"Marriage means all your eggs in one basket," said he.
"Ah!" sighed Phyllis once more. She wondered if her father really thought that she would be comforted in her great grief by a phrase. She did not want to know how marriage might be defined. She knew that all definitions are indefinite. She knew that in the case of marriage everything depends upon the definer and the occasion.
"So you see there is no immediate cause to grieve, my dear," resumed her father.
She did not quite see that this was the logical conclusion of the whole matter; but that was possibly because she was born a woman, and felt that marriage is to a woman what a keel is to a ship.
"I think there is a very good cause to grieve when we find a man like George Holland turning deliberately round from truth to falsehood," said Phyllis sternly.
"And what's worse, running a very good chance of losing his living," remarked the father. "Of course it will have to be proved that Moses and Abraham and David and the rest of them were not what he says they were; and it strikes me that all the bench of bishops, and a royal commissioner or two thrown in, would have considerable difficulty in doing that nowadays."
"What! You take his part, papa?" she cried, starting up. "You take his part? You think I was wrong to tell him--what I did tell him?"
"I don't take his part, my dear," said Mr. Ayrton. "I think that he's a bit of a fool to run his head into a hornet's nest because he has come to the conclusion that Abraham's code of morality was a trifle shaky, and that Samson was a shameless libertine. Great Heavens! has the man got no notion of the perspective of history?"