A single "Answers to Correspondents" column has been transcribed from Volume 5 (1883-4) of the Girl's Own Paper. The column appeared on pages 159 and 735 of that volume. The second part, from page 735, is reproduced below. The first part, from page 159, is reproduced here.
NANCIE. – You would receive full information and advice on the subject of going to New Zealand from the secretary of the Women's Emigration Society.
MARTHA. – The system of "protected emigration" to Canada for single women is fully in working order. Full particulars may be obtained from Miss Blake, 187, Fulham-road, S.W. £3 12s. 6d. defrays the charge of each emigrant's railway fare from London to Liverpool, of bed and board there, and of the passage from there to Quebec, and also of the matron's fee and kit.
AN ANXIOUS ONE. – You might find a situation in Buenos Ayres by advertising for some lady who was going out there and would take you as nurse. You might make enquiries at the Women's Emigration Society also.
FAIRLEA. – We fear, from what we see in the newspapers, that emigrants to New South Wales are not at present likely to do well. The labour market is glutted, rents high, and living dear. In the bush, however, things are better.
H.M. – A knitting competition was held more than two years ago for our readers.
DEVONSHIRE LASS. – As we have before remarked, white straw hats cannot be cleaned nor re-blocked without proper utensils. We can tell you that they are bleached with sulphur fumes, and only advise you to find out a hat cleaner and blocker, and to employ her. Black straw hats, if not in very bad order, can be improved by brushing them all over with a thin solution of gum arabic.
DIDO. – The last idea is, that Penelope's web was knitted, but knitting, netting, and crochet work are of unknown antiquity.
HUBERT. – See the article on "Girl's Allowances." You could cut the jacket shorter and trim it with feather trimming at the edge.
DARLING MARY. – It is better not to contribute to the competitions if you cannot honestly afford to buy the materials for the work. You are not compelled to send work to any competition.
BUDGIE. – 1. Certainly there are pencils, the writing made with which does not rub out. 2. In vol.1, page 479, you will find advice about hair turning grey (part for July, 1880). We are so sorry for you. It does indeed need patience to endure being bed-ridden.
DIDDY HANCOT. – Your very kind letter deserves our best thanks. Place the batter pudding basin into cold water (to cool it), beat the whites and yolks of the eggs separately in making the pudding, and pour the mixture into the basin. The latter is not to be greased nor wetted inside.
JELLY. – We do not give French recipes. You can procure the mustard from a chemist or Italian warehouse, if not at your own grocer's.
SYBIL BROWNE. – It is the bride's father or family that provides the wedding cake, as well as the rest of the breakfast. Of course it would be unnecessary to decline a present of the cake if the bridegroom's family asked leave to present it.
G.H.R. – We never heard of a preserve made of mountain-ash berries. They are greedily eaten by birds, and used as a lure by bird-catchers. The leaves of the roan tree (the British species) dried have been used in times of famine as a substitute for wheat. Thus, we infer that, if not agreeable when made into a preserve, the tree cannot produce a "poisonous" fruit.
M.A.B. – We are much obliged to you for your recipes for dressing rhubarb.
RHODA M. – There are three "Musical Practising Societies," if not more, so you may make your choice between them. For information concerning one of them, write to Miss M. L. Phillips, Hon. Sec., 6, Ashbrook-terrace, Sunderland, or else apply to Miss Jennings, Hon. Sec., Dan-y-Bryn House, Newport, Monmouthshire. The third is that of which Miss McLandsborough is the secretary, Lindum-terrace, Manningham, Bradford, Yorkshire.
A. M. – 1. Should any music publisher undertake to bring out your song, it is not likely that he will pay anything for a first work. Nevertheless, you might obtain a certain sum on every subsequent edition. Offer it to several firms before you settle definitively with any. 2. It is by no means "absurd" that the wonderful after-glows, which we witnessed last autumn and early this year, should have been occasioned by the volcanic disturbance in Java. Perhaps you are not aware that a number of "air waves" were registered at the Berlin Observatory. The first arrived ten hours after the great eruption of Krakatoa, the second about sixteen hours later, coming on the other side of the world. In thirty-six hours a third and weaker one arrived (the first wave having gone round the world completely), and thirty-four hours after the second, and still more feeble, wave had also made a similar circuit. Thus, the arrival of the delicate "bubble plates" of pumice stone, formed like minute fragments of a watch-glass, as seen under a strong magnifier, and floating with their convex side downwards, were peculiarly adapted to reflect the rays of the setting sun and protract all their ordinary effects. These particles of volcanic matter fell thickly on the deck of the bark Arabella, when 1,000 miles distant from Krakatoa, and two days after the greatest eruption, which took place in August.
OLD CROTCHETY. – We have recommended the so-called "stammerers" in pianoforte playing to give up practising for some time, and to restore the lack of nervous energy by rest and change of scene. But as you think that to play a certain selection of pieces with a determination to succeed is likewise a method of cure, we give the list, and leave the sufferers to choose between the two plans: "Weber's Moto Continuo," studies to be had in Hallé's fourth section; Bach's fugues; Czerny's Velocité studies, those by Clementé and Kalkbrenner. We thank you for your suggestions.
MOSES. – Certainly you may weave a song of which the copyright belongs to another into any piece of music for instrumental performances for your private use, but you may neither play it in public nor publish it unless you obtain permission from the owners, by gift or purchase.
DAISY. – Your parody does you credit. We sympathise truly with you in reference to your AEolian harp, and do not know what is amiss with it. Take it to a musical instrument seller, and ask him to examine and set it right.
DAISY FLORENCE. – Certainly paintings on china need to be baked to render them durable. You should make all such inquiries as where to send them for baking at the shop where you buy the materials. We do not give such addresses.
FANNY SPRIGGE. – We regret that we cannot give you such addresses, but at seaside towns it is easy to meet with persons who gain a living by making shell boxes, baskets, and picture-frames, and some amongst them will give lessons, we believe.
LISBET (New Zealand). – It is gratifying to hear of the "great resource" to you, as an invalid, which our paper has been. We have given an article on May, 1880, and July, 1880, page 459. In the number for October, 1880, page 69, you will find one on the "Girl's House." A narrow shelf with a railing placed over each door affords a good place for decorative plates and vases, also others round the walls, at the top of the wainscoat or dado.
DAISY CHAIN (Constantinople). – The verb "to purple" is derived from the Latin purpurare, and signifies "to die of a deep red colour," as "hands purpled with blood." We make this extract from Webster's large dictionary, and this description is further supported by Milton, who says, "When morn purples the West;" or gives the blue a deep tinge of red. Purple consists of a dark blue tinted with red, but some English people have a habit of misnaming a very dark shade of blue purple, and it is necessary to inquire of them what colour they mean to denote.
ELLA WRIGHT. – 1. The age and original use of the round towers in Ireland was long a vexed question but there seems little doubt that they were built some by the Druids or Magi, and others by Christianised Druids, their original use having been to preserve the sacred fires of their religion. This gave them the name of "fire towers." 2. We think that we have already told some correspondent that the name "Cromleac" is a compound of two names in the Irish language, "Crom" signifying "God," and "leac" a "stone." Thus, the term is an appropriate one for the huge stones erected for purposes of divine worship.
S.L. – We regret that we must again repeat the fact that we do not give such addresses. The artistic firms that undertake to paint church windows might direct you, if not supply you with the pigments or other appliances requisite for the work. Refer to a London directory, or to advertisements in some church paper.
ANNA DE WARRENDRE, AND OTHERS, are much discouraged and down-hearted over the article called "Ill-assorted Couples," in THE GIRL'S OWN PAPER. The great object, of course, in marriage is to find a good and sensible mate, with who you may grow steadily "upwards towards the light," so do not choose hastily, nor carelessly, but wait for "the best" to come. Together you must either stand or fall, and few girls stop to think of the mutual influence exercised for good or evil; and the mutual forbearance needful.
THE FIVE SISTERS. – Anyone may wear a ring if they have one, but it would look ridiculous, and out of place, on the hand of a working woman. You must consult a doctor about the "nervous people."
OLIVER CROMWELL. – The poem, "Curfew shall not ring to-night," is by an American writer, Rose Hardwick Thorpe.
CATHERINE R.P. (New Zealand) says that white lace may be died cream colour with saffron. Take half-a-dozen threads of saffron, and put them into a cup of boiling water; let them stand till cold, and then take out the saffron. The lace being clean and dry, dip it in the liquid, because, if allowed to remain, it becomes streaky. The colour of the saffron-water may be first tested with a bit of old white calico. We are much indebted to our kind correspondent for her letter.
SILVERY WAVES. – We think that the tale of the reversed horseshoes is told of Margaret of Anjou, and her perilous escapes.
AREQUIPA. – Bake the chocolates in a slow oven.You should order the volumes to be bound in "publisher's cases," which are those issued by us, decorated with a design of a young girl reading on the cover, in silver or gold.
VIOLET P.R. – We thank our little friend for her letter, which we agree with her in thinking "not very bad for a young lady, when she is only eight years old." We think it promises well for the future. If your guinea-pig has a tail we should advise you to sell it to the owners of the Zoological Gardens, as a great curiosity, for if you look for a picture of one in any animal picture book, you will find that it has none. So its eyes will be very safe, if only in danger of tail-pulling.
MILDRED DIXON. – The wearing of a back-board and a face-board together for a certain time every day while learning your lessons might improve you and make you more upright. Your writing is good for your age.
CLUCAS. – None of the readers of THE GIRL'S OWN PAPER give answers to questions of correspondents. See, by reference to our indexes, all that has been said on the care of hands and nails. "Medicus" gave an article called "Lissom Hands and Pretty Feet," page 348, vol. i.
JACK THE GIANT KILLER. – It is only a joke. Men propose to women, and to reverse the rule at any period of any year would be a very indelicate act.
THE SAD SEA WAVES can only drive the cat away and use the watering-pot, or, still better, a garden hose, when she frightens your birds and rabbits and trespasses in your garden or conservatory. 2. We do not see why your wooden brackets should not take a coat of paint.
YORKSHIRE LASSIE. – We thank you for your kind solicitude, and are happy to say that the fire did not reach our house. We should not like a daughter of ours to exchange photographs with a man she had seen only twice!
ELIZABETH F.W. – The several meanings of "caprices" are, an abrupt change in feeling, opinion, or action, proceeding from a whim or fancy. We quite agree with you in thinking that the girls who prove themselves so ungrateful and ill-bred as to write an insulting letter should excite our pity rather than our displeasure. We thank you for your kind letter.
UNHAPPY FANNIE has great cause to be very thankful that God's Holy Spirit is striving in her heart, and enabled her to desire to please Him and to follow His guidance. Many texts of Holy Scripture need to be considered in connection, with others, by which method their true meaning is discovered. You cannot be saved without faith in the Godhead and sacrifice of your Saviour, and a dead faith – that is to say, a mere historical faith in Him, apart from a loving desire and effort to please Him and serve Him as your Lord and Master – is worth nothing, for "the devils believe and tremble." So faith and works cannot be disunited. If you attempted to do so you would be a hypocrite. "If you love Me, keep My commandments." Be earnest in daily prayer for aid in subduing the evil that is in you.
NANNAH. – Girls should always have a chaperone when going into society or to public entertainments. If very intimate with the hostess, she will often propose to take a girl under her special protection, and invite her to go to her house early before everyone else arrives.
LOUISE. – If you were, unfortunately, unable to hear what a person had said to you, of course you should not "add insult to injury" by ordering them to "beg pardon!" This would be using the "imperative mood," which denotes command. You might say, "Kindly excuse me for asking you to repeat what you said," and take good care not to be so careless a listener again. It is ill-bred to oblige people to repeat their remarks.
A HIGHLANDER. – We think you should take a legal opinion on the question. Is the rector or incumbent who entered your name in the church register at your baptism still living? If so, you might consult with him as to what could be done in a case of a mistake in the entry made.
N. O. A. – When a mistress rings her sitting-room bell for a servant she should not knock at the door when answering a summons, nor should she do so in entering any sitting-room, such as a drawing or dining room, in the pursuance of their duties. Of course, they should knock at a bedroom door, or at that of a private boudoir.
CROSSIE. – You should avoid taking walks with any "boy" who "regards you in a different light than as a friend." Plait your hair in a number of small tight plaits at night, after having damped it.
MILLIE BANE. – We do not like to hear of young girls "disagreeing with a very near relation," and only "being on speaking terms." If a parent, you should humble yourself for your presumption in daring to be on any terms but those of a loving and dutiful obedience. How could you expect to enjoy the "peace of God" under such circumstances? If the relative be a brother or sister, take the initiative and go and make friends again, and ask to be received in the same terms of affectionate fellowship as before. This is one of the ways of serving your heavenly Master above.
AN ANXIOUS ONE. – You have a legal right to all your own money and earnings, and, so far as you feel right, you should continue to bestow a small portion of your means on charity, and make a present sometimes to a friend. But having brought home a husband, of course you undertook more expenses than you had previously, and cannot expect to have as much to give in mere presents, if any. Your husband has the first claim on you.
HEATHER BELL. – The word "esplanade" should be pronounced "es-pla-naide." The character can be discovered by means of the handwriting. You should not leave spaces in the middle of your words, but run all the letters of each word together. We are glad our magazine gives you pleasure in your far off Hebrides.
A.L.G. – As you do not find your own plan succeed, try the application of pipeclay mixed with water, till of the consistency of cream, and lay this on the oil stains made on the wall paper, and leave it there until the following day, when the paste will be dry and may be rubbed off with a soft cloth.
HESPER. – You may either cut an orange straight through (not from stem to top) and divide and cut out the pulp, using a fork, or you may peel it and divide the several cloves. If sugar be desired, you should use a fork, or your fingers will be soiled. You are very young as yet to have any manners; as to ease or stiffness, schoolgirls are often deficient in that easy grace of carriage, movements, and expression which is acquired when highly-bred examples are before them for their study. On being introduced into society they are apt to copy each other, as they have no other model for imitation. Unbend at least in your expression, if otherwise stiff and awkward, and this will be a step in the right direction. You would improve your handwriting by avoiding the use of capital "e"s where there should be small ones. Your writing is stiff, but legible.
A MOTHER. – There is a home for incurable children at Cheltenham. For all regulations respecting it apply to the lady principal or secretary, Belmont House, Winchcomb-street, Cheltenham. As this would be more within your easy access than any other with which we are acquainted, we advise you to apply here first.
A STUDENT of "MEDICUS." – We are glad that you have found all our recipes, already tried, so successful, with but one exception, and as so obviously accidental an omission was made of an article which was indispensable, we scarcely needed to have already, and more than once, drawn attention to it ourselves. 2. Those who have not got all our volumes may borrow those of their friends, or write to the publisher for the monthly number which they require for reference.
YOUNG BOTANIST. – That impressions of ferns may be found in coal strata is no matter of surprise, because both these and the large tree ferns helped to form peat, and thus, in process of ages, composed coal. Of curiously marked stems and trunks of gigantic trees, you may also find small fragments, notably of the Lepidodendron, Sigillaria, and Calamite. Geologists say that, when flowering plants appeared in the primeval forests, they crowded out the giant possessors of the soil, and the latter dwindled into insignificance. Of these splendid trees you still find the degenerate remains; in the horsetail, a small reed-like plant, fringed round each joint of the stem (the Equisetum) you see the descendant of the Calamites, and in the little club moss (the Lypocodium) you see the gigantic Lepidodendron of pre-historic times. The horsetail is very common; the club moss you will find on the moors of the North of England.
ETHEL STANTON. – Your brother will probably write and give you exact instructions as to how to go to him and the cheapest way it can be managed. You will probably have to go from London direct by the P. and O. steamers, without change.
A "GORE-HIM-DOWN" asks no less than eight questions, most of which are so vaguely put we do not know how to answer them. She had better mark and hem some handkerchiefs for her father's birthday present, and consult her mother on the question of what she would wish her to play, when told to do so as a "home entertainment of older people."