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memory, she added, with the keen irony of a deep
wounded heart :
  "They talk about forget-me-not as if it were some-
thing to be plucked like a flower that is destined to
wither. No wonder they can forget so easily."
  "Ah !" thought Hold, as he went home, "these fine
gentlemen who are attracted by every pretty face, when
they have the simplicity of innocence before them, do
not perceive that the clear crystal is incapable of im-
bibing their poison, and that its purity remains unsul-
lied. Ah, my fine Oswald ! would you first skillfully
prepare the soil with your novels ? But here is no soil
on which such ensnaring plants can take root. This is
God's own garden, and no foul bed of concealed passion.
Maria must long be your pupil before she understands
you and your poison, thereby giving it power to injure
her. And the forget-me-not which blooms in her heart
like a flower in God's paradise, that shalt thou not
pluck so lightly — that shall God's angels protect
against every secret or open attempt to pluck it."
  To spare the father, Hold waited for an opportunity
to return the books to Oswald when no one was pres-
ent ; and said to him, at the same time,
  "Do not suppose I have taken these books from the
young woman. She gave them to me quite of her own
accord because she can not understand such things."
  "I thought," stammered Oswald, with some embar-
rassment, "that a little cultivation would not harm one
for whom nature had done so much."
  "And was it her personal attractions," asked Hold,
seriously, "which first led you to think about her men-
tal culture ? Why then, if you prize this cultivation