ut of books that I either despise or abhor; I play to them music unworthy of the name; I nod my head in acquiescence when my very soul cries no. Nor is that all; I take my place each morning in the centre of the room, open the Bible, and in pious voice, I, Infidel, read forth the prayers that are to strengthen the household through the day. When, at a given point, all the maid-servants rise, whirl round in their calico gowns and turn their demure backs to me as they kneel in a row, I know not whether to laugh or cry. O Constance, it is infamous of me! And why do I do it? Out of consideration for them? out of kind-heartedness? Not a bit of it! Vanity, my dear; sheer vanity. If they cared for me less, if I did not feel that they almost worship me, holding out their old hands to me for all the pleasure that their day still may bring, would I do it? No; for then I should not care, as I feel I do now, to keep their good opinion, even at the expense of making myself appear better, according to their lights, than I
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