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CORA, THE SPANIEL. The pet which took little Carlo's place in our home and hearts was a pretty chesnut coloured spaniel named Cora. During the summer we had her for our playmate, my brother Albert, sister Carry, and I, spent a good deal of time about the pond in the park, watching Cora swim and play her merry gambols in the water. There grew in the middle of the pond some beautiful white water lilies, which we taught her to bite off and bring to the shore for us. Although Cora loved us all very much, yet she seemed to love little Charlie Allen the most; he was a nice little boy only four years old, the son of a poor widow who lived close by. He and Cora would run and play together for hours, and when they were tired lie down and go to sleep in the shade.
It happened that my father one morning took Cora with him to the village, and was gone nearly all day, so that little Charlie was without his playmate and protector. But after school, my sister and called Cora and ran down to the pond to get some of the beautiful white lilies. Cora barked and leaped in, and swam to the lilies, where she was soon hid from sight by the flags and other water plants. Presently we heard her barking and whining in great distress.
We called her again and again ; and at last she came swimming slowly along dragging something with her teeth. As she got near we saw it was a child. We waded in as far as we dare, and took the body from her, and found it was poor Charlie Allen, and quite dead. He was as cold as ice, his eyes were fixed, and his hands stiff and blue still
was no answer.
held tightly three water lilies which he had plucked. We supposed he had slipped from a log on which he had gone out for the flowers, and which was half under water.
I shall never forget the grief of his poor mother-how she threw herself beside him, folded him close in her said, “Charlie, dear Charlie, speak to mother.” But there
Poor Cora followed close after the body as it was carried home, whining piteously all the way. She would not leave the room in which Charlie was placed, but remained there all night.
When the body of Charlie was carried to the grave, Cora followed close, and when the coffin was let down, she jumped into the grave, and growled and struggled when the men took her out. Every day after she went to the grave, never missing the spot, though there were many other similar little mounds in the graveyard. Sometimes she would scratch the earth away, and bark and whine, and then listen for the voice of Charlie in answer. But it never came, though she waited, and listened, and pined for it many days. She ate scarcely anything, and would not play with us now; and nothing could induce her to go into the pond again. One evening she did not come home, and my brother and I went for her. When we reached the churchyard we passed along very carefully till we came to Charlie's grave, talking about him. Cora was lying on the top among the grass, which had grown green and long. She seemed to be asleep and not to hear our steps or voices. My brother spoke to her, and patted her on the head, but she did not move. I bent down and looked into her face. She was dead !
THE OLD WOODEN BRIDGE. You have perhaps often seen such an old wooden bridge as this, and walked over it, looking down at the water below, without thinking much about what you would have had to do if the old bridge had not been there. Would you not have had to wade through the water or go back again? I think you would; and so dont despise the old wooden bridge if it carries you safely over the water.
And perhaps you have not thought much about bridges at all, or who invented them. I confess I did not think when I sat down to write this, that there is not one mention of a bridge in all the Bible. But when I did begin to think about how they were first invented, I tried if I could recollect anything about a bridge in the good old book. But I could not; and so I took down my old friend Alexander Cruden, to see if he had found the word “bridge” or “bridges" in the bible when he searched it so diligently to make his valuable Concordance, and I was surprised to find that neither of the words were there, either in the Old or the New Testament. In the book called the Apocrypha the word “bridge” is once, and only once, mentioned; but remember that the Apocrypha is not the word of God.
Now let me tell you a little more about the origin of bridges.
In common with many other of the most useful inventions the origin of bridges is veiled in obscurity. By whom they were first built, and in what manner the earliest bridges were constructed, are now mere matters of conjecture, and lie beyond the reach of authentic history. After providing food, dwelling-places, and garments, one of the first wants of which society would be sensible, would be some means of crossing the streams and brooks by which it was surrounded, and natural bridges, consisting of trunks of trees which had fallen across a rivulet, or masses of rock which had got wedged into mountain fissures, would present models like which bridges of simple construction might soon be built. Stepping-stones in shallow rivers, covered with planks from stone to stone, exhibit the first principles of piers and arches,
which science has brought to their present wonderful pera fection.
The earliest historical record of a bridge is that which Herodotus gives of the one constructed by Queen Nitocris, over the Euphrates at Babylon. Diodorus relates that this bridge extended to the extraordinary length of five furlongs; but Rollin, without good grounds for so doing, has cast adrift this statement by affirming that the Euphrates at Babylon did not exceed one furlong in width.
With the Greeks, who were more a maritime people, and accustomed to navigation, there is no doubt but that ships and boats preceded, if not superseded, the use of bridges. In their brightest days, when their fine style of architecture was complete, when their porticos were crowded with paintings, and their streets with statues, the people of Athens waded over the Cephisus for want of a bridge. The Greeks do not seem to have valued the construction of the arch sufficiently to have excelled in bridge building, and must yield the palm of merit in this department of architecture to their successors. No people of the ancient world carried the power of rearing stupendous arches, and magnificent vaults and cupolas, to such an extent as the ancient Romans. It was a work which harmonized with their martial spirit, just as statuary bespoke the refined texture of the soul of Greece. After the construction of their great sewers, their aqueducts, and their cupola over the Parthenon of M. Agrippa, a bridge over the Tiber was of early execution; and the invention of the architecture of stone bridges, as practiced in its best and