A BIT THICK. "What did you nMan who(n you wrote 'The people of London are very stupid' T "That's what you told us yesterday, sir." "What: 1 told you?" "Yesair. You said the population of Lon- don was very dense."
OUR LONDON LETTER. 1 [From <3u. Speial Correspondent.,] Some p<ople have wondered why there wai no State oppning of Parliament, with Speech, debate on the Address, and so en. It is perfectly simple. This was not th-j opening of a new session, but merely a con- tinuation of the session, which was formally opened in November. It is, of course, quite for a new session to be opened <. t the end of the year, but the circum- &tances were exceptional. The Christmas recess" for the House of Commons has lasted over two months, while the Peers divided their holiday into two parts, meet- ing for a week in January in order to hear a statement from Lord Kitchener as to the progress of the campaign, and to try and draw" the War Minister and other members of the Government on the question of recruiting', in which they weao unsuccess- ful. Lord Kitchener gave their lordships no ngures, though he expressed his satisfac- tion with the way things were going. „ Attendances at Westminster will not be large, for at least one-third of the members of -both Chambers are on active service. Bread continues to go up in price. At Guildford this week it has risen to Sd. the four-pound loaf. If the price increases at this rate we shall soon be touching Crimean level. There seems to be some difference of opinion as to what that level was. I was told the other day that it was tenpenM; a newspaper article informed me that it was one shilling; while an old lady haa told an interviewer that she used to pay one-and- fourppnc?. Nobody, however, is really anxious to equal the Crimean record, no matter which figure may be correct; eight- pence is as high as anybody really wants to go. though a. further rise is quite possible. Then there is the question of coal. That, too, is increasing in price at an alarming rate. For the .-ery poor, who buy their ccala in small quantities, the price is a! ready prohibitive. The South Metro- politan Gas Company has circularised its customers, pointing out that shipowners are charging far more for freightages than there is any justification for, and recom- mending that all these receiving the circular should urge their local members of Parlia- ment to bring pressure to bear upon the Government to take action which would re- duce freights. Church parade Is a more interesting func- tion nowadays than it has been for years Many well-known Society folk since the wai began have given up the habit of going out of town for the week-end. Doubtless this is owing to the system of giving the soldiers week-end holidays, which can be spent more conveniently in London than elsewhere. Officers back from the front for a few hours eujoy the usual Society round which Lon. don alone is able to give them. So churet parade has regained something of its former glory. There are wives with soldier husbands, sisters with soldier brothers, and girls with soldier sweethearts, relieved for a time from that anxiety for the safety of loved ones which is so large a part of woman's share in the war. The wearing anxiety will begin again to-morrow when the soldiers go back once more to the nght- ing, but for the present there is only love and joy and pride-and this, at any rate, ia a day to be remembered always. The tubes are gradually enteading. The Bakerloo, which outgrew its name long ago, has now outgrown it more than ever. In- stead of running from Baker-street to Waterloo, it now carries passengers from the Elephant and Castle to Eilburn Park. and before long it will take them right out to Watford. This will be accomplished by means of the electrification of the London and North-Western main line as far as Wat- ford, which is nearing completion. It will be possible, when the extension is finished, to go down into the bowels of the earth to escape from a South London fog fthan which there is nothing foggier), and come out into clear air and sunshine in the meadows of Middlesex and Hertfordshire without the trouble of changing carriages. Tube railways have developed remarkably in London during the past few years. A good many people are under the impression that the first tube railway was the Central London, from the Bank to Shepherd's Bueh —the Twopenny Tube, as it was called iu its early days because the fare was two- pence for any distance—but there had already been a tube railway iu existence for ten years. This was the v City and South London, which was opened between Stock- well and the Bank in 1890. There will be no county cricket champion ship this year. This is the first break in ths series since the championship was inau- gurated forty-two years ago. The decision of the Advisory Cricket Committee was ex- pected indeed, it would have been im- possible to carry on the competition, owing to the fact that so many cricketers have answered the country's call and are serving with the colours. Most of the counties have only the framework of a team. It is prob- able, however, that we shall not be entirely without first-class cricket. Neighbouring counties will very likely be able to fix up matches with one another. Yorkshire and Lancashire, for instance, are expected tc give each other and their supporters a game or tv.'u. All the counties are advised that "owing to existing circumstances it -must make tile be.- ? must make the best arrangement it can, having regard to such circumstances and the representations of the professionals, but it is thought that the professionals should di what they can to help the counties over the crisis." With regard to cricket outside the championship, no steps have yet been taken, everything depending- on the war. So far as can be ascertained at present, it appears that horse-racing is about the only sport that will be carried on as usual. The Derby and Ascot will be held, but there will be no Boat Race, no Henley Regatta, polo, no Wimbledon lawn tennis cham- pionships, and most likely no golf cham- pionships. Was Beethoven or Brahms the attraction which drew such a vast audience to the Queen's Hall on Saturday? Probably it was Beethoven. The programme included two of "tho Nine" Symphonies, the Fifth and the Seventh, as well as the finest of the "Leonora" overtures. No. 3. Brahms was represented by tha double concerto for the violin and violoncello, a work of very great interest which was beautifully played by Mr. Maurice Sous and Madamc Guilhermina Suggia. Madame Suggia is a Portuguese arti&t, and ex-King Manoel and Queen Amelie of Portugal were among the audience. The two Beethoven Symphonies were very finely played—it is almost impos- sible to imagine a finer performance than that cf the beautiful Seventh Symphony. A. E. M.
u A correspoudfnt of the Dutch -)ournaL, Vaderland. who recently visited Ger- many, declares that after the war the Ger- jnan hi?h schools and universities wiU be nloiost depopulated. Of the 2,GOO stuJ<'nt. of the Technical University of Chr!otten- I burg aloae, only 200 are not killed. -wounded, or missing. The "Revue des 'Deux Mondes" frankly acknowledges that it was a great miatake on the part of the French to doubt the strict neutrality of the Dutch. "Holland is loyally fulfilling' her obligations of neu- trality, and considering her topographical situation, there is, perhaps, more merit in this than in the case of other countries."
I I EXHAUSTED NATURE. I I SOLDIERS SLEEP AFTER TERRIBLE EXERTIONS. The French temporary check at Soissona, magnified into a great victory by the eager mendacity of German communique's, was, ad everyone knows, due to the sudden rise of the Aisne and the breaking of the pontoon bridges, which, in spite of the tireless heroism of the French engineers, could not be repaired in sunicient strength to allow reinforcemeits to cro"g the liver. From the "Petit Marseillais" comes an echo of theee acts of heroism. I kave it (says the Paris correspondent of the "Daily Telegraph") as the writer gave the Btory from what he had seen in a neld hospital. "He is an engineer. He was brought here on the night of the 14th, picked up half-drowned on the banks of the Aisne. When found he was unconscious, and only recovered from his faint to fall into a deep, irresistible, lethargic slumber. In the ambulance motor he slept. He did not awaken when taken from it and laid in the ambulance camp bed. After five days he is still sleeping—.not a. spot of colour iu his hollow cheeks, the nostrils pinched as though by invisible fingers, the lips bloodlesa and tightly locked. He sleeps almost without breathing—on)y a glass placed to his lips be- comes tarnished, so tbet one knows it is not the last sleep of all. Twice a day, with in- finite precaution, doctor and nurse unlock the clenched teeth and feed him with a drop or two of broth. When they do so he makes a weak, pathetic movement, and groans faintly. Then he falls into his strange slumber once more. He has no wound, no disease. He is simply worn out,' the doctor says. He is one of those heroes who survi ved the terrible struggle for four mortal nights and days against the rise of the Aisne. Twenty times during these terrible hours they were on the poiiilt of triumphing over the blind force of the waters, and twenty times they failed, only to begin again the heartbreaking, Sisyphean task. For four days and three nights they laboured up to the waist in water, eating little and sleep- ing not for a moment. Daily their ranks grew thinner. Some died of exhaustion, others lost footing and were swept away." It is pleasant to know that the survivor, the young sapper, who has been sleeping as not one of the seven ever slept, is going to recover. His doctor, hujnanly speaking, guarantees thut.
I EXPERIENCED. "I "card as 'ow you wanted a. boater, guv'nor." gt "Yea, I do. Have you had any experience as n. beater?" "Lor, yes, sir! I used to 'elp my uncle in the carpet-beatin' line."
THE LUCKIEST OF ALL When the Princess Mary's Christmas gifts for the mc)i at the front were being packed her Royal Highness went down to the warehouse at Deptford to watch th packing' and placed a slip of paper in one of the braas boxes. On the slip were these words:— "This box was packed by Her Royal High- nC:<3 the Princess Mary. The recipient should acknowledge its receipt to Her Royal High- ness the Princes.-) Mary, Buckingham Palace." The s'ip has been returned to Buckingham Palace. On it were written just the simple words:— "Thank you. Received by me, 9780 Private Fitzgerald, "B" Company, Royal Munster Fusilier: A note added by the quartermaster-sergeant said that the boxes were handed to Private Fitzgerald and his comrades on Christmas night when the rations were eent up to the trenches.
'A DISGRACE TO HIS TOWN.' Hugh Roberts, a quarryman, was lined 30g. at Peruhyn Deudraeth, Merionethshire, for spreading' a statement to prejudice recruiting. The proceedings were taken under the Defence of the Realm Act. It was stated that two recruits were walk- ing alon? tr3 street with a recruiting oincer when Rf<Lx'rt3 shouted, "Don't be silly, bo vs. Come ba.c: Don't go with him." The recruits, however, simply smiled. Sir Osmond Williams, a magistrate, said that Robert. v/as a disgrace to hie town and to his country.
I "ALL THAT WAS LEFT OF THEM." "Good gracious! Perkina, where are aU lÈ-e cigar'cUes I left in this box?" 1 ?"1 haven't touched one, sir." I "But there's only one leit." r-e s, sir; that's Hue one I haven't touched!"
The Gazette de Holla nde," commenting on the recent German air raid, says it is clearly demonstrated, that Zeppelins can cross the North Sea, but "the Germans will be greatly disappointed by the fact that their Air-Dreadnoughts' can only accom- plish such slight damage." The Mayor of Stoke Newington (GcnncH- lor Ormond) is making an appeal for black hats and other mourning apparel for the widows of local soldiers and sailors who have lost their lives at the front or on the high seas. It is meeting with a sympathetic Tesponee from resi-dcnts in the district.
Turpentine is one of the most useful ct washing aid.5. It will loosen dirt without the slightest injury to fabrics. A good way of stiffening the bristles o) hairbrushes after washing is to dip the") into a mixture of equal quantities of ni 'Iii and water, and then dry before the fire. To remove a nsh-bone from the throat, swallow a raw egg. and follow, if possible, by eating plenty of mashed potatoes. The eL,, I will carry the bone into the stomach, aud the potatoes will prevent it from doing any injury there. Soda should be thoroughly dissolved in the washing water before the clothes arc put in. Never allow it to lie about on the clothes, as this sometimes causes ironmould. .'oda should never be added to water in which woollen things are being washed, as it causes them to shrink. Polished floors should be rubbed with a mixture of one-third raw linseed-oil and two-thirds paramn. Use it sparingly, or the polishing attprwards with a dry cloth wili be a long business. For polishing bra.ss bedsteads there is no more reliable medium than the old-fashioned whitening v.'et with household ammonia, v.hich is less apt to scratch than most other preparations. To prevent blue spotting the clothes, put some on a piece of white cloth, gather up the corners, and tie together. Dip this bag in the water, then squeeze it until the water is blue enough. To PREVENT EiTCHEN ODOURS. I Before beginning to fry onions or bolt a cabbage see that the kitchen window is open at the top, and also draw back the gracing above the stove, even if this is only open a little way the smell from whatever is being cocked will have a- means of escape, instead of tilling the kitchen and penetrat- ing to other parts of the house. If this is forgotten, it is a good plan to have some c.'dar wood dust at hand to use, a little scattered over the hot stove gives off a pleasant odour, which will prevent the smells from being noticeable. I-ITKSTAIN.S ON BOOKS, j Inkstains may be removed from paper in the following manner. Firat wash the paper with warm water, ThSing a. camels-hair brush ,?,v i t h m-ariii water, 116int E i a means the surface for the purpose. By this meana the surface i'lk is removed, and the mark should then be moistened with oxalic acid, in the pro- portion of one ounce to half a pint of water. ibe inkstains will immediately disappear. Finally, again wash the stained place with clean water, and dry with white blotting- paper. Greai care must be taken, however, in the use of oxalic acidj as it is a very da.ng'erous poison. To MAKE NiGHT LIGHTS. I Night lights are usually made of ccrasin, cr of a mixture of ceraein or paramn with stearic acid, the latter being in the pro- portion of from five to ten per cant. These tights are moulded, the wick being placed in the mould, or afterwards put in attached to a piece of tinplate. The lights are then placed in small cardboards cases; they are used in a saucer of water. The moulds may be cast in metal; for small quantities they may be made like bullet moulds, to open in two parts; but for larger quantities they may be in the form of shallow troughs with circular depressions and plungers to force the lights out after they are co'd; the latter would be preferable. Night lights weigh- ing !OZ" oz,. loz., and upwards may be made, and by burning these it will be easy to find the size of light that will burn nine hours. ECONOMICAL HOUSEHOLD SiNT. I To keep rooms warm as cheaply as pos- sible, take cobbly coal, slack, or even saw- dust one part, sand, any kind, two parts, clay or marl one part. Mix all together with wat-er until thick as paste, make into small blocks. Put the blocks on top of the tire, above the bars. This will be found to give a great heat and last a coMiderable time if not disturbed. To CLEAN A GAS STOVE. I The gas stove should be cleaned once every week. Remove all bars, and wash in strong soda water. Wash the top of the stove and clean burners, cleaning out the little holes with a fine skewer or piece of wire. Wash the shelves, and clean any enamel linings with rough salt. Blacklead the bars, and polish the brass taps, rub up steel portions with emery powder. SOME USEFUL RECIPES. I OATMEAL PUDDING.—This is very cheap, and as nourishing as a meat pie. Peel four or five onions and drop them into cold water. Put three ounces of dripping into a bowl and place it on the stove to melt. Chop the onions, drain well, and stir into the melted dripping; add half a pound of oat- meal and stir into the dripping and onions till thoroughly mixed. Season with pepper and salt. Wring out a pudding cloth in hot water, flour with oatmeal, pour in the mix- ture, tic lightly, and boil for three hours. Turn out and serve with boiled potatoes. SEED CAKE.—Use a quartern of dough left from making bread; set it in a basin before the fire to rise, first covering it with a cloth. Beat half a pound of butter or dripping to a cream, work it into the dough, and add three-quarters of a pound of moist sugar, one ounce of carraway seeds, and one well beaten egg. Knead the dough well; put it into one large or two small baking-tins, set them to stand before the fire to rise, then bake in a well-heated oven. Time to bake, two hours. If made with dripping the cake costs about fivepence per pound. CHEESE FRITTERS.—Pound in a Dtortar, until quite smooth, two ounces of grated cheese, add a seasoning of grated ham, a tablespoonful of fine breadcrumbs, some mustard, and cayenne to taste. Work these together into a paste \\ith half an ounce of butter and the yoi. of an egg until thoroughly mixed. Form the paste into thin nat cakes the size of a crown piece. Make a batter as for pancakes; dip the cheese biscuits in it, and fry them a golden brown i'i boiling fat. Serve on a napkin very hot. Grated dry cheese should be sprinkled over the cakes. This is a very nice savoury. NORFOLK PUDDING.—Take three-quarters of a pound of nour, six ounces of chopped suet, a teaspoonful of ground ginger, and two ounces of raisins stoned and chopped. Add to these a heaped-.up teaspoonfnl of baking powder; then mix together four tablespoonfuls of golden syrup and one gill of milk. Stir this into the dry ingredienta and beat the mixture for a few minutes. Pour into a well-greased basin, cover v/ith a cloth, and boil for three hours. Turn out on to a hot dish and serve with hot treacle and sauce. FRENCH PuDDixo.—Take half a pound of nour, a quarter of a pound of suet, a small teacupful of moist sugar, a teaspoonful of baking powder, half a pound of golden syrup, also a little milk. See the suet is free from sk'n, and chop it nne mix it with nour, add sugar, baking powder, and golden syrup. Mix very thoroughly, add a little milk to form a thick batter. Butter a pudding basin. Pour the mixture into it, cover with a buttered paper, and steam for not lesa than three h\)urs. Turn out of basin and serve at once.
Sergeant Paul Marehand, a reservist in the 5th Infantry, probably holds the record for a number of wounds. On Sfpt&mber 17 he was wounded in the head and the next day he was at Couroy, when he was struck by 196 pieces of shell in the face, legs, and chest. He is now out of hospital, but ha.- )ost both his eyes and one linger of his right hand.
I BRITISH NAVAL GUNNERY, I WHAT HITTING AT 17,000 YARDS MEANS. "We began to hit at 17,000 yards." So said Sir David Beatty in his preliminary de- spatch. It is worth while to ponder over this statement and consider what it means. Up to about ten years ago (says the "Pall Mall Gazette") gunnery practice in the British Fleet consisted almost wholly in the training of the eye of the gun-layer, and the practice of the loading-numbers in the rapid handling of the ammunition and brppch mechanism. Then came the era of Sir John Fisher and Sir Percy Scott, of big guns and scientihc nre-control. "Battle- practice tvas substituted for prize-firing, while the individual skill -of the gunner was still fostered by the gun-layer's test" at shorter ranged The object of battle-prac- tice is that the ship's company may learn to work together as a whole, on the prin- ciple that a ship, for nghting purposes, is a gun-carriage and nothing more. Ths cap- tain, gunnery lieutenant, quartermaster, engineer-commander, and stoker, all co- operate with the guns crews with the one object of hitting the target. Now, 17,000 yards is not far short of te-n land miles; about as far as from Baker- street to Harrow. A battle-cruieer is about 700ft. long and 90ft. wide-that is to say, she is about half as long again as St. Paul's, but only half as wide. Her hull stands up about 30ft. from the water forward and abmt 20ft. aft. She travels through the water at about Half a mile a minute, and at 10,000 yards a shell takes eight seconds to reach her. It has to rise to a height which would easily clear two Snowdons piled 01 the top of one another, and descend on a space represented by height of hull out of water plus beam—that is to say, about 110ft.-120ft.. Moreover, the speed of the two ships has to be nicely calculated, and the "error of the day," which is a complicated thing, ascertained by reference to barometer, thermometer, and hygrometer, since cordite does not behave the same in all tempera- tures, and refraction is greater in some states of atmosphere than others. So that 's what "beginning to hit at 17,000 yards" involves, and when you have learned to chuck a camel through the eye of a needle you will begin to understand what It meann. That the British Fleet can perform this m:racle is, in the main, due to four men, though it must not be suppo&ed that to mention them is to ignore the excellent work of others. The four are: Admiral-of- the-Fleet Lord Fisher of Kilverstone, Vice- Admiral Sir Percy Scott, Admiral Sir John Jellicoe, and Captain F. C. Dreycr.
SPIRIT OF THE NAVY. I ADMIRAL JELLICOE'S TRIBUTE. I Ladv Jellicoe was on Saturday to have de- clared open at Leyton a club for the use ci the relatives of soldiers and sailers, but, in her absence through indisposition, the cerc- J tnonv was performed by Mrs. Levei,6cil. wife of Admiral Leverson. By Lady Jcllicoc', desire she read & letter recently sent from the Iron Duke by Admiral Sir John Jellicoe to his wife, in which he s&id:— Our troops covered themselves with glory during the war. The Navy has not vet as a. whole had an opportunity of showing that the old spirit which ca.rrieu us to victory in the past is with us now, but where our men have had the oppor tunity of fighting the foe above the wate: they have shown that they possess the same pluck and endurance as cur com- rades ashore. Nothing can ever have been nner than the coolness and courage shown in every case where ships have been sunk by minet? or torpedoes; discipline has been perfect, and men have gone to their death, not only most gallantly, but most unaelnshly. One heard on all sides of numerous in- stances of men giving up on these occa- sions the plank which supported them to some more feeble comrade, and I feel prouder every day that passes that I corn m a nd such n en. During the period of waiting and watch- ing they are cheerful and contented, in spite of the grey dulness of their HvBS. t am sure you will tell the wives and children and sisters of our men of the spirit that prevails, and I know that it will maks them all desire to show in thei:' lives that they are dominated by the same spirit to do the best they can for their country, so that they may be worthy of their menkind, of whom it is impossible to say too much. The reading of the letter was greeted witi: kmd cheering.
FOOD PRICES MANIFESTO. 1 —— <-—— THE DEMANDS OF LABOUR. I The Management Committee of th<* General Federation of Trade Unions, in a manifec-to on the high prices of food, issued on Saturday, declares the procedure of the. Prize Courts must be expedited, all cap- tured ship's must be utilised by the State to transport supplies purchased directly frotG producers, and such supplies must be placed Ulibn markets at prices to cover only cost:* and distributive charge.s. The Government must act, and the whole country will sup port remedial action, no matter how drastic. The Iron and Steel Shipyard Workers Society has sent a demand to the ship- builders of the federated area asking for an advance of wages of 2s. per week on time rates and 5 per cent. on piece rates. The demand is based on the increased prices of fcod.stuNs and the shortage of available labour. The various branches of railwaymen at Birmingham have passed a resolution ask- ing the National Union to call the executive committee together, and to place on the agenda paper a resolution in favour of an immediate advance in wages of 5s. per week, to date from January 1. The executive council of the National Transport Workers' Federation has decided to call an emergency conference of the various ?,ffilia6ed unions for the purpose of considering the necessary measures to obtain such an advance of wages amongst the transport workers as to meet the in- creased cost of living. The London, Man- chester, Liverpool, Glasgow, and Hull unions have already reported to the federa- tion as to the conditions prevalent upon the increased cost of food. There are twenty- eight unions in the federation, and the com- bined membership is about 400,000.
THE SIEGE OF PARIS. I AH the animals in the Parisian Zoo in 1870—Borne forty-nve years ago—during the si-ege of Paris were slaughtered. Bear Bteaks and elephant cutlets were regarded as the gr,(,ate.,t of luxuries, after the ordi- nary courts of tb menu of the fannyaid dc. scription had long finec- become unpurch;1..s- aMf. The prices tha- poutiry and otliqr articles fetched seem beyond belef. Turkey- co-st 100 francs (.,E4) each, and upwards. A goo-se would fetch 60 francs, while a sovc- reis'n was the price for .'t little fowl. Vege- tables v/erc 'equally expensive, and tho&e who indulged iu the luxury of carrots, turnips, and potat&es had to pay as much ae, hvepencc each for the two nr.?t-named, while the common or garden; "spud" would febch as much as a couple of pounds ster- ling per bushel. The feline quadruped waa in great demand, and cats were d:i:wuised in many a pie as rabbits, while the flesh of dogs was worth Tialf-a-crown a pound, and <M horses three to four shillings.
Miss Macdonald, a lady doctor in the I Public Health service, has ignored the L.C.C marriage ban, and now asks that;, as her husband is serving with the colours, she mav be able, in spite of the regulation, to retain her situation. In the eirmimstaiiecs the Council suggests that the lady shall retain her employment until after the war.
Arum Lilies.—These may be had in bloom from Chr' stna, to Easter. The plants are now forcing their flower spikes, and will de- rive benefit from Tegular light applications of liquid manure and 800t water, which may be given atteruatety. A temperature of nfty-nve degrees is sumcient to guard against attacks of greenny. Lilium longi- Sorum succeeds under similar conditions; do not allow them to become too wet at the roots, however, and stake'the plants as soon as they uoed support. To have them in bloom for Easter grow them in a cool atmo- sphere. :tI¡ < Cypripediums.—Plants of the Itisigne sec- ti'on are frequently grown by amateurs, and this is a capital season for repotting and dividing any that require attention. By splitting up large plants a great increase in the number of nowers produced may be ob- tained, as the pieces detached soon grow if well treated. In repotting the plants use ctpan crocks, nlling the pots to about cue- third with these. On these place a layer of DIVIDING CYPRIPEDIUMS. A, large division to make a good plant at once, as at C. B, small division for increasing the stock. dried sphagnum, afterwards putting the plant in place and working the compost m among and round the roots. The whole should be made fairly firm, and finished oil at about the level of" the pot rim. For most of the cypripediurns rough peat and a little turfy loam, with the fine soil shaken out, answer well. A few tufts of growing sphagnum may be pressed into the surface of each pot as the potting is finished. Making New Walks.—The present is a good time to make garden walks and re- pair old ones. It always pays to make good walk.3 when the work is in hand. ad badly made walk. are always a nuisance, and con- stantly require mending. In the first place excavate the soil to a 0 depth of quit-' one feet, and to the required width, and then make this up to a thickness of eight inches with rough stones or brickbats to ensure a sound foundation and good drainage. On the top of thia place three inches of coar?'3 gravel, and finish off with some fine gravel. Of course the walk nhould be slightly higher in the centre than at the fddes to throw off I the' water. Roll frequently during wet weather to form a smooth, hard surface. When repairing old walk: first of all fork np the surface lightly before giving a fresh dressing of gravel, and then roll down to obtain a regular surface. < Shallots.—These mny be planted at any time from now, whenever the state of the land allows. Press the cloves nine inches apart in lines one foot asunder. Preparing Land for Onions.—No crop in gardens pays better for a thoroughly pre- pared site than do onions. If the land has not already been got into condition it should be dealt with at once. Trenching should be resorted to if the time can be L found, and if large bulbs are hoped for there must be no stint of manure. < Onions in Boxes.—Many seedlings will now be well above the soil, and should be brought a,s near the glaM as possible. A fe-.v of the best plants may be pricked off singly in pots of rich soil when stron g enough. This plan obviates disturbance of the roots at planting time. Celerv Trenches.—These may be prepared at any* time now if the ground is bare of TRENCHES FOR CELERY. A, trenches for four row.s of celery, wit!i pca.s on ths ridges C,C. 3, trenches for two rows ci celery, with let- tuces on the ridge D, D. crop and the ridges arc ready for intercrop- ping', as shown in the illustration. The Week's Work.—Both early and late nowering varieties of herbaceous phlo'.ea may be divided and replanted at this time, selecting' healthy, outside portions of clumps for replanting. Trench and manure the ground well, and insert the divisions two feet apart. Give pentstemone cutting. hi frames plenty of air. Seed may be sown in a greenhouse where a. bottom heat of 60 to 65 degrees can be afforded. Sow thinly in v/ell drained pans or pots nlled with loam, leaf-soil and sand, covering the seed very lightly. Antirrhinums riseci from seed sown now, will flower freely in summer. Sow seed of tall, intermediate and dwarf varie- ties. FiU shallow well drained boxes with a light mixture of loam, leaf soil and sand. Press firmly, make level and water. Sow evenly and thinly, just covering the seed with very fine soil. Place in a temperature of 55 to 60 degrees. Plant fruit trees and bushes only when the weather is dry and open in previously well prepared soil. Make the holes wide and shallow, spreading out the roots to their full extent and pruning damaged parts. Cover carefully with fine soil and preös nrmly. Should any fruiting growths cf last season still remain on the peaches and nectarines on the wall, prune them out, and in their place train in the succession growths, four to six inches apart. See that each shoot has a terminal wood bud, or if not, prune back to one. Plant well rooted small suckers of the raspberries in deeply dug and freely manured ground. Plant the suckers one foot apart in rowa five feet apart, and train to two rows of strained wire between upright posts at each end. Thin out the old branches of the ilg on walls and train in a supply of new growths which leave uushortened, and secure nrmly to the wall. Early peas should be sown on a sheltered border in rows three feet apart. Cover the seeds two inches. The ground for suecessional rows in more open positions should be deeply dug and liberally manured. Early longpcd is a good variety of broad bean to sow early. Draw drills nine inches wide and two inches deep. Sow a row of seed along each side of the drill, four inches apart. Each double row should be three feet asunder. Prepare 13txei or pa.ns of light scil and sow mustard and cress eeeda of each separately and thickly on the surface. Press them down firmly, but do not cover the seeds, except with paper. A warm hou&e is the seeds should be kept moist. Sow a small quan- tity of leek seed either in a box in the greenhouse or in a frame to produce strong seedlings for an early planting. Treatment of Frozen Plants.—Plants in a cool greenhouse are liable to become frozen owing to a very sharp frost, failure of the heating apparatus, or similar cause. In such a case cover the glass with mats, and if the frost docs not increase syringe the contents of the house with very cold water. To warm the house at oiice would do much hajm. The proper way is to bring about a gradual thaw, and to keep the sun oS the plants. After a few days the house may be warmed gradually. When there is any risk of the plants being fl'nl'n, keep them in a fairly dry condition at the roots. Plants standing in windows should be moved into the middle of the room o-n cold nights.
A boy li-s been arrested in connection with the shooting* of G.riterno, an Italian in Edmonton. who was wonnd.-c.d in tbb forehead by a shot from an airgun, the 'mipcilf, it is eaid, being a sweet bought in his shop.
OUR CHILDREN'S CORNER. I BY I UMCLK RALPM. MY DEAR CHILDREN,— How the weeks do ny! yet not without my thinking of you many, many times. While I wa<s at breakfast this morning, just before setting out for town, I cou:d not help thinking of those members who live in the country, and. wondering how many were probably looking upon a. similar scene to the on, which I enjoy 'witnessing from my window nearly every morning. Such a crowd of birds, some large, som? small, gather round for the crumbs that are thrown to them. Mr. and Mrs. Thrush regularly pay me a visit, and when he is very hungry the Starling, too, but you know what a timid little creature he is. Then there is the Water-Wagtail, who .sterns to be here, there, and everywhere. the Blackbird, Sparrows innumerable, and last, but not least. Mr. Robin, with hi3 brand-new, bright-red v/aistcoat. What a cheeky little fellow he is, too, hardly seem- ing to be alarmed at anything, and wbeii startled by some unusual sound his fellows have all flown away, he alone remains on the lawn, locking as perky and as uncon- cerned as ever. 0 But then you see he I-,a.,i come for a special purpose, and will not b-e- i:i the least satisfied until it is accomplished. He is just the most persevering little bird, with, I think, the most engaging habits. As weather gets more severe the bircli-i get; tamer, and occasionally I have visit-. from some who are more at home in th" ''woodlands and open; fields. The Chaffinch comes quite frequently, and the greatest treat of all, the charming' little Tits. with their blue caps. These little members of the bird world are not very fond of bread- crumbs, but if you hang up a bone with some remaining scraps of meat, from a tree in your garden, you will be delighted to watch the little fellows swinging on it, most of the time upside down, and peeking away for all they are worth. Now I am quite sure all my nieces and nephews re¡¡li.e it is th& little scenes l!kp this. enacted by thc<?e who apparently have w little, that should teach us much. and bring the thing which we most need, clement of gladness, into our lives. The birds, you see, make the mü",t of their opportunities, and are happy under even the most trying circumstances. Below I am giving you another Word Square Competition, the closing date foi which will be February 13, and I shall look forward to receiving your solutions, which you may address to me at 8, La Belle Sauvage, London, E.C., as soon aa they are ready. Next week I shall be announcing the names of the winners in our Word Square Competition No. 1, so keep your eye on the Corner." Trood-bye until then. With love to all. Ever your an'pctionat(\ UNGLB RALPH. I ANSWERS TO LETTERS. EDWARD BpowN: Thanks very much. I am getting on quite nicely. Am gind to know yon enjoyed the Mason's Wine Essence so well, and pleased with the Money-box. You must try again. ALFiE WiLLiAMS: Glad to welcome you as a member. Your number is 2768. PETER POLAND: Shall bs glad to welcome you as a member and to receive your form. ANNA POLAND: Your number is 2761-see last week's "Corner." MARGARET FARLAM Glad to welcome you as a member, and will see that a certificate is sent you. Your number is 2769. MAUD RALPH: I am pleased to hear from you again. I like to receive your letters. ALFRED PETTETT: I am glad to hear you ,v"re ])ieas.ed with your prize, and liked the Mason's Wine so much. You must try again. STANLEY BoNFiELD: Yes, I am always pleased to have your bright and interesting letters. Write to me again. AcGin C'HALLicE: So sorry to hear of your loss. I hoped for better newa. I WORD SQUARE COMPETITION. I No. 3. 1. Net shut, I 2. A great man who lives in Rome. 3. A rnak('l' of cccoa. 4. A bird's home. I HOW BINKIE SPOILT THE PIE AND PUDDING. Mrs.Creyrat was giving a dinner party, and as a great treat she let her son Binkie Greyrat help her make some of the good things for the dinner. Young Binkie felt very important; ns. with one of his mother's old aprons tied round him, he stood on a chair and stirred the pudding. Mrs. Greyrat rolled the pastry and kept an eve en Binkie at the same time, to see that ? hc was behaving properly, and that he did not stick hi.s finger into the basin too often to see what the mixture tasted like. Now it was very hard work stirring the pudding, for of course the more it was stirred the stiffcr it became. Binkie in try- ing very hard to pull the spoon round, Mai- denly lest his balance, tripped over his long apron, and came down crash, with his heact right through the pudding basin Poor Binkie He was just covered with pudding from top to toe' Mrs. Greyrat had to scrape it all o<i him with a knife, and then he had to have a hot bath to take away all the stickincss. Of course, the pudding waa quite spoilt, and Mrs. Greyrat had not time to mako another. She "ju.st had to finish her plum pie, and hoped that it would be big enough to go round. But, cad to say, young Binkie -spoilt that too! After his mother had dressed him for the party, and gone to make herself look beautiful, sire tokl him to go and oit dowr quietly in the kitchen. Binkie went into the kitchen, and without noticing it, sat dov.-u on the chair on which the pie was cooling'' Splish! splash! The pie-crust broke and all the juice poured out, whilst the plums worn squashed quite nat, and the plum atones all stuck into poor little Binkie. What a. mesc; he was in! His motTier had to come and pull him out of the pie dish, give him another hot bath, and send him to tx'd. And all the guests had to have p!am toasted cheese instead of pie and priding. which disappointed them all very much, hc- cause when Mrs. Greyrat invited them, -,he told them that she was making a great big pudding and a huge plum pic for the party. Biukie was not ever allowed to put even his nose in at the kitchen door again.
CHILDREN'S CORNER UNION. Founded by UNCLE RALPH. Open to all Boy. and Girl. under 15 years of age. RULES OF MEMBERSHIP. 1. To do a good turn to someone every day. 2. To be bright and sunny from morning ti!t night. 3. To be kind and considerate to others. 4. To be truthful, honest and diligent. 5. To be unaettish in thought and action. 6. To be kind to all anunats.
A mine-sweeper has brought into Yar- mouth a ship's lifeboat which had been picked, up empty at sea. It bore the name Suldal, which ia that cf a Norwegian steamer that has frequently visited Yar- mouth. The trawler also brought in a quan- tity of deals picked up at sea. It is reported that the evening before the Kaiser's birthday the German soldiers over the frontier were telling- each other how t heir comrades were goin g to cross the Yser that evening, and in Poland were capturing Warsaw as. a birthday gift, to the 1-:ais.-r. UufoTtaua.tct.y both the gifta miscarried.