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The earliest rumour which I have been able to recall in England concerning existing occult practices to which a questionable purpose might be attributed, appeared in a well-known psychological journal some few years since, and was derived from a continental source, being an account of a certain society then existing in Paris, which was devoted to magical practices and in possession of a secret ritual for the evocation of planetary angels; it was an association of well-placed persons, denying any connection with spiritualism, and pretending to an acquaintance with more effectual thaumaturgic processes than those which obtain at séances. The account passed unchallenged, for in the absence of more explicit information, it seemed scarcely worth while to draw attention to the true character of the claim. The secret ritual in question could not have been unknown to specialists in magical literature, and was certainly to myself among these; as a fact, it was one of those numerous clavicles of the goëtic art which used to circulate surreptitiously in manuscript some two centuries ago. There is no doubt that the planetary spirits with which the document was concerned were devils in the intention of its author, and must have been evoked as such, supposing that the process was practised. The French association was not therefore in possession of a secret source of knowledge, but as impositions of this kind are to be

Ledscha had expected her lover's return with eager longing, but week after week elapsed, yet nothing was seen or heard of the ships owned by the Owl's Nest family; then a rumour spread that this time the corsairs were defeated in a battle with the Syrian war-galleys. The first person who received sure tidings was old Tabus.

There had been for some months much talk in town of the rapid downfall of the whilom favourite of Fashion, Sir John Oxon. But a few weeks before the coming happiness of the old Earl of Dunstanwolde was made known to the world, there had been a flurry of gossip over a rumour that Sir John, whose fortunes were in a precarious condition, was about to retrieve them by a rich marriage.

By this time the rumour of the expected trooper was all through the little ship, and there was an air of subdued excitement on every face. 'Where are we now? asked Ken of Williams. 'Somewhere between Marmora Island and Rodosto. Whatever comes out o' the Bosphorus for the Dardanelles is bound to run past us, and then A wink said more than words.

Gifford, the sub-editor, had hailed the resignation of Cairns as promotion to himself; and so it might have proved, but Ebenezer Brown was far too shrewd to oppose Gifford to Cairns. "We must find a new editor," he remarked to the former when the rumour of opposition reached him. Gifford, with a half promise of the editorial chair in his mind, smiled blandly. "You will not forget ," he began.

Pepys heard this news in the first month of the year 1668; and soon afterwards a further rumour reached him that she was veritably the king's mistress, "even to the scorn of the world." This intrigue affected Lady Castlemaine in a manner which the Duke of Buckingham had not expected.

It was impossible, he thought, but that some rumour of the struggle must have reached their ears and set on edge their curiosity; and now, in all the neighbouring houses, he divined them sitting motionless and with uplifted ear solitary people, condemned to spend Christmas dwelling alone on memories of the past, and now startingly recalled from that tender exercise; happy family parties struck into silence round the table, the mother still with raised finger every degree and age and humour, but all, by their own hearths, prying and hearkening and weaving the rope that was to hang him.

His soul was tremendous, in solitude; but even the rumour of society intimidated it. His father and another were walking about the ground floor; the rough voice of his father echoed upwards in all its crudity. He listened for the other voice; it was his Auntie Clara's.

Just as the remains of his army were about to move, a rumour spread that the enemy was approaching in great force. Had this rumour been true, the danger would have been extreme.

Jenkinson, our Mrs. Malaprop, and Jones junior, our "howler" manufacturing schoolboy. He was also a stout apostle of a mode of expression which he called "funny language." Thus, instead of writing boldly: "There is a rumour that ," I was taught to say, "It has got about that ." This sounds funnier in print, so Gresham said. I could never see it myself.

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