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The Prior's Tithe (Alcock)

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Inheritance Publications

David Stratton stood long at the lancet window - how long he never knew. Strange new thoughts filled his mind, and for the first time for weeks even the Prior of St. Andrews and the Vicar of Ecclescreig were forgotten. For he did not, as might be imagined, amuse and gratify himself by applying the fiery denunciations he had just heard to these his personal enemies. They had indeed impressed and delighted him at the time; but what he afterwards heard almost swept them from his memory. Unaccustomed to abstract thought, though full of practical shrewdness, a mere exposition of doctrine would perhaps hardly have left a clearer impression on him, when delivered in his native tongue, than if it had been couched in Latin; but his mind was quick to grasp and strong to retain them passively: he was accustomed to reflect, after a fashion, upon his own doings and those of other men; and to his imagination, the blind man of the gospel was as real, and not more distant, than if he had lived, or was living then in Edinburgh or St. Andrews.