100 THE BOOK OF CHRISTMAS.
turned back from its unpleasing course, is Rowing joyously back, by every highway, into the sweet regions of its pure and untainted spring.
But of all wayfarers who are journeying towards the haunts of Christmas, who so happy as the emancipated school-boy !— and of all vehicles that are carrying contributions of mirth to that general festival, what vehicle is so richly stored therewith as the post-chaise that holds a group of these young travellers! The glad day which has been the subject of speculation, so long before (and has been preceded by days which, in their imaginary calendar, are, beyond any question, the very longest days of all the year), has at length arrived—after seeming as if it never would arrive; and the long restrained and hourly increasing tide of expectation has at length burst its barriers, and is rushing for ward, with no little noise, into the sea of fruition. " Eja ! quid silemus V says the well-known breaking-up song of the Winchester boys ; and the sentiment therein expressed is wide awake (as everything must be, on this morning, that lies within any reasonable distance of their voices), in the breast of every school, boy, at all schools.
" Appropinquat ecce ! felix Hora gaudiorum, Post grave tedium, Advenit omnium Meta petita laborum.
Domum, domum, dulce domum! Domum, domum, dulce domum ! Dulce, dulce, dulce domum! Dulce domum resonemus.
" Musa! libros mitte, fessa; Mitte pensa dura, Mitte negotium, Jam datur otium, Mea mittito cura!
Domum, domum, &c.
* * *
" Heus, Rogere, fer caballos; Eja nunc eamus, Limen amabile.