LIKE other deep convictions, Mr. Bryan's religion was with him from the beginning. The description which he has given of his parents and home shows how completely he was hedged about by Christian precepts, and how smoothly his life ran on within the prescribed limits.
As I reread the letters of our rather lengthy courtship (four years) I find his diversions to have been Sunday school, church, prayer meeting, an occasional church social, and at long intervals, a circus or an evening at the theater. I select a letter written on his twenty-first birthday, beginning--
"Have just signed a fictitious name, 'Lazarus,' to my essay Pauperism and learned my Sunday-school lesson for tomorrow, and now, though it is nearly eleven P. M., am going to write you. . . .
"The day (my twenty-first birthday) has been spent very quitely; took a glance over my boyhood, at its pleasures gone beyond recall, at its few successes, its few sorrows. Then full of gratitude for the blessings of the past, I turned, with some trembling, to contemplate the unknown future, its responsibilities, its possible successes, and its probable misfortunes. I would dread to be compelled to set forth upon this sea with nothing but the light of my reason to aid me. What a blessing it is that we have that guide, the Bible. The future looks bright. I have almost graduated and will be prepared for work. I have good health, good friends, and best of all, a loving, faithful sweetheart."
My first impressions of Mr. Bryan were of a tall, slender youth, wearing a black frock coat and leading his class of