While she was pouring out her heart in poem and play, and the Doctor
was riding the errands of the hour and binding up the wounds of Humanity, what, it may be asked,--it was
asked by anxious friends, -was becoming of the little Howes
Why, the little Howes
(there were now five, Maud having been born in November, 1854) were having perhaps the most wonderful childhood that ever children had. Spite of the occasional winters spent in town, our memories centre round Green Peace;--there Paradise blossomed for us. Climbing the cherry trees, picnicking on the terrace behind the house, playing in the bowlingalley, tumbling into the fishpond,--we see ourselves here and there, always merry, always vigorous and robust.
We were also studying, sometimes at school, sometimes with our mother, who gave us the earliest lessons in French and music; more often, in those years, under various masters and governesses.
The former were apt to be political exiles, the Doctor
always having many such on hand, some learned, all impecunious, all seeking employment.. We recall a Pole, a Dane, two Germans, one Frenchman.
The last, poor man, was married to a Smyrniote woman with a bad temper; neither spoke the other's language, and when they quarrelled they came to the Doctor
, demanding his services as interpreter.
Through successive additions, the house had grown to a goodly size; the new part, with large, high-studded rooms, towering above the ancient farmhouse, which nevertheless seemed always the heart of the place.
Between the two was a conservatory, a posy of all sweet