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“ Is Mr. Figure within ?" inquired a stranger, who had entered the shop, before Mr. Jenkins had completed his sentence.
'My name is Figure," answered the bibliopole.
“I have called for the purpose of consulting you about the publication of a volume of poems."
“ Mr. Jenkins, would you do me the favour to call upon me any time to-morrow?” said the bibliopole, addressing himself to the author of “ The Universe.” The latter, perceiving at once that this was a hint to withdraw, and leave Mr. Figure to victimize another “poet,” responded to the appeal, by saying he would call again, and immediately walked himself out of the bibliopole's shop.
Mr. Jenkins determines for ever to abjure writing poetry,
and never again to publish on his own account-Wishes to become a parliamentary reporter.
The result of our hero's literary speculation, was a determination never to indite another line of poetry; and never again, in the event of his becoming the author of any prose production, to be his own publisher.
He farther determined that he would not, for some considerable time, again turn his thoughts to authorship of any kind. The little taste he had already had of that, was sufficient to inspire bim with a distaste for it, at least for a season. He saw, judging from the experience he had had, abundant reason to believe, that authorship on his own account, was as likely an expedient as any he could have recourse to, for getting into debt; but he could not perceive the most slender probability of its providing him with the means of living.
With his little resources not only completely exhausted, but having, by his literary adventure, got himself considerably into debt, it became a matter of urgent and absolute necessity, that he should turn his attention to some occupation which would afford him the means of obtaining a certain livelihood, however humble it might be. The only question was, how or where could he meet with such an occupation? As for himself, he was quite bewildered on the subject. He knew not in what direction to turn; he was utterly at a loss as to what sort of employment he ought to apply himself. He eventually resolved on applying to a Mr. Lovegood (with whom he had accidentally met, from whom he had received much kindness, and of whose friendship even to strangers he had heard a great deal) for his counsel in the matter. He was unwilling to apply to that gentleman, knowing he had no claims on him; still he was the only individual in all this vast metropolis, from whom he conceived there was a chance of obtaining assistance, or even friendly advice. Mr. Lovegood was not only remarkable for his kindness of heart, but was, moreover, himself a literary man—the author of various successful workswhich made Joseph calculate still more confidently on his sympathy and friendly counsel. Nor was this all : Mr. Lovegood was also a Christian, in the most comprehensive acceptation of the term. He not only constantly sought to perform right actions, but to perform those actions from proper motives. His was the religion of the thought, as well as the word—of the heart, as well as the life. The good he did was not the result of any desire to obtain the applause of men, but was purely the consequence of a conviction that, in doing all he could to benefit his fellow-creatures, he was discharging an obligation imperatively imposed upon him by the Divine command. The inward conscious
ness that he was doing the will, and, consequently, receiving the approbation, of his Creator, was all the reward he ever sought to obtain for the performance of acts of kindness and benevolence. The judgment of the world was, in no instance, the rule of his conduct. The tribunal by whose decisions he was always guided, was one which had been set up in his own breast,—the tribunal of conscience, enlightened and regulated in all its decisions by the revealed will of the Almighty. To his Maker he felt that he was placed under a solemn and abiding responsibility for everything he did, however trivial his actions might often appear in the eyes of others; and he found, as every one else will find who recognises and makes a conscience of adopting the same principles of action, that this was the surest way to avoid unpleasant circumstances, and to insure his own peace of mind. If men could only be persuaded of the infinite anxiety which one spares himself, by acting according to the rigid rules of right, the most profligate of mankind would become