'The Birthright' is, in its way, quite as well constructed, as well written, and as full of incident as any story that has come from the pen of Sir Conan Doyle or Mr. Stanley Weyman.
Now, my father prospered at Elmwater Barton. He was a clever man, and fortune favoured him. He began to lay by money, and he farmed the land so well that folks said he would in a few years, by the blessing of God, have enough to buy back the Pennington estates, according to the terms of his father's will. This was told Richard Tresidder and his mother one day, and they both laughed. About this time my father's cattle began to die. No one could explain why, but die they did, until many rumours were afloat, and people whispered that the cattle were bewitched. Anyhow, it was asserted that Richard Tresidder had been seen talking with Betsey Fraddam, the witch, while many delicacies had been taken to Betsey's cottage from Pennington.
Now, as I said, there will be many things in this narrative which I, an unlearned man, cannot explain. Still, I must tell of matters as they occurred, this, among others, especially as my relations with Eli Fraddam, Betsey's son, have been condemned by Parson Inch. It is said t
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