Author: Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell
Dates: 29 September 1810 – 12 November 1865
Title of Book: The Moorland Cottage
In three weeks, the day came for Edward’s departure. A great cake and a parcel of gingerbread soothed his sorrows on leaving home.
“Don’t cry, Maggie!” said he to her on the last morning; “you see I don’t. Christmas will soon be here, and I dare say I shall find time to write to you now and then. Did Nancy put any citron in the cake?”
Maggie wished she might accompany her mother to Combehurst to see Edward off by the coach; but it was not to be. She went with them, without her bonnet, as far as her mother would allow her; and then she sat down, and watched their progress for a long, long way. She was startled by the sound of a horse’s feet, softly trampling through the long heather. It was Frank Buxton’s.
“My father thought Mrs. Browne would like to see the Woodchester Herald. Is Edward gone?” said he, noticing her sad face.
“Yes! he is just gone down the hill to the coach. I dare say you can see him crossing the bridge, soon. I did so want to have gone with him,” answered she, looking wistfully toward the town.
Frank felt sorry for her, left alone to gaze after her brother, whom, strange as it was, she evidently regretted. After a minute’s silence, he said:
“You liked riding the other day. Would you like a ride now? Rhoda is very gentle, if you can sit on my saddle. Look! I’ll shorten the stirrup. There now; there’s a brave little girl! I’ll lead her very carefully. Why, Erminia durst not ride without a side-saddle! I’ll tell you what; I’ll bring the newspaper every Wednesday till I go to school, and you shall have a ride. Only I wish we had a side-saddle for Rhoda. Or, if Erminia will let me, I’ll bring Abdel-Kadr, the little Shetland you rode the other day.”
Brief Biography: Gaskell was a novelist and short story writer. Her writing depicted the many strata of society during Victorian times. Gaskell was the first person to write a biography of Charlotte Bronte.