OLD Lady Lydiard sat meditating by the fire- side, with three letters lying open on her lap.
Time had discolored the paper and had turned the ink to a brownish hue. The letters were all addressed to the same person--"THE RT. HON. LORD LYDIARD"--and were all signed in the same way--"Your affectionate cousin, James Tollmidge." Judged by these specimens of his correspondence, Mr. Tollmidge must have possessed one great merit as a letter-writer--the merit of brevity. He will weary nobody's patience, if he is allowed to have a heari g. Let him, therefore, be permitted, in his own high- flown way, to speak for himself.
First Letter .--"My statement, as your Lordship requests, shall be short and to the point. I was doing very well as a portrait-painter in the country; and I had a wife and children to consider. Under these circumstances, if I had been left to decide for myself, I should certainly have waited until I had saved a little money before I ventured on the serious expense of taking a house and studio at the west end of London. Your