"I beg your pardon," rejoined the theatrical gentleman; "but till I can forget the blunderbuss fired from the upsetting coach, the cobweb over the poor's-box, and the gay parson and undertaker at the harlot's funeral, I cannot allow of the comparison. Besides, I admire Hogarth for another reason: did he consider an engraver's to be an infradig. profession?
I saw but one glance of it; the next moment the heavy veil had fallen. 'Get the silver yourself, and keep it all, cried the two men, as I opened for them without a word: and from that day to this, no one has ever heard the story from me. I put the half-crown in the poor's-box next Sabbath. But, Master Willie, after that night I never cared for keeping the toll-bar.
"No, sir," said she, "I canna take help from the poor's-box, although it's very true that I am in great need; for it might hereafter be cast up to my bairns, whom it may please God to restore to better circumstances when I am no to see't; but I would fain borrow five pounds, and if, sir, you will write to Mr Maitland, that is now the Lord Provost of Glasgow, and tell him that Marion Shaw would be obliged to him for the lend of that soom, I think he will not fail to send it."
A genty body, she never changed her widow's weeds, and span frae morning tae nicht to keep her bairns and herself. When her daughter Effie was ill, I called on her in a sympathising way, and offered her some assistance frae the Session, but she refused help out of the poor's-box, as it might be hereafter cast up to her bairns.