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In 1824, the four elder girls were admitted as pupils to Cowan Bridge School for the daughters of clergymen, where they were half starved amid the most insanitary surroundings. Helen Burns in "Jane Eyre" is as exact a transcript of Maria Brontë as Charlotte's wonderful power of representing character could give.

Scarcely had they done so, however, when Captain Eyre, who commanded the artillery, opened upon them with grape from his three guns, while from waggon, and boat, and fallen log, the musketry fire flashed out hot and bitter, and, reeling under the shower of iron and lead, the French line broke up, the soldiers took shelter behind trees, and thence returned the fire of the defenders.

Forbes's misgivings as to a twenty-year-old girl crossing the continent alone had been unavailing against Io's calm willfulness. Well, she would go back and marry Del Eyre, and be comfortable ever after. After all, liking and comprehension were a sounder foundation for matrimony than the perishable glamour of an attraction like Holmesley's. Any sensible person would know that.

Eyre would first proceed to Lake Torrens and examine it, and then penetrate as far inland in a northerly direction as would be found practicable. This space was likely to be barren, though of course it would be impossible to say how far it extended.

After various efforts as schoolmistresses and governesses, the sisters took to literature and pub. a vol. of poems under the names of Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell, which, however, fell flat. Charlotte then wrote her first novel, The Professor, which did not appear until after her death, and began Jane Eyre, which, appearing in 1847, took the public by storm.

"I told him to get Eyre," said Nancy, laughingly, "I was afraid he'd repeat the Gallatin Park monstrosity on a larger scale, and Eyre's the only man in this country who understands the French. It's been rather amusing," she went on, "I've had to fight Hilda, and she's no mean antagonist. How she hates me!

"I wouldn't insure his life for five cents," returned the other with conviction. "Your editor is crazy-mad over this Mrs. Eyre. So there you have him delivered, shorn and helpless, and Delilah doesn't even suspect that she's acting as our agent." Marrineal's eyes fixed themselves in a lifeless sort of stare upon a far corner of the ceiling.

And then once more they let her drift, and young Eyre took a nip of whisky and settled himself so as to hear Lavender's story, whatever it might be. "You knew I was married?" "Yes." "Didn't you ever wonder why my wife did not come here?" "Why should I wonder?

I neither expressed surprise at this resolution nor attempted to dissuade her from it. "The vocation will fit you to a hair," I thought: "much good may it do you!" When we parted, she said: "Good-bye, cousin Jane Eyre; I wish you well: you have some sense."

Starting from the overland telegraph line, Lewis skirted Lake Eyre to the north, and penetrated to Eyre's Creek, in Queensland territory, and traced that creek and the Diamantina into Lake Eyre; also confirming the opinion so often advanced that the waters of Cooper's Creek found their way into that receptacle, as well as the more westerly streams.