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been averred to me that I should do injustice to South Africa generally if I did not visit the prettiest scenery known in South Africa. Having done so I feel that I should have done injustice at any rate to myself if I had not taken the advice given me.

Of all the beneficent Institutions of Mossel Bay which I have named I became personally acquainted with but one, the Resident Magistrate, who was so beneficent that at a moment's notice he offered to make the trip to the Knysna with me. By this I gained a guide, philosopher, and friend,-and a very pleasant companion for my excursion. In such tourings solitude will often rob them of all delight, and ignorance of all instruction. It is impossible to see the things immediately under the eye, unless there be some one to tell you where to look for them. A lone wanderer may get up statistics, and will find persons to discuss politics with him in hotel parlours and on the seats of public conveyances. He may hear, too, the names of mountains and of rivers. But of the inner nooks of social life or of green hills he will know nothing unless he can fall into some intimacy, even though it be short-lived, with the people among whom he is moving.

We had to be in a hurry because a Cape Colony Resident Magistrate cannot be absent long from his seat of justice. If he be not on the spot there is no one to whom misfortune can appeal or whom iniquity need dread. In an English town a Mayor has his aldermen, and the Chairman of the Bench his brother magistrates;—but at Mossel Bay the Resident is as necessary at ten o'clock on a Monday morning as is the Speaker to the House of Commons at four o'clock in the afternoon. So we started at once with a light cart and a pair of horses,—which

was intended to take us as far as George, a distance of 30 miles.

We went through a country teeming with ostriches. Ostrich-farming on a great scale I will describe further on. Here the work was carried on in a smaller way, but, as I was told, with great success. The expenses were small, and the profits very great,-unless there should come misfortunes, as when a valuable bird will break his leg and so destroy himself, or when a hen supposed to be worth £50 or £60 won't lay an egg. I think that in ostrich-farming, as in all commercial pursuits, the many little men who lose a little money,—perhaps their little all,—and then go quietly to the wall, attract less attention than the prosperous few. I am bound however to say that in this district I saw many ostriches and heard of much success.

As evening was coming on, when we had got half way to George, we found that our horses were knocked up. We stopped therefore at a woolwashing establishment, and sent round the country to beg for others. Here there was also a large shop, and a temperance hotel, and an ostrich farm, all kept by the same person or by his son. Word came to us that all the horses in the place had done, each of them, an extra hard day's work that day; but, so great a thing is it to be a Resident Magistrate, that in spite of this difficulty two horses were promised us! But they had to be caught. So we walked up to see the woolwashers finish their day's work, the sun having already set.

Their mode of woolwashing was quite new to me. The wool, which seemed to have been shorn in a very rough manner,--cut off in locks after a fashion which would have broken the heart of an Australian Squatter, wool chopped as you would chop a salad,-was first put South Africa. I.

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into a square caldron of boiling, or nearly boiling water. Then it was drawn out in buckets, and brought to troughs made in a running stream, in which the dirt was trodden out of it by coloured men. These were Hottentots, and Negroes, the children of the old slaves,—and one or two Kafirs from the East. The wool is then squeezed and laid out on drying grounds to dry. The most interesting part of the affair was the fact that these coloured men were earning 4s. 6d. a day wages each. Some distance further on the next day we came on two white men,-navvies,—who were making a dam and were earning only Is. 7d. a day, and their diet. That might together be worth 2s. 6d. They explained to us that they had found it very hard to get any job, and had taken this almost in despair. But they wouldn't have trod the wool along with the black men, even for 4s. 6d.

Just as the night was set in we started at a gallop with our tired horses. I know so well the way in which a poor weary brute may be spirited up for five minutes; not, alas, without the lash. A spur to a tired horse is like brandy to a worn-out man. It will add no strength, but it will enable the sufferer to collect together and to use quickly what little remains. We had fifteen miles to do, and wearily, with sad efforts, we did twelve of them. Then we reached a little town, Blanco, and were alive with hopes of a relay. But everybody in Blanco was in bed, and there was nothing for us but to walk, the driver promising that if we would allow the poor animals twenty minutes to look about them, they would be able to crawl on with the cart and our portmanteaus. And so we

walked on to George, and found our dinner of mutton chops ready for us at eleven o'clock. A telegram had been sent on so that a vehicle might be prepared for us before daybreak on the morrow.

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As I entered George, the geographers I believe call the place Georgetown, but the familiar name is George, -by star light, just able to discern the tops of the mountains above it, I felt that it was a pretty place. On the following morning, as I walked up and down its socalled principal street, waiting between 5 and 6, for the wicked mules which were an hour late, I swore that it was the prettiest village on the face of the earth,-the prettiest village at any rate that I had ever seen. Since that I have moderated my enthusiasm so far that I will admit some half a dozen others to the same rank. George will probably resent the description, caring more for its importance than its prettiness. George considers itself to be a town. It is exactly what in England we would describe to be a well-to-do village. Its so-called street consists of a well made broad road, with a green sward treble the width of the road on each side. And here there are rows of oak trees,—real English oak trees, planted by some most beneficent because patient inhabitant of the earlier days. A man who will plant a poplar, a willow, or even a blue-gum in a treeless country, -how good is he! But the man who will plant an oak will surely feel the greenness of its foliage and the pleasantness of its shade when he is lying down, down beneath the sod!

In an English village there are gentlemen's houses, and cottages, and shops. Shops are generally ugly, particularly shops in a row, and the prettiness of a village will depend mostly on the number of what may be called gentlemen's houses, and on the grouping of them. Cottages may be lovely to look at;-sometimes are; but it is not often. 15s. a week and roses form a combination which I have seen, but of which I have read in poetry much more than I have seen. Perhaps the ugliest col

lection of ruined huts I ever visited was "Sweet Auburn, loveliest village of the plain." But the pretty English villages will have a parson, a doctor, an officer's widow, a retired linen-draper, and perhaps the Dowager Squiress, living in houses of different patterns, each standing in its own garden, but not so far from the road as to stand in its own ground. And there will be an inn, and the church of course, and probably a large brick house inhabited by some testy old gentleman who has heaps of money and never speaks to any body. There will be one shop, or at the most two, the buying and selling of the place being done in the market-town two miles off. In George the houses are all of this description. No two are alike. They are all away from the road. They have trees around them. And they are quaint in their designs, many of them having been built by Dutch proprietors and after Dutch patterns. And they have an air of old fashioned middle class comfort,-as though the inhabitants all ate hot roast mutton at one o'clock as a rule of their lives. As far as I could learn they all did.

There are two churches,-a big one for the Dutch, and a little one for the English. Taking the village and the country round, the Dutch are no doubt in a great majority; but in George itself I heard nothing but English spoken. Late on a Sunday evening, when I had returned from the Knysna, I stood under an oak tree close to the corner of the English church and listened to a hymn by star light. The air was so soft and balmy that it was a pleasure to stand and breathe it. It was the longest hymn I ever heard; but I thought it was very sweet; and as it was all that I heard that Sunday of sacred service, I did not begrudge its length. But the South Africans of both colours are a tuneful people in their worship.

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