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Crying for the Light, Vol. 3 [of 3] or Fifty Years Ago   By: (1820-1898)

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3]

Transcribed from the 1895 Jarrold and Sons edition by David Price, email ccx074@pglaf.org. Many thanks to Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library, UK, for kindly allowing their copy to be used for this transcription.

“This is the condition of humanity; we are placed as it were in an intellectual twilight where we discover but few things clearly, and yet we see enough to tempt us with the hope of making better and more discoveries.”

—BOLINGBROKE.

Crying for the Light or Fifty Years Ago

J Ewing Ritchie Author of ‘East Anglia’

Vol 3

London: Jarrold and Sons Warwick Lane E.C. 1895

CONTENTS OF VOL. III.

CHAPTER PAGE XXII. AT THE CATTLE SHOW 1 XXIII. THE FUNERAL 36 XXIV. THE HONEYMOON 48 XXV. A REVELATION 65 XXVI. THE ITALIAN COUNTESS 82 XXVII. IN BRUSSELS 114 XXVIII. A COUNTRYMAN IN TOWN 131 XXIX. THE COLONEL 159 XXX. ROSE RETIRES FROM THE STAGE 183 XXXI. CHIEFLY ABOUT THE LAND 201 XXXII. CONSULTATION 223 XXXIII. THE FINAL RESOLVE 247

CHAPTER XXII. AT THE CATTLE SHOW.

Again we are at Sloville, on the occasion of the anniversary of the flourishing Agricultural Society of the county—an occasion which fills the town with rosy faced, ruined British farmers; which blocks up all the leading streets with flocks and herds of oxen and sheep from a thousand hills, and which not a little astonishes and vexes the soul of the true born son of the soil, as he contemplates new fangled machinery of every variety and for every purpose; alarms him with ominous forebodings of a time when, Othello like, he will find his occupation gone, and the rascally steam engine doing the work, and taking the bread out of the mouth of an honest man. He thinks of Swing and sighs. That mysterious personage had a way of putting down threshing machines which was satisfactory for a time; but, alas! steam is king, and it is vain to fight with him. It is steam quite as much as the wickedness of the landlord, incredible as it may seem to the Radical politician, which has emptied the country and filled the town. It would be all right if steam would work off our surplus population. Alas! it does nothing of the kind, and each year the labourer finds himself of less account; nor can there be any change for the better till we get the people back on to the land, away from the crowded city with its ever increasing drudgery and toil. Perhaps when they have settled Ireland our wise men of Gotham may look at home. There is plenty for them to do there. It is high time that we do something for our bold peasantry, once their country’s pride.

It is a fine, bright, sparkling morning, one rare in England, but to be made the most of when it comes. There are no clouds in the sky, and there is scarce a breath of air to bring them down from the vasty deep above. Every hedgerow is bright with flowers, and musical with the song of birds. Overnight there was a shower, which laid the dust and added a touch of freshness to the emerald meadows. On every side ancient oaks and wide reaching elms cast a grateful shade. What can be dearer than an English landscape on such a day? Even the thatched clay cottage, with its roses and honeysuckle, looks picturesque, and the brown cows suggest more than milk as they lie chewing the cud, apparently at peace with themselves and all below... Continue reading book >>




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