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comfortable fire--doing anything but reading their Bibles, I’ll
answer for it--Heathcliff, myself, and the unhappy ploughboy
were commanded to take our Prayer-books, and mount: we were
ranged in a row, on a sack of corn, groaning and shivering, and
hoping that Joseph would shiver too, so that he might give us a
short homily for his own sake. A vain idea! The service lasted
precisely three hours; and yet my brother had the face to exclaim,
when he saw us descending, ‘What, done already?’ On Sunday
evenings we used to be permitted to play, if we did not make much
noise; now a mere titter is sufficient to send us into corners!

“‘You forget you have a master here,’ says the tyrant. ‘I’ll
demolish the first who puts me out of temper! I insist on perfect
sobriety and silence. Oh, boy! was that you? Frances, darling, pull
his hair as you go by; I heard him snap his fingers.’ Frances pulled
his hair heartily, and then went and seated herself on her
husband’s knee; and there they were, like two babies, kissing and
talking nonsense by the hour--foolish palaver that we should be
ashamed of. We made ourselves as snug as our means allowed in
the arch of the dresser. I had just fastened our pinafores together,
and hung them up for a curtain, when in comes Joseph on an
errand from the stables. He tears down my handiwork, boxes my
ears, and croaks--“‘T’ maister nobbut just buried, and Sabbath
nut o’ered, und t’ sahnd uh t’ gospel still i’ yer lugs, and yah darr
be laiking! shame on ye! sit ye dahn, ill childer! they’s good books
eneugh if ye’ll read ’em: sit ye dahn, and think uh yer sowls!’
“Saying this, he compelled us so to square our positions that we
might receive from the far-off fire a dull ray to show us the text of
the lumber he thrust upon us. I could not bear the employment. I
took my dingy volume by the scroop, and hurled it into the dog

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