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There is not one of the circumstances of this capture of streams the company, the water-rate, and the rest that is not a sign of the ill-luck of modern devices in regard to style.

Duckby's satirical story of a tame otter that had a tank in the garden to swim in, and whined restlessly whenever the water-rate was overdue, was scarcely an unfair parody of some of Blenkinthrope's wilder efforts. And then one day came Nemesis.

Insolvent tenants openly defied the collector of the water-rate from their ten-roomed strongholds, and existed for weeks without any visible means of procuring that necessary fluid. Robert Audley looked about him with a shudder as he turned from the waterside into this poverty-stricken locality.

And I believe for the world, as you will find, is full not only of just but of generous souls that if the water-supply were set really right, there would be found, in many a city, many a generous man who, over and above his compulsory water-rate, would give his poor fellow-townsmen such a real fountain as those which ennoble the great square at Carcasonne and the great square at Nismes; to be 'a thing of beauty and a joy for ever."

These paid; but many shrewd fellows put off the obsequious collectors, and contrived to live water-rate free. Thus the honest, as usual, paid for the knaves; and the ultimate burden of all these squandered resources fell also as usual on society at large.

Then it would frighten one, all she counted up on her fingers poor-rate, paving-rate, water-rate, lighting, income-tax, and no end of others. I reckon that's what you pay for your high civilisation.

"I was only going to take him away to wash his pretty face, sir, and smooth his hair," answered the woman, in the most insinuating tone in which she had spoken of the water-rate. "You don't see him to any advantage, sir, while his precious face is dirty. I won't be five minutes making him as neat as a new pin."

They are our rain doctors, and they should procure us the precious fluid. If they cannot, why should we pay them a heavenly water-rate? The rain doctors of savages are kept to their contract. They are expected to bring rain when it is required, and if they do not, the consequences are unpleasant. They are sometimes disgraced, and occasionally killed.

He'd bought land, said Mark, shaking his head, 'and paid for it too. Every sort of nateral advantage was connected with it, the agents said; and there certainly was ONE, quite unlimited. No end to the water! 'It's a thing he couldn't have done without, I suppose, observed Martin, peevishly. 'Certainly not, sir. There it was, any way; always turned on, and no water-rate.

Mrs Kenwigs, too, was quite a lady in her manners, and of a very genteel family, having an uncle who collected a water-rate; besides which distinction, the two eldest of her little girls went twice a week to a dancing school in the neighbourhood, and had flaxen hair, tied with blue ribbons, hanging in luxuriant pigtails down their backs; and wore little white trousers with frills round the ankles for all of which reasons, and many more equally valid but too numerous to mention, Mrs Kenwigs was considered a very desirable person to know, and was the constant theme of all the gossips in the street, and even three or four doors round the corner at both ends.