xcursions led us often to the Devil's Den, an excavation in an abandoned ledge of limestone, in a solitary situation at some distance from the town, and guarded, now as then, by three rather spectral-looking Lombardy poplars, which to us boys had a sort of mystic and undefined significance. Here we procured bits of serpentine, interspersed with veins of rag-stone, as we denominated asbestos, which, strangely enough, we used to chew. I suppose that no boy ever went to that place alone, and a sort of solemn ceremony attended his first visit with his older playmates, to a scene bearing an appellation ominous enough to call up every vague dread of his youthful heart. The approach on these occasions was rather circuitous, through the pastures, until an elevated mass of stone, standing quite solitary, was reached, designated as "Pulpit Rock." To the summit of this, the neophyte was required to climb, and there to repeat some accustomed formula, I fear not very reverent, by way of initiation, and supposed t
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