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him by inquiring whether a certain newspaper which he mentioned could be purchased in that quarter. Perhaps he foresaw that M. Marron would obligingly rush out to buy it himself, and that he should then be left for a little while alone with Agathe. They were left alone, and for a minute or two an embarrassing silence prevailed. Agathe was not the same as she had been two days ago — it takes so little time to turn the current of a girl's life . She wore an air of happiness mingled with anxiety; her eyes were bright, but her features were a little pale, and her manners were reserved. She knew that the colonel was going away, but she had not seen the paragraphs which summoned him, for Victor had pocketed the paper immediately after reading its contents, and M. Marron had instinctively refrained from alluding in her presence to the Citoyenne Fovard. Coughing to break the silence, Victor now repeated that he was going because he was wanted in his regiment. He said nothing about other people wanting him ; and it must have been still fresh in Agathe's mind how he had declared two days before that he had no wife or mother. And yet, with that feminine slyness, the first display of which must always be noted as a significant symptom in young girls, Agathe remarked, “Your friends will be very glad to see wou.” “I have no friends,” answered the colonel, mournfully. “No friends 2" echoed Agathe, with compassion, but also with a gleam in her eyes that belied the tone of her voice. “No friends that I care for,” replied the Communist, in a forlorn way; “but, oh Mademoiselle Agathe, I have been so happy here these two days It was like a glimpse of my childhood, when I had a home and a mother, and never guessed I should be drawing the sword against my own countrymen. If I live will you allow me to call, again at times, when there are no battles — when the war is over ?” “My father will always be pleased to see you, I am sure,” murmured Agathe; and, with downcast eyes, she added, “But why talk of battles P Must you always fight in them ’’’ “Well, we are in the midst of a struggle which must end soon, one way or the other; and those who are beaten will have to pay a heavy reckoning,” answered the Communist, with sombre agitation. “But, mademoiselle, promise me this "

—and he looked very beseechingly into her face as he held out a hand to her — “you may hear many things about me — do not believe them all. Remember that . often yield to temptations which would nót have got the better of us could we have been stopped in time by a loving hand — a hand like yours.” There were tears in his eyes as he said this, and her own face was blanched of all its colour; but she had no time to answer, for a cab trundled up to the entrance below and some steps were heard on the staircase. When the door opened M. Marron marched in, followed by a red-nosed Communist soldier, laden with a valise, a sword, and a pair of boots with gilt spurs. . “Here is the newspaper you wanted, colonel, and here is your orderly,” pompously shouted M. Marron. “The brave fellow rode up just as I arrived, and he seems to have been afraid you were dead.” The colonel cast a quick startled glance over the shoulder of the brave fellow to see that there was nobody behind him, and, perceiving that he was alone, appeared relieved. But his satisfaction was short-lived, for almost immediately a bell tinkled ; and on Aglae going to answer the call, a handsome, over-dressed woman flustered by, entered the drawing-room without pausing, and flew straight to Victor, throwing her arms round his neck and kissing him on both cheeks with extravagant demonstrations of joy. There was no mistaking the social rank of this person. French women can never dress wholly with bad taste; but this one had a style of wearing her silken attire which proved her to be not yet inured to the use of finery; and her manners had that impulsive abandon of the woman who sees no sin in anything, and has no care to conceal her impressions, good or evil. “Ah! I've found you at last, my poor Victor,” she exclaimed, kissing him again and again, and then placing her hands on his shoulders and pushing him back a little, the better to survey him. “Well, you can plume yourself on having thrown us all into a fine state. Some said you had been killed; others that you had decamped, and sold yourself for twenty sous to the Versaillais. And then there was that noodle whom you sent this morning, and who told me so mysteriously not to come here, that I instantly put on my bonnet and followed him – smelling a rat. I was saying to myself all the way that he must have been sent for to embalm you at least. But you don't seem happy to see me.” Victor in truth did not seem happy to see her : his face had changed to a leaden hue. “You ought not to have come here, he said, in a voice trembling with confusion and anger, and thrusting her aside roughly. “What I’ve no right to come to you when you're ill 7" she ejaculated, astonished. “Why, who is to nurse you, then 2° She turned round sharply, noticed Agathe, and stopped short, sweeping the young girl from head to foot with one of those lightning glances by which women scathe a suspected rival. “Ah, I see ' " she remarked, puckering up her lips. “I am much obliged to you, mademoiselle, for nursing my Victor; but for the future, my darling,” and she turned to Victor again, “you will have no other nurse but me. Now, come, and let me help you to put on your uniform. You must make yourself smart, for there is a spread this morning in old Protot's rooms at the Ministry of Justice, and I have promised you shall be there. It seems somebody has unearthed twelve dozens of champagne from Madame de Gallifet’s house, and there'll be some Johannisberg from Thiers's cellars.” Victor hung his head, and cast an ashamed look towards Agathe, who stood as if petrified, the quivering of her lips alone betokening that there was life in her. She remained motionless till the door closed behind the couple, and till a peal of the bold woman's laughter resounded in the adjoining room. Then she stretched out her hands like one blinded and tottered to her own chamber with feeble steps. Her father stood by with mouth agape, feeling that something strange was happening, but not underderstanding what. Half an hour afterwards, when the Communist colonel emerged in his resplendent uniform, and with the Citoyenne Léontine Fovard on his arm, he slipped a few gold pieces into Aglae's palm, and shook hands with M. Marron, thanking him for his hospitality. But he did not ask to take leave of Agathe – and he did well, for the poor child on reaching her room had fainted on the floor.

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From The Athenæum. The AUSTRIAN POLAR EXPEDITION.

LIEUT. PAYER, of the Austro-Hungarian Polar Expedition, has published, in the Meue Freie Presse, a detailed account of his voyage and travels, from which we learn much more relating to the newlydiscovered land than we have previously been able to place before our readers. The Admiral Tegethoff was provisioned for three years. At Tromsö, M. Carlsen, a Norwegian captain, was taken on board as ice-master, and the vessel left that port on the 14th of July, 1872. About the end of the month the ice was met with, and the difficulties of the expedition commenced. When south of William Island the Admiral Tegethoff was joined by the Isbjoern, Count Wilczek's yacht, and afterwards the two vessels sailed together until the 21st of August, when they parted, and then for two years the Tegethoff was imprisoned in a compact mass of ice. From the 29th of October the sun disappeared for io9 days, and during the first winter the sanitary state of the vessel gave trouble, as cases of scurvy and bronchitis broke out. The new year (1873) found them without hope, helplessly drifting with the ice, which carried them to the north-east, until they reached longitude 73° E. On the 16th of February the sun again became visible. The greatest cold was experienced at the end of February, when the temperature was — 51° Fahr., and the beautiful Aurora gradually diminished in brilliancy as the sunlight increased. From February the ice began to set to the north-west, the ship being raised seven feet above the water level, and with the ice forty feet thick under her. Thus she drifted until October, 1873, when she had reached the latitude 80° N. On the 31st of August, land was first seen to the north above the fog, but the crew were entirely precluded from reaching it. ... Lieut. Payer describes it as being “tantalizing in the extreme to see a great tract of land and not be able to reach it.” At the end of October an island was made out in front of the land first discovered. On it they landed, in 79° 54m north, and they named it after the promoter of the expedition, Count Wilczek. On the 22nd of October, the sun again left the ship for 125 days, but the discovery of the land had reanimated the explorers, and having got accustomed to

their icy prison, they did not feel so de

pressed as in the former winter. Magnetic, meteorological, and other observations, gave constant occupation to the officers. The question of abandoning the vessel was now seriously considered. Towards the latter end of March, it was resolved to make an attempt to explore the land by means of sledges, and they did so, and first reached a picturesque fiord, between Capes Tegethoff and McClintock, with mountains rising on either side to 2,500 feet, and at the head an enormous glacier, which was named Sonklar Glacier. The fiord was called Mordenskiöld Fiord. The country was entirely without sign of life; great dolomite mountains rose like colossal crystallizations into colonnades; the temperature was as low as —58° Fahr. on the journey, and was felt intensely during the night. The crew then returned to the ship and prepared for another journey. It was at this time that the engineer died, and he was buried during a violent snow-storm. On the 24th of March, they again started with the sledges, but could only take three of the dogs, as all the others were either dead or unfit for service. An immense strait (Austria Strait) separated two masses of land, the one to the east being named Wilczek Land, and that to the west Zichy Land, and the whole Franz Joseph Land. The strait ran to the north as far as 81°

ATTENTION has lately been directed to the question of facilitating commercial intercourse between British India and Siam, and there can be no doubt that the development of a trade between the two countries would be highly beneficial to both. A glance at the map shows the immense border tract that the kingdom of Siam holds lying along the frontier of our Eastern Empire. From lat. 21 deg. to lat. 10 deg. this tract trenches on lands now beginning to be opened up to commerce by colonists in British Burmah, Pegu, and Tenasserim. It is covered by dense forests of teak, probably the only ones now available for market, and which have been frequently the subject of disputes as to ownership in the law courts of India-disputes, however, which have been obviated by a recent treaty. At lat. Io deg. the frontiers meet on the Isthmus of Kraw, perhaps destined at some future day to form a field for the enterprise of a second M. Lesseps, when vessels are tired of the long round of the route to China by the Straits. The greater part of the

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5om, when it divided into two arms, an island, named Kronprinz Rudolph Land, forming the delta. The eastern arm could be seen as far as 82° Iom, while the western one led into an immense open sea. Dolomite is the predominating rock, rising abruptly in the form of truncated cones, which recalled vividly the Abyssinian mountains. The height was generally about 2,000 feet, but some summits reached to about 5,000 feet. All the valleys are filled with enormous glaciers: one, named the Dove Glacier, does not yield in importance to the immense Humboldt Glacier in Kennedy Channel. Old drift wood was met with, but not in large quantities, and the only animal was the white bear. Many of the views were grand. After undergoing much peril, on the 12th of April, 1874, the explorers reached Cape Fligely, in latitude 82° 5m, on the west coast of Rudolph Land, where immense numbers of birds were seen. It was here that land was observed to the north as far as the 83rd degree of latitude. The high point in the extreme north was named Cape Vienna, the land to the west Oscar Land, and that to the east Petermann Land. Then followed the final abandonment of the ship, and the journey, by sledges

and boats to Novaya Zemlya, and thence to Norway.

trade of these upper districts finds its vent at our ports of Rangoon and Moulmein. From Kraw to the borders of the Malayan peninsula, at the apex of which stands Singapore, the whole coast of Siam abounds in minerals of remarkable richness, principally tin. These are now worked by colonies of Chinese to a considerable extent. On the eastern side of this long promontory lies the Gulf of Siam, at the head of which stands Bangkok, the present capital. The delta of the river Menam, upon which Bangkok is built, about thirty-four miles from the sea, produces rice in great abundance, while the coast and the upper districts of the vast valley watered by the river and its tributaries grow sugar, cotton, indigo, pepper, drugs, dye-woods, and the usual products of tropical countries. Rich silver mines are known to exist, and under the present Government the celebrated gold mines are being energetically worked. Such being the natural advantages of Siam, it seems, also, to have been fortunate of late years in the char

acter of its rule. Since its treaty of 1856 with

Great Britain, the immunities secured to Caspian there are 20 unarmoured steamers, I Europeans have been conscientiously observed of which is in course of construction, and 9 by the Siamese Government. Life and prop- are without guns; the rest have 45 guns in all. erty have been perfectly secure during that The Siberian flotilla consists of 28 steamers, period. The priests have never interfered seven of which carry 36 guns between them ; with the toleration invariably allowed by the and the Aral flotilla has six small steamers, State, and the late king himself gave the five of which are armed with thirteen guns. In ground for the erection of a place of Christian (the White Sea there are three ships of war worship. The present king, it is well known, with four guns. The educational department has introduced a variety of reforms of the of the Russian Admiralty comprises a naval European type since his accession in Novem- school for 265 pupils at St. Petersburg, a sciber, 1873. In the previous year he returned entific school for 220 pupils, a training-school from a four months' tour to Singapore, Pe- for 400 boys, and a writing-school for 150 nang, Rangoon, Calcutta, Bombay, &c., and sailors at Cronstadt, and a midshipmen's his present civilizing policy is no doubt the school, a shipbuilding-school, and a school for result of his intercourse with Lord Mayo and sailor's daughters at Nicolaieff. A sum of the high officials of India. He has organized 442,941 roubles for the expenses of these an Imperial and Privy Council for the affairs schools is included in the Budget of the presof the nation, founded a high court of appeal lent year.

Pall Mall Gazette. for clearing off legal arrears, introduced a uniform mathematical standard of weights and measures, and established a method of auditing the public accounts and providing for the better payment and training of the troops and ANOTHER of the German States has de. the police of the town and country. On the clared itself as uncompromisingly opposed to whole, Siam may well be compared with Japan the pretensions of the Church to independin respect of the rapid progress in civilization ence as Prussia herself. Indeed, in some which it is making. The only danger is that respects the new law laid before the Chamber of going too fast; and it is to be hoped that of Hesse Darmstadt goes beyond the Falck wise advisers of the king may warn him that legislation in scope, for it imitates an Act many European customs, however well suited already passed in Baden, by making it an to our conditions of social life, are not to be offence in a priest to use his spiritual office violently introduced among Oriental popula- in any way for the purpose of influencing elections, certainly not among a people who, tions. In fact, in this matter both these though of docile and gentle manners, have still States would seem to have been taking a leaf strong prejudices of their own.

out of Judge Keogh's book; only what we are Pall Mall Gazette. arriving at by process of case-law they are

laying down by direct legislation. A spiritual court is to be appointed under the bill, in manifest imitation of that at Berlin which has

recently stripped Archbishop Ledochowski of The Russian naval journal Morskoi Zbornik his see, and is to be composed of seven memgives some particulars relative to the present bers, four at least being ordinary lay judges or condition of the Russian navy. The total magistrates. No spiritual penalty inflicted by number of ships of war in Russian waters is any Church power is in future to be allowed 525, 29 of which are ironclads, and they carry that can in any way trench upon the civic 921 guns. Their total burthen amounts to rights of the alleged offender. This pro172,401 tons, and their steam-power to 31,978 vision, of course, touches the Protestant comhorses. The personnel consists of 1,305 offi- munities, ostensibly at least, no less than the cers (including 81 admirals), 513 pilots, 210 Roman ; but other articles are directed exclu. artillery engineers, 145 marine engineers, 545 sively against the latter. For instance, reli. mechanical engineers, 56 marine architects, gious processions are no longer to occupy the 297 admiralty officials, 260 surgeons, 480 public roads without the previous permission civil officials, and 24,500 subordinates of of the proper civic authorities. No new esvarious ranks. The ships are distributed tablishment of any religious order is to be as follows:- In the Baltic there are 27 founded in any part of the Grand Duchy, nor ironclads and 110 unarmoured steamers, 70 are those now existing to receive any addiof which do not carry guns, and the rest have tional members. They are intended, thereabout 200 guns in all. The same number of fore, apparently to die out; the only exceptions guns are to be placed on the ironclads, four of allowed being the Ursuline nuns and other which are still in course of construction. The sisterhoods which devote themselves to eduBlack Sea fleet consists of a ironclads and 29 cation, whose continuance may be permitted unarmoured steamers. The ironclads (one of by special licence in the case of each house which is not yet ready for service) are armed from the Minister of the Interior. with four guns, and the other steamers, except

Pall Mall Gazette. four which do not carry guns, with 45. In the

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