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Wilfrid Cumbermede   By: (1824-1905)

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WILFRID CUMBERMEDE.

[Illustration: ONE DAY, AS WE WERE WALKING OVER THE FIELDS, I TOLD HIM THE WHOLE STORY OF THE LOSS OF THE WEAPON AT MOLDWARP HALL.]

WILFRID CUMBERMEDE

BY

GEORGE MACDONALD

WITH 14 FULL PAGE BLACK AND WHITE ILLUSTRATIONS BY F.A. FRASER.

CONTENTS.

CHAP.

INTRODUCTION.

I. WHERE I FIND MYSELF. II. MY UNCLE AND AUNT. III. AT THE TOP OF THE CHIMNEY STAIR. IV. THE PENDULUM. V. I HAVE LESSONS. VI. I COBBLE. VII. THE SWORD ON THE WALL. VIII. I GO TO SCHOOL, AND GRANNIE LEAVES IT. IX. I SIN AND REPENT. X. I BUILD CASTLES. XI. A TALK WITH MY UNCLE. XII. THE HOUSE STEWARD. XIII. THE LEADS. XIV. THE GHOST. XV. AWAY. XVI. THE ICE CAVE. XVII. AMONG THE MOUNTAINS. XVIII. AGAIN THE ICE CAVE. XIX. CHARLEY NURSES ME. XX. A DREAM. XXI. THE FROZEN STREAM. XXII. AN EXPLOSION XXIII. ONLY A LINK XXIV. CHARLEY AT OXFORD XXV. MY WHITE MARE XXVI. A RIDING LESSON XXVII. A DISAPPOINTMENT XXVIII. IN LONDON XXIX. CHANGES XXX. PROPOSALS XXXI. ARRANGEMENTS XXXII. PREPARATIONS XXXIII. ASSISTANCE XXXIV. AN EXPOSTULATION XXXV. A TALK WITH CHARLEY XXXVI. TAPESTRY XXXVII. THE OLD CHEST XXXVIII. MARY OSBORNE XXXIX. A STORM XL. A DREAM XLI. A WAKING XLII. A TALK ABOUT SUICIDE XLIII. THE SWORD IN THE SCALE XLIV. I PART WITH MY SWORD XLV. UMBERDEN CHURCH XLVI. MY FOLIO XLVII. THE LETTERS AND THEIR STORY XLVIII. ONLY A LINK XLIX. A DISCLOSURE L. THE DATES LI. CHARLEY AND CLARA LII. LILITH MEETS WITH A MISFORTUNE LIII. TOO LATE LIV. ISOLATION LV. ATTEMPTS AND COINCIDENCES LVI. THE LAST VISION LVII. ANOTHER DREAM LVIII. THE DARKEST HOUR LIX. THE DAWN LX. MY GREAT GRANDMOTHER LXI. THE PARISH REGISTER LXII. A FOOLISH TRIUMPH LXIII. A COLLISION LXIV. YET ONCE LXV. CONCLUSION

WILFRID CUMBERMEDE.

INTRODUCTION.

I am I will not say how old, but well past middle age. This much I feel compelled to mention, because it has long been my opinion that no man should attempt a history of himself until he has set foot upon the border land where the past and the future begin to blend in a consciousness somewhat independent of both, and hence interpreting both. Looking westward, from this vantage ground, the setting sun is not the less lovely to him that he recalls a merrier time when the shadows fell the other way. Then they sped westward before him, as if to vanish, chased by his advancing footsteps, over the verge of the world. Now they come creeping towards him, lengthening as they come. And they are welcome. Can it be that he would ever have chosen a world without shadows? Was not the trouble of the shadowless noon the dreariest of all? Did he not then long for the curtained queen the all shadowy night? And shall he now regard with dismay the setting sun of his earthly life? When he looks back, he sees the farthest cloud of the sun deserted east alive with a rosy hue. It is the prophecy of the sunset concerning the dawn. For the sun itself is ever a rising sun, and the morning will come though the night should be dark.

In this 'season of calm weather,' when the past has receded so far that he can behold it as in a picture, and his share in it as the history of a man who had lived and would soon die; when he can confess his faults without the bitterness of shame, both because he is humble, and because the faults themselves have dropped from him; when his good deeds look poverty stricken in his eyes, and he would no more claim consideration for them than expect knighthood because he was no thief; when he cares little for his reputation, but much for his character little for what has gone beyond his control, but endlessly much for what yet remains in his will to determine; then, I think, a man may do well to write his own life... Continue reading book >>




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