Mice and martyrdom.
That fine old Anglo-American or Americano-Englishman, R-- S-- , used to tell at his dinnertable in London
this story of a very celebrated English general.
The military hero was once dining with Mr.
S-- , when a stray mouse was seen running to and fro, looking for a hiding-place.
With one spring the general was on his chair; with another, on the table.
Amid much laughter the host rose and proceeded in the direction of the mouse.
“Oh! Stop, S- ,” shouted the man of war; “for Heaven's sake don't exasperate him!”
The exasperated mouse and the intimidated beholders are still on duty, it seems, in Mr. Howells
's good-natured farce, “The mouse-trap;” but the lions are the painters, and the sex is conveniently changed.
Every woman who comes into the room in his little drama takes more or less gracefully to chair or table, when the mouse is announced; and even the Irish domestic follows them, though I have generally found Bridget ready to enforce home rule vigorously on such intruders by the aid of a pair of tongs.