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Yorktown High School Class of 2002 Reunion Group

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My Repair Skill Became An Almighty Cheat Skill ...


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My Repair Skill Became An Almighty Cheat Skill ...


Being yet in his long Coats, (which heretofore were usually worn beyond the years of Infancy,) he was sent to Eaton School; where his pregnancy having been advantag'd by the more then paternal care and industry of his Father (who was an exact Critick in the learned Languages, especially the Greek) became the observation of those that knew him: for in that tenderness of age he was not only a Proficient in Greek and Latine, but had also some knowledge in the Elements of Hebrew: in the later of which Tongues, it being then rarely heard of even out of Grammar Schools, he grew the Tutor of those who begun [Page 4] to write themselves men, but thought it no shame to learn of one whose knowledge seem'd rather infus'd then acquir'd; or in whom the learned Languages might be thought to be the Mother-Tongue. His skill in Greek was particularly advantag'd by the conversation and kindness of Mr Allen, one of the Fellows of the College, excellently seen in that Language, and a great assistant of Sr Henry Savile in his magnificent edition of St Chrysostome.


In this valley all was rectitude and guileless truth. The hoarse din of war had never reached its happy bosom; its river had never been impurpled with the stain of human blood. Its willows had not wept over the crimes of its inhabitants, nor had the iron hand of tyranny taught care and apprehension to seat themselves upon the brow of its shepherds. They were strangers to riches, and to ambition, for they all lived in a happy equality. He was the richest man among them, that could boast of the greatest store of yellow apples and mellow pears. And their only objects of rivalship were the skill of the pipe and the favour of beauty. From morn to eve they tended their fleecy possessions. Their reward was the blazing hearth, the nut-brown beer, and the merry tale. But as they sought only the enjoyment of a humble station, and the pleasures of society, their labours were often relaxed. Often did the setting sun see the young men and the maidens of contiguous villages, assembled round the venerable oak, or the wide-spreading beech. The bells rung in the upland hamlets; the rebecs sounded with rude harmony; they danced with twinkling feet upon the level green or listened to the voice of the song, which was now gay and exhilarating, and now soothed them into pleasing melancholy.


Of all the sons of the plain, the bravest, and the most comely, was Edwin. His forehead was open and ingenuous, his hair was auburn, and flowed about his shoulders in wavy ringlets. His person was not less athletic than it was beautiful. With a firm hand he grasped the boar-spear, and in pursuit he outstripped the flying fawn. His voice was strong and melodious, and whether upon the pipe or in the song, there was no shepherd daring enough to enter the lists with Edwin. But though he excelled all his competitors, in strength of body, and the accomplishments of skill, yet was not his mind rough and boisterous. Success had not taught him a despotic and untractable temper, applause had not made him insolent and vain. He was gentle as the dove. He listened with eager docility to the voice of hoary wisdom. He had always a tear ready to drop over the simple narrative of pastoral distress. Victor as he continually was in wrestling, in the race, and in the song, the shout of triumph never escaped his lips, the exultation of insult he was never heard to utter. On the contrary, with mild and unfictitious friendship, he soothed the breast of disappointment, and cheered the spirits of his adversary with honest praise.


But as he grew to manly stature, and the down of years had begun to clothe his blushing cheek, he felt a new sensation in his breast hitherto unexperienced. He could not now behold his favourite companion without emotion; his eye sparkled when he approached her; he watched her gestures; he hung upon her accents; he was interested in all her motions. Sometim




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