Abbildungen der Seite

latter brought an appeal against this decision, and then the case was formally tried in court, the best advocates of the day being employed on both sides. The Troelles founded their claim on the following circumstances :The child to which Madame Brunot gave birth was feeble and delicate, and even had a serious illness before being sent out to nurse; now, the child of the Troelles was remarkably strong and healthy, and was less likely to be the first to take a fatal illness. The child in dispute, also, was very healthy. Again, the Troelles averred that the two children, when first sent to nurse at Richeville, were laid in one bed by their conductress, and then were mistaken one for the other, and were given the wrong nurses accordingly. Of this assertion, the only proof brought by them was, that a cap marked G, not belonging to Madame Troelle's child, but to Brunot's, was sent to her on the infant's asserted decease. The letter G was the first letter of M. Brunot's name Guillaume. (Madame Troelle also averred, that the linen, marked by the Brunots with a piece of -leather, came to her at the same time; but as she at first mentioned nothing but the cap, this second statement was not believed, and indeed greatly damaged her cause.) Again, the Troelles asserted, that the linens which the living child wore, on being taken from Richeville to Boisemont, were precisely those originally given by Madame Troelle to her child. And, lastly, it was stated that the living child bore a strong resemblance to the other children of the Troelles, and none to Brunot's family.

Slight as these grounds appear to be, they formed the whole case of the Troelles, and were the foundation of a trial that greatly interested the public of France. The Brunots answered them chiefly by denying that the cap marked G ever belonged to them or their child; and by pointing to the register which contained the record of the infant Troelle’s death. They shewed that no proof existed of any exchange of the children ever having taken place. As for the change of health in the child, such things were too common to excite the slightest

surprise. With regard to the resemblance of the disputed child to the Troelles, the wife of Brunot did not deny that there was a seeming likeness between them ; and for this she could only account by the circumstance of her having been much struck, before the birth of the child, by seeing the corpse of another infant of the Troelles, and gazing on it long. The Brunots also dwelt on the fact of no claim having been made for two whole years.

The court, after hearing long pleadings on both sides, came to the conclusion, that the children had never been exchanged—that the dead child was that of the Troelles ; and, accordingly, the decree of the judges was, that the shoemaker Brunot and his wife should keep the infant.

To this case, the compiler of the Causes Célèbres adds an anecdote, which seems to have suggested the plot of Miss Edgeworth's excellent story entitled Ennui. A nurse, into whose charge was given the child of a rich noble, had an ambition to see her own son a lord. She accordingly exchanged the one infant for the other, and, in time, the changeling became inheritor of the wealth of his supposed ancestors. The real heir, having the claims of a foster-brother upon his substitute, went to him, and was taken into his service. Distinguishing himself highly by his probity and good conduct, the servant became his master's intimate friend, and was treated by him more as a real than as a foster-brother. In the course of time, the nurse was taken ill. She then sent for her real son, the seeming gentleman of birth, and disclosed the whole secret to him. Going home immediately afterwards, he there took an opportunity of telling the story, as if it had occurred to third parties, and concluded by asking his servant and foster-brother what he would have done had he been the true heir, and had learned the secret from the supposed one. 'I would have halved my fortune with the other,' was the immediate answer. sincerity must now be tested. You and I are the true parties to whom I alluded. The real heir did not shrink from his word, but shared his means fairly with his former master.

Then your



'Twas in the flowery month of June,

When hill and valley glow
With purple heath and golden whin,

White thorn and crimson rose;
When balmy dews fall soft and sweet,

And linger half the day, Until the sun, with all his heat,

Can scarce clear them away;
Amid the Grampian mountains dun,

A shepherd tended sheep,
And took with him his infant son,

Up to a craggy steep.
The sheep lay scattered far and wide;

The sky was high and clear;
The shepherd's dog pressed close beside

The child so fair and dear.

The father and his darling boy

Lay dreaming on the hill,
Above them, all was light and joy;

Around them, all was still.
When, hark ! a low and distant bleat

Broke on the shepherd's ear,
He quickly started to his feet-

Dark mists were gathering near. The shepherd knew the storm might last

Through all the day and night, And feared his sheep, amid the blast,

Might stray far in their fright.

He kissed, and charged his boy to stay

Behind the craggy steep;
And with his dog he went away

To gather in his sheep.

An hour had scarcely passed, when back

To the same spot he came,
Called on his boy; while rock to rock

But echoed back his name.

No trace, no track, no sound was there !

He searched, he called in vain; Then home he rushed in wild despair,

Immediate help to gain.
He gathered friends and neighbours round-

They scaled the craggy height;
But he they sought could not be found,

Although they searched all night.
Three days and nights they still sought on;

Their efforts all were vain :
The shepherd's son was surely gone,

Never to come again.

Meantime, the shepherd's dog was seen,

When given its morning cake, With the

whole cake his teeth between, The hillside road to take.

The shepherd, wondering what this meant

His son still in his mind
After the dog one morning went,

Which flew as fleet as wind.

Up, up, a high o’erhanging crag,

The dog in haste hath gone, Then gave his tail a joyous wag ;

The shepherd followed on.

A rocky ledge at length he gained,

His heart beat thick with joy,
For lo! the cave above contained,

All safe, his darling boy!
The bread the hungry infant took,

The dog lay at his feet;
The cake in two the child then broke,

And then they both did eat.

Such feasts of love are seldom seen

In gay and festal halls,
As this poor shepherd saw within

That cavern's rocky walls.


WONDERFUL cures were abundant in the days of antiquity. It is probable that Æsculapius himself, if any such person ever existed, was chiefly, if not solely, one who performed cures by working on the imagination of his patients. The numerous and noted body of priests who ministered in his temples in ancient Greece and Italy, were unquestionably healers of this order. Amulets, consisting of precious stones or certain plants, worn on the body; charms in the forın of words, prayers, and music; and the practice of magical rites—were all of them familiar modes of cure among the ancients, and continued to be so among many of the most advanced modern nations till a recent period. Indeed, the separation of genuine medicine from superstitious practices, is, even in England, a comparatively modern event; that is to say, amongst the learned, for the more ignorant people of all ranks yet put trust in quack medicines. There seems a good reason for this. Medicine is exactly one of those sciences in which the relation of cause and effect is of the sufficient degree of

« ZurückWeiter »