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NOTES TO THE ABBOT AND SALVESTRA.
Page 39, Stanza Lvi., line 2, for “tale," read “tail.”
40, Stanza Lviji., line 2, for
line 16, read “One day she died dead drunk. I'm really serious." 66, Stanza xxxix., line 14, for “eat,” read “ate." 67, Stanza XL., line 1, for “eat,” read “ate.” 79, Stanza V.,
line 14, for “makes," read “make." 80, Stanza vii., line 16, read
“Men rush at maids like moths unto the candle.” 87, Stanza xx., line 7, for “rise," read “arise." 89, Stanza xxiv., line 1, read “Love, cherish, please, and make much of her, therefore.” 96, Stanza xxxvIII., line 5, read
“He let her go to sermons, plays, and routs,
Which is the circle of a woman's bliss.”
I have been young and now I am old.
They tell me, moreover, that I am also getting garrulous, and particularly fond of teaching by fablewhich, by the bye, I always was ; therefore, that is no strange thing. It is to this instinct of my nature, indeed, that I trace that fondness for Boccaccio and the
Italian novellists for which I am become remarkable.
But they say further that the habit grows with me, and that whenever I undertake to discuss a subject, the fable is ever certain to come before, and the application to follow after. This is surely in the order of nature ;
it seems to be understood for my humour, I may solicit indulgence on the score of age, and be permitted the same on this occasion.
One is not always compelled to be original in a fable, any more than in a story—(some of Boccaccio's are borrowed, and all the tales in this little volume are confessedly borrowed from him) ;-nor is one properly compellable to acknowledge whether the fable one tells is at first or second hand-enough that it is told, that you know not whence it is derived, and that it is applicable to the purpose. A fable etymologically is only "a word spoken,”-and a word spoken in season is good, and such a fable is the best of all spoken words.
Once upon a time the Fowls of Heaven took it into their wise heads to plant a Grove of Oaks, which the Druids might worship in, and thus make sacred. Property had not yet put up her pales, but when the oaks had grown to their full majesty, and enclosed the space which became sacred by acts of devotion, the awe which they excited made them respected ; and, in course of time, old age and custom made them venerable. But, at length, the Druids ceased to worship beneath the shadow of their branches ; nevertheless, the awe with which they were at first