"It was Seward's conviction that the policy of non-coercion would have quieted the secession movement in the Border States and that the Gulf States would, after a while, have returned to the union like repentant prodigal sons. His proposal to Lincoln to seek a quarrel with four European nations, who had done us no harm, in order to arouse a feeling of Americanism in the Confederate States, was an outgrowth of this conviction. It was an indefensible proposition, akin to that which prompted Bismarck to make use of France as an anvil on which to hammer and weld Germany together, but it was not an unpatriotic one, since it was bottomed on a desire to preserve the union without civil war."
He comes very slowly back to me, licks my hand, and lifts his dim eyes to my face.
In consequence of the decline of intelligence all complex organization tended to disintegrate. The great national states, the former provinces of the world-empire, fell into hopeless disorder. One by one they crumbled into small quarrelling principalities. These were ever rising and collapsing, coalescing into petty empires, splitting into a score of fragments, passing from the hands of one tyrant to another. Little by little even these small social units decayed into mere tribal territories, each occupying its own valley or plain.
'Generally speaking,' said Miss Murdstone, 'I don't like boys. How d'ye do, boy?'
In 1847 a new interest entered the life of Charlotte Tucker. The three little ones of her brother Robert and his wife,—Louis, Charley, and Letitia,—came to live at No. 3, and were made her especial charge. All of them, but particularly the pretty little dark-eyed Letitia, then only two years old, were thenceforward as her own; first in her thoughts, and among the first in her love. She taught them, trained them, devoted herself to them; and their names will often be found in her letters. The death of Letitia, nearly twenty years later, was one of the heaviest sorrows she ever had to endure. One is disposed to think that the care and responsibility of three little ones, undertaken in the midst of a full and busy family life, and in addition to all the duties of that life, could have been no sinecure, and must have been fraught with many a difficulty.
'The name was Mr. Copperfield's choice,' returned my mother. 'When he bought the house, he liked to think that there were rooks about it.'
Standing there, a "big girl" now, I remembered it all and recognized the sensual itch brought on by a fleeting apprehension-the shiver down the spine, the intuitive gooseflesh that come from the primitive fear-signals of animal ancestors. 1 was amused and I hugged the moment to me. Soon the thunderheads would burst and I would step back from the howl and chaos of the storm into my well-lighted comfortable cave, make myself a drink, listen to the radio, and feel safe and cosseted.