Simon Dale

Anthony Hope
Simon Dale, by Anthony Hope

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Title: Simon Dale
Author: Anthony Hope

Release Date: January 10, 2007 [eBook #20328]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1
E-text prepared by Elaine Walker, Karen Dalrymple, and the Project
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T. Nelson & Sons London and Edinburgh Paris: 189, rue Saint-Jacques
Leipzig: 35-37 Königstrasse
[Illustration: "It is only that a low laugh echoes distantly in my ear."]

I. The Child of Prophecy 3
II. The Way of Youth 18
III. The Music of the World 33
IV. Cydaria revealed 49
V. I am forbidden to forget 65
VI. An Invitation to Court 84
VII. What came of Honesty 103
VIII. Madness, Magic, and Moonshine 122
IX. Of Gems and Pebbles 140

X. Je Viens, Tu Viens, Il Vient 160
XI. The Gentleman from Calais 180
XII. The Deference of His Grace the Duke 201
XIII. The Meed of Curiosity 222
XIV. The King's Cup 244
XV. M. de Perrencourt whispers 263
XVI. M. de Perrencourt wonders 283
XVII. What befell my Last Guinea 303
XVIII. Some Mighty Silly Business 324
XIX. A Night on the Road 345
XX. The Vicar's Proposition 362
XXI. The Strange Conjuncture of Two Gentlemen 378
XXII. The Device of Lord Carford 396
XXIII. A Pleasant Penitence 414
XXIV. A Comedy before the King 434
XXV. The Mind of M. de Fontelles 451
XXVI. I come Home 468


One who was in his day a person of great place and consideration, and
has left a name which future generations shall surely repeat so long as
the world may last, found no better rule for a man's life than that he
should incline his mind to move in Charity, rest in Providence, and turn
upon the poles of Truth. This condition, says he, is Heaven upon Earth;
and although what touches truth may better befit the philosopher who
uttered it than the vulgar and unlearned, for whom perhaps it is a
counsel too high and therefore dangerous, what comes before should
surely be graven by each of us on the walls of our hearts. For any man
who lived in the days that I have seen must have found much need of
trust in Providence, and by no whit the less of charity for men. In such
trust and charity I have striven to write: in the like I pray you to read.
I, Simon Dale, was born on the seventh day of the seventh month in the
year of Our Lord sixteen-hundred-and-forty-seven. The date was good
in that the Divine Number was thrice found in it, but evil in that it fell
on a time of sore trouble both for the nation and for our own house;
when men had begun to go about saying that if the King would not
keep his promises it was likely that he would keep his head as little;
when they who had fought for freedom were suspecting that victory
had brought new tyrants; when the Vicar was put out of his cure; and
my father, having trusted the King first, the Parliament afterwards, and
at last neither the one nor the other, had lost the greater part of his
substance, and fallen from wealth to straitened means: such is the
common reward of an honest patriotism wedded to an open mind.
However, the date, good or bad, was none of my doing, nor indeed,
folks whispered, much of my parents' either, seeing that destiny
overruled the affair, and Betty Nasroth, the wise woman, announced its
imminence more than a year beforehand. For she predicted the birth, on
the very day whereon I came into the world, within a mile of the parish
church, of a male child who--and the utterance certainly had a lofty
sound about it--should love where the King loved, know what the King
hid, and drink of the King's cup. Now, inasmuch as none lived within
the limits named by Betty Nasroth, save on the one side sundry humble
labourers, whose progeny could expect no such fate, and on the other

my Lord and Lady Quinton, who were wedded but a month before my
birthday, the prophecy was fully as pointed as it
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