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A ROMANCE IN SIX CHAPTERS.

REGISTER OF FACTS AND OCCURRENCES RELATING TO

(MARCH, 1862 it, has lately been dangerously ill.--The so-called restoration spoke of my mother as La Vezzosa, and by that name sbe of Amiens Cathedral has progressed under M. Viollet le Duc. was known until she died. The interior has not yet been touched, save the Lady Chapel “ La Vezzosa and I lived in the Via Vergognosa, a long, in the extreme east, which is closed for repairs, amounting to dark, narrow lane, close to the Ghetto, or Jew's quarter. The entire reconstruction. Outside, the arches over the statues first eight years of my life seem to have been passed mostly of the kings bave been restored; many of the columns, and in semi-darkness, in the odour of rancid oil and old clothes, nearly all the kings' heads, which the Rerolation docked, are and amid the perpetual upbraidings of my mother. I don't renewed; and new statues by Cauderon stand over the south think that she hated me, but disease and misfortune had made portal. Many other points are reported, which I do not her fractious and capricious; and I suffered for her unhappi. repeat, and would rather not think of.—The Chapel of Cour ness and her infirmities. It may have occurred to you that de Lion, at Andelys, in the department of the Seine Inférieure, much of this capricious and fractious mood has descended has been destroyed by the effects of frost. It came down from the mother to the daughter. We were less positively with a tremendous crash ; and a second slip obliterated even poor than continually embarrassed. My mother had a cer. the part of the hill on which it had stood.-A great Floren- tain yearly allowance paid to her in quarterly instalments, and tine project for extending the Loggia d'Orcagna round with undeviating punctuality, from some foreign source; two more sides of the Piazza della Signoria, and converting but she was a bad manager, careless and improvident; and the whole into a sort of National Pantheon by the erection of whenever she had a few scudi in hand, would waste them in statues, etc., has been some while afoot. Signor Falcini fine clothes and good cheer. Then she would beg advances has prepared a report and plans for the purpose. Though from the banker who was the medium of her remittances; or, the project as a whole may be commendable, it seems when he refused a loan, borrow money from the old-clothes hard for any such bran-new affair to destroy a historic old dealers in the Ghetto, or, failing that resource, pawn her silk building like the " Tetto de' Pisani,” the present post-office.- dresses and lace mantles. Thus her income was always A late award of" great gold medals for art,” made by the forestalled, and she would be often penniless a week after King of Prussia at the instance of the Academy of Arts, shows quarter-day. It was a miserable life; and but for the tinkling us who are the first in repute in that country : the recipients of an old guitar to which my mother used to sing in a shrill being Professor Bläser, a sculptor, Herr Becker and Professor but still very flexible voice, I think that I should have died of Camphausen, historical painters, and Professor Gude, land- grief. I used to be sent by fits and starts to a dirty little scape painter. Among seven recipients of the“ small gold school over a cow-house, where a horrible old woman, pesti. medal,” the landscape painter Oswald Achenbach is the best ferous with garlic, used to go to sleep during one-half of the known in England. - Excavations at Pompeii have been lately school hours, and tell us absurd stories about the Madonna and re-commenced in a vigorous manner.

the saints during the other half. W. M. Rossetti. " It does not matter now, I shall see you no more ; but I

was a very beautiful child. I remember that my mother TIE PRIMA DONNA'S REVENGE.

once took me to visit a great English sculptor who had for years made Rome his dwelling-place. I cannot recall his

name; but I know that he was gifted and famous, and that BY GEORGE AUGUSTUS SALA.

the Roman princes as well as the great English nobility CHAPTER V.

staying in the Eternal City during the winter season used to THE FAIRY'S MANUSCRIPT.

come to his studio. We went to him one very cold January “ LEONAND,--dear Leonard,”—it was thus the Fairy's nianu- morning. He opened the door to us himself. He was a script commenced. “In all human probability I shall see you simple looking old gentleman, in a gray dressing gown; and

I am vain enough to think,-nay, I am certain,- no sooner did he see us than he took my head between his that you will read what I have written; but alas! when you two hands, and turned it either way, and then upwards towards have come to the end, it will be with a shudder that you will his own, smiling, and muttering, Testa angelica ! testa lay down these pages; it will be only with horror and aversion angelica !' He was a curious old gentleman, and had half that I shall be remembered by you. Dearest, -I may call forgotten his English. I was not afraid of him, because he you go now, if for the last time :--the woman who has sneered looked so simple and kind. He took us into a great lofty at and insulted you, loves you ; has watched over you and barn of a place, full of beautiful white statues. He gave us prayed for you ; has marked your every movement and your coffee and fruit, and by-and-by put me into a great carved every gesture. Bear with her now; judge with mercy. For. chair, and bade me be as quiet as ever I possibly could for ten give and pity her! for she has suffered much. And now, minutes. My mother stood behind me, and whispered that if read."

I stirred ever so little she would beat me to death when we These lines were blotted as though the tears of the writer got home. I trembled very much at this threat; but had fallen fast as she penned them. They were hastily remained as still as my fear would allow me; and the old scrawled at the top of a sheet, the rest of which was blank. gentleman, standing before a pedestal which was opposite, But when the manuscript proper commenced, Leonard found and on which was a great mass of gray clay, began pulling it it not only legible, but firm and deliberate in its calligraphy. about with bis fingers, looking at me, smiling and talking to

himself all the time. After about half an hour he let us go,“ It is not without reason," wrote the Fairy with the Fair but he had allowed me to rest myself for a minute or two Hands, “that I call myself the most miserable woman in the more than once; and I think that as we passed out of the world. I have been wretched from my cradle. Leonard, door he put some money in my mother's hands. The next let me rob you of the first of your illusions, if indeed you time we went,-about a week afterwards,-he showed me have cherished any regarding me. I am much older than the image of my own face in shining white plaster. I sat you. I am very nearly thirty years of age. I was born in the great carved chair over and over again; and one day in Rome; and my earliest reminiscences are connected he took me up to a little marble statue of a child with bare with the return of Pius VII. to his capital, after the arms and feet and wings, which he said was me. downfall of Napoleon. Who my father was I never mother had bared my arms and feet for him to work by ; nay, knew. My mother used sometimes to tell me that he was an

more,

but I disdain to recount what her cupidity would officer who had fallen in the campaign of Russia. At other have led her to bad I pot resisted in despite of the stripes times she would say that he was a stranger from beyond sea. and revilings the refusal led to. After one dreadful day we Then she would chide and even strike me if I dared ask the went no more to the studio ; the old gentleman patted me on question. Afterwards she would call me unkind names; the head, and said almost sorrowfully that he had lost his while of my father she seldom spoke without a malediction. Zephyr ; and when we reached home, my mother passionately She said that she was an Englishwoman. She would apos. declared that I had taken the bread out of her month. trophize herself occasionally as 'poor Fanny ;' but of whether “I did not in the least understand her meaning; but I that was her real Christian name or what was her surname was soon enlightened. At the wretched little school I went I am ignorant. Our neighbours,-for friends we had none, to, tbe girls used to pinch and teaze me, pull my long fair

no more.

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kair, and call me 'heretic,''alien, figlia di niente,' daughter reach, for I remember my mother burning a whole box full of of nothing,' and the like. I had one special enemy, a dark papers a few days before her death, weeping passionately as stout girl with a strong arm and flashing black eyes, called she did so. What was to become of me? Within four-and, Nina Cortesi. Her father sold cheeses and macaroni twenty hours of La Vezzosa's death, the municipality put her in the very street in which we lived, and my mother was corpse into a deal shell, put that again into a long black cart often in his debt. Nina was at least three years older than I like a dray, and flung all that remained of her into the Fossa

She was tall of her age, and clever, and cruel, and communa, or paupers' grave, at the cemetery. Our landlord, wicked. She would not let me sit by her in school one day, with whom I need not say my mother was in arrear for rent, or indeed sit down at all. 'I am an honest man's child,' she seized the few chattels and articles of wearing apparel that said; 'and what are you, little vermin? You are not fit to were left, towards the discharge of his debt; and I was left be with Christians and decent people. Your mother cannot 'sul parimento,'-in the street, and alone in the wide, wide pay for her polenta ; and she picks up money by letting you world. I should have been better off had it been in Rome out on hire as a model for the sculptors. Papa says that you that I was left an orphan; for the Pope's government is very will be a beautiful Venus,-0! una bellissimo !-some day.' tolerant of beggars; does not mind how ragged they are;

“ This was the secret. I had been taken to the sculptor to gives them bread sometimes, and allows them to sit on the serve the degraded purpose of a model. I cried with rage, steps of the churches and beg to their hearts' content. But not with grief. I flew at Nina ; I tried to bite, to scratch, to in Lombardy, you know, the Austrians have the sway;* they tear her hair. She flung me away from her with a scornful do not allow pauperism,--only slavery ; and my first appear. laugb,-flung me to the ground bruised and almost bleeding. ance as a mendicant might have led to my being dragged off Then the old woman woke up and made me stand on the to prison by ruffianly policemen, and subjected to shametu! stool in the dark corner for ' penitence.'

chastisement. Could I even have managed to play the poor “We left Rome soon afterwards, and went by a long weari. old cracked guitar which had belonged to my mother, and some retturino journey from Rome to the great city of Milan, which even the landlord disdained to seize, I might have in Lombardy. Larger remittances than usual had arrived for scraped together a few coppers every evening by singing to La Vezzosa, and besides these a letter, which she read over the guitar in the cafés of the Corso de' Servi. La Vezzosa and over to herself dozens of times, sometimes laughing and had taught me many songs; or rather I had picked tb.om up sometimes crying. We had handsomer lodgings in Milan, in by ear,--perhaps I had a natural aptitude for vocalization, a nice street called the Borgo Imperiale; and were not from hearing her sing so often ; but she had been too indolent obliged to pawn or borrow or beg for many months. Nor to teach me my notes, and I could make no use of the lute, indeed was my poor mother destined to pawn, beg, or borrow which was my sole inheritance. I have it now. Altogether any more. We were just growing poor again, when a cough, I might have starved, but for the charity of the family who with which she had long been troubled, assumed the lived beneath the floor we had occupied. It was a very large most aggravated form of pulmonary disease. Fatal symptoms family. Gaetan Ambrogi, the father, was only a poor musishowed themselves, and one bright summer morning, in cian who played the bassoon in the orchestra of La Scala. the year eighteen hundred and twenty-two, the poor Vezzosa His wife sang in the choruses at the same gigantic theatre. died. I can only recollect her as being terribly thin and He had a son who was a music copyist; another, a lad of haggard, and with a hectic spot on either cheek; but to judge twelve, who played the triangle at the other theatre, the by a little faded miniature I yet possess, she must once have Canobbiana. One of his daughters danced in the ballet nt a been eminently beautiful and as fair as I was."

smaller theatre still; and the two youngest, almost babies, “Fair as I am,” had been originally written in the Fairy's earned a swanziger or two now and then by appearing as manuscript : but the preseut tense had, by an afterthonght, children in any opera where juveniles were required. They been erased, and the past substituted for it. Leonard sighed, were all very poor and very happy, and very fond of one and resumed.

another. They lived in two rooms, full always of tobacco “ I was eleven years of age, and utterly alone in the world. smoke and the odour of soap. Papa Ambrogi, -it was My mother had never been very kind to me; and, to tell thus he was habitually called, -took pity on me. Wite,' truth, had she had her way, I might have grown up a com- he said, we must not let the little Vezzosa, the Vezzosina, mon drudge and comparse in the studios of Rome,-now starve.

Non mancarà di pane.

She shall not want for sitting for a Bacchante and now for a St. Cecilia, and used bread while these lips can blow a bassoon.

La povera ! and abused according to the common lot of painters' models. we must give her the bite and the sup. You must put a I had not even been to school since we arrived at Milan ; and little more water and a great deal more bread in the soup, the only language I could speak was a slip-shod medley of and we shall not know that we have an extra mouth to Italian, French, and English, all of which tongues La Vezzosa feed. She is fair, she is clever, she looks good; she will soon spoke with equal fluency and incorrectness. Yet I missed be able to do something for herself. Is not Mitridato earn. and bewailed my mother. I missed the tinkling of the ing eighteen zwanzigers a month ?' Mitridato was the little cracked guitar, her shrill Alexible voice, and the borcaroles boy who played the triangles at the Canobbiana, and very and chansonettes she used to sing. I missed even her proud of his talents and his income he was. scoldings, and the shade and sunshine of her changeful moods.

“The Ambrogis were all very kind to me. They had but I had the more reason to miss her ; for when she was laid in little to give, for theatrical artists of the inferior class are her coffin, there seemed not one soul on earth to whom I miserably paid in Italy; but what they had they gave freely. could look for succour. You spoke, Leonard, of your own

I had my soup every day, and learned to forget nearly all my forlorn condition. You had at least a mother who loved you, English, and began to dance very nicely under the tuition or influential relatives, a powerful and generous patron. What the grown-up daughter, Anita. I stayed with these hospita. must my state have appeared ! Nobody came forward to ble people six months, and I don't think Papa Ambrogi, whe claim me. The papers fonnd among my mother's effects had become very fond of me, would have said a word had I were either old theatrical contracts of engagements, long stayed six years; but his wife, who, although kind to me, was since cancelled, or else curt notes from the English tourists also a prudent housekeeper, and had to make the zwanzigers at Rome, responding to applications for pecuniary relief, go a long way, began to bint very unmistakably that I must some complying with, but more declining to accede to, the begin to do a little towards earning my living. Andrà bene request. From the first it was inferred that the La Vezzosa sulle gambe : 'she will go well on her legs,' she remarked; had been on the stage,—there was one contract with the and this she meant not @guratively, but literally. Anita manager of a theatre at New Orleans ; from the last that declared that I was born to be a dancer ; that if I were only she had been at one period of her career in England, and had two or three years older, and had a few friends,—la poverina ! some acquaintance with the nobility and gentry of that they all cried, -I might be received into the choregraphic country. But there was nothing that could afford a clue to department of the Imperial and Royal Conservatorio of Milan. any relatives or connexions she might have had, or that would Meanwhile, she said, she would speak to M. Lazaro. put a morsel of bread in my mouth. Some such documents may have had an existence; but they were beyond all buman

• Written A.D. 1840.

“M. Lazaro,-he would not suffer himself to be called of the most famous dancers of the Scala and the Grand Opera signor, and always declared that he was a Parisian, although in Paris, and I had certainly made great progress under his his French was the vilest jargon that ever put human ears tuition. The remembrance of his cruelty did not deter me out of tune,—had taught dancing to the ladies of Eugène Beau. from continuing with him. 'I am too big to be whipped, now, harnais' court, when viceroy of Italy. He had been a famous I thought; and I determined that I would secrete a stiletto dancer, too, at the opera, and boasted of his brilliant successes in my dress, and stab him if he struck me again with those in France, England, and even Russia. When I first knew horrid thongs. bim, his dancing days had long since been over. He was " This was not to be, however; and it is no worn-out star of frightfully ugly; his face and his shirt frill were always the ballet who writes these lines. My fortuitous guardians covered with snuff; his legs were boards, he was nearly were on the eve of concluding a fresh compact with M. Lazaro, humpbacked; he never washed his hands, and he wore a wig. when, in executing a difficult pas, I violently sprained my He was said to be immensely clever in teaching operatic ankle. At first the hurt was thought trifling, but it resisted dancing; and he had always a number of young pupils, ranging all remerlies, and for many months I was perfectly helpless. from eight to thirteen years of age, whom he was preparing My master, thinking I was lamed for life, and would never for the stage, or for entrance into the Conservatorio. This make a prima ballerina, very soon found out an excuse for unpleasant old man came to see me, made me dance, pinched creeping ont of his bargain. My apprenticeship was at an my arms, wrenched my shoulders when my posture did not end. I was free from slavery and the scourge ; but on the please him, took a vast quantity of snuff, and finally offered other hand I was destitute as ever. There was nothing left to take me as an apprentice for three years, and not only for me but to have recourse to the charity of the good bassoon teach me dancing, but board, lodge, and clothe me during that player at the Scala. Unfortunately, the Ambrogis had grown period. I was frightened at this old M. Lazaro's face and poorer; the son who played the triangles bad been taken by voice and humped back ; but the Signora Ambrogi was only the Austrians for a drummer; the music copyist had become too glad to accept the offer, and I did not dare to refuse, embroiled in some political intrigue, and had been compelled rezembering how kind these poor people had been to me to fly to Switzerland; the daughter who danced had run away when I was left an orphan. So a little bundle of necessaries with a Russian count, and left him for a quack doctor who was made up for me, and I went as an appreatice pupil to went round to the fairs. All these used to contribute to the M. Lazaro. I kissed the Ambrogis all round, and promised family revenue ; but now only Ambrogis and his wife could be to come and see them on my monthly giorno di sortita,- depended upon, for the children who used to perform Norma’s holiday.

ill-used infants were still too young to earn a livelihood. They “The three years I passed with this old wretch were one took me in again and fed me; but I was quick-witted, and very long round of torture, relieved only by an occasional visit to soon saw that I was a burden to them. At last a situation was my kind friends in the Borgo Imperiale ; but I was often found for me in a milliner's shop in the Corso Cavallo, where, deprived of my holiday by my master. He was a tyrant, a under a very good-tempered mistress, I remained for a whole hypocrite, and a miser. He had a wife as tyrannical, as year, doing odd tasks of needlework, waiting on the young hypocritical, and as miserly as himself. He had a dozen ladies who made the bonnets and mantles, and going home hapless little apprentices, whom he kept slaving in a dancing every evening to the Borgo Imperiale to sleep. I could school all day long, sometimes till late in the evening, and pay for my own lodging now, and cost my protectors nothing. whom he frequently sent to bed without any supper if their “I had always been passionately fond of music. I have exertions during the day did not please him. This was not told you all about the poor Vezzosa, her shrill voice, and her the worst; we were mercilessly beaten with a scourge made cracked guitar. As I grew older, I became more and more of leathern thongs:-beaten for the most trifling offence, for an devoted to the art. We had music enough at M. Lazaro's,– error in a step, for a tremulous motion of the hand when music, indeed, all day long ; but it was harmony of a kind executing a particular pose. It was no novelty to me to be for which I did not care, being elicited from a squeaking whipped. I bore my stripes well enough both from husband little dancing-master's fiddle, or his, to which we danced. and wife ; but I could not endure continual semi-starvation. Hovever, I had persuaded Madame Lazaro, who was an old I ran away to the Ambrogis, but my master came after me to opera chorus-singer, to teach me my notes. She was a eross claim his fugitive apprentice; and although kind-hearted old hag, but had fits and starts of good temper, and I took Papa Gaetan would gladly have granted me an asylum, his advantage of these, and studied music from the few hints she wife said that children would never become ballerine without gave me as hard as ever I could. Nature had gifted me with a being whipped ; and as my protector had entered into certain voice,--but I need not say any more on that topic, you have formalities before the police, which constituted him my legal heard me; and I do not sing a quarter so well now as I did guardian, there was unfortunately no doubt about the bind- ten years ago. ing nature of my apprenticeship. I was now in the second “I was always singing to the young girls who worked in the year of my servitude. I went back to the old wretch, and was milliner's shop. Thoy were never tired of bearing me, nor I dreadfully punished; but I determined to run away again on of singing. My mistress condescended to praise me. "You the first opportunity. I should have done so, I dare say, but have a fortune in your little throat, carina,' she used to say. for the entreaties of Papa Ambrogis, who implored me, with. But for that poor lame foot you might aspire to become one tears in his eyes, to suffer my prob until the end. day prima donna absoluta at the Scala, to take the first parts He interceded with my master to treat me with greater in the operas of the maestro Rossini.' But the poor lame foot humanity, and Papa Ambrogi had been so kind to me when I was growing rapidly better. On my fifteenth birthday it most wanted kindness, that I could not bring myself to dis- was quite well ; and it was with a feeling of exultation that, obey him. I was not so hard-hearted then, Leonard, as I am meeting my old persecutor, Lazaro, close to the cathedral, I now.

made him a mock curtsey, and tripped away from him, half “ In the last year of my apprenticeship I was tall and across the Piazza del Duomo. I can see the wrinkled villain clever enough to go on in the corps de ballet at the Canob- now, wagging his toothless jaws, and shaking his walkingbiana, and even to take part occasionally in a pas de cing. stick at me as I ran from him. Ah! he had better have had

In three years, the avaricious old Lazaro used to mutter, me as an apprentice again. she will be a coryphée, in ten she will be a prima ballerina.' “One day there came into the milliner's shop a lady He would be glad enough to renew the term of my appren- belonging to the groat Milanese nobility. Her name was the ticeship for three, six, any number of years more; and the Contessa Muratori. Our mistress happened to be from home, Ambrogis would, nothing loth, have consented to the bargain ; and I was singing away gaily to the work-girls. I came to ask for tender-hearted as old Papa Gaetan was, his wife was a her pleasure, but she bade me sing on ; and, although somemodel of prudence and economy, and I am very much mis- what frightened at displaying my ability before so great a taken if she did not receive a pecuniary consideration from lady, I did sing, and my very best, too. She bought a Ince M. Lazaro when I was first apprenticed to him. Nor was I cap, ordered half-a-dozen now bonnets, and on going away so very reluctant to continue my education under his direction. put two golden ducats into my hand. I gave the money to

The oli brute was certainly very clever, had brought up some Madame Ambrogi, and told her who the lady was. "Tke Countess Muratori !' cried the old woman ; 'Vezzosina, your Nina had always hated me. She did not dare to pinch or fortune is made.'

strike me now, as she used to do when I was a child ; but “Up to this timo I had always been called the Vezzosina, – she could stare and sneer, and say cruel things of me, and this the diminutive of the appellation given to my mother. When she continually did. The story of my having been a sculptor's my indentures to Lazaro had been signed, the police found a model in Rome, of my mother being called La Vezzosa, of her name for me, and I was registered as Benvenuta Imperiali,- pawning and borrowing and drinking rosolio, was very soon a nome di circostanza, taken half from the haphazard charac. current in the Conservatorio. It did not do me much harm, ter of my position, and the other half from the street in which The lady superintendents only looked for good conduct ; the I lived. At Lazaro's I used to be called Flora. At the professors only looked for musical talent. Ifa girl was clever milliner's they gave me my police name of Benvenuta, but not and well conducted, it did not matter what her name was, often. With much more frequency I was the Vezzosina. I whence she came, or whether she was anybody's or nobody's am the Countess Malinska, now; I have had another name, child. which you shall hear by-and-by; but to this day I do not know “ Still Nina made me unhappy. I tried to conciliate her, what my real name, or that of my parents, may have been. and to make her little presents, but in vain. She put her

A few days after I had sung to the Countess Muratori, I dark handsome face to mine one day, and said, “ I hate you; was sent for to her hotel. I was taken into her grand draw. I hate you because you are ygang, and have fair hair and á ing-room, and bidden to sing there. I sang. The countess soprano voice. If it were a mezzo soprano I should not care. was delighted, but there was a gentleman present who was It is a pure soprano, and I shall have to play Pippo to your even more gratified, and who beat time gently with his hand Nouria. I will poison myself or kill you first ; yes, I will kill and his foot, smiling and nodding his head as he listened to you, viper!' and she stamped her foot. I have learnt the me. He was tall and stout and fair and handsome. He did way of stamping mine, Leonard, since I knew Nina Cortesi. not look like an Italian, and the countess called him, my lord. Dear Nina,' I used to urge, 'I cannot help my voice.

“ He was a great English nobleman, and immensely rich. Heaven gave it to me.' He laughed at my broken English, for I yet preserved “Bah!' she would reply. 'I tell you that I hate, loathe, some smattering of the language of my childhood,- he made abominate you, and shall do so imtil one or another of us is me tell him the whole of my simple history. A tear stood in dead. Why did you come here with your white face and your his eye when I described the kindness of the Ambrogis, but voice like oil! My voice is hard and rigid as iron. You can bis brow darkened when I dwelt on the cruelty of Lazaro. do the trille. I cannot do the trille. I shall be Arsace to your When I went away he kissed me, and gave me ten ducats. Semiramide. Go away, or I shall do you mischief.'

“When I reached home that evening the English lord had " It was fortunate that Nina and I slept in different dorbeen there. The next morning he came to the Corso Cavallo, mitories, else I think it not at all improbable my enemy spoke to my mistress, asked if I were a good girl, seemed per- would have risen some night from her bed and strangled me. fectly satisfied with the reply, and then, kissing me again, The girls used to say that she had the gettatura,--the evil eye. asked which of two courses I preferred, -to be sent to school She was very clever, but very indolent and perverse, and was in England, or to enter the Imperial and Royal Conserva- continually being punished for impertinence and idleness. torio, there to be trained as an operatic singer. Now, as my She tormented me for two years, and it was at last with a ideas of a school were confined to a gloomy place where I sensation of infinite relief that we were relieved from her danced all day to the squeaking of a fiddle, was half-starved and

presence. The paternal Cortesi died at Rome. Cheese, olive, cruelly beaten, and as I loved singing with all my heart, I did and macaroni saving had enabled him to save many scudi ; not long hesitate.

I chose the Conservatorio, and in less and Nina was spoken of as an heiress. than a fortnight afterwards I was entered as a pensionnaire

“The generous nobleman who provided for my wants did in the singing department of that magnificent foundation. Anot, however, carry his kindness so far as to wish me to corhandsome present was made to the Ambrogi family by the respond directly with him. He had perhaps many protégees Countess Maratori, and I still went to see the good old such as I was,---such as, in a superior rank of life, you were, couple on my giorni di sortita, my holidays, which were Leonard, -all over Europe. But the Countess Muratori, to frequent and regular now. The entire expenses of my board whom I paid a solemn visit once every three months, told me and education were paid for by the rich English lord, the that his lordship sometimes in his letters condescended to ask noble MARQUIS OF SWINESTALE, then travelling in Italy.”

how the little fair girl at the Conservatorio was getting on; “Gracious heaven!” exclaimed Leonard, breaking off in hoped that she was not forgetting her English, and promised his perusal of the Fairy's manuscript. “ She must be the Bertolacci, the famous singer who ten years since sent half to take a box at the opera when he came to London, to make

sensation.' Europe crazy, and of whose mysterious disappearance Lord Swinestale has often talked to me. But he never said a word and I left the institution with very gratifying testimonials

“ The time when I was to quit the Conservatorio arrived, about having paid for her education at Milan."

But I had yet another year of when he quitted Italy that I was to keep up my knowledge make an appearance on the lyric stage.” “It was one of the express directions left by my patron as to ability and good conduct.

probation to undergo ere I should be thought competent to of the English language. A professor was found for me, an old Englishman, long resident in Milan, who gave me

(To be concluded in our next.) regular lessons. As you liave heard, I speak English with

BOOKS RECENTLY PUBLISHED, fiuency, but with a foreign accent. How should I do otherwise ? How do I know that I am an English woman at all ?

(Any book in the following list will be obtained to order by the publisher of "I was well fed, well clothed, well taught, and kindly Admiralty Administration, its Faults and Defaults, Sva, 58. eloth. treated in the Conservatorio. The professors all praised my Ahn's Method of Learning German, 1st and 2nd Courses, 1 vol. 2s. industry and intelligence, and augured enthusiastically for Ahn's Grammar of the German Language, sep. 8vo, 4s. cd. cloth. my future success. My mirror told me that I was beautiful ; Alford's Greek Testament, with revised Text, Vol. 4, Part 2, 800, 144. ah! very beautiful. I should have been happy as the day was All Round the World, edited by Ainsworth, Vol. 1, 460, 78. 6d. cloth.

Almost Persuaded, new edit. 18mo, Is. 6d. cloth, long, but that I found an enemy in the Conservatorio. She Arnold on Translating Homer, Three Lectures at Oxford, 34. 6d. cloth. was an old enemy too; an enemy who dated from my child. Atkins's Six Discourses on Pastoral Duties, Donellan Lectures, 6s, hood, from the days when I lived with the Vezzosa in the dark Atkinson's Sheriff Law, 4th edit. 8vo, 106. 6d. cloth. street close to the Ghetto in Rome. This enemy was the Baxter's Crucifying of the World, edited by Baillie, 10mo, 5s. cletk. grocer's daughter, Nina Cortesi.

Birch's Constipated Bowels, the Causes and Cure, cr. Sro, 2s.6d. cloth. “She was darker, handsomer, wickeder than ever. She bishop's Walk and the Bishop's Times, by Orwell, sep. Svo, 5s.cloth. was now seventeen, and in a class far above mine, although Bohn's Classical Library, Walker's Atlas of Classical Geography, 7s.6d.

Bohn's English Gentleman's Library, Walpole's Correspondence, new ed. Vol. 1. os. her voice was a deep contralto, and mine a pure soprano. She owed her position in the Conservatorio solely to her Bowes's Illustrative Gatherings for Preachers and Teachers, 2nd edit. 58. talents, for her parents were poor enough ; but she had been Bradshaw's Shareholders' Guide for 1901, 12mo, 78. 6d. cloth.

Brenten's The Tragedy of Life, 2 vols. cr. 8vo, 218. cloth. elected a pensionary, and was endported entirely by the state

a

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