intended as such, had a delicious whimsy in them. Occasionally
"Mademoiselle Klosking, the great contralto, whose success has been already recorded in all the journals, strolled, on one of her off nights, into the Kursaal at Homburg, and sat down to _trente et quarante._ Her melodious voice was soon heard betting heavily, with the most engaging sweetness of manner; and doubling seven times upon the red, she broke the bank, and retired with a charming courtesy and eight thousand pounds in gold and notes."
Another dealt with the matter thus:
"The latest coup at Homburg has been made by a cantatrice whose praises all Germany are now ringing. Mademoiselle Klosking, successor and rival of Alboni, went to the Kursaal, _pour passer le temps;_ and she passed it so well that in half an hour the bank was broken, and there was a pile of notes and gold before La Klosking amounting to ten thousand pounds and more. The lady waved these over to her agent, Mr. Joseph Ashmead, with a hand which, _par parenthe'se,_ is believed to be the whitest in Europe, and retired gracefully."
On perusing this, La Klosking held _two_ white hands up to heaven in amazement at the skill and good taste which had dragged this feature into the incident.
"A circumstance has lately occurred here which will infallibly be seized on by the novelists in search of an incident. Mademoiselle Klosking, the new contralto, whose triumphant progress through Europe will probably be the next event in music, walked into the Kursaal the other night, broke the bank, and walked out again with twelve thousand pounds, and that charming composure which is said to distinguish her in private life.
"What makes it more remarkable is that the lady is not a gamester, has never played before, and is said to have declared that she shall never play again. It is certain that, with such a face, figure, and voice as hers, she need never seek for wealth at the gambling-table. Mademoiselle Klosking is now in negotiation with all the principal cities of the Continent. But the English managers, we apprehend, will prove awkward competitors."
Were I to reproduce the nine other paragraphs, it would be a very curious, instructive, and tedious specimen of literature; and, who knows? I might corrupt some immaculate soul, inspire some actor or actress, singer or songstress, with an itch for public self-laudation, a foible from which they are all at present so free. Witness the _Era,_ the _Hornet,_ and _Figaro._
Ina Klosking spotted what she conceived to be a defect in these histories. "My friend," said she meekly, "the sum I won was under five thousand pounds."