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of the mullioned window, while the son, booted and spurred, stood by him, and looked from time to time restlessly through the window into the court, in which a noble bay horse, held by a servant, stood tossing his proud head, and rattling the chains of bit and curb. The futile talk exhausted itself; the father turned wearily to his book, while the son, with an cager and elastic step, passed out of the room into the court, and mounting lightly into the saddle, whistled to his dogs, and rode away into the July day. Fair shone the summer sun on lovely, leafy Kent, as the young horseman galloped gaily towards his tryst of love; sadly streamed the sunbeams on the bowed form of the pale father, who, in the still noon, forgot to read, and sat with clasped handsthinking, thinking,—thinking.

Francis Grey, the father, a poor gentleman of fallen fortunes, was a sad and soured man. Long a, widower, he loved his only son intensely, though with a weak and selfish fondness. He had for many years withdrawn from all active struggle with a world in which he lacked force to push his fortunes. The family had suffered heavily, and had lost title, wealth, and land, in the Wars of the Roses. Once depressed, it had remained unfortunate. It had not produced since its first declension a man of mark or energy enough to raise it to its former greatness. Francis Grey lived on dreamily in his old hall of Greyscote, though only a portion of the great house was inhabited, while neglect and decay slowly saddened or beautified the once stately mansion. His establishment consisted of a few old servants, and his stables contained more stalls than horses. Round about Greyscote the county was studded with the splendid

homes of more prosperous and more wealthy families; but Francis Grey, a proud, reserved man, brooding moodily and morbidly over his fallen fortunes, rather shunned intercourse with his wealthy and powerful neighbours. The Greys were related by marriage or consanguinity to the Sidneys of Penshurst, and to the Pembrokes of Wilton ; though Francis Grey, querulous and inert, resenting secretly the prosperity of others, and feeling irritably his own decadence, did not keep up much intercourse with his renowned relatives. He had been, in his youth, a somewhat studious man; and retaining a lingering love for scholarship, he still killed time through many a long, calm hour by reading Latin authors, in the stagnant stillness of life in weary, sleepy Greyscote.

Vainly would the archæologist or the poet now search for Greyscote. The old hall exists no more. It passed into the hands of other lords than those who, for so many generations, had lived and ruled there. Sorely damaged in the Parliamentary wars, fire completed the ruin which assault began; and in the reign of Charles II, the old house was burned to the ground. The only traces now left of the once stately ancestral home are a few stumps of grey ruined wall standing up in fields, and overgrown with ivy. The house is gone, and its place knows it no more. The house had, it is probable, been originally a moated manor-house, or walled grange, dating from that Edwardian epoch in which the gentry who stood below the great nobles built mansions which were not wholly castles. It may have occupied the site of an earlier castle—destroyed, perhaps, in the struggles of the Roses wars. It had been greatly added to and altered in the days of Henry VII., when one

Walter de Grey brought great wealth to his house by marriage. He would seem, however, to have spent his money in building, since his three successors, including the father and the grandfather of Francis Grey-were poor men, who made no mark in life. The house in the years which preceded the death of Queen Elizabeth combined characteristics which may be in part suggested to readers of this day by a combination of Penshurst, or a small Knole, based upon Ightham manor house. Greyscote was half grange, half court.

The son whom we have seen riding away from the Hall was Herbert Grey, so named after his godfather, William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke. Herbert Grey had all the energy which his father lacked. He had · those qualities which might either form or restore the fortunes of a house, and he longed to repair Greyscote and to renew its glories. Strong and active, fond of riding, of fencing, and of all knightly exercise, Master Herbert had in him also a touch of love for the sonnet, and was especially fond of the Arcadia of his great kinsman and neighbour of Penshurst, and of that anatomy of wit, the Euphues of John Lyly. Herbert was full of youth, of noble young enthusiasms, forces, desires. He might have sat to Shakspeare as a model for Bassanio, or to Scott as a suggestion for a knightly young cadet of romance. Though fond of poetry, he had, nevertheless, no tendency to spend half his nights and all his days in a cell, to get a dark, pale face, and to come forth worth the ivy and the bays. Thrilling with life, he longed for action. He dreamed of sailing with Drake or Raleigh, of fighting against Spain and Rome in the Low Countries; and he always thought, with the thought natural to an Englishman in days in which the ancestral home was the centre of life, of returning, after winning knighthood, to settle at Greyscote, which should once more blaze with light and bray with minstrelsy. The lad's education had been desultory, though not badly suited to develop his character. He had been brought up in early youth by a tutor indoors, and by a huntsman in the open air.

At sixteen-for men went early to college in the days of Elizabeth—he was entered at Corpus Christi, Cambridge. He passed with fair distinction through his academic career, though his renown was as great for sports, for sword-play, or for inditing an occasional sonnet, as it was for the classics. Herbert had in him a strong strain of romance, and a deeply-seated, enthusiastic patriotism. He dreamed of love, and he longed for adventure, with the quaint ardour characteristic of his age and day. His ideal hero was Sir Philip Sidney. Popular as Sir Philip was with all noble English youth, Herbert took in him the nearer interest of relationship. He remembered well what little he had seen in his boyhood of Sidney. He remembered also how the “heavens were hung with black," and gloom fell upon all England, when, in 1585, the news came home of the early and heroic death of the poet-soldier at Zutphen. Youth, in Elizabeth's time, did not want for high ideals or for noble models.

In those days life in English country-houses lived its daily course very quietly and leisurely. The great clock in the turret ticked, the sunshine slanted in the court, the snow lay upon the roof, and day succeeded day in monotonous stillness and calm. Public news travelled slowly, and home events were few. The father was restless with querulous discontent; the son, when he returned from college, was eager with longings for action. In Herbert's boyhood he had looked wistfully after the gentle knight as Sir Philip rode away on horseback from Penshurst to London. Herbert became restless at home; he longed to go to London; he thought that in London he could not fail to make a career and to win a name. In London was the court, the playhouse, the tiltyard. From London started the great captains for war by land or sea. To London were attracted all ambitious and enterprising spirits, and to London Herbert longed more strongly day by day to go. His father could not bear to part with his son; he postponed decision and kept the youth at home in still and lonely Greyscote, which Herbert filled with the yearnings of active and dreaming youth. He sported, rode, and read; he pined and fretted and wearied; until, in the opening of his twentieth year, love came to the young student of the Arcadia and the Sonnets, and stirred up life to sweet but turbulent unrest.

Master Herbert had placed his love highly, as beseemed a young dreamer of romance.

It was placed indeed too high for hope. Fair Mistress Lettice, then nearly the same age as Herbert, was the daughter of old Sir Robert Heygate of Holmswood, and was one of the richest heiresses in the county.

The position of an heiress, temp. Elizabeth, was that of a great prize, as Portia was in Belmont.

If the four winds did not blow in from every sea renowned suitors to Lettice Heygate, yet Kent, and even the adjacent counties, furnished pretenders enough for a hand so fair and so full: although

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