is
    because we want something which can apply to the present more
    directly. It is fine when the study of the past leads to a
    prophecy of the future. But to men groping in new circumstances,
    it would be finer if the words of experience could direct us how
    to act in what concerns us most intimately and immediately; which
    is full of difficulties that must be encountered; and upon the
    mode in which they are met and conquered--not merely pushed aside
    for the time--depends our future. Out of the wisdom of the past,
    help us over the present. But no! People can speak of Utopia much
    more easily than of the next day's duty; and yet when that duty
    is all done by others, who so ready to cry, "Fie, for shame!"'

    'And all this time I don't see what you are talking about. Would
    you Milton men condescend to send up your to-day's difficulty to
    Oxford? You have not tried us yet.'

    Mr. Thornton laughed outright at this. 'I believe I was talking
    with reference to a good deal that has been troubling us of late;
    I was thinking of the strikes we have gone through, which are
    troublesome and injurious things enough, as I am finding to my
    cost. And yet this last strike, under which I am smarting, has
    been respectable.'

    'A respectable strike!' said Mr. Bell. 'That sounds as if you
    were far gone in the worship of Thor.'

    Margaret felt, rather than saw, that Mr. Thornton was chagrined
    by the repeated turning into jest of what he was feeling as very
    serious. She tried to change the conversation from a subject
    about which one party cared little, while, to the other, it was
    deeply, because personally, interesting. She forced herself to
    say something.

    'Edith says she finds the printed calicoes in Corfu better and
    cheaper than in London.'

    'Does she?' said her father. 'I think that must be one of Edith's
    exaggerations. Are you sure of it, Margaret?'

    'I am sure she says so, papa.'

    'Then I am sure of the fact,' said Mr. Bell. 'Margaret, I go so
    far in my idea of your truthfulness, that it shall cover your
    cousin's character. I don't believe a cousin of yours could
    exaggerate.'

    'Is Miss Hale so remarkable for truth?' said Mr. Thornton,
    bitterly. The moment he had done so, he could have bitten his
    tongue out. What was he? And why should he stab her with her
    shame in this way? How evil he was to-night; possessed by
    ill-humour at being detained so long from her; irritated by the
    mention of some name, because he thought it belonged to a more
    successful lover; now ill-tempered because he had been unable to
    cope, with a light heart, against one who was trying, by gay and
    careless speeches, to make the evening pass pleasantly away,--the
    kind old friend to all parties, whose manner by this time might
    be well known to Mr. Thornton, who had been acquainted with him
    for many years. And then to speak to Margaret as he had done! She
    did not get up and leave the room, as she had done in former
    days, when his abruptness or his temper had annoyed her. She sat
    quite still, after the first momentary glance of grieved
    surprise, that made her eyes look like some child's who has met
    with an unexpected rebuff; they slowly dilated into mournful,
    reproachful sadness; and then they fell, and she bent over her
    work, and did not speak again. But he could not help looking at
    her, and he saw a sigh tremble over her body, as if she quivered
    in some unwonted chill. He felt as the mother would have done, in
    the midst of 'her rocking it, and rating it,' had she been called
    away before her slow confiding smile, implying perfect trust in
    mother's love, had proved the renewing of its love. He gave short
    sharp answers; he was uneasy and cross, unable to discern between
    jest and earnest; anxious only for a look, a word of hers, before
    which to prostrate himself in penitent humility. But she neither
    looked nor spoke. Her round taper fingers flew in and out of her
    sewing, as steadily and swiftly as if that were the business of
    her life. She could not care for him, he thought, or else the
    passionate fervour of his wish would have forced her to raise
    those eyes, if but for an instant, to read the late repentance in
    his. He could have struck her before he left, in order that by
    some strange overt act of rudeness, he might earn the privilege
    of telling her the remorse that gnawed at his heart. It was well
    that the long walk in the open air wound up this evening for him.
    It sobered him back into grave resolution, that henceforth he
    would see as little of her as possible,--since the very sight of
    that face arid form, the very sounds of that voice (like the soft
    winds of pure melody) had such power to move him from his
    balance. Well! He had known what love was--a sharp pang, a fierce
    experience, in the midst of whose flames he was struggling! but,
    through that furnace he would fight his way out into the serenity
    of middle age,--all the richer and more human for having known
    this great passion.

    When he had somewhat abruptly left the room, Margaret rose from
    her seat, and began silently to fold up her work; The long seams
    were heavy, and had an unusual weight for her languid arms. The
    round lines in her face took a lengthened, straighter form, and
    her whole appearance was that of one who had gone through a day
    of great fatigue. As the three prepared for bed, Mr. Bell
    muttered forth a little condemnation of Mr. Thornton.

    'I never saw a fellow so spoiled by success. He can't bear a
    word; a jest of any kind. Everything seems to touch on the
    soreness of his high dignity. Formerly, he was as simple and
    noble as the open day; you could not offend him, because he had
    no vanity.'

    'He is not vain now,' said Margaret, turning round from the
    table, and speaking with quiet distinctness. 'To-night he has not
    been like himself Something must have annoyed him before he came
    here.'

    Mr. Bell gave her one of his sharp glances from above his
    spectacles. She stood it quite calmly; but, after she had left
    the room, he suddenly asked,--

    'Hale! did it ever strike you that Thornton and your daughter
    have what the French call a tendresse for each other?'

    'Never!' said Mr. Hale, first startled and then flurried by the
    new idea. 'No, I am sure you are wrong. I am almost certain you
    are mistaken. If there is anything, it is all on Mr. Thornton's
    side. Poor fellow! I hope and trust he is not thinking of her,
    for I am sure she would not have him.'

    'Well! I'm a bachelor, and have steered clear of love affairs all
    my life; so perhaps my opinion is not worth having. Or else I
    should say there were very pretty symptoms about her!'

    'Then I am sure you are wrong,' said Mr. Hale. 'He may care for
    her, though she really has been almost rude to him at times. But
    she!--why, Margaret would never think of him, I'm sure! Such a
    thing has never entered her head.'

    'Entering her heart would do. But I merely threw out a suggestion
    of what might be. I dare say I was wrong. And whether I was wrong
    or right, I'm very sleepy; so, having disturbed your night's rest
    (as I can see) with my untimely fancies, I'll betake myself with
    an easy mind to my own.'

    But Mr. Hale resolved that he would not be disturbed by any such
    nonsensical idea; so he lay awake, determining not to think about
    it.

    Mr. Bell took his leave the next day, bidding Margaret look to
    him as one who had a right to help and protect her in all her
    troubles, of whatever nature they might be. To Mr. Hale he
    said,--

    'That Margaret of yours has gone deep into my heart. Take care of
    her, for she is a very precious creature,--a great deal too good
    for Milton,--only fit for Oxford, in fact. The town, I mean; not
    the men. I can't match her yet. When I can, I shall bring my
    young man to stand side by side with your young woman, just as
    the genie in the Arabian Nights brought Prince Caralmazan to
    match with the fairy's Princess Badoura.'

    'I beg you'll do no such thing. Remember the misfortunes that
    ensued; and besides, I can't spare Margaret.'

    'No; on second thoughts, we'll have her to nurse us ten years
    hence, when we shall be two cross old invalids. Seriously, Hale!
    I wish you'd leave Milton; which is a most unsuitable place for
    you, though it was my recommendation in the first instance. If
    you would; I'd swallow my shadows of doubts, and take a college
    living; and you and Margaret should come and live at the
    parsonage--you to be a sort of lay curate, and take the unwashed
    off my hands; and she to be our housekeeper--the village Lady
    Bountiful--by day; and read us to sleep in the evenings. I could
    be very happy in such a life. What do you think of it?'

    'Never!' said Mr. Hale, decidedly. 'My one great change has been
    made and my price of suffering paid. Here I stay out my life; and
    here will I be buried, and lost in the crowd.'

    'I don't give up my plan yet. Only I won't bait you with it any
    more just now. Where's the Pearl? Come, Margaret, give me a
    farewell kiss; and remember, my dear, where you may find a true
    friend, as far as his capability goes. You are my child,
    Margaret. Remember that, and 'God bless you!'

    So they fell back into the monotony of the quiet life they would
    henceforth lead. There was no invalid to hope and fear about;
    even the Higginses--so long a vivid interest--seemed to have
    receded from any need of immediate thought. The Boucher children,
    left motherless orphans, claimed what of Margaret's care she
    could bestow; and she went pretty often to see Mary Higgins, who
    had charge of them. The two families were living in one house:
    the elder children were at humble schools, the younger ones were
    tended, in Mary's absence at her work, by the kind neighbour
    whose good sense had struck Margaret at the time of Boucher's
    death. Of course she was paid for her trouble; and indeed, in all
    his little plans and arrangements for these orphan children,
    Nicholas showed a sober judgment, and regulated method of
    thinking, which were at variance with his former more eccentric
    jerks of action. He was so steady at his work, that Margaret did
    not often see him during these winter months; but when she did,
    she saw that he winced away from any reference to the father of
    those children, whom he had so fully and heartily taken under his
    care. He did not speak easily of Mr. Thornton.

    'To tell the truth,' said he, 'he fairly bamboozles me. He's two
    chaps. One chap I knowed of old as were measter all o'er. T'other
    chap hasn't an ounce of measter's flesh about him. How them two
    chaps is bound up in one body, is a craddy for me to find out.
    I'll not be beat by it, though. Meanwhile he comes here pretty
    often; that's how I know the chap that's a man, not a measter.
    And I reckon he's taken aback by me pretty much as I am by him;
    for he sits and listens and stares, as if I were some strange
    beast newly caught in some of the zones. But I'm none daunted. It
    would take a deal to daunt me in my own house, as he sees. And I
    tell him some of my mind that I reckon he'd ha' been the better
    of hearing when he were a younger man.'

    'And does he not answer you?' asked Mr. Hale.

    'Well! I'll not say th' advantage is all on his side, for all I
    take credit for improving him above a bit. Sometimes he says a
    rough thing or two, which is not agreeable to look at at first,
    but has a queer smack o' truth in it when yo' come to chew it.
    He'll be coming to-night, I reckon, about them childer's
    schooling. He's not satisfied wi' the make of it, and wants for
    t' examine 'em.'

    'What are they'--began Mr. Hale; but Margaret, touching his arm,
    showed him her watch.

    'It is nearly seven,' she said. 'The evenings are getting longer
    now. Come, papa.' She did not breathe freely till they were some
    distance from the house. Then, as she became more calm, she
    wished that she had not been in so great a hurry; for, somehow,
    they saw Mr. Thornton but very seldom now; and he might have come
    to see Higgins, and for the old friendship's sake she should like
    to have seen him to-night.

    Yes! he came very seldom, even for the dull cold purpose of
    lessons. Mr. Hale was disappointed in his pupil's lukewarmness
    about Greek literature, which had but a short time ago so great
    an interest for him. And now it often happened that a hurried
    note from Mr. Thornton would arrive, just at the last moment,
    saying that he was so much engaged that he could not come to read
    with Mr. Hale that evening. And though other pupils had taken
    more than his place as to time, no one was like his first scholar
    in Mr. Hale's heart. He was depressed and sad at this partial
    cessation of an intercourse which had become dear to him; and he
    used to sit pondering over the reason that could have occasioned
    this change.

    He startled Margaret, one evening as she sate at her work, by
    suddenly asking:

    'Margaret! had you ever any reason for thinking that Mr. Thornton
    cared for you?'

    He almost blushed as he put this question; but Mr. Bell's scouted
    idea recurred to him, and the words were out of his mouth before
    he well knew what he was about.

    Margaret did not answer immediately; but by the bent drooping of
    her head, he guessed what her reply would be.

    'Yes; I believe--oh papa, I should have told you.' And she
    dropped her work, and hid her face in her hands.

    'No, dear; don't think that I am impertinently curious. I am sure
    you would have told me if you had felt that you could return his
    regard. Did he speak to you about it?'

    No answer at first; but by-and-by a little gentle reluctant
    'Yes.'

    'And you refused him?'

    A long sigh; a more helpless, nerveless attitude, and another
    'Yes.' But before her father could speak, Margaret lifted up her
    face, rosy with some beautiful shame, and, fixing her eyes upon
    him, said:

    'Now, papa, I have told you this, and I cannot tell you more; and
    then the whole thing is so painful to me; every word and action
    connected with it is so unspeakably bitter, that I cannot bear to
    think of it. Oh, papa, I am sorry to have lost you this friend,
    but I could not help it--but oh! I am very sorry.' She sate down
    on the ground, and laid her head on his knees.

    'I too, am sorry, my dear. Mr. Bell quite startled me when he
    said, some idea of the kind--'

    'Mr. Bell! Oh, did Mr. Bell see it?'

    'A little; but he took it into his head that you--how shall I say
    it?--that you were not ungraciously disposed towards Mr.
    Thornton. I knew that could never be. I hoped the whole thing was
    but an imagination; but I knew too well what your real feelings
    were to suppose that you could ever like Mr. Thornton in that
    way. But I am very sorry.'

    They were very quiet and still for some minutes. But, on stroking
    her cheek in a caressing way soon after, he was almost shocked to
    find her face wet with tears. As he touched her, she sprang up,
    and smiling with forced brightness, began to talk of the Lennoxes
    with such a vehement desire to turn the conversation, that Mr.
    Hale was too tender-hearted to try to force it back into the old
    channel.

    'To-morrow--yes, to-morrow they will be back in Harley Street.
    Oh, how strange it will be! I wonder what room they will make
    into the nursery? Aunt Shaw will be happy with the baby. Fancy
    Edith a mamma! And Captain Lennox--I wonder what he will do with
    himself now he has sold out!'

    'I'll tell you what,' said her father, anxious to indulge her in
    this fresh subject of interest, 'I think I must spare you for a
    fortnight just to run up to town and see the travellers. You
    could learn more, by half an hour's conversation with Mr. Henry
    Lennox, about Frederick's chances, than in a dozen of these
    letters of his; so it would, in fact, be uniting business with
    pleasure.'

    'No, papa, you cannot spare me, and what's more, I won't be
    spared.' Then after a pause, she added: 'I am losing hope sadly
    about Frederick; he is letting us down gently, but I can see that
    Mr. Lennox himself has no hope of hunting up the witnesses under
    years and years of time. No,' said she, 'that bubble was very
    pretty, and very dear to our hearts; but it has burst like many
    another; and we must console ourselves with being glad that
    Frederick is so happy, and with being a great deal to each other.
    So don't offend me by talking of being able to spare me, papa,
    for I assure you you can't.'

    But the idea of a change took root and germinated in Margaret's
    heart, although not in the way in which her father proposed it at
    first. She began to consider how desirable something of the kind
    would be to her father, whose spirits, always feeble, now became
    too frequently depressed, and whose health, though he never
    complained, had been seriously affected by his wife's illness and
    death. There were the regular hours of reading with his pupils,
    but that all giving and no receiving could no longer be called
    companion-ship, as in the old days when Mr. Thornton came to
    study under him. Margaret was conscious of the want under which
    he was suffering, unknown to himself; the want of a man's
    intercourse with men. At Helstone there had been perpetual
    occasions for an interchange of visits with neighbouring
    clergymen; and the poor labourers in the fields, or leisurely
    tramping home at eve, or tending their cattle in the forest, were
    always at liberty to speak or be spoken to. But in Milton every
    one was too busy for quiet speech, or any ripened intercourse of
    thought; what they said was about business, very present and
    actual; and when the tension of mind relating to their daily
    affairs was over, they sunk into fallow rest until next morning.
    The workman was not to be found after the day's work was done; he
    had gone away to some lecture, or some club, or some beer-shop,
    according to his degree of character. Mr. Hale thought of trying
    to deliver a course of lectures at some of the institutions, but
    he contemplated doing this so much as an effort of duty, and with
    so little of the genial impulse of love towards his work and its
    end, that Margaret was sure that it would not be well done until
    he could look upon it with some kind of zest.
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