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We had been exiled from 'hall' to dine here-
from the hall, with its high open roof of oak, with
its wainscot of oak, all round which were the
armorial bearings of founders and benefactors,
with its portraits of the founder and of the
mightiest of the alumni, with its ancient hearth,
the dogs of brass, and the mighty embers. We
had been exiled from the long oaken tables, from
underneath which looked out of the carved oak,
heads of medieval spirits. We had been driven
from the lectern at which the junior scholars
pronounce the Latin grace-the lectern was a
grace in itself.
We were in exile, eating our
dinner in a lecture-room, at the tutor's writing-
table. The lecture-room was felt to be a griev-
ance. In the background was a dreary array
of students' examination desks and cane-bottomed
chairs, all covered with dust. Through the
windows we had an outlook across a little grass
plot at blank walls where the kitchens are. But
they still sent us the ale in silver pint-pots. We
were spared the indignity of drinking college ale
from tumblers. Mighty is the ale of St Martin's
College in Oxford. Reader, thou hast not quaffed
a mightier liquor of malt. It can be drunk from
silver pots alone.

them unfinished, left the problems unsolved, hopes unrealised-though one felt little of it then. In the early morning, the sun came in through the window with its footworn sill of stone. The student lay thereby asleep-in dreams. The sun looked on the unfinished works of the man! Gentlest of critics! Where in all the world shall be found another so gentle, and yet so truthfully severe withal?

The last week of the vacation came at length. Then entered the men-mechanical bearing the signs of their profession-carpet-beaters, chimneysweeps, glaziers, cabinet-makers. The scouts were about in college all day long. Our solitude was invaded. No council of war was held by the four inhabitants, but each one independently evacuated the place. I turned out after breakfast, and wandered to Iffley, or to Shotover, or into 'New' or 'John's' gardens-there to read a novel.

I always came back by the High. There too was a beginning of activity. One saw again unmistakable cabs with the first arrivals-harbingers of the coming term. They were men of other colleges, and unknown to me, yet to whom I was bound by a something that gave me involuntary pleasure. There came the anticipation of meeting one's friends, of experiencing again the pleasure of society, and the pleasure of the activity of the golden summer term.

We went to sleep on Friday night. We had read the last page of that chapter of our lives, and turned over the leaf. The Vacation was ended.


We dined leisurely. Kaimes was not a man of much conversation; but Cole always had plenty to say. Graves seldom dined with us. He was seldom seen by any one. So the evening darkened in the low-ceiled lecture-room. How much more touching had it been in the gloom and grandeur of the Gothic hall. But it was the same gloom of evening; it made us quiet, perhaps sad. We rose together, and each one went off to his own rooms. They were shadowy enough-lighted only by the red firelight. The scout set the kettle on the fire, set the tea-things on the table, and withdrew for the night. I made tea, and sipped it in the firelight. There was no sound, no voice, only the college clock telling CHAPTER XLVII.- 'MISTER,' SAID HIRAM GRAVELY, the quarter-hours. Once or twice the bells of Magdalen rang peals, faintly heard down in our dark solitude. Once or twice the merry Christ Church bells' chimed their one, two, three, four. Thus was each evening spent till the time came that I cared to light my lamp and begin to read.

I usually read on till two or three in the morning. Often I did not hear the clocks strike at all. Sometimes, in a pause, I heard the clocks strike twelve. Then, in a pause again, I could hear them strike the hour of two or of three; at






IN an hour's time or thereabouts, Mr Search arrived in a frock-coat, tightly buttoned, a slim tall hat, and very accurately fitting boots and gloves. His solemnity and dignity were tremendous. The solemnity remained until he took his leave-the dignity vanished when he crossed the threshold and had once shaken the hostess's hand, and nothing remained of it but that serious cordialness and beautiful sincerity which mark the good American.

which I went off to bed. There was a ghost in the library, they said. I thought of it. But heart was too sophisticated perhaps to fear or In the course of the evening, Mr Search was to hear its mysterious tread. One did not always somehow beguiled into a narration of certain of light one's lamp to read for the 'schools.' Non his experiences of the world and of men and scholae sed vitae. But it was not for life either. manners. Little Mary sat and worshipped him ; It was sometimes to read in the poets' sweet and the old lady was filled with wonder and pages-to read slowly over again the dear familiar admiration. It appeared that he had been pretty nearly everywhere and seen pretty nearly everything, to the limited experience of his listeners. Mrs Norton confessed him a remarkable man, and was known to say of him afterwards that he spoke English beautifully. It would seem that she regarded it as being a tongue originally foreign to him. Hiram left early, since he had a two miles' walk from the railway station, and reaching the hall, found his employer waiting for him.

Thus I followed with the inward eye the images of things one after another, till the moving time stood still, and I was left

Sole sitting by the shores of old romance. There were moods too, in which one must write something-prose or worse;' letters that were eventually not sent to the post-letters also that were not meant to be sent. And so one left

'Search,' said Gerard, 'I want to speak to you.' Hiram stood quietly before him; but Gerard arose and began to pace the room with unequal steps. By-and-by he paused, and stood straight before Hiram and looked him in the face. I have it on my mind to say something very serious,' he said deliberately. 'It is not easy to do it. Hiram Search-shake hands.' Hiram shook hands, with his gaze fixed on Gerard's. 'You and I know from what you saved me. I can never pay you for it; I shall never want to feel that I have discharged the debt. But will you let me pay you in part?'

They still gripped hands, and looked at each other steadfastly.

"Mister,' said Hiram gravely, you paid me long ago. You enlisted me with this half-sovereign,' touching it with the thumb and finger of his left hand as it hung from his watch-chain. It wa'n't the gift-it was the way of it. I shall take it kindly if you will never speak of that night again.'

Will you let me try in part to thank you?' 'I'd rather it rested at this,' said Hiram. The grip he gave the hand he held at the last word, told Gerard all he meant.

"That can't be,' said Gerard. In the first place, we are not going to part, I hope, but you are out of my service from this hour.'

'No,' said Hiram.

"Yes,' insisted Gerard, with a husky laugh. 'I discharge you. And now, you true friend and honest man, will you do me the very greatest favour I can ask you? Will you go away and get married and be happy, as you deserve to be, and with a hurried shamefacedness which made the gift most moving and manly and gracious-will you take this as a wedding present from a friend?' (This' was a strip of paper addressed to a great banking-house in London.)

Mister,' said Hiram coldly, 'this takes the shine off everything.'

"You can't refuse me,' said Gerard. 'You'll take it to please me. From a friend, Searchfrom a friend. And to a friend-the best I ever had. Good-night.' He shook Hiram hurriedly by the hand again and left him.

Hiram dug the slip of paper sulkily into his waistcoat pocket and stood for a moment immersed in unpleasing emotions. 'I think it's meaner,' he said at last, rousing himself, 'to refuse to take it, than it would have been not to offer it. I wish there was no such thing as money in the hull wide world. Freezes everything, it does.' But he ended by accepting the gift; and when the natural reluctance he had at first felt was over, he experienced a wonderful glow of pride and satisfaction in it. He packed his traps, and left Lumby Hall next day; but before he went, old Mr Lumby sent for him and bade him good-bye and shook hands with him." Hiram's bewilderment at this unexpected proceeding was not allowed to last.

"My son tells me, Mr Search,' the old man said with quavering dignity, that you and he have an unusual tie between you, and that you saved him from a great peril, by unusual courage and resolution. My son is very dear to me, Mr Search, and I am grateful to any man who has done him a service.'

Mrs Lumby thanked him also; and Milly gave him a hearty farewell. The women had some guess as to the nature of Hiram's service, though even they were miles away from comprehending the real value of it; but Gerard's father had no suspicion. The head-groom was a great chum of Hiram's, and pretended business in order to have the fun of a drive with him into Brierham. Their way led them by the road a hungry tramp had travelled once upon a time; and when they reached the brow of a certain little hill, Hiram got out and sat upon a certain stone there, and smoked in solemn silence for a time, and then walked on beside the dogcart to a gate where he paused again. He took the half-sovereign in his hand and looked at it, on the spot where it had first come into his possession; and then, with a heart full of quiet thanksgiving, he climbed back into the dogcart and left those scenes behind him.


Nothing less than a marriage by special license would content him; and he and Mary were married by special license accordingly. when the ceremony was over, by way of wedding tour what should the quaint creature do but buy a dogeart and a noble horse, and drive with his happy little wife along every foot of the ground he had wandered over on his way to London! He told her the whole story. He showed her the public-house where he had practised the art of chair-caning. He even went inside and sat upon one of the chairs his hands had caned, and drank a glass of ale so seated; and the landlord, not knowing him from Adam, was mightily obsequious to him. And I do not think there was ever a happier wedding-tour than that simple journey afforded. The September lanes were lovely all the way, and the wedded pair had splendid weather. They drove right into London, and Hiram drank a bottle of champagne with that official of the Omnibus Company who had engaged him and discharged him; and dined regally with his wife at the restaurant where he had served as waiter; and paid a pious pilgrimage to the house where he had first met Mary. Then after a month amid the gaieties of the Metropolis, he sold the horse and the dogcart and went down to Brierham; and on the outskirts of the little town he bought a cottage, and there lived in peace and plenty and homely contentment, not spending more than half his income. At this date, he is the father of a boy, whose name is Gerard, and whose godfather is no less a person than the master of Lumby Hall. Hiram himself is an ardent politician, and is counted a safe draw at any political meeting. He fought the last general election with great valour in behalf of a Radical candidate against Mr Valentine Strange, who secured the seat in spite of him. His invective against the policy of Lord Beaconsfield is said to have been remarkably vivid; and many of the leaders of the Brierham Morning Star at that stirring period were believed to have been inspired by him.

Good-bye, Hiram! Rugged, gentle, generous, brave, farewell! Ill as I have drawn you, you may stand as a type, which has been limned better many a time by abler hands, of the splendid manhood of the West-a manhood independent, valorous, and kindly; racy of the virtues of freedom; without fear and without reproach.


In following Hiram Search to say good-bye, I have run too fast forward, and have anticipated somewhat. Come back again for but a little while to scenes and people grown familiar.



THAT there exists a literal universe of living beings all unknown to the ordinary observer, has long been a fact familiar to those who work with the microscope. Not merely within the compass of a water-drop do they find varied forms of animal and plant life, but even preying upon low animals and plants, the zoologist and botanist discover still lower forms of life. Of late years, considerable advances have been made in our knowledge of these lower organisms, and the fields of lower plant-life are especially being investigated by busy workers, who are year by year contributing_additional curious facts to our botanical store. It may form a suitable inquiry, by way of preface to a brief study of these orga

nisms, to ask: 'What is a lower plant?' Popular conceptions of plant-life will hardly assist us here, because the vast range of lower plants lies outside ordinary ken. But we may fortunately find known plants to lead us to the lower deeps of vegetable existence, and to initiate us easily into some of the mysteries of life in its humbler grades.

Botanists are accustomed to divide the plantworld into two great divisions, one being that of the 'Flowering' plants, and the other that of the 'Flowerless' plants. The ordinary flowering plants, which are of higher nature than their flowerless neighbours, are exemplified by the common denizens of our woods, fields, and gardens. The buttercup, lily, wallflower, fuchsia, and pelargonium, are as natural examples of the first group as we could wish to see. The flowerless group is, however, just as familiar to us at least in its ordinary representatives. Thus the fern, mushroom, moss, and seaweed, never produce the conspicuous flowers seen in common plants, and they illustrate accordingly the flowerless section of the vegetable kingdom. The absence of flowers is further discovered to be associated with a curious life-history. The development of a fern or mushroom, for example, is a very different process from the early growth of a lily or an oakand as the lower plants at large agree with the fern in the essential details of their development, it may be well to select that familiar plant as an illustration of lower plant-life in a phase intimately related to the subject of this paper. When the back of a fern frond or leaf is examined in the autumn-time, a large number of little brown bodies, called sori, are to be noticed. These sori, on careful examination by the aid of the microscope, are duly discovered to be each a collection of curious little cases or capsules which may be named 'spore-cases; the latter, as they exist in a cluster on the back of the frond, being covered by a membrane to which the botanist gives the name of indusium. Each spore-case



is similar in structure to its neighbours. usually consists of an oval, flattened body, around one edge of which runs a very prominent ring, which gives to the whole spore-case somewhat the appearance of a helmet. Inside the sporecase are contained the spores. In the early history of the spore-case, it was occupied by a single central cell; but this cell gave origin to others, some sixty-four or more spores, which float in so that when the case is ripe, it may contain a fluid that fills the case. Each spore simply consists of a little case containing a speck of living matter or 'protoplasm.' Under the microscope, no structure or texture is discoverable in the spore; yet, as in the undeveloped egg of the animal, the living matter of the plant, and is adapted and intended by nature spore contains potentially the substance of a new to reproduce, through development, the form of the parent-organism.

When the due season arrives, the spore-cases on the back of the fern-frond are uncovered by the shrivelling of the indusium or covering. Then each spore-case, on its own account, is fitted to discharge the spores it contains. The ring already noted as surrounding the case in part, to the drying of the case-and the case itself now begins to contract a result probably due is thus burst open. The sudden action of bursting, causes the spores to become dispersed or scattered in all directions, and those which fall into damp earth at once commence their new existence. For now, the spores are seen to develop the energies which belong to the 'seeds' they differ widely in the results of their germinaof other plants; although, as we shall observe, tion. When we plant the seed of a pea or bean, for example, the most natural of expectations leads us to hope that a pea or bean will grow up directly therefrom. And in the case of all ordinary plants this expectation is duly realised. Not so in the fern, however; for here, the spore moist earth, gives origin not to a young fern, which has found suitable surroundings in the but to a curious little leaf-like body, known is to be seen in the structure of this comparatively to botanists as a prothallus. No trace of the fern simple leaf which has sprung from the spore, and which seems in itself to represent the end of the spore's development.

To complete the cycle of development, and to return naturally to the fern-generation with which we started, requires the further study of the spore and its resulting prothallus. It may be meanwhile remarked that, as a rule, the number of spores produced by a single fern is very great. It has thus been calculated that in the male shield-fern (Aspidium filix mas), one frond bore ten thousand and sixty-two collections of sporecases or sori, from which no fewer than one hundred millions of ripe spores would be produced. Assuming further, that an ordinary fern-plant would produce ten fronds or leaves, the total number of spores produced by the whole plant would be little short of one thousand millions.

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The liverworts

appears before us as a beautiful green leaf, either directly or indirectly. heart-shaped in some fern species, but rounded resemble the ferns in their development; and in others. From its under surface, numerous those well-known flowerless plants the horseroot-hairs or rootlets arise, and these fix the tails' or equiseto agree with the ferns in having prothallus in the soil, and likewise absorb the young plant produced from a prothallus. nourishment. Now, it is among these root-hairs In a typical seaweed-such as the common that certain structures of the highest importance bladder-wrack (Fucus vesiculosus) of our coastsin fern-history begin to be developed. The struc- the development resembles that of the fern in tures in question correspond in a measure to the the production of a young plant through the stamens and pistil, or reproductive organs of higher union of the reproductive elements; there is, plants. The bodies growing on the fern-prothallus however, no prothallus or first generation. But are of two kinds. In one of them are produced we discover that amongst the flowerless plants very numbers of curious little moving bodies, somewhat considerable variations in development may exist; resembling animalcules; and in the others are the new and young plant being occasionally produced certain cells, which apparently perform developed directly, and in other cases indirectly the part of seeds.' Thus sooner or later, the from the parent. contents of the two bodies come together; contact of the little moving bodies of the one set of organs with the little cells of the other takes place. As a result, each cell develops into a little body, which soon begins to show a likeness to a young plant. The whole process which takes place in the prothallus too forcibly suggests the fertilisation of ordinary plants, to escape notice; and just as the young plant arises from the fertilised seed, so the young fern springs from the fertilised cell of the prothallus. Then the young root strikes downwards into the ground, whilst the first leaf of the new fern rises into the air, and the underground stem in its turn becomes developed. The outlines of the fern being thus completed, ordinary growth and multiplication of fronds will convert the young plant into the likeness of the adult, which will produce spore-cases and spores, and thus repeat once again this curious history.

The habits of lower plant-life form of thenselves a highly interesting topic. Many species of lower plants are parasitic, for example; and a very large proportion of the skin-diseases that affect man and animals-ringworm being included -are simply due to the habits of lower plants in selecting the skin-tissues for a habitation. The specific disease in each case is to be viewed simply as the result of the plant-growth. Commercially, the lower plants also become interesting when we reflect that a large number of plant-diseases are caused by the growth of these organisms on neighbour-plants, as well as on animals useful to man. Thus a fungus has more than once threatened the commercial prosperity of France, through causing disease in silkworms; and another fungus is the cause of salmon-disease; whilst potato-disease is also the result of lower plant-growth.

The potato-disease may afford a good illustra tion of those habits of lower plant-life which result in the development of disease in other plants. The Peronospora infestans, as the potatofungus is named, forms as a delicate bloom on the surface of the potato-leaf. When the diseased leaf is examined by the microscope, the fungus itself is seen rising in the form of minute stalks, which protrude through the natural apertures that exist in the leaf. These stalks are

As a rule, each prothallus gives origin to a single fern only, and for a time the prothallus will remain attached to the young fern, as if it was intended by nature to discharge towards the young plant the functions of a nurse; just as the seed-leaves' of a higher plant nourish their young. But what is of importance to note in the foregoing history, consists in our plainly recognising the fact that the fern has thus a double development. An alternation of genera-jointed, and ultimately become branched, and tions,' as it is called, is clearly represented in its history. The ordinary fern produces a first 'generation,' consisting of the prothallus and its reproductive organs; and these in turn produce a second 'generation,' consisting of the fern itself. Something similar to this occurs amongst animals, as, for example, amongst the zoophytes, that grow in the likeness of plants, and incrust the oystershells. Here, from the fixed zoophyte a jellyfish-bud is developed. This, like the fern-spore, produces eggs or reproductive elements; and each of these eggs settling down, becomes a zoophyte, just as the cells of the fern-prothallus develop each into a fern-plant.

The history of a fern will be found to assist us in a marked degree in the comprehension of the life-histories of lower plants at large. For nearly all the flowerless plants develop in the fashion of the fern. In a moss, for example, a similar process occurs. As in the fern, the true reproductive bodies grow secondarily either on a thread-like body or on a prothallus. A mushroom, too, has an allied history to the fern. On the gills' of the mushroom we find the spores developed, and these give origin to new fungi

they arise from a network of threads which lies
deep down in the leaf-tissues, and which forms
what has been called the 'fungus-turf' or my-
celium. The ends of the stalks bear little swell-
ings named sporangia, and these correspond in
a measure, as in name, with the spore-cases of
our fern. These spore-cases often fall off
entire from the stalks; and occasionally one of
these cases throws out a root, which is the begin-
ning of a new plant, and which, finding its way
into a potato-leaf, will produce there the charac
teristic fungus. But more usually, perhaps, the
contents of the spore-case-which consist of living
protoplasm-undergo a process of division, and
when the case bursts, as in the fern, a multitude of
little bodies escape. When these bodies gain access
to water, they develop a couple of curious little
tails, and by means of these tails they swim about
as if they were actual animalcules-hence the
name of zoospores applied to them by botanists.
If now, one of these active spores finds its way
into the leaf of a potato, it begins to germinate.
A tube or root is thrown out from the spore, and
this burrows into the leaf-substance.
In due
time, therefore, it will produce, by simple increase,


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the 'fungus-turf' with its stalks issuing from the a curious fact that in the fungus, as it grows on potato-leaf. When we know that each stalk the salmon at least, the spores have not been of the fungus may produce at least one thousand observed to be provided with the little eyelashof these little active spores, the reason why like filaments or tails seen in the spores of the potato-disease evinces such a tendency to spread, potato-fungus, and named cilia. In the ordinary is not far to seek. For as there may be millions Saprolegnia, growing on the dead fly, on the of stalks, there must be countless billions of other hand, multitudes of the little moving spores produced by a single diseased plant. But swarm-spores' with tails are seen. If, however, a most interesting observation was brought to the spores, liberated from the fungus growing on light when it was discovered that in addition to a salmon, gain access to another fish, they will the spores or spore-cases borne on the end of the germinate in its skin, produce the 'fungus-turf,' stalks of the potato-fungus, there exist other spore- and in a word, develop the disease. We thus note cases, lying buried in the leaf among the threads that salmon-disease is of a highly infectious of the fungus-turf' from which the stalks spring. nature; and we furthur see that it is contagious,' These latter are called 'resting-spores; they and propagated by direct contact between a exist in a state of quiescence; and only develop healthy fish and the germs of the fungus. From and spring into vitality after a certain period of the infected salmon, it is easy to infect a dead quietude. Their office is that of giving origin fly with Saprolegnia. In forty-eight hours after to new growths of fungi; and from the knowledge a fly had been gently rubbed over a diseased of these resting-spores,' one may account for patch on the salmon, the fly was found to be outbreaks of this disease after long periods of covered with a literal shroud of the white filafreedom from its attack. The presumed 'new' ments of the fungus. Thus it is argued, that if disease is, in fact, merely the result of the waking the fungus can be transferred from the living to activity of the 'resting-spores.' salmon to the dead fly, it may, conversely, pass from dead flies to the living salmon. The dead insects may thus, in fact, be the original growers of the fungus; and the fishes may thus be infected from the dead and putrefying insect-population of the waters. It is interesting to note that the salmon-fungus will not flourish in salt water. A visit to the sea will cause the fungus to disappear; although, on the return of the fish to the fresh waters, the disease may again make its appearance. This latter result can hardly with safety be attributed to fresh infection. It is regarded as more probable that the fungus has only been stifled and not killed by the salt water. If we bear in mind that the 'resting-spores' of the potato-fungus may reproduce the disease after long periods of quiescence, we cannot fail to see an analogy between the cases of the plant and the animal. The vitality of the Saprolegnia, which has only been checked by the salt water, may spring forth anew on the return of the fish to the rivers.

Equally interesting are the phenomena of lower plant-life which the study of the fungus producing the salmon-disease discloses. This latter plant is a near ally of the potato-fungus, and is named Saprolegnia ferax. In its most natural situation, the Saprolegnia is found growing on the bodies of dead flies which putrefy in water. Another but quite distinct fungus (Empusa musca), it may be here noted, may be seen growing on dead flies, and fastening them by its white stalks to window-panes. Recently, the salmon-disease itself has been studied by Professor Huxley, and the observations of this biologist serve to unite in a singularly interesting fashion the life-history of the Saprolegnia and the manner in which it is propagated. Seen growing on the salmon, the Saprolegnia seems to exist in patches of diseased skin, which, at first affecting only the scaleless parts of the fish, may ultimately come to appear on scale-covered regions. These diseased patches are each a colony of Saprolegniæ. The result of the fungus-growth is disastrous to the fish ; for, sooner or later, the tissues below ulcerate, and a raw, bleeding surface is thus formed, extending in some cases even to the bones. The fish suffers irritation and pain, and dashes about in the water, rubbing itself against stones, and thus increasing the mischief by laying bare the diseased patches. Then finally, the animal, weakened and ill, succumbs to the disorder. It seeks the banks of the river, gets grounded in the shallows, and finally dies exhausted, a victim to the ravages of a life infinitely lower than its own. Ordinarily, the Saprolegniæ feed and grow upon dead matter; but it would seem that, as in the case of the salmon-fungus, they may choose the living animal as a habitation. The potato-fungus, on the other hand, invariably infests living plants.

The causes of the salmon-disease have already been indicated in the statement that upon dead insects the fungi flourish naturally. But the causes of their transference to the living salmon form a topic concerning which we have little or no positive information. Such a fact as the existence of a fungus, usually given to live on dead matter, upon a living animal, may perhaps only be accounted for by supposing either that the habits of the fungus have undergone an extension, or that its range and choice of hosts were wider than has been hitherto supposed. Or we have an alternative supposition at hand in the idea, that the fishes which are attacked present some special peculiarity of constitution which lays them open to the attack of the lower plant. Thus the The examination of a diseased patch on the thoroughly healthy fish may be presumed to body of a salmon shows that it consists of the escape the attack of the fungus, just as the chances same network of threads, which, seen in the of a perfectly healthy person being attacked with potato-leaf, are named the fungus-turf;' and at infectious disease are small as compared with the ends of the filaments or threads of which those incurred by the debilitated body; whilst, on the turf' is composed, globular bodies, similar the other hand, the unhealthy or weakly fish in nature to those of the potato-fungus, are seen. may be presumed to be that which, ceteribus Inside these spore-cases, the little spores' or paribus, will present a fair field for the fungoid particles of protoplasm are developed; but it is attack. The diffusion of the salmon-disease may

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